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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am new to front projectors and could sure use some advice from the experts.


I am trying to achieve equal or better picture quality in an 84" wide screen to my Pioneer Elite RPTV (58" diagnal).


I am pretty sure that Digital projectors are not at that level yet.


I can get a new NEC XG135LCA 8" for around 14K w/ a 7ft Stuart screen $1,500 and Faroudja Native Rate Scaler 4K. Installation is possible at extra cost.


I am also considering a used Sony G-70 8" w/ about 500 hrs on it for about $5700 or a used Barco 1208 8" with 2800 hours on it for about $3200. I have never purchased anything like this used before, but my initial feelings about the seller are very positive.


My viewing distance will be 11.5 ft and I will be watching mostly HDTV from my Dish 6000 OTA and Sat, DVD, and about 20% NTSC from satellite. Light control in the room will be about 85 to 90%.


Any comments would be very much appreciated.:)
 

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If you decide to buy used, you might want to have someone more experienced take a look at the unit first. Used CRT's often offer great value but you want to make sure that you get something that is in good working order (no burn in, low hours, etc...) and if possible some sort of warranty. As for the XG135LC, it is a great projector. However, $14k seems high for that equipment. You can get the Faroudja for quite a bit less than $4k (full retail) and $1.5k for the Stewart might be full retail, which is definitely higher than we sell them for. We at one point had a bunch of XG135LC units and we sold them at $6.5k. You might want to shop around some more.


Thanks!
 

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I got my XG135LC new about 15 months ago for $13,500. I shopped around for quite a while and that was the best price I found. $14k isn't bad. I don't believe anyone could sell this unit new for $6,500 with the 2 year NEC guarantee. That's a little more than half of dealer's cost.

If you shop around, you should be able to get the Faroudja NRS for about $3K. Try Projection Systems Inc. They are at Projectorspecs.com.

As for the screen, that price is list. You can do much better. With that projector, I'd recommend a 96x54. I have a 107x60 1.3 gain and the picture looks great. It would look even better on the 96x54. I got my screen for $900 through an A/V consultant that does alot of business with Stewart. But that was a one shot exceptional deal. A favor.

I'd go new on the projector if I were you. You don't know if you're buying someone else's problems when you buy used. And there is no way to really verify the hours. They can be fudged.

Good luck.
 

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Far64...you need to reread Jason's post above, alot of brand new XG135LCs were sold to members of this forum for 6.5K, with the factory 2 year warrant. This is a fact and not open to debate.


Warren, if you want an NEC XG series (which is the best of the ones you mention) you can get excellent low hour units from sellers who are on this forum...I bought a 250 hr, XG110lc, which is the exact same projector as a 135 (just lower max Horizonal scan rate...110 vs 135khz) I payed 4 grand for it, and that was delivered.

I also have built my own screen, it cost $300, took one day to do, and uses a forum member's screen paint (KBK) which is some of the highest quality paint I've ever used! I'll put my screen up against a $1500 stewart any day.
 

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I am somewhat new to this whole projector thing myself but I came upon Curt Palme who rebuilds these things. He has been a wealth of knowledge as well as a great source for used equiptment. His E-mail addres is [email protected] You otta give him a try, he has been very far with me. Allan
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I just started my quest and if wasn't for this forum I would never have even considered a front projector. It is awesome that people can rely on this place for honest, good advice.


Jason,


The salesperson over the phone told me that thier store bought the last batch of these projectors from NEC and that they had a special price of 14K down from a list price of 26K. It sounded like a good deal, but suddenlyit doesn't sound so good anymore. Maybe he can do better. I will call you today and find out what you guys have. Thanx for the post.


Far 64


It sounds like your really happy with your set up. I have a few questions for you if you don't mind answereing . How far back do you sit, and can you hear the fan from the projector?

Do you use the Faroudja NRS? And what "rate" do u use?

THanx for your post


Kenny


IS it important that the max scan rate is 110 or 135? Under what circumstances would that be important? THanx for posting.


Allan,


I have spoken to Curt and am very strongly considering one of his pieces. I agree that he is a wealth of knowledge and he seems to be a great guy. I am glad to hear you are happy in your dealings with him. What did you buy? Thanx for posting.
 

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Given the choice and prices, Sony G70. People say:


- Practically, the NEC has a bit more flexibility in picture adjustments (not sure how that translates on the screen but I expect negligible differences at most to an expert eye on any kind of regular material).


- The NEC is a bit lighter


- Sony is a bit brighter


- Parts for Sony may be easier to find in the future


- noise seems equal


- scan rates on both are more than enough


- Sony supports progressive component and the latest NEC models may also do this, you have to check if this matters to you


- tube life based on facts is ?????


