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Atlanta Area Shootout???? - Page 3  

post #61 of 99

We are getting together tomorrow at about 2:00 PM. If you're bringing projectors, feel free to be a little bit early so we can figure out how to get everyone hooked up.

My phone number is 770 815 9335. Call for directions. If you don't get me, leave a message and a phone number and I'll call you back.
post #62 of 99
Az, I will not being bringing a projectors as both of mine are each over 100-pounds.
post #63 of 99
Originally posted by WanMan
Az, I will not being bringing a projectors as both of mine are each over 100-pounds.
Well, if you're such a girly-man that lifting only 200 lbs would be too much for you...:D

No problem, feel free to drop by anyway. It's very informal, and so far only three people have called for directions, so it will be a small getogether.

And then later we can go to your place to see how well those giant projecters, well, project!
post #64 of 99
Please PM me the directions, or email me via the local forum. Otherwise, I'll call in the morning.
post #65 of 99
I'm still coming with a Panasonic AE300. I have a family get-together in the morning, so I'll call for directions shortly before I head your way.

post #66 of 99
Az - let me know what kind of screen that is you have.

I liked it.
post #67 of 99
Sorry, guys, Honey Do list slap me like a cheap whore.
post #68 of 99

It's a Dalite model C. $1100 at a local Home Theatre store, $350 from one of the illustrious AVS sponsors.


It's a good thing you didn't come. Things got way out of hand... a couple guys went streaking, someone else was sitting on the front porch with a bottle of scotch and a pistol taking pot shots at high flying airliners and low flying cars, luckily by the time the cops showed up me and the hookers had already gone.


I'm waiting to see if anyone has the guts to post the results of the test.
post #69 of 99
you or someone better - i'm sitting here waiting with anticipation :D
post #70 of 99
I'll be the first to admit when I've seen a better projector than the one I personally owned. Its suppose to be a learning experience, not a competition. We're humans, we make mistakes, and those feeling worse after the meet because their projector wasn't up to the task have the opportunity to sell and buy again.

Curious, for the comparisons was the same source and transport used?
post #71 of 99
Az - what about the surface material?

Matte White
High contrast Matte White
High Contrast Cinema Vision, etc.?
post #72 of 99
Matte white.
post #73 of 99
We used the same source for HiDef viewing and the same source material for DVD comparison (but running from different DVD players).

It was in no way a super controlled videophile comparison. There were a lot of variable that we either didn't choose to control or couldn't. We were looking mainly for stark differences between the projectors that were noticeable under the conditions we had. I think mainly to decide what the extra $$ given from say an X1 to a Panasonic gets you.

Environment - Az's basement with moderate to low sunlight getting around his curtains lighting up the left side of the screen.

Stuff we didn't control - color - we had colors all over the place. Filters on, filters off, not calibrated ... etc. This made it hard to compare the projectors. Like at the electronics store - the display with the most jacked up color or brightest light output was hard to ignore.

I was stunned at how good the X1 looked. For the money, the thing is a steal. If I ever want another TV for video games or playing movies in front of my treadmill I'm going to be looking it the X1s direction.

My impressions were this...
Rainbows... headaches ... nausea? All that scary stuff about DLPs - I didn't see anything like that. I've got better than 20/20 vision uncorrected and viewing the X1 and Az's little HP (what model is that Az?) gave me no problems.

If I (rather spasticly) turned my head from side to side I could see some rainbow effect - the same for when I waved my fingers in front of my face, but I had to be looking for it. It was still hard to see and not near the distraction that I (having not ever seen the X1 before) was led to believe.

On DVDs the X1 looked great. I could see a little more screen door than I could on the two LCDs in attendance (Panny 300 and an HS10). The lower resolution was not that noticeable on DVDs - especially if you kept the screen smaller. On 16:9 material and larger screen sizes though - you can tell. Remember - this is with me straining to pick nits. Your friends would never know the difference. The question I guess is whether it is worth it to you. This hobby is all about being anal though.

On HiDef material is where the higher resolution projectors shined. The panny and HS-10 produced noticeably cleaner images. The X1 didn't look bad, it just didn't look as good as the Panny and the Sony. It sort of had an aliased look to it - lines had jagged edges like in video games. I feel like I need to keep saying this for some reason, but again ... I'm picking nits. This wasn't a VW vs. Ferrari comparison. It was more like comparing a Corvette and a 350Z. If the issue was whether to sit on the fence and wait a year for something else to come out or buy an X1. I would go for the X1.

