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PowerLite 485W by Epson - Ultra Short Throw for bright T.V. anywhere.

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
Hi fellas, Long time no see. I thought this warranted a post.

I just got this projector today. I was very afraid. I have a Panasonic AE4000 in a dedicated theater on a 133” Da-Light Hi Power (the old version). Of course, it looks fantastic and I am very spoiled. However, I wanted to put this in my family room and I had no place for a normal throw, and I like having all the equipment on the same wall, just like a flat panel, also, it is great to be able to walk around the room without being blinded as you are never in the throw. I understand that gamers are going nuts over these because they are very bright, and you can stand up in front of the screen to play. This one throws from a couple of feet, so it is sitting on a 24” deep coffee table, which puts the bottom of my 100” no gain screen at 33” off the ground. Perfect viewing height, and above the equipment on the coffee table. It took some tweaking but I’m extremely happy. I was replacing a 65” Sharp LCD flat screen (going to the bedroom because it was too high over the fireplace and too small compared to the Panny. The contrast is not as good, but good enough. The screen door doesn’t show, as I am sitting 12 to 15’ away. The lens uniformity is great, as proven by the test patterns which are built in. Getting the color and contrast is the trick, but try these settings and you might be amazed. Color mode: Theater, Brightness: 0, Contrast: 7, Sharpness -5, Color Temp: 6500K, Color Adjustment: green drive -5, Auto Iris: on, Noise Reduction: off (very important). Then be amazed. I am very happy. Great picture. Not a match for the Panny, but plenty good enough to watch anything. It reminds me of the early top of the line 16:9 home theater projectors. Like 1366 x 768, but 1200 x 800, so the same. High definition, just not 1080, but essentially indistinguishable on 98% of what you will watch. This is the fastest and easiest way to get a big bright HD picture in any space. Mine came bundled with a wall mount, which I have no use for. They are really marketed for classrooms. What a WASTE of a good projector. The one bitch I have is that it only has one HDMI input, so you need a sound bar or theater in a box with enough HDMI switching to handle your satellite receiver, blu-ray player or game console, and Roku.
Edited by JHouse - 1/19/14 at 2:41pm
post #2 of 26
Thread Starter 
Still tweaking. I changed the brightness to zero and the contrast to +7 . It looks really good. My viewing distance is approximately 15 feet, and there is no screen door from 12 feet. This biggest difference I notice is shadow detail in dark scenes. But the difference isn't huge. If you relax, you stop noticing it.

The good news is that I can watch in the daytime and overcome a lot of ambient light, with a picture that still looks vivid and saturated like a $40,000 flat screen.
Edited by JHouse - 1/24/14 at 12:16pm
post #3 of 26
Thread Starter 
And I jacked the color up to +5, because I'm going for the LCD flat panel look/feel, and it's there. Cool.cool.gif
Edited by JHouse - 1/19/14 at 10:47am
post #4 of 26
Thread Starter 
If you are interested, I got this screen in the 100" diagonal size: Elite SableFrame Fixed Frame Screen

I got it together and mounted without screwing it up, and it is tight like a tiger. I've had a Hi-Power since the beginning, but for this application (smallish screen area - 3100 lumens - dramatically upward projection angle - and wide room) the off-angle viewing is perfect (which I guess I should have expected from a flat/no-gain screen). biggrin.gif
post #5 of 26
Thread Starter 
These are just phone images but:

Here is how the installation looks in a room:



And here is what the picture looks like now:

post #6 of 26
Thread Starter 
Watching the playoffs. Since I'm spoiled by the 133" upstairs, I moved my chair to 12' and the screen size is now proportional with no visible screen door from this distance. How do I measure? Hold your hand out at arms length and extend your thumb all the way up and your pinky all the way down, and view in front of the screen with one eye. That fits just perfectly between the top and bottom of the screen at my preferred distance. This is where I sit at home and in commercial theaters. Just FYI:)
post #7 of 26
I wondered how well these things would work. Great info JHouse, and great to see you post again! Coming from you, I'm sure the brightness will be adequate!
post #8 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thanks JR. With 3100 max/rated lumens on a 100" no-gain screen, it is as vivid as an LCD flat panel, which, of course, is what I was going for. If you look at the phone pictures, you can tell high brightness affects the white balance in the picture, making the screen image overexposed in the full room picture. The picture is very sharp, the closest screenshot must've been taken with pudding on my lens.
post #9 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHouse View Post

