Hello again everyone. I had a post on that was very actvie for about 1 year, but I went away for a while, and I guess its been removed for beeing inactve. So let me fill you in, and give you all an update.
What's a HUGHES JVC ILA?
Well its not a new technology, as a matter of fact its quite old. Im sure everyone knows about D-ILA, which is JVC's implemetation of LCOS. If you dont know what D-ILA and LCOS are, do some searching on it because its a great alternitve to LCD and even DLP projector technology. D-ILA is Digital-Image-Light-Amplilfication. ILA is the about 15 year technolgy that is the analog version.Don't HUGHES make air craft? Why would they be in the projector buesiness?
Yes, and they are not any more, but 15 years ago the military needed to build flight simulator video projectors that where able to project high-res, extreemly bright, color images onto a dome. This tooks some amazing technology to pull off, and thats why HUGHES was involved. These are turelly military grade projectors.
Why would anyone want a 15 year projector is isint based on today's digital technology?
#1 - Extreemly high res, up to and beyond 1080p, no problem.
#2 - Extreemly bright, up to 12,000 lumens on the very high-end model.
#3 - Because they are now obsoleet, they are dirt cheep. ($500 - $2000 used)WHAT? A 1080p full res projector at 6000 lumens for under $100,000???? Why dont I have one of these now, why did it go out of production, whats the catch?
Sadly, there are indeed a lot of catch's on doing something like this for home use.
First and formost is the size of the unit. Its about the same size as your average snow-mobile. It weights in at just under 400 pound.
Next is the venting - My unit at full power prodcues about 16,000 BTUS of heat, and that heat if not properly vented will cause issues with the reliablity.
Next is the power requirements - 240 vots, signal phase (comptable with home power) but draws in at beween 25 amps on the low site, and up to 35 amps on the high side. This is an extreem amount of power draw for anything in a residential envirement.
Next is finding parts, including the very exotic and rather dangers xenon arc lamp.
Finialy, and this cant be understated enough, is the VERY VERY VERY difficult calibration procedure that takes 100's of hours to tweeking to get it just right.OK, how in the world can you get 1080p at 6000 or more lumens, how dose it work?
This technology is a cross between an old CRT 3 gun projector and a LCD projetor using a white light souce to drive the output.
CRT projectors offer two huge advantages over today's bulb based projectors, and they are HIGH RES, and unbeatable BLACK LEVEL. But CRT's have a HUGH dissadvantage over todays projectors and that is brightness sucks. A really good CRT unit might be able to do 700 lumens, and if you have the room, you could stack two or more of them up, and get maybe 2000 lumens from CRT projectors all showign the same picture. But in order to get any brightness out of a CRT you have to drive the hell out of it, causing it to have a short life span. Also, if you drive it too far, you sacrafice foucus because and over-driven CRT gets blurry.
LCD/DLP projectors take a different approach to video projection. They using digital plates with pixels on then and shine bright red green and blue light thu the plates (lcd) or chips with tiny mirrors and shine the rgb lights onto the mirrors. The advantage to this apporach is that the light on the screen comes from a bulb, and thus only the brightness of the buld is the factor that control the lumens. Zero problems with focus, and no lenghy convergence issues as you would have with CRT systems. Most of us have this type of system active in our homes now.
The big problem with LCD/DLP is that up until just the past year or so, most of them are 4:3 native. When you put them into 16:9 your loosing about 1/3rd of you total number of lines avaible to make up the screen. If your lucky enough to have a 16:9 native DLP system you dont have this probelm. The other thing I noticed is that almost all of these are 720p units, and a lot of those unit wont do the ture 1280x720. If you want 1920 x 1080---there are like only a few choices, and they are all extreemly big bucks. ($15000 - $30000---and most of those units run under 1000 total lumens!!! ACK!!)
What if it would be possible to take all of the full-res of a CRT projetor, and combine it with the full brighness of today's digital projectors. Well, thats exacly what this unit dose.
There are two magic parts to this technolgy. Sadly, they where both VERY VERY expesnive to manufacture, as a matter of fact the 6000 lumen unit I have in my house cost $160,000 new. The main reason the price is so high is because of the two magic parts.
#1 - The ILA.
#2 - The Prismatic polorized beam splitter.
The ILA is a crytal plate that has only two wires on it. (unlike the D-ILA plates that have millions of pixels, the analog ila plate has no pixes (and thus no screen-door effect---AT ALL, even D-ILA's have a screen door effect, but you have to be sittign right at the screen to see it).
This crystal plate has two sides, and front side and a back side. The back sides is dark, and obsorbes photons. The other side is a mirror, reflectiing back 100% of the photons that hit it. What makes this part magic is that for every photn on the back(dark) side of the plate, the reflected mirror side will horizontially polarize the refelected light, dependig on the birghtness of the photon on the back side, will determin how much horizonal polarization the reflected light gets polarized.
The prism is a three port device. There is an source input port on the top, that very bright green light, or red light, or blue light shines down. (three are 3 seperate primis, one for each RGandB). There is an IN/OUT port.
At this point, 100% of the bright green light flows from in IN port at the top, and flows OUT the in/out port. This is shined onto the mirror side of the ILA.
