Anamorphic Lens Vs. Zoom, Best Review yet!! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 45 Old 06-24-2013, 08:31 PM - Thread Starter
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This was a great read. I am still debating weather to get the FVX200 for the RS4810.

http://www.tlvexp.ca/2012/06/2-35-lens-versus-zoom-fight/
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post #2 of 45 Old 06-24-2013, 09:58 PM
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^^^

HMMMMMMMM... Interesting!

Especially the observation at the end of the article about the combination of the JVC projector with E-Shift and Anamorphic Lens!
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post #3 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 04:37 AM
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I hope no one here wrote this because it's pretty terrible IMO, just an uninformed blog post from someone who thinks zooming is better than a lens. It's definitely not a "review"
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When the projector is asked to vertically stretch an image to remove the black bars on the top and bottom, this requires the projector to process the picture and processing always degrades the image (for more information on this, read the article on 1080p resolution elsewhere on this site). The vertical stretch process degrades visible detail in the image by effectively 50%. Two million pixels of detail become one million pixels of detail. With only 1.56 million pixels of real detail to begin with on a 2.39 film, the stretching process degrades the image detail to roughly 780,000 pixels of detail. It’s 720p quality now and the image is noticeably softer than when it started out.

Where the heck did they get that? They provide no tests/data to back it up and the premise is just flawed from the get go.

Then there's this:
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As for light output, the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. The extra light coming out of the projector lens is spread out over a larger screen surface. This light is also sent through an additional piece of glass that further reduces light output.

Well yeah, that's the point,

This may be top it though:
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Anamorphic lenses have their own color properties and will require a separate white balance setting to be done.

I have never seen this claim made anywhere else. If this were true, I think you'd see lots of talk here from those who have their lens's on sleds.
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Anamorphic lenses that move in and out of position may need alignment over time. They may also affect the alignment of the projector image as well.

Seems pretty thin, "may need", "may also affect", really? I think Scott would take issue with that comment.

And then they go on with the section talking about "issues" with zooming but it's really all positives about why it's better, then they quote some tests and don't provide any data or where the info came from...
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See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do,
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post #4 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 05:17 AM
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He mentions that more and more projectors are coming up with the zoom memory, noticeably the new Epsons! im wondering which Epson has zoom memory? i only know of pana's and JVC's...
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post #5 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 08:37 AM
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I'm a fence sitter when it comes to lenses. However, what I do know is that it isn't "voodoo" like most cables are.

Hard Fact #1: When using zoom to give yourself CIH, you are giving up pixels per inch. Assume you have a 100" high screen. That gives you 10.8 pixels per inch. If you use the same height but zoom out for 2.4:1, that gives you ~8 pixels per inch or a 26% reduction in vertical resolution.

Soft Fact #1: Stretch non-anamorphic material to 2.35:1 will require processing to interpolate the bits. However, it has been proven time and time again that nearly any form of advanced processing (which any good player or HTPC can do) will interpolate those bits well. When the shift from DVD to blu-ray was occurring resulted in a good period of time which this technology was developed but more importantly refined.

Summary #1: It would be a tough sell to convince me that less unmodified pixels per inch is better than more well interpolated pixels per inch.


Hard Fact #2a: Regardless of Lens or Zoom, the total number of horizontal Pixels in 2:4:1 is the same
Hard Fact #2b: If using a lens on a 100" high 2.4:1 screen, gives you ~8.1 pixels per inch (1920 across). When using a lens (keeping it in place) for 16:9 the pixels per inch does not change
Hard Fact #2c: Per 3a, the effective resolution for 16:9 material with the lens is ~1440x1080.

Summary #2: With a lens, you keep more pixels with 2.4:1 material. With a lens, you keep less pixels with 16:9 material. However, without a lens, the opposite is true! The question you need to answer is "which material do I watch more of"!


Hard Fact #3a: If using zoom for 2:4.1 material in CIH, your foot Lambert (FL) will be reduced by 26% (same as HF #1 above) relative to a lens system.
Hard Face 3b: If using a lens...you will lose light approximately the same amount relative to a pure 16:9 system.

Soft Fact #3a: With a good projector and good light control, the loss of light may not be "big enough" or may be "tolerable".
Soft Fact #3b: With a lens system, light per square inch constant regardless of material!

Summary #3: A lens gives you constants light regardless of format, a zoom gives you less light as material gets wider. However, a zoom will give you maximum light with 16:9 compared to a lens.



