My two cents:
UPDATE FROM IFA 2018:
JVC had the JVC DLA-NX9 on demo only. As we all know, this is a preproduction unit, so this needs to be borne in mind.
We were not able to obtain answers to everyones questions, but we were unable to obtain the answers to some of them, which I will come onto in a second. Further to this JVC were reluctant to allow us to put on our own video content, but the good news is that we managed to persuade JVC to allow us to put one or two items of our own content on.
The dynamic contrast functionality was/is not working properly so the demos at IFA 2018 have been with it turned off and so the projected image relates to native ON/OFF contrast performance only, without any dynamic contrast functionality.
There was also noticeable posterization however I was assured that this will not be present with the production units.
Furthermore, the unit was uncalibrated and the settings not optimized.
Also, the focus had been set imperfectly, which became apparent when I put on some test patterns.
**HOWEVER** in spite of all of this, subjectively speaking my first impressions of the JVC DLA-NX9 are that the image projected looks very
good indeed; and I have no doubt whatsoever that with respect to the actual production units with proper launch firmware and with the projector setup properly and calibrated, this projector is going to look nothing short of absolutely incredible. In short, I have been absolutely blown away by its performance.
Also, as a point of interest, the manual mechanical iris was closed down to -3. The screen size was circa 3.5m wide and was using Stewart Filmscreen 1.3 gain screen material.
ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS AS PER FOLLOWS
(sorry if there is some repetition with respect to Ran's answers!):
● Native on/off for all models with the iris fully open? Even if only a rough idea compared to the specs, which presumably are for iris fully closed?
We were unable to take measurements and JVC were not agreeable to confirming this yet
● Autocal support confirmation, and for which meters?
Yes and the same meters (Spyder); however, the Autocal is reportedly improved
● Is the lens on the N5/N7 the same lens as on the current models?
NO the lens is similar but has been improved, according to JVC's main technical guy. Subjective opinion regarding the N5 and N7 are that they are better as compared with the existing eShift range as far as lens and optics performance is concerned.
● Is their new tone mapping based on static HDR metadata, or are they doing real-time processing to calculate each frame’s peak brightness to emulate HDR10+ (similar to what MadVR does [EDIT:apparently, the UB820 only processes HDR10 static metadata])
Yes it is indeed based on static HDR metadata, similar to how the new Panasonic UB820 and UB9000 Blu-Ray players operate.
Furthermore, a rather neat feature, it tells you what is the media’s static HDR metadata (Max CLL and Max FALL). See this photo that I took which shows this:
● ANSI contrast
According to JVC but not yet definitely confirmed via independent measurements the ANSI contrast performance is increased by circa 50%. Unsure at the present time whether this extends to both of the N5 and N7 further to the NX9.
● Does the dynamic iris close further than on the current models (i.e. any improvement to fade to black)?
No. It’s the same.
● There are “up to” 10 installation memories that hold lens memory, pixel correction, masking etc all together, which sounds great, but how many of these for each model
With respect to the NX9 it’s 10. Unsure at the present time whether this includes the N5 and N7 as well, but I expect that it does.
● Is the HDMI sync time improved compared to the current models
Yes. It’s been HALVED
● Can you confirm the +/- 100% V and +/- 47% H lens shift reported by some sources?
● What is the lumen loss with DCI P3 filter in place?
According to JVC “it is less”
JVC were unwilling or unable to divulge more details that the fact it is less. So someone will simply have to measure it, which I will be doing myself, as and when I receive delivery of my units
● Is there additional video noise when eShift is turned on
No. There is absolutely zero additional video noise when eShift is turned on.
● Bright corners
When asked the question whether or not there has been any development invested into improving the potential for bright corners, the response from the JVC guys was that no there has not been. **HOWEVER** I was not seeing any bright corners with respect to the NX9 unit being demonstrated; and this is a totally new optical block plus chipset, plus chassis etc. so it could very well be that the bright corners issue has indeed been improved. Either way, we won't know for sure until we have multiple data points with respect to the production units.
● Is the iris on the NX9 the same or new?
It is a completely new iris.
● How has JVC managed to increase the native ON/OFF contrast with native 4K so much?
JVC are understandably and as expected unwilling to say how they have done it; however, they have confirmed that it’s an entirely new optical block and chipset.
● Will JVC be releasing sometime next year a ‘big brother’ to the NX9 and/or replacement for the JVC RS4500/Z1 that’s essentially an NX9 with laser light source and higher peak lumens light output?
Would not confirm or deny.
● When will the production units for the projectors be available / ship ?
End of October.
● Impressions of lens performance and/or ability to resolve native 4K content at the pixel level
Despite all of the various pre-production related issues, and despite being 'out-of-the-box' uncalibrated, the NX9 completely aced both torture tests that I carried out. Firstly, it PERFECTLY resolved the Masciola single pixel native 4K test pattern off the HDR10 Test Pattern Suite, with perfect uniformity:
(N.B. I apologize for the quality of these photos - I was only able to take these using my phone not my 'proper' camera - there was in reality no moire in the projected image. That is a limitation of the photos
Secondly, it completed nailed the Quick Brown Fox test pattern, with perfect sharpness (aside from the projector having been set out of focus slightly) and perfect focus uniformity right across the whole image. The RGB convergence was also very good indeed all things considered; and the image was devoid of any and all streaking / ghosting / smearing, comprising an exceptionally clean and razor sharp image, even when viewed at extremely close proximity of less than 1 metre away, with superb contrast and dynamic range:
My conclusion from my first experience of the JVC DLA-NX9 is that JVC has hit a home run with this projector; and potentially with respect to the whole new projector range. Personally, I cannot wait to lay hands on the production units and carry out my evaluations and complete my in-depth review of the range, including comprehensive measurements, scientific analysis, and direct comparisons; which will be published shortly thereafter