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post #1 of 31 Old 06-30-2019, 08:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Question Is there a difference between 4K and 1080p?

I just got my first projector (Epson 5050ub) with a Silver Ticket 120" (STR-169120). I have Windows 10 text scaled to 250% if that makes any difference. My first reaction is that the texts are not very clear. As I type this from 12 feet away, the sharpness is equivalent to my 70" 1080p tv. It's nowhere near as crisp as my 70" 4K tv. After I loaded Destiny 2, I really couldn't tell much of a difference. Below are the comparison pictures with my iPhone X:

https://imgur.com/a/fwKuvGN

The steps are different, but I think that's mainly due to the ambient lighting within the game shining during my first shot (4k) and not being there on my second shot (1080p). If you ignore the steps and look at the character model, there's hardly a difference. The texture quality setting is on "Highest" in-game for both shots. I also loaded up Heroes of the Storm, and the results are the same. A friend of mine also looked at both games, and couldn't tell a difference. I can take some pictures for that game as well if anyone is interested.

Like I mentioned earlier, I have a Vizio 70" 1080p as well as Vizio 70" 4k, and I can spot the difference between those two in a heartbeat; It's night and day. Is this lack of picture quality difference for a projector normal? Is there a setting that I'm missing here?


Edit 1: I went ahead and took 2 pictures of a different game with my camera (iPhone X) just in case Destiny 2 has a bug with resolution changes. To make sure I keep the variations as low as possible, I used a tripod and uploaded it to a site that doesn't compress the image. Below are the results:

https://lensdump.com/i/WPI3d9 (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WPIsio (1080p)
https://lensdump.com/i/WPI4M2
https://lensdump.com/i/WPIKav


Edit 2: Since not everyone plays games and the games may have issues with rendering 4k, I took two screenshots of a movie:

https://lensdump.com/i/2160p.WFphO0 (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WF66oc (1080p)

The screenshot files are unedited and large (you'll have to click on "load full resolution" on the website). I'm using MPC-HC and madvr to play the movies. Both files are remux.

1. Am I blind to not see a difference?
2. If there isn't a difference, then this isn't normal right?
3. Is anyone able to upload their screenshots of 4k vs 1080p?

Last edited by prometheusdt; 07-05-2019 at 06:31 AM.
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post #2 of 31 Old 06-30-2019, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by prometheusdt View Post
I just got my first projector (Epson 5050ub) with a Silver Ticket 120" (STR-169120). I have Windows 10 text scaled to 250% if that makes any difference. My first reaction is that the texts are not very clear. As I type this from 12 feet away, the sharpness is equivalent to my 70" 1080p tv. It's nowhere near as crisp as my 70" 4K tv. After I loaded Destiny 2, I really couldn't tell much of a difference. Below are the comparison pictures with my iPhone X:

https://imgur.com/a/fwKuvGN

The steps are different, but I think that's mainly due to the ambient lighting within the game shining during my first shot (4k) and not being there on my second shot (1080p). If you ignore the steps and look at the character model, there's hardly a difference. The texture quality setting is on "Highest" in-game for both shots. I also loaded up Heroes of the Storm, and the results are the same. A friend of mine also looked at both games, and couldn't tell a difference. I can take some pictures for that game as well if anyone is interested.

Like I mentioned earlier, I have a Vizio 70" 1080p as well as Vizio 70" 4k, and I can spot the difference between those two in a heartbeat; It's night and day. Is this picture quality difference for a projector? Is there a setting that I'm missing here?
That's because your Epson 5050 is not 4K. The Epson 5050 is a native 1080p projector with a pixel count of around 2 million. Epson uses pixel shifting to double the 5050's native resolution to produce an image of around 4 million pixels on screen. This makes for a nice facsimile of 4K but it is still missing half the pixels of a true 4K image-- which is around 8 million pixels. This maybe won't be immediately apparent with video but becomes obvious when you connect a PC or throw up a 4K test pattern.

The issue of course is that Epson advertises the 5050 as a 4K projector-- which it is not.

There are three basic types of '4K' projector available right now:

1. 1080p x2 projectors or so called "Faux K" projectors (Epson, JVC E-shift models) that use pixel shifting to double their native 1080p resolution to around 4 million individually addressable pixels on screen.

2. 'True 4K' DLP projectors (BenQ, Optoma, Viewsonic, etc) which also use pixel shifting but are able to double or quadruple their native resolution to produce 8 million individually addressable pixels on screen.

3. 'Native 4K' projectors (Sony, JVC) that actually use 4K imaging chips with 8 million elements for a 1:1 ratio of imaging element to pixel-- no pixel shifting required. These are, obviously, the most expensive.

The general consensus is native 4K is the sharpest solution with DLP, especially the higher dollar DLP projectors equipped with expensive glass, coming awfully close. No projector will be as sharp as your TV because even native 4K projectors from Sony/JVC have to content with convergence (they are 3-chip projectors) and lens imperfections.

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Last edited by sage11x; 06-30-2019 at 09:21 PM.
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post #3 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 12:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prometheusdt View Post
I just got my first projector (Epson 5050ub) with a Silver Ticket 120" (STR-169120). I have Windows 10 text scaled to 250% if that makes any difference. My first reaction is that the texts are not very clear. As I type this from 12 feet away, the sharpness is equivalent to my 70" 1080p tv. It's nowhere near as crisp as my 70" 4K tv. After I loaded Destiny 2, I really couldn't tell much of a difference. Below are the comparison pictures with my iPhone X:

https://imgur.com/a/fwKuvGN

The steps are different, but I think that's mainly due to the ambient lighting within the game shining during my first shot (4k) and not being there on my second shot (1080p). If you ignore the steps and look at the character model, there's hardly a difference. The texture quality setting is on "Highest" in-game for both shots. I also loaded up Heroes of the Storm, and the results are the same. A friend of mine also looked at both games, and couldn't tell a difference. I can take some pictures for that game as well if anyone is interested.

