Need help buying my first projector - AVS Forum
Digital Projectors - Under $3,000 USD MSRP > Need help buying my first projector
Rairun's Avatar Rairun 03:11 AM 09-02-2014
Hi all,
I want to buy a projector for my small room. I'll mainly watch 720p or 1080p mkv movies. I'll be viewing a 90" screen from 3 meters.

Now, this is gonna be my first projector. I wonder if I'd see much difference between a 1080p and 720p projector regarding the screen size and viewing distance mentioned. Because I've found a used Optoma HD67N for 300 USD, it's used for 600 hours. I wonder if this is a really good deal. If yes, maybe it is better to stick with this one for a while. What do you think?


Ftoast's Avatar Ftoast 08:41 AM 09-02-2014
Used is a gamble. It may have other problems they won't tell you or it might die in a month with no warranty to help. The general advice is, if you're low on cash, you don't want to gamble.

The difference in price between 1080 and 720 isn't that large anymore, but it can depend on where you live. One of the cheapest (and very good at beating more expensive models) is the full 1080p Benq w1070. For 720 there's the Optoma 181 and acer 5380 though they may be called something different in different regions.
If you can afford the w1070, that'll be the best by far. If you can't, keep in mind that even the cheapest DLPs have better contrast than any LCD under $ a DLP projector will be the best for a low price. They also have less visible pixels which can help make lower resolution models look less pixelated and jagged than a similar LCD model.

There are some very cheap lower than 720 DLPs which might warrant a look depending on your budget.
How much can you afford and how much does the w1070 cost in your region?
Rairun's Avatar Rairun 09:56 AM 09-02-2014
I live in Turkey. Benq W1070 is 1050 USD here. I could bring it from Germany for 853 USD but still, it's too expensive for me. (I'll even build the screen myself.)

I could bring H5380bd from Germany but it is 470 USD, and 800 USD in Turkey. This is why 300 USD seems like a good deal for me. Well, I've talked to the guy selling it. I can go and try the projector with him. So if we assume it has no problem, is it a good or bad move?
Ftoast's Avatar Ftoast 10:23 AM 09-02-2014
There's still the chance it's been dropped or not always vented properly and will work fine at first but die in a month or few. It's also really easy to reset the usage hours so a very used projector says it only has 600hrs in the menu.

Personally, I'd pay the extra 170USD to get a new device with fresh lamp and warranty. Sometimes you can find cheaper refurbished projectors that are sold still with a warranty from the company. That might be something to look into.
Rairun's Avatar Rairun 12:35 PM 09-02-2014
So you are saying 720p is not so bad for that screen size and viewing distance?
Ftoast's Avatar Ftoast 01:36 PM 09-02-2014
It depends on the person and projector to some extent (some DLP have nearly invisible pixel-gaps while others aren't as great..though they'll still be better than a 720 LCD). That size and seating distance should be alright for 720 I believe, yes.
Rairun's Avatar Rairun 02:11 PM 09-02-2014
Thank you very much!
Rairun's Avatar Rairun 03:35 AM 09-03-2014
I've just found a used Epson 5010 at 650 hours for 440 USD. I think this is a great deal. I've read many reviews and they all say it's a great ht projector. It is 1080p but LCD, i don't know if this is an disadvantage...
Ftoast's Avatar Ftoast 05:03 AM 09-03-2014
Originally Posted by Rairun View Post
I've just found a used Epson 5010 at 650 hours for 440 USD. I think this is a great deal. I've read many reviews and they all say it's a great ht projector. It is 1080p but LCD, i don't know if this is an disadvantage...
Buying used is the scary part. The 5010 is an amazing projector, but that price sounds suspiciously low for a good, working unit.

Also, if your planning to use it for several hours each day, the cheaper new projectors use less expensive replacement lamps and some of them tend to go through lamps slower as well.
Just a warning that the price of ownership can be more expensive for many of the higher-end projectors (ones that brand-new typically cost over 1800-2000USD).
Ftoast's Avatar Ftoast 05:21 AM 09-03-2014
If the Acer 5380bd is too high, try seeing if any of these are any cheaper:
Acer 5370
Optoma h180x
Optoma hd66
Optoma dw326e
Benq mw519
Benq mw523

These are all 720p DLPs and some might be very well priced new.
The mw519 is probably the cheapest of the bunch..harder to find I think, but it's a 720hd projector for the price of a standard definition one over here.
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