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Sharp's Blu-ray cinema system makes EU debut

Samsung and Sony weren't the only ones showing off Blu-ray home cinema systems at IFA 2007. Sited opposite Sharp's achingly cool 20mm deep LCD TV was the BD-MPC70 BD 1-Bit Theatre System - a system we originally wrote about in February.

The model was available in Japan for a staggering 1,050,000 Yen (£4,460), offered 7.1-channel high-definition surround sound with matching speakers and 1080p Full HD Blu-ray playback.

We suspect that Sharp was showing off the BD-MPC70 BD at IFA to gauge public reaction before a 2008 launch in Europe. We just hope the EU version includes support for BD-Java. This is the forthcoming interactive platform for Blu-ray that should help the format compete on advanced features when compared to its HD DVD rival.

Other Sharp stunners

Other prototype products that Sharp showed off at the show were its stunning new 50-inch televisions with 100,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio, and almost 180 degree viewing angle. Astonishingly, they're also only 20mm thick and use half the amount of power as current LCD televisions.

It's been speculated that the contrast ratio is achieved by stacking multiple LCD panels on top of each other. These new TVs will be common by 2010, which is when Sharp's new LCD plant goes online.