It's great that you've had such success with your inexpensive replacement.
I think the UHP lamp industry is going to really be set on ear in the next few years. With Epson delivering a 5,000 hour $99 lamp on the 2030 projector, it's the start of what I forsee as the future of UHP lamps. That is, direct competition with LED is going to force lamp pricing down and quality up. Rumors of a 10,000 hour lamp from Epson have been shot my way. I am hopeful that we will just see the pricing fall and quality improve so that the 5,000-10,000 hour lamp life is common with sub $100 replacement costs. Why would anyone in their right mind use a sub 500 lumen LED projector with lousy optics and a higher price tag if the entire UHP industry delivered a better product from the manufacturers?
For what it's worth: The housing should always be replaced with the bulb. Always. A lamp that runs at several hundred degrees sitting next to a cheap reflector is not an ideal situation. The reflector expands and contracts and while it is not enormous, it does warp and bend and lose it's alignment over the 3,000+ hours of usage it is rated for. It is not just the bulb that is rated to the manufacturer's specifications, but the entire lamp assembly. It deteriorates. While some people may feel that this doesn't matter, and is trivial, I'm not going to bet my projector on this, and this is one of the reasons why some of the 'bulb only' replacement options can cause overheating of the projector and scorched optics.
Good choice in getting a solidly cheaper solution with the manufacturer name on it.
Wish more manufacturers would step up with identical lamp assemblies across more of their models with a common part number and a lower price tag. It would make things so much cheaper for them, and consumers more willing to buy their product.