I had a harder time deciding between the Panny and the HS10. The panny was the other projector that I strongly considered when I bought my HS-10. I would have been happy with it. With the variations we had with color, brightness, size, etc. It was very hard to pick a winner. We were showing half screens of the same movie (we synched up the DVD players and covered opposite halves of the projector lenses.) On DVD's forget it - there isn't an appreciable difference. I don't want to compare black levels, etc. because of the varations mentioned above. On Hi-def I would give a slight nod to the HS-10, but only slight and that may have been my psyche trying to validate my decision to go with the HS-10.

The X1, HP, and Panny all had these niftly little carry cases. The projectors were small and were easily transported. Contrast this to my lugging in the original box for my HS-10, which is about the size of a stack of 6 xtra large pizzas.

OTOH - I liked the fact that I could adjust my lens focus and zoom from the remote.

Additionally, after I had fired up the HS-10 turned it off and then back on - the lamp didn't fire up. Instead, the orange lamp cover light blinked and the fan ran. This has only happened to me in the past when I fired the projector back up while it was still warm from a previous session. I've never had it turn off during operation. A quick unplugging and turning it back on fixed that, but I plan on having the thing plugged in in the attic so that may suck. If it happens I guess I'll just go in the basement and flip the breaker.

In the end ... it is what you want to pay. There were 4 projectors - two the same price, two priced progressively higher. You do get a little more for your money, but there is definitely a damper on the value you get as you shovel in the cash. For me I hit it right at the point I was looking for. The point on the curve of diminishing returns where I'm satisfied that I couldn't tell enough of a difference to justify the extra $$ to upgrade to say a Sanyo PLV-70.

The test showed me that (as expected) I like resolution - the more the better. I got as much as I could in a budget projector. Black levels and contrast ... yeah I can tell. The differences we are talking about here, however, are not horrendous. If I don't have the projectors sitting side by side I'll forget about it. My eyes adjust and I'll enjoy the material. I'll trade black levels for extra resolution. I'm waiting for that $2500 1920x1080 LCD or DLP or whatever they think of next. Until then (or so long as it keeps humming) I'm happy with my HS-10, would have been happy with the Panny, and if I were doing mainly movie watching, would be all about that little X1.
post #74 of 99
Which is the units had the higher pixel resolution? Would the owner like to come over to my place one weekend to compare it to something else?
post #75 of 99
Excellent summation, PerryH.

If those who didn't make it want to know who the winner of the shootout was, the answer is me (sorta).

I haven't yet purchased, and was able to do a fairly thorough, though admittedly unscientific, comparisons of the predecessors of the two projectors I am considering.

I will add a few things to Perry's comments.
On the issue of screenWidth/viewingDistance ratio, I would say the issue is somewhat overemphasized. On a 9' wide screen, I spent an hour or so of the comparison sitting about 8'-10' away, and noticed screen door only VERY occasionally. I had been concerned about how large of a screen to buy and how much of my theater would actually be usable. I am no longer concerned. In fairness, at 14'+, I could see NO SDE. If my eyesight's bad, just think of all the money it's saving me :D ;)

On the X1 - That projector is a steal. I will probably still go for a higher rez projector (because "ours goes to 11") but was very surprised at the quality of image the X1 provides.

Rainbows - I had previously experienced an unacceptable level of rainbows when viewing an NEC260 with DVD over Svideo. I didn't see any rainbows from the X1 that didn't involve the "wiggle your hand in front of your face" ritual. As I rarely meet folks who watch movies this way, it would not be a limiting factor.

Panny 300 vs. HS10 - Hard to say. I'm shopping HS20 vs. Panny 500, so I have a lot of other posts to read to make the choice.

Thanks again to everyone that brought their projectors out. Special thanks to Az for having us in your home. Perhaps I can make the 20 available for viewing in a couple of months in Newnan.

post #76 of 99
Darn, a day late and a dollar short. I am just entering the HT hobby but it is biting me hard. I am moving into a house in Dec and I have a room in the basement all set for a home theater room. Any suggestions? What cables should I run, any special insulation for sound or any other suggestions?

I am moving to Duluth. Where should I be looking at hardware?


BTW- Does anyone know of any local contractors to assist in basement finishing?
post #77 of 99
How did I miss this too? I'm in Kennesaw and have been looking at the Z1. I think I will wait for the Z2 however considering it will be here soon. I've actually found a etailer that said they 'may' have them in stock already http://avpres.org. I'm hoping to find a good "Black Friday" or Christmas sale.

