Projector Help, Installer Pushing Runco LS-5 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 29 Old 03-31-2012, 09:52 AM - Thread Starter
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My parents just purchased a new house in Colorado, they are currently redoing some things including the basement/rec room. This room will be a multi-purpose room that also has a kitchenette and tables. The lighting is 100% controlled (all banks of lights on separate switches) and there are power shades on windows. The projector will never be on with full lights, there is a LCD TV for that, but it is feasible that the lights behind the projector could be on/dimmed.

The installer is pushing them on the Runco LS-5. I've done some reading and it seems to be a great projector. I've always been partial to LCos (JVC in particular). Can you guys help me with an alternative to the LS-5 in the sub $10K price range?

From what I've read the main benefit of the LS-5 would be brightness, especially if the lights in the back of the room are on.

Screen size will be between 100"-120", probably about 15' throw? Additionally the house is at about 9700ft, should that be a concern with traditional Lamps?
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post #2 of 29 Old 03-31-2012, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by BigZAJ View Post

My parents just purchased a new house in Colorado, they are currently redoing some things including the basement/rec room. This room will be a multi-purpose room that also has a kitchenette and tables. The lighting is 100% controlled (all banks of lights on separate switches) and there are power shades on windows. The projector will never be on with full lights, there is a LCD TV for that, but it is feasible that the lights behind the projector could be on/dimmed.

The installer is pushing them on the Runco LS-5. I've done some reading and it seems to be a great projector. I've always been partial to LCos (JVC in particular). Can you guys help me with an alternative to the LS-5 in the sub $10K price range?

From what I've read the main benefit of the LS-5 would be brightness, especially if the lights in the back of the room are on.

Screen size will be between 100"-120", probably about 15' throw? Additionally the house is at about 9700ft, should that be a concern with traditional Lamps?

Something along the lines of a JVC DLA-X70 (or virtually identical DLA-RS55) or Sony VPL-VW95 (both retail for well under $10K and in the same price range as the Runco LS-5) are good LCoS alternatives to the Runco LS-5. The LS-5 while a good projector is Runco's entry level model and the above JVC and Sony models our certainly higher end models with more features and in some ways, such as black level and contrast ratio, better performance. At your parent's elevation you would need to operate the projector in high altitude mode (runs the fan at higher speed). The calibrated lumens output (i.e., when operated in best picture mode) on the Runco LS-5 is actually a little lower than either the JVC or Sony. Check out projectorreviews.com where all 3 of these projectors have been reviewed.

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post #3 of 29 Old 03-31-2012, 10:09 PM - Thread Starter
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The JVC DLA-X70R is designed for a dedicated home theatre / cave. If you don't have such a room, and are looking for a projector for a family room with off white walls and windows, this JVC probably is not for you.

ThiS is the first sentence from projectorreviews.com, everything my room is is everything they say this projector is not for.
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post #4 of 29 Old 04-01-2012, 08:30 AM
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ThiS is the first sentence from projectorreviews.com, everything my room is is everything they say this projector is not for.

If your environment will not take advantage of a high quality projector, you should not spend a lot if you are not willing to darken your environment. I remember when I had my first projector, Panasonic ae3000 and I had white walls, ceilings, and light carpet. I loved it, the picture was amazing. Everyone on the forum kept advicing me to darken my environment to take advantage of my $3k projector. I didn't want to listen, but finally I just put a black area rug under the screen, and it was a noticeable difference. Then, I decided to put a black sheet above on the ceiling to see how it would be with black ceilings. Major, major difference, I didn't know it could look so good. So, I darken my theater, just by testing it out with a black sheet. My $400 Acer looks better in my darken theater than when I had my $3K panny with a white environment.

So, if you don't have an environment to take advantage of a $2k+ projector, I don't think you should go to expensive. However, certain screens will help but not like darkening your environment
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post #5 of 29 Old 04-02-2012, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by BigZAJ View Post

ThiS is the first sentence from projectorreviews.com, everything my room is is everything they say this projector is not for.