Hard Fact #4a: A lens will cause more image distortion compared to a zoom setup (e.g. all lenses cause distortion)
Hard Fact #4b: The amount of distortion is inversely proportional to what you spend (e.g. why do photographers spend a ton on their lenses)

Soft Fact #4: Calibration and a curved screen can help correct some issues.

Summary #4: A lens will cause distortion, but it can be managed.


Hard Fact #5: Executing a zoom based system requires a more specific location allow the optics to work. Lens based systems don't.

Summary: ...don't really need one


To me, it boils down to this...if you primarily watch 2:35:1 material...a lens has more positives than negatives. If you primarily watch 16:9...then zoom has more advantages. But to simply dismiss one or the other is just hubris and arrogance IMO.

I must be guilty because people say I am guilty because they chose to call me guilty because they refuse to see the truth. Much easier to be part of the mob..
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post #6 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 08:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trepidati0n View Post


To me, it boils down to this...if you primarily watch 2:35:1 material...a lens has more positives than negatives. If you primarily watch 16:9...then zoom has more advantages. But to simply dismiss one or the other is just hubris and arrogance IMO.

Aren't you assuming a fixed lens? With a lens that slides out of the way--the type that *most* serious 2.35 people use--eliminates any alteration to the quality of the 1.78 image (aside from possible size choices due to the fact you got a wide screen).

B.
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post #7 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Brian B View Post

Aren't you assuming a fixed lens? With a lens that slides out of the way--the type that *most* serious 2.35 people use--eliminates any alteration to the quality of the 1.78 image (aside from possible size choices due to the fact you got a wide screen).

B.

I take a little offense at the phrase "serious people". I always get this feeling from this sub-forum of elitism. Not sure if that was your intent..but that is how I feel.

I focused on fixed for one big purpose, COST! One you go into a system with a good sled, you just priced nearly everyone out of a lens. The CineVista lens is the first time I have seem a case where you don't have to choose one extreme or the other. It is at least now a debate for some of us for a larger set of the AV population. Now with anamorphic blu-rays coming out, the debate becomes even more interesting. But, if we want to keep talking about $3k+ systems...the only people who will do this are those won't tolerate the compromise of zooming for 2:35+ and have the financial capability to do so. I am glad they can do so...but that isn't in my cards for the next decade.

But i'll leave it at this. Everything I have read say that CineVista lens provides a superior experience compared to zoom for 2:35+:1 material w/ a decent projector (e.g. in the $2.5k-$4k class). The question is...is $1200 worth it. That price is low enough where I might bite.

I must be guilty because people say I am guilty because they chose to call me guilty because they refuse to see the truth. Much easier to be part of the mob..
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post #8 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 11:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Cinevista didn't get as good reviews as the FVX200, which is $3000. That's the one I am on the fence about for the RS4810
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post #9 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 11:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trepidati0n View Post

Now with anamorphic blu-rays coming out, the debate becomes even more interesting.

Where did you hear anamorphic Blu-ray's are coming out? I've seen a lot of talk about John working on it, but at this point it all seems to me only slightly more than wishful thinking from what I've seen talked about.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do,
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post #10 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 12:56 PM
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Even if Anamorphic Blu-ray's did make the scene, I believe you would still require an A-Lens as all the Anamorphic Blu-ray does is negate the need for scaling in your projector or video processor and you would still have to expand the image optically... is that correct? confused.gif


...Glenn smile.gif
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post #11 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 02:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bardia View Post

Cinevista didn't get as good reviews as the FVX200, which is $3000. That's the one I am on the fence about for the RS4810

I'm getting that same projector and the lens I'm looking at is the Prismasonic C-150, a cylindrical lens that supposedly has less distortion than the prism-based CineVista. It's less than $2k, depending on the Euro/dollar exchange rate, and a few hundred more with a motorized vertical lift.

I'm spending a lot of money on the projector, screen, and other gear. I want to maximize the JVC's potential (even with zoom memory), no compromises with either 2.35:1 or 16x9 material. Like it or not, that means a lens.
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post #12 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 02:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

I'm getting that same projector and the lens I'm looking at is the Prismasonic C-150, a cylindrical lens that supposedly has less distortion than the prism-based CineVista. It's less than $2k, depending on the Euro/dollar exchange rate, and a few hundred more with a motorized vertical lift.