Eric, I was told by the HiFi Buys sales guy they would give free advice on finishing a basement for HT.
post #78 of 99
Boy, you guys sure are polite. I mean, not one of you has mentioned how completely crappy my projector looked. I feel the love!

At any rate, after everyone left, it took about 30 seconds to find the cable that was loose... it was the red cable going to the projector. I obviously knocked it loose when I was hooking up the component out from the HDTV box to the projectors. At least it was easy to fix.

And after running the AVIA disc, it was painfully obvious that I had knocked the focus out of adjustment, probably Sunday morning when I was cleaning the lens.

Ok, enough excuses. I was impressed by both the Panny and the HS. Each had it's own stengths, and I think I would be happy with either. Personally, I liked the picture on the HS slightly better. But as has been mentioned, it was only noticeable on a side by side comparison. If you went from house to house, or even room to room to view these projectors, I'm sure you'd be blown away by the picture on either one, and hard pressed to find any difference.

The X1 and my HP were pretty much in the same league. At least once I hooked everything on mine up. Not a huge difference from the other projectors, but the increased resolution is noticeable if you're noticing.

It was great meeting you guys, and if you're ever in the area feel free to drop by. I still have a lot of cold adult beverages left over, and I shudder to think that I will have to drink them all by myself!
post #79 of 99
Thread Starter 
My 2 Cents (X1 contributor)

First of all, thanks to AZ and his lovely family for hosting this event....and thanks to my wife and AZ's for sitting back and letting us geeks blather on.

Setting - AZ has a great theater setup w/ a HUGE screen. We did have some sunlight creeping in, but it wasn't a show-stopper by any means.

None of the four PJs appeared to be perfectly calibrated. So we did have some color issues. Since my X1 is so new, I haven't actually adjusted any of the PQ setting since purchase. Like Perry said, this wasn't a precise videophile shootout. It was more to do raw subjective comparison.


Screen Size - The Sony excelled on this front. The HS10's ability to adjust focus and zoom via the remote was envious, as well as it's very wide range of zoom. The Panny seemed to handle the large screen just fine as long as it's moved to the appropriate distance. As is stated all over the forums and the reviews, screendoor is really not an issue for the Panny. The X1 could display a clear picture on the large screen. However, screendoor does come into play at that size. It's not too bad, but it's there if you really look for it. I presently display on a smaller screen than AZ's without any screendoor whatsoever. 9' is just too much for the SVGA res.

DVD - IMO, I felt that all three PJs projected similar images when playing DVDs, each with it's pros and cons. The Sony had the richest colors when playing Monster's Inc. The X1 seemed to handle the blacks best (viewing LOTR). Beyond the blacks, the Panny and X1 seemed to display LOTR equally well when the Panny was placed in Cinema mode. The Sony obviously looked great, but it didn't seem to be capturing that grayed out LOTR look, most definitely because of simple configuration. In the end, all three looked great displaying DVDs.

HD (comcast) - Here, the Sony harnesses it's high resolution and leaps to the front of the pack. The justification for the extra cost really shines through when displaying HD. The same is true for the Panny, which also looked stunning. However, it still falls second to the Sony's ample resolution. Taking up the rear of the pack was my X1 :( . The proud part of me wants to point out that anyone walking in off the street will still be in utter awe at the PQ when displaying HD on the X1. But, the honest home theater enthusiast in me will admit that it can't keep up with the 1/4 HD Panny and the high res Sony. My only regret is that I didn't move the X1 closer to see how it displayed the HD at a bit smaller screen size. Oh well.

Final Thoughts:

In the end, this has just confirmed that it all comes down to how much you want to spend and what your source will be the majority of the time. If budget is a big driver and DVD is your primary source, then the X1 gives you the biggest bang for the buck. If HD plays a larger role in your plans and you can stretch the budget a bit, then the Panny is a great fit. If you can handle the hit to the budget and plan on watching a lot of HD, then the Sony is the obvious choice with it's massive resolution.

Thanks to everyone that participated. I think that we all walked away with a new appreciation for our own PJs and a new respect for the others. To those on the fence, you can't go wrong with any of these PJs. It really all comes down to you just really thinking hard about where on the Budget versus resolution spectrum your sweet-spot resides.
post #80 of 99
Thread Starter 
Boy, you guys sure are polite. I mean, not one of you has mentioned how completely crappy my projector looked. I feel the love!