GK
 

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I must agree with the other guys that the 14K price seems a bit high for the package plus installation. Chuck Williams is not to far from you and I beleive he can install for you. I think he can even supply projectors.


Mike
 

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It is true that the NEC XG135LC retails for $26k, and based on that, $14k is not a bad price. But actually we got the last batch of XG135LC's. As many will remember we had about 3 separate powerbuy's on them in the early part of the year and the price on each was $6.5k with full 2 year NEC warranty (we are not only an authorized dealer, but we have been one of their best outlets for CRT projectors in the last couple of years). The problem is that these units are not being made anymore and so it is tough to find them new. $14k may be the best new price you'll find (supply is low, demand is high). I might suggest looking for a used unit such as several others have recommended. You should be able to get a good deal on one.


Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The name Chuck Williams sounds very familiar. I am assuming he has a good reputation around here. Can you direct me on how to contact him?


Thanx
 

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When you get up into high scan rate pj's, it's not that important, they are all going to perform well.

The formula for figuring H'scan rate is [V resolution X V'scan rate X 1.1]

I run my projector at 1280X720 @ 96hz...so my H'scan rate is 720 X 96 X 1.1= 76khz (that's approx)

Some guys here are using V'resolutions of 960, even if you wanted to refresh that at 96hz, that's still a H'scan frequency of 101khz.

So you can see, anything above a 100khz H'scan freq should provide for your every possibility.

I'm not saying look for something in that range, as you can see by the res/refresh rate I use, I could get by with something less, and many on this forum do.

However at current CRT prices (very low) why not pay a little extra and get a top performer, that way there's no need to upgrade later...after all, installing, and uninstalling these monsters is a bit of a hassle.
 

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Warren,


Unless I really want to buy new, I would not spend 14k for 8"-er. In this range you are well in the top notch slightly used 9"-ers. Spending just a bit more may make you a Sony G90 owner. If you do not want to leave any space for improvement, that is ;=]. And you will have support for many years to come. Future used prices for the G90 may be higher as the retai price went up recently.


GK
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I went to see a 135 LCA on a 90" (approx) wide 16 x 9 stuart screen with a Faroudja Native rate scaler and a Sharpvision 9000 DLP 16x9 projector (1280x720) with a runco scaler (don't know model, but msrp around 5K) on a 80" wide stuart screen and as a pleasant surprise the 9000 looked great.


Other than pixalation during the kayak demo on HD Net (salesman said the pixalation is in the source and shows up on all displays; is that true?) and what appear like some visable scan lines during the previews of the X Files DVD when the scenes change rapidly, the picture on the 9000 DLP Projector seemed a little sharper to my eyes than that on the NEC 135. I am hoping that the faroudja native rate scaler can clean up those "scan lines" that appeared using the runco scaler. I didn't really notice a lack of blacks that I have heard so much about. Also, I didn't notice the "rainbow" effect. I scanned my eyes back and forth to see if I could see it and I couldn't.


HD Net looked very detailed and seemed as good on the 9000 as on my Pioneer Elite 610. DVD upscaled to 720 P looked almost as good as HDTV. I was totally shocked at how good this projector looked.


Has anyone seen the Sharp 9000 DLP?
 

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Warren,

I found your comment about pixelization you saw on the DISH HD loop interesting. As you know I am running a G-70 and Dish 6000 receiver directly into the projector on a 106 x 69 screen. I had always considered their demo very smooth and film like. In fact one of the primary reasons I switched from CTV (after 7 yrs) was that their use of "allocated bandwidth" which produced pixelization drove me nuts when I went to a CRT.

Anyway, I just watched the entire demo loop again and especially looked closely at the kayak sceen (which is very short) and could not see any pixelization in the scene you referenced. Yes I could see scan lines in light blue sky scenes but this is to be expected considering the screen size I run. From 10 feet or so the scan lines go away. In fact the picture was so sharp, it was making be dizy being so close to it.

I did however see a very small hint of pixelization (maybe??) very briefly which Laurie introduces HDTV outside, and it was in the pond over her right sholder (you had to really look for it standing next to the screen). Just looked again and it's hard to tell if that is pixelization or just the wind blowing on the pond forming little waves.

Looked again at the kayak scene, I don't see it.


Terry
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Terry,


The pixalation I was refering to was on the DIRECT TV HD NET demo not the Dish Demo.


I spoke to someonme else about it and they confirmed that it is in the source and not a product of the projector. Also, with regard to the "scan lines" I saw, they suggested that it might be that the Runco scaler mated with the 9000 is not applying the 3/2 pulldown as quickly or effectivley as the Faroudja NR scaler was on the NEC 935. If this is the case it lookes like I may go with the 9000. Now the question is will the Seleco 300 be better and is it worth waiting for?


