Will UST 4K projectors replace big TVs? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 06:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Question Will UST 4K projectors replace big TVs?

I have a 75 inch 4K Samsung and an old benq 1070 projector. The bigger size beats the higher resolution. The only thing limiting projectors is the lower resolution of 1080p at sub $1000 and the lower lumens. But the placement benefits are huge. It’s like an on demand tv wherever u want.

I feel that by the time big 4K TVs come down in price the ust projectors in 4K will also become competitive.

What do u think?
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post #2 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 08:10 AM
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I don’t think it’s happening anytime soon. I have yet to see a UST projector that looks decent without a lenticular screen in a living room setup. The setup of hanging a screen is more than most want to deal with. While here at AVS 75” might be commonplace for a TV size, in the real world most are content with 55”-65”. There’s really not even a vast selection of TVs in the 75” – 85” range. There are some decent choices though.

Now, if they could simplify or omit the screen mounting process by means of adding feet or a pedestal to support the screen and allow for similar placement as TVs, then I think more people would consider UST as a TV replacement.

There’s also only a few decent USTs out there. Then there’s brand loyalty. I know a lot of people who only buy Samsung, Sony, Vizio, etc. Where’s the Sony UST? Oh wait, it’s $25K. Where’s the Samsung? Non-existent.

On the flip side, no one wants to deal with moving a 100” TV. I know I don’t.

I’m not knocking UST. I would love to replace all of my TVs with UST projectors, but for me the tech is just not there yet.
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post #3 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 11:11 AM
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Brightness and convenience matter a great deal. I don't see projectors ever replacing TVs in most homes. Mostly because the decorators scream for a BRIGHT family/living room location. It's often difficult to even get a proper home theater treatment in a room that's called the 'home theater'. So, projectors will be fighting ambient light issues until the end of time, and unless things have changed, a proper ALR screen carries a hefty price tag... and still doesn't actually fix the issue.

So, better contrast, better light output, and a one piece solution from TVs.

Maybe they will come with a UST complete package that actually makes sense. Maybe roll-up screens that are usable with a UST projector, so you can really hide them in cabinetry, or toss into a car and take it with you easily.

But, a big projection screen and a big TV are similarly difficult to move around, they aren't portable solutions and the setup of a UST projector with a screen can be very difficult to get perfect.

Then the question of the roll up OLED screen comes into question. When and if there will ever be a 120" diagonal that consumers could afford. At $10,000 I could see a lot of people jumping on that train.
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post #4 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ensyed View Post
I have a 75 inch 4K Samsung and an old benq 1070 projector. The bigger size beats the higher resolution. The only thing limiting projectors is the lower resolution of 1080p at sub $1000 and the lower lumens. But the placement benefits are huge. It’s like an on demand tv wherever u want.

I feel that by the time big 4K TVs come down in price the ust projectors in 4K will also become competitive.

What do u think?
As someone that just got a UST and went from a 65 Oled to a 100' ALR screen, it's pretty life changing.
Issues aside which include lighting, contrast, and location I do think this is a great solution for those that live in apartments and want the home theater experience. Movin my Oled to the bedroom and keeping the UST in the living room for movie nights and sports. (Early issues: HDR not displaying correctly and finding the perfect place, not near windows)
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post #5 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 12:21 PM
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I think a lot here are really missing the long game. USTs are a just a hold over until the next “big” thing rolls out, and subsequently becomes more affordable. Micro-LED on daisy chained pods is going to be the end of projection as we know it. When we have the ability to scale the screen size based on our budget, with infinite contrast and “all-the-nits!”, I don’t see how projection will be viable.

Any medium that requires casting light to anything other than the human eye is already dead in the water. The only reason projection still exists is because it’s still the easiest and most cost effective way to scale up the image. Eventually, this simply won’t be the case. It will require modular screens with 0* border, which we are just starting to see. At the seating distance needed for such size, the current led crop is already plenty small enough. There is still a lot of work to do here, but I’m willing to bet that OLED might not last as long as plasma did. And USTs are likely to be a mere footnote when we look back on projectors.


