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BenQ HT1070 DLP Projector Review
Al Griffin | Apr 20, 2017
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $699 AT A GLANCE Plus Calibrates well for accurate color Better-than-average contrast ratio Backlit remote control Minus Limited installation features High fan noise in Normal Lamp mode Not as bright as competition THE VERDICT The better-than-average contrast and accurate color potential offered by BenQ’s low-cost projector make it a great option for a budget home theater. Budget 1080p projectors targeted at sports fans are a staple of many manufacturers’ lineups. These usually come with a promise to “transport you to the stadium” by projecting a bright, 100-inchdiagonal picture from just a few feet out from a wall or screen, and they include a Sports picture mode to give Astroturf that hyper-real, greener-than-green look. In some cases, however, such projectors can deliver surprisingly accurate images. Pair one of them with an equally affordable screen, and you’ll get a satisfying big-screen movie-viewing experience for under $1,000.
Sony VPL-HW45ES 3D SXRD Projector Review
Thomas J. Norton | Mar 30, 2017
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $2,000 AT A GLANCE Plus Excellent color and detail Bright, punchy picture That price! Minus Middling blacks and shadow detail THE VERDICT With all of today’s hullabaloo about 4K and HDR, it’s easy to forget that there’s something special about a theater-like image on a big projection screen—even if it’s plain vanilla, standard dynamic range, and 1080p. One look at the Sony VPL-HW45ES will remind you of that fact. I've been projector-less for a good two years. It began with a 2015 move across the country from California to Florida. Then came a steady stream of flat-screen TVs as that technology progressed from the 2K era to the age of Ultra HD with 4K resolution, advanced color, and high dynamic range (HDR). Still, it’s not like I’ve been exiled to the proverbial desert island. Those top-of-the-line TVs have been a treat, and there’ll be more to come. I’ve missed having a big screen, however, with the sense of image immersion that only a frontprojection setup can provide.
JVC DLA-RS4500 D-ILA Laser Projector Review
Kris Deering | Feb 27, 2017
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $35,000 AT A GLANCE Plus True 4K (4096 x 2160) D-ILA panels Improved HDR support including HLG Reference-quality optics Minus Fan noise can be intrusive HDMI sluggish to sync Native contrast not quite on par with rest of JVC line THE VERDICT While JVC’s first native 4K projector for consumers doesn’t quite deliver the contrast of its 1080p lineup, its projected image is breathtaking with both 1080p and 4K content. With its advanced laser light engine, reference-quality optics, and enough lumens to light up a massive range of screens, you have a true flagship-caliber offering from JVC. While 4K has become the new norm for the flat-panel industry, its adoption into the home projection market has been slow, to say the least. Until now, Sony has been trailblazing native 4K for the consumer home theater market while others have offered quasi-4K options that use techniques to deliver near4K quality with 1080p imaging systems at more affordable pricing. Among those manufacturers, JVC led the way with their e-shift system, which over time has matured to contend quite convincingly with native 4K designs.
Optoma HD142X 3D DLP Projector Review
Al Griffin | Dec 13, 2016
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $579 AT A GLANCE Plus Great value Good overall performance Backlit remote control Minus Limited installation features So-so contrast THE VERDICT Good overall performance, ample adjustments, and a low price make Optoma’s HD142X a great entry-level projector. You might not be aware of it, but there’s a new war going on. No, it’s not between countries, ideologies, or individuals; it’s between DLP projector manufacturers. A handful of companies are battling to provide a single-chip model that delivers the best-looking, brightest picture at the lowest price. Over the past few months, I’ve reported on two such projectors, the ViewSonic LightStream Pro7827HD ($890, Sound & Vision, September) and the InFocus ScreenPlay SP1080 ($549, see review at soundandvision.com). Next up: Optoma’s HD142X ($579), another affordable model aimed at the casual home theater fan and gamer.
InFocus ScreenPlay SP1080 3D DLP Projector Review
Al Griffin | Oct 12, 2016
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $549 AT A GLANCE Plus Good value Decent overall performance Capable of high brightness Minus Brightness limits color accuracy So-so contrast THE VERDICT While it’s not without compromises, the SP1080 delivers good overall home theater image quality for its very low price. A home theater projector is designed for permanent installation in a light-controlled environment. A mini projector is meant for giving business presentations or toting to a vacation home. What is the line that separates the two categories? Until recently, it was price: A typical home theater model started at around $1,000 and shot up from there. But the InFocus ScreenPlay SP1080 seems intended to blur that line: It’s priced at a mere $549, or the same amount you’d pay for a high-quality mini projector. Consequently, home theater projection has now become almost absurdly cheap. But is this new InFocus any good? Let’s take a look.
