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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The PK301 has been out for some time now, the FAVI E3 is new, but is similarly spec'd to the PK301 (losing the HDMI, but gaining battery life and battery-lumens). All the action appears to be in the next size up (pocket, mini?) with the 3D 720 LED PJs. Is there any action in the pico class coming soon that brings either significantly higher brightness (100 lumens?), or 720p? Or have this class hit a plateau based on power consumption (i.e. if they either raised the brightness or resolution, the battery life would be unacceptably short for a pico... possibly due to the limited choices of LEDs and DMDs)?
 

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optoma has 2 720p a30- 100(i have only seen this and it looks pk 201ish ) and 300 lumen(ml300) a 200lm acer/dell a 200 lm viewsonic.there are a few others I have heard but will be droped(3 i know of) and some are dropping led (planned and current)lines altogether.



the 1080p pico will probably never see the light of day.The current crop are around 2/3 average the light output claimed.hard to cool larger led can be used like the led/lcd samsung but also show how bad it can go like thr cre led/lcd.I dont think we will see any hd 1000 lumen pjs ,not bright enough for board room/classroom and not portable, IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
any more details on the Optoma picos? Never heard about the A30 before (size? battery powered/life?)... is the ML300 a pico? projectorcentral lists it as 2 lbs... seems unlikely.
 

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that should have read "a 30-100 lumen" only seen it-gona be made by young rebranded optoma- the ml300 looks qumi size,to me anyways the line is blurry pico/pocket.the qumi is tiny and dosnt have a brick.
 

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forgot to add the ml300 looks qumi size
 

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A few survey questions about pico projectors that I would appreciate if anyone has some time could answer. I will use this information for product planning and possible commercial gain (at least I'm upfront about it)


How much would you pay for a projector if it could do


a. 20 lumens and is the size of an iphone

b. 50 lumens and is the size of 2 iphones stacked on top of another

c. 200 lumens and is the size of 6 iphones with 2 side by side and the thickness is 3 iphones.


Also, how would you rate the importance of each type of feature if you had to pay extra for it


1. VGA (+$5)

2. Composite (+$0)

3. YCbCr (+$0)


4. HDMI (+$10)

5. Displayport (+$10)

6. MHL (+$5)


7. Show pictures from a USB Stick (+$10)

8. Show video from a USB stick (+$20)

9. Have on board storage like a USB Stick (+$10)


10. Stereo Sound (+$5)

11. Surround Sound (+$20)

12. 3D Video support(+$100)



Thank you all
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by anomaly123 /forum/post/20864936


How much would you pay for a projector if it could do


a. 20 lumens and is the size of an iphone

b. 50 lumens and is the size of 2 iphones stacked on top of another

c. 200 lumens and is the size of 6 iphones with 2 side by side and the thickness is 3 iphones.

a. effectively, a) has been done... not interested... too dim.

b. PK301 is close enough that this has been done as well... only interested if the battery life was longer or the resolution higher... even then, 50l is still too low, I think to part me from my money.

c. This seems to be smaller than the acer/optoma clone, so there would be some value in that...


the smaller size would be beneficial IF it could be battery powered and had reasonable battery life (60mins). I may be an oddball, but I'm waiting for two projectors... one that is LED, portable and can be run off battery power for the length of a typical movie (smaller the better), has 720p and is 100 lumens or better. I'll pay $400-$500 for this. The second is a replacement for my infocus x10... it will be LED, 1080p, 1000 ANSI lumens or better, 3D/HDMI1.4, and size will not matter (dependability and noise will be more important). I'll pay up to $2K for this one depending on specs, and will wait for it, as my X10 is serving me well for now.

Quote:
1. VGA (+$5)

2. Composite (+$0)

3. YCbCr (+$0)

4. HDMI (+$10)

5. Displayport (+$10)

6. MHL (+$5)

7. Show pictures from a USB Stick (+$10)

8. Show video from a USB stick (+$20)

9. Have on board storage like a USB Stick (+$10)

10. Stereo Sound (+$5)

11. Surround Sound (+$20)

12. 3D Video support(+$100)

answering the above for a pico/mini PJ...

