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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone; I am a relative novice to the home theater sector and wanted to get the expert advice on here.


My parents are building a new house and they have a dedicated home theater downstairs; no ambient light at all (no windows) and very large room, with 3 level stadium-style seating with distances at 13 ft.+


We are interested in the 1080p projectors available and I have essentially narrowed it down to the Sony VPL-VW50 and the Optoma HD81; the price comparison between them is not an issue and they seem to be the best performing models under $10,000


Questions:

1. Which one of these do you recommend? I have read that the Optoma with its DLP tech. offers an extremely sharp picture, while the Sony's image quality may be slightly softer but with dramatically better contrast, black levels, etc.

2. What screen size do I go with at this distance with these projectors? I am definitely anticipating 100+ with a room of this size, but what is the correct capability/pairing for these projectors? Is anything larger than 100 too big for these projectors? Will anything smaller prove too small for the room?

3. Components: anticipate getting an HD-DVD player of course, but what is the correct kind to pair respectively with these projectors (I understand the frame rate has some influence in terms of projector and component pairing)?


Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks for taking the time.


- ap.
 

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You should take the HD81 and VW50 off of your list and replace them with the JVC RS1/RD1. It has dramatically higher native contrast than both. Several people have already said that the JVC easily beats the Pearl (VW50). It doesn't rely on iris tricks to claim such a high contrast ratio like just about every other unit. It'll be as close to CRT quality as you can currently get.


Most good HT projectors will pull off 100" with no problem. My 600 calibrated lumen 4805 does 10.5' x 5.9' with no problem and with no gain. The HD81 can pull off good screen sizes easily and the RS1 should too; not sure about the Pearl though. Not sure what its calibrated brightness is, but 100" shouldn't be a problem.
 

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I run 104" screen with my Pearl in a not so light controlled room and it is MORE than bright enough. I have no idea where people get the idea that this projector can not do the job. I would have no hesitations going larger in a total light controlled room. The RS1 may very well be a better projector but it is not available yet. I have also heard a coulpe guys using the HD81 on very large screens because of its bright light output. Which may be an option if you are going with three rows than a larger screen could help. And it has a scaler if you may need in the future or setup a CIH 2.37 1 screen (very cool). I do not think you will be disapointed with any of them. Easiest way to choose is go see them for yourself. Enjoy sounds like a great theater in the making.


Nate
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nasty N8 /forum/post/0


I run 104" screen with my Pearl in a not so light controlled room and it is MORE than bright enough. I have no idea where people get the idea that this projector can not do the job. I would have no hesitations going larger in a total light controlled room. The RS1 may very well be a better projector but it is not available yet. I have also heard a coulpe guys using the HD81 on very large screens because of its bright light output. Which may be an option if you are going with three rows than a larger screen could help. And it has a scaler if you may need in the future or setup a CIH 2.37 1 screen (very cool). I do not think you will be disapointed with any of them. Easiest way to choose is go see them for yourself. Enjoy sounds like a great theater in the making.


Nate

Thanks for the info. Do you find the Sony's image quality excessively "soft" like some reviewers have suggested? 104'' sounds like a good size; even with this large of a size, do you find the image quality sharp enough?
 

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It is extremely sharp and very detailed I really do not get the term "soft" for the Pearl nothing about it is soft. It is a different loook than DLP as DLP looks fake and digital to me. Matter of opinion I think Sony looks natural and film like and DLP looks digital and jumps out(maybe nice for football) but I have been hosting the playoffs each weekend and everyone love the picture.


Nate
 

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Given the 3 levels of stadium seating, the offset of the HD81 would probably allow for better installation.
 

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It would be nice to know the exact dimensions of the room and the exact position of each row of seating. I'm asking because the challenge in a 3-row theater will be getting a screen that is "big enough" when viewed from the back row but not "too big" when viewed from the front.


If your front row is at 13 feet, I'm guessing that your back row could be around 23 feet away. Could be more (or less) -- depends on your specific seating, distance required to recline, etc.


If you want a theater-style experience even from the back row, you probably don't want to drop below 26 degrees horizontal viewing angle.


