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Need help in decision!

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
I am in the process of setting up a new home theater room. I am looking for a projector and have been perusing reviews, feedback, issues etc on the forum.

I think right now I am down to 2 possibilities (due to room brightness/color for now). The Panasonic PT-AE8000U and the Sony VPL-HW50ES. It seems like the Sony has an edge over the Panasonic as far as clarity and color. In some reviews brightness (calibrayed) was better as well.

The struggle I have is about value. The Sony is around $1500 more than the Panasonic. Are the added features and color brilliance worth the difference? The Panny has some features the Sony does not as well.

Projector Central did a side by side and gave the edge to the Sony but said the Panny was a great projector overall.

Any feedback from current owners? Has anyone done a side by side in their home?

My theater will be in a basement, low ambient light after curtain install. I could paint the ceiling black if needed. Walls are a medium brown. 120" screen will be purchased, probably targetting a 1 - 1.3 gain (if needed that hight - both a bright). Thoughts on gain was viewing during day with curtains open, Some light comes down open stairway (cannot block).

Thoughts?
post #2 of 23
I had the same decision, I bought the Sony for high calibrated brightness with great color and blacks (Panaonic cannot match), much better gaming lag, and the reality creation sharpening which I frankly love in combination with the darbee. I got the Sony for $2800 from Magnolia AV (just quote sales prices and use reward card) with free bulb and 2 pairs of glasses. If you need lens memory or can't control light go with the panasonic, otherwise spend the extra. My 2c.
post #3 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by grasswaiting View Post

I had the same decision, I bought the Sony for high calibrated brightness with great color and blacks (Panaonic cannot match), much better gaming lag, and the reality creation sharpening which I frankly love in combination with the darbee. I got the Sony for $2800 from Magnolia AV (just quote sales prices and use reward card) with free bulb and 2 pairs of glasses. If you need lens memory or can't control light go with the panasonic, otherwise spend the extra. My 2c.

Thanks for the feedback.

I just checked BestBuy and did not see the 50 on the site, only the 30 (which I saw in my local Magnolia which made me think about Sony in the first place). Did you store have it but not on the site? I am not sure why I would not see it there. I would think it would show up even if out of stock.
post #4 of 23
Rep I went with below, great guy to work with. No they don't show all their projectors online by a long shot. Also, Magnolia is owned by Best Buy but not the same thing as the little section in some stores.

Daniel Metzer - magnolia AV
+1 (443) 534-6473
post #5 of 23
Yes...I too would like to know where you got a Sony HW-50 for 2800...none of the Magnolias around my area even have it in stock
post #6 of 23
Did they have it in stock, or did you need to wait for it to be shipped?
post #7 of 23
Shipped it
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by grasswaiting View Post

Shipped it

Wel that is an incredible price you got. I don't think anyone else is close. I found some on Google but not authorized retailers and they were a few hundred higher. Even the HW30ES is priced at close to that!

I will give him a call and see what he can do!
post #9 of 23
I called him and he said he can't do that price FYI.

He said that was a special price match. What site did you price match it from? That is indeed an incredible deal.
Edited by baloo_btru - 8/4/13 at 9:40am
post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by grasswaiting View Post

Shipped it

Thanx bro for the heads up!...It took some finigeling, but I was able to buy one for 2999 plus tax at a (not so near) Magnolia best buy. BTW, it has to be a design center magnolia...Not all Magnolias will do this deal. I'm going to pick it up right now!
Edited by aries1210 - 8/4/13 at 7:37pm
post #11 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by aries1210 View Post

Thanx bro for the heads up!...It took some finigeling, but I was able to buy one for 2900 plus tax at a (not so near) Magnolia best buy. BTW, it has to be a design center magnolia...Not all Magnolias will do this deal. I'm going to pick it up right now!

That's incredible considering most places are still full retail!

