New Sets Feature Breakthroughs in Lens and CRT Technologies, AV Network with Simple Remote The Home Electronics Division of Hitachi America, Ltd., a subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. (NYSE:HIT), www.hitachi.com/tv, today announced its 2002 projection television line including sets with integrated ATSC terrestrial and cable HDTV tuners, DVI and IEEE 1394. Hitachi has reinvented the UltraVision(R) line for 2002 with breakthroughs in all of the core technologies for high definition projection televisions. New CRTs, lens and screen systems, digital convergence system, and VirtualHD(TM) video processing deliver better contrast, brightness and sharper images. The new models also offer a new on-screen display and AV (Audio/Video) Network that have been developed to improve the consumers overall experience with the televisions. "The 2002 line features breakthroughs in both picture quality and user friendliness," said Bill Whalen, senior product and marketing manager for Hitachi America, Ltd., Home Electronics Division. "Hitachi innovations in CRT and lens designs create a compelling image and our new AV Network with simple remote make the system easy to use. These features along with our VirtualHD video processing circuitry, clearly define Hitachi as the leader in digital television." COMMITTED TO PICTURE QUALITY The new Hitachi projection television line echoes the company's commitment to the best possible picture and overall product quality. That commitment begins with Hitachi's investments for ownership of the core technologies critical for projection televisions. With complete control over design, development and manufacturing of CRTs, lenses and video processing circuitry, Hitachi engineers can introduce new technologies rapidly and coordinate the development effort to maximize the performance of the products. "Hitachi's ownership of all major projection television technologies is unique within the industry," said Leo Delaney, vice president of marketing for Hitachi America, Ltd., Home Electronics Division. "When lens design is improved, we have the internal resources to enhance the video processing circuitry, CRT and screen technologies to take full advantage of that improvement and deliver a superior product to consumers." NEW FEATURES FOR 2002 Reflecting Hitachi's commitment and expertise, its 2002 television line features a host of upgrades and improvements. Included among these are: -- Integrated HDTV Tuners: Hitachi's new top-of-the-line XWX series features built-in ATSC terrestrial and cable HDTV tuners to provide integrated high resolution, high-definition signal decoding. -- DVI and IEEE 1394: Featured in the XWX, SWX and UWX series, the Digital Visual Interface (DVI) with High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP) provides a one-way connection from source to TV for future premium services from cable and satellite providers. Also included in Hitachi's XWX series is IEEE 1394 with 5C copy protection, which is a networking connection for digital televisions and set top boxes and other equipment. -- AV Network: Another proprietary feature included in all XWX and SWX sets is Hitachi's new AV Network, which allows users to control all of their audio-video components using simple on-screen menus. The system combines infrared-based control of external components with intelligent on-screen "soft keys." The AV Network's easy "setup wizard" guides the user through the setup procedure using a series of six on-screen questions. Hitachi's AV Network stores the control codes in the TV, instead of the remote, which tightly integrates control with the on-screen display. -- Simple Remote: Designed for use with the AV Network in the XWX and SWX series, Hitachi's simple remote is stylish and ergonomic with a sleek textured finish. The remote's twelve strategically positioned buttons work in conjunction with the on-screen soft keys of the AV Network to allow complete control of TV functions and external components. The simple remote allows the consumer to clear the clutter of remotes off of the coffee table and maintain full control over the home theater system. -- Exclusive Hybrid Wide-Neck CRTs: Hitachi invented the hybrid wide-neck CRT specifically to meet the greater resolution demands of HDTV. The wide neck creates a finely focused beam. A smaller funnel then tightly controls the beam movement. This technology breakthrough delivers greater brightness, sharper detail and more consistent performance over the life of the CRT. The new hybrid wide-neck CRTs are included in Hitachi's XWX and SWX series televisions. -- Exclusive SC Super Contrast Lens: Hitachi engineered the SC Super Contrast Lens to have a significantly larger diameter that allows a larger picture area at the faceplate of the CRT. The larger diameter lens with multi-dimensional aspherical optics and patented liquid coupling technology also has a larger "sweet spot" for a brighter and better-focused picture. The new SC Super Contrast Lens is featured in the XWX, SWX, UWX and SDX series and also allows for a shorter focal length enabling smaller cabinet dimensions. -- New VirtualHD(TM): Hitachi's proprietary VirtualHD(TM) video signal processing converts conventional signals to a user selectable high resolution 1080i or 540p signal. Included in all XWX, SWX, UWX, and FWX sets, the new VirtualHD processes non-HDTV sources and increases the resolution of the incoming source material -- both horizontally and vertically -- to fully utilize the high definition capabilities of the Lens and CRT. Improved in 2002, VirtualHD creates sharper images by adapting to the amount of motion in the picture. For each new picture element, VirtualHD now references 26 points in both space and time to ensure smooth, sharp images. 