Epson Pro Cinema 6040UB 3D LCD Projector Review
Al Griffin | Sep 02, 2016
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $3,999 AT A GLANCE Plus Crisp “4K Enhanced” picture Ultra HD and HDR compatible Impressive 3D performance Minus Some motor noise with Auto Iris active High fan noise in certain picture modes THE VERDICT Epson’s Ultra HD and HDR-compatible 3D LCD projector delivers a compelling mix of performance and features for its $3,999 price. With 4K/Ultra HD quickly taking over as the default resolution for new TVs, it seems ironic that projectors, the display type that would most benefit from 4K resolution, have been slower to transition to the new format. Sony is the only manufacturer to introduce 4K-res projectors aimed at the general home theater market, and with the cost of entry for those models stuck in the $10,000-plus range, it’s clear that 4K projection has a way to go before it becomes mainstream.
ViewSonic LightStream Pro7827HD 3D DLP Projector Review
Al Griffin | Aug 17, 2016
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $890 AT A GLANCE Plus Impressive brightness Clean, detailed picture Good overall 3D performance Minus So-so contrast Relatively high fan noise THE VERDICT ViewSonic’s low-budget Pro7827HD home theater projector has its compromises but delivers impressive performance for the price. When you consider the benefits of buying a 1080p projector, the main one that should come to mind is price. There are a few native 4K models, including ones with high dynamic range capability, but they still remain costly, with the cheapest being Sony’s VPL-VW350ES at $8,000. Even those that accept 4K signals and deliver a faux 4K picture, such as JVC’s e-shift models, remain in the several thousand dollar range. Survey the plain ol’ 1080p field, on the other hand, and you’ll find plenty of bargains, including ViewSonic’s LightStream Pro7827HD DLP projector, with a list price of $890 and an online street price of just $799.
BenQ HT3050 3D DLP Projector Review
Michael P. Hamilton | May 25, 2016
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $1,399 AT A GLANCE Plus Highly accurate and stable colorimetry out of the box Impressively sharp and detailed images at a reasonable price Useful calibration adjustments including lockable ISF modes Minus Punitive light leakage from lens opening Limited lens adjustments constrain placement options 3D glasses not supplied THE VERDICT BenQ's HT 3050 delivers surprisingly good performance for its price, but noticeable light leakage drags down an otherwise strong recommendation. For a while now, projector manufacturers who employ three LCD panels for the required red, green, and blue primary colors (we?re talking about you, Epson) have pointed to that technology?s ability to deliver equal lumens output for both white brightness and color brightness. Citing research by various international standards organizations, the 3LCD consortium maintains that single-chip DLP projectors (referred to as 1DLP) may suffer...
LG PF 1000U 3D DLP Projector Review
Al Griffin | May 18, 2016
2D Performance 3D Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $1,400 AT A GLANCE Plus Ultra short throw design Accurate color Built-in smart/streaming features Minus Mediocre picture contrast Limited brightness Poor picture uniformity THE VERDICT LG’s PF1000U has a number of compelling convenience features, but its performance is well below that of other comparably priced 1080p projectors. A compact, portable projector makes sense for a rec room or vacation home where a full-scale, full-time home theater isn’t possible—or even wanted. LG isn’t well known as a projector company, but they’ve been steadily building a portfolio of compact projector options over the past few years. Last year, I checked out the PF85U (soundandvision.com), a 1080p model with an array of smart features, including Web browsing and Netflix streaming. This time around, I’m looking at LG’s PF1000U, another 1080p DLP model packed with an array of smart/streaming features.
JVC Procision DLA-X750R 3D D-ILA Projector Review
Kris Deering | May 05, 2016
Performance Features Ergonomics Value PRICE $7,000 AT A GLANCE Plus Twice as bright, same contrast HDR10 compatible and full P3 color support HDMI 2.0a and HDCP 2.2 Minus Black uniformity hit or miss New HDMI chips slower to sync Still no native 4K THE VERDICT With nearly twice the brightness of its predecessor, big improvements to 3D and 4K playback, and a good dose of UHD future-proofing, the DLA-X750R is more than just a mild refresh. When new JVC projectors were announced at this past October’s CEDIA, they basically looked the same as the models from two years ago, with only some modest differences visible on paper in the brightness rating plus support for the latest version of HDCP. But in use, the new DLA-X750R features some significant upgrades from the outgoing DLA-X700R. Let’s dive in and see how JVC delivered one of the best projectors I’ve reviewed to date.