That is a BS blanket statement. When purchasing a front projector, here are some key points to know:

1. Front projectors work best with NO ambient light. The more you have, the worse the image will look. Part of this is that black levels and contrast, need dark to create. Remember black is actually the absence of light. If you have a "perfect" projector with pure black, once you turn on lights at any level, that is no longer black and your contrast will drop. That being said, the higher the contrast you start with, the slower the effect of ambient light will have, to a certain degree.
2. Light output is also important, which is what I think the reviewer was implying. But why I said it is BS is that the JVC, though not the highest light output option, is still fairly bright, and similar to others in its class. In fact really high output projectors that still perform well for HT, are over your budget. Plus, light output is only a rating from a projector. Say the JVC is really 1300 lumens, and you have another model that is 1500 lumens (whatever it might be). The 1500 lumen projector on the exact same screen should in theory be brighter, but if it were on a larger screen, that may not be the case. It is all relative to the amount of surface area you are lighting...thus why the blanket statement is wrong. I should also add that a 1000 lumen projector will NOT appear 2x as bright as a 500 lumen... Not how the eye perceives it.

So there are some things to consider. The LS5 is a good projector, but very different than a JVC. Each has pros and cons, but really either will work best with the room as dark as possible.

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post #6 of 29 Old 04-02-2012, 06:36 AM - Thread Starter
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The room has the ability to go dark. The walls are a light brown color and the ceiling as well. Carpet is medium shade. Windows have power blackout shades. I prefer the look of LCos over DLP personally but I want to make sure I get something that will be somewhat versatile and operate fine at 10K feet.

The only reason I gave thought to the Runco is it was claimed to be very bright in the review. I wanted to make sure the JVC is sufficiently bright to be viewable if the room is partially lit, not at reference levels, just viewable.
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post #7 of 29 Old 04-02-2012, 08:53 AM
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If the installer is capable and is integrating everything, it is sometimes wise not to impose on him demands for products he does not normally support. If you question his recommendation and he does not offer a reasonable explanation as to why he's specifying a particular projector, perhaps your parents would be better served by another installer. If you don't trust a doctor's prescription, you can always seek another opinion. But it would be foolish to tell the doctor what medicine you think he should be proscribing.
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post #8 of 29 Old 04-02-2012, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by BigZAJ View Post

ThiS is the first sentence from projectorreviews.com, everything my room is is everything they say this projector is not for.

You say the room can be fully light controlled and that is the most important thing. To really benefit from a very high contrast projector (with its very low black levels) the room must be kept very very dark (i.e.,, full light control). This is true for any projector, including the JVC, that has very deep blacks (but the best black level on the screen can only be achieved if other light sources are not lighting up the screen). Of course having walls and ceiling painted a dark color can also benefit to create an ideal home theater environment.

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post #9 of 29 Old 04-02-2012, 07:02 PM
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I have demo'ed a Runco LS-5 recently and also owned a JVC RS60. Runco advantages are are
a) higher light output
b) great color accuracy and greyscale out of the box
c) better ANSI contrast & "sharper" picture especially for sports
d) an easy to use CMS - JVC has had problems with their CMS on 50/60 ..dont' know if it's any better on the newer models

JVC RS60 has better low light detail and is quieter than Runco.

Both are really good projectors but if you have a 120 in wide screen i think the runco will work better than the JVC IMO.
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post #10 of 29 Old 04-04-2012, 08:00 PM
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I own a Planar PD8150 which is what the LS-5 was before Planar bought Runco and renamed it to the LS-5 a few years later. If you're worried about black level performance you shouldn't worry too much. The LS-5 is fantastic. It's on par with Sony's 90ES and just as good if not a tad better than the JVC RS45. I've seen an RS45 at a friends house and I was able to compare to the Sony at a local dealer. If you go with the mid or higher range JVC you will notice a difference, though.