1-5. only HDMI (or mini HDMI) required

6. Since I do not know what MHL is, I'll say no thank you.

7-11: only playback from memory card (video and pictures) is required... will not pay extra for the others.

12. IF the 3D is 720p, supports HDMI 1.4, AND the ANSI brightness in 3D mode is 50 lumens or better, I'll kick in $100... otherwise, I'll skip 3d for my pico to save a few bucks.
 

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Thanks for taking the time for the detailed reply, much appreciated. I feel that current market prices for pico projectors is too expensive to get a wider audience, hence the question of how much people are willing to pay. As an example, a 50 lumen projector like the Optoma PK-301 is around $399, and something that is around 20 lumens like the PK-120 is around $299. My mother or grandmother or any other Joe sixpack out there would probably not part with that kind of money for what is on offer.


Back to something more realistic, there are limits imposed by physics that dictate how much brightness can be squeezed into a given volume and power budget. Lets say the state of the art in battery power without carry something like a car battery is 50 lumens now, this will probably improve to a maximum of 100 lumens in the next 5 years. Problem is its always too little too late. Something achievable within a certain budget now, or next year is much better than something that will be achieved in 5 years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougri /forum/post/20865420


a. effectively, a) has been done... not interested... too dim.

b. PK301 is close enough that this has been done as well... only interested if the battery life was longer or the resolution higher... even then, 50l is still too low, I think to part me from my money.

c. This seems to be smaller than the acer/optoma clone, so there would be some value in that...



the smaller size would be beneficial IF it could be battery powered and had reasonable battery life (60mins). I may be an oddball, but I'm waiting for two projectors... one that is LED, portable and can be run off battery power for the length of a typical movie (smaller the better), has 720p and is 100 lumens or better. I'll pay $400-$500 for this.



The second is a replacement for my infocus x10... it will be LED, 1080p, 1000 ANSI lumens or better, 3D/HDMI1.4, and size will not matter (dependability and noise will be more important). I'll pay up to $2K for this one depending on specs, and will wait for it, as my X10 is serving me well for now.



answering the above for a pico/mini PJ...

1-5. only HDMI (or mini HDMI) required

6. Since I do not know what MHL is, I'll say no thank you.

7-11: only playback from memory card (video and pictures) is required... will not pay extra for the others.

12. IF the 3D is 720p, supports HDMI 1.4, AND the ANSI brightness in 3D mode is 50 lumens or better, I'll kick in $100... otherwise, I'll skip 3d for my pico to save a few bucks.
 

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One feature the Optoma PK301 has that is very nice is a battery mode (20 lumens) and a ac/dc adapter mode (50 lumens). This is something every pico should have IMO. If the LEDs and circuitry can handle the current and heat, why not get that extra bit of performance; or the contrary, have a battery saving mode?



I'm a big fan of Microvision's pico laser projectors, the tech is still advancing but it's hard not to smile when you see the color gamut and native infinite on/off contrast. Hopefully next year's green laser diodes will reduce speckle to an acceptable level, and make laser light sources more affordable and popular for other companies.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisyphus
One feature the Optoma PK301 has that is very nice is a battery mode (20 lumens) and a ac/dc adapter mode (50 lumens). This is something every pico should have IMO. If the LEDs and circuitry can handle the current and heat, why not get that extra bit of performance; or the contrary, have a battery saving mode?
Disclaimer: I am not related in any way to the companies mentioned in my post below. Comments below are from my perspective alone.


The "small" projector product has progressed a little more in the lab since the release of the PK301. For the same power budget as the PK301, it would be possible to get roughly 30~40 lumens in battery mode, and when power is externally supplied and the LEDs are maxed out, 80~100 lumens would be possible. This is of course on some unreleased product that someone might release someday



The million dollar question is, would it be attractive enough to get the attention of the average joe to buy such a product if this were to sell for the same price as the PK301 is selling now, ie. $349~$399. How about $299? How about $199?


If the average joe is not going to buy into such a concept, then there will be no commercial incentive to further R&D efforts. Shrinking a PK301 into something that can fit into a cellphone will then probably not happen for many many years to come.


