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post #1 of 32 Old 11-26-2012, 02:09 PM - Thread Starter
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We recently moved to new home that has media room. I am looking for help on what projector to buy, what screen size etc. I read reviews of different projectors on projector central. Looked at different threads here.

The media room is pre-wired for 5.1 audio, a place for mounting projector, power supply for it etc.
The room is 12ft 10inches wide, 17ft long and ceiling is 8ft from flooring. There are no windows and room can be completely dark during day time if I close the door.
It looks like the projector would be 15.5 ft away from the screen. Using the screen size calculator on projector central, It seems 150" screen can be used (or > 135" screen can fit as well).

We are planning to use this mainly for viewing movies.
I am looking for a projector below $3K that can do excellent 2D and pretty good 3D. The reason I want 3D is because it is available and latest (It is probably < 5% of 3D watching compared to Movies).

Based on the reviews, Epson 5020UB seems like a pretty good candidate. I am open to suggestions.
If I go with a screen around 145" to 150", does it have enough juice to light up the screen that size?

My budget for screen is around $500.
Are there any decent screens in that price range?

I already have Bose audio system that can do 5.1 audio (the one with those speaker cubes). I am planning to use it in this room.

I appreciate if you can point me to good dvd player that can do 3D, upscaling and BD playing.
I see some at local Costco. Are they good?

I am looking for suggestions, what not to do and what are things that new-bees overlook?


Thanks
Joe
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post #2 of 32 Old 11-26-2012, 02:51 PM
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Thanks for starting the thread.
I am also looking for a similar advice. I am also considering 5010e which is previous generation but going for $600 less.
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post #3 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 07:06 AM - Thread Starter
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I talked to local installer yesterday. He told me that 110" is the optimal screen size for that room. He measured that 12ft to 13ft is the distance from screen to sofa. I insisted for 135" size screen. His concern was that a person sitting and watching movie at that distance have too much screen space and they might have to move their eyes to see the whole screen.
I might go with 120" screen.

Has anyone installed Visualapex screens?
Visual apex have packages with their screens bundled with projector. Their screen is around $400-500 for the size I am looking for.

How good are those screens compared to other manufacturers like "screen innovations" etc?

Thanks
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post #4 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 07:33 AM
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The 5020 will have no problems lighting up a BIG screen. The problem is if you go big and you sit that close you might start to see SDE (screen door effect, basically the pixel spacing). You'll have no issues lighting up a 135" screen but I would try and make your seating 13+ feet back. I start seeing the SDE at around 12 feet on my 153" screen (Epson 8350 and 8500UB). If you can sit 13+ feet back, you could always move your seating forward till you hit the sweet spot of size vs picture quality. Bigger will give you more of that cinematic effect. IMO
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post #5 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 08:41 AM - Thread Starter
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I used the projector distance calculator at http://www.projectorcentral.com/Epson-PowerLite_Home_Cinema_5020UB-projection-calculator-pro.htm.
At 15.5ft of throw distance, it recommends sitting anywhere from 12 ft to 18ft. The optimal screen size seems to be 115".

Do projectors favor certain screen sizes?
If yes, how to find those sizes?

Thanks
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post #6 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 08:58 AM
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That calculator is not very good, IMHO. This one from coderguy is much better. http://www.eliteprojectorcalculator.com/

You'll have no issues going 150" or bigger. 135" will be absolutely no problem. Just make sure you have the ability to sit at the very least 13 feet back. Further would make seating placement much more flexible. I'm not saying you can't sit at 12 feet but you might start to see SDE. I don't know, size vs pixel structure may vary?? Just start at a further seating distance and move forward till you find the optimal seating distance for your preference.