If you are interested, I got this screen in the 100" diagonal size: Elite SableFrame Fixed Frame Screen

I got it together and mounted without screwing it up, and it is tight like a tiger. I've had a Hi-Power since the beginning,
Hey, J, how does this perform with your HP screen? Too bright? How about in Eco mode? I see there is a step down version with 2600 lumens. Also, any ceiling image leakage? Fan noise?
post #10 of 26
Thread Starter 
Fan noise: not so quiet, so, yes, louder than the Panny but at my normal listening volumes, I don't hear it. No ceiling image leakage, if that means the image shooting up past the screen. It is dim on the High Power. How can that be, you say? Because the High Power is retro-reflective and shoots all the light back to the pj, which is on the ground. So you are looking at a dramatically off-axis picture from your normal viewing position, so gain from that perspective is well below unity, I'm sure (I figured that out pretty quickly, so I bent down with my head behind the projector and looked up and blinded myself. tongue.gif) Yes, I took it up to the theater just to do a fast image check to make sure I wasn't going to ship it right back as crap (before I went to the trouble of putting that damn screen together). Don't get me recommending lower lumens. biggrin.gif
Edited by JHouse - 1/22/14 at 12:48pm
post #11 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by JHouse View Post

Fan noise: not so quiet, so, yes, louder than the Panny but at my normal listening volumes, I don't hear it. No ceiling image leakage, if that means the image shooting up past the screen. It is dim on the High Power. How can that be, you say? Because the High Power is retro-reflective and shoots all the light back to the pj, which is on the ground. So you are looking at a dramatically off-axis picture from your normal viewing position, so gain from that perspective is well below unity, I'm sure (I figured that out pretty quickly, so I bent down with my head behind the projector and looked up and blinded myself. tongue.gif) Yes, I took it up to the theater just to do a fast image check to make sure I wasn't going to ship it right back as crap (before I went to the trouble of putting that damn screen together). Don't get me recommending lower lumens. biggrin.gif
Thx. So, you'd recommend as a large flat panel replacement - even during bright daylight?
post #12 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nowknown View Post

Thx. So, you'd recommend as a large flat panel replacement - even during bright daylight?

Be careful, this is very situational. If you have direct sunlight pouring in through open windows flooding your floor or walls, your room is almost certainly too bright for any projection system. Although I have two French doors and two windows open to the exterior, it is a shaded exterior and my windows and doors are partially shaded, so although it is daylight, and it is easy to see in this room, it is not excessively bright.

This issue comes up a lot. Is there such a thing as an ambient light meter? Since I've been gone, has anybody posted average ambient light numbers and how many lumens projected on a particular size screen it takes overcome that ambient light acceptably?
post #13 of 26
Thread Starter 
It took a while, but I dug out my old Blu-ray version of the Digital Video Essentials. Now there's a blast from my past. I'm going to see what I can do with this project now. I'll probably make all the same mistakes I did 15 years ago.
post #14 of 26
Thread Starter 
It all comes back to me now. You go through all the instructions and all the test patterns and tweak to make it perfect, and then look at their video montage, and smile and smile, and then switch over to DirecTV and It blows. Dim whites, no shadow detail. Been there, done that. So I'm just about back to where I did it by eye now.

So here I am, I think: Color mode: Theater, Brightness: +2, Contrast: 7, Sharpness -5, Color Temp: 6500K, Color: +4, Tint: -1, Color Adjustment: green drive -5, red drive +2, Auto Iris: on, Noise Reduction: off.

This is all based on: Justified, The Blacklist, Castle, The Five, The Independents, Love and Death, Hidden, Sherlock, Elementary, Fawlty Towers, Oh Brother Where Art Thou, O'Reilly Factor, Downton Abbey, Intelligence, The Following, The Goldbergs and Sean Saves the World.

And now you have seen into my soul. biggrin.gif
post #15 of 26
Thread Starter 
Short anecdote for flavor: A good friend who doesn't get to my house all that often (a couple of times/year) came in yesterday morning and I had this PJ on. I asked him what he thought and made a point of walking back and forth in front of the screen (demonstrating no shadow). This is a guy who has his own theater room (which I helped him set up many years ago). He asked what size it was and I said 100". Then I told him what it was, pointed out the projector and explained the state of this particular small corner of the art and he said "I thought you had spent $40,000 on a flat screen!" He said because it was as vivid and colorful and bright as a flat screen. So, some of you slightly less than "golden eyes" would probably be pretty tickled with this approach.

