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Sony unveils new brand as it looks to expand gaming reach beyond PlayStation consoles

Newshub logo Newshub 30/06/2022 Mike Kilpatrick
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Sony is releasing a new brand called Inzone along with a range of products as it looks to expand its gaming reach beyond consoles and onto desktops.

Unfortunately for Kiwis the flagship monitors don't appear to be coming to Aotearoa any time soon, with only the headsets getting a release here, at least in the short term.

The M9 is the highlight of the product range, a 27-inch 4K monitor with 144Hz refresh rate.

It is G-Sync compatible and features support for variable refresh rate (VRR) gaming through an HDMI 2.1 port. 

Anyone connecting a PS5 through that port will also get automatic switching depending on whether it detects the user is watching a movie or playing a game.

According to the Japanese tech giant, the PS5's HDR output has been optimised for the M9 too. If and when it becomes available in Aotearoa it's likely to retail for upwards of $1500, with the M9 hitting shelves in the US later this year for US$899.

If you connect the M9 to a PS5 through that port, you’ll get access to a feature that will automatically switch the monitor between its included low-latency and picture processing modes when it detects you're about to play a game or watch a movie.

Sony has also optimised the PS5's HDR output for the M9, and you'll see the benefits of that tuning automatically as well. Sony's M9 will hit shelves this summer and retail for $899.

A full HD, 240Hz monitor known as the M3 will also be released, supporting both G-Sync and VRR, but the dynamic range won't be as good as the more expensive M9.

It will be available overseas during the Southern Hemisphere summer and will cost US$529, meaning a likely retail price here of around $1000.

In better news, the trio of headphones announced will be coming to Aotearoa later next month

They joins the likes of JBL, Logitech and Arctis Prime in the market as Sony hope to grab a slice of the PC gaming market here.

The new brand offers three different models to suit the differing needs of the growing number of Kiwi gamers, starting at $199.95 for the H3 model, rising to $499.95 for the H9 model.

The mid-range H7 will retail for $399.95 in Aotearoa, the company said.

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"The market has been expanding with a higher interest in gaming with the spread of esports tournaments and the advancement of gaming entertainment," said Yukihiro Kitajima, head of Game Business and Marketing Office, Sony Corporation.

"With Sony's strong history of high-end audio and visual technology products, we believe this new line will offer even more options for those looking to upgrade their current gaming systems.

"We are committed to contributing to the growth of gaming culture by providing PC and PlayStation gamers with a wider range of options to enrich lives through gaming," he said.

The H9 and H7 are both wireless, with 32 hours and 40 hours of battery life respectively. The H3 is wired, with all three models having flexible flip-up boom microphones with mute functionality.

The wireless headsets can be charged while playing, the company said, and 10 minutes of charging will give up to an hour of wireless gameplay.

Inzone Hub PC software will activate 360-degree Spatial Sound, with 2-channel stereo audio signals boosted to 7.1 surround sound. A smartphone app-based personaliser will also allow users to optimise the sound for their ear shape.

All three models are designed to be worn for hours of gaming, with wide, soft headband cushions and earpads shaped to minimise pressure on the player's ears.

The range-leading H9 has multiple noise-cancelling microphones built in. Sony has also incorporated the same Dual Noise Sensor Technology used in its 1000X series headphones in the H9. 

An ambient sound mode is also available for those who need to hear their surroundings.

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