Like I mentioned earlier, I have a Vizio 70" 1080p as well as Vizio 70" 4k, and I can spot the difference between those two in a heartbeat; It's night and day. Is this lack of picture quality difference for a projector normal? Is there a setting that I'm missing here?
In addition to the points Sage made, are you sure the projector is even receiving a 4k source signal ? Poor cables, long cables, and certain video cards (since you are talking about a PC as a source) could all result in the projector only receiving a 1080P signal. It will attempt to do its doubling as Sage mentioned even if it only gets a 1080P signal, but that will be even less effective than if it actually receives a 4k signal and then "throws half the pixels away".


Somewhere in the Epson menu you should be able to confirm what resolution it is actually receiving. That would be a first step to confirm the projector is actually starting with a 4k signal.
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post #4 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 12:47 AM
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Originally Posted by sage11x View Post
The general consensus is native 4K is the sharpest solution with DLP, especially the higher dollar DLP projectors equipped with expensive glass, coming awfully close. No projector will be as sharp as your TV because even native 4K projectors from Sony/JVC have to content with convergence (they are 3-chip projectors) and lens imperfections.
I only bring this up because the OP is using desktop text as a factor here. But the only 4K DLP I've ever seen was the BenQ LK970. On video content, it was indeed as sharp as my RS4500. But on desktop text at 4K it was quite blurry. Like we were thinking "this has to be out of focus" but focusing it further only blurred it more. I think this is due to the DLP panels not being true native 4K and it shows up really obviously in this application. Tried some games and they looked super sharp. We had to scale desktop to 150% for it to be usable, not due to text size, but due to blurriness.
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post #5 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 07:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by dreamer View Post
In addition to the points Sage made, are you sure the projector is even receiving a 4k source signal ? Poor cables, long cables, and certain video cards (since you are talking about a PC as a source) could all result in the projector only receiving a 1080P signal. It will attempt to do its doubling as Sage mentioned even if it only gets a 1080P signal, but that will be even less effective than if it actually receives a 4k signal and then "throws half the pixels away".


Somewhere in the Epson menu you should be able to confirm what resolution it is actually receiving. That would be a first step to confirm the projector is actually starting with a 4k signal.

I included 2 pictures in my link above that has pictures of the Info screen from Epson with the resolution that it's showing at. Does that definitively mean that it's outputting at the said resolution or can Epson be wrong?
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The most likely reason it is blurry is due to window 10 scaling. You need to turn that off and set everything to 100% there are advanced settings you don't want it to do any of that. This can lead to blurry image of text. It's certainly not the 5050UBs fault.

The resolution of the 5050UB is only a fraction less sharp than the Sony VW995ES.
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post #7 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 08:08 AM
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I only bring this up because the OP is using desktop text as a factor here. But the only 4K DLP I've ever seen was the BenQ LK970. On video content, it was indeed as sharp as my RS4500. But on desktop text at 4K it was quite blurry. Like we were thinking "this has to be out of focus" but focusing it further only blurred it more. I think this is due to the DLP panels not being true native 4K and it shows up really obviously in this application. Tried some games and they looked super sharp. We had to scale desktop to 150% for it to be usable, not due to text size, but due to blurriness.


That makes sense.

The LK970 uses the .66” DMD which is a really interesting solution. The DMD itself is a half 4K resolution of 2716 x 1528 that is then doubled to get the full 4K 8.3 million pixels required to qualify as UHD. The issue is the resolution is definitely not the standard matrix 3840 x 2160. Technically, all the pixels of the 3840 x 2160 are represented but seeing as the pixel shift moves each pixel up and slightly to the left— they aren’t in the same matrix which is where TI’s image processing comes in. On fine text this could definitely be an issue as the .66 is not actually capable of rendering a straight 1 pixel line.

Ironically, the .47” DMD is arguably better here as each of it’s 2 million elements is quadrupled in a way that recreates the 3840 x 2160 matrix. The argument then comes down to pixel overlap and, bum bum BUM, lens quality.
On the first issue, some people have argued that the pixel overlap will cause some of the finest image detail to be lost. That makes sense but then DLP doesn’t have to contend with the convergence problem of getting three 4K panels to line up perfectly so it ends up not being as bad (in comparison) as you would think. The bigger issue for the .47” DMD equipped DLPs has been lens quality. These are budget 4K projectors selling for thousands less than native 4K solutions and they just can’t afford the fancy glass. There are DLPs out there with impressive lens but all of those invariably end up getting the larger .66 chip. The best quality .47 DLP I know of is the BenQ HT5550. I saw it at the launch event in NYC on a monstrous 170” screen. While I’m sure the BenQ guys would have preferred a smaller screen to better use the HT5550’s 1800 lumens, it was a good showcase for the lens BenQ equipped it with. Clearly the BenQ is not meant to compete with a native 4K projector but you begin to see what the smaller chip is capable of given a higher quality lens. Of course, the .47 has other limitations that keep it out of the higher priced machines, native contrast being one.
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post #8 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 08:23 AM
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The most likely reason it is blurry is due to window 10 scaling. You need to turn that off and set everything to 100% there are advanced settings you don't want it to do any of that. This can lead to blurry image of text. It's certainly not the 5050UBs fault.



