I recently upgraded to an epson 5020ub and, given that I've benefitted greatly from the reviews and comments on the forum, I thought I'd contribute my two cents to anyone considering this projector. Background-wise I started off with old school 8" then 9" CRTs via Curt Palme and have been through a variety of DLPs, LCDsboth for home and work use. I'm not an expert, but I know what I like
. Viewing habits: Blu-ray via pc (20%), 3d blu-ray via playstation (10%) HD via Uverse (20%), PC gaming non 3d (20%), PC gaming 3d (10%), Movies/TV via appletv (20%).
I was deciding between the ae8000u and the epson; my leaning was initially towards the ae8000u due to gaming lag issues noted on these forums. However, customer service matters a great deal and Epson's longer standard warranty, lower price, and the fact that I received 4 glasses (dealer threw two extra pair in), won me over.
Gaming: I am not a hard core gamer, but enjoy the occassional on-line fray. I do not notice any lag. I'm sure some do, but they are a level of gaming way above my skillset. Frankly, I've neither the time nor desire to get beyond the casual gaming level. 3d gaming (Crysis 2 on xbox, Skyrim on pc) exceeds my expectations. The glasses are light, responsive, and hold a charge well. When gaming I'll pull a chair up and sit a few feet from my 117" wide screen (135" diagonal) in a completely light controlled theater, as I like the immersive feel of it. I never notice the "grid", and the experience is incredible. huge plus for me is the throw distance and lense shift....I have mounted it at a height where, even with a huge screen, four of us can stand within five feet of the screen and not block any of the picture. Makes kinect gaming (Dance Central 3, mainly) as a family an absolute blast.
Color: For me, it was darn near perfect out of the box. U-verse is always messy and requires different settings, but that's a matter of their signal and isn't the projector's issue. Anything played through my ps3, my pc, the xbox 360, or the appletv looks stunning. Quality wise, blu-ray via pc (powerdvd) looks the best, ps3 blu-ray next on the list, appletv 1080p is next and rivals my ps3, and u-verse 1080p drags up the rear. Hate whatever u-verse compression goes on...don't understand it well enough to give an informed critique, and oddly it varies drastically even between hd channels, but suffice to say not all 1080p is created equal....
Black levels: Amazing. Best I have ever experienced; including my memory of my CRTs of old (though I don't have a side by side comparison as I've removed the 200lb beasts from my ceiling long ago). Love the "alignment" menu of the epson as it brings back old memories of lining up CRT grid patterns with a hex wrench
...I know, not the same thing at all tech wise, but struck me as cool nonetheless.
Movies: It is rare that I watch a movie without at some point disregarding the plot and internally critiquing the picture...blotchiness in the colors, weird jittering in panning scenes, a corner not exaclty in focus on my old CRT etc. This is the first projector where I have honestly thoroughly enjoyed movies without being sucked into an image critique. The only issue I've had is with my home made screen and a small wrinkle in the top right corner
3d conversion: Ummm, not a fan. Doesn't compare to true 3D, and really, it can't. But I have yet to see any projector where this was anything but a novelty item (i.e wow, I can kind of see this in 3d, how cool, now lets take these things off and get back tot he movie), but nothing immersive about it. If you are buying this rather than a 3010 for the 3d conversion---don't. That piece isn't worth it. I think the lense shift, color, thx modes, etc are worth the upgrade.
Crispness: With clean source material it is the best picture i've seen...incredibly sharp, like looking through a window, even with a relatively large screen and shorter viewing distance.
3d movies: Better than the theater. Avatar was an entirely new experience. I was hesitant about how "into" 3D movies I would be, but at this stage I now look for 3d titles first when off to rent a blu-ray. Kids love it and it is an easy, hassle free viewing experience...