I can't wait to get the HP! Tonight I experimented a little more with my Sharp 20000 projector and was getting very good brightness in High Contrast mode (iris closed fully), with the lamp set to high, on the Firehawk. With the HP and the close-to-eye-level I'll be able to set it, I should have plenty of brightness in economy lamp mode (saving roughly 1000 hours on the lamp life) and maximum contrast. With the cost of the Sharp lamp ($600), that makes the HP an even better investment. If I always use the Sharp in high lamp mode, by the time it gets to 1500 hours, the image will be unacceptably dim. In economy mode, the lamp maintains more of an even brightness over its lifetime, which should be extended from 2000 to 3000 hours. Add to this the ability to adjust gain for the HP simply by raising and lowering the projector and it begins to look like a way of keeping fairly uniform brightness over a lamp's life, while at the same time saving money on lamps. (We'll see if this theory plays out in real life.)
If I can get hold of a digital camera, I'd like to do a few comparison shots between the SS and the HP. Depending on the orientation, you get radically different impressions with the HP sample flat on top of the larger SS sample. Put your head near the light source (retro-reflective posture) and the HP looks like a snowy field next to a dull gray strip. Move your head down and orient the SS for maximum gain (angular-reflective posture) and the SS has the advantage in brightness. All in all, though, if you can get the right angle, I still prefer the HP for whiteness/brightness. If the surface is as uniform as reported, I know I'm going to love it.