2012 Editors’ Choice Awards Page 18


Epson Powerlite Home Cinema 5010 Projector

(April/May 2012)

Sometimes things turn out different than you expected. This was definitely the case with Epson’s Powerlite Home Cinema 5010 projector, which at first seemed like just another good-performing, low-cost LCD model, but ended up besting projectors priced well above its $2,999 cost in the brightness department.

The 5010 is 3D-capable, though you’ll need to spend extra on Epson’s active shutter glasses and IR 3D emitter. Horizontal and vertical lens shift make setup a snap, and its pixel-alignment feature is motorized so you can move close up to the screen when making that adjustment. But getting back to the Epson’s main draw, brightness, it produced a staggering 48 footlamberts (ftL) on a full white image when switched to Dynamic mode — a number that far exceeds most other projectors we test, and certainly others in the Epson’s price range. Even when set to Cinema mode with the iris control switched off, the 5010 managed an impressive 19 ftL, while black level checked in at 0.003 for a contrast ratio of 6,333:1.

Translation: Epson’s projector is capable of creating, in Geoff’s words, “punchy visuals” with “dark blacks.” And that was just in 3D mode, which he went on to characterize as “well better than average.” As for 2D, Geoff found some weaknesses in the 5010’s color accuracy, but ultimately wrapped things up by saying “When you can get that much light on the screen, there’s so much you can forgive.”