Since its a mirror, 100% of this bight green light is reflective back INTO the in/out port, and if any of this refelected light happes to be polorized horitontally, its allowed to pass to the OUTPUT port---where its passed thru the projection lense onto the screen.
I know this is hard to visulaize, but the CRT for GREEN has a full res picture (low brightness---remember the CRT dose not project light onto the screnn) of what is to be GREEN on the screen, and this picture is shown onto the black side of the ila.
Bright green light is shown down the prism, shot out to the ila, and is modulated horizontally based on picture of whats on the back of the ila plate. All the bright green light is reflected back into the in/out port, some of it polarized, some of it not---only the polorized stuff (determined by the green crt) gets passed thru.
While all this is happening for green, its also happening for red and blue on seperate crts, ilas, and prisms.OK, sounds complex, witha all that going on, what kinda picture quality dose this thing acutally do?
If its done right, simply put, its the very best projected picture I'v ever seen any place any where anytime.
Black level and contrast ratio are not as good as the $50,000 units, comming in at a max of 1200:1 (if your extreemly lucky), but even at 200:1 when your talking about peek white levels over 5000 ansi lumens, its still just an amazing picture.
Keep in mind this model is designd for a 50 FOOT screen size. Im doing about 15 foot, and so its acutally way TOO bright for my envirmonet, but you can control that at the lamp power suply.How much dose a replacement bulb cost, how long do you get out of it?
The retail price was $15,000 for the bulb in its housing, youd send it to JVC and they would relamp it for you. At full power the buld will be at 80% of full brightness at 1000 hours of burn time. My bulb is a 3000 watt xenon arc lamp.
Im only running at about 1000 watts due to the smaller screen size. (smaller then 50 feet!!). My run time should be much longer.
JVC no longer supports this model, but luckly there is a company in Maryland that can provide not only re-lamping, but support and all parts. Relamping a 360 unit thru him will be much less. He gives quotes if your in need.Can you hook up HDTV, DVD, Tivo and other home electronics to it?
Video/Svideo ports are provided, but only support SDTV at 480i. There is no built in scaler at all, so you will turelly get 480i lines, and fully see scan-lines. If your going to use NTSC video, dont even bother with this projector, as it will look horrid.
HDTV/COMPUTER inputs are done thru its 5 bnc connectors for R G B H V.
Computer is easy, just get a DB15 vga break-out cable and hook it up and go.
HDTV via Y Pb Pr
is much tuffer as you will need an out-board scaler, and youll need one the supports HDTV at 1080i or 1080p. I use a lumagen 1080i for now.
The 1080p unit is very expensive.
Iv spent the better part of 1 year in my free time tweeking this thing. Its a major job and requires high amount of dedication. But the results are stunning. Its been way worht the efforts. Im flying in Leo Bassett from Electronic Cimema Service in Maryland this weekend to show off my work to the master. Im also purcahsing from him a set of high contrast ila plates that should push my contast ratio to over 1000:1.
I aborted on the "under ground projection room" project, after consulting with some friends, we found a much simpler mounting solution.
Web site with screen shotshttp://bbs.flagnet.orghttp://184.108.40.206
This a picture of the circut board card cage. There are 4 boards.
horiz deflective board
vert deflective board
system controller board (mother board)
raster timing generator board.box
This is a picture of me sitting on the large box the unit came in. I got my uint on ebay for $1000 as is. Its a D360 unit. Dont see many 360/370 units on ebay, but most people would rather want a 340 for home use anyways, the 360 is way to bright for home use. I got it because it was a good deal.burnt-chip ila light valve
This is a photo of a light valve assy. Also for fun, a picture of a corn chip that held in front of the main arc lamp output before its split into red green and blue. The corn chip was cooked in a matter of 1 second at 3000 watts at full power when exposed to the light beem.computer
This is just a picutre of my computer I used to control the thing. It has a VT100 RS232 port on it.crt-hdnet
This is a picutre of the internal CRT for the blue. It looks red because all the CRT's light controls the ila, no color (including green blue or red) comes from the crt, only a red/infrared represntation of what is to be shown in blue is visitable hear as red photons. did the make sence??crt-necks
This is picture of the backs of the crts with the card cage open.crt-on
This a nice pic of the three crts running. Again, they all look red to you and me.front mirrors
This is a pic of the front of the unit with the lid off. Notice the three mirrors that down-shoot very bright red green and blue light into the input port of the prisms. (the prisms are under the mirrors and really cant be seen in this photo)hdnet-color bar
This is a very early on screen shot of hdtv video. It way better then this now.hdnet-girl
Also a very elary on screen shot. Way better now.hdnet-overscan
Very cool pictures of the lid off with the unit running.mainboard
crappy pciture of the main system control board.on-floor
This is a great pic of the actuall unit with me stepping ontop of it to show releive size. Im 5`9 at 220 pounds.
This is not part of the projector, but its where I tapped off the 240volt 50 amp cicruit to power the unit.plug plug2
A photo of the acutally plug.smokepuff
Look right above the green center mirror and you will see a small puff of smoke, this is my frying the corn chip.
2nd link on the page...
These are all screen shots of acutal video.gtbunny gtbunny+carey
These are the latest pix, just a few days old. Sadly they are only 640x480, but still give a good idea of how good this thing is doing.
Please please please post your commnets/questions.