The resolution of the 5050UB is only a fraction less sharp than the Sony VW995ES.


The Epson 5050 is a fantastic projector. For the price it offers a lot and it has one of the better HDR pictures in the projector world right now (HDR is really hard to get right on a projector). But this statement is just false. It’s maybe only a fraction less sharp is you’re sitting back far enough that the benefits of 4K resolution are not as pronounced. It is literally short 4.15 million pixels than the Sony 295ES or even one of the budget DLPs. It’s sharp— but not as sharp as the competition. How could it be?

Again, not knocking Epson, I’d much rather have the pixel shift than simply native 1080p. Plus, the pixel shift is effective in combating 3LCD’s pixel gap. It also, to my eye, has a positive effect on blur. But to call it 4K is, I’m sorry, simply not accurate. We debated the merits of DLP’s ‘True 4k’ nomenclature for months and it actually produces the 8.3 million pixels. How Epson has gotten a pass on this I’ll never know.
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Originally Posted by sage11x View Post
The Epson 5050 is a fantastic projector. For the price it offers a lot and it has one of the better HDR pictures in the projector world right now (HDR is really hard to get right on a projector). But this statement is just false. It’s maybe only a fraction less sharp is you’re sitting back far enough that the benefits of 4K resolution are not as pronounced. It is literally short 4.15 million pixels than the Sony 295ES or even one of the budget DLPs. It’s sharp— but not as sharp as the competition. How could it be?

Again, not knocking Epson, I’d much rather have the pixel shift than simply native 1080p. Plus, the pixel shift is effective in combating 3LCD’s pixel gap. It also, to my eye, has a positive effect on blur. But to call it 4K is, I’m sorry, simply not accurate. We debated the merits of DLP’s ‘True 4k’ nomenclature for months and it actually produces the 8.3 million pixels. How Epson has gotten a pass on this I’ll never know.
Sure I'm not debating any of what you said, I'm just saying that it is only very barely less sharp than a ~35-40K Sony Projector. That's saying a lot for the technology. They are so close with their technology and the image processing for HDR really sets the bar. Once they switch to native 4K or maybe better yet shifter 4k and have a laser they will be making the best price point projector on the market. I don't think they are far away.
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post #10 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 08:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by sage11x View Post
That's because your Epson 5050 is not 4K. The Epson 5050 is a native 1080p projector with a pixel count of around 2 million. Epson uses pixel shifting to double the 5050's native resolution to produce an image of around 4 million pixels on screen. This makes for a nice facsimile of 4K but it is still missing half the pixels of a true 4K image-- which is around 8 million pixels. This maybe won't be immediately apparent with video but becomes obvious when you connect a PC or throw up a 4K test pattern.

The issue of course is that Epson advertises the 5050 as a 4K projector-- which it is not.

There are three basic types of '4K' projector available right now:

1. 1080p x2 projectors or so called "Faux K" projectors (Epson, JVC E-shift models) that use pixel shifting to double their native 1080p resolution to around 4 million individually addressable pixels on screen.

2. 'True 4K' DLP projectors (BenQ, Optoma, Viewsonic, etc) which also use pixel shifting but are able to double or quadruple their native resolution to produce 8 million individually addressable pixels on screen.

3. 'Native 4K' projectors (Sony, JVC) that actually use 4K imaging chips with 8 million elements for a 1:1 ratio of imaging element to pixel-- no pixel shifting required. These are, obviously, the most expensive.

The general consensus is native 4K is the sharpest solution with DLP, especially the higher dollar DLP projectors equipped with expensive glass, coming awfully close. No projector will be as sharp as your TV because even native 4K projectors from Sony/JVC have to content with convergence (they are 3-chip projectors) and lens imperfections.

While I understand that the 5050ub may be inferior to other projectors in terms of sharpness, that doesn't explain why there isn't a difference to the sharpness level when I switch resolution from 1080p to 4k. I'm not comparing it to other projectors, I'm comparing it to itself.

I went ahead and took 2 pictures of a different game with my camera (iPhone X) just in case Destiny 2 has a bug with resolution changes. To make sure I keep the variations as low as possible, I used a tripod and uploaded it to a site that doesn't compress the image. Below are the results:

https://lensdump.com/i/WPI3d9 (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WPIsio (1080p)
https://lensdump.com/i/WPI4M2
https://lensdump.com/i/WPIKav

Let me know if my eyes are bad, but those images are virtually identical. Because I'm new to projectors, I feel like I'm missing something here. Like there's a simple setting that I ignorantly forgot to turn on. Any troubleshooting ideas that you guys have? Either that or I need to consider doing an RMA with this thing.
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post #11 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 09:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by DocOrange88 View Post
The most likely reason it is blurry is due to window 10 scaling. You need to turn that off and set everything to 100% there are advanced settings you don't want it to do any of that. This can lead to blurry image of text. It's certainly not the 5050UBs fault.

The resolution of the 5050UB is only a fraction less sharp than the Sony VW995ES.
Are you referring to leaving the scaling in Window's display setting (https://images.idgesg.net/images/art...64460-orig.jpg) to 100%? Does this setting have any effect on my in-game scaling?

I've also seen people say to change the scaling in the properties/compatibility tab (https://46c4ts1tskv22sdav81j9c69-wpe...e179b55f20.png). Should I be messing with this, and if so, which of the three options (application, system, system (enhanced)) should I choose?
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post #12 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by prometheusdt View Post
While I understand that the 5050ub may be inferior to other projectors in terms of sharpness, that doesn't explain why there isn't a difference to the sharpness level when I switch resolution from 1080p to 4k. I'm not comparing it to other projectors, I'm comparing it to itself.



