Projector Reviews

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Steven Stone  |  May 29, 2006  |  0 comments

When I think of home theater video projectors Hitachi isn't the first brand that comes to mind. Hitachi is probably better known for microwaves, compact music systems, and other mass-market consumer electronics. When Tom Norton offered me the HDPJ52 LCD projector for review I wasn't expecting very much. Simply put, every LCD projector I've reviewed in the past has been fatally flawed by poor color, inadequate black levels, and less than optimal resolution. Why should Hitachi do any better with LCD projectors than other manufacturers? What I neglected to consider is that Hitachi not only makes its own LCD panels and most other major components, they have been manufacturing business and presentation projectors for years. I packed my preconceptions into a large box and put it in the garage. With a newly open mind I unpacked the Hitachi HDPJ52. Welcome to the bright new world of 21st century LCD projectors.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Oct 15, 2005  |  First Published: Oct 30, 2005  |  0 comments
My, what a big eye you have.

In 2001: A Space Odyssey, we were introduced to HAL 9000—a plucky computer that likes long walks at night, organization, and things not named Dave. In 2010, we found out that we were going to need a bigger boat and that HAL had a sibling: Bob. Or it may have been Phil. It certainly wasn't Knight Industries Two Thousand. It turns out that four years after and five years before, a middle sibling has been discovered: PJ. (Lame, I know. I'm sorry.)

Peter Putman  |  Oct 17, 2004  |  0 comments

Hitachi's PJTX100 UltraVision front LCD projector replaces the short-lived Home 1, a low-cost, 964x544-pixel design that made a brief appearance earlier this year. I liked many things about the Home 1, but it suffered from very low light output—too low to be practical for most home-theater applications.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Jul 20, 2005  |  0 comments
Brighter, blacker, cheaper.

It has been interesting to follow the development of the 7200 Series from InFocus. Two years ago, I reviewed the 7200, the first high-end home theater projector from what was, up to that point, a company primarily known for business projectors. A year later came the 7205, which had some updates, including a new chip from Texas Instruments. It was brighter, had a better black level, and was cheaper. Now, a year after that, the 7210 follows this same progression.

Shane Buettner  |  Sep 12, 2006  |  First Published: Sep 13, 2006  |  0 comments
  • $2,999
  • 1280x720 single-chip DarkChip2 DLP
  • Key Connections: One HDMI input and one DVI-HDCP input, one component input
Features We Like: Dual digital video inputs in this price range rocks!, Pixelworks 10-bit video DNX video processing
John Higgins  |  Oct 15, 2006  |  0 comments
It's time to get a projector.

At the Home Entertainment Show this past June, the Home Theater staff put together the HTGamer Gaming Pavilion. The purpose was twofold. Not only did it give expo attendees a place to rest their weary feet for a spell, the pavilion allowed them time to relax and experience gaming on three different home theater systems. The first image these lucky attendees set their eyes on as they entered the room was a small rebel force attempting to break through the tyrannical Empire's lines of storm troopers in Star Wars: Battlefront II. An Alienware Aurora 7500 high-performance PC fed the image to the InFocus Play Big IN76 DLP projector and onto a Stewart GrayHawk screen. Even in a less-than-optimal convention environment, the IN76 produced an awe-inspiring image. But how would it perform in a theater?

Thomas J. Norton  |  Oct 08, 2007  |  0 comments

It's been a couple of years since we last tested an InFocus projector. When Fred Manteghian reviewed the $7,000, 720p <A HREF="http://ultimateavmag.com/videoprojectors/905infocus/">ScreenPlay 7210</A> back in September 2005 there was a lot less competition in the front projector market, and InFocus was a major player. It's still a respected name, with a long history in business and home projectors. But the playing field has not only become a lot more crowded, the name of the game has changed to 1080p. Not just 1080p, but 1080p at what would have been seen as impossibly low prices two years ago.

Thomas J. Norton  |  Jun 03, 2002  |  0 comments

Until recently, the beer-budget options available for equipping a home theater with a projection system were severely limited. You either bought used or you settled for a projector designed primarily to serve the business market. Both approaches saved money, but neither was ideal. You can luck out buying used gear&mdash;a car holds its value far longer than a video projector&mdash;but you can also get burned. A business projector can perform reasonably well at home, but it won't be optimized for home applications and often lacks important features, such as full control of aspect ratio.

Kevin Miller  |  May 09, 2002  |  First Published: May 10, 2002  |  0 comments
A new player in the home theater arena.

In the past few years, DLP technology has come a long way in terms of both picture quality and affordability. Not long ago, an entry-level one-chip 800-by-600 projector cost about $10,000. With the advent of the higher-resolution (1,024 by 768 and now 1,280 by 720) one-chip projectors, the front-projection world has become accessible to many more people. As the technology is rapidly becoming one of the hottest of the new fixed-pixel-display alternatives for both rear- and front-projection applications, new companies are constantly joining the DLP fold. InFocus—a company that, until now, concentrated solely on the professional business market—has entered the home market. The company's first offering is the ScreenPlay 110, a dual-mode one-chip DLP front projector with a resolution of 800 by 600 in the 4:3 mode and 853 by 480 in the enhanced-widescreen or anamorphic mode.

Steven Stone  |  Apr 11, 2004  |  0 comments

Every time I go to a party and people find out I write about home theater, they ask me about flat-screen plasma TVs. No one asks me about DLP projectors. Perhaps folks don't realize that, for the same money they'd spend on a 40-inch plasma display, they could have a DLP projector capable of producing a 90-inch picture. If they compared the ease of installing a 10-pound projector on their ceiling with the drudgery of attaching a 150-pound plasma set to their wall, I think more folks would be excited by projectors.

Steven Stone  |  Jun 29, 2003  |  0 comments

A year ago, Texas Instruments' new HD2 chip for DLP projectors, with a native resolution of 1280x720, was little more than a promise. Today you can hardly walk into a home-theater dealer without being hit in the eye by a DLP projector based on the HD2. It's just too bad that most HD2-equipped projectors cost more than $12,000.

Geoffrey Morrison  |  Sep 09, 2003  |  First Published: Aug 01, 2003  |  0 comments
This projector's so bright, you've gotta wear shades.

18.1 foot-lamberts. This light output would be impressive for any front projector. What makes it amazing is that I measured 18.1 ft-L on a 7.5-foot-wide (100-inch-diagonal) Grayhawk screen with a 0.9 gain. If you were to use this projector on a 6-foot-wide (82.5-inch-diagonal) Studiotek 130 screen (which has a gain of +1.3), you'd get an almost-blinding 48.6 ft-L. With that kind of light output, you'd be able to use a screen larger than 12 feet wide (165 inches diagonally) and still have a bright, watchable image. And that's in the low-power mode.

Fred Manteghian  |  Sep 26, 2005  |  0 comments

Too long have young men lusted for the thrill of the in-home big screen, only to be rebuked by the financial concerns of their astringent significant others. Thank ya' Jesus for dropping projector prices! Not so much that projector manufacturers figure out that they're not making any money and am-scray, but enough to keep enlarging the population of true believers. It's an exciting time for home theater aficionados and the InFocus ScreenPlay 7210 is here to save the day.

Thomas J. Norton  |  Jan 12, 2005  |  0 comments

As the first three-chip DLP projector to pass through my studio, the InFocus ScreenPlay 777 generated more than a little excitement. Apart from its futuristic, streamlined appearance, its size and weight&mdash;not to mention its price&mdash;immediately set it apart from the one-chip designs that have come to dominate the home-theater projection market.

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