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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Managed to pick up a Sanyo PLV-1080HD on clearance for a stellar price, $720 (original msrp $1600). I tossed in a 4 year service plan that includes a bulb for $200, leaving my total under $1k. This is the same as a Z700.


Thing is, I've been waiting on it to arrive as it was the last one available in the area; the longer I wait the more doubts I have.


I am putting it into a bright space, there are skylights, but there are blinds I can pull to cover those. As I don't have those blinds yet I worry I'll still have a fair amount of ambient light. As I understand it, my throw distance between 13-15' should still be fine with ambient light. Also, given my 9-5, chances are I won't often be using it during the day (but would like the option).


But still, the longer it takes to get here, the more I wonder if a more recent model (non-DLP) PJ would give me a better picture for the money.


Thoughts? Other LCD pj's for under $1k?
 

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I think it deserves a shot.


I played with one of these at a BB a few weeks ago. Not great light control at all, low even negative gain screen and it impressed me decently enough.



You got a real good bargain, enjoy!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by fourtytwoinch /forum/post/18148242


Where did you find a bestbuy that still had one of those projectors? Just stumble of it?

Literally a shot in the dark. Was on a different end of town and was hoping to nab an Epson on clearance in Best Buy as I saw one about a month prior and foolishly passed on it.


Point of reference though - they didn't actually have it, got the last one in the entire region from a store in Wheeling, WV. But it is the only store I've seen with that PJ on the shelf.


It's been about a 3 week wait so far though.
 

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I have the Z700 and am very pleased with it, but only after some adjustments. See the Z700 Tweaks thread, especially the posts near the end. If you can muster up the courage to do the service menu tweak, you won't be disappointed - certainly not for the money you spent.
 

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My 1080-HD does fairly well in non-direct ambient light. For best results you will of course want to run the bulb on full power. In the dark you can easily use low lamp mode. If your skylights let direct light onto your screen you will not be happy. Use a gray screen to help dark images, as they suffer the most with ambient light. All things considered I have to say that I am very pleased with the 1080-HD's ambient light performance. Give it a shot, and like hms173 said check out the tweak thread.


What size screen are you going with?
 

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I'm actually on the other side of the fence on this one. I too picked one up at BB when they hit $720 the end of last year. In my setup with a 106" High Power screen in complete darkness, I thought it looked very disappointing. Coming from my 720p Mitsubishi it had no 1080p "Wow" factor that I was expecting. Worse sharpness than the Mits, and black levels that just weren't acceptable to me. Everything also seem to have a slight yellowish tint I couldn't seem to get rid of. I was kind of stuck because I could notice the smoother resolution of the Sanyo but the color/black levels of the Mits were much better, and I wasn't happy with either. Luckily I ended up returning it with no restocking fee and finding the Epson a couple hours away, and that gave me the 1080p pop I was hoping for. I know others like it, just giving you my experience.
 

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Before doing the service menu tweak I'd have agreed with Ikari W. - rather washed-out blacks in all but Dynamic mode, but then everything had a greeny yellowishness that was not pleasing at all. I didn't like any of the presets except Natural and that had the worst blacks of all.


If you go into the service menu and change one item you can get black probably as dark as it's going to get. You also have to adjust brightness down in the user menu using a pluge pattern from something like DVE or Spears & Munsil or it will still be too washed-out.


My conclusions? Out of the box it's just so so. But after a little tweaking it's like a different projector.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Didn't consider the HD20 due to it being DLP. I'm fairly sensitive to the rainbow effect.


I'm comfortable doing a service menu tweak, and have read up on it a little bit. One thing that doesn't seem clear is whether you can tweak away the green/yellow tint problem you mentioned or if that was just an issue you had with out of the box settings that can be fixed.


As for lighting, nothing should be directly hitting the screen, especially as I can/will use blinds or find a blackout method for the skylights. I think someone mentioned IKEA having something available. The skylights already have the hardware for a vinyl roller blind. It's a finished attic and the lights are on the sloped ceiling right about my head height, so closing off light should be easy.