I went ahead and took 2 pictures of a different game with my camera (iPhone X) just in case Destiny 2 has a bug with resolution changes. To make sure I keep the variations as low as possible, I used a tripod and uploaded it to a site that doesn't compress the image. Below are the results:



https://lensdump.com/i/WPI3d9 (4K)

https://lensdump.com/i/WPIsio (1080p)

https://lensdump.com/i/WPI4M2

https://lensdump.com/i/WPIKav



Let me know if my eyes are bad, but those images are virtually identical. Because I'm new to projectors, I feel like I'm missing something here. Like there's a simple setting that I ignorantly forgot to turn on. Any troubleshooting ideas that you guys have? Either that or I need to consider doing an RMA with this thing.

I would post this question in the official 5050 thread. Plenty of owners over there who will likely be eager to help.

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post #13 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by DocOrange88 View Post
Sure I'm not debating any of what you said, I'm just saying that it is only very barely less sharp than a ~35-40K Sony Projector. That's saying a lot for the technology. They are so close with their technology and the image processing for HDR really sets the bar. Once they switch to native 4K or maybe better yet shifter 4k and have a laser they will be making the best price point projector on the market. I don't think they are far away.


The 5050 just came out! You’re already looking past it?

The projector you’re describing sounds like the LS10500. Laser, pixel shifted ‘enhanced’ resolution. I haven’t heard anything about a native 4K Epson— even if your speculation turns out to be true and they are working on a native 4K successor to the LS10500 the price is likely to put it well outside the discussion of this sub forum.

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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Originally Posted by sage11x View Post
The 5050 just came out! You’re already looking past it?

The projector you’re describing sounds like the LS10500. Laser, pixel shifted ‘enhanced’ resolution. I haven’t heard anything about a native 4K Epson— even if your speculation turns out to be true and they are working on a native 4K successor to the LS10500 the price is likely to put it well outside the discussion of this sub forum.
Always looking to the future

The idea of taking the current projector and swapping in a laser seems like a cost of about $1500 bucks so adding native toss in another 1500 bucks...and I think you get to about 6K I bet. I don't know that Epson will move forward however if they have go give up brightness, they are highly attached to that and it really helps the HDR work so darn well.
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post #15 of 31 Old 07-01-2019, 07:44 PM
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I am not a gamer but from what I have read true 4K games are very rare as most are just upscaled 1080p. Are you sure the game your using is native 4K? Compare a 4k video to the same video in 1080p and I bet you will see a difference. Ignore any comparison to a TV as they are just different animals entirely.

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post #16 of 31 Old 07-02-2019, 05:21 PM
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This is an interesting question because I don't think that my situation is unique. My room is 13 x 17 and I have a 10 year old Panasonic PT-AX200U , still running the original bulb on a 96 inch Vutec Silver Screen . The projector lens is about 15.5 feet away and I still enjoy the 720P picture in light control viewing. My routine is usually Friday PM and Sat/Sunday afternoon on for football etc. I reset the bulb hour counter after 6,000 hours and followed the routine of only turning it on when I will watch if for a few hours and letting the PJ cool down till turning completely off. To make daily evening TV viewing for short bursts I out a 50 inch Samsung 4K on the side wall and with the L shaped recliner combo, I can just sit opposite that TV. I also have one of the few Comcast X-1 boxes with a dual HD output of HDMI and component. The HMDI and my Pioneer Blue Ray player go via HDMI to a Pioneer Elite SC O7 receiver and then to the PJ.

I added all of this because I know the Samsung TV is a more detailed picture than the 720P PJ and I sit about 8 feet from the 50 inch screen. If the bulb burns out on the PJ I can use that as an excuse to get another PJ. However, I don't have any 4K video and don't plan to add any sources since I don't have time to watch a lot of content . I also am very happy with the video pass through on the Pioneer Elite and don't nee to upgrade to a new UHD Blue Ray player . Maybe in the future, but right now my only future purchase is a tool up between a new PJ or a wild card of something like an 85 or 86 inch flat screen and take down the screen and PJ to sell to a coworker.

I really like the pictures on these 85 inch and up TVs and can watch that all of the time and rearrange my media room. But I still love the 96 inch screen , but can't go bigger since my Carver speakers will be in the way.

So what I want to learn is from 14 or 15 feet or so viewing distance of a 96 inch screen with a 720P PJ, is will I and others being seeing a very visible difference from my 720P going to a 1280 native, 4K shift or a native 4K like the Sony SXRD 4k for 5K or so?

My problem is also with the long throw distance which limits my selections. Off the top of my head I was thinking of the Epson 3700 which is priced very nicely at times, the Epson 4010 which is several hundred more of whatever AVS member suggestions from their experiences. Unless there is some new product news, I don't think that there are upcoming TVs larger than 86 inches or sop like the LG for a few grand coming this fall or winter.

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post #17 of 31 Old 07-04-2019, 04:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Since not everyone plays games and the games may have issues with rendering 4k, I took two screenshots of a movie:

https://lensdump.com/i/WF6J8K (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WF66oc (1080p)

The screenshot files are unedited and large (you'll have to click on "load full resolution" on the website). I'm using MPC-HC and madvr to play the movies. Both files are remux. The 4K is in HDR, so it looks washed-out on the screenshot, but the color is fine on my viewing end. The 1080p is in SDR, hence the colors look normal.

