Still trying to decide: BenQ 8700 vs. Optoma H56 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 44 Old 01-11-2004, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
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I know these are two very different machines, but I'm consdering buying the BenQ 8700 -- and that's a large investment compared to my Panasonic PT-L500U.

The lower-priced Optoma H56 seems like a really great alternate projector.

Can anyone tell me what shortcomings besides Resolution i'll have to deal with if I go with the Optoma H56 instead of the BenQ 8700?

Also, does anyone think the BenQ 8700 will drop in price even more since the 8710 will be coming out at about the same price?

My screen size is a brilliant-white 1.4 gain 2.35:1 115" diagonal screen, and my seating distance is about 10 feet back (front row) and 14 feet back (back row) I know the front row will suffer from some screen door, but that's their problem :-)

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post #2 of 44 Old 01-11-2004, 04:12 PM
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Joe... Dude... 115" at 10 feet?!? Spend the extra and get the BenQ, you would see pixel structure for sure with the Matterhorn, heck you will probably see it on the BenQ, but it will be much more pronounced on the H56.

The 8710 probably wont be out until April, then you will probably see a price decrease.

BTW, I made a similar jump from the 2HD (Z2) to the BenQ and I couldn't be happier. Worth every penny (er.. thousands :) ) extra I had to spend.

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post #3 of 44 Old 01-11-2004, 06:44 PM
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- The H56's DVI input is not HDCP-compliant (the BenQ PE8700's is.)

- Some versions/firmwares of the H56 have problems with 1080i (but not 720p) input and display glitches. The earlier ones are better.

- The H56 suffers in shadow detail... doesn't it?

* The H56 has a Sil504 for deinterlacing, which is great, but the BENQ PE8700 has it too. (Edit: new text in italics, replacing my erroneous statement.)

+ The H56 is brighter.

Because of your big screen at short distance, it seems reasonable to go 1280x720p: BenQ PE8700, Mitsubishi LVP-D2010 (aka BenQ H76), or Infocus 7200. You could also consider adding a lens to squeeze 4:3 XGA to 16:9 with a NEC HT-1000, NEC HT-1100, BenQ H56, or Dell 3200MP (aka Optoma 737). Hmmm, 2.35:1 screen, you say? Doesn't a 4:3 projector with 16:9 toggle (that doesn't "get stuck") give you the most flexibility with a lens and a 2.35:1 screen?

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post #4 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 07:54 AM - Thread Starter
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So, if I add my Panamorph lens to the Optoma H56, would the results be comparable to the BenQ 8700?

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post #5 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 09:25 AM - Thread Starter
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This is intriguing to me. Would I get the same performance (resolution-wise) with a H56 adding a Panamorph lens as I would get using the BenQ8700 without a lens?

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post #6 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 09:31 AM
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Joe, just wait till Cedia when somthing really sweet will come out ;)

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post #7 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 09:37 AM - Thread Starter
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"waiting is the hardest part"

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post #8 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 10:33 AM
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Since you already have an anamorphic lens, my advice is to pick up an XGA DLP pj (h56, ht1000 or whatever) and pocket the difference. For dvd's, this combo will be just as good as an HD2. Infact, you're getting 768 lines of vertical resolution instead of 720. This is a much more cost effective way to wait until a resonably priced 1080 finally comes out.


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post #9 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 10:44 AM - Thread Starter
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pocoloco,

Ofcourse, that's the answer I WANTED to hear! :-)

do you have a Z2? Or do you have a DLP projector? I'm worried that if I go with the H56, paired with my big screen and 14' seating distance, I'll see screendoor...

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post #10 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 10:59 AM
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About a month ago, I sold my Z2 and now have an HT1000 w/ an anamorphic lens. Picture is night and day different.

