BenQ HT3550 True 4K Home Cinema Projector Review - Page 6 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #151 of 526 Old 03-11-2019, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by dbpaddler View Post
Appreciate the info (really do), but I think you overlooked the reason why we're looking at the 3550. It's the short throw. It also throws your other mentions out the window. We're constrained by our room dimensions. There is no JVC or Sony that will give us a 120" pic at a sub 11' throw.

My room is 12x12 and my JVC pushes up against my blinds. Even taking the blinds out and pushing the jvc back to the window gets me to 106" maybe. Playing around with mirrors and wide angle lenses is an option, and I'm still going to look into it. But buying an eshift JVC still isn't going to make my room any bigger. Makes no sense for me to drop over $3k and stick to my 100" screen.

So I know I'll be making a sacrifice in black levels, but I'll gain greater immersion and color. Is it a trade off I'll be happy with? I won't know until I spend a weekend watching movies. For now I picked up my 120" screen, and will hopefully set it up this weekend and start tinkering with the JVC.

And I thought the 5040 did blacks better than the Sony 45ES. I'd like to see how the 3550 fairs against the 5040. With the 5040 I'd entertain a scope screen with its motorized everything and presets. But again, still hampered by room size.

Also a reason why I was looking at the 2050a. Can pick one up for $525 and get an idea of image quality. Assuming that's the 1080 equivalent of the 3550.

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I'm in a similar boat myself. Have even debated if the $1,500ish for the 3550 would be better spent on a used JVC but I need to throw a 100" image from 8.5 feet away and no other projector will cut it. From what I've read, it's nearly impossible or extremely difficult to use a wide angle lens or mirror to reduce throw without introducing unwanted artifacts which would be such a waste on a high end projector.

I think some frustration comes from the fact that we've seen TVs advance so much further than projectors in the last few years (at least in the sub $2k market). My cheap TCL has much better blacks than my W1070 and the 1080p set I had 5 years ago. In the DLP market with the .47 chip, I think we took one step forward and two steps back, increasing resolution but reducing native contrast. Honestly, since I bought the W1070 5 years ago and not reading much about developments in projector technology, I'm disappointed to see contrast is still such a major flaw at this price point (at least for DLPs). I'm not necessarily convinced I'm better off with mediocre contrast and better colors/resolution. I'm pretty happy with the resolution and color that 1080p currently provides but having never seen 4k on a home projector I'm not sure what I'm missing anyway. I do know that my black levels are disappointing and watching dark scenes is incredibly distracting due to the poor image quality. Spending $1,500 and not improving that aspect is a tough decision for me.

However, from what I've read it sounds like BenQ is doing the very best it can with the .47 chip by introducing the dynamic iris so I really can't expect much more. I think the frustration is geared more towards the industry. Projectors are still behind TVs at this price point and will probably continue to be making it harder for projector manufacturers to offer enough value for the investment asked.
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post #152 of 526 Old 03-11-2019, 07:19 PM
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How would this compare to my Acer H7850 I bought at the start of February?

I don’t know if the contrasts are a 1:1 comparison?

Would this projector be darker than my projector
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post #153 of 526 Old 03-11-2019, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by wk11793 View Post
I'm in a similar boat myself. Have even debated if the $1,500ish for the 3550 would be better spent on a used JVC but I need to throw a 100" image from 8.5 feet away and no other projector will cut it. From what I've read, it's nearly impossible or extremely difficult to use a wide angle lens or mirror to reduce throw without introducing unwanted artifacts which would be such a waste on a high end projector.



I think some frustration comes from the fact that we've seen TVs advance so much further than projectors in the last few years (at least in the sub $2k market). My cheap TCL has much better blacks than my W1070 and the 1080p set I had 5 years ago. In the DLP market with the .47 chip, I think we took one step forward and two steps back, increasing resolution but reducing native contrast. Honestly, since I bought the W1070 5 years ago and not reading much about developments in projector technology, I'm disappointed to see contrast is still such a major flaw at this price point (at least for DLPs). I'm not necessarily convinced I'm better off with mediocre contrast and better colors/resolution. I'm pretty happy with the resolution and color that 1080p currently provides but having never seen 4k on a home projector I'm not sure what I'm missing anyway. I do know that my black levels are disappointing and watching dark scenes is incredibly distracting due to the poor image quality. Spending $1,500 and not improving that aspect is a tough decision for me.