1. Am I blind to not see a difference?
2. If there isn't a difference, then this isn't normal right?
3. Is anyone able to upload their screenshots of 4k vs 1080p?
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post #18 of 31 Old 07-04-2019, 04:17 PM
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Did you try asking in the 5050 thread?

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post #19 of 31 Old 07-04-2019, 04:40 PM
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Originally Posted by prometheusdt View Post
Since not everyone plays games and the games may have issues with rendering 4k, I took two screenshots of a movie:

https://lensdump.com/i/WF6J8K (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WF66oc (1080p)

The screenshot files are unedited and large (you'll have to click on "load full resolution" on the website). I'm using MPC-HC and madvr to play the movies. Both files are remux. The 4K is in HDR, so it looks washed-out on the screenshot, but the color is fine on my viewing end. The 1080p is in SDR, hence the colors look normal.

1. Am I blind to not see a difference?
2. If there isn't a difference, then this isn't normal right?
3. Is anyone able to upload their screenshots of 4k vs 1080p?
If you go into the menu and select "Image" and then on the next screen select "Image Enhancement" does it say 4k Enhancement is "On" ? If this got set to "Off" somehow then it would not do the pixel doubling and would show no more resolution than 1080P.


Have you tried to take pictures of extreme closeup so that you can make out individual pixels ? If the pixel shifter is active, you should not see really distinct pixels. If it is turned off, then you should see distinct square pixels and the grid of lines between them. Turn the setting above off and on so you can see the difference.


If the pixel shifter is "On" then it will try to enhance even a 1080P source, and maybe the Epson scaling is good enough to make the 4k source only very slightly better. If it is "Off", then of course they would look identical as the 4k source is simply down scaled to 1080P and will show no more resolution than a 1080P source.


It may seem clearcut that you a 1080P source and a 4k source appear very different, but as long as the pixel shifter as active, you are actually looking at a 1080P source first scaled to 8 million pixels and then downsampled to 4 million for display, while a 4k source is 8 million original pixels downsampled to 4 million for display. My 4k projector makes my 1080P sources look sharper than my 1080P projector but notably softer than 4k sources, and that is common. The difference is obviously going to be less on the Epson because it is only half-4k resolution.
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post #20 of 31 Old 07-04-2019, 06:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Did you try asking in the 5050 thread?
Yes. No response.
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post #21 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 02:15 AM
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I just got my first projector (Epson 5050ub) with a Silver Ticket 120" (STR-169120). I have Windows 10 text scaled to 250% if that makes any difference. My first reaction is that the texts are not very clear. As I type this from 12 feet away, the sharpness is equivalent to my 70" 1080p tv. It's nowhere near as crisp as my 70" 4K tv. After I loaded Destiny 2, I really couldn't tell much of a difference. Below are the comparison pictures with my iPhone X:
Scaling windows text to 250% isn't going to look ultra sharp as it's not a scale factor that's a perfect multiple. Your sharpest text will be 1920x1080 @ 100% or 200% DPI scaling. Or 3840x2160 at 200% DPI scaling. Desktop text is one of the main ways to see the massive deficiencies in an pixel shift type tech.

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While I understand that the 5050ub may be inferior to other projectors in terms of sharpness, that doesn't explain why there isn't a difference to the sharpness level when I switch resolution from 1080p to 4k. I'm not comparing it to other projectors, I'm comparing it to itself.

I went ahead and took 2 pictures of a different game with my camera (iPhone X) just in case Destiny 2 has a bug with resolution changes. To make sure I keep the variations as low as possible, I used a tripod and uploaded it to a site that doesn't compress the image. Below are the results:

https://lensdump.com/i/WPI3d9 (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WPIsio (1080p)
https://lensdump.com/i/WPI4M2
https://lensdump.com/i/WPIKav

Let me know if my eyes are bad, but those images are virtually identical. Because I'm new to projectors, I feel like I'm missing something here. Like there's a simple setting that I ignorantly forgot to turn on. Any troubleshooting ideas that you guys have? Either that or I need to consider doing an RMA with this thing.
Believe it or not, the e-shift's job isn't to make the image sharper. It's to clean up the image by eliminating the pixel gap. The JVC eshift was similar in this manner. It didn't really sharpen the image a ton either. It's not like the DLP shifting that actually provides 4K worth of addressable pixels. So yea your image is going to just look similar. It's a 1080p projector at heart. Give up on trying to benefit from 4K resolution on this projector. That's not in the cards here.

However, this can still benefit you in games. Because you cannot see the pixel gap, you may not be able to see the jaggies at 4K resolution in your game and therefore, you may be able to disable anti aliasing in the game at 4K. Give this a try. Since anti aliasing is a huge blur filter, disabling it will significantly increase sharpness. At 1080p you cannot do this because you'll see stair steps all over the place. The pixel shifting should hide this pretty well. Of course whether or not you can get away with this depends on the size of your screen, how close you sit while playing games etc.

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I am not a gamer but from what I have read true 4K games are very rare as most are just upscaled 1080p. Are you sure the game your using is native 4K? Compare a 4k video to the same video in 1080p and I bet you will see a difference. Ignore any comparison to a TV as they are just different animals entirely.
This is somewhat incorrect. Upscaling assumes that the game renders at 1080p then something upscales that to 4K. This is for sure not what's happening. Almost every game can render at 4K. If the game has an option to run at 3840x2160, it renders at 4K. It may not have 4K textures, but it will provide 4K sharpness in its rendering. Since everything's rendered on the fly in a modern 3D game, upping the resolution makes a huge difference.

