I had decided on a Panasonic AE3000. I still was satisfied with the picture from my InFocus X1 but I could no longer stand the grinding, buzzing sound from the color wheel.
The Panasonic seems to be the popular standard. Every reviewer compares against the AE3000 - and the AE3000 usually wins. Also the Panasonic has "features" - little electronic gizmos that are of interest to hobbyists like me.
One reason I wanted an LCD machine was for rear shelf mounting. I had bought a Da-Lite Hi-Power screen (2.8 gain) to compensate for my X1's dimness. The Hi-Power is retro-reflective so it needs to have the projector near the line of sight of the viewer. I had tilted the X1 and tilted the screen so as to create a rectilinear image without using electronic keystone correction. This worked fine.
But I didn't get the Panasonic, I got the Mitsubishi. The main reason was that at around two and a half thousand dollars, I had to think about buying the Panasonic, but at less than seven hundred dollars the Mitsubishi was an impulse purchase.
The secondary reason was that the Roku/NetFlix HD service that I have begun to watch so much lately is 720p. A native 720 projector like the Mitsubishi should be at least equal to 1080 projector like the Panasonic which has to scale the image. I don't know if this is really true but its hard to pay three and a half times as much money for a projector that only has a chance of casting a better image.
I bought from Amazon. I'm a member here, but I forgot. I was ordering some novels from Amazon and their site software somehow knew me well enough that they suggested the Mitsubishi. What the hell! The X1's grinding was driving me nuts. I ordered the HC1600 on a whim.
That was three days ago. The projector got here after two days. The four novels haven't come yet.
Bad news: my shelf is about 12" wide, the HC1600 is about 12" wide. But there is about an eighth of an inch difference. Just enough to require some carpentry (BTW - the Panasonic is much wider and would never have fit). So I mounted the HC1600 on an end table behind my matching recliners. The light is projected at sitting eye level between the two chairs of my modest HT.
Good News: the damn thing is so bright that I can't watch it in Standard mode. I watched Swimming Pool, an artsy slow moving movie with lots of sunny outdoor scenes. I fell asleep while watching (if you know this movie you won't be surprised). Then the scene changed to an outdoor shot in brilliant sunlight and all that light woke me up. It really did look like the outdoors in southern France. I considered wearing sun glasses.
I next watched an episode of Heroes - also HD. The picture had a richness and a clarity that took be by surprise. I had been happy with my X1 - probably because of my high gain screen, but the Mitsu image was was in another league altogether. The Panasonic uses some kind of filter to eliminate screendoor. The Mitsu HC1600 doesn't have any screendoor to eliminate. Most of the time the X1 didn't have visible screendoor but when the titles rolled you could always see the pixel structure. I have a 110" screen (8 feet wide) and I sit 12 feet away - I can see no pixels with the Mitsu.
In Heroes shown in 720p HD, I can see every pimple, every nose hair and every eyelash of the actors in closeup. This much detail tends to distract from the plot. I can't imagine why I would want more. Heroes is after all a TV show optimized for viewing on 24" CRTs in living rooms.
I have some HDMI cables on order. So far I've used component cables. I don't see how the picture can get better, but I've been wrong before.