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post #1 of 15 Old 01-18-2017, 09:03 PM - Thread Starter
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best project for movies under $500?

Hi there! Was hoping I could get some advice on a projector. Am looking to purchase a projector, either new or used. Will mostly be used for movies, maybe some gaming. My budget is <$500. I know it won't be amazing for that price, but was hoping to find something decent. The distance to the wall is about 14 feet. Any advice would be much appreciated!
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post #2 of 15 Old 01-18-2017, 11:53 PM
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This one has really good reviews:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B01HQ...c4L&ref=plSrch
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post #3 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 12:22 AM
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post #4 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 12:37 AM
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Or the 1075 if you can find a deal.
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post #5 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 06:20 AM
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I will actually throw one out that is under 500.

It is the projector I have been currently using for going on 2 years. It is brand new and comes with a warranty of 1 year on the lamp and 3 on the projector. It is WXGA resolution and I use it connected to my laptop, BD player, OTA TV tuner etc. it is all set up to do 3D. I reviewed all the cheap projectors that were called business crossovers of the DLP type and felt this one gave the best and highest color lumen output. The image out of the box is splendid and for a screen all I use is a wall painted a medium gray with regular old wall paint. Check out the review at projector central it is quite correct IMO.

The retail price has been right around 430 for the last year and it goes on sale a couple times a year for 365 is what I paid. I will be watching this projector without upgrade plans any time soon it looks that good to me.

https://www.amazon.com/ViewSonic-PJD.../dp/B00RPJON8E

My review
ViewSonic LightStream PJD5555W, Man Cave Theater *Unofficial* Thread

PC review
http://www.projectorcentral.com/view...e=Key-Features

PC specs
http://www.projectorcentral.com/ViewSonic-PJD5555w.htm

PC calculator
http://www.projectorcentral.com/View...ulator-pro.htm


On edit I see you also will be using it for gaming. PC measure it at input lag of 33 ms. I don’t do games that much but I’m told that is a pretty respectable number.

Bud

Last edited by bud16415; 01-19-2017 at 06:27 AM.
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post #6 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 08:21 AM
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The big rub on the projectors at the price you are looking at.

The Viewsonic listed above is 1280x800 resolution. It's a solid enough model, but lower in resolution than the other two links provided. BRIGHTNESS AFTER CALIBRATION: About 1,400 lumens in bright mode, less in low lamp mode

The Optoma is a brand new model and is a heck of a deal. It is 1920x1080 (1080p) resolution. But, it uses a 2x color wheel. BRIGHTNESS AFTER CALIBRATION: Under 1,000 lumens

The BenQ W1070, W1075, or newest HT2050 are all 1920x1080 projectors with 6x color wheels. They have been considered as one of the best 'bang for the buck' projectors for several years. BRIGHTNESS AFTER CALIBRATION: About 1,200 to 1,400 lumens.

This is a 161" diagonal image with the W1070, to give you an idea of what spending an extra 100 bucks gives you.

W1070 With The Lights On - 161" Screen

That said, if your budget is really tight, and you gotta stay under $500, then the Viewsonic is well reviewed and certainly a solid way to go despite the lower resolution.

AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology installation in the Washington DC metro area.
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post #7 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AV_Integrated View Post

This is a 161" diagonal image with the W1070, to give you an idea of what spending an extra 100 bucks gives you.
The truth is a screen shot off my Viewsonic on a 161” screen would look just about the same. The question is at his seating distance and how good his eyes are will the difference in resolution be an issue.

Here is an attachment I made that anyone can copy and print off and use to get a truthful feel for enhanced resolution. If printed to an 8.5 x 11 paper it will be a true resolution guide for a 110” screen.

Most people sit 2X to 4X the screen height for levels of immersion they feel is comfortable.
Or in this case let’s call it 10’, 15’, 20’. Print out the attachment and in a bright room look at it from those 3 distances and check your acuity between 720 and 1080. Keep in mind this is a bright room with a grid of black and white and your eyes will be at their sharpest acuity. In reality you will be in a dark room the pixels will be in millions of colors and the colors will be moving.

I’m assuming the OP is new to projection so he doesn’t yet know the screen size he will want to watch from his seating distance. The viewsonic I suggested is a fairly long throw projector. He said the distance to the wall is 14’ and if the lens of the projector was 12’7” from the wall / screen he would be throwing a 110” 16:9 image and watching it at something like a 2.5 X screen height distance. That would satisfy most people’s immersion likes.
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post #8 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 08:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AV_Integrated View Post
The BenQ W1070, W1075, or newest HT2050 are all 1920x1080 projectors with 6x color wheels. They have been considered as one of the best 'bang for the buck' projectors for several years. BRIGHTNESS AFTER CALIBRATION: About 1,200 to 1,400 lumens.
.
Which of those 3 BENQ models would you recommend?
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post #9 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 09:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blair Wendell View Post
Which of those 3 BENQ models would you recommend?
I don’t want to speak for AV_Integrated but without a doubt I would go with the HT2050.

Bud
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post #10 of 15 Old 01-19-2017, 09:06 AM
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Used or refurbed epson 8350, check ebay, C.L. or interweb
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post #11 of 15 Old 03-03-2017, 02:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bud16415 View Post
I will actually throw one out that is under 500.

It is the projector I have been currently using for going on 2 years. It is brand new and comes with a warranty of 1 year on the lamp and 3 on the projector. It is WXGA resolution and I use it connected to my laptop, BD player, OTA TV tuner etc. it is all set up to do 3D. I reviewed all the cheap projectors that were called business crossovers of the DLP type and felt this one gave the best and highest color lumen output. The image out of the box is splendid and for a screen all I use is a wall painted a medium gray with regular old wall paint. Check out the review at projector central it is quite correct IMO.