Quote:
Originally Posted by prometheusdt View Post
Since not everyone plays games and the games may have issues with rendering 4k, I took two screenshots of a movie:

https://lensdump.com/i/WF6J8K (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WF66oc (1080p)
Unfortunately, the colorspace mismatch makes comparing these impossible
But, you're going to see far less difference in sharpness in a movie even if you had a native 4K projector here. So this is not going to be a good test. Stick to games for your comparisons it is much easier to see the benefits.

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1. 1080p x2 projectors or so called "Faux K" projectors (Epson, JVC E-shift models) that use pixel shifting to double their native 1080p resolution to around 4 million individually addressable pixels on screen.

2. 'True 4K' DLP projectors (BenQ, Optoma, Viewsonic, etc) which also use pixel shifting but are able to double or quadruple their native resolution to produce 8 million individually addressable pixels on screen.
Nice post! Do you happen to know if Faux K and True 4K use "fancy AI" algorithm to interpolate the pixels in 1080p resolution to produce "4K"? Or do they simply duplicate the pixels in 1080p resolution to create "4K"? I think the first approach is fast and can be implemented in real time while the second sounds dumb to me..
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post #23 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 03:46 AM
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If your ultimate intention is to watch text then the Epson isn’t the projector you want, for this a proper 4K projector is the ONLY answer, but if watching movies then the Epson is perfect for this as 12ft from a 120” is the equivalent to me watching my 100” at 10ft which I do.
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post #24 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 08:00 AM - Thread Starter
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Scaling windows text to 250% isn't going to look ultra sharp as it's not a scale factor that's a perfect multiple. Your sharpest text will be 1920x1080 @ 100% or 200% DPI scaling. Or 3840x2160 at 200% DPI scaling. Desktop text is one of the main ways to see the massive deficiencies in an pixel shift type tech.


Believe it or not, the e-shift's job isn't to make the image sharper. It's to clean up the image by eliminating the pixel gap. The JVC eshift was similar in this manner. It didn't really sharpen the image a ton either. It's not like the DLP shifting that actually provides 4K worth of addressable pixels. So yea your image is going to just look similar. It's a 1080p projector at heart. Give up on trying to benefit from 4K resolution on this projector. That's not in the cards here.

However, this can still benefit you in games. Because you cannot see the pixel gap, you may not be able to see the jaggies at 4K resolution in your game and therefore, you may be able to disable anti aliasing in the game at 4K. Give this a try. Since anti aliasing is a huge blur filter, disabling it will significantly increase sharpness. At 1080p you cannot do this because you'll see stair steps all over the place. The pixel shifting should hide this pretty well. Of course whether or not you can get away with this depends on the size of your screen, how close you sit while playing games etc.


This is somewhat incorrect. Upscaling assumes that the game renders at 1080p then something upscales that to 4K. This is for sure not what's happening. Almost every game can render at 4K. If the game has an option to run at 3840x2160, it renders at 4K. It may not have 4K textures, but it will provide 4K sharpness in its rendering. Since everything's rendered on the fly in a modern 3D game, upping the resolution makes a huge difference.


Unfortunately, the colorspace mismatch makes comparing these impossible
But, you're going to see far less difference in sharpness in a movie even if you had a native 4K projector here. So this is not going to be a good test. Stick to games for your comparisons it is much easier to see the benefits.


Finally figured out MPC has a screen capture option that takes in hdr. Below is 4K vs 1080p with the right color for comparison:

https://lensdump.com/i/2160p.WFphO0 (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WF66oc (1080p)

Besides 4k having better color due to hdr, they appear like they're literally identical in sharpness. I wish I can even say the 4k is a hair bit sharper. Projectorcentral.com and projectorreviews.com both claim that Epson's pixel shifting "isn’t truly as sharp as a single chip DLP (4K UHD) or a native 4K projector, but..they all look pretty close, thanks to image processing." Either they're both wrong (which I doubt), or something's not right on my end (my computer, software/hardware settings, or projector).

Below is the comparison as you requested between 4k game with antialiasing, 4k without, and 1080p with antialising:

https://lensdump.com/i/4k-antialiasing.WF72UD (4k antialiasing)
https://lensdump.com/i/4k-no-antialiasing.WF7AZq (4k without)
https://lensdump.com/i/1080p-antialiasing.WF7WsA (1080p antialiasing)

I'm not seeing much, if any difference. I'm okay with accepting that Epson's pixel shifting does nothing, but that doesn't explain projectorcentral, projectorreviews, and many people in the 5040 and 5050ub megapost that claims that they've compared side-by-side and there's only a small difference between native 4k and Epson's pixel shift. If they see a small difference between Epson and native 4k, I should be able to see a big difference between 4K and 1080p. I'll be absolutely happy even if there's a fraction's difference between 1080p vs 4k, but in my case, there's zero difference when watching movies and playing games. You mentioned that Epson doesn't make the image sharper, but just cleans up the pixel gap. Even if the 4K image was not sharper but only a tad bit cleaner, I'll be happy. The movie screenshot I provided doesn't look at any cleaner. If it does and my eyes are not looking at the right spot, please let me know.

The only wrench to throw into this problem is when I load up Youtube 4k video, I can see a difference between 4K and 1080p when changing the quality settings. Maybe youtube is doing some funky rendering on their end that would result in this?

I'm hoping someone comes up with other troubleshooting ideas that I can try. But if not, I guess my only option left is to have a professional calibration done, and then discuss with that person (since they've worked on hundreds of projectors) to see if my issue is normal or not?

Last edited by prometheusdt; 07-05-2019 at 08:47 AM.
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post #25 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 08:07 AM
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Is there a difference between 4K and 1080p?