I'm spending a lot of money on the projector, screen, and other gear. I want to maximize the JVC's potential (even with zoom memory), no compromises with either 2.35:1 or 16x9 material. Like it or not, that means a lens.

FVX200 is the only option for my set up as I want to have a projector lift not a ceiling mount set up.
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post #13 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trepidati0n View Post

I take a little offense at the phrase "serious people". I always get this feeling from this sub-forum of elitism. Not sure if that was your intent..but that is how I feel.

I focused on fixed for one big purpose, COST! One you go into a system with a good sled, you just priced nearly everyone out of a lens. The CineVista lens is the first time I have seem a case where you don't have to choose one extreme or the other. It is at least now a debate for some of us for a larger set of the AV population. Now with anamorphic blu-rays coming out, the debate becomes even more interesting. But, if we want to keep talking about $3k+ systems...the only people who will do this are those won't tolerate the compromise of zooming for 2:35+ and have the financial capability to do so. I am glad they can do so...but that isn't in my cards for the next decade.

But i'll leave it at this. Everything I have read say that CineVista lens provides a superior experience compared to zoom for 2:35+:1 material w/ a decent projector (e.g. in the $2.5k-$4k class). The question is...is $1200 worth it. That price is low enough where I might bite.

Well, I was not intending to offend anyone. You wrote a lengthy post about pros and cons of zoom vs. lens and neglected to mention you were talking about a fixed lens--which inevitably has more compromise. Someone reading your post might get confused.

It is true that a moveable lens system may be more expensive, but *most* people agree it is superior to a fixed lens.

What's affordable varies from person to person. My use of "serious people" should probably just have read "people who want the least amount of compromise."

Brian
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post #14 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 08:21 PM - Thread Starter
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post #15 of 45 Old 06-25-2013, 10:58 PM
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Both blogs are severely flawed, especially the first one. It's a shame that the good AVSer's are basing their decisions on these blogs. If you want to read an informative thread click on the Cylindrical A lens Owners Thread. It has a lot of good info from the manufacturers of these lens who are the real people in the know. I have been using an A lens since 2004 and have tried every combination imaginable. That pixel math from the first blog mentioned is atrocious. First and foremost forget the source res which is 1920x800 on a 2.40 AR. That much is constant between the two. Thats the only thing thats the same. We can't do nothing about the source res. It is what it is.

Now, on to the the Key Advantages of owning an A lens and there are four. 1. Brightness gain(typically 20%) 2. Pixel density gain(33%). 3. Larger screen sizes per TR. 4. Instantaneous Scaling.

I checked my brightness by measuring ftls at the screen using the 100% APL of the digital video essentials bluray and my AEMC CA813 light meter. With the A lens I measured 13.78 ftls, without the A lens and zoomed I measured 11.13 ftls. or a 24% increase in brightness. Plain and simple.

Pixel density is a given. A lens uses 1080x1920. The zoom method uses 800x1920. 33 percent increase in pixel density. An A lens will look as sharp as the zoom does at 4xPH but at 3xPH. Zoom at 2.66xPH=A lens at 2xPH. So you can sit closer or use a larger screen. Advantage A lens. Again plain and simple and verifiable.

The last two advantages are self explanatory. Plain, simple and accurate. No voodoo.


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post #16 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 12:53 AM
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Used/refurbished lens' can often be found for cheap. So long as the portion of the lens where the light travels through isn't damaged, it's good.

Regarding the lens sled, you can have one built or DIY for pennies on the dollar compared to buying one of the A-Lens manufacturers offerings.

Seriously, I can understand the A-Lens costs, but charging what they do for the sled is just ridiculous!
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post #17 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 04:41 AM
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Originally Posted by coolrda View Post

3. Larger screen sizes per TR.

While true, I'm not really sure I'd say that's a benefit, reason being it's sort of complicated. If you're trying to use a lens to compensate for a short throw, it likely means your throw is at the short end, or inside the recommended throw and may actually produce more distortion (pincusion) than desired. Generally you want to use a lens at a long/max throw to minimize distortion.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do,
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post #18 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 06:41 AM
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While true, I'm not really sure I'd say that's a benefit, reason being it's sort of complicated. If you're trying to use a lens to compensate for a short throw, it likely means your throw is at the short end, or inside the recommended throw and may actually produce more distortion (pincusion) than desired. Generally you want to use a lens at a long/max throw to minimize distortion.
I agree. I'm a proponent of long throws as well for that very reason. But with a curved screen, a short throw and large screen works good. It allows one to do something that's impossible with zooming.