Replies from the informed crowd here on AVS seem to suggest people don't mind a slightly larger "small" projector in the 2011/2012 timeframe. ie Qumi sized or smaller. The projector must be able to deliver a lumen number over a critical threshold to be useful. This looks to be around 50 lumens. Battery powered is an important, but seems like a secondary concern when compared to the lumens output.


There have been a lot of adventurous and in my opinion experimental products in the world of "small" projectors. You can see products out there from the likes of Optoma, 3M, Microvisiosn, AAXA, Nikon Cameras, Sony DVs and many no name brands ranging from keychain size to much larger that deliver 5~100 lumens. There is probably a magical mix of fairy dust that can ensure some kind of commercial success to drive further R&D.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisyphus
I'm a big fan of Microvision's pico laser projectors, the tech is still advancing but it's hard not to smile when you see the color gamut and native infinite on/off contrast. Hopefully next year's green laser diodes will reduce speckle to an acceptable level, and make laser light sources more affordable and popular for other companies.
Any talk about Microvision that puts them in any kind of negative light opens up a whole can of worms with the fans, but I'll do it anyway



When a product's success hinges on the sole advancment of one technology controlled by an outside party, the product is destined to fail. In Microvision's case, this is the direct green laser that they constantly claim will be the second coming and solve all their problems. Turns out they can already use a double pumped green laser, but why hasn't this raised any interested adopters among the serious players (I'm talking about camera makers, cellphone makers, tablet makers, etc that push multi million units per month)


The reason Microvision ended up in this "hole" is because the company founders were probably MEMS scanning mirror guys. Pride dictates that when you're a scanning mirror guy, you just don't bring yourself to use competing array technologies like DLP, LCD, LCOS, you name it. Also, using mems scanning technology limits their choice of light source to just 1 subtype (single mode) in an already niche technology (lasers). Microvision's technology will never be able to be adapted to LEDs or other light sources that doesn't appear to be a point light source. The technology roadmap is a dead end if the laser people don't deliver.


Of course, even if the laser supply problems are solved, the next thing would be the eye safety problems inherent with lasers. Having a scanning class 2 laser device that is projecting focused beams of laser out into open air would be a terrible idea around children. Imagine the consequences when a curious kid looks into the lens of a scanning laser projector. Medical science can't repair retinas with blackspots on them. Nasty stuff.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by anomaly123 /forum/post/20875820


Any talk about Microvision that puts them in any kind of negative light opens up a whole can of worms with the fans, but I'll do it anyway

Hehe, yes there are a few zealots out there. It's ok, I'm not one of "them".



From what I've read, 20-25 lumens is the safety ceiling for laser-scanning 720p, and 30 lumens for 1080p. I really love scanning mirrors, it's sort of a resurrection of what made CRT's so great. Infinite native on/off contrast, organic spots of light (versus hard edged pixels) that creates an incredibly smooth, film-like image, nice motion, etc.


Definitely with frequency doubled lasers Microvision was stuck paying whatever Corning or Osram wanted to charge, but with direct green diodes there should be sufficient competition with 5+ manufacturers. Plus the cost of direct green lasers is around 20% that of the green SHG laser.


From the beginning Microvision stated that the accessory projector "showwx" was a proof of concept device, and a means of drawing interest in the company. With Pioneer now developing the new laser engine, for use in their automobile HUD, unless the 2012 accessory laser projector becomes profitable, it will probably be the last projector produced by Microvision. Other companies may integrate the new laser engine into their own projector designs, cellphones, etc., and Microvision will return to research and devlopment, rather than direct manufacturing and sales. And having such a tiny projector, they still have the best chance of being embedded in a phone IMO.


I do wish there was a way to make scanning MEMS work with LED. I don't care if you have to focus a lens. The idea of a speckle-free 50+ lumen scanned image would be sooo nice.



Also one application Microvision hasn't explored is to use their scanning MEMS + laser on a phosphor, just as CRTs did but without the electron gun. The lasers could be safely sealed from the user, have higher lumen output, no speckle, and this could work both as a television set and projection display. So, there are still plenty of applications for Microvision's laser scanning engine. I just hope they find a good application so they can be successful and continue developing cool stuff.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by anomaly123 /forum/post/20875820


The million dollar question is, would it be attractive enough to get the attention of the average joe to buy such a product if this were to sell for the same price as the PK301 is selling now, ie. $349~$399. How about $299? How about $199?


