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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got my Epson EMP-TW10 on friday (sold in the US as the Home 10). These are my impressions so far. I'm not going to post technical details, they are available elsewhere.


BACKGROUND:


I am a newbie to front projection, this is my first projector, so don't take my review as coming from a guru.

I started out looking at the Infocus X1, but both my wife and I were distracted by rainbows, so I looked at the Epson S1, because my budget was pretty tight. But in the end the lack of an optical zoom on the S1 persuaded me to spend a little more.

All my viewing so far has been of Zone 4 PAL DVD's, so I can't comment on NTSC. My DVD payer doesn't do progressive, so it just a standard interlaced source.

The Hifi shop I purchased the projector from was out of component video cables in the length I need, so they have loaned me an S-video cable to use untill the component cable arrives next week.


SETUP:


I have set the projector up in our relatively small lounge, which is about 4 meters deep. One of the major problems is that the room has windows on all 3 walls (the 4th side of the room joins to th open plan dining room). So my only real option was to use a pull down screen in front of the curtains, and mount the projector on the ceiling or wall above the seats.

I bought a Dalite 100" (4:3) matt white screen which I have hung from the ceiling in front of the ranch slider. That was easy enough, or would have been if I didn't read the tape measure incorrectly. Now I have 2 more holes than I need in the ceiling!

I made a custom bracket to mount the projector on the back wall above the seats. I was lucky, I made the bracket just long enough, so that the throw distance was just within the limits of the optical zoom for my screen size. I haven't got a digital camera at the moment or I would post some pictures, as I am quite proud of the bracket, and more importantly my wife will be happy that I have not put something really ugly on her ceiling (once it is painted of course).

This projector is not small, in particular it wide, but relatively short. But it has attractively styling, that does not attract attention to itself.

The air intake is on the bottom, and the exhaust is on the front of the unit, so you don't have to worry about clearance on the back. I'm not sure how well this works when it is table top mounted.

One feature which I thought was cool, is that there is a remote controll sensor on the front and the back. Not sure if other models do this, just struck me as a good idea.


THE PICTURE:


This is what I have watched so far, with viewing conditions and my impressions. Note that I have been experimenting along the way. Animated movies feature more than usual as my 3 year old son is mesmerised by the big screen.


Ice Age - Threw this one in the DVD player after hanging the screen, with the projector sitting on the coffee table on friday night. It is hard not to be blown away by an image that is 2.2 meters wide, when you are used to watching DVDs on a 4:3 29" TV. I used 'theatre black' mode which drops the lamp output for better contrast and black levels. The colours were great, and even with some lights on, I was impressed. Screen door was visable, but not annoyingly so. I don't think you would want a bigger screen, or screen door would become a problem.


Star Wars 2 - Watched this during the day on Saturday. It was a sunny day outside, and even with the curtains closed there was quite a bit of light about. Switched the PJ to theatre mode to get more brightness. Even with quite a bit of light, it was still quite watchable, but the detail in dark scenes was not great.


Saving private Ryan - Watched this in the dark on Saturday night. My wife is into doing craft and stuff while we watch, so she had a lamp on, directed away from the screen. Back in theatre black mode. The impact of this movie on a screen this size is amazing (the great sound track helps too). I found my heart beating at twice it's normal pace during the beach landing. I found the colour a little green which was distracting, but changing the colour temperature setting and lowering the skin tone setting seems to fix this. For big impact the big screen is awesome.


Shrek - I haven't watched this for a while, and had forgotten how much I love it! I think I have got the settings just about right now, and shrek looked fantastic. I watched this on Sunday afternoon, which was a gloomy day here, so I didn't have sun streaking in through any gaps in the curtains.

I was extremely happy with how this looked, fantastic colour, very minimal screen door. To be honest I found myself forgeting about the projector, and just enjoying the movie, which is exactly what I wanted.


CONCLUSION:

I am very happy with my purchase. I will continue to play with the settings, but it is 98% there already (maybe more). Yes I can see screen door when I look for it, yes it is an LCD projector and so has the contrast and black level limitations that go with that (but no rainbows). Sorry for the lack of nitty gritty analasis, but to me that is not what movies are about. Movies for me are about escaping from reality for a while, and the question to ask of any piece of home theatre equipment is does it help or hinder the escaping.....the Epson TW10 definately helps. It has fantastic colour, better contrast than other LCD projectors in my price range and most importantly I'm still smiling.
 

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Its great that you are enjoying the projector!!!!!

You may want to reduce the screen size to 84" to 92" wide screen to replace your 4/3 100" . If you do this you wont need to worry about screen door, and if you get a pulldown with high contrast matt white, you will get even better balcks.

Remember always try to match the screen shape with the LCD shape ie, 16/9 to 16/9 and 4/3 to 4/3.

Cheers

Aaron Bleakley

Eastern Hifi Custom Install
 

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Also you may want to get a copy of Monsters INC and use the THX optimiser to help you with your settings. As it is a PAL disc, there arent the differences between NTSC and PAL when using the Avia Or Video Essentials Discs
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Aaron, I have a copy of Monsters Inc, but didn't think to use the THX optimiser. I'll try it out tonight.

Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't a 92" 16:9 screen the same width as a 100" 4:3 screen (80" wide)? and therefore the image will be the same size on these 2 screens, and screen door will be the same? I find the screen door quite acceptable on this size screen.

The 16:9 screens seem to be alot more expensive (which doesn't make sense because they use less material) so I don't see the point in spending more to get the same size image. Virtually all my DVDs are 1.85:1 0r 2.35:1 so they are going to have gray bars on the top and bottom on a 16:9 screen too. The only way to eminiate the grey bars is to have adjustable masking, which I don't think is practical with a pull down screen. Or am I missing something?

I looked at getting a high contrast screen, but wasn't able to demo one, and am very happy with the picture in theatre black mode on the matt white screen.

Thanks for your comments. Your input and the excellent service at the Napier store has already contributed to me recommending Eastern Hifi to others. One guy I met on another forum is planning a projector purchase from Wairua Park very soon.
 
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