I rarely slip into this forum from the CRT forum, but reading about the Panny 300 has me interested. The review on Projector Central says it's "blacks are black". Anyone care to comment compared with a CRT projector? THanks!
Projectorcentral writes its reviews and recommendations with the "average joe consumer" in mind, not hardcore videophiles. The panny ae300 has blacks that are as good as the best LCD's, but they are still quite gray. If you can, look at a fullscreen black signal on any decent 400:1 to 600:1 LCD monitor in a totally dark room, and that will give you a really good idea of what kind of blacks to expect.
OK I am one year removed from my trusty Sony 1252 CRT projector. I finally got off the fence last week and purchased the 300. My biggest concern was the CRT to LCD issue. If I had my choice, I would have purchased another CRT but I do not have the space or a dedicated room any longer. Now that I have the 300, I am very pleased with the unit. The first thing I noticed was how bright the unit was. I do not have total light control and it gives me a great picture. If I could do a side by side comparison of a properly calibrated Sony 1252 and my Panny, the sony would win but only by a slim margin. The black levels are the tie breaker in my opinion. The black levels on the panny are not bad, it 's just that they are not CRT quality. For the cost of this unit, the ease of maintenance, and the quality of picture, I am happy. I always hated reading threads where people use the words WOW and Amazed to described the picture but WOW I am Amazed with this thing. Sorry I could not help myself. I am sure the HS10 and others would have given me good results. I agonized over this decision for months and now that it is over, it was a very easy $2,000 to spend. Good luck
I've had my Sony 1272 for over three years now and love the image it produces, but would love to get something smaller and less noisy. I have a hush box that reduces a significant amount of the fan noise, but its still there.
Would you say the Panny produces as deep of a 3-dimensional image as your Sony did? The screenshots I've been looking at sure looks like it does.
JayF, look for posts by [Andrew Ballew] - he went from CRT to Panny 300 and back to CRT. He did rave about the Panny though, especially shadow details. I haven't had a CRT, but I've had both the Panny 300 and now the HS10 and I can tell you that the Panny beats the HS10 hands down with both black levels and shadow details.
I previously had a Barco 801s. The picture was awesome. Now we have the Panny 300u. The picture is also awesome. I have never tweaked the panny except when setting it up. I had to tweak the Barco every couple of weeks. Would not go back to CRT even for the greatest picture in the world. The panasonic suits us just fine. And we can take it camping for outdoor movies at the lake.
I would have to say that on one hand it does give me a better 3D image due to it's color saturation contrast and brightness. The image seems to pop off the screen a little better than my old CRT. The other hand is saying no due to the lack of definition in shadow detail. Again I hate to use the term "lack of definition" because the 300 handles shadow detail very well for an LCD projector but again it is not quite CRT level. The noise level is a non issue with the 300. If your 72 is anything like my 52 then you will love the sound or lack of coming from the 300. I also like not having to warm up the projector before I use it. Now all of my impressions of this projector are based on out of the box condition. I have not even began tweaking it yet. Once I do that, I am sure the image will get even better. I had some relatives over for a movie last weekend and they thought the image was much better than my 52. Unless you are a very picky videophile then I do not see how you can go wrong with the 300.
I have the 300 and HAD an NEC GP5000 which is a 9" CRT. the 5000 can often be purchase on ebay for below$1000.
The 300 does have a WOW factor. unfortunately the wow factor in any display device lasts about 2 seconds as compared to a hollywood feature which lasts 120 minutes. the 300 beats the 5000 in the WOW factor every time. it's brighter, punchier and more vibrant. But evaluating past that initial 2 seconds yields a much different result. What i'm driving at is that CRT, as least the one I had, walks all over the 300 when it comes to watching a feature. The CRT image is rock solid, artifact free, silky and filmlike. it's Immersive and closely approximates what you get in a theater. i have never felt that way with the 300. believe me, i wanted to love the 300 and say digital has caught CRT. but from my perspective, digital has a long long way to go.
it's worth noting howevre my crt was in a dedicated room with dark grey walls and total light control. it was also isf calibrated. it also weighed 210 lbs.
I have both a CRT maxivideo DMP3000dcx (7" sony CRT) and a new panny300 purchased to let my doughters play with it do not touching anymore my CRT. Well, a part the first impact, indeed at the first beginning the panny seems giving the WOW effect mention above, but comparing side by side there is no stories at all. please just try to compare both these sets with the same inputs on the same screen, then judge! The "filmlike" I am so familiar to appreciate watching a movie, disappear with the digital set. Then, I agreed with those explain that it is easyer to use but pls do not tell me that the quality is the same.
Let me also spend some words about the brightness. Who like to see a good movie with the lights fully on? In a dedicated cinema room these brightness difference disappeared, you can only measure them with a luxmeter, so why everybody speaks of lumens and lumens?
I think the key is whether or not you have a dedicated room. If I still had a dedicated room, I would go with the CRT hands down. Something else I did not mention is lifespan. My CRT had over 9000 hours on the original tubes. Lets see a digital do that. Now that I do not have a dedicated room, digital is clearly the way to go for my setup. I do not have total light control and my wife does not want a 200 pound beast hanging over her new couch and coffee table. (I get a new projector - she gets furniture) you know how that works.
For me : Dedicated room = CRT
Livingroom = Digital.
Regardless, I still do not think you will be displeased with the 300.
Thanks for all of your replies. This is the kind of feedback I was hoping for and really appreciate from this forum. I DO have a dedicated room and only 1400 hours on my CRT, so I think I'll stick with that for a while. But I have to admit it sure sounds like the digital technology is getting there... and the price is certainly right.
I have a Marquee 8000. I tried a the 300 for a weekend for SD television. Colors were vibrant. Image was good, however, the motion artifacts drove me nuts, especially being accustomed to the silky film like quality of the CRT. Be sure you can test drive whatever LCD/DLP you think you may want.
Finally saw a demo at lunch today. Glad I did. I suppose if I hadn't been spoiled with a CRT projector for the past 3 years I would have been more impressed, but the image seemed so flat. May have been the setup at the dealer, not sure. Also, unfair as it was, I brought along Dark City as test material. Big difference from what I was used to and what I could live with.
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