If the average joe is not going to buy into such a concept, then there will be no commercial incentive to further R&D efforts. Shrinking a PK301 into something that can fit into a cellphone will then probably not happen for many many years to come.

Unless I had to have a battery operated, portable projector, I wouldn't get the PK301. I'd get the Acer k11 (200 lumens) that is selling for less than the PK301, at $340. I've actually owned both projectors. The improvements the Acer K11 offered are: 1. brighter 2. better color balance, nicer overall image quality 3. fewer rainbow artifacts.


The primary weakness of the Acer K11 is the screen door effect due to the lower resolution (The Optoma PK301 shared this weakness as well). One other area both of the projectors could use improvement is fan noise. All of these pico projectors have tiny, high rpm fans. If there is any way you could install a larger, slower moving fan, that would really lower the fan noise.


So I think to not only be competitive, but actually successful, you would want:


1. brightness

2. Nice image quality, good color balance

3. 720p resolution chip (or maybe a 480p chip with high pixel density, like LCOS rather than DLP)

4. faster led cycling (fewer rainbow artifacts)

5. Quieter fans

6. And of course either a competitive or lower price
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisyphus /forum/post/20878165


From what I've read, 20-25 lumens is the safety ceiling for laser-scanning 720p, and 30 lumens for 1080p. I really love scanning mirrors, it's sort of a resurrection of what made CRT's so great. Infinite native on/off contrast, organic spots of light (versus hard edged pixels) that creates an incredibly smooth, film-like image, nice motion, etc.

:

Edward Buckley of Light Blue Optics fame wrote up a few interesting papers that just so happens to be publically available. From his calculations, it seems focused laser scanning projectors would be pretty limited in brightness.

Eye‐safety analysis of current laser‐based scanned‐beam projection systems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisyphus /forum/post/20878165


Definitely with frequency doubled lasers Microvision was stuck paying whatever Corning or Osram wanted to charge, but with direct green diodes there should be sufficient competition with 5+ manufacturers. Plus the cost of direct green lasers is around 20% that of the green SHG laser.

Soraa, Nichia and Osram are leading at the moment, and it looks one of them will deliver first. Everyone is still working out the details to get a green with slightly longer wavelength.The industry has been stuck around the 530nm point for a while now, and this gives a green that is not quite right, but probably good enough if it were really cheap. My opinion is that a green laser will not be cheaper than an equivalent LED in 2012 or even 2013, 2014/2015 is more reasonable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisyphus /forum/post/20878165


With Pioneer now developing the new laser engine, for use in their automobile HUD, unless the 2012 accessory laser projector becomes profitable, it will probably be the last projector produced by Microvision.

Pioneer is a good candidate since they could charge a lot of money for an aftermarket HUD, but its unlikely it will be standard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisyphus /forum/post/20878165


Other companies may integrate the new laser engine into their own projector designs, cellphones, etc., and Microvision will return to research and devlopment, rather than direct manufacturing and sales. And having such a tiny projector, they still have the best chance of being embedded in a phone IMO.

Microvision is burning through about 10 million every quarter. By the time the direct green lasers are actually available, I think they wouldn't be around anymore. They need to stop losing millions a month before any more cool stuff appears



I'm waiting to see if their 720P engine sees the light of day in the next 6 months or so. CES or Cebit in early 2012 will be quite a critical time for them. Everyone else is moving onto some form of 720P in 2012 and if they aren't there, they will fall behind in specification.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sisyphus /forum/post/20878165


So I think to not only be competitive, but actually successful, you would want:


1. brightness

2. Nice image quality, good color balance

3. 720p resolution chip (or maybe a 480p chip with high pixel density, like LCOS rather than DLP)

4. faster led cycling (fewer rainbow artifacts)