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post #6 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 12:43 PM
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yeah, I think scalable wall panels is going to kill all basic in home display territory. But it will be a LONG time before the price for a 150" module based display will be in the $2500 range. And you can get some pretty decent 4k projection (faux or not) these days.
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post #7 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 02:01 PM
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Yet another variation on the projector flat panel debate. I think we had one two weeks ago.

I actually agree with everyone so far.

@Radio81 “anytime soon” is a subjective term when it comes to these technologies baring any global catastrophic event plunging technology backwards. I’m old enough to think of 5-10 years as a short time span and I look at what was commonplace in home entertainment 10 years ago and if I go back 15 years it was stone age compared to the cheap stuff today even. Technology if left to its own is and has been progressing exponentially for at least the last few hundred years. Anyway it is growing so fast it makes for me speculating on the future really hard.
I do agree a cheap lenticular screen that comes in a 60” long cardboard tube with some peal and stick attachment for the wall shouldn’t be that hard to get a huge image.

@AV_Integrated So we slap the above $99 screen on the wall and set our $2000 laser UST projector some approximate distance below the screen turn on the projector and it scans finding the 4 corners of the screen and self adjusts the optics to a perfect fit and focus. The screen will look black as the laser will produce more than enough lumens for the 120” image working with the screen.

@da_103 I agree no one wants to lug a 120” flat panel up the 4 flights of stairs to Sheldon’s apartment. And if they ever do get the elevator fixed it wont fit anyway.

@juic-E-juice Is there really any difference if a black surface reflects 1000 nits or if it produces 1000 nits of 16k image on its own. All these things are just technology problems to overcome. As a kid I couldn’t believe a CRT tube could produce 3 colors. Just as Edison I’m sure saw color film a stretch as he was working on making a moving image in B&W.
Most likely what we will be watching won’t be ether or any of the above methods. The breakthrough hasn’t happened yet.

@JMCecil Again a long time might only be 5-10 years. It seems like yesterday I read about this DLP thing and I thought, that is just imposable. Tens of thousands of mirrors tipping and tilting super fast and light syncing from a color wheel and data streaming fast enough. No way will that ever work. I remember the immortal words of my calculus teacher in high school, Mr. Shepard “ You must be dreaming if you think someday a computer will be able to play chess young man!” He went on to explain how hard it would be to program even tic tac toe with ones and zeros. “Computer chess will stay fiction on Star Trek young man!” 4,000,000 mirrors now that’s a pipe dream.

It is fun to talk about this but none of us really know anything. All I know is I have replaced my TV 100% with a $500 projector and $25 of paint for a screen. It gives me more than I could have dreamed of for a 110” TV twenty years ago and to think I paid 800 bucks for a VHS player recorder when they first came out. I was so proud of that thing. Friends and family drove over to watch stuff on tape.
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post #8 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 02:21 PM
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I went from 65” 4k to a 1080p UST with 100” screen and thought I would be blown away. While size is an obvious difference, I miss the pop, resolution and image depth I had with the 4k TV. So much so that I’m considering moving to a 4k laser UST in hopes I will regain some of what’s missing. Otherwise, I would look into a 80”+ TV. But I agree once they figure out how to get large scale TVs into the home at a reasonable price, projectors are done, unless you are projecting 150” and up.
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post #9 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 03:16 PM
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@aerodynamics As I have mentioned my thoughts before, I don’t feel projection and TV like are the same thing at their core. For me it is more apples and oranges. Yes I can produce an image with my projector that looks more like a TV than a projector by using a dark screen and a small image boasting the FL into crazy high levels both hitting the screen and reflecting off the screen after attenuation by the dark surface. That’s not the goal of film-like projection though that uses a white screen and a black room and no ambient light. Our eyes are in two different states with both and low FL is actually the goal to produce that film-like quality. I’m set up in my room to do both very well and with just a projector watching the same movie each way is a very different experience. We have lots of friends that have large flat panel TVs and I have watched the same movie that way as well and it is beautiful and eye candy for sure but it is not film-like IMO.