However, from what I've read it sounds like BenQ is doing the very best it can with the .47 chip by introducing the dynamic iris so I really can't expect much more. I think the frustration is geared more towards the industry. Projectors are still behind TVs at this price point and will probably continue to be making it harder for projector manufacturers to offer enough value for the investment asked.
I think it's safe to say you will notice better black levels with the 3550. It does suck that none of the better pj's have a shorter throw.

I'm contemplating selling my JVC now, go with the 2050A on the cheap for a year or so, and see what shakes out in the market. I do love my JVC, but I don't think it's worth tinkering with to try and get a good pic out of it. If I flip it around and reflect, it just craps up the area right above the sofa. And I have to rig the mirror just so to boot with no guarantee it'll be a perfect pic. If I try the WA lens option I have to rig a mount in front of the lens, and again, be perfect and hope it doesn't downgrade the image.

The theater room is one of the few fairly finished rooms in the house (until I move everything into the closet and run new wire.) and the nightly refuge. Don't want to waste a ton of time fooling with it when I've got open walls, wiring new drywall to put up and so on. Don't need yet another project.


And not really sure pj's are lagging behind TV's. I read a lot of reviews about how artifical HDR looks on TV's,and how much more natural it looks on projectors. And for the cost of an 85" tv, you can get the 3550 and a 120" screen. If consumers can't see the value there, God help them. And with UST's becoming more popular, there's even less fuss of a projector though you're paying more for the screen than you would with a normal pj.

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post #154 of 526 Old 03-11-2019, 08:17 PM
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I currently have an Epson 6500UB and was considering the 4010 ($1799) or the 5040UB ($1999 w/extra bulb). But the HT3550 looks interesting. I have my theater in an unfinished (as of right now) basement that could have very little to no ambient light. I currently have a 100" DIY screen but I am looking at the 110" or 120" Silver Ticket screen. Currently the projector is on a shelf behind the seats which are about 11' from the screen. I do have flexibility in where I place/mount the projector.

I will be primarily watching blu-ray/4k blu-ray, streaming Amazon prime and watching sports. Some interest in 3D but will not be doing any gaming. When watching sports I would probably have some ambient lighting. Thoughts on the HT3550 vs. the Epsons?

Thanks!
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post #155 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 05:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbpaddler View Post
I think it's safe to say you will notice better black levels with the 3550. It does suck that none of the better pj's have a shorter throw.

I'm contemplating selling my JVC now, go with the 2050A on the cheap for a year or so, and see what shakes out in the market. I do love my JVC, but I don't think it's worth tinkering with to try and get a good pic out of it. If I flip it around and reflect, it just craps up the area right above the sofa. And I have to rig the mirror just so to boot with no guarantee it'll be a perfect pic. If I try the WA lens option I have to rig a mount in front of the lens, and again, be perfect and hope it doesn't downgrade the image.

The theater room is one of the few fairly finished rooms in the house (until I move everything into the closet and run new wire.) and the nightly refuge. Don't want to waste a ton of time fooling with it when I've got open walls, wiring new drywall to put up and so on. Don't need yet another project.


And not really sure pj's are lagging behind TV's. I read a lot of reviews about how artifical HDR looks on TV's,and how much more natural it looks on projectors. And for the cost of an 85" tv, you can get the 3550 and a 120" screen. If consumers can't see the value there, God help them. And with UST's becoming more popular, there's even less fuss of a projector though you're paying more for the screen than you would with a normal pj.

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I'm pretty sure the right thing to do here is to get the 3550 ASAP and report back to us on whether it's the right switch from JVC

I'm not going to fool around with mirrors or lenses... For me, it's either a 3550 @ 135" or stick with the JVC @ 106"
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post #156 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 05:59 AM
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Originally Posted by YumMasterYum View Post
I'm pretty sure the right thing to do here is to get the 3550 ASAP and report back to us on whether it's the right switch from JVC



I'm not going to fool around with mirrors or lenses... For me, it's either a 3550 @ 135" or stick with the JVC @ 106"
I'll set up a gofundme account for the 3550 so we can make it happen.

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post #157 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by wk11793 View Post
I'm in a similar boat myself. Have even debated if the $1,500ish for the 3550 would be better spent on a used JVC but I need to throw a 100" image from 8.5 feet away and no other projector will cut it. From what I've read, it's nearly impossible or extremely difficult to use a wide angle lens or mirror to reduce throw without introducing unwanted artifacts which would be such a waste on a high end projector.