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post #19 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by biliam1982 View Post

Used/refurbished lens' can often be found for cheap. So long as the portion of the lens where the light travels through isn't damaged, it's good.

Regarding the lens sled, you can have one built or DIY for pennies on the dollar compared to buying one of the A-Lens manufacturers offerings.

Seriously, I can understand the A-Lens costs, but charging what they do for the sled is just ridiculous!

That's exactly what I did . It's a bit hard to understand the geometry or theory between the use of A-Len and Zoom before I remodelled my HT again After extensive researched on line and saw a display in CES about 3yrs ago. I was impressed by the ultra wide display and thinking to convert my 92" 16:9 to 120" 2.40:1 but there's no dealer in my region to show me how it can be done.
So I decided to DIY. I built the len with dual trophy prism and a vertical lift with remote. The screen is 120" curved as I concerned the throw distance of my small room
Since I replaced the old BD player with OPPO-103 earlier this year , I don't lift the Len anymore as the player has multi display modes build in.
IMO seeing is believing.
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post #20 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 08:56 AM
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That's exactly what I did . It's a bit hard to understand the geometry or theory between the use of A-Len and Zoom before I remodelled my HT again After extensive researched on line and saw a display in CES about 3yrs ago. I was impressed by the ultra wide display and thinking to convert my 92" 16:9 to 120" 2.40:1 but there's no dealer in my region to show me how it can be done.
So I decided to DIY. I built the len with dual trophy prism and a vertical lift with remote. The screen is 120" curved as I concerned the throw distance of my small room
Since I replaced the old BD player with OPPO-103 earlier this year , I don't lift the Len anymore as the player has multi display modes build in.
IMO seeing is believing.

Yes, it's hard to imagine until you see it. Well don on building it yourself. I'm not that handy otherwise I might have tried.

I too have the Oppo 103. You're losing some resolution though by leaving it in place and squeezing the image back to 16:9.

I've done some A/B testing w/ SD and HD material and it's def noticeable. Not night and day, but you can see it.
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post #21 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 09:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Yes, it's hard to imagine until you see it. Well don on building it yourself. I'm not that handy otherwise I might have tried.

I too have the Oppo 103. You're losing some resolution though by leaving it in place and squeezing the image back to 16:9.

I've done some A/B testing w/ SD and HD material and it's def noticeable. Not night and day, but you can see it.

Since my set up is a projector on a lift that goes back up to the attic, the only choice I have is to get the panamorph FVX200 which is attached permananetly to the front of the 4810. I just don't want to get that barrel effect. Do I have to be at least 18 feet away from the screen?
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post #22 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Bardia View Post

Since my set up is a projector on a lift that goes back up to the attic, the only choice I have is to get the panamorph FVX200 which is attached permananetly to the front of the 4810. I just don't want to get that barrel effect. Do I have to be at least 18 feet away from the screen?

Why is that your only option? An HE lens can be left in place at all times too.

See what an anamorphoscopic lens can do,
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post #23 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bardia View Post

Since my set up is a projector on a lift that goes back up to the attic, the only choice I have is to get the panamorph FVX200 which is attached permananetly to the front of the 4810. I just don't want to get that barrel effect. Do I have to be at least 18 feet away from the screen?

The lens doesn't have to move that far out to the side of the front of the projector.

How big is the shelf the projector will be mounted on?

How far back will it be?
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post #24 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 10:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biliam1982 View Post

Yes, it's hard to imagine until you see it. Well don on building it yourself. I'm not that handy otherwise I might have tried.

I too have the Oppo 103. You're losing some resolution though by leaving it in place and squeezing the image back to 16:9.

I've done some A/B testing w/ SD and HD material and it's def noticeable. Not night and day, but you can see it.

While that's true, the biggest reason people see a difference is because of the increased brightness when lens is out for 16x9/1.85 and smaller AR's. For instance, I took a third measurement last night with the lens out and it measured 18ftls. Going from 18ftls to less than 14ftls is massive. Much like we interpret a louder speaker, even if its a db louder or so, as being better in many aspect, we do the same with video brightness. A brighter picture is perceived to be better, of higher resolution, better color and shadow detail, etc. I too preferred removing the lens for 16x9 until doing the above. Now I'm satisfied with leaving the lens in as light stays constant between aspect changes. Light output is the most important variable that must be addressed and properly adjusted for when testing A lenses or making a lens vs zoom argument.


