What is the difference between a home theater projector and data projector?? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 12-15-2006, 10:39 PM - Thread Starter
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What is the difference between a home theater projector and data projector??

Is there darker blacks, better color, etc on a home theater projector? Why is the lumen output so low on home theater projectors? Why not use a data projector with 2200 lumens for a home theater projector and have a bright screen? I am a little confused as to the differences.

Pros, cons?

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post #2 of 10 Old 12-15-2006, 11:14 PM
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I used a borrowed office pJ to see how it would work in my room and later bought an IFSP4805.

16 x 9 vs 4x3

better contrast

more system friendly menus for HT tweakers

HDMI, DVI and component inputs vs S video at the best and composite for most

Brightness is just one factor as your home is and should be different than an office presentation.

Remote controls are for HT use instead of a power point use.

Processing for best picture quality using DCDI or other graphics chips.

Most business PJs are set up for table top instead of ceiling mounting.

Being quiet and cooler running is more oreinted towards HT.


Really, you can use any PJ to watch TV or a movie. In fact, I remember some Audio magazine years ago which pooh poohed some letter writer who wanted to hook up a business PJ for his house instead of buying a big CRT RPTV. 5 years ago your choice was basically finding an acceptable business PJ for hiome use. The X1 comes to mind as one of those products which forged a path for hobbyists.

Compare the business market to the consumer market and I think the consumer demand has made the PJ mfgers bring out new products each year with more features for less money. Business PJs have basically been a static industry for years and years. The market was over what to use for a computer signal to be seen by many vs a HD signal seen by few in a home.

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post #3 of 10 Old 12-15-2006, 11:38 PM - Thread Starter
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That really hasn't answered the question. Why would i want a "home theater" projector with 800 Lumens vs a 2000 Lumens data projector for the same price. Just calling a projector a "Home Theater" projector and cutting the lumens in half and selling it for the same price as the 2000 lumens projector is just insane.

What makes a "Home Theater" so special that 800 lumens is enough???

I just don't get the insanely low lumens output for the same price.

Considering that the 800 lumens projector at half lamp life is only putting out probably 200 lumens i don't see the reason to buy a "Home Theater" projector vs a "Data" projector that puts out 2000 lumens for the same price...same inputs, same contrast etc.

I appreciate any help on this.

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post #4 of 10 Old 12-16-2006, 12:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SOKO
Why would i want a "home theater" projector with 800 Lumens vs a 2000 Lumens data projector for the same price.
Because a "so-called" 2000 lumen projector is designed to show power-point presentations in brightly lit hotel conference rooms. There is usually no big effort made to produce accurate colours or proper grayscale tracking. They are generally optimized for computer screen formats and tend to use slow colour wheels which can result in "rainbow effect". They often have white segments in the colour wheel to exaggerate the contrast ratio and usually do not have HDCP compatible digital inputs.

An HT projector is designed to show movies and give you accurate colours and proper gray scale, accept HDCP encrypted signals from DVD players and cable/satellite boxes, eliminate RBE and generally provide a considerably superior picture quality in wide-screen, movie/TV formats.

The lumen values found on HT projectors are appropriate for industry standard target brightness in light-controlled environment. The SMPTE standard brightness is 12-16fL.

A typical calibrated brightness of 600 lumens (as is found on the popular InFocus SP4805 at low power) will produce 24fL on a typical 92" image on a standard white wall (with 1.0 gain). Most AVSers who own the SP4805 actually put a neutral density filter on the 4805 to cut its brightness in half to 12fL. The when the lamp ages and dims, they remove the filter to make it brighter again. (You can get exactly the same results on a 106" image with an 800 "calibrated lumen" projector.)

In the same setup, a "so-called" 2000 lumen business projector will produce 80fL of brightness - FIVE TIMES too bright! In a theatre environment, watching movies for a few hours, the viewer will develop headaches and eyestrain. The reflected light from the screen will illuminate the room, destroying black levels in the image. Sunglasses would be appropriate!