I guess for me the understanding of this difference is what makes me have no desire to see my movies both huge and TV vivid and bright. I want my TV that way and with a projector I get fairly close at a size larger than I would go out and buy a TV that size and with some decent ambient light at least enough I don’t feel like I’m in the dark in a theater. But my movies I want enormous and immersive and no way at that size in the dark do I want 100 nits let alone 1000 nits. 40 nits is more than enough for film even when it is digitally created film.

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post #10 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 04:53 PM
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post #11 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 11:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AV_Integrated View Post
Brightness and convenience matter a great deal. I don't see projectors ever replacing TVs in most homes. Mostly because the decorators scream for a BRIGHT family/living room location. It's often difficult to even get a proper home theater treatment in a room that's called the 'home theater'. So, projectors will be fighting ambient light issues until the end of time, and unless things have changed, a proper ALR screen carries a hefty price tag... and still doesn't actually fix the issue.

So, better contrast, better light output, and a one piece solution from TVs.

Maybe they will come with a UST complete package that actually makes sense. Maybe roll-up screens that are usable with a UST projector, so you can really hide them in cabinetry, or toss into a car and take it with you easily.

But, a big projection screen and a big TV are similarly difficult to move around, they aren't portable solutions and the setup of a UST projector with a screen can be very difficult to get perfect.

Then the question of the roll up OLED screen comes into question. When and if there will ever be a 120" diagonal that consumers could afford. At $10,000 I could see a lot of people jumping on that train.
You don't think a sufficiently bright projector and a flat black screen is ever going to be a workable option ? A 0.1 gain flat black surface looks pretty black even in a well-lit living room. Yet a 12,000 lumen projector on such a 150" black surface would still be 18 foot lamberts. 27 foot lamberts on a 120" black surface.

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post #12 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by aerodynamics View Post
I went from 65” 4k to a 1080p UST with 100” screen and thought I would be blown away. While size is an obvious difference, I miss the pop, resolution and image depth I had with the 4k TV. So much so that I’m considering moving to a 4k laser UST in hopes I will regain some of what’s missing. Otherwise, I would look into a 80”+ TV. But I agree once they figure out how to get large scale TVs into the home at a reasonable price, projectors are done, unless you are projecting 150” and up.
What it comes down to is that you are looking in the wrong price point, if you want the extra pop and contrast, you have to look at the more expensive projectors.
Just like oLED TV's vs regular LED TV's, there is a big difference in contrast with more expensive projectors.

Laser doesn't solve the contrast problem, it only solves it on total blackouts or in some cases improves with dimming.
You need native contrast from numbers that only the likes of a JVC (and some Sony's) can produce, or a silly expensive Sim2 or Christie.

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post #13 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 11:52 PM
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Originally Posted by dreamer View Post
You don't think a sufficiently bright projector and a flat black screen is ever going to be a workable option ? A 0.1 gain flat black surface looks pretty black even in a well-lit living room. Yet a 12,000 lumen projector on such a 150" black surface would still be 18 foot lamberts. 27 foot lamberts on a 120" black surface.
Possibly on a really well designed screen, maybe, but TV's hold ANSI contrast better because the light isn't coming from a long distance.
Doesn't sound that realistic unless they make breakthroughs with LED lamps or something else, because that is too much heat and fan noise for most peoples' homes.

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post #14 of 78 Old 05-02-2019, 11:57 PM
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IMHO, no.


Just as flat screens replaced bulky rear projection TV setups, larger flat screens will replace UST projectors.


The clear advantage of a flat screen remains simple: You'll be looking straight at the source of brightness, mostly immune to ambient light (i.e. images won't look washed out).


The way I see it UST projectors are mostly for people that want to avoid installation issues that otherwise come along with a dedicated home theater.
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post #15 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 12:00 AM
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To Clarify:

I also agree, a big NO to the thread title in that they will ever replace TV's...

