Sony unveiled its new OLED reference master monitors, much anticipated replacements for CRT monitors for critical evaluation applications. Also introduced was Sony’s new SR Memory camcorder. In an unusual move, Sony chose to unveil the new monitors and camcorder at the HPA Tech Retreat in Palm Springs, CA, rather than at NAB or another major trade show.

Top: Sony BVM-E250 OLED monitor; below: Sony BVM-E170 OLED monitor

“First and foremost, at HPA, we’re proud to introduce the next generation of Sony’s display technology,” said Sony senior vice president Alec Shapiro. “These monitors are two examples of our re-commitment to the post-production industry. I know you’ve been waiting a long time for a new reference monitor, and we have it here at the HPA Tech Retreat. We’ll have them again at NAB and [will be] delivering the OLED monitors right after NAB.”

The new BVM-E Series, which will be available in 25-inch and 17-inch configurations, is the first line of monitors to deliver full HD-resolution OLED panels with 10-bit drivers, says Gary Mandle, senior product manager at Sony Electronics’ Professional Solutions of America group.

Sony developed a Sony Professional Display Engine for the new BVM-E series monitors which is designed to produce true blacks with high dynamic range, blur-free motion, and accurate color and picture reproduction. “This is what we’ve been waiting for,” said engineer and HPA Tech Retreat maestro Mark Schubin.

The new monitors also take advantage of Sony’s TRIMASTER technology with its EL (electro-luminescence) displays. The professional flat-panel display is designed to deliver a high level of color accuracy and consistency.

The BVM-E series’ OLED display also features Sony’s “Super Top Emission” technology and a “Nonlinear Cubic Conversion” color-management system, and I/P conversion technology for very  low process delay. Sony also redesigned the monitor’s chassis, which is now a black aluminum, lighter and slimmer.

Standard inputs to the BVM-E series monitors are 3G/HD/SD-SDI; HDMI and a DisplayPort as well as four slots with a choice of six BKM input boards. HD frame capture, pixel zoom and P&P (Side by Side, Butterfly, Wipe, Blending) are additional features.

The BVM-E250 will be delivered in mid April, and the BVM-E170 will be available in June. Sony has not yet established pricing.

Also introduced was Sony’s new SR Memory cancorder. “It’s not just a question of HD or SD anymore, ” said Shapiro. “You need to be ready for what’s beyond, and to accommodate post processes, we’ve evolved HDCAM SR technology.

“It all comes down to workflow,” he continued. “Tape has been critically important, but more and more workflows are incorporating file-based technologies. SR 3.0 goes that way. It’s a future-proof upgrade path to file-based production and new memory so HDCAM SR can meet current and future needs. It’s part of a hybrid strategy to give users the best of both worlds.”

“SR has always been inherently file-based,” added Shapiro. ” It can now be natively accessed as a file. Sony is firmly committed to file-based production.”