2-3 pulldown correction continues as a standard feature of VirtualHD. -- New Screen System: Included with all new digital projection televisions is Hitachi's new screen system that creates detailed images with a high contrast ratio and "blacker blacks." The new system includes a 0.52mm fine pitch lenticular screen that improves detail reproduction and brightness uniformity. Also, all SWX models feature a new anti-reflective high-contrast shield that reduces ambient light reflectivity by 60 percent. All XWX digital sets include a deep-black anti-reflective shield that reduces reflectivity by an additional 80 percent. -- Magic Focus(R) PLUS 117 Manual Digital Convergence: Hitachi's premium eight-point Magic Focus(R) (Magnetic Intelligent Convergence) system has been expanded to all digital sets. Magic Focus uses light sensors to correct for the size and geometry errors that can occur due to unique magnetic influences in living rooms. After Magic Focus adjusts the picture for size and geometry, consumers can now fine-tune any area on the screen by selecting the new 117-point manual fine tuning option. XWX "DIRECTOR'S SERIES (TM)" Leading Hitachi's new projection television line up is the top-of-the-line 1080i 16:9 HDTV XWX "Director's Series(TM)". The sleek 65, 57 and 51-inch sets have a high-gloss black cabinet with built-in ATSC terrestrial and cable HDTV tuners, IEEE 1394 with 5C and DVI (HDCP). In addition to Hitachi's new hybrid wide-neck CRTs, super contrast 5-element lens system and high-contrast 0.52mm fine-pitch screen, the XWX series also features a deep black anti-reflective shield and a new industrial design. The sets include Hitachi's Magic Focus with timer, 117-point manual digital convergence, new VirtualHD video signal processing, AV Network and simple remote. Other features include Dolby Digital(R) output, MTS stereo/SAP with dbx(TM) and SRS(R) surround sound. The 65XWX20B, 57XWX20B and 51XWX20B are priced at $5,299.99, $4,799.99 and $4,299.99 respectively and will be available in September 2002. SWX SERIES Next in Hitachi's widescreen line is the SWX series with 65, 57 and 51-inch models. The HDTV Monitors feature DVI (HDCP), Hitachi's new hybrid wide-neck CRTs, super contrast 5-element lens system and high-contrast 0.52mm fine-pitch screen, new anti-reflective high contrast shield and a new industrial design. The sets include Hitachi's Magic Focus, 117-point manual digital convergence, new VirtualHD digital signal processing, AV Network and simple remote. Other features include MTS stereo/SAP with dbx(TM) and SRS(R) surround sound. The 65SWX20B, 57SWX20B and 51SWX20B are priced at $3,999.99, $3,499.99 and $2,999.99 respectively and will be available in July 2002. UWX SERIES Hitachi's UWX 16:9 HDTV Monitor series is improved in 2002 with screen sizes of 57 and 51-inches. The UWX sets feature DVI (HDCP), new VirtualHD circuitry, improved Magic Focus, new 117-point manual fine-tuning convergence, exclusive super contrast 5-element lens system, new high brightness CRTs and a high contrast 0.52mm fine-pitch screen. Other features include new custom cabinet friendly design, a high contrast protective shield, MTS stereo/SAP with dbx, SRS surround sound and new easy on-screen menu. The 57UWX20B and 51UWX20B retail for $2,999.99 and $2,499.99 respectively and will be available in August 2002. FWX TABLE TOP 16:9 HDTV MONITOR Rounding out Hitachi's widescreen HDTV monitors is the 43FWX20B tabletop television. Like the UWX series mentioned above, set features new VirtualHD circuitry, improved Magic Focus, 117-point manual fine-tuning convergence and high brightness 5-element lens system. In addition, the set features the new high contrast 0.52mm fine-pitch screen, a first-surface mirror, a high contrast protective shield, new high output CRTs and two wideband component video inputs. The 43FWX20B is $2,399.99 and is available in July, 2002. 4:3 HDTV MONITORS Leading Hitachi's 4:3 HDTV Monitor line is the 53SDX20B. The set features Hitachi's VirtualHD and exclusive super contrast five-element lens system, new high brightness CRTs, improved Magic Focus and new high contrast 0.52mm fine-pitch screen. Additional features MTS stereo/SAP with dbx, SRS surround sound, 3D Y/C comb filter and PiP. The 53SDX retails for $2,699.99 and is currently available. Hitachi's FDX 4:3 HDTV Monitor series, features 43 and 53-inch models utilizing Hitachi's VirtualHD circuitry, improved Magic Focus, the new high brightness five-element lens system, new high brightness CRTs and new high contrast 0.52mm fine-pitch screen. Other features include MTS stereo/SAP with dbx, SRS surround sound, a variety of inputs/outputs with 2 wideband component inputs, 3D Y/C comb filter and PiP. The 53FDX20B and 43FDX20B are priced at $2,399.99 and $1,799.99 respectively and are currently available. STANDARD DEFINITION SERIES Hitachi is also offering three analog projection television sets in 2002. The FX series with 60 and 50-inch models features new high output CRTs, nine point digital convergence, a four-element lens system and a high contrast protective shield. In addition, the FX series produces 850 horizontal lines of resolution, MTS stereo/SAP with dbx, speaker matrix surround sound, a variety of inputs/outputs including component and 24-watt full range speakers. Other features include universal glow-key remote and dual 181-channel tuners with auto programming. The 60FX20B and 50FX20B are priced at $1,799.99 and $1,499.99 respectively and are currently available. Rounding out the analog projection televisions is the 50-inch DX model featuring new high output CRTs, nine point digital convergence, four-element lens system and a variety of inputs/outputs. Other features include dual-tuner PiP, universal glow-key remote, MTS stereo/SAP with dbx, speaker matrix surround sound, 24-watt stereo speaker system and 850 horizontal lines of resolution. The 50DX20B is priced at $1,399.99 and is currently available.