I got back home from a weekend trip and watched a Cinemascope movie for the first time on the new projector and was really pleased with the "big screen" effect.
The colors seemed to be growing on me a bit, but it still didn't look natural by any means. I was able to get a laptop running 32 bit Windows XP so I could utilize my Sencore CP5000 colorimeter. Unfortunately it appears to have suffered from age and it went through a fire in my home years ago. It was in it's metal case, so i was hoping for the best, but it seems to be blind to "red" now.
Regardless, I put up a 100 IRE screen and it was obvious that Green was way too high, so I had to drop the RG a ton to get Blue to track close to green. Red still read way low, but that is apparently an issue with the probe. I measured up and down IRE windows and it now tracks very uniformly for Blue and Green with a pretty consistent low level for Red.
Leaving the adjustment screen, flesh tones are now significantly better and the picture looks much more natural now. I noticed all my "gains" were at 0 when I started. Is this normal, or has this projector been whacked out adjustment wise prior to being shipped out (this is one of the B stock projectors)?
It appears I'll need to rent or buy a new colorimeter to set the grey scale up more accurately, but I can already see great improvement and I'm optimistic that when I get this properly adjusted, it will indeed be the experience I had dreamed of. Sharpness, edge to edge focus, uniformity, convergence... all seem excellent and I couldn't be happier with those aspects of this projector. Now, if I can get the color right... I'm going to be a happy camper!!! (Assuming the bulb issues are soon to be a historical footnote)...