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(Pocket-lint) - The story goes, having completed the setup of the Claro Holographic Television, the team from Wow Factor were summoned back hours later to relocate their floor display. The gathering crowds, of slack-jawed punters, were causing a fire hazard in the audio-visual department of Harrods and having seen the Claro, I can see why.

To simplify the Claro down into its component parts is rather like saying the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel is merely plaster and paint. But in essence the screen is a 1.5m x 1.0m rectangle of 10mm glass with a 610mm x 814mm sheet of translucent film stuck to it. Onto this sheet of film a Sanyo, XP50 LCD, projector casts the image. Or you could call it an open-plan back-projection TV, if you prefer. A pair of optional Ferguson Hill FH001 speakers, either side of the screen completes the set-up.

That lot costs you £25,000. The price tag commands its own paragraph.

The projector renders a breathtaking 40inch image on the glass screen that seems to hang in mid air and due to the science of the angels involved the image seems bright and clear even in environment with plenty of other light about. The projector can take numerous simultaneous inputs so the screen can be used as for TV, DVD and computer all interchangeable at the press of the remote control. Customisation is the name of the game and the Claro system can have the type of projector altered, to a DLP for example, as well as its placement, if it suits the client requirements. In a standard instillation the projector sits on the floor about 5 feet behind the screen, so don't get any ideas about trying to cram this set up into a poky front room.

If you have the tape measure out by now, and you are prowling the sitting room thinking you don't really need that sofa or you could always dispense with that dividing wall, hold your horses. Remember the Ferguson Hill FH001's. These have been created to look more like a sonic weapon than a sound system, and stand an impressive 1.65m high by 0.92m wide by 0.72m deep. YES, Metres! These monsters make up £9,999 of the price tag and are driven by modified Lowther DX3's. As the designers point out, to hear bass below 150Hz you will need an additional sub-woofer unit, oh, and you will need a sound system with enough metal to power all three speakers as well. Well it's only money!


This is not a media centre for the faint hearted, although it might bring on palpitations. The image is wondrous, the sound magnificent, but then again at this price it should be! The current set of Claro is limited to only 50 and it is well worth going to Harrods 3rd floor to join the admiring throng, just please, don't block the fire exits.

Writing by Charlie Brewer.
Sections TV