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DLPs do have a screen door effect. It is just less noticeable than on LCDs. Screen door is the black space between pixels and is found on every fixed pixel display technology we have at the moment. The rainbow effect seems to be very personal. Some people can see them on almost any program material. Some people can't see them at all. Most people fall somewhere between these extremes. I think it is fair to say that only the most rainbow sensitive see them to an annoying extent on DLPs with 5x color wheels. However, a significant minority of people see them at 2x.


I'd like to not see rainbows, since I could buy a 2x projector and be happy. As it is, I'm still playing the waiting game to get a DLP with a fast color wheel at a price I can pay.
 

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I would put it this way: Don't eliminate DLPs because of rainbows without actually having viewed one and knowing what speed the colorwheel is on the projector. The only good reading about them here is going to do is give you an idea of what percentage of people have problems with it.
 

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My nieghbor has a dlp projector (Infocus LP350)... and the rainbows drove me nuts.


They are not only apparent if you shake and move, this just increases the effect. In certain movies, or certain scenes, the rainbows appear without looking for them. (or moving or whatever) For example, we watched 'AI' on this projector, and the rainbows were there for almost the entire movie, giving me a headache. Also saw them quite a bit in 'Crouching tiger'..


I have also seen a few movies where the rainbows rarely showed up for me -- but I saw enough of them that I personally will stay away from dlp with a slow color wheel.. (have also seen sharp z9000 with 5x wheel, and saw no rainbows at all)



The only way to determine whether or not they bother you is to see a dlp in person.
 

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The rainbow effect is only over-rated to people who don't see them.

[EDIT: Oops meant to say: to those who don't see them frequently]


Aside from the rainbow effect, some people get headaches or eyestrain, even if they don't see rainbows. Headaches tend to go away after several hours of viewing, although eyestrain may still linger.


A 5x wheel eliminates rainbow for most people. A high-quality DVD player or HTPC can also remove most of them except in the highest contrast images. A lower-gain (gray) screen helps some people. Others use lens filters to cut down the