I have no idea where 115" at 12-18 feet is optimal??? everyone is different. Sit where you want to sit as long as the distance vs picture quality balances out. I sit 15 feet back from my 153" screen and could sit as close as 13 feet. I find 15 feet works perfect for me. There is no way I would let anyone tell me my seating distance or screen size is not optimal. Don't let people tell you you can't go big. You can as long as you like a big picture. If you like the theater look and feel go big. You may have to change your bulb a little sooner than some others but it's a small price to pay for that cinematic quality, IMHO.

edit:

I should say my screen is 153" diagonal, 16x9 screen so that would be 133" length/width or 145" diagonal for a 2.35:1 screen. I would go 175" diagonal, 16x9 screen but unfortunately my room won't allow me.

also, crap is too classless a word, my apologies.
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post #7 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 10:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crabalocker View Post

That calculator is crap, IMHO. This one from coderguy is much better. http://www.eliteprojectorcalculator.com/
You'll have no issues going 150" or bigger. 135" will be absolutely no problem. Just make sure you have the ability to sit at the very least 13 feet back. Further would make seating placement much more flexible. I'm not saying you can't sit at 12 feet but you might start to see SDE. I don't know, size vs pixel structure may vary?? Just start at a further seating distance and move forward till you find the optimal seating distance for your preference.
I have no idea where 115" at 12-18 feet is optimal??? everyone is different. Sit where you want to sit as long as the distance vs picture quality balances out. I sit 15 feet back from my 153" screen and could sit as close as 13 feet. I find 15 feet works perfect for me. There is no way I would let anyone tell me my seating distance or screen size is not optimal. Don't let people tell you you can't go big. You can as long as you like a big picture. If you like the theater look and feel go big. You may have to change your bulb a little sooner than some others but it's a small price to pay for that cinematic quality, IMHO.
edit:
I should say my screen is 153" diagonal, 16x9 screen so that would be 133" length/width or 145" diagonal for a 2.35:1 screen. I would go 175" diagonal, 16x9 screen but unfortunately my room won't allow me.

Pardon my ignorance but isn't the screen size also dependent on the Projector Placement? I am saying this because, even though my room is 18ft long and I plan to sit at the edge of the wall (~17 feet), I would be ceiling mounting my projector at around 14 ft to give my self some room for XBox kinect (without coming in between the screen and PJ). So my Screen size would be determined by the throw distance.
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post #8 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 12:55 PM
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I'm a newbie as well. I have a bonus room above the garage that we are remodeling. We are doing built-ins on one wall and I wanted to do a hidden retractable screen in the molding of the shelves. This room is primarily a playroom for the kids and will be used for family movies, sports (for myself) and video games for myself and the kids. I have a 50 inch TV that will be in the built ins that will be used as the primary display. I have been looking at 2 setups and looking for some advice.

Budget

Optoma HD66 720P
Optoma XL 3D processor
Onkyo TX-NR515
100 inch Elite Screen
a few other things cables, mount ect.

This will cost about $1300 for everything

Optoma HD33 1080P 3D
Onkyo TX-NR616
FAVI HD-120 16:9/120-Inch Electric Projector Screen
a few other things cables, mount ect.

This will cost about $2100 for everything

Is either one of these setups worth it? Any other recommendations?

Thanks in advance
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post #9 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 02:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by techmine View Post

Pardon my ignorance but isn't the screen size also dependent on the Projector Placement? I am saying this because, even though my room is 18ft long and I plan to sit at the edge of the wall (~17 feet), I would be ceiling mounting my projector at around 14 ft to give my self some room for XBox kinect (without coming in between the screen and PJ). So my Screen size would be determined by the throw distance.

Yes you are absolutely correct. My Epson's are easier to place than my W7000. That goes for both zoom and lens shift. I have my Epson's mounted 15 feet back from my screen but have my W7000 18 feet back to fill the same screen. I place my projector as close to my screen as I can trying to get every bit of lumens from the projector. You sacrifice a bit of your contrast ratio but I feel going big, lumens to me are more important.

