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-   -   Help between the PT-AR100 and PT-AE8000 (http://www.avsforum.com/forum/68-digital-projectors-under-3-000-usd-msrp/1517958-help-between-pt-ar100-pt-ae8000.html)

pd47 02-15-2014 09:57 AM

My Epson 8350 crapped out on me and I'm in the market for a replacement.  Had this happened before Black Friday I think it would have been an easy choice, but I just put a 60" Samsung in my living room and am a bit tired of spending money on TVs.  This brings me to where I'm at now.  I'm never giving Epson my money again, and based on all of my research I've narrowed down to the Panasonic's, the AR100 and the AE8000.  A few thoughts:

 

  • What worries me about the AR100 is those who say how "bright" it is.  I am in a basement and I can make it VERY dark (especially at night) as there's only 1 window adding light and it has a blind
  • What appeals to me about the AR100 is that with it's brightness I can watch sporting events and general TV without having to make things dark.  
  • The AE8000 has 3D (which I'm not into - but my wife and kids...).  I read plenty about the AE7000 and 3D not being the greatest, how is this on the 8000 and is it bright enough?
  • The AE8000 has some extra features, powered lens focus, more inputs, etc - none of which I think I will use.  

 

I'll be shooting it from about 13' to a 120" screen (don't ask me the gain or anything on the screen, I really have no idea on that one).  I need to be able to re-use the same spot as I already have my ceiling mount there, and moving that is just not something I want to fool with.  It appears that the price difference right now is about 700 (Panasonic running a $350 rebate for the next few weeks).  Normally I wouldn't blink at that, but like I said I'm getting a bit tired of spending on TVs right now.  That said I want something that's going to last (my Epson 8350 went out with only 1300 hours ever being put on it over 2.5 year period) and keep me happy for several years.  Can anyone add to or alleviate any of my concerns?  Anyone see these side by side or compare them to the 8350 (which - other than reliability of the unit and a complete lack of support from Epson, I was EXTREMELY happy with the picture quality)?

 

Thanks


DMark1 02-15-2014 04:01 PM

I'd go with the PTAE-8000. It will have plenty of lumens for your basement theater, and should have a much better picture than the PT-AR100.

Have you considered the JVC projectors at all? If you are not interested in 3D, the JVCs have (arguably) the best 2D picture out there, and the highest native contrast ratios without a dynamic iris....

I also highly recommend the SeymourAV line of acoustically transparent screens. Very high quality and affordable.

pd47 02-15-2014 07:24 PM

I looked at some of the JVC spec's, however they look like they're more suited for HT use only.  The X35 appears to be about what's in my price range for right now (though still a bit more than either the Panny's) but it's lumen level is quite low compared to the Epson 8350 I had, which I'd consider to have been bright enough to still watch sports and TV with the lights on.  I've read good things about their 3D performance (wrt crosstalk) even though the complaint is they're not quite as bright.  In my mind they represent the opposite problem of the AR100, which I'm afraid will be too bright.


Mr.G 02-17-2014 07:50 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by pd47 View Post

I looked at some of the JVC spec's, however they look like they're more suited for HT use only.  The X35 appears to be about what's in my price range for right now (though still a bit more than either the Panny's) but it's lumen level is quite low compared to the Epson 8350 I had, which I'd consider to have been bright enough to still watch sports and TV with the lights on.  I've read good things about their 3D performance (wrt crosstalk) even though the complaint is they're not quite as bright.  In my mind they represent the opposite problem of the AR100, which I'm afraid will be too bright.

If you were happy with the Epson 8350 you'll happy with the AR100U. If you search back through the 8350 thread you will find owners who switched to the AR100U and were pleased. Too much is being made of the fact that the AR100U is a bright projector because the lumens can be brought down easily by switching to eco mode and using the Rec-709 settings.

I set my niece and her husband up with the AR100U last year, they had a home theater, full kitchen, gaming area and guest bedroom put in their large open basement. They love the AR100U for the versatility of having some indirect lighting on during parties and the picture still looks very good even in eco mode. Even the wife and I like having some dim indirect lighting on when watching TV shows although I like to turn them off when watching a movie.

I can't speak for the Panasonic PT-AE8000 or JVC projectors, I'm sure they are great for their intended purpose. The AR100U has been one of Projector People's Top 10 selling projectors since being introduced over 2 years ago and to me that says a lot.


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