Replacement for HD81 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 05-05-2014, 12:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Hey all-

So recently I bought a house, and it came with a very nice home theatre system. Included in this was an Optoma HD81 projector and a 91" screen.

Long story short, before I had gotten even a few hours of out of the system, the HD81 appears to have died. I thought it was a bulb issue, but replacement bulbs faired no better than the original bulb. I had a brief chat with Optoma this morning, and they recommended replacing the projector altogether.

My budget is flexible, but I'm looking around the $1k mark. I've identified what are probably the most logical choices - BenQ 1070, Epson 8345, Optoma HD25e and HD131Xe. I suspect any of these will work for my needs, which are primarily movies and some video games.

However, my worry is the room setup. Given that this was all done prior to my purchasing the house, I'd really rather not undo all the really nice work that they put into the theatre room. Looking at the projector calculator for the HD81 (http://www.projectorcentral.com/Optoma-HD81-projection-calculator-pro.htm) it looks like to hit a 91" screen, they've probably got the projector at ~13ft back. The only projector out of the list above that appears to be able give me a similar throw is the 8345 - is this correct? All the rest seem to indicate that they'll give me about 20" more than I want on my diagonal if they're put the same distance away. I'm planning on making the actual measurements tonight when I get home, but I'm fairly confident on the screen size, and 13" back is a completely reasonable estimate for where the projector is.

Does this basically make my decision for me? Any other projectors I might want to look at before picking up the 8345? I guess I could remove the screen entirely, and project onto the wall instead...

Optoma did say that their first guess on my projector issue is the mainboard, which they said they could sell me for $350. Might I be better just going that route?

Sorry for all the questions, I just wasn't expecting to have to replace this projector so soon.
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post #2 of 7 Old 05-05-2014, 02:46 PM
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I would take a look at the Optoma HD8200 refurb at Newegg for $699. It will out preform anything you listed for 2D (no 3D) and should be able to be a replacement for the HD81

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post #3 of 7 Old 05-05-2014, 03:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rekbones View Post

I would take a look at the Optoma HD8200 refurb at Newegg for $699.
Do you have a link ? I've searched Newegg site, but didn't found the Optoma ...
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post #4 of 7 Old 05-05-2014, 10:06 PM
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post #5 of 7 Old 05-06-2014, 03:23 AM
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its better an "old" optoma hd8200 than a "fresh" benq w1400/1300 ??
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post #6 of 7 Old 05-06-2014, 12:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback.

Why would you recommend the HD8200? Looking at the stats on it, it seems like it's slightly worse than the projectors I identified. I'm just not sure how lower specs translates into outperforming...

At this point I think I'm leaning heavily towards the 8345 - seems like a decent price, and the 8350, which is apparently basically the same machine, gets great reviews.

If I go that route, any thoughts on where I should purchase it from? I usually buy from Amazon, but was wondering if Best Buy might be better choice for this? I've heard their extended warranty basically pays for itself on projectors, since they cover a new bulb, and I've seen a number of reports of the 8350 running a bit hot and burning bulbs out a bit quicker than expected. I've also heard B&H has a pretty good warranty - anyone know anything about that?

Thanks.
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-06-2014, 12:49 PM
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I would tend to agree the older high end DLPs are better made with better optics than the new junk. The DLP technology has not changed much if at all other than cheaper build with low quality optics to cut the cost of manufacturing. The new stuff is very bright which will cause the black levels to suffer and with your small screen the 8200 would be more than bright enough. I did not check the calculator to see if it would fit in your location but is also has both Vertical and horizontal shift. I own a Planar PD8150 2008-2010 currently still made but is now the Runco LS5 and it is an awesome projector.. As far as Refurbs, I have never owned one, I typically buy used...
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