If I've done my math correctly, you're going to need a 150 inch screen to accomplish this (assuming a back row at 23 feet). This would give you 26 degrees in the back row and 45 in the front.


If you go that big, I don't think I would recommend either of the projectors mentioned unless you pair them with a high gain screen, in which case you will need to run calculations to determine whether the viewing cone will work in your theater.


Maybe an RS1 paired with a SilverStar or a Da-Lite High Power screen?


A room like yours is screaming for a 3 chip DLP, but a 1080p 3 chipper is way too expensive for my tastes right now, and it sounds like it's too expensive for yours too. AVS had a fantastic deal one one of the 3chip 720p DLPs, but I think I'd be afraid of screen door with my front row that close -- you might have to go smaller on the screen due to the resolution, and as you do that, the need for the brightness of a 3 chipper is reduced.


If your room has the necessary width, you could also consider going with a Constant Height 2.35:1 set-up.
 

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I've seen the Optoma HD81 light up a 150" 1.5 gain wide screen with no problem. The new HD81LV(Large Venue) is rated at 2500 lumens vs. 1400 for the HD81, the former could definitely light up a large screen without need for a high gain screen.


The Optoma HD81 and HD81LV were designed with anamorphic display in mind, so you would not need to add an external scaler if you wanted to add an anamorphic lens. They sense 2:35 content automatically to trigger vertical expansion and a motorized lens transport.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Regan /forum/post/0


I've seen the Optoma HD81 light up a 150" 1.5 gain wide screen with no problem. The new HD81LV(Large Venue) is rated at 2500 lumens vs. 1400 for the HD81, the former could definitely light up a large screen without need for a high gain screen.


The Optoma HD81 and HD81LV were designed with anamorphic display in mind, so you would not need to add an external scaler if you wanted to add an anamorphic lens. They sense 2:35 content automatically to trigger vertical expansion and a motorized lens transport.

The large venue sounds like the way to go. 2500 lumens provides a lot of spare light to account for bulb dimming, max throw (assuming a non-constant aperture lens), calibration, or whatever else.


I haven't seen either of these projectors, by the way.
 

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The Optoma's have caught my eye as well; as noted though, the LV version is not available yet. The other thing is that it appears that Optoma is still working issues with the HD81; so if I were buying today, I don't think I'd go with the HD81. But since I'm going to hold out for awhile longer, I'm keeping an eye on Optoma.
 

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Try to find a store that has a Pearl setup. This is the only way to get a feel for the PQ. Even if you have to drive a few hours...it may be worth it for such an important investment.


The Pearl, like any projector, has a "look" to it. Very pleasant and easy on the eyes...but different from DLP. Smooth is more applicable than soft. You need to see it for yourself to decide if it is right for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by gremmy /forum/post/0


It would be nice to know the exact dimensions of the room and the exact position of each row of seating. I'm asking because the challenge in a 3-row theater will be getting a screen that is "big enough" when viewed from the back row but not "too big" when viewed from the front.


If your front row is at 13 feet, I'm guessing that your back row could be around 23 feet away. Could be more (or less) -- depends on your specific seating, distance required to recline, etc.


If you want a theater-style experience even from the back row, you probably don't want to drop below 26 degrees horizontal viewing angle.


If I've done my math correctly, you're going to need a 150 inch screen to accomplish this (assuming a back row at 23 feet). This would give you 26 degrees in the back row and 45 in the front.


If you go that big, I don't think I would recommend either of the projectors mentioned unless you pair them with a high gain screen, in which case you will need to run calculations to determine whether the viewing cone will work in your theater.


Maybe an RS1 paired with a SilverStar or a Da-Lite High Power screen?


A room like yours is screaming for a 3 chip DLP, but a 1080p 3 chipper is way too expensive for my tastes right now, and it sounds like it's too expensive for yours too. AVS had a fantastic deal one one of the 3chip 720p DLPs, but I think I'd be afraid of screen door with my front row that close -- you might have to go smaller on the screen due to the resolution, and as you do that, the need for the brightness of a 3 chipper is reduced.


