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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello Everyone, I am brand new here and hoping to learn from all of you. I recently lost my Toshiba 56" TW HD set after 4 years (it all of a sudden decided not to work anymore) Over the last several years I noticed that the projectors have really come down in price and I would like to put together a projector system this time around. I have a room which I have dedicated to be the home theater. It is 19' by 12' and it has a 8' ceiling. I've been doing some homework over the last few weeks and not sure which directioin to go in. A friend of mine has a Mitsubishi HC 900 which looked pretty good but it didnt knock me out. I don't see any threads about that particular model so I'm guessing its not one of the better choices. My current target price for the projector is to try and stay under 5k, i know i will need additional funds for the screen and htpc. I was thinking that a 1080p projector was the way to go but after reading a few articles on the net, I got the impression that would be overkill for the current technology. Is this article accurate with its info in recommending shying away from 1080p?


(ack, because its my first post it wont let me post urls, sorry I'm not able to post links yet)




I ran across some info on the Toshiba MT800 which is a 1080p projector and it sells for 9k but also noticed that it is also sold as the Infocus Screenplay 7205 which is only 5k. Is it true that these are identical projectors only differance is the name?






Would you recommend a projector like that for a first time home theater noob or do you think there might be something better for me to go with?


Thank you very much in advance for any guidance or advice you can share!


John
 

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Hi, John!


You're off to a good start in looking around, but it appears that you may be confusing 720p projectors (which have 1280x720 resolution), with 1080p projectors (which have 1920x1080 resolution). There are only a handful of 1080p projectors available, which start at street prices beyond $20,000 and go up from there. The Toshiba and Infocus units you mention are 720p projectors.


Fortunately both of the units you describe are available at street prices that are far below $5K. I apologize that I'm not the right person to ask about the best current DLP values, so others will have to help you there. However, I do believe that recent 720p DLPs are a very appropriate choice for folks that are new to home theater - you're on the right track!


Good luck in your search!


Best Regards,

MarkF
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply Mark!


Wow, thats quite a bit of differance in resolution. I see why the differance in price. So even though the projector can do 1080p its not considered a true 1080p projector because it can't do 1920 X 1080?


From some of the research I've been doing, I've come accross threads in which people have said they are able to create a home theater that rivals there local cineplex and some that say its very easy to surpass the quality. Is it possible to do that with the projectors in my price range? Or is that from the projectors in that $20,000 dollar and up category?


Thats great that you can find those 2 I mentioned for far below $5,000. Where is the best place to buy this type of equipment? I buy all my computer gear from newegg , is there a company like that for home theater gear?


Thanks again for the help!!


John
 

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Hi, John!


Ah! Now I understand the source of the confusion. A signal is called 1080p (for progressive) when it has a resolution of 1920x1080, and is sent with a full 60 frames per second. The projectors that you're pointing at (like most) don't accept this, they accept 1080i (for interlaced), which is the highest resolution broadcast HDTV signal. 1080i sends alternate half-screen images 60 times/second, repainting the entire screen 30 times/second. That helps to clarify 1080i and 1080p signals.


Next, just because a projector can accept 1080i doesn't mean that it can display all of 1080i! A projector is known as a 720p projector only if it can display a resolution of about 1280x720. In other words, it has the ability to individually control that many individual picture elements (pixels). It is the display resolution that determines the projector type, not the signal input capability. It makes sense when you think about it. You could have a 640x480 VGA projector that also accepts 1080i, but it's never going to be able to display any more than about 15% of the source material! True 1080p projectors display 100% of the source material in a 1080i or 1080p input signal, and they're particularly expensive largely because they are low-volume, "specialist" or "enthusiast" machines.


Just because you can't afford to buy into that rarified realm doesn't mean that you can't get a fabulous image! Absolutely, by choosing your equipment carefully (particularly with advice from the folks on this forum), and spending the time to get it set up properly, you can definitely build a home theater that'll rival your local cinema!


As far as places to buy, there really aren't any huge "supercenter" like shops along the lines of Newegg. However, my favorite place to buy gear is right here! Talk to the folks at avscience.com, the premier supporters of the AVS Forum!


Good Luck!

MarkF
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi Mark,


Thanks for the explanation on 1080i/1080p. One thing that confuses me is in the specs of this projector. Can you look at this link, under compatibility it says that it is 1035i, 1080p, 1080i, 720p, 576p, 576i. Is this a true 1080p for 4,999? or is this not what it seems? I see that its max resolution is 1280 x 1024 so I remember you mentioning that true 1080p is 1920 x 1080. So what would this be classified as?


http://www.projectorcentral.com/InFo...nPlay_7205.htm


Thanks for taking the time to answer this question.
 

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Under Display options you can read:
Native: 1280x720 Pixels

That is the resolution of the projector.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Kranthos
From some of the research I've been doing, I've come accross threads in which people have said they are able to create a home theater that rivals there local cineplex and some that say its very easy to surpass the quality. Is it possible to do that with the projectors in my price range? Or is that from the projectors in that $20,000 dollar and up category?
At that level the limit is not the projector but the source material. You can't make anything better than the source. Obviously film has a much higher resolution and color information than SD and HD source material.
 

