I'm trying to register my 8350 on Epson's site at this link:
After I select the Projector family, I can't find the Powerlite Home Cinema (HC) 8350 listed in the available Model choices. Am I blind?
Do you mean 2011 series (ie 609) or new 2012 series (ie 616)?
I'm using an older Onkyo 607 (and 45 ft. of HDMI cable) ... not a single problem here.
My copy of Avatar on Blu-Ray is 1.78:1, so it fills the whole 16:9 screen nicely. A 1.85:1 is pretty close also (thin horizontal bars).
Personally, I just enjoy seeing the whole picture (in the proper aspect ratio), and ignore any bars (really just lack of picture) that might appear.
I hesitate to answer because I've never had this problem or ever opened a 3LCD projector. I have opened and successfully serviced an Optima DLP projector (overheating ... just needed to be cleaned out real good). I have many years experience opening and repairing consumer electronics, computers, monitors, TVs, dumb terminals, etc.
Whoever does this, needs to be familiar with working inside projectors. Not only so they don't kill themselves on high-voltage, but also so a small problem (dust) doesn't turn major (blown circuit board). If you don't know how to remove bulb ... that's a good sign that you should seek professional help.
What would I do if it was mine ... Carefully open projector (remove top cover). Carefully clean out the dust. Don't touch or move any lenses or mirrors. Reassemble. Test operation.
Check warranty and remember that sometimes credit cards extend purchases. That being said, I would never trade a new machine for a refurb ... if it only had a minor problem. Sometimes you end up with someone elses problems. Also, I have yet to find an electronic machine that works better after multiple trips through UPS system.