Ceiling mounting at 14 feet with an Epson will give a picture up to 140 or so inches.

coderguy's calculator (post 6) is really good for getting solid numbers.
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post #10 of 32 Old 11-27-2012, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpcothrenjr View Post

I'm a newbie as well. I have a bonus room above the garage that we are remodeling. We are doing built-ins on one wall and I wanted to do a hidden retractable screen in the molding of the shelves. This room is primarily a playroom for the kids and will be used for family movies, sports (for myself) and video games for myself and the kids. I have a 50 inch TV that will be in the built ins that will be used as the primary display. I have been looking at 2 setups and looking for some advice.
Budget
Optoma HD66 720P
Optoma XL 3D processor
Onkyo TX-NR515
100 inch Elite Screen
a few other things cables, mount ect.
This will cost about $1300 for everything
Optoma HD33 1080P 3D
Onkyo TX-NR616
FAVI HD-120 16:9/120-Inch Electric Projector Screen
a few other things cables, mount ect.
This will cost about $2100 for everything
Is either one of these setups worth it? Any other recommendations?
Thanks in advance

Not sure, I know nothing about Optima projectors. Just make sure of the projectors latency, if planning on playing video games. I know the Epson 8350, which has around a 20ms latency delay, is a good projector for all around duties and read in the 8350 thread that it's on sale (somewhere????) for $800. If it's true, that's a really good price.
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post #11 of 32 Old 11-28-2012, 08:51 AM
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Since we(newbies) on this subject and trying to squeeze every bit of advice from experts, I will throw my questions here:

After doing more extensive reading on the forums and reviews, I am leaning more towards 5020UBe (yes it breaks my budget but then thats what I always do
My target content is 2D,Sports,Games,HDTV,3D (in the order of importance).

I have few concerns though (after reading lots of information on this forum):
--> People are unhappy about higher input lag (~80 ms). Is this really a deal breaker for gamers? I have XBox 360+Kinect and I play a lot of car games.

--> Vertical lens shift. My ceiling is about 1-2 feet higher than the top most screen edge. People are unhappy about picture softness near the corners with vertical lens shift. Is this a big deal and easy to notice?

--> I don't have a 3D enabled A/V receiver yet. I am planning to use Wireless HDMI transmitter for 3D (direct from blue ray) and 2D (from A/V receiver). Note that A/V receiver will be doing switching between XBox, Mac Mini, Roku etc.
So I will be feeding 2 inputs to the wireless HDMI transmitter which in turn sends Video signals to 5020UBe. Can someone comment if this setup is workable. I know I have to figure out sound out from BD player. My BD Player does not have 2 HDMI outputs or 5.1 surround output.
Buying a new BD players is an option. How you guys are handling 3D with non-3D A/V receiver?

Thanks in advance for the inputs.
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post #12 of 32 Old 11-28-2012, 12:16 PM
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Droid:

Don't listen to that installer. smile.gif In the world of front projection (IMO) SIZE MATTERS. Get the biggest damned screen you can. biggrin.gif I'm running about 187-inch diagonal in a light-controlled room with an Epson 3010 at the moment and it's PLENTY bright. Even quite watchable with 3D (despite the loss in brightness because of shutter glasses.) As in a movie theater, I DON'T WANT to see the entire picture at once. Having a bit of the image in my peripheral vision adds to the immersiveness of the experience, at least for me. However, if you DON'T have effective light control in the room, you may want to go with a smaller screen size to optimize the brightness for your situation.

In a low ceiling (8-foot) situation, Epson is a good choice because they are designed to be located at the middle of the top/bottom edge of the screen image. Techmine, if necessary, you can add an extension to your ceiling mount that will lower the height of the projector to suit your situation. I think it's always a good idea to place your projector as close to am optimum position as possible, limited only by the size/layout of your room, and use lens shift (or keystone correction) as little as possible, or not at all (particularly for keystone which actually alters the digital picture quality).

Also, Techmine, you can find HDMI splitters to send two HDMI feeds from your BD player, one to feed the wireless HDMI (and support 3D) and one to feed your receiver. Depending on the value of your BD player, however, after pricing splitters, you might find it cost-effective just to buy a BD player with two HDMI outs already.
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post #13 of 32 Old 11-28-2012, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks guys for all the answers.

Where should I buy the screen and the projector?

For example, 5020 is not available @Amazon, but they have screens.

Is Visual Apex a great retailer?
They seem to have good bundle packages though.