However to the other question of will they be a workable option (sometimes, at times they already are).

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post #16 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 08:32 AM
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The answer for me, for now, is yes. We have a 100" UST in our living room which would have been problematic to set up a standard throw projector. It has surpassed our expectations.

For the future I would say no. Roll up screens or modular screen solutions, or something we haven't thought of yet will eventually be what we are all looking at. Who knows when that will be however.

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post #17 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 09:09 AM
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It's pretty obvious who actually owns or even tried UST... Will UST replace TVs, no, but will it replace "big" TVs. Definitely will take a chunk of market from large TVs along with front projectors, but there is room for improvement especially price, will take time. For "big" TVs I would consider anything larger then 75", but even that people find too large for small apartments and majority of people don't own homes across the world. So what if you want to experience a bigger picture, but don't want to have a huge box in your living room? Well, before you would consider a regular front projector, but then you will find out you have to deal with wires, mounting which you either don't want to do or can't. That brings us a new option UST projector, it's a box that you just put against the wall and... bam, 120" with not much hassle. Could work either temporary placement or permanent. This may not be for everyone today, but it's a near future of content viewing on a large screen or at least until the next "big" thing. To me "big" box TVs and front bulb projectors is now a thing of a past, I don't plan to ever go back to that dated tech.

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post #18 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coderguy View Post
To Clarify:

I also agree, a big NO to the thread title in that they will ever replace TV's...

However to the other question of will they be a workable option (sometimes, at times they already are).
This goes to the question of degrees, and I do agree. I wouldn’t put a projector outside at high noon and expect any type of PQ, but on the other hand an 80” OLED wouldn’t be something I would enjoy watching at high noon with the sun shining off the screen even though it might be a little better.

So it all comes down to degrees of acceptance. For me I have a room that is more like a living room than it is a theater. Been there done that HT option. It is a great way to go but it wasn’t what fit my desires any longer. So my room is controlled like a theater but feels and looks like a living room. It can be black or it can seem quite social like a living room when lighting is selected for TV watching.

That’s how we use it. My projector moves closer to the screen for a smaller / brighter TV image I can make it as small as 60” and it gets really bright like a TV, or I can make it as large as 110” and at 8’ seating it is quite cinematic.

So I’m living proof that a projector can be a TV and totally replace a TV. Given the right degree of setting. It doesn’t have to be UST or ALR screen in order to work. We watch it in TV mode every night and normally at a screen size of about 80” and that is larger than any TV I can afford. It’s nice and TV like and when we turn off the lights and zoom out to 110” crank up the sound turn on the subs and pop in a BD like Aquaman the living room turns into a theater. I actually feel holding back on the TV size makes the movie size all the more impressive when it happens.

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post #19 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 10:40 AM
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There’s also only a few decent USTs out there. Then there’s brand loyalty. I know a lot of people who only buy Samsung, Sony, Vizio, etc. Where’s the Sony UST? Oh wait, it’s $25K. Where’s the Samsung? Non-existent.
The technology is not really new anymore and not overly expensive as we can see it, so where are USTs from big brands? The execs are not dumb, if they release UST projectors left and right for cheap and start marketing them as TVs with big picture, it will kill off their "big" TV money maker. If LG is any indication they are about to release UST which is priced way up there (rumored at $6k) of course it's a safe approach for them since their 86" TV is 3k, so they don't want to affect their line. Ask yourself, would you buy 86" TV for $3k or get UST projector with 150" projected image if say it was $2k from LG?

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post #20 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 12:03 PM
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The technology is not really new anymore and not overly expensive as we can see it, so where are USTs from big brands? The execs are not dumb, if they release UST projectors left and right for cheap and start marketing them as TVs with big picture, it will kill off their "big" TV money maker. If LG is any indication they are about to release UST which is priced way up there (rumored at $6k) of course it's a safe approach for them since their 86" TV is 3k, so they don't want to affect their line. Ask yourself, would you buy 86" TV for $3k or get UST projector with 150" projected image if say it was $2k from LG?
And how much for ALR screen to match with that UST?