The retail price has been right around 430 for the last year and it goes on sale a couple times a year for 365 is what I paid. I will be watching this projector without upgrade plans any time soon it looks that good to me.

https://www.amazon.com/ViewSonic-PJD.../dp/B00RPJON8E

My review
ViewSonic LightStream PJD5555W, Man Cave Theater *Unofficial* Thread

PC review
http://www.projectorcentral.com/view...e=Key-Features

PC specs
http://www.projectorcentral.com/ViewSonic-PJD5555w.htm

PC calculator
http://www.projectorcentral.com/View...ulator-pro.htm


On edit I see you also will be using it for gaming. PC measure it at input lag of 33 ms. I don’t do games that much but I’m told that is a pretty respectable number.
This and the BenQ MW526A seem to be competing for those looking for a 720p projector in the $400 range. I'd like to know how they compare but I haven't been able to find any comparisons.

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post #12 of 15 Old 03-03-2017, 05:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soulburner View Post
This and the BenQ MW526A seem to be competing for those looking for a 720p projector in the $400 range. I'd like to know how they compare but I haven't been able to find any comparisons.
The BenQ MW526A has a color wheel with 92 degree white segment 26% and very small CY segments. It is said to produce 660 good color lumens of the 3300 overall lumens.

The Viewsonic PJD5555W has a much smaller white segment 57 degrees 16% and larger CY segments. More important I feel is the amount of the color wheel given over to RGB is greater when comparing the two. Thus the good color lumens is said to be 860 with 3200 overall lumens.

The source of this information is the site colorlightoutput.com and keep in mind they compute color brightness by adding together only the RGB outputs I’m told.

There is some positives to the CYW segments in producing some colors and maintaining very reasonable color quality. For example having a yellow segment makes making some of the bright yellows much more efficient than making them from RGB alone just as having a white segment seems logical in producing a brighter color than making white by RGB. The positive effects of non RGB blending is seen as when a projector like the PJD5555W is actually measured in its best mode of movie presentation the readings come back 1000 lumens or higher.

I don’t profess to understand the methods different projector companies use to blend in these non RGB colors to make the same colors they would in a RGBRGB projector or if they even use them to expand the color gamut as they could in theory. They mainly adopted the idea as a trick to produce very high lumen business projectors without talking about a white segment as consumers caught on to that trick. Very few people seem to know very little about how it all actually works and having had the PJD5555W for going on 2 years and looking at the color wheel makeup and actual reviews of dozens in this same crossover group I felt it was one that had the greatest potential of all the ones I reviewed to do a good job with the non RGB segments and of course I was looking for the best for the least, and staying in the <$400 price point.

Without knowing how the color wheel is managed and no equipment to measure things with other than my eyes and others eye I have had watch it with me. I concluded This projector does a great job to about its mid overall lumen rating. So up to say 1500 lumens. I would say it would more than exceed my expectations of a <$400 projector and other than resolution PQ is on par with an RGBRGB at double the price point as I don’t know of a good recent 720p RGBRGB projector as there isn’t a market for one.

Above the midpoint of the total lumens output the PQ does not fail instantly and to be honest the projector is marketed as a business machine and never makes claims to have 3200 lumens of pure movie output. The analogy I make is what is needed in the classroom to try and maintain some CR and what is needed in a garage with a bunch of guys watching a football game are similar qualities. You may be willing to sacrifice some color accuracy for raw lumens of any type to try and get a CR that you can watch. That’s what this does that a RGBRGB will run out of gas trying to do. I might add if you compare the specs of any of these RGBCYW’s to RGBRGB’s you will notice the wattage max of the projectors quite a bit different the RGBCYW will be around 250w and the RGBRGB 350w. so you are getting more CR producing lumens from less power. Of course the people building the machines see that as a cost savings to make as well.

That’s my best comparison of the two projectors you mentioned and I had the BenQ on my list and picked the Viewsonic based around the color wheel design. I don’t think a whole lot of research is going into trying to get better colors out of RGBXXX projectors at this low price point. I was surprised the PJD came out as a new projector and seemed to be moving in the right direction and it also had a lot of HT type features built in as well like 3D and even anamorphic compression. Some other nice features that would never be used in the classroom. So who knows some people might still be working on making a bargain basement projector better.
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post #13 of 15 Old 03-03-2017, 10:40 AM
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You can definitely get a "decent" projector for ~$500, whether new or factory refurbished. There are tradeoffs with every model as each has a different balance of strengths and weaknesses. So the more we know about your personal wants and needs the more we can zero in on recommending the best projector for you.

Some basic information that would be helpful to know includes:

Do you have any previous experience with front projection?

Do you know if you are sensitive to seeing rainbows when viewing video from a DLP projector?

Will you always be viewing in the dark or sometimes with ambient light (which washes out a front projection image), and if with ambient light can you estimate how much?

Are you planning to project on a wall or buy a screen, and if buying a screen have you figured that into your budget?

Do you have any idea how big an image you want to view (diagonal in inches) or are you planning to experiment on a wall to find the size that fits you best?

Do you already have a sound system (projectors have tiny speakers equivalent to a small table radio) and if not have you figured that into your budget?
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I ended up grabbing the Viewsonic PJD5555W for $335 refurbished. From what I gather I probably can't beat that

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post #15 of 15 Old Today, 06:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soulburner View Post
I ended up grabbing the Viewsonic PJD5555W for $335 refurbished. From what I gather I probably can't beat that
I don’t think you can beat it for the price.

What size screen will you have? What is your rooms walls / ceiling, and lighting like? What screen have you selected?

Keep us posted on what you think of it.

Have fun.

Bud
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