Thanks
Joe
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post #14 of 32 Old 11-28-2012, 02:43 PM
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Ok about light controlled conditions? Pitch black or if not then walls and ceilings all black?
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post #15 of 32 Old 11-28-2012, 07:57 PM
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Dark walls and ceilings around the projector will help with absolute contrast....or does it????? is it more of a perceived contrast???? http://www.avsforum.com/t/1436767/the-truth-about-black-levels more stuff to think about.
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post #16 of 32 Old 11-29-2012, 02:35 PM
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Another Newbie need help, please advice.
I have a 20*14 room, no windows, 9 ft ceiling

Yamaha RX-A820
Sony BDP-S590 3D Blu-ray
Boston acoustic system 10K for 7.1, 10" down firing sub

Desires: Fantastic 2D, Watch games, may be a xbox later and some 3D. in that order

Looking at

JVC DLA-RS48 Projector
Panasonic PT-AE8000
Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 5020UB

No Idea on screen, 120" needed with 1.1 gain(?) and 500 budget

I am stuck on choosing a projector, hear good things on JVC for 2D, read a lot which says there is barely any difference in 3 projectors, some say nigh and day. I know decision is person but I cannot put them side by side.
I would really like a cinema experience(immersion) with high PQ

Any thoughts?
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post #17 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 04:34 AM
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Quote:
I talked to local installer yesterday. He told me that 110" is the optimal screen size for that room. He measured that 12ft to 13ft is the distance from screen to sofa. I insisted for 135" size screen. His concern was that a person sitting and watching movie at that distance have too much screen space and they might have to move their eyes to see the whole screen.
I might go with 120" screen.

Thanks

Move their eyes, like at a theater?

Was this a geeks quad guy?


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post #18 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 08:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dchandwani View Post

Another Newbie need help, please advice.
I have a 20*14 room, no windows, 9 ft ceiling
Yamaha RX-A820
Sony BDP-S590 3D Blu-ray
Boston acoustic system 10K for 7.1, 10" down firing sub
Desires: Fantastic 2D, Watch games, may be a xbox later and some 3D. in that order
Looking at
JVC DLA-RS48 Projector
Panasonic PT-AE8000
Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 5020UB
No Idea on screen, 120" needed with 1.1 gain(?) and 500 budget
I am stuck on choosing a projector, hear good things on JVC for 2D, read a lot which says there is barely any difference in 3 projectors, some say nigh and day. I know decision is person but I cannot put them side by side.
I would really like a cinema experience(immersion) with high PQ
Any thoughts?
If you see my post above, I have decided to go with Sony HW50ES projector. It seems to be an all round projector with improvements from last years model. Folks at AVS store have good prices for that projector and people here have good things to say about it. The only thing to look forward to at this point is JVC X35. But those units will take time to trickle in, get benchmarked, previewed, reviewed before comforting potential buyers like us.
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post #19 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 08:32 AM
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dchandwani,

If gaming is in your priority list, the Sony HW50, like techmine just decided on, should also be on your short list. I believe it has a 30ms latency delay which is really good for a projector. Really good blacks with lots of lumens. I would check it out.
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post #20 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 09:46 AM
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RE: Light controlled environment

The most important issue is just being able to keep the outside light...out. My room is currently light controlled, but far from a Batcave (though someday I will be turning it into one.) And the walls are light beige. Nonetheless, the Epson 3010 casts a very bright picture, even at a large size.

The bigger issue with the new gen of VERY bright projectors is wall reflection. I have a black border around my screen, but the beige walls to the side and the off-white ceiling reflect light back onto the screen and compromise the picture quality. The reflected light doesn't ruin the picture--it still looks great--but it does keep the image from being the best possible that the projector can throw. If you don't/can't repaint your theater to a darker color, then a darker color on the flanking walls and ceiling is still desirable to limit that light bounceback.

Also, great choice, Techmine. I envy you that Sony projector!
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post #21 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 09:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crabalocker View Post

Not sure, I know nothing about Optima projectors. Just make sure of the projectors latency, if planning on playing video games. I know the Epson 8350, which has around a 20ms latency delay, is a good projector for all around duties and read in the 8350 thread that it's on sale (somewhere????) for $800. If it's true, that's a really good price.