I will check around some. I have some other leads I need to check also. Not as good of a deal but pretty close!
post #12 of 23
How are you guys getting these deals? Thats far from what my local magnolia (design center) offered.

Also, I spoke to the guy mentioned and he said the deal wasn't that low and he can't get it that low unless you purchase a whole home theater. Which means he is making his margins on other items anyway. The only benefit over AVS is the better return policy (15 days, which is very good). However the service from AVS (and Mike) is top notch and he has been very helpful in general answering questions and helping me out. I'll spend a couple hundred extra for that.

Plus you'll have to pay tax, which negates most (if any) difference.
Edited by baloo_btru - 8/4/13 at 12:38pm
post #13 of 23
Seriously you guys should just talk to Mike here at the forums. He is incredibly! knowledgeable, will help you with all of your needs and will give you a great deal. He is also very responsive. Plus it supports these forums which all of us make great use of.
post #14 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by baloo_btru View Post

Seriously you guys should just talk to Mike here at the forums. He is incredibly! knowledgeable, will help you with all of your needs and will give you a great deal. He is also very responsive. Plus it supports these forums which all of us make great use of.





plus 1.
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by baloo_btru View Post

How are you guys getting these deals? Thats far from what my local magnolia (design center) offered.

Also, I spoke to the guy mentioned and he said the deal wasn't that low and he can't get it that low unless you purchase a whole home theater. Which means he is making his margins on other items anyway. The only benefit over AVS is the better return policy (15 days, which is very good). However the service from AVS (and Mike) is top notch and he has been very helpful in general answering questions and helping me out. I'll spend a couple hundred extra for that.

Plus you'll have to pay tax, which negates most (if any) difference.

At first, the salesman at my Magnolia Design Center said he couldn't do it, but then I had him call Daniel Metzer - magnolia AV
+1 (443) 534-6473 after an hour or so my local guy called me back and said he would honor the price and split the commission with Daniel...BTW, the only reason I did it this way (instead of AVS) was because my Magnolia had one in stock for a theater build (someone elses projector)...but the build would not be completed for a couple months so they agreed to sell me that one and reorder one for the build....(I got real lucky today) :0)
Edited by aries1210 - 8/4/13 at 1:18pm
post #16 of 23
Projector People sells it for under 3K. I bought mine from Michael Norton 800/639-3010 x 2055.
post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by plasmaowner View Post

Projector People sells it for under 3K. I bought mine from Michael Norton 800/639-3010 x 2055.

50ES or 30ES? 50ES is at full price which is way above that.

Anyway, I still have to make a decision soon. If I can get the Sony around 43k I will buy it. If not, I may have to go with the Panny. That extra money could go towards a nice screen!
post #18 of 23
Sony VPL-HW50ES was a penny under 3K when I bought it back in January from PP. Several other AVS members have purchased from them at that price.
post #19 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by plasmaowner View Post

Sony VPL-HW50ES was a penny under 3K when I bought it back in January from PP. Several other AVS members have purchased from them at that price.

Then I guess I might have to wait. $1000 off is a lot for me!
post #20 of 23
Thread Starter 
Does AVS ever have sales? I will have to call Mike and discuss also.
post #21 of 23
Thread Starter 
Back to my original question, is the Sony almost twice as good as the Panny, based on current easily obtainable prices? Just in case I don't see some deals down the road soon!
post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by madurodave View Post

Back to my original question, is the Sony almost twice as good as the Panny, based on current easily obtainable prices? Just in case I don't see some deals down the road soon!

I have owned the VW-90 and the VW-95 and almost "all" of the Panasonic models...The Sony is a better projector. I am waiting for he Sony 55 model due out later this year....This 50 model is just to fill in till I get the 55. The Panasonics are my favorite of the LCD variety...but Sony rules over it in PQ
post #23 of 23
Glad I helped a fellow AVSer save some money. I think the Sony hw50es under $3k is a great way to wait for 4k to come down to similar levels with content in 3-5 years.
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