With regard to the Dish Demo I do recall seeing some pixalation on my 34" panasonic tube and my PIoneer 610 RPTV during some sections, but I will have to look again to see which ones.
 

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KennyG,

As you say, this is not debatable although never the less, amazing. However what is also not debatable is the fact that if you can find that unit new today, you are going to pay $14k +- for it regardless of what it may have been offered for in the past.
 

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KennyG,

As you say, this is not debatable although never the less, amazing. However what is also not debatable is the fact that if you can find that unit new today, you are going to pay $14k +- for it regardless of what it may have been offered for in the past.


Warrenbonz,

I saw the Sharp this weekend and the resolution on a 96x54 screen looked very good. Gladiator was being shown and the only negative I can site was that the colors looked a little washed out. That, however, could have been caused by the ambient light level in the store. I would like to see it in a completely darkened room.
 

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Warrenbonz,

The distance from screen to eyes is about 16.5'. I do not use an NRS although I have been thinking about buying one, primarily for watching the non-anamorphic dvd's I own. Currently, I feed a progressive signal through an Extron Transcoder directly into the projector. Scan lines are virtually non-existant with anamorphic dvd's and the picture looks great. This is an inexpensive way to get started. You can always add an NRS later.


The ceiling height is 9' and fan noise is more than I prefer but you tend to ignore it after a while. I have considered building a hush box around the projector but I'm affraid that it could lead to heat problems.


I am thrilled with my present set up and recommend it highly.
 

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Gee, I wonder if Warrenbonz and Far64 were getting their pricing from Stereo Exchange...


Rookies! Stick to this forum for better deals from AVS! Much better!


Forgive me, but I feel the urge to inject some perspective with regard to the Sharp 9000 vs. the NEC XG135LC comparison here. Now, the 9000 is a pretty nice machine for a DLP (when combined with an obligatory Runco or Faroudja scaler, so we're getting up there in price). But, there's just no comparison to an XG135LC, one of the finest projectors ever made with a picture that is within a hair of as-good-as-it-gets.


Warrenbonz, I fear you're leading yourself seriously astray if it's a truly satisfying, film-like image you ultimately seek. DLPs are devices of convenience, not picture quality. There are certainly very good reasons for purchasing the Sharp, but getting the best picture for your money is not one of them.


The demo and comparison you made was biased, though you may not realize it. First that NEC XG135LC at Stereo Exchange is not perfectly set up. Jeff Bryngelson, our resident NEC projector maven, would not be happy at all with it. But more importantly, a 90 inch screen is generally too big for an 8 inch CRT projector. Put the NEC XG on the 80 inch screen -- and the Sharp on the 90 incher -- and see if the NEC doesn't overwhelm you with the richness and three dimensional depth of its picture.


While you're there, make sure you put on a tough film like "The Matrix," with its off beat color palette that will have you squirming in your seat if you see it on a DLP or LCD. That film simply has to be seen on a CRT projector for it to work visually.


Or try any science fiction film with jet black deep space scenes (the opening sequences of "Lost in Space," an otherwise poor movie, are a good test). You'll immediately see why the NEC is not only vastly superior, but also compelling to watch -- a phrase I guarantee you will never come to mind with regard to the Sharp once your eye becomes a bit more educated. Yes, CRTs are a pain in the rear, but the images they afford will move you indeed.


As for the pixelization you're seeing on the 9000 -- get used to it. It may well be in the source, as you were told. But it's more likely that its an artifact produced by the Sharp. Every single DLP I've seen or had on demo in my home has had this problem with HD broadcasts. I watched the Super Bowl in HD this year on a DLP and it displayed the same pixelization artifacts from time to time. The current DLP chips and software simply can't keep up with the resolution demands of 1080i broadcasts, so you get occasional pixelization. Do a search on the lamp forum for more technical explanations of this deficiency. Yes, you can learn to live with it. But on the other hand, it isn't an issue at all with the NEC.


One more thing to keep in mind: Though you may not see the rainbow now, you will. Go back to the store and take another look at the Sharp. Ask them to play the credits at the end of a movie with their white graphics on black backgrounds. As the credits appear, move your eyes quickly to and from the screen and you will undoubtedly see the rainbow.


And having seen it once, you'll start seeing it more and more, and not just when the credits are rolling. I'd say there's a 50-50 chance that the rainbow effect will become the bane of your home theater existence. So, be darn sure you see the Sharp several times for extended periods to be certain you can live with it.
 
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