Would also love to see a shootout with the 3550 and the equivalent UST.

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post #21 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 12:57 PM - Thread Starter
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So the moral of the story is buy one of each 😀

Seriously, I would love a 4K UST to Project a 120 screen (once I get blackout blinds for my living room)
I watch very little tv. And only at night so I like the cinematic experience w surround sound and a big screen on demand.
I never watch anything on an iPhone or iPad ec. But my kids love it and watch on any screen.
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post #22 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 12:59 PM
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Would also love to see a shootout with the 3550 and the equivalent UST.

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The outcome would totally depend on the room the shootout took place in and if they were side by side or done at two different times.

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post #23 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 01:19 PM
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The outcome would totally depend on the room the shootout took place in and if they were side by side or done at two different times.
I just can only take so much of his fanaticism. It's so I'll placed. And from everything I read, image quality matters and they just don't simply match up yet. So you're paying more and getting less.

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post #24 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 02:10 PM
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I just can only take so much of his fanaticism. It's so I'll placed. And from everything I read, image quality matters and they just don't simply match up yet. So you're paying more and getting less.

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Haha here we go again with you, times are tough? I get it it's difficult to age and not understand how quickly tech world shifts around you. People no longer carry those bulky DSLRs because image quality is superior, majority use smartphone cams which are actually in some cases more expensive and satisfied with picture quality results. So you are paying more, but getting less? Why? Convenient. Same with UST where convenience is one of the major selling points even if it may loose a bit in image quality to some high end projectors.

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post #25 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 02:13 PM
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Haha here we go again with you, times are tough? I get it it's difficult to age and not understand how quickly tech world shifts around you. People no longer carry those bulky DSLRs because image quality is superior, majority use smartphone cams which are actually in some cases more expensive and satisfied with picture quality results. So you are paying more, but getting less? Why? Convenient. Same with UST where convenience is one of the major selling points even if it may loose a bit in image quality to some high end projectors.
No. You're just a fanatic who can't accept UST's aren't at the performance level of their traditional counterparts yet. Or that ceiling mounting is still required since a vast majority have a center channel. So one way or the other you're finagling a solution to place the pj. And you always fail to mention it takes a better ALR screen for them to really be at their best.

Hence I mention a shootout against a similar priced traditional. But everyone happy with their traditional couldn't care less about acquiring a UST because they already know better.

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post #26 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by dbpaddler View Post
No. You're just a fanatic who can't accept UST's aren't at the performance level of their traditional counterparts yet. Or that ceiling mounting is still required since a vast majority have a center channel. So one way or the other you're finagling a solution to place the pj. And you always fail to mention it takes a better ALR screen for them to really be at their best.

Hence I mention a shootout against a similar priced traditional. But everyone happy with their traditional couldn't care less about acquiring a UST because they already know better.

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Amazing, your fanaticism against USTs is just over the board instead of embracing cool new tech which makes things convenient and fun with big picture, hopefully your blood pressure stays normal when you see them a common place in the coming years. Good luck to you.

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post #27 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 03:39 PM
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Originally Posted by klas View Post
Amazing, your fanaticism against USTs is just over the board instead of embracing cool new tech which makes things convenient and fun with big picture, hopefully your blood pressure stays normal when you see them a common place in the coming years. Good luck to you.
Why would I be against? I started looking at them when I decided to go bigger on my screen, and my JVC would no longer do the trick. None of them really fit the need. There isn't one that comes close to my jvc. I temporarily picked up a 2050a to meet my screen size requirement. And every one I did research on was over priced for the image quality it's throwing. They are still a niche at this stage. If they fill a need for their design, great. But I'd rather spend the money on the 3550 as it seems it'll throw a better pic w/better color, better black levels and well under $2k. Don't need portability. Don't care about a laser source, yet. Don't need to buy a new screen. I'm fine with changing bulbs when needed if it means I have a nicer pic along the way. And I don't need to reroute my hdmi an additional 15ft and configure a new ceiling mount. And with less shifting capability, dialing in the mounting is a bit harder to boot.

