Originally Posted by Wolfgheist
I agree that it would have been nice if everyone that reviewed them, did it in the same room, same setup, used electronic equipment to monitor all outputs etc instead of their own eyes and opinions. I think I would have probably been happy with either one, but I am glad I don't have to worry about rabid dust bunnies, or convergence issues.
OK, just for fun, I think I'll weigh in.
Yes, my review Sony has a background blue problem, in the upper right and lower left corners, thus, another unit coming in.
I tend to agree, the VW40 and Epson UB are both rather impressive projectors. I think, subjectively, I can discount that to a large degree in posting my opinions, of course I could be surprised, it is possible that the next VW40 to arrive, will outperform handily both the older VW50 and the more expensive VW60, but I don't find that very likely. The VW60 sets a high mark, that the VW40 should not be able to match. If it did, the VW60 would be irrelevant, and not worth a penny more.
I believe that different room conditions may well yield different picks as to which reviewers and buyers would prefer. (light walls vs. dark, screen size, type, etc.)
However, all that considered, the reason I personally favor the Epson UB, over the VW40, is based on this:
1. I viewed both projectors side by side, in "best" mode. (lumen output is virtually identical. Note, I do only brightness contrast and grayscale adjustments. I do this in my testing room with fairly dark walls, projecting two 50" diagonal images (roughly) on my 106" Carada Brilliant White screen.
2. In my theater (still with lighter colored walls), my JVC RS1 sits shelf mounted fairly high. I compare the RS1 to the Epson, by watching 5-20 minute segments of the usual movies. I have about a 5 minute break between viewing one, and the other. I will usually finish by freezing the player (PS3). On a scene, and study it, then switch projectors. I look at that screen again closely, then go back to the beginning of the "clip" I want to watch, and view it all the way through.
I did the same thing comparing the VW40 to the RS1.
Here's the rub: After going back between the RS1, and the VW40, I am consistent in feeling that the VW40, in many ways, is similar to the RS1, but a step down product. It just doesn't look as good. It' can't match the black levels (of course), etc., but overall, it's sort of going from the Lexus version to the Camry version. Very similar, but one is better than the other. (better leather, better toys, more horsepower...)
When I do the same between the Epson and the RS1, I get a completely different feeling. Sure, the RS1 still wins on blacks and in other areas, BUT - I feel the Epson is more different, rather than inferior. I'm not saying I would trade my RS1 for the Epson (I wouldn't), but if I had to give up my RS1, and pick a projector to use for the next 6 months, one under $3K, it would definitely be the Epson.
The strangest thing about reviewing the Epson, is that in most cases when reviewing a projector I put between 25 and 40 hours on the projector, the bulk of it watching content, rather than testing or close up analysis. If the projector lingers around here (manufacturer not in a hurry to get it back), I log some additional hours on them, but mostly they sit in my testing room waiting, in case another competing projector arrives so I can do a side by side comparison.
In the case of the Epson, though, I found myself watching it at least as much as my RS1. In fact, it's still here (now about 7 weeks), and I've logged well over 200 hours on it.
More to the point, Over the last two weeks or so, I have had the UB, the W5000 (benq) and the VW40 all sitting in my theater room (still light walls, though). On many evenings I have watched more than 30 minutes of each projector. Pausing to switch back and forth, watching much of the same content over, and over again. (I normally wouldn't do that for an extended period, but these are all very competitive projectors, each with their own advantages.)
It still comes back to the same thing. For me, if it's not the RS1, then my second choice of the 4 projectors is the Epson UB. When I watch the VW40, I simply am not as satisfied, as when watching the Epson, (or the RS1).
The BenQ, btw is more difficult. It has a sheer horsepower adavantage, with about 200 more lumens in best mode, sometimes it really looks great, other times, I find it more flawed than the other two. To me, the challenge, is which I prefer, the BenQ or the VW40, but will (despite the lower lumens compared to the BenQ), take the Epson just about every time, over either.
Hey, people, "It's my job" to do all this - comparing, etc. Fortunately, I've got a personal "mode" where I can shut all that off, and forget about projectors, and just watch movies TV and sports. It took years to hone that skill - mostly from my esoteric audio days, when for a while I gave up on listening to some of my favorite music, because the record's production qualities were much poorer than other records.
My best advice, I think, is still to tell everyone, to pick a projector, kick back and enjoy the content, and stop fussing about the finer points of the projectors' flaws and strengths.
I know it's a hobby for many of you, as it is for me, but wouldn't it just be nice to put on a movie and enjoy it? without listening specifically for iris noise, fan noise, motion blur, rainbow effect, 3:2 pulldown, background unevenness, black levels and shadow detail?
What good are the really stunning, redone "dark side of the moon" scenes from Close Encounters on blu-ray, if all you notice is how much loss of shadow detail there is, in the lower right side of Devils Monument?
So, even you hobbyists - figure out how to focus on the content - works for me. -art