JVC Projectors at CES 2017

JVC Projector

Most new projectors are introduced at CEDIA, so I was surprised to find three new JVC projectors at CES this year. They are updates to the three current models offering some improvements—including a 100-lumen bump in peak light output—over what are already some of the best consumer projectors available today. As you may know, JVC markets its projectors under two banners—Reference Series for direct consumer purchase and Procision through installers—and the model numbers are different in each case, even though the corresponding models perform identically.

All three of the new projectors use JVC’s 4K e-Shift technology, in which the pixels generated by 1080p imagers are rapidly shifted diagonally between two position to simulate 4K/UHD resolution. And like last year’s models, the new units can reproduce HDR images from HDR10 signals—with the added bonus of automatically switching to HDR mode when HDR metadata is detected. Also new this year is support for HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) HDR and a low-latency mode for gaming that reduces the latency from seven to two frames.

At the entry level, the DLA-X570R/RS420 has a peak light output of 1800 lumens and a 40,000:1 native contrast ratio (400,000:1 dynamic). Next up the food chain is the DLA-X770R/RS520 with a peak light output of 1900 lumens and a native contrast ratio of 130,000:1 (1,300,000:1 dynamic), and it’s THX 3D certified. At the top of the heap is the DLA-X970R/RS620 with 2000 lumens of peak light output and 160,000:1 native contrast ratio (1,600,000:1 dynamic) with THX 3D certification.

The JVC booth is located in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center, where all the automotive stuff is—and JVC-Kenwood has plenty of products for that market. The projectors are tucked away in a corner of the booth, along with a blacked out demo theater with a DLA-X970R/RS620 being fed from a Samsung K8500 UHD Blu-ray player and firing onto a 120″ Screen Innovations Slate 0.8 screen. The demo material—World of Warcraft—is not my cup of tea, but it looks fantastic in that environment, with super-deep blacks, bright highlights, and rich colors.

The new projectors will be available this month for the same prices as last year’s models—$4000 for the X570R/RS420, $7000 for the X770R/RS520, and $10,000 for the X970R/RS620.