I think some frustration comes from the fact that we've seen TVs advance so much further than projectors in the last few years (at least in the sub $2k market). My cheap TCL has much better blacks than my W1070 and the 1080p set I had 5 years ago. In the DLP market with the .47 chip, I think we took one step forward and two steps back, increasing resolution but reducing native contrast. Honestly, since I bought the W1070 5 years ago and not reading much about developments in projector technology, I'm disappointed to see contrast is still such a major flaw at this price point (at least for DLPs). I'm not necessarily convinced I'm better off with mediocre contrast and better colors/resolution. I'm pretty happy with the resolution and color that 1080p currently provides but having never seen 4k on a home projector I'm not sure what I'm missing anyway. I do know that my black levels are disappointing and watching dark scenes is incredibly distracting due to the poor image quality. Spending $1,500 and not improving that aspect is a tough decision for me.

However, from what I've read it sounds like BenQ is doing the very best it can with the .47 chip by introducing the dynamic iris so I really can't expect much more. I think the frustration is geared more towards the industry. Projectors are still behind TVs at this price point and will probably continue to be making it harder for projector manufacturers to offer enough value for the investment asked.
Unless you have a fairly well blacked out room the light (reflected on walls/from other sources) will significantly affect the contrast/black levels. I'm not sure how a better projector, like a JVC will fare, but a lot of it's contrast capabilities will be lost. The HT3550/W2700 is probably the best 4K projector right now under living room environment (for mostly lights out viewing).

If motorized zoom and greater lens shift are needed, the the Epson 4010/TW 7400 would be the choice, but that's $500 more. The minimum throw range on the Epson is x1.35 vs the x1.13 on the Benq.

More info here:https://projectiondream.com/en/contr...r-environment/
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post #158 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 08:00 AM
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Unless you have a fairly well blacked out room the light (reflected on walls/from other sources) will significantly affect the contrast/black levels. I'm not sure how a better projector, like a JVC will fare, but a lot of it's contrast capabilities will be lost. The HT3550/W2700 is probably the best 4K projector right now under living room environment (for mostly lights out viewing).

If motorized zoom and greater lens shift are needed, the the Epson 4010/TW 7400 would be the choice, but that's $500 more. The minimum throw range on the Epson is x1.35 vs the x1.13 on the Benq.

More info here:https://projectiondream.com/en/contr...r-environment/
I know. My walls are darker tan color. Front wall is a brick red. My ceiling is still white. Havent caved to painting it yet. The Epson isn't an option. No real difference from the JVC in regards to throw. BenQ seems to be the only company that cares about a shorter throw pj.

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post #159 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 08:01 AM
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… And I thought the 5040 did blacks better than the Sony 45ES. ...
According to all the independent reviews I've read that included instrumented measurements the HW45ES has slightly better native black levels and contrast than the 5040UB. But since the 5040UB has a dynamic iris and the HW45ES does not, the 5040UB has superior dynamic black levels and contrast.
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This projector sounds amazing and ticks all the boxes for me except the biggest box which is gaming. I was super sad to see that it has higher input lag than it's predecessor. Any chance you think this may improve with firmware updates or in the final model?
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post #161 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 08:26 AM - Thread Starter
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BenQ HT3550 True 4K Home Cinema Projector Review

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This projector sounds amazing and ticks all the boxes for me except the biggest box which is gaming. I was super sad to see that it has higher input lag than it's predecessor. Any chance you think this may improve with firmware updates or in the final model?


I don’t. I mean, I suppose it might be possible. After all, benq reduced the input lag on the HT3050 from around 50ms to 33ms some months after it’s introduction with a firmware update. But I don’t expect anything like that to happen here. If you look, all DLPs with MEMC have higher lag than those without— even when the feature is off. Just look at the Optoma UHD50 compared to the 51a or the UHD60 compared to the UHD65. Virtually identical models but the one with MEMC has higher lag.
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post #162 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 08:39 AM
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According to all the independent reviews I've read that included instrumented measurements the HW45ES has slightly better native black levels and contrast than the 5040UB. But since the 5040UB has a dynamic iris and the HW45ES does not, the 5040UB has superior dynamic black levels and contrast.
Apparently the 45ES has better detail in blacks, according to this post:
https://www.avsforum.com/forum/68-di...l#post55451820

The 65ES has a dynamic iris, so that might help against the Epson. But it's just 1080p.
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Hey everyone, I have updated my review. Not much has changed. I updated the video processing section and updated the viewing experience with notes about how the iris works with the new firmware. My next post is the the HT3550 / HT2050A comparison I promised. I’m sorry it isn’t up already I’ve been extremely ill for the last week and am moving slow.