The wife and I haven't been back up in the theater since the new install.
post #16 of 26

JHouse, thanks for an excellent review.  I'm a newb to pj systems, would like to ask you a few questions about the 485w.  But first some background:

Working for the USG, we move around the world every 2-3 years to a new country.  In the past, we have shipped several 50-60" tvs, but they are becoming a pain due to different electrical grids and possible damage during shipment....the word "fragile" has a huge spectrum of interpretation.  Plus, we want More Screen™! 

 

Due to the frequency of moves, and since every house layout is different (including the ability to control light), we think a short-throw system would be the easiest to install from both a pj setup and a cabling/audio setup as well. I don't have the skill/time to build a solution from scratch, so I'm considering just duplicating an existing successful setup (i.e. yours).  With lamps about $80, your solution seems to fit the bill. 

 

My questions:

1.  The specs indicate we can get a 100" display with a placement 22-23" from the wall...is this correct from your experience (your pictures seem to be evidence enough, but I'll ask anyway...)?

2.  There are several models of Elitescreen available on Amazon...given our circumstances, any recommendations on which type to get (Ciniwhite, PowerGain, AcoustiPro, etc)?

3.  As we'll be shipping the screen around as well, should we consider another make/model of screen?

4.  Alternately, we can paint the walls when we move in to our housing.  Other websites have found good results with a smooth enamel satin white paint that is used for trim/doors; this seems to work well for the projectors.  Your thoughts?

5.  At ~22" from the wall, it seems we should we get a 109" inch screen.  However, if we find ourselves in a situation where we can put the projector further away from the wall, would it make sense to get a bigger screen?

6.  Any thoughts on buying the 485 now compared to waiting for the upcoming Philips Screeneo or Sanyo products due later this year, or any other ultra short throw products or solutions we should consider (I think we can safely ignore the Sony 4k)?  All I could find was that the upcoming Philips and Sanyo products have lower lumens, and "better" connectivity.

7.  Would you recommend the 485wi (or purchasing the optional wireless module)?

8.  Any significant disads to the 485 from your experience (it looks like it has only up to 3000:1 contrast ratio)?

 

I apologize in advance for all the questions.


Edited by thornarm - 2/1/14 at 1:42pm
post #17 of 26
Thread Starter 
You are so lucky that I happen to be bored stiff right now. biggrin.gif

1. The specs indicate we can get a 100" display with a placement 22-23" from the wall...is this correct from your experience (your pictures seem to be evidence enough, but I'll ask anyway...)?
Answer: The very rear (farthest point from the wall) of the projector is a little less than 29" from the wall to fit my 100" screen.
2. There are several models of Elitescreen available on Amazon...given our circumstances, any recommendations on which type to get (Ciniwhite, PowerGain, AcoustiPro, etc)?
Answer: I think you don't want anything that fools with the light at all. No gain is what I'm using. Dead flat white. Plain. Cheap.
3. As we'll be shipping the screen around as well, should we consider another make/model of screen?
Answer: This screen is like putting a model car together. Lots of parts. Lots of time. You probably want to research one that is easier to assemble/disassemble of you are as nomadic as you seem to be.
4. Alternately, we can paint the walls when we move in to our housing. Other websites have found good results with a smooth enamel satin white paint that is used for trim/doors; this seems to work well for the projectors. Your thoughts?
Answer: Never had a white wall to try it all. However, dedicated screens really make for a smooth and uniform image that pops.
5. At ~22" from the wall, it seems we should we get a 109" inch screen. However, if we find ourselves in a situation where we can put the projector further away from the wall, would it make sense to get a bigger screen?
Answer: That depends on the amount of ambient light you are intending to try to overcome. Even 3100 lumens (knocked down for adjustments and such) can wash out in a light/white/bright room in the daytime. Do a lumen calculation for your screen size to see what you can get. If you can achieve 50+ lumens on your screen, you should be pretty safe. And there are always drapes and such.
6. Can I assume that we can streaming from multiple sources (laptops, bluray player, media servers, etc) via an A/V receiver and the HTML connection?
Answer: I got an HDMI switching soundbar from Sony. Here is that experience: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1512582/my-projector-has-only-1-hdmi-input-are-there-soundbars-that-will-take-the-feeds-from-3-sources-and-switch-between-them#post_24264303
7. Any thoughts on buying the 485 now compared to waiting for the upcoming Philips Screeneo or Sanyo products due later this year, or any other ultra short throw products or solutions we should consider (I think we can safely ignore the Sony 4k)? All I could find was that the upcoming Philips and Sanyo products have lower lumens, and "better" connectivity.
Answer: Don't know a thing about those.
8. Would you recommend the 485wi (or purchasing the optional wireless module)?
Answer: Didn't look into that, and so I don't know what it does.
9. Any significant disads to the 485 from your experience (it looks like it has only up to 3000:1 contrast ratio)?
Answer: I hardly ever notice a lack of shadow detail, but sometimes I do. But I live with it for all the other benefits.
post #18 of 26

