My AE-8000 arrived today. Being that it's winter, I unboxed it and let it sit for 8 hours to warm up to room temperature, and let any humidity inside evaporate.
Hooked it up, turned on, let it warm up for 45 minutes with various material while I did the initial setup configuration. Then started to eval and dial it in. At first, thought I was seeing problems. 2 primary ones, (1) I set the focus using the built-in lens test pattern, and center looked in focus, but bottom not. And (2) thought I was seeing white bloom. Looked like there might be small haze inside the lens front, like condensation. Kept it turned on to let the heat work.
At the 4 hour mark, I was still testing and calibrating and not sure whether there were problems or not. Had to decide whether to go for a return, but I had to give it a chance for calibration, so I kept going. As I worked and the PJ warmed up with time, the image got even better. I'm upgrading from a PT-AE2000 that I've had for the last 7+ years. The 2000 had come out of the box and needed zero calibration--checked multiple times, and it was right on the money. The new 8000, though... wow, it was way off. Used the Spears & Munsil HD calibration disc. Now I have contrast -11, brightness +1, Color -8, Tint +2, color temp +2, Sharpness +2. I think the wrong contrast had contributed to the white bloom.
Now I've got 8 hours on it, and it's looking real good. Here's my initial impressions:
1. Upgrading from the AE2000, this was absolutely worth it and a no-brainer for the $1499 sale price of last couple weeks.
2. Much brighter than the AE-2000
3. Yes, why go back to a shift-adjustment stick? Cheap, and a step backwards, even from my AE-2000
4. Lamp fan was MUCH louder than my AE-2000. But then I put it in Eco mode, and now it's MUCH quieter than the 2000. Fantastic.
5. For some reason, when switching source inputs, the fan kicks into high gear. Really loud. Then drops back into silent Eco mode with new source. Same thing when the 8000 stays on the same HDMI input, but my A/V receiver switches sources it's sending to it.
6. I still occasionally get the sense there is a bit of white bloom, but not quite sure
7. Occasionally, vivid blues and reds also seem to bloom, but not greens. Like on Sports Center, some shots of Kentucky's blue uniforms had bloom.
8. Yes, I had red-push on my gray scale too, which was odd. Putting the color temp at +2 looks right.
9. Oddly, I'm occasionally seeing some tiny motion judder, like there's a 120Hz motion processor trying to smooth out motion. I didn't think the 8000 was 120Hz.
10. 3D looks good. PS3 glasses worked great in the 5 minute demo I did, especially for the $7.50 Amazon price I paid. They're definitely highly rear-reflective, though. In my pitch black enclosed theater, they were still reflecting ambient light from the rear of the room.
Hopefully everything stays in the positive direction as I get it dialed in and get usage time. But happy so far.
Last edited by Chris Dotur; 02-17-2015 at 08:22 AM.