As others have said, the LS-5 is better suited, compared to the JVCs, for larger screens. The only real downside to the LS-5, in my opinion, is that it runs a tad loud when you take it out of economy lamp mode and put it on full blast. If your room is small or you're planning on placing the projector close to you just know you might notice it during really quiet scenes. I rarely notice mine, but occasionally during quiet scenes it stands out a tad but its literally 2 feet behind me on a shelf. If placed far enough away or in a soffit/hushbox you'll be fine. The bulbs also last FOREVER in this thing. They use high quality OSRAM bulbs. I just switched mine out at ~2000 hours and its still very bright for being that old. JVCs have a notoriously bad track record.

If anything, check out a JVC personally before you make a decision. I used to own a JVC RS20 and I'm MUCH happier with my Planar.
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post #11 of 29 Old 04-05-2012, 01:50 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm actually leaning towards the Sony 95ES because I am not a huge DLP fan. Thoughts on that projector and this application?
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post #12 of 29 Old 04-05-2012, 02:39 PM
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what kind of screen are they installing? specifically the gain. Most screens are going be 1.0 or similar unless a high gain model is specifically chosen.

The 95 is a nice projector, but it doesn't have a ton of lumens @ D65 and the lamps will dim with age, so the out of the box brightness is as good as it gets and declines from there.

For this environment with some ambient light on occasion, I would recommend a brighter projector such as the Epson 5010/6010. Both models have a black level similar to the 95 and the 3D is going to be brighter with less ghosting than the 95. It has a 'living room' mode than can crank out nearly 2000 lumens which is more than double what the Sony and JVC can handle at their brightest. The living room mode colors will be off a bit, but most people aren't going to complain since image brightness is often associated with image quality for common folks. When the lights are out, you can put it in 'cinema mode' (still 900+ lumens) and the IQ looks great. I've calibrated the living room mode to near D65 and it still puts out 1400+ lumens which is excellent.

you don't have to go far to find high ratings for the Epson this year. At it's relatively low price, it's one of the sleepers this year in regard to image quality, brightness and 3D capabilities.

http://www.displaycalibrationonline...._epson5010.asp

If you can accommodate a screen like the dalite high power, then your options are more open for ~120 with a lower output projector. This particular screen requires that the projector be mounted near or close to eye level, not the typical ceiling mounted position you might be familiar with. This allows the material to reflect back the most light towards the viewer due to the properties of the high gain screen material.
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post #13 of 29 Old 04-05-2012, 02:52 PM
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The Epson 5010 is a fantastic choice. If you don't want to do DLP the Epson is a good alternative. It's going to be quite a bit brighter than the 95ES and anything JVC is offering.
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post #14 of 29 Old 04-05-2012, 04:58 PM
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Having owned both the Runco LS5 and the Epson 6010. The Runco is far better then the Epson 6010 in every way. The Runco is very good and is plenty bright. Yes the Epson is bright but the picture in those bright modes are not very good. I thought the color with the Runco was fantastic with a super sharp image. I can still see a bit of a screen door effect with the Epson. As far as noise the Epson is not the quietest thing around but the Runco maybe a touch louder.

Having owned a lot of good projectors I realize that sharpness and motion handling is very very important to me. I now own a Mits HC9000 Advance and love it.
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post #15 of 29 Old 04-05-2012, 11:19 PM
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Having owned both the Runco LS5 and the Epson 6010. The Runco is far better then the Epson 6010 in every way. The Runco is very good and is plenty bright. Yes the Epson is bright but the picture in those bright modes are not very good. I thought the color with the Runco was fantastic with a super sharp image. I can still see a bit of a screen door effect with the Epson. As far as noise the Epson is not the quietest thing around but the Runco maybe a touch louder.

Having owned a lot of good projectors I realize that sharpness and motion handling is very very important to me. I now own a Mits HC9000 Advance and love it.