I don't think pixel structure with an XGA + anamorphic len combo will be considerably worse than the HD2. It'll be very close. I've seen HD2's but never in my own setup so I can't say definitively. But at 14 feet, I don't think it'll be a problem at all. Especially given that you've been watching LCD at this distance. Either way, you're going to see some pixel structure on certain scenes with an HD2 or XGA/anamorphic.

I'm right at about 1.3 -1.4 screen widths away. I can make out some pixel structure on few scenes... but most of the time, the image is very smooth.


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post #11 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 11:01 AM
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joe,

don't you have an anamorphic screen? with a hd2 projector and your panamorph you will use all 720 vertical pixels with anamorphic material. if you use a 4:3 projecter with your panamorph and watch anamorphic material you probably use less then 720.
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post #12 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 11:32 AM
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Joe, you already know the H56 will give you a beautiful picture from all the wow reviews. You have no worries with screen door with the panamorph and a 13' viewing distance with yr screen. You're main thought s/b do I mind spending $xxx more for the H56 over the Panasonic or $2xxx more for the BenQ. Come on buddy it's really a no brainier.

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post #13 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 11:46 AM
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Joe,

"Yes" is my answer to your question of if there'll be a price drop in the 8700 with the release of the 8710. You'll see some "Previously owned" 8700s on sale ;) perhaps one with a new bulb thrown in (depending on which bulb the 8710 uses.)

Still, I for one am in the camp of trying your panamorph with an H56. I viewed the HT1000 with no panamorph at about your distance and screen diameter, and could just make out pixels if I looked for them. It shouldn't be an issue with panamorph at 14'.

Dan
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post #14 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 11:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Speaking of the H56, I really like that it's a long-throw. I can put it behind my seating area and that should make the fan-noise less of an issue, right?

If I use the H56 in 16:9 mode, will I get light spill-over on the top and bottom since it's a 4:3 projector?

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post #15 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 12:44 PM
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All the 4.3's will hv the light spill just at different degrees. It's not as bad as the old LT150 days and the HT1000's spill is very light, same for the DT200, I'd imagine the H56 is light also. Of course dark walls will solve this problem or at least a darkend wall behind the screen.

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post #16 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 01:22 PM
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Joe, you have 2.35:1 screen and if you go with a 4x3 projector you will always have a light spill on top and bottom of the screen even with panamorph. I would stick to a 16x9 projector. I myself went thru many 4x3 projectors (Seleco, LT-150) and once I got my first 16x9 machine(Sony 10HT) I didn't want to go back. You own a 16x9 projector with a nice 2.35:1 setup (from your other posts) and in my opinion going to 4x3 would not really be an upgrade. I would go with an HD2 projector. I used to own a Sharp 10000 and it gave a beautiful picture comparable to BenQ. I upgraded to Sharp 12000 and I'm getting a panamorph for a 2.35 setup similar to yours.

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post #17 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 01:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input, Roman... you make a very good point.

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post #18 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 02:41 PM
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The H56 is not a "no brainer" pick, because it lacks HDCP on the DVI input. See DVI - a Practical Guide (by Arun Gupta).

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post #19 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 03:00 PM
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Didn't I also see on the Panamorph web site that there is a minimum throw distance for use with this lens? I was also considering a 4:3 DLP with the Panamorph over the Z2, but after doing some research, it looked like the Panamorph might start distorting and/or cropping at a 12' throw.

[edit] If this isn't true, please correct me since I still have time to cancel my Z2 :).
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post #20 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 03:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by Uther
Didn't I also see on the Panamorph web site that there is a minimum throw distance for use with this lens? I was also considering a 4:3 DLP with the Panamorph over the Z2, but after doing some research, it looked like the Panamorph might start distorting and/or cropping at a 12' throw.

[edit] If this isn't true, please correct me since I still have time to cancel my Z2 :).
Uther,

I just checked, and as long as your projector to screen distance is between 10 and 35 feet, you should be okay. Also, they recommend the throw distance of your projector to be a minimum of 1.65x.