5. Quieter fans

6. And of course either a competitive or lower price

1. Crawling upwards


2. This is a given

3. 720P in 2012 for the majority of players

4. Possible for DLP, unlikely for LCD or LCOS

5. Depends on specifications and tradeoffs with projector size

6. As with all good things in life, you get to pick 2 out of 3, Quality, Cost, Performance
 

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those little lcos pjs are out there(I have the aaxa m2 1024x768) and there are a handfull of 720p like the isival
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by eat meat /forum/post/20880731


those little lcos pjs are out there(I have the aaxa m2 1024x768) and there are a handfull of 720p like the isival

These units are a bit long in the tooth. The M2 and isival are both 100+ lumen units, but both only run at 180 fps, which is equivalent to a single speed color wheel. The M2 also uses analog LCOS, so its not a digital display technology.


The reason why they are running slow is a bit complex, but the important take away is they will not be improving in frame rate. There will be a lot of color break up, or rainbow effect for fast moving scenes.


Without knowning the technical details, do you think the M2 or the isival is good value for money? What kind of improvments do you think would make them killer products?


Thanks
 

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Just leave pico biz to apple, & start rebadging those CASIO hybrids... Overlap 2 projectors or use wobulation for cinemascope 3d 120hz per eye & stuff.


You have no idea how overrated FullHD is among gamer kids... Start talking about 2560 whatever, profit.


Oh & maybe ditch the phosphor wheel for quantum dot wheel, sounds way better.
 

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the m2 was king in led resolution(1024x768) when i got it the the isival came along at 720p(800cr tho) but the casios green slims came along and I got a 230 and 240 and kind of makes all the low lumen pjs a non starter after the hands on are starting to come out. I was looking for a 720p bulb less 3d pj will probably get a HD m casio for around 800$ for big and bright 3d.1080p and some cms maybe a iris is all thats missing.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gain3 /forum/post/20885338


Just leave pico biz to apple, & start rebadging those CASIO hybrids... Overlap 2 projectors or use wobulation for cinemascope 3d 120hz per eye & stuff.


You have no idea how overrated FullHD is among gamer kids... Start talking about 2560 whatever, profit.


Oh & maybe ditch the phosphor wheel for quantum dot wheel, sounds way better.

The pico business is the only potentially exciting area left for the serious players. Everyone wants in on huge shipping volumes with mass market appeal. Niche markets are usually a curiosity from the perspective of consumer electronics. Doesn't mean niche markets are not profitable, just means they are not very exciting.


Its interesting that you bring up Casio. Someone could probably rig up what the videophiles want, but it certainly won't be a big name familiar to the average joe.


I've done some analysis of Casio's architecture and concluded that if they were to shrink their technology down into something smaller, say 500 lumens, they'd still need to sell the product at $599 for it to be worth their while. Paying $599 is certainly excellent value considering you'd get close to 500 real lumens as compared to the ML500, K330, or the Qumi that don't get anywhere near 500 lumens.


The real problem with $599 is that it is a niche market price tag. For mass market appeal, the projector would need to sell for under $299, preferably lower. So while Casio could potentially release a 500 lumen killer product and go steal market share from Optoma, Vivitek or Acer, they wouldn't make the overall market pie larger (ok, maybe a bit larger, but slowly)


So I guess this ends up to be a race on how much stuff the consumer electronics people can deliver into the market given an upper limit of $299 MSRP


Phosphor is still where its at, Quantum dots are still unproven


Quote:
Originally Posted by eat meat /forum/post/20885338


the m2 was king in led resolution(1024x768) when i got it the the isival came along at 720p(800cr tho) but the casios green slims came along and I got a 230 and 240 and kind of makes all the low lumen pjs a non starter after the hands on are starting to come out. I was looking for a 720p bulb less 3d pj will probably get a HD m casio for around 800$ for big and bright 3d.1080p and some cms maybe a iris is all thats missing.

A 1080P native DLP projector will remain expensive for the time being, and will probably not become cheap enough for mass market adoption for a long long time to come. A color mixing CMS costs quite a bit of money to implement, but I guess it may not matter for the videophile. An Iris is not needed when running with a LED or laser, the iris's function can be exactly reproduced by the use of dynamic dimming of the LED/Laser and some video processing.
 
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