Even the 200 lumen output you scoff at will produce a standard brightness 92" image if you use a screen with a gain of 1.5

The answer to your question, in short, is that the HT projector will give you a superior movie experience in a home theatre!

"The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance  it is the illusion of knowledge." - Daniel Boorstin
"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
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post #5 of 10 Old 12-16-2006, 12:23 AM
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The brighter the projector, the more washed out the picture can be, AFAIK. Before I got decent color on my Sharp I had a very bright pic, but when I finally got it tweaked, the picture was much darker. Still, it's very bright, but raw brightness isn't all there is to a good picture.
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post #6 of 10 Old 12-16-2006, 12:30 AM
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Most home theater projectors calibrate to 300-650 lumens. A home theater unit that calibrates to 800 lumens is considered extremely bright. A 2000+ lumen business projector is what you get with a white segment and horribly miscalibrated picture. You'll usually get blown out whites, more washed out colors, higher black level, worse contrast, worse shadow detail, etc. Even lots of data projectors don't reach their lumen specs and that lumen rating drops considerably when calibrated for home theater. The contrast rating also drops considerably when calibrated for film, becasue they measure the contrast at settings you would not want to use for film material or hardly anything else.

I don't know where you get that an 800 lumen home theater unit (as rare as they are once calibrated) would turn into a 200 lumen pj at the halway point. That's a 75% loss or brightness. You're way off there.

CRT projectors, which blow away these digital projectors (not that you can tell from an 11' tall screenshot taken with a camcorder at 1/15th shutter) have even less brightness. My ECP4500+, for insance, is about 150ANSI lumens with 700 peak lumens (all white). My 4805 puts outs about 600ANSI lumesn when calibrated. Here is a screenshot of me playing around with my ECP at 11 feet tall (about 19+ feet wide if the walls didn't cut off the rest of the image) on my negative gain pale grey wall:

The screenshot was taken from cheap digital camcorder and was blurred a bit to remove camcorder grain. You may need to gamma correct your monitor in order to properly view them.
http://img141.imageshack.us/img141/4...mars2coau6.jpg

Here are some huge shots of my 4805 on my pale grey wall (broom in the shot as a reference). My camcorder couldn't capture the brightness my eyes see, but it'll do:

http://img182.imageshack.us/img182/8314/pbbig44hq7.jpg


This is with my 4805 and custom high gain silver torus screen:

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2004-...y-7-(4805).gif

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2004-...ad-Clark-3.jpg

http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2004-9/841594/4805-3.jpg
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post #7 of 10 Old 12-16-2006, 01:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SOKO
That really hasn't answered the question. Why would i want a "home theater" projector with 800 Lumens vs a 2000 Lumens data projector for the same price. Just calling a projector a "Home Theater" projector and cutting the lumens in half and selling it for the same price as the 2000 lumens projector is just insane.
The extra cost goes into a lot of the afore mentioned items. As for why less brightness is better, if you used a 2000 lumen business projector to view a movie, your deepest blacks would be gray. Letterboxed movies would have gray bars, not black bars, and your shadow detail would be out the window, around the corner, and halfway down the street.
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post #8 of 10 Old 12-16-2006, 01:12 AM
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I fear we are wasting our breath.

This guy already has a BenQ PB8220 2200 ANSI and is thinking of going with the Da-Lite High Power 2.8 Gain.

"The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance  it is the illusion of knowledge." - Daniel Boorstin
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post #9 of 10 Old 12-16-2006, 04:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cavu
I fear we are wasting our breath.

This guy already has a BenQ PB8220 2200 ANSI and is thinking of going with the Da-Lite High Power 2.8 Gain.

I checked one of his posts and he said he tried the high power with his projector and it was too much so he stuck with 1.3 gain.
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post #10 of 10 Old 12-16-2006, 07:47 AM
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If you mod (paint the clear segment of the DLP color wheel, alter colors with photographic filters, build hushbox, build cat eye iris behind the PJ focusing lens) a business class PJ it may improve the image. The NEC LT150 is business class but after the mods it is nice enough for HT until recently.

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