And i'm not too concerned about DVI being HDCP, since I use a HTPC in my home theater. Is 1.1 mapping possible on the H56?

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post #21 of 44 Old 01-12-2004, 03:08 PM
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It's a money question. To go from the Pany to the H56 I didn't want to give numbers but here $850. To go to the BenQ $2500. For the $1700 dollar sayings I'd rather darken the back wall which is better anyway. HDCP just get a Bravo for DVD DVI, leave the component for a STB.

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post #22 of 44 Old 07-04-2004, 06:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Abdul Jalib
- The H56's DVI input is not HDCP-compliant (the BenQ PE8700's is.)

- Some versions/firmwares of the H56 have problems with 1080i (but not 720p) input and display glitches. The earlier ones are better.

- The H56 suffers in shadow detail... doesn't it?

* The H56 has a Sil504 for deinterlacing, which is great, but the BENQ PE8700 has it too. (Edit: new text in italics, replacing my erroneous statement.)

+ The H56 is brighter.
The H56A has just been released with firmware upgrade. As far as I understand which makes it 100% compatible with all formats, furthermore dvi input is now hdcp compliant.

I saw a demo this week of the H56A, but didn't notice an lack in shadow detail. It has Sil504 for deinterlacing and so has the 8700. But in Europe the H56a is € 1600 ($ 2000) cheaper than the BenQ which makes the choice rather easy.

Being a ex-CRT owner (just sold my Barco Data808s) I must say I am quite impressed with this H56 and I just ordered one for my HT.
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post #23 of 44 Old 07-05-2004, 12:18 AM
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any reason why you dont want to look at a ht1000/ht1100 ,
i sample both the h56 vs the ht1xxx and I found the nec product to be superiorpus is has everything the h56 has plus more

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post #24 of 44 Old 07-05-2004, 09:28 AM
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I'm not familiair with the HT1xxx series, but the HT1100 is $ 1300 more expensive than the H56a over here in Europe. Furthermore, I've checked out a couple of reviews on various sites and the H56 seems to win it fairly easy. Most of the reviews talk about the good scaler, its 'magnificent' interlacing and very good colours.

And the price really makes the competition hurt....
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post #25 of 44 Old 07-05-2004, 07:45 PM
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Frans,
Are you SURE the DVI is HDCP compliant on the "new" H56A. I was wanting to buy the H56A but decided against it because of this.
Are you sure? I was told different.
Thanks.........

Monday......6 days a week???
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post #26 of 44 Old 07-06-2004, 10:33 AM
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Hello Wiredman,

The "new" 56A is HDCP compliant. I just contacted my dealer to verify this because of the doubts you might be having. He informed me that this was 1 of the reasons to launch the 56A model.

So, will you now consider buying the 56A anyway ?
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post #27 of 44 Old 07-06-2004, 10:40 AM
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Check out the BenQ PE7800.

Looks Great. Priced Right.
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post #28 of 44 Old 07-06-2004, 04:33 PM
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Frans and Joe,
If you're SURE about the DVI being HDCP compliant then I'm sold. A VERY good source told me that the DVI wasn't HDCP, so I'm concerned. If you can try yours out when it comes in, and let me know, then we will know for sure. (Thanx for the info) If not, I"ll wait until CEDIA as Tyrg suggests for something new.................except waiting is the hardest part...............

Monday......6 days a week???
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post #29 of 44 Old 07-06-2004, 07:08 PM
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One more question........I was able to go to a friends and see the Mitsu XD300U tonight. It was a beautiful picture and I have no complaints with it. We watched some DVD's only. Okay, now the question...........How will the H56A look compaired to the XD300U? Will the picture be night and day? Has anyone seen them both?
Thanx.................H56A........DVI???????......HDCP?????? ??

Monday......6 days a week???
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post #30 of 44 Old 07-06-2004, 08:07 PM
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XD300U old "wheel technology" most complain of "real" rainbows!
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