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Originally Posted by toddwz View Post
Nice post! Do you happen to know if Faux K and True 4K use "fancy AI" algorithm to interpolate the pixels in 1080p resolution to produce "4K"? Or do they simply duplicate the pixels in 1080p resolution to create "4K"? I think the first approach is fast and can be implemented in real time while the second sounds dumb to me..


Epson’s ‘enhanced’ resolution and JVC’s e-shift are both interpolating a 4K image as they will accept a 4K source but then need to ‘throw away’ half the pixels before the image can be displayed. Early on, JVC did a better job of this but Epson appears to be catching up with their latest projectors.

There are two DLP True 4K solutions and both can reproduce 8.3 million pixels on screen but they go about it in slightly different ways. There is the larger, typically more expensive, .66” two-way-shift DMD and the smaller, typically less expensive, .47” four way shift DMD. The larger chip gets credit for being immensely sharp when paired with a quality lens. In some cases, reviewers have touted projectors equipped with this chip to actually appear as sharp or sharper than competing native 4K projectors. But the .66” chip does not produce a standard pixel matrix so some image processing is required. An example would be if you fed a projector equipped with the .66 DMd a 4K horizontal or vertical line test pattern (1 pixel width) the projector would not actually be able to render a straight line. The smaller .47” chip does produce a standard matrix and would be able to render a straight line on the above test. The smaller chip, however, having less mirrors and each mirror being tasked with producing 4 pixels means you get more pixel overlap and thus slightly less detail than the .66” is capable of producing.

A couple extra things to note here: all the 4K DLP projectors are single chip projectors. There are pros and cons to single chip but one of the advantages is single chip projectors are inherently very sharp as they are impervious to convergence errors. This helps the pixel shift DLPs to compete with a native solution which is generally considered the best. By contrast, all LCOS and 3LCD projectors (Sony, JVC and Epson) use three separate chips: one red, one green and one blue that overlap to produce the full range of color the projector is capable of. The advantage of 3 chip is you avoid the color separation possible in single chip designs but the disadvantage is all three panels need to be perfectly aligned to avoid convergence errors— which can soften the image. There are, obviously, other differences between the technologies that differentiate them further but I’m just speaking to resolution and detail/sharpness here.

And that brings me to one really important note: lens quality is the great equalizer. No matter how good your underlying tech the quality of your lens can make or break your image. More often than not, the quality of the lens will account for more of a difference in perceptible detail than even the tech being employed. Higher priced projectors will often have costlier lens which can give them an edge over lower priced models.
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post #26 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 10:07 AM - Thread Starter
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If you go into the menu and select "Image" and then on the next screen select "Image Enhancement" does it say 4k Enhancement is "On" ? If this got set to "Off" somehow then it would not do the pixel doubling and would show no more resolution than 1080P.


Have you tried to take pictures of extreme closeup so that you can make out individual pixels ? If the pixel shifter is active, you should not see really distinct pixels. If it is turned off, then you should see distinct square pixels and the grid of lines between them. Turn the setting above off and on so you can see the difference.


If the pixel shifter is "On" then it will try to enhance even a 1080P source, and maybe the Epson scaling is good enough to make the 4k source only very slightly better. If it is "Off", then of course they would look identical as the 4k source is simply down scaled to 1080P and will show no more resolution than a 1080P source.
Thank you for showing me how to visually distinguish between shifter being on/off. I was only able to turn 4k enhancement on/off within a game by first changing the in-game resolution to 1080p. On 4k resolution, the 4k enhancement option is grayed out. Others have said that this means it's already/automatically on and cannot be turned off if it's receiving 4k signal.

The thing I don't understand is when I play a movie in Windows 10 with MPC-HC and madvr, Epson's info screen shows the signal as 4k regardless of if my source is 4k or 1080p. I assume this is because my Windows's resolution is set at 4k, therefore the signal is 4k and the 1080p picture will simply stretch to match the 4k signal. But when I change Windows's resolution to 1080p, the info screen STILL shows as 4k signal on the desktop and when playing a 1080p source. How can this be?


Quote:
It may seem clearcut that you a 1080P source and a 4k source appear very different, but as long as the pixel shifter as active, you are actually looking at a 1080P source first scaled to 8 million pixels and then downsampled to 4 million for display, while a 4k source is 8 million original pixels downsampled to 4 million for display. My 4k projector makes my 1080P sources look sharper than my 1080P projector but notably softer than 4k sources, and that is common. The difference is obviously going to be less on the Epson because it is only half-4k resolution.
So if a 1080p source should look noticeably softer than 4k source, why does my 4k source look identical to 1080p? (Check out my new screenshots of Tom Cruise on the first post under "Edit 2"). There's zero difference between the two, and I'm using zero in its literal sense. Even though the Epson should only be half-4k, you would think that there should at least be a tiny, minute difference between that and 1080p.

Last edited by prometheusdt; 07-05-2019 at 10:19 AM.
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post #27 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 10:40 AM
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Is there a difference between 4K and 1080p?

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Thank you for showing me how to visually distinguish between shifter being on/off. I was only able to turn 4k enhancement on/off within a game by first changing the in-game resolution to 1080p. On 4k resolution, the 4k enhancement option is grayed out. Others have said that this means it's already/automatically on and cannot be turned off if it's receiving 4k signal.



The thing I don't understand is when I play a movie in Windows 10 with MPC-HC and madvr, Epson's info screen shows the signal as 4k regardless of if my source is 4k or 1080p. I assume this is because my Windows's resolution is set at 4k, therefore the signal is 4k and the 1080p picture will simply stretch to match the 4k signal. But when I change Windows's resolution to 1080p, the info screen STILL shows as 4k signal on the desktop and when playing a 1080p source. How can this be?









