Received the Sony HW40es this morning. Just finished watching X-MEN Days of Future Past with it. Here are my thoughts:
Color accuracy out of the box is astonishingly good for this price point. Picture quality with Reality Creation on is amazing. Picture quality definitely suffers when Reality Creation is turned off. I just can't get over how good the details are in the picture now.
I see texture in clothing, skin, etc that I've never seen before on my other projectors and even my TVs for that matter. The brightness was a real shocker for me. It definitely appears brighter than my Benq HT-1075.
The color brightness seems as good as the Benq HC-1200 and the Epson HC-3500 but with less white brightness. I heard so much about how this unit will not look much better than a Benq W1070 due to my "terrible" room having white walls, reflection, and with some ambient light coming from my floor lamp.
I found this to be outright bullfeces. The Sony looks much, much better than any of the Benq models I owned with this movie. Especially the Benq HT-1075 whose colors appear downright dull in comparison to the Sony. Benq HT-1075's picture overall was dimmer than the Sony to my eyes.
Perceived contrast also seems much better in my eyes with the lights on and definitely with the lights off. The Sony's picture is so natural, smooth, and sharp.
It is very balanced with no major flaws that stick out to me. With that being said, the fan on high is definitely audible and not whisper quiet as many have described.
I love the look of Cinema Film 1 setting for movies. For TV shows and sports I'm using game mode on low lamp setting. I was definitely shocked by how bright the game mode setting was. Had to tame it a bit by going with low lamp instead of high lamp setting. The Sony HW40es paired with the contrast and ALR ability of the 1.4 gain of the Black Diamond screen is a match made in heaven in my eyes.
I really hope this thread will help some potential buyers. I'm the type of guy that likes to get out and compare products first hand before I give an opinion. If I went by the prevailing opinion in this forum, I would have simply gotten a entry level Benq and nothing else due to my room being less than HT friendly. Many of the people pushing this opinion have not seen any of the latest offerings in a typical living room, yet they are dissuading potential buyers based on specs alone.
I believe this is disingenuous and could be robbing consumers of a superior home entertainment experience. I know I would be missing out big time had I stuck with the Benq and never tried any other projectors in my room.
I also want to add the Epson HC-3500's picture quality is fairly close to what I'm seeing with the Sony, albeit with lower Black levels. But using the Epson HC-3500 with a darker screen like the Black Diamond helped it's black levels tremendously in my opinion.
Last edited by Swolephile; 09-25-2015 at 11:28 AM.