I'm curious how'd you'd compare the LS-5 to the Mits HC9000D? I know it uses Sony's new SXRD panels which should help tremendously with motion. What do you prefer on the Mits over the Runco? I'm assuming you like the Mits more otherwise you'd still have the Runco.
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post #16 of 29 Old 04-05-2012, 11:31 PM
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Having owned both the Runco LS5 and the Epson 6010. The Runco is far better then the Epson 6010 in every way. I can still see a bit of a screen door effect with the Epson. A

Yah, the lower pixel fill ratio of LCD is still an issue to some folks at times, but depends how close you sit. I like DLP generally better than most LCD as well. I'm sure the Runco is better than the Epson generally in 2D, but it's a LOT more expensive as well. The JVC RS-45 however does have darker blacks than the Runco LS-5.

I think people judge it by seeing the IRIS close on a near all-black scene and comparing it to the JVC and thinking well that's not much difference, that's true because IRIS's work better when there is very little white in the image, but the truth is when you take an average starfield type image, the JVC shines on those quite a bit higher than Epson or any DLP. I've seen my JVC next to other projectors with varying contrast ratios, so I know how the IRIS'd ones can compare. On an all black or near all black scene, many projectors can compete with the JVC, it's when you are watching movies like Harry Potter where the higher On/Off of the JVC jumps ahead. For instance, I've yet to see a fireworks show at night look as good on any projector as it does on the JVC. Different types of dark scenes will just bring out different attributes of projectors, same with different types of bright scenes. Tree of Life is a really good test disc for both, boring movie, but good test disc.

The Runco has some advantages over the JVC though even the JVC RS-45 has it beat in blacks easily (and I am sure on that), so it's going to be more the cleanliness in the processing of the Runco and better motion (which in essence can appear sharper at times) vs. the darker blacks of the JVC.


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post #17 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 06:14 AM
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Yes I like the HC9000 better then the Runco in 2D. It's very sharp and has very good blacks. I prefer blacks with very good detail not just jet blacks. The motion handling is very very good with the HC9000. I watch a lot of sports and the HC9000 does a very good job with sharpness and motion. I had a Masters party yesterday with 8 other guys and they were all in shock at how good it was. 2 guys are now going to build a theater and another guy was going to buy a HC9000 to replace his old Sim2 720P. We even turned on 3D for a bit and that looked great but I didn't have enough glasses. I watch very little 3D having young kids so it was cool to watch some 3D.

I owned the RS40 but not the RS45 and yes the blacks are very black but it feels inky to me. I had that the same time as the LS5 and the LS5 was better. My biggest complaint with the Runco is it's to loud. I sit right under the projector and when watching golf and other events you can really hear it. I can't hear the HC9000.
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Generally speaking, the DLP's will be better than the LCD's...assuming similar levels. There are some really cheap DLP's, but the better ones like the Runco, will have benefits. LCD's tend to be somewhat brighter, but quality is lower, non-sealed optical paths, higher pixel gap, lower contrast, etc...

I do agree with Pete that if the installer is pushing something and cannot back it up, he may have a unknown (to you) motive. You may be served well to shop around...

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post #19 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by mtdking View Post

I prefer blacks with very good detail not just jet blacks.

What area stood out the most between the Runco and RS-40?

I think the Runco has less noise, a smoother image as a result, and better motion, but what else or was that why you preferred the Runco?

There are gamma issues on the JVC sometimes, the shadow detail by default can be pretty lacking with some of the gamma settings. You can make the blacks look however you want though, it's just calibration.


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Yes I like the HC9000 better then the Runco in 2D. It's very sharp and has very good blacks. I prefer blacks with very good detail not just jet blacks. The motion handling is very very good with the HC9000. I watch a lot of sports and the HC9000 does a very good job with sharpness and motion. I had a Masters party yesterday with 8 other guys and they were all in shock at how good it was. 2 guys are now going to build a theater and another guy was going to buy a HC9000 to replace his old Sim2 720P. We even turned on 3D for a bit and that looked great but I didn't have enough glasses. I watch very little 3D having young kids so it was cool to watch some 3D.