So if a 1080p source should look noticeably softer than 4k source, why does my 4k source look identical to 1080p? (Check out my new screenshots of Tom Cruise on the first post under "Edit 2"). There's zero difference between the two, and I'm using zero in its literal sense. Even though the Epson should only be half-4k, you would think that there should at least be a tiny, minute difference between that and 1080p.


First thing I would recommend is to get yourself some test patterns to test with. There is a suite of 4K HDR test patterns available free on this forum just do a search. You don’t need anything super fine but enough to get a repeatable static image that you can verify with certainty IS 4K. Then I’d take your camera and zoom in as close as you can get to the pixel structure. On the Epson there is a very apparent pixel gap while the projector is in 1080p (pixel shift off). That pixel gap will be significantly reduced when pixel shifting is turned on and you should see an almost stair step pattern. This should at the MINIMUM prove that the pixel shift is working and you don’t just have a defective projector.

Edit: almost forgot to link the test pattern suite.

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/139-d...2943380?page=1

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post #28 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 11:01 AM
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Regarding the 1080p desktop still saying 4K on the projector. On windows I found that I needed to change the resolution to 1080p via the nvidia control panel for it to show as 1080p on the projector.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prometheusdt View Post
Finally figured out MPC has a screen capture option that takes in hdr. Below is 4K vs 1080p with the right color for comparison:

https://lensdump.com/i/2160p.WFphO0 (4K)
https://lensdump.com/i/WF66oc (1080p)

Besides 4k having better color due to hdr, they appear like they're literally identical in sharpness. I wish I can even say the 4k is a hair bit sharper. Projectorcentral.com and projectorreviews.com both claim that Epson's pixel shifting "isn’t truly as sharp as a single chip DLP (4K UHD) or a native 4K projector, but..they all look pretty close, thanks to image processing." Either they're both wrong (which I doubt), or something's not right on my end (my computer, software/hardware settings, or projector).

Below is the comparison as you requested between 4k game with antialiasing, 4k without, and 1080p with antialising:

https://lensdump.com/i/4k-antialiasing.WF72UD (4k antialiasing)
https://lensdump.com/i/4k-no-antialiasing.WF7AZq (4k without)
https://lensdump.com/i/1080p-antialiasing.WF7WsA (1080p antialiasing)

I'm not seeing much, if any difference. I'm okay with accepting that Epson's pixel shifting does nothing, but that doesn't explain projectorcentral, projectorreviews, and many people in the 5040 and 5050ub megapost that claims that they've compared side-by-side and there's only a small difference between native 4k and Epson's pixel shift. If they see a small difference between Epson and native 4k, I should be able to see a big difference between 4K and 1080p. I'll be absolutely happy even if there's a fraction's difference between 1080p vs 4k, but in my case, there's zero difference when watching movies and playing games. You mentioned that Epson doesn't make the image sharper, but just cleans up the pixel gap. Even if the 4K image was not sharper but only a tad bit cleaner, I'll be happy. The movie screenshot I provided doesn't look at any cleaner. If it does and my eyes are not looking at the right spot, please let me know.

The only wrench to throw into this problem is when I load up Youtube 4k video, I can see a difference between 4K and 1080p when changing the quality settings. Maybe youtube is doing some funky rendering on their end that would result in this?

I'm hoping someone comes up with other troubleshooting ideas that I can try. But if not, I guess my only option left is to have a professional calibration done, and then discuss with that person (since they've worked on hundreds of projectors) to see if my issue is normal or not?
So on UHD content, they're probably right. Most people sit too far back to even benefit from 4K so the side-by-side between 1080p and 4K native is very small. So to them there's only a small difference between the 5040 and the native 4K. That's not because the 5040 is so great doing 4k but instead because on movie content, its already very hard to see the difference but when you're sitting too far back like most are, you just cant tell. That makes them think their Epson is great at 4K.

On games its a lot more noticeable. Try a game that has a lot of far drawing distance. You won't notice something in this game you're showing. It has almost no textures and the objects are all very big. You need a game that has a lot of textures, a lot of stuff on the screen, and perhaps a large draw distance. Where I notice 4K benefit in games is how much more detailed stuff is way off in the distance.

A couple games I noticed a ton of difference between 1080p and 4K were elder scrolls online (free) and star wars the old republic (also free). But again, you don't have a 4K projector so you probably won't notice much difference.

If you can be happy with your projector realizing it's just a 1080p projector that accepts 4K content as input, then I'd stop worrying and be happy with it. If not, you need to return it and get something that's actually 4K. I'd suggest a JVC NX5 at minimum but that's because I can't handle DLP's super bright greys for black.

Video: JVC RS4500 135" screen in pure black room no light, htpc nvidia 1080ti.
Audio: Anthem mrx720 running 7.1.4, McIntosh MC-303, MC-152, B&W 802d3 LR, B&W HTM1D3 center, B&W 805d3 surround, B&W 702S2 rear, B&W 706s2 x 4 shelf mounted for atmos, 2 sub arrays both infinite baffle: 4x15 fi audio running on behringer ep4000 + 4x12 fi audio running on 2nd ep4000.
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post #30 of 31 Old 07-05-2019, 08:26 PM
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There is nothing close to the Epson 5050 for the price, if you want to look at a text from a computer get a 4K machine and you will be on your merry way, and I am sure you will be a happy reader, your wallet may not be too happy though.

Do not steal, The powers that be do not like the competition.
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