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Earlier this week, I pointed out that the price of active glasses for 3DTV has plummeted, now that Samsung has announced that it will sell them for less than $50. Now it appears that another point has been proven. I have contended for a long time that adding 3D support to a typical HDTV from a major brand has a marginal cost that approaches zero. It is just a matter of time before companies roll out 3D support to models other than their top-of-the-line premium sets (where they presumably have slightly better margins).

Well, I was right but I didn’t expect it to come so soon. According to a story in CE Pro, Sony will have 3D support in nearly two thirds of their 2011 HDTV lineup. 23 of the 37 models will be able to show stereoscopic 3D content. The smallest with 3D support is the 32″ KDL-EX720 series, which carries a suggested retail price of $999. That still is a hefty premium for 3D; the comparably equipped KDL-EX523 series 32″ model has a $749 price tag, or 25% less than the 3D model.

I’ll score this as a win anyway, because the prices are dropping and the feature is clearly migrating across the model lines. It won’t be long until a competitor comes along and slashes the price premium even further, and I expect that we’ll see 3D more or less across the board by the time the holiday shopping season rolls around.

Posted by Alfred Poor, April 15, 2011 6:00 AM

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About Alfred Poor

Alfred Poor is a well-known display industry expert, who writes the daily HDTV Almanac. He wrote for PC Magazine for more than 20 years, and now is focusing on the home entertainment and home networking markets.