We just thought you really like your picture REALLY green. :D
Glad you figured out what was wrong.

I still have a lot of cold adult beverages left over, and I shudder to think that I will have to drink them all by myself!

I feel your pain.....I hate it when I have to drink a bunch of beer. :D
post #81 of 99
I didn't know you had bought beer just for us. I would have been glad to help out.
post #82 of 99
Guys. what was the screen size?
post #83 of 99
Variable depending on the instance.

When we filled the screen it was something like 9-9.5 feet (horizontal dimension). Az can give a more precise measurement.
post #84 of 99
My $0.02 (AE300 contributor):

We spent a bunch of time trying to do split-picture comparisons of the projectors to see if one stood out as significantly better. It was a draw with DVD input. There were slight differences in color rendition, but it was hard to say which was more accurate. All the projectors have enough controls to tweak color to your liking.

There was a bit of light leakage, and we didn't try to compare absolute black levels. It wasn't easy to any difference in contrast. The X1 should be tweakable to show higher contrast, but it wasn't obvious with our setup, due to light leakage. All of the projectors were bright enough to display a good picture on a 9 foot wide screen. I think the HS10 was brightest, but the eye adjusts quickly and it becomes difficult to judge.

I was really impressed with the picture from the X1. Rainbows and eye strain are definitely not an issue. If I had seen the X1 before buying the AE300, I probably would have bought it instead. (I watch primarily SDTV and DVDs, so the lower resolution isn't an issue.) The X1 looked good with HDTV, with the only limitation being the lower resolution.

FYI - When I first set up my AE300, I had pretty severe eyestrain. This had nothing to do with the projector; I was just trying too hard to see potential flaws in the picture. After I relaxed and just enjoyed the picture, the eye strain went away.

The HS10 looked outstanding with HDTV. The extra resolution brought out more detail in the image. It was almost like looking through a window.

I can't remember if we had a chance to see the HP in action before the cable came loose. I seem to recall it doing well with HDTV, other than the lower resolution.

Screen door wasn't an issue with any of the projectors. I could see the pixels on the AE300 and X1, but there weren't any noticeable black lines between them. The HS10 may have had screen door, but you'd have to get closer to the screen than I was to see it. It's one of the benefits of being nearsighted :-).

Many thanks to Az for hosting the get-together, and to the other guys who brought projectors. If we had done this before I bought my projector, I might have made a different purchase.

post #85 of 99
Mike, are you doing anything the weekend after next? I wouldn't mind comparing your LCD to my 6PG. We could top/bottom or left/right split and take some real non-scientific pics for the people and try to do so based on what out pair of eyes are seeing.
post #86 of 99
I didnt read the whole 5 pages of this thread since i live in Minnesota, so i dont know if someone has mentioned this yet or not.

I hope you guys go through with this, and plan on taking plenty of screenshots for the people here at AVS. :) THis would be a great opportunity to shoot 2 or 4 PJs on different areas of the same screen at the same time to compare PQ.

post #87 of 99
Well, I have previously said that if I have to I'll buy the X1 (again) for the event, and then return it (again) therafter. It would be nice, though, for a second pair of eyes to see what is happening.

Keep in mind that my projection screen is only a 80x40 M1300 Draper.
post #88 of 99
As far as screenshots go we didn't take any.

I promise they would have been worthless.

I could have made you like any of the four projectors we had by manipulating the settings on each projector. The one I made the brightest of the pair on the screen at the same time would have been the one that everybody would think is superior.

The only thing I can think of that would have been a valid use of a digital camera would have been to set one up a foot or so from the screen on a tripod and take a picture of the screen door effect. That really isn't necessary though. You can get a pretty good idea of what that would have looked like with some math.

Divide the square footage of the screen by the number of pixels the projector has and voila. The space between the pixels will be a tad bigger with the LCDs (I guess) but I didn't notice that when we had the projectors together.

Really .... after this get together I see little value in a screen shot for comparing projectors. There is a little more value in them for comparing screens, but only if the photographer is careful and this is still nothing like being there.
post #89 of 99
Sounds like the results were pretty much as expected, dimminishing returns but definite improvement as you go up in price. I wish you would have compared on an 80" screen (or at least only 100".) Based on projectorcentral.com reviews anything more is degrading what an X1 and L300 can do. I am surprised the X1 could look good even for DVD at 9ft wide, I would think even 7 ft wide would be pushing it.
post #90 of 99
I thought it looked fine, but it is all based on perspective.

Good and fine are relative terms. ;)
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