The home theater version of the world's favourite astro-mech droid got an upgrade, boosting its DLP projector to 1,024 x 768 pixels and 1,500:1 contrast ratio from the previous 800 x 600 and 1,000:1. Still short from the basic HDTV 720p resolution, but it can do plenty of stuff.The DLP unit can project a 80" image from 16.5 feet away, even rotating it's viewing angle 65 degrees to show the image on the ceiling, for people lazy enough to play Wii while lying down. As before, it includes a DVD/CD player and iPod dock connector, pushing sound through its built-in 20-watt speakers. The USB and memory card readers are good to display images or the obligatory secret planet-sized deadly station plans.
The coolest touch in this 20 1/2" high by 13 1/2" diameter unit is its LED indicator, which shows the function currently in use but also random patterns in true R2-D2 style. However, for $2,799.95, I'll keep using my Marantz and try to look a little more like Chewbacca every day, Falcon remote or not. [Hammacher via 7Gadgets]