Split Screen Capable Projectors (Side-By-Side/POP) for Gaming - Thoughts? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 15 Old 10-31-2013, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Continuing to explore my first HT build, I've become curious about pjs that support split-screen from two sources (not PiP, but two smaller, side-by-side images).  It looks like at least a few do, like the Pro8200 and the Epson 5020/5030/4030.  But I haven't found much good information about this feature.  Most reviews mention it in passing, and the product pages point it out, but I haven't found any good images or details.

 

The main reason for this would be gaming.  My wife and I are both avid gamers, and love to play co-op games together.  We've each got our own Xbox 360 and our own gaming PCs.  Currently one of us plays on our 50" TV while the other is on a 23" computer monitor.  It would pretty awesome to both have 50" screens (assuming a 100" normal screen), or even bigger with some creative screen design and home masking.  

 

I have no idea if projecting the two sources kills latency, which would be one of the biggest deciding factors.

 

Taking a hit to pq would be okay, as the main reason we play co-op is for fun, not to be blown away by visuals (we have sp games for that).  

 

I'd be willing to bump up my budget if this worked.  I'm assuming it would likely need a model with saved multiple pq settings to bounce back and forth between a single large screen and two smaller screens. 

 

Anyone tried this, or have links to some better information than I have been able to find?

 

Thanks!

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post #2 of 15 Old 10-31-2013, 12:14 PM
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This would be something nice to know. I currently have a w1070 but in the future if and when I upgrade this would be a good requirement to where I can play a game and the kids can still watch tv and the image will still be bigger than my 55" plasma.
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post #3 of 15 Old 10-31-2013, 01:26 PM - Thread Starter
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I dug through some user manuals to see what I could learn.  Interestingly, the Epson 5020 specifically outlines split screen mode in its manual, while the new xx30 models all only mention PiP with no mention of split screen.  The 5020 remote had a "Split" button, while the xx30 remotes have a "PiP" button.  But all of the new Epsons are advertised as supporting split screen on Epson's site.  Something does not add up.

 

I sent Epson an email asking for a clarification.  We'll see if I get a response.  I also dropped a line to my local high-end electronics retailer to see what they currently have set up in their projection room to see if maybe they've got one with split screen that I can go in and check out.

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post #4 of 15 Old 11-04-2013, 06:45 AM - Thread Starter
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I did end up  hearing back from Epson, who confirmed that the side-by-side feature in the xx10s and xx20s has been replaced with PiP in the xx30s.  No comment on if a firmware update could bring it back.

 

My local dealer does have a 6010 set up, and I'm going to check it back out this week and see how much of a hit to the quality the picture takes when viewed in side-by-side.

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post #5 of 15 Old 11-09-2013, 09:57 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm still researching this.  There's some high end professional video equipment with DVI inputs/outputs that sells for a reasonable price used online, so I grabbed one.  No HDCP support, so that's going to limit it's usefulness, but I think it may work for what I want (360 doesn't use HDCP on game output and my PCs don't either), depending on how much latency it adds.  It's an RGB Spectrum model.  I'll update with how well it works. 

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post #6 of 15 Old 11-09-2013, 06:15 PM
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Thanks for posting. I'll be interested to hear what you find out!
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post #7 of 15 Old 11-17-2013, 12:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Okay, so I got in the video processor.  It's an RGB Spectrum Quadview 2+2.  It can display four sources at once, though just 2 can be digital, and the other two have to be analog (which is fine, as I only need 2 digital).  It only has DVI inputs/outputs for digital, so I had to get a couple of DVI to HDMI adapters to use with my 360s.  So far it seems to work great.  I've tried it with two PCs and with two 360s, no problems.  You can independently control screen size and position screens wherever you want.   It doesn't introduce any input latency that I can tell.  You control it through web browser by going to its IP address on your network.  The controls aren't exactly consumer friendly (lots of confusing options, but most of them can be ignored). But anyone who is into AV stuff shouldn't have too much trouble figuring it out.  I did have to reconfigure my router to get access to it, as it has a fixed IP address that wasn't initially supported with how my router was set up.

 

There's also a Dualview 2 model that just doesn't have the analog inputs and can only display two sources. Looks like it goes cheaper on eBay than the Quadview, but there weren't any available when I bought this one.  A bunch of guys have them priced at $400-$500, but past sales indicate that if you're patient you can pick one up for $65-$150. 

 

The biggest downside to this thing is noise.  It's built to go into a server rack, and has relatively loud fans.  It's louder than my original 360 with its jet engine of a DVD drive, and that was the loudest device I've ever owned. 

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post #8 of 15 Old 12-09-2013, 10:59 AM
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Thanks for this thread. I missed it completely, and have been trying to find these answers without much luck. I'm pretty annoyed at Epson. They reduce lag in the 5030UB, but remove the split-screen! I've got two racing wheel cockpit setups and some games don't support two player split screen mode (top and bottom). Unfortunately these are the games in which multi-player mode would be best, so I'm building another PC and wanted a pj that did side-by-side split screen. Looks like I will have to get an Epson 5020, as I need the lens shift too. The video processor looks promising as well.
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post #9 of 15 Old 12-09-2013, 11:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fitbrit View Post

Thanks for this thread. I missed it completely, and have been trying to find these answers without much luck. I'm pretty annoyed at Epson. They reduce lag in the 5030UB, but remove the split-screen! I've got two racing wheel cockpit setups and some games don't support two player split screen mode (top and bottom). Unfortunately these are the games in which multi-player mode would be best, so I'm building another PC and wanted a pj that did side-by-side split screen. Looks like I will have to get an Epson 5020, as I need the lens shift too. The video processor looks promising as well.