I owned the RS40 but not the RS45 and yes the blacks are very black but it feels inky to me. I had that the same time as the LS5 and the LS5 was better. My biggest complaint with the Runco is it's to loud. I sit right under the projector and when watching golf and other events you can really hear it. I can't hear the HC9000.

That's good to know. I have to agree with the blacks on the LS-5. While there are certain scenes in some movies where the JVC has a slight edge, overall I preferred the blacks on my PD8150 (LS-5). ANSI contrast is MUCH higher on the LS-5 compared to any of what JVC has to offer, which really helps give a better 2D experience. On/Off contrast measurements really shouldn't come into play as much as people want them to when deciding on a projector.
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post #21 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 03:20 PM
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What area stood out the most between the Runco and RS-40?

I think the Runco has less noise, a smoother image as a result, and better motion, but what else or was that why you preferred the Runco?

There are gamma issues on the JVC sometimes, the shadow detail by default can be pretty lacking with some of the gamma settings. You can make the blacks look however you want though, it's just calibration.

Have you had the chance to see an LS-5? If you haven't I'm sure there are tons of dealers with one set up around you. Having seen both and owning one, I can tell you that in most cases blacks are darker on the LS-5. The LS-5 also tracks almost dead on to D65 out of the box and will only get better with some light calibration. It has fantastic video processing and tack sharp image. My impressions of the RS45 are high but I don't think the color fidelity is anywhere near the LS-5s. The JVC has no dynamic iris which makes for a perfectly stable image but the LS-5 has an almost perfect dynamic iris solution. They have tweaked algorithms that just work as if the DI wasn't even there. The JVC has FAR better placement flexibility and is much cheaper. You can get 90% what the LS-5 offers for a few grand less. That is by far the biggest strength of the JVC.
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post #22 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 03:39 PM
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On/Off contrast measurements really shouldn't come into play as much as people want them to when deciding on a projector.

We just disagree. I have seen a bunch of different DLP's, but you can't go walking into a showroom and go, ok this one has darker blacks. You have to side-by-side it watching different content and also measure it. The RS-45 can do near 50,000:1 Native on/off with the IRIS closed at farthest throw. Native On/Off does not really lie when it comes to black levels, the RS-45 setup properly with the IRIS closed and the projector at farthest throw will not be touched by a DLP. IRIS's cannot make up that much difference in all scenes, doesn't matter how good the IRIS is. The IRIS certainly will help, but it won't be as smooth as the JVC's blacks nor will it be as good on most scenes.

DLP's are better for some things, but black levels aren't one of them, don't care if it is a RUNCO or not.


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post #23 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 04:06 PM
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We just disagree. I have seen a bunch of different DLP's, but you can't go walking into a showroom and go, ok this one has darker blacks. You have to side-by-side it watching different content and also measure it. The RS-45 can do near 50,000:1 Native on/off with the IRIS closed at farthest throw. Native On/Off does not really lie when it comes to black levels, the RS-45 setup properly with the IRIS closed and the projector at farthest throw will not be touched by a DLP. IRIS's cannot make up that much difference in all scenes, doesn't matter how good the IRIS is. The IRIS certainly will help, but it won't be as smooth as the JVC's blacks nor will it be as good on most scenes.

DLP's are better for some things, but black levels aren't one of them, don't care if it is a RUNCO or not.

