Canon’s new REALiS projector exceeds DCI standard

The 4K500ST projector from Canon, the new member of the REALiS Projector family, offers improved display of video content at resolutions that exceed the DCI (Digital Cinema Initiative) standard of 4096 x 2160.


Available on the market from April 2016 onwards, with a suggested list price of $54,990, the 4K500ST features Canon’s LCOS (Liquid Crystal on Silicon) Technology with AISYS-enhancement. It’s the first 4K projector from Canon.

Unveiled this month, the REALiS 4K500ST Pro AV LCOS Projector delivers 4K resolution of 4096 x 2400, up to 5000 lumens and Canon’s LCOS Technology with AISYS-enhancement for brilliant, high-brightness and detailed image reproduction. The REALiS 4K500ST also offers a Genuine Canon 4K lens and a robust collection of advanced professional setting features, including Marginal Focus which helps ensure content projected on the peripheral portions of domed surfaces remains in focus.

At only 38.8 pounds this model also offers one of the most compact and lightweight form factors of a high brightness 4K Projector. According to Canon, “the REALiS 4K500ST’s combination of outstanding image quality, advanced features and compact size make it ideal for applications like immersive simulation and training which require outstanding image quality but may have limited spacing.”

“Demand for 4K projection display continues to rapidly expand in many existing and new markets, and Canon has responded by developing a unique model that combines 4K resolution and high brightness in a compact form factor,” said Yuichi Ishizuka, president and chief operating officer, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “Canon has leveraged its decades of expertise in advanced optics, image processing, and projection technologies to help the REALiS 4K500ST LCOS Projector deliver outstanding 4K image quality, versatile display features, and compact size needed to satisfy many of the requirements of today’s 4K projection professionals.”


The 4K500ST features Canon’s LCOS (Liquid Crystal on Silicon) Technology with AISYS-enhancement. This advanced technology is renowned for delivering virtually seamless images with outstanding color reproduction, and low-latency playback for improved display of video content. In addition to offering ultra high resolution of 4096 x 2400, the REALiS 4K500ST is capable of projecting other popular 4K resolutions such as the DCI (Digital Cinema Initiative) standard of 4096 x 2160 as well as Quad Full High Definition (QFHD) of 3840 x 2160.

In terms of optics, the 4K500ST projector comes equipped with a specially designed Genuine Canon 4K short focus wide zoom lens and throw ratio of 1.0 – 1.3:1, allowing it to project a 10 foot. wide image from an approximate distance of only 10 foot. This projection lens is the first to possess advanced spherical focus capabilities derived from Canon’s renowned L-Series EF camera lenses which is distinguished by a bold red ring around the outer barrel.

The lens delivers superb performance due to such sophisticated Canon optical technologies as ultra-low dispersion (UD) glass, aspherical lens elements and super spectra multi lens coatings. Advanced Canon optical technology in the REALiS 4K500ST is also present in its next-generation AISYS (Aspectual Illumination System) Optical Engine. This unique engine helps ensure the projector delivers an ideal combination of both brightness (up to 5000 Lumens) and contrast ratio (up to 2500:1), while also helping the projector maintain a small form factor. The 4K500ST is also able to deliver a virtually consistent level of brightness throughout its zoom range thanks to the combination of the Genuine Canon 4K lens and AISYS Optical Engine.

The REALiS 4K500ST also integrates powerful dual image processing engines that execute such complex tasks as smooth reproduction of uncompressed 4K video at 60 or 30 fps, and two upscaling technology options (BiCubic and Canon’s unique Shape Trace) to optimize 2K video and other non-native 4K resolution content.


Advanced image adjustments on the REALiS 4K500ST also include the following optional features:

  • Motion Blur Reduction: offers three different modes (Strong, Low and Off) for improved visibility when video content movement is fast.
  • Dynamic Gamma: analyzes individual areas of an image for specific, independent contrast adjustment so light and dark areas do not appear over or under exposed.
  • Memory Color Correction: enhances skin tones and other color features for rich, vivid results that look striking to the human eye.

The Canon REALiS 4K500ST also offers six different pre-set image modes, as well as three customizable image modes, to help optimize quality based on content type and projection environment. The projector’s special DICOM Simulation Mode can be ideal for displaying monochrome digital X-rays, CAT scans, and MRIs with superb grayscale gradation. This mode, which offers both clear and blue base color temperature presets, simulates the results of devices compliant with the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) Part 14 standard.


The Canon REALiS 4K500ST can be installed to suit a wide range of applications. Motorized Lens Shift, Zoom and Focus and a variety of other advanced professional calibration settings provide further installation versatility, including:

  • 4-Point Keystone Correction: allows the corners of the image to be independently adjusted to help ensure optimal image reproduction.
  • Built-in Edge Blending: enables the projection of one seamless, large image from multiple projectors without the need of special software.
  • 360-degree Vertical Installation: allows the projector to be positioned anywhere on the vertical axis. Fan speed can also be adjusted to help optimize results (depending on projector positioning).
  • Advanced Registration: allows independent position adjustment of the three primary colors (RGB) with high accuracy (0.1 Pixel) ultimately reducing blurred colors or lines often projected at the edge of an image.

Conceived to offer immersive experiences for various markets and applications, including simulation and training, museums and galleries, industrial design and higher education, the REALiS 4K500ST Pro AV LCOS Projector offers generous industry-standard connectivity, including four DVI and two HDMI inputs supporting single, stripe and cross configurations for 4K, 2K or HD video playback. This model supports PJLink which makes it possible to control and monitor the projector over the network – a feature excellent for observing lamp hours, usage and more. For even more control, the REALiS 4K500ST is a Crestron Connected device and supports AMX Device Discovery.

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Journalist, writer and photographer since 1979, both print and online, with a vast experience in the fields of photography, software, hardware, web, aviation, History, video games, technology, having published content in almost all Portuguese newspapers…