 

Before biting on the 5020, I'd really suggest trying to track down one of those multi-view video processors.  I'm thrilled with this thing the longer I have it.  The 5020 can only do one digital and one analog input, which is what kept me from going with it. 

 

I'm going to do a write up for a gaming site about building the ultimate couch co-op setup that will have a bunch more details about how I set up my theater, and recommendations to duplicate it for a variety of budgets.  I'm just waiting for my retractable screen to show up so I can photograph the room.  Right now I just have some raw material suspended from the ceiling. 

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post #10 of 15 Old 12-09-2013, 11:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjorndadwarf View Post

Before biting on the 5020, I'd really suggest trying to track down one of those multi-view video processors.  I'm thrilled with this thing the longer I have it.  The 5020 can only do one digital and one analog input, which is what kept me from going with it. 

I'm going to do a write up for a gaming site about building the ultimate couch co-op setup that will have a bunch more details about how I set up my theater, and recommendations to duplicate it for a variety of budgets.  I'm just waiting for my retractable screen to show up so I can photograph the room.  Right now I just have some raw material suspended from the ceiling. 

Thanks for the advice. I am looking for a 3D replacement for my Epson 8350 anyway, so the 5020UB fits the bill, but not the wallet! The digital input limitation is easily worked around; I have bought a $15 HDMI to VGA converter, and this can sit at the end of my second HDMI cable.

The 5020UB should be the easy, expensive solution that gives me 3D.
The RGBSpectrum DualView, however, is the inexpensive solution, that will require additional fiddling so that I can still use the pj for single input movies in fullscreen mode, relatively hassle-free. I guess it has a 1:1 passthrough mode too? I just have to find a source for this item that can deliver to Canada.
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post #11 of 15 Old 12-09-2013, 11:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fitbrit View Post


Thanks for the advice. I am looking for a 3D replacement for my Epson 8350 anyway, so the 5020UB fits the bill, but not the wallet! The digital input limitation is easily worked around; I have bought a $15 HDMI to VGA converter, and this can sit at the end of my second HDMI cable.

The 5020UB should be the easy, expensive solution that gives me 3D.
The RGBSpectrum DualView, however, is the inexpensive solution, that will require additional fiddling so that I can still use the pj for single input movies in fullscreen mode, relatively hassle-free. I guess it has a 1:1 passthrough mode too? I just have to find a source for this item that can deliver to Canada.

 

The way I set up the Quadview is that it's only on and being used when we're gaming together.  I've got all my components except one 360 run through an A/V receiver.  The receiver has two HDMI outputs.  One output goes straight to the projector, one output goes to the Quadview.  The second 360 goes straight to the Quadview, and the Quadview goes to the second HDMI input on the pj.  My receiver also supports multi-zone audio from multiple sources simultaneously.  The second 360 sends audio over optical to the receiver.  So all I have to do is turn on the Quadview, hit a couple of buttons on remotes, and we're running in split screen and each of us has sound.  When we're watching movies or playing single player games, the Quadview is turned off. 

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post #12 of 15 Old 12-09-2013, 12:08 PM
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Thank you very much. That is what I was thinking I would do too. I'm using an Onkyo NR5010, which has dual HDMI outputs too. The only thing I might change is that I'd hook up the audio from both PCs to 7.1 headphones for gaming. I'd leave just one of the PCs' sound going to the 11.1 system for spectators, while the two drivers had their own noise-cancelled sound. It would be nice if the receiver could mix both audio inputs, though, like the single-PC split screen games currently do.

Because of this thread, I've made more progress and got more answers than in the past month!
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post #13 of 15 Old 12-11-2013, 01:48 PM
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I'm having a hard time finding a DualView to buy for a reasonable price, or any other HDMI/DVI split sceen processor for that matter. Put it this way - it's almost cheaper to buy a second 8350 for gaming. But then I'd need a 3rd fullscreen projector too! smile.gif

I'm almost considering keeping the 8350, and getting a Panasonic 3 D projector as well. If I can use the Panasonic's 'zoom' memory to create a second, split-screen setting, I would use the Panny for fullscreen viewing and halfscreen gaming, with the 8350 always set as the second half of the gaming setup. I'm not sure that the Panasonic can do this - remember a secondary zoom level and lens shift; I'll have to research that one more.
I'm still not convinced that the input lag on the 5020UB is low enough that I can game with it.
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post #14 of 15 Old 12-11-2013, 01:58 PM - Thread Starter
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It took me about 3 weeks to find one at a reasonable price. A few a month seem to get posted, and there doesn't seem to be a huge demand for them. It's just a matter of the timeframe you want to work with. A second projector could certainly get the job done as well if that's in your budget. For me, having a second projector just isn't a possibility. I needed the dedicated device that I could put out of the way.

I wouldn't hesitate to contact one of the eBay sellers with an expensive one and ask to negotiate. Just link to the completed sales for a Quadview 2+2 and point out that the highest priced one has sold at for the last 2 months was $145 shipped. The guy selling them for $700 is way, way over what the market price for them is.

One of my concerns with the built in split capabilities of the Epsons was that I didn't know if they would introduce yet more input latency when in split mode. It was really frustrating to not be able to find anyone with any experience using the split capabilities of the Epsons.
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post #15 of 15 Old 12-11-2013, 02:18 PM
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Great advice, again. I might do that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjorndadwarf View Post

One of my concerns with the built in split capabilities of the Epsons was that I didn't know if they would introduce yet more input latency when in split mode. It was really frustrating to not be able to find anyone with any experience using the split capabilities of the Epsons.

Yes, that's kinda scary too.

I could live with 2 projectors, but three is too many. My 8350 is a beast for gaming, so a processor would be a great idea. Thanks for your suggestions.
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