If your room has the necessary width, you could also consider going with a Constant Height 2.35:1 set-up.

Thanks so much for your help; this is all really helpful and necessary. I can get the dimensions shortly; I understand the necessity of such measurements in evaluating the feasibility of the items.


150 is waaaay too big I think; we were thinking somewhere in the 110-130 (depending on whatever sizes are available in the correct 16:9 or whatever aspect ratio).


That new jvc projector or whatever looks to be the talk of the town; I've read it could work even for a screen as large as 200 with its zoom. Nevertheless, will a screen size between 105/110-130 be adequate for the room? I understand the back row may be compromised, but essentially that will only be occassionally used right, with guests and such, considering the ample space on the first two levels. A screen of this size coupled with the pearl or the jvc sounds feasible, correct? (at this point, what are the other room dimension considerations? the projector will be ceiling mounted of course, correct? then is it a matter of how far to mount it from the screen)? Also, what are the basics on screen material/type selection?


Thanks again.
 

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IMO you should see for yourself. I have the Pearl (can be had from auth. dealer for 1/2 the price of the JVC RS1) I have owned projectors from sharp, JVC(G11), and two others from Sony.

I can tell you that a-it has a beautiful picture

b-it is not at all "soft" as many report here.

c-contrast/blacks are great(whether done "artificially" or not)

d-It is very easy to use.


Remember a review is one persons opinion on one particular set-up(whether its a movie, projector or plasma tv)


I also can bet that ounce the RS1 comes out there will be problems being reported here as well as unhappy owners-fact is nothing is perfect but I believe that the Pearl may not be the very best out there but that it is one of the very best values for your money. Also I hope that the JVC customer service is better that it used to be-I could not even get to a tech person on the phone with my G11. Ron
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Iceslip /forum/post/0


Thanks so much for your help; this is all really helpful and necessary. I can get the dimensions shortly; I understand the necessity of such measurements in evaluating the feasibility of the items.


150 is waaaay too big I think; we were thinking somewhere in the 110-130 (depending on whatever sizes are available in the correct 16:9 or whatever aspect ratio).


That new jvc projector or whatever looks to be the talk of the town; I've read it could work even for a screen as large as 200 with its zoom. Nevertheless, will a screen size between 105/110-130 be adequate for the room? I understand the back row may be compromised, but essentially that will only be occassionally used right, with guests and such, considering the ample space on the first two levels. A screen of this size coupled with the pearl or the jvc sounds feasible, correct? (at this point, what are the other room dimension considerations? the projector will be ceiling mounted of course, correct? then is it a matter of how far to mount it from the screen)? Also, what are the basics on screen material/type selection?


Thanks again.

The correct size screen for your room is highly dependent upon personal preference. Only you can know what the right screen size is for you. Yes, I agree that if you will seldom use the back row, that you can optimize for the front two rows instead. This will allow for a smaller screen. But at 110 inches, you will have

34 horizontal degrees at a seating distance of 13 feet (in the closest row), and only you can say whether or not that is the right size for you -- it wouldn't be for me because I'd want to sit closer when viewing high quality 1080p content (like HD DVD), but we're all different that way.


Here are a couple of links that you might find helpful. This first link will help you decide whether or not a 1080p projector is worth it for a given screen size and seating distance -- although, unfortunately, the graph doesn't go beyond 100 inches, you can get the idea that the benefit of 1080p becomes less in your middle and back rows, depending on screen size: http://www.soundandvisionmag.com/hit...esolution.html


Also, here's a calculator so you can calculate your own viewing angles. Unfortunately, this one doesn't work beyond 15 feet or so: http://www.soundandvisionmag.com/hit...esolution.html


Here's another: http://www.myhometheater.homestead.c...alculator.html


I agree with the poster above, who said to check out the projectors for yourself. I personally would not hesititate to use my Pearl on a 110 inch screen, but in the 135 inch range I think I'd start thinking about a higher gain screen material. Also, there is absolutely no way I would use the RS1 on a 200 inch screen.


You might want to run the ft lamberts calculations to get some idea what kind of brightness you would end up with.
 

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