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1,2x Zoom, No image shift, No buttons on the projector.
This was my first projector. At that time I was considering getting a 50" plasma TV, but a friend who already owned a 720p projector "convinced me" (a simple demonstration at his place was enough) to forget about 50" screens when it comes to home cinema!
I must admit, this is one of my very few purchases based solely on reviews, as I was not able to find this model anywhere on display. All the other alternatives at that time though, were -in theory- inferior to the X10. And when the time came and I saw 1st hand (or eye ) the image the X10 produced I must say that I thought even all the positive reviews I had read didn't give it enough credit!
So, enough with the story, the first thing that I noticed once I unpacked it was a nice big old scratch (!) on the lens, accompanied by a couple more minor ones. So the feature I got to check out was the Infocus Customer Care division. And what a surprise that was! UPS was at my door the next morning and a few weeks later a brand new X10 was delivered!
I picked a 120" OP screen to project my images. Everything was planned ahead, since my room is just perfect for the X10 is a really long-throw projector! For that 120" image it must be set at 16ft (roughly 5m). That was no problem, but that also meant that the viewer must sit in front of the projector, which would have to be placed exactly in the center and almost 2ft outside (be that below or above) the picture frame, since there is no image shift, and the Keystone adjustment is not really my thing, because even though it doesn't visibly distort the image (well, the distortion becomes visible once you get closer than 6ft to the screen, but I tend to sit at 10+ft away) it also shrinks the image, which put me off since I ran out of space. So it was a bit of an inconvenience, having to place the X10 that low (a ceiling base was not an option) but it worked out.
My main concern was the rainbow effect. I had seen it on some very old models at school and I knew just how bad it can get. The other reviewers stated that it exists on the X10, but does not annoy. I must say I have not -to this day- been able to see it at all. The only way I saw the color separation was by lifting my hand up into the projector's beam and waving really fast, then I would see a few of my fingers being red, others green and blue!
So that was a relief, as well as a great accomplishment of the X10. The 7x color wheel obviously does a great job!
The resolution (1920x1080) is great. I have to get closer than 3ft on that 120" screen to be able to tell the pixels apart, and even closer (just over 1ft) to start noticing the sub-pixels.
The colors are quit nice, there's a "brilliant color" option in the menu, but I actually prefer not using this feature! Color temps are also there for anyone's taste, I only adjusted the Iris (needless to say already being in Eco mode) down to 36/100 for films and 73/100 for sports and documentaries.
Blacks... well.... blacks! Two things I can tell you! One, I haven't seen the IN82 DC3 projector, but I can believe a reviewer's claim that the DC1 chip in the X10 is actually more like that DC3 chip. I have seen other DC1 projectors and they're not even close to producing the same black levels as this one.
Two, just make sure that not only you have a dark room, but as few reflections as possible. My screen has a 2" black bar surrounding it, but I still had to paint that bright white housing it rolls into because of the reflections! I think the X10 beats and LCD projector up to $3000 easily when it comes to blacks, and as for the contrast... well again the 1100:1 of the X10 looks better than those 70k-200k:1 the LCD's claim to have.
The motion doesn't look anything like the new 1000's-Hz-TV's but it does look and feel a lot like your good old cinema. I didn't mind that for years (if anything, I liked it)... Until the Hobbit 48fps Blu-ray came out just recently! And what a treat was I in for! Of course I had tested some 60fps 'samples' before, but with this baby my X10 beat my brand new 52" TV with ease! I now cross my fingers that instead of moving up to 4K displays we simply move to true-48fps/1080p films! Forget about the over-hyped refresh rates (which cause all sorts of distortions), this, the only real "refresh rate", is what will change the game!
The remote is a nice back-lit glossy little thing, with a flashlight button in the back, if your room is really dark and you need to find anything. But I would have appreciated at least a simple On-Off button on the X10's body. There is not a singly button on it, and I did visit my family one summer with my X10 with me but... without the remote (!) only to spend 6 weeks without properly watching a single movie! There is a M1-DA link but even though I gave it a try it wouldn't control the X10 through a PC. I guess this is a feature meant for different models. Anyway, the menus are a child's play to navigate, but still allow you for dozens of adjustments! I also like the "1-2-3" source buttons on the remote for instant 'menu-less' access to different sources.
I am still to this day very much in love with the X10, I still haven't crossed the lamp's lifetime (in Eco that should be 2500-3000hrs) and I will be upgrading to 3D sometime in the next 12 months (my friend I mentioned earlier already has a Epson 3D projector and it is wonderful in 3D). I was considering a dual-projection 3D system, but after seeing the prices of new, single 3D projectors drop to almost my X10's original value, I may be heading that way, since it will save me the cost of a new lamp, plus, long-term, much more on the power bills!