I'm looking at getting our first projector and recent price cuts make the HC7900DW price-competitive with entry level projectors. But it wasn't marketed as an entry level projector. I've been lurking in the "under $3000" projector forum for the last several years, and now my 60" rear-projection TV is dying (YES!!).
The big question is if the HC7900Dw is suitable for my environment, or if I'd be better with something brighter like the Epson 2030 / Benq 1070W. Our viewing environment is a 17x24' basement/familyroom, normally kept pretty dim but not a batcave, i.e. “too dark to read but you could if you had to”. My wife and daughter normally have their laptops turned on, and there are a few ceiling lights on both sides of the room - normally dim (but not pitch dark) even during the day. Walls are dark brown non-reflective paneling. My plan is to build a grey diy screen and normally watch a 16:9 36"x64" (73" diagonal) image, but have the option on “movie nights" to remove side masks converting the screen to a 2.35 36"x84" and zoom out to fill the image, i.e. a poor man's constant image height environment. On movie nights the room could be kept very dark. Screen size is just a guess at this point, but the relative smallness hopefully allow for a bright image.
But I'm not exactly sure how paranoid I should be about the low ambient light we normally have. I know my wife likes some light in the room. I know 'home video' projectors such as the Epson 2030 or Benq 1070W would be fine, but I also suspect the HC7900DW is a better projector overall.
The advantage of the HC7900 to me is placement flexibility and potentially better build quality, but I could live with the restrictions of the Epson or the Benq, i.e. not enough zoom for what I want (nor lens shift.
It just could be that I need a 'home video' projector with the extra lumens more than the extra features of the Mitsubishi. But the Mitsubishi is awfully attractive.
I’d appreciate your thoughts and advice.