Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: central Minnesota
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
UMDRunner;I have been researching all over the place for an extreme budget projector. I have decided that viewsonics are my best bet for the money I am able to spend. [snip].
Right now I am leaning towards the Viewsonic PJ458D because it is marketed as an office type projector meant for presentations. The main purpose will be to use in my and my upcoming friends weddings for a slideshow. I would like to eventually use it in my basement for a nice movie set up. If one of the other projectors is far superior, or if the Viewsonic PJ458D will be just awful with video, please let me know.
I bought a PJ458D on Ebay last summer for about $175 with a new bulb. We've used it for outdoor movie night, playing Wii on the wall, and my kids are watching a movie in the basement with it right now. I think it's actually a quite good business projector (better than the really spendy ones installed in the classrooms at my college at least): bright, sharp, light, and very portable. I have no complaints and would not hesitate to use it for a slide show as you describe.
For actual home theater use it has several shortcomings. Resolution is an obvious one; it's just not going to look like the amazing HD projectors that run $1K and up. More practically, is has only RGB (VGA), composite, and s-video inputs. I have ours connected to an old DVD player via s-video, and use the same input connected to a PC as well. Picture quality is OK, but it makes me want to watch blue rays on our 52" tv instead.
Given your needs I wouldn't hesitate on the PJ358D or something comparable. If you decide later you want a real theater projector (I do now) you can probably sell it and recoup part of your investment anyway. It's modern enough to serve quite well as a business projector, and people always need those.