Philips Ultra-Widescreen 21:9 Cinema LCD Moves the Letterbox Bars To the SideS

This is kind of ridiculous. Philips's new 56-inch LCD, bound for Europe, is boasting a 21:9 aspect ratio-displaying a full anamorphic 2.40:1 frame without letterboxing. But what about watching TV?

Or even watching the large number of films that aren't filmed in 2.40:1? If all you watch is big-budget blockbusters (2.40:1 is the aspect ratio of Panavision 70mm film), then this will be great for your rich-guy home theater.

But if you're thinking about watching HDTV (native aspect ratio of 16:9) or any of the many, many thousands of films shot in less-than-21:9, you'll have to throw some letterboxes on the side. You won't even get to enjoy those IMAX scenes from Dark Knight in their glorious full-frame beauty. But if you never take Iron Man out of your BD deck, this is the TV for you. Philips is looking at a Spring '09 release, with more details coming next month. [Philips via GadgetVenue]