Crabalocker, where did you see the 8350 on sale for $800. i cannot find it in the 8350 thread. I am just about to place my order on the Canadian Epson website for a refurbished 8350 then i read that line of yours. Please let me know so I can check it out if need be. I want to order the unit before the end of today.

As for getting a refurbished unit, does anyone see a problem with this since it comes with the regular 2-year limited warranty as with a brand new unit?
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post #22 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boblinds View Post

RE: Light controlled environment
The most important issue is just being able to keep the outside light...out. My room is currently light controlled, but far from a Batcave (though someday I will be turning it into one.) And the walls are light beige. Nonetheless, the Epson 3010 casts a very bright picture, even at a large size.
The bigger issue with the new gen of VERY bright projectors is wall reflection. I have a black border around my screen, but the beige walls to the side and the off-white ceiling reflect light back onto the screen and compromise the picture quality. The reflected light doesn't ruin the picture--it still looks great--but it does keep the image from being the best possible that the projector can throw. If you don't/can't repaint your theater to a darker color, then a darker color on the flanking walls and ceiling is still desirable to limit that light bounceback.
Also, great choice, Techmine. I envy you that Sony projector!

Yeah I get your point. Only if redoing a room was easy enough :-) To sum up my situation, I am posting these two pictures. My Wall color is dull enough but big window and ultra white ceiling is giving me heart burns :-)




Here is what I am planning to do:

Paint the ceiling with same color is walls.
Cover the windows with (zero light) curtains. May be couple of layers.
Also, note the lens shift I have to use. I will be able to lower the projector a bit with the arm but still will be way off the center of the screen.

New Home, tough choices wink.gif
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post #23 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 04:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTV Maniac View Post

Crabalocker, where did you see the 8350 on sale for $800. i cannot find it in the 8350 thread. I am just about to place my order on the Canadian Epson website for a refurbished 8350 then i read that line of yours. Please let me know so I can check it out if need be. I want to order the unit before the end of today.
As for getting a refurbished unit, does anyone see a problem with this since it comes with the regular 2-year limited warranty as with a brand new unit?


Sorry, I can't remember where I read it???? I know I came across it some where. Maybe in the black Friday deals thread???

Sorry, I'm at work and don't have time to search.
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post #24 of 32 Old 11-30-2012, 06:18 PM
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What about purchasing a refurb unit from Epson? Any advice on that?
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post #25 of 32 Old 12-02-2012, 11:18 AM
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You know you could always learn for yourself what's important to you. You don't have to rely of the 'experts' you find on this forum. For example, you wonder which size screen is best. The obvious solution is to not buy a screen at all. Try out a blank wall. If you like 110" then you can buy that size screen. If on the other hand you find that you prefer a bigger image from your sofa, you can order a bigger screen. The advantage of this procedure is that you will trust yourself and your own observations. But if you rely on the opinions of others - doubts will arise sooner or later.

I also recommend buying an inexpensive 'starter' projector first. I'd get a 720 DLP projector. Maybe you see rainbows. Maybe your room requires lens shift. If you find out that DLP doesn't work for you or your room just sell it. If not upgrade or keep it. Be your own expert.
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post #26 of 32 Old 12-04-2012, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by PLB View Post

You know you could always learn for yourself what's important to you. You don't have to rely of the 'experts' you find on this forum. For example, you wonder which size screen is best. The obvious solution is to not buy a screen at all. Try out a blank wall. If you like 110" then you can buy that size screen. If on the other hand you find that you prefer a bigger image from your sofa, you can order a bigger screen. The advantage of this procedure is that you will trust yourself and your own observations. But if you rely on the opinions of others - doubts will arise sooner or later.
I also recommend buying an inexpensive 'starter' projector first. I'd get a 720 DLP projector. Maybe you see rainbows. Maybe your room requires lens shift. If you find out that DLP doesn't work for you or your room just sell it. If not upgrade or keep it. Be your own expert.