I'm selfishly glad you're bored! :)

 

I noticed your other post on the Sony CT660 before you responded...I'll dig into the specs of that unit.  Thanks again for your assistance!

post #19 of 26
http://www.epson.com/cgi-bin/Store/jsp/Product.do?sku=V11H602020.
I am looking at the Epson Powerlite 585W coming out April 14..specs look even better with higher lumens 3300 and 2 HDMI inputs for $1199..thoughts?
post #20 of 26
Thread Starter 
Sounds great. Looks like they tripled the contrast ratio at 10K to 1, which is really great if it is real. Two HDMI will allow you to switch between your Satellite box and one of the new DVD players that wirelessly connect to your home wi-fi and incorporate the on-line content (Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu) so you can use ANY soundbar with two audio only inputs. You probably won't notice the 200 lumens, but it sure can't hurt (particularly with the contrast level). So the only thing left for them to fix is to go full 1080. I bet that will be next. smile.gif

BTW, still haven't been back up to the theater. eek.gif Starting to feel guilty, like I did about health club memberships. biggrin.gif Still not crazy about the sound bar (Sony CT660).mad.gif I'll probably get a 5.1 A/V Receiver and real speakers before too long. rolleyes.gif

Still looks frick'n great. cool.gif Becoming ever more sedentary. biggrin.gif
Edited by JHouse - 2/10/14 at 4:15am
post #21 of 26
Thanks for the reply..im new to the PJ scene and want to do an ultra short throw set..this sounds perfect to me. I am going to wait until April and get the 585W setup. This will be replacing my Mitsubishi 73" DLP.
post #22 of 26
Thread Starter 
No problem. Fixed a typo above. Anyway, I have been watching everything on it. And even the challenging material (dark/low contrast) doesn't catch my eye as sub par (though if I remember to wonder about it or dwell on it, I will notice. But that probably means that the state of the art has gotten "good enough" for regular folks. As a matter of fact, to normal people, it looks amazing. I'm kind of wondering if the next time I go upstairs and watch the Panny if I will say to myself "wow, I forgot what I was missing". It kind of reminds me of when stereos, and then TVs, finally got generally good enough that the differences weren't so huge that could could make a serious mistake that you really couldn't live with. Sure, you could tell differences, but you weren't really sure whether they were better or worse in most cases. If they triple the contrast ratio on this thing, it will be nearly perfect.
post #23 of 26
Thread Starter 
Had a revelation. Hadn't been up to the panny/bat cave for a long time, but was showing off the house to a new builder/neighbor and fired up the theater upstairs. Wow. Dim as hell. So I thought my bulb was going out. So I replaced it. Looked exactly the same. Conclusion, I have been ruined by the bright picture on the new short throw setup. Totally spoiled. I've been saying that brighter is better since the late 90's, and this reinforced it in a BIG way. I forced myself to stay upstairs for a while, and finally got used to it, and adjusted it to the point I didn't feel completely blind, but still yearned for more brightness. So when I tell you that this short throw set up looks like a 100 inch flat screen, believe it. I'll probably fall for a 1080 version when it shows up. I wish the manufactures would get on the stick with this new tech. All the resistence over the years of setting up the throw across the room and finding a mounting point, and running cables, yada yada, is GONE. They could sell these like skittles with any kind of decent ad campaign. I can't beleive they can't see that. Hell, they MAKE these things, so they know what they can do. A granny could put this theater together. Sheesh.
Edited by JHouse - 3/17/14 at 5:24pm
post #24 of 26
Thread Starter 
Small images of large images have never made much sense to me. As you can see, I posted pictures above to show the installation. Are you wanting to see more details as to the install layout/configuration?
post #25 of 26
Interesting concept. I'd need better resolution than wxga and better contrast than 3000:1. But coming from an AE4000 I can see how this may "do it" for you.
post #26 of 26
Thread Starter 
Slamming the Panny? Really?
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