I think all of us have asked ourselves this question at one point or another. Especially with electronics and the rapid advancement that has been made in the last 10+ years. Well, I face this dilemma right now regarding my projector and I have debated with myself - back and forth ... yes, no, yes, no .... on and on. I have been researching online for a while now (ever since I started building my second theater in 2011) reading this board and professional reviews of all the latest, greatest projectors. Even with all the great advancements in technology such as 3D, CFI, increases in contrast, black color improvements, etc. I keep circling back to my initial question...
Is it worth the upgrade to a new projector from what I currently have?
I know, I know, "worth" is subjective and what is worth it to some is not for others. Not looking for a definitive answer, but looking for advice from those that have upgraded in the last year or so. I want to understand if it will be like "Yes, you will see improvement in video playback , yes you will be blown away with the picture quality, yes you will see details you've never seen before." or will it be more like "yeah video quality will improve a little, but these days its more about the extra features - 3d, etc, etc."
So I come to the board to help with your experiences, broad knowledge, and various opinions to set me straight and pull me out of the swirling abyss called "indecision."
In order to do so, I expect you will need background of where I am and what I'm looking for.Current State:
Dedicated home theater that is completely light controlled. Used primarily (99%) for movies - all Blu-ray movies from my HTPC (I don't crud it with that low quality bull j/k
). My current projector in the Mitsubishi HC4900
1080P with 800 hours. I brought this with me from my previous theater several years ago, but low hours due to house sale/move/live in temp living/buy house/build new theater.... you know normal life stuff. I like the projector and always have (great reviews at the time) - I know the limitations (blacks) but I have always been impressed with the picture quality... but I can't get away from the feeling that I am missing something.Rest of theater info: (pertaining to projector needs)
120" wide 2.35:1 Centerstage XD AT screen
Throw distance = 17 feet
Screen wall is black (false fabric wall), ceiling is black ... aw heck you can look at it through my link in my sig. below.Family use/need of the theater:
99.99999999999999% hi def movies (no TV, cable, satellite, regular DVD's, laser disc, VHS, Beta ...etc)
Not big into 3D and really don't see going in that direction ... although you never know.
When I measure the luminance with Spyder 2/Calman4, I'm reading 6 fL normal lamp, and 4.4 fL low lamp. Yeah - these are low, but honestly seem ok to me? Alright, I think a little brighter would be nice. According to calibrated specs, the HC4900 puts out approx. 620 lumens in normal cinema mode. (I think most new projectors calibrated to rec709 are in the 600 - 800 lumens)Ok my Budget: $3000 range
Are projectors in this budget range going to offer that much more for what I'm looking for - better sharpness, better detail, better contrast, better blacks, more pop, brighter picture (to get to that magical 12 - 14 fL). In other words - is it worth the upgrade?
or would I be paying for the other options that I really don't want/need (3D, smooth motion, ultra bright modes for ambient light use, etc.).
Alright gang lets hear it.