I agree with you completely on the screen size solution and now I am going to do the same. Some experts are experts but newbies mainly rely on individual experiences. I won't be an expert after my first projector project but I will be able to share my experience with others. May be a best practice if I burn my hands with something biggrin.gif
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post #27 of 32 Old 12-04-2012, 10:27 AM - Thread Starter
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My home is in neighborhood where the builder has a model home with media room and a projector. We went there couple of days back with a tape. The media room has almost same size as mine. It was probably 8-10" wider than ours. They have 120" screen installed. We watched a scene from Transformers DVD. It looked fine watching at 12ft away from the screen.

It feels 130" screen should be fine as well in that room.
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post #28 of 32 Old 12-13-2012, 09:29 AM - Thread Starter
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I talked to Visual apex (www.visualapex.com) and projector people (http://www.projectorpeople.com/). I ended up going with projector people.

This is what I got from projector people.

1) 5020UB projector
2) Universal mount
3) 2 extra pairs of epson 3d rf glasses (the projector comes with two besides these)
4) 119" Accuscreen high contrast gray fixed

I didn't have to pay any sales tax. Including shipping, I paid $3122.

Todd Reed at projector people was quite helpful.

FYI
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post #29 of 32 Old 12-13-2012, 11:26 AM
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Techmine:

Sorry I didn't respond sooner, I've been away. I don't think you need to get heartburn. It's a very nice HT room. The high ceiling is great. I'd just get some blackout curtains and give it a go without repainting the ceiling. Or temporarily cover the window with newspaper for testing purposes. It will also block the light and have the added benefit of making the neighbors think you're setting up a crack house. smile.gif

Also, if you're concerned about having a long dropdown attachment to a ceiling mount, perhaps you could just mount the projector to the opposite wall with a kind of shelf mount. I'm sure someone here has experience with that kind of installation and could offer some suggestions.

A lot of us have converted our home theater enthusiasm into a hobby/obsession, so we might tend to make these things seem more complicated than they are (in our quest for anal-retentive perfection.) In fact, setting up a projector these days isn't much more complicated than setting up an old slide projector. Just experiment a bit with placement before you lock in your final installation.
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post #30 of 32 Old 12-26-2012, 04:11 PM
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Ok got my 5020UB installed finally. Had to return first because that looked to be "Previously (ab)USED" :-) If you see my room photos, I am giving my general impressions based on those light conditions.
My setup is:
Samsung BlueRay player directly connected to the PJ with a good quality, brand new HDMI cable. Sound goes to Onkyo via Coaxial cable from BD Player.That Onkyo SR706 plus $180 Polk 5.1 set (5 yrs old) made my professional installer's head spin. He could not blv that the sound is coming from those tiny speakers cool.gif

Back to PJ:
1. Brightness or PJ Color Presets experience
Movies: The projector's default setting is the THX mode. Day time with some light windows? THX is too dull. Simply put, not bright enough.
Change the mode to either Dynamic or Living Room, projector is perfect but there is a problem. See #2
During nights, the room is pitch dark and the THX mode looks great.

TV: via TIVO+HD Antenna. CBS, NBC look stunning in THX mode no matter what light conditions are. confused.gif

XBox Games: Same as Movies.

Roku: For Netflix but Netflix is better on XBox Netflix App.

So you see Brightness is a mixed bag. I am surely going to put blackout curtains to reduce light and improve my movie experience.

2. Noise
I tested this in pin drop silence. The projector in Dynamic and Living Room modes go to Normal bulb mode and that means the noise coming out of PJ increase by about 10db (from 32 to 42db). There is a 5ft distance between my ears and the PJ. Its almost unacceptable. Its loud. Having said that, PJ in other modes is virtually silent. Great!

3. Convergence
Coming to the talk of the town. Honestly, mine is not bad but I could only test to a certain extent. When my eyes refused to check pixel level details, I went back to watching movies and it was all good. There does not seem to be any tint on any side of the screen.

4. FI (frame interpolation)
Fantastic effect on all the FI settings(beyond off). Movies do show more reality. But again, I don't know how much do I need that. Movies in theaters don't have it or do they? I will try it in soccer games or cricket to feel the effect. I am not happy with the fact that 3D does not have FI which I could have got with Sony HS50 which was around $600 more biggrin.gif

5. Color
In all modes, the color is superb.

Thats for my general impressions. I have some pictures which I will load in a bit.
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