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post #25 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 10:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by biliam1982 View Post

The lens doesn't have to move that far out to the side of the front of the projector.

How big is the shelf the projector will be mounted on?

How far back will it be?

Biggest projector lift I have found is from Chief and can accomodate a 22.8" deep projector.

The 4810 is 18.5"
FVX200 is 4"
I need about 2 inches for the HDMI cable even with a 90' degree adapter

That's about 24"
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post #26 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 10:33 AM
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Another 'best review' that still gets a lot of information wrong. rolleyes.gif

With respect to the scaling required for the vertical stretch, it looks like he assumes you removes some lines of information so down res the original image so you can use some very basic upscaling or line doubling to get back to 1080 (like in the good old CRT days). Like you Stanger, I've never seen that anywhere before either (in literature or visibly), and the images I see when using a lens are definitely not softer. In fact, because a lens uses all 1080 pixels, the image looks sharper because of course 1080 pixels are smaller for the same screen area than 810 would be - that's 518400 more pixels being used to render the image.

Scaling has been pretty state of the art for a long time now - and is why many people started using HTPCs.

I agree with Stanger about some of these blogs too. A lot of them contain misinformation and mislead a lot of people. At least on a forum there's the opportunity to correct it.

Gary

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Originally Posted by elmalloc
Who says Cameron is "right" and why do we care about him so much - lol!

I trust Gary Lightfoot more than James Cameron.
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post #27 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Bardia View Post

FVX200 is the only option for my set up as I want to have a projector lift not a ceiling mount set up.

I'm not using a ceiling mount either. Setting the projector and lens/lift on a shelf in a closet behind the second row of seats. The lens/lift is designed for either ceiling or floor mounting. It would probably work just fine for you and give you the best of all worlds.
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post #28 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by coolrda View Post

While that's true, the biggest reason people see a difference is because of the increased brightness when lens is out for 16x9/1.85 and smaller AR's. For instance, I took a third measurement last night with the lens out and it measured 18ftls. Going from 18ftls to less than 14ftls is massive. Much like we interpret a louder speaker, even if its a db louder or so, as being better in many aspect, we do the same with video brightness. A brighter picture is perceived to be better, of higher resolution, better color and shadow detail, etc. I too preferred removing the lens for 16x9 until doing the above. Now I'm satisfied with leaving the lens in as light stays constant between aspect changes. Light output is the most important variable that must be addressed and properly adjusted for when testing A lenses or making a lens vs zoom argument.
My PJ is Epson 6010 and is bright in ambient control room and it comes with the built in stretch /squeeze mode, as I stated in the earlier post that I don't lift the Len anymore after I linked it up with the OPPO-103. Mostly I use it to watch movies only, I keep the PJ on anamorphic format and when I watch 1.78 or IMAX 1.85 3D movies, I'll use the OPPO unscan mode for play back as there're no loss image on top or bottom of the screen than there's only about an inch loss of vertical unused pixels on both sides which didn't bother me and it's not noticeable when I wear the dark 3d glasses. If I want to fill the screen with the same movie, then the image will be cut off a bit top and bottom, not significantly though. For TV sport events, I've no choice that I've to lift the Len, otherwise I won't able to see the message display on top or bottom of the screen. Or I can use the PJ squeeze mode with two bars on the side but the display won't be as bright as with the Len out. That's why I use dual display playback of my OPPO. one for the TV the other for the PJ. no mess around.
Good news that more 3d movies are produced in 2.40 and I think more consumers are going for CIH display, hope the TV net work will follow soon and fixed A-Len may become a normal device for projector.
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post #29 of 45 Old 06-26-2013, 07:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by archiguy View Post

I'm not using a ceiling mount either. Setting the projector and lens/lift on a shelf in a closet behind the second row of seats. The lens/lift is designed for either ceiling or floor mounting. It would probably work just fine for you and give you the best of all worlds.

That' cool. I don't have that luxury in my living room.
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post #30 of 45 Old 06-27-2013, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Gary Lightfoot View Post

I agree with Stanger about some of these blogs too. A lot of them contain misinformation and mislead a lot of people. At least on a forum there's the opportunity to correct it.

Gary
Here here. What a load of *&% from both of them. Being prolific does not make one an expert.


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