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post #28 of 78 Old 05-03-2019, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by dbpaddler View Post
Why would I be against? I started looking at them when I decided to go bigger on my screen, and my JVC would no longer do the trick. None of them really fit the need. There isn't one that comes close to my jvc. I temporarily picked up a 2050a to meet my screen size requirement. And every one I did research on was over priced for the image quality it's throwing. They are still a niche at this stage. If they fill a need for their design, great. But I'd rather spend the money on the 3550 as it seems it'll throw a better pic w/better color, better black levels and well under $2k. Don't need portability. Don't care about a laser source, yet. Don't need to buy a new screen. I'm fine with changing bulbs when needed if it means I have a nicer pic along the way. And I don't need to reroute my hdmi an additional 15ft and configure a new ceiling mount. And with less shifting capability, dialing in the mounting is a bit harder to boot.

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Clearly it's not for everyone. If you have HT room and already wired for a projector you will get more bang for your buck with just getting another front projector in place of it, so you are not getting the benefit of the convenience UST provides. But you are a minority, most people don't have the space or budget for HT room or perhaps they are renting and can't do wiring and would like some temporary setup or simply don't want projector hanging above their heads in the living room and be an eye sore. The people who would be shopping for a big TV for their living room are the target audience for UST projector, not the hardcore HT room enthusiasts. Of course today it's still expensive, but as more options get released the tech should get cheaper and we'll see some affordable options in the coming years along with cheaper ALR screens.

Again on image quality I wouldn't mind seeing comparison between comparable projectors, but I already know that higher priced front projector do have better contrast, but that's still not enough for me to consider that form factor any longer. Last Game of Thrones epic battle episode looked amazing on my laser UST and that's good enough for me.

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post #29 of 78 Old 05-06-2019, 10:20 AM
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You don't think a sufficiently bright projector and a flat black screen is ever going to be a workable option ? A 0.1 gain flat black surface looks pretty black even in a well-lit living room. Yet a 12,000 lumen projector on such a 150" black surface would still be 18 foot lamberts. 27 foot lamberts on a 120" black surface.
I think a UST projector or a standard throw projector is already a workable option if the room is right and the person viewing is willing to live with the tradeoff in image quality.

But, if you are talking as a true family room replacement, I think the physics is a fight, and the same physics that makes a 120" UST projection setup in a fairly bright room difficult are the physics which make a 120" roll up OLED screen practical.

That is, technology.

Technology moves forward, but sometimes at an anemic rate.

By the time we have that 12,000 lumen projector, we likely will have the 120" roll up OLED screen (or whatever comes next). I'm not at all sold on 'modular' cubes as alignment and image matching is MUCH more difficult than people understand. But, once again, I'm just speaking from my experience on these things, which may be irrelevant as the technology matures.

I hope we do get 10,000+ lumens from front projection as a sub $3,000 option for HDR and regular viewing using the latest in 4K and 8K technologies with contrast that blows away the best JVC projectors on the market. But, I just don't forsee that in the near future, and in the far future, I see OLED (or similar). I think most of the front projector nuts all agree that if they had to choose between front projection and a flat panel of the same size, that the flat panel is the way they would go (most, not all). If I could get a 160" roll up OLED... Yep, my projector would be gone.

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post #30 of 78 Old 05-06-2019, 12:11 PM
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160" Rollable Oleds... haha... and I am waiting for Black Mirror S01 E03 tech... but realistically wireless VR might might actually become popular not only for games, but also for large screen experience and if Oculus Quest (which is coming out in the next couple of weeks) is any indication it's an affordable tech. Of course this is 1st gen so there is room for improvement to have less bulk with more comfort as well as 4k per eye.

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