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Hi, John!


That is a fairly rare beast, in the sense that it's a 720p projector that will accept 1080p. However, as HTPCFan suggests, this is a 720p projector, plain and simple. In a test, the image this projector would show from a 720p source would be essentially identical to that from the same material encoded at 1080p, so the 720p designation is quite appropriate.


Again, if I sold you a light bulb that "accepted 1080p", it'd still be a 1x1 projector! ;) Only if I had an array of 1920x1080 light bulbs that switched very quickly, indeed, could I sell this as a "1080p projector"!


[Hmmm. If those were 60 watt light bulbs, my theoretical 1080p projector would consume more than 100 megawatts! Maybe I won't make this puppy!]


Cheers!

MarkF
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark J. Foster
Again, if I sold you a light bulb that "accepted 1080p", it'd still be a 1x1 projector! ;) Only if I had an array of 1920x1080 light bulbs that switched very quickly, indeed, could I sell this as a "1080p projector"!


[Hmmm. If those were 60 watt light bulbs, my theoretical 1080p projector would consume more than 100 megawatts! Maybe I won't make this puppy!]
Too difficult Mark, just have the single light bulb wobbulate really fast to get 1920x1080. :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks guys, ok I understand this much better now. I know to look for the native display when checking the specs. No sense paying extra for something that can accept 1080p when it is only going to make it look like 720p anyway.


Thanks again for the help!!


John
 

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Hi, Gang!


John: There you go! Now get out there and start watching different projectors, and find out what image attributes are most important to you personally! :)


HTPCFan: ROTFLMAO! For some reason, I keep wondering about the speed of light. :eek: That poor filament!


All: Horrors! Please forgive my inexcusable technical error! I guess that I was trying to pawn off a BLACK & WHITE 1080p projector as the real thing! In reality, we'd actually need 5760x1080 bulbs for true color. Ye Gads, even if those were 10mA LEDs, then the panel would consume ~200,000 watts - and that still doesn't count the driver electronics! I'll go stand in the corner now. :eek:


Have Fun!

MarkF
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Unfortunately In my city there aren't many places to go to see projector setups. And the few that we have dont have them in an ideal environment. I went to Fry's, RC Wiley, and Ultimate Electronics but all 3 show rooms are weak with alot of ambient light and can't really get a good idea of what the projector can do. I was almost going to give up on my dream thinking that a projector wasn't going to compete with a good dlp rptv or plasma untill I saw my friends mitsubishi and realized that the potential was there.


From what I've been reading this morning I'm getting the message that resolution is probably not the most important key and that CR, color accuracy and brightness maybe things you are more concerned with. Not having a clue on those categories I think I will have to trust the people in the know here on whats the best choice. The best pj I've seen with my own eyes so far has been the Sony HS51, but the rooms that Frys and RC Wiley had them in really did them no justice at all.


I'm going to go try and work with some of these calculators and see if I can narrow down my available choices for my room size. I'm thinking of building a false wall on the side of the room that I will put the screen so I can permantely mount it and enclose the front speakers near it as well. My room is 19'8 by 11'10 with a 8 ft ceiling...what do you recommend as maximum screen size for a room that size? I want to have the biggest screen possible without sacrificing picture quality.


Thanks again guys!
 

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John


I was like you about 4 months ago. Wanted a home theater with a budget and not very many places to see them. I did the research like you on the web and received very good advice from the members here, but the best of all was DON't BUY UNLESS YOU SEE IT IN ACTION. I went to Best Buy Magnolia Store, Ultimate Elect. and Circuit City and COMPUSA and others, then I went to a CEDIA Certified HT installer and saw the RUNCO and SIM2 line up against the INFOCUS and SHARP products that had better specs and were more money. One of the biggest differences I have found is not necessarily the resolution the projector can produce, but the optics and integrated processing and scaling of your source signal by your projector that affects your viewing picture the most. I wound up going with a Runco 410, a 576P machine suggested Retail $3500 and would put that up against any 720P machine costing up to $10,000. Just because you have a lot of pixels to display, doesn't always mean they will be displayed in such a way to give you the picture you desire. Seeing is believing and everybody's eyes are different, so my advice is narrow your picks and view them in person using the same type of screen and video signal to get a true comparison.


Good luck and happy hunting.
 

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John,


Sorry I missed this in your previous post. Most all PJ manufacturers recomend a minimum of 1.5 times your screen width. I have a 92" diagonal 45 x 80 in a room 13 X 17 and when my furiture arrives next week I will be able to seat 7 plus another 3-4 on bean bags on the floor. If you want limited seating at the back of the room you probably could go 100-106 diagonal that would mean sitting back at least at least 13-14' from the from of the screen which would be approx 52 x 92 in a 16:9 format screen.

http://www.dalite.com/products/produ...cID=20&pID=234


The above link is to Da-Lite screen products with screen dimensions in the different formats available from them.


Hope this helps
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hi Chris,


Great Suggestions! Thanks for the advice. I will look around the city and see if I can find someone that has a Runco showcased.
 
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