I think its hard to walk into a showroom that has not been calibrated correctly. I remember walking into Best Buy and seeing how horrid the picture looked. It wasn't even setup with a hdmi cable will using a blu ray player. The color profile wasn't acceptable and I'm sure it wasn't calibrated. Not say that all are like that. But it you could see something you considering set up in a HT room, then no other opinion matters is yours. I know if I seen a JVC RS55 out of the box, rather than calibrated, my thoughts on it would be different. Even in my HT, my RS55 out of the box and calibrated is two different images. Also, there are some members opinions that I trust who have a good eye for different projectors and who have seen them calibrated. I even live close to one of the avs members, joerod, that I consider is valid based on his experience. Plus, I can go see them myself and see then setup and calibrated properly.
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post #24 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 04:33 PM
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As much as I like the look of the Runco Q750. You will never get me to say the black levels match the JVCs..it ain't gonna happen. And I love the image the big Runco throws!
The colors are still the best I've seen for sure. It did almost everything right. The contrast was also extremely good. Just not JVC good. That sucker was noisy too.
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post #25 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 06:18 PM
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The colors on the runco has better pop and depth to the picture over the RS40 but the motion handling was what stood out most. Motion handling is very important to me having 4 Plasma throughout the house. Not all DLP are the same. I also had a Sim2 HT380 and that didn't have many flaws just needed to brighter same thing with my Marantz VP11S2. Once you see these brighter calibrated projectors it's hard to watch a dimmer projector.

Having had the Epson 6010 I will say it gets to much credit here on these threads.
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post #26 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 07:06 PM
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For some people the LCD look bothers them more than others. There is a guy in the other thread (Bob I think is his name) that swears by the Epson 5010/6010 and says it is better than his JVC RS-35.

I don't always agree with people, but I try to respect their opinions. The one thing that does irk me though is when some guy posts with a 150" screen to a new person and says "Dude it's so bright, don't worry". I am thinking yah you can watch anything at any brightness, but that doesn't mean it's at an optimal level. I must be really sensitive to brightness changes because I almost immediately notice a lamp dimming, I start wanting to open the aperture up to get back to where I was. I can even watch 18 fL or a little brighter and not be bothered, but sometimes it just depends what I'm watching. I've watched 25+ fL for a while on a new lamp on my VS, but that actually did hurt my eyes a little, but I made it through it.


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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seegs108 View Post

The Epson 5010 is a fantastic choice. If you don't want to do DLP the Epson is a good alternative. It's going to be quite a bit brighter than the 95ES and anything JVC is offering.

Agree that the 5010 is brighter than 95ES, but in 2D the 5010 and the RS45 are about the same.

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post #28 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 09:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coderguy View Post

We just disagree. I have seen a bunch of different DLP's, but you can't go walking into a showroom and go, ok this one has darker blacks. You have to side-by-side it watching different content and also measure it. The RS-45 can do near 50,000:1 Native on/off with the IRIS closed at farthest throw. Native On/Off does not really lie when it comes to black levels, the RS-45 setup properly with the IRIS closed and the projector at farthest throw will not be touched by a DLP. IRIS's cannot make up that much difference in all scenes, doesn't matter how good the IRIS is. The IRIS certainly will help, but it won't be as smooth as the JVC's blacks nor will it be as good on most scenes.

DLP's are better for some things, but black levels aren't one of them, don't care if it is a RUNCO or not.

I get what you're saying. I haven't had a side by side comparison of the two and I'm going off of memory and the impression I got from either. The impression I got was that the LS-5 (PD8150) has at least on par blacks in the majority of scenes.

What I don't understand is how a LOT of people act like the blackest blacks should be the only consideration when looking for a projector when there are so many more characteristics to the picture as a whole. I loved my JVC RS20 and I had that for about 6 months watching it on a daily basis. I know JVC makes a solid product for the money. I just happen to think the PD8150/LS-5 does almost everything a notch higher while having pretty much equal black level performance.
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post #29 of 29 Old 04-06-2012, 09:17 PM
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It does depend on what someone is using their projector for. The dark blacks certainly don't help in all movies or all that much all the time, but in some stuff it does really make a difference. The DLP is better in some ways. I also own a DLP, and I use it more than my JVC to keep the lamp hours down. The DLP I have is not nearly in the same league as a RUNCO, but the Runcos are really expensive new and probably shouldn't even be compared to the RS-45 given the price difference.


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