Screen size will be between 90-100" as I haven't determined a permanent mounting solution as of yet. We are keeping the space as a spare bedroom as well with a very comfy futon. I will have the projector on a cart. Once I set it up I plan on marking the carpet with a little tape and rolling it out of the way when necessary.
 

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Only the Living and Dynamic preset modes look greenish. But they also have contrast way too high and too much edge enhancement. I stay away from them.


Brilliant Cinema and Creative Cinema are both too reddish. Otherwise Brilliant Cinema is pretty good. Creative Cinema has contrast way too low and just looks dull.


Natural preset mode is the most neutral and that's what I started with. Colors don't seem tinted one way or another. But Natural has the worst black level and looks washed out unless you do the service menu tweak.


I actually used all the presets as starting points and saving each with their own adjustments to User 1 thru 5 - Brilliant Cinema to User 1, Creative Cinema to User 2, etc. I do all my viewing using User 3 which started from Natural.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Glad I didn't cancel the order. Picked up the PJ on Saturday. Projecting onto a light-beige colored wall, so didn't have high hopes. It looks ridiculously good considering the current application/environment.


It's far from perfect but I see real potential with the service menu tweak, a real screen, and user adjusted calibrations with test patterns.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Might have an issue with my VGA port. Couldn't find a cable to swap out and see if that was the problem but I'm keeping my fingers crossed.


I thought my xbox was dying until I swapped it back to component cables.

FWIW this projector does appear to accept 1080p over component (at least for the xbox 360 menu), pleasant surprise.



Tweaking/Calibrating is going to be fun on this, seems like all of the elements of a good picture are present, it just needs to be tuned in.
 

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You can't just throw up a projector, dial in a few tweaks you found on the net and seriously talk about the performance being amazing, disappointing, washed out or any other adjective. Without proper calibration using a colorimeter, you are just shooting in the dark, hoping it projects something that looks half realistic. When your car isn't running properly, do you just open the hood and pull a few plugs out and rearrange them, hoping that will help? You already know it won't because a car is a precision machine; so is a projector.


If you are going to spend thousands on a projector, then a few hundred on a long lasting colorimeter to calibrate gamma, color and gray scale properly is the least you should do. The colorimeter will last through several projectors and is a good investment for your long term enjoyment.
 

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Calibration just isn't what it once was...... I guess I consider myself out of the calibration camp in recent times.


These days, the people in charge of the transfers to media have to much hand in the final color balance. Content from different broadcasters both over the air and cable have vast differences.


I have to admit, I used to have my displays calibrated. But anymore? I just don't really see the point.



My CBS affiliate is way off from my NBC as from my FOX for example.



It just seems so all over the place anymore. But this was a bargain 1080p projector, I don't see many people going beind the tweaks, I don't see many even doing the tweaks in all honesty.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JOHNnDENVER /forum/post/18210141


Calibration just isn't what it once was...... I guess I consider myself out of the calibration camp in recent times.


These days, the people in charge of the transfers to media have to much hand in the final color balance. Content from different broadcasters both over the air and cable have vast differences.


I have to admit, I used to have my displays calibrated. But anymore? I just don't really see the point.



My CBS affiliate is way off from my NBC as from my FOX for example.



It just seems so all over the place anymore. But this was a bargain 1080p projector, I don't see many people going beind the tweaks, I don't see many even doing the tweaks in all honesty.

It's very true that broadcast media is often horribly out of color balance however not all channels are like that and not all TV material is of the same low quality. Certainly some DVDs and bluray can be very good. Not calibrating because the lowest common denominator is very poor, stands to rob you of the good times when such media excells.


Having calibrated my lowly infocus X1, Optoma H31 and H79, I can attest that calibration can make a huge difference with the right colors and gamma dialed in. Having spent years using DVE to "calibrate", I was shocked how far off my "guessing" was. It also surprised me how important just a few notches in the RGB gains and cuts can be. You can not do a good job by eye because the eye sees color relative to the surrounding colors and so is easily fooled - you need an objective observer like a colorimeter.


I don't have a problem if someone is willing to live with orange faces or greenish sky, but to get on here and complain that their projector is washed out, or has horrible color, is useless to those looking for advice. At least realize that most projectors have the ability to shine on the best media, if only you would calibrate using a colorimeter.
 
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