I'm sticking with CRT. I only got into it a few years ago with an NEC 9PG, and currently have a Barco Cine8 Onyx and a BG808s (that I am converting to LC as well and plan to blend them). I'm also looking for a 9 incher at an affordable price in the EU right now, and it's no easy task to find one!
My reasons for sticking it with CRT? The fact that I don't have to buy a whole new projector whenever there's a problem.
Here's my pros and cons. Keep in mind I'm comparing to a projector in the price-range that I got the CRTs for. So say between 300-600 EUR range, IE not a laser based system, just the average HD ready things you can get for around 600 EUR (Good luck finding a native 1080p projector for that price that performs even similar to the CRT).
-Yes, setup takes time. Quite a bit of it in fact.
-Yes the limit is at 1080p
-Yes, my 8"-ers are not as sharp as a digital at the same resolution (the blend will fix that though)
-Yes they are huge, and not as simple as putting them on a table and aiming one at a wall
-Yes light output is low compared to digitals
-No visible pixels (screen door), and this is the biggest selling point for me
-Black is black
-With colour filtered lenses, colours are much mroe vivid than I've seen any digital do (again not talking about the several thousand dollar new high-end stuff, I'm just not willing to spend that kind of money on a digital set that will die within 3 years tops)
-No 'rainbow' effect
-Build quality is far superior (I still have an old video only Sony that works flawless despite nearing 40 years old at this point) and it can actually be repaired instead of getting replacements for almost the same price as a new projector.)
In short, at the same price, I could not buy a better digital, and even if I could, I would not want to. The explanation? RoHS. For those of you who don't know, RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) is the standard that limits the use of heavy metals and all sorts of hazardous substances (like lead) in electronics. In short, it is the excuse for manufacturing E-waste instead of lasting electronics. You guys in the US don't have this, but everything that is made in the EU or made for use in the EU has it. When you buy a 6000 EUR projector, and have to spend 3000 EUR on complete new electronics for it every other year, well... I just don't want any of that. I'd rather make toilet paper from my money. At least that'd get some use
On a more serious note, RoHS for example doesn't allow the use of lead in solder. Lead is what made solder flexible. Without it, it is literally fragile and breaks and snaps. It is the reason behind all the consoles breaking their own processors, IE RROD, YLOD. The simple fact that with digital projectors lead-free solder, sub-miniature (IE short-lived) capactitors and heat are all neatly packed up in a small casing, is a recipe for repeated failures.
Admittedly for those not qualified in electronics, a CRT is a daunting task, and even the smallest failure will be a pain to fix, but for those who know their way around a soldering iron, the bang for the buck is with CRT, now that the prices are dropping, even moreso than in the past.
If you can point me to a 4K capable projector that I can get used for 600 EUR and will last me more than three years of use, point me in the right direction.