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post #164 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 09:08 AM
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Hey everyone, I have updated my review. ...
For those who've already read your review it's a little redundant to have to go back and re-read the whole long review word for word to find any changes you may have made. Is the part in italics near the end about the dynamic iris the only change/addition to the original review?
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I have the W1070 and was waiting for this to replace W1070. I thought it wasnt coming soon enough so I decided to move everything back and get a larger screen 125 inch. I was close to buying the UHD51A until I realized this one was announced. Has someone done a comparison the UHD51 vs the H3550?

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I'd definitely wait and look at this projector, and I have a UHD51A. I replaced a Benq 1085. We are really enjoying the UHD51A over our old projector, but there are issues you have to take into account including black levels and mitigating the border light due to the pond. My HT setup makes the border light a non-issue, but that is definitely not the norm.

My opinion only, but if I were looking right now I'd definitely hold out to see what this Benq can do, it looks promising at this price point.

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For those who've already read your review it's a little redundant to have to go back and re-read the whole long review word for word to find any changes you may have made. Is the part in italics near the end about the dynamic iris the only change/addition to the original review?


That and the video processing. Sorry I thought I mentioned that.

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That and the video processing. Sorry I thought I mentioned that.
You did mention the changes in fairly general terms. For those who want to make sure they don't miss anything but don't want to re-read the whole review it would be helpful if all the changes immediately stood out when just glancing at the review. For example some have used boldfaced red text when updating a long review with new observations.
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Originally Posted by Deucedriver View Post
I'd definitely wait and look at this projector, and I have a UHD51A. I replaced a Benq 1085. We are really enjoying the UHD51A over our old projector, but there are issues you have to take into account including black levels and mitigating the border light due to the pond. My HT setup makes the border light a non-issue, but that is definitely not the norm.



My opinion only, but if I were looking right now I'd definitely hold out to see what this Benq can do, it looks promising at this price point.


I was in the same boat, the light border didn’t bother me in my installation but I could see how it would be bothersome to others. There is also a legitimate argument to be made that the light border was not helping contrast.

What is bothersome to me is the light border is gone on this new chip. It really makes me wonder why TI couldn’t have gotten this right last year. Technically there is a thin strip of unused light around the edge of the image on the new DMD but on my 100” it measures less than an inch. Considering how much complaint, negative press and arguing went on about that damn light border it seems to me TI and the manufacturers could have saved themselves some headache. It just seems like a silly thing to cause a stir over.
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That and the video processing. Sorry I thought I mentioned that.
I already preordered it.
1 quick question is the fan noise still the same as the review sample you received at 1st ?
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post #170 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 09:42 AM - Thread Starter
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BenQ HT3550 True 4K Home Cinema Projector Review

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Originally Posted by Dave in Green View Post
You did mention the changes in fairly general terms. For those who want to make sure they don't miss anything but don't want to re-read the whole review it would be helpful if all the changes immediately stood out when just glancing at the review. For example some have used boldfaced red text when updating a long review with new observations.


I thought I put the video processing in italics but I must have missed it. Have a fever and have been taking meds like candy. Lol! I might just be out of it. I’ll fix later when I get home.
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post #171 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
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I already preordered it.

1 quick question is the fan noise still the same as the review sample you received at 1st ?


The tone when operating in 24Hz is a bit different. But, yeah, the fan noise is more or less the same. I got the same room measurements as well. Keep in mind: the fan noise in normal is totally acceptable for a small DLP— but I’m judging this model at it’s price. For $1500 I would have loved to see them turn down the volume a bit when in normal lamp. I don’t find it distracting but you’ll hear it over quiet movie soundtracks.

What to do if you find yourself stuck with no hope of rescue:
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The tone when operating in 24Hz is a bit different. But, yeah, the fan noise is more or less the same. I got the same room measurements as well. Keep in mind: the fan noise in normal is totally acceptable for a small DLP— but I’m judging this model at it’s price. For $1500 I would have loved to see them turn down the volume a bit when in normal lamp. I don’t find it distracting but you’ll hear it over quiet movie soundtracks.
ok good thing i ordered it from amazon . If the noise is too distracting for me .

The other thing is i've cats dog etc plants , aka dusty . Will probably have to clean it every 2-3 weeks. I'm guessing that's should be easy to do?

Also thanks for everything . If i was not watching tv on a 27" screen i would hold off since Optoma & other projector company should be releasing their projector this year.
but benq has been really nice to me with their 2050a & 2050 & some other projector i've got from them in the past . Always good to stick with what's working .
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post #173 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 11:29 AM
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Hey everyone, I have updated my review...
Thanks for the update...and do get yourself well.

When you're feeling up to it, could you take a quick look at the Aspect Ratio menu selection with one of your 2.40 scope movies to see if the image can be vertically stretched to remove the black bars without affecting the horizontal contents.

My original post with a bit more detail was in the other 3550 thread:
https://www.avsforum.com/forum/68-di...l#post57575116

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post #174 of 526 Old 03-12-2019, 06:09 PM
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Thanks for the post! I cannot wait to see how it compares to the 2050A,.
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post #175 of 526 Old 03-13-2019, 10:22 AM
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I have a BENQ HT1075 project on a 150" Silverticket screen. I use it in my basement which is completely darkened. The HT1075 has been serving well and I have been itching to upgrade awaiting a reasonable true 4K projector. I have two primary concerns:

1. Is the 2000 lumens on this model bright enough for HDR picture?
2. How would the throw/distance compare with the HT1075? Would it be equivalent replacement with a 4K upgrade?

Thanks!

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post #176 of 526 Old 03-13-2019, 11:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Keith AP View Post
Thanks for the update...and do get yourself well.

When you're feeling up to it, could you take a quick look at the Aspect Ratio menu selection with one of your 2.40 scope movies to see if the image can be vertically stretched to remove the black bars without affecting the horizontal contents.

My original post with a bit more detail was in the other 3550 thread:
https://www.avsforum.com/forum/68-di...l#post57575116


Thanks, I’m going on 3 weeks and it seems to be getting worse. I’ll test that out tonight.

What to do if you find yourself stuck with no hope of rescue:
Consider yourself lucky that life has been good to you so far. Alternatively, if life hasn't been good to you so far, which given your present circumstances seems to be more likely, consider yourself lucky that it won't be troubling you much longer...

-- Excerpt from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
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post #177 of 526 Old 03-13-2019, 12:28 PM
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Thanks, I’m going on 3 weeks and it seems to be getting worse. I’ll test that out tonight.

Isn't this the same amount of time you've had a HT3550 at home?

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post #178 of 526 Old 03-13-2019, 12:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Isn't this the same amount of time you've had a HT3550 at home?
Just about. I had to send it back for a few days for a rework. Wish I could have sent this cold back for a few days...

What to do if you find yourself stuck with no hope of rescue:
Consider yourself lucky that life has been good to you so far. Alternatively, if life hasn't been good to you so far, which given your present circumstances seems to be more likely, consider yourself lucky that it won't be troubling you much longer...

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Last edited by sage11x; 03-13-2019 at 12:44 PM.
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post #179 of 526 Old 03-13-2019, 12:40 PM
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Thanks, I’m going on 3 weeks and it seems to be getting worse. I’ll test that out tonight.
Go hit the steam room and breath deep for a while.

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post #180 of 526 Old 03-13-2019, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flydeep View Post
I have a BENQ HT1075 project on a 150" Silverticket screen. I use it in my basement which is completely darkened. The HT1075 has been serving well and I have been itching to upgrade awaiting a reasonable true 4K projector. I have two primary concerns:

1. Is the 2000 lumens on this model bright enough for HDR picture?
2. How would the throw/distance compare with the HT1075? Would it be equivalent replacement with a 4K upgrade?

Thanks!
1. My answer would be yes, but I need to set your expectations. Projectors are not capable of displaying HDR the way a flat screen can. The big issue is light output which is measured in nits. Modern LCDs can easily display 1000 nits. OLED tops out at 700/800 nits. The majority of 4K projectors: 100-450 nits. This means two things: one, projectors cannot display specular highlights the way a TV can. Two, proper HDR tone mapping is crucial to make sure your projector is faithfully reproducing the material without clipping or banding (which the HT3550 does better than any projector I've seen so far).
Now, this isn't to say that projectors can't take advantage of HDR. The HD 'standard' dynamic range is very limited so any improvement here is welcome. In addition, HDR is more than just nits-- it's also about color depth, volume, brightness and a wider color gamut. To this end, the HT3550 is the first projector at this price point to offer P3 wide color support. Use of this feature does make a big dent on lumen output so I would recommend dark room use only.


2. The throws are nearly identical. Yes, this is an ideal replacement if you are looking to jump to 4K/HDR.

What to do if you find yourself stuck with no hope of rescue:
Consider yourself lucky that life has been good to you so far. Alternatively, if life hasn't been good to you so far, which given your present circumstances seems to be more likely, consider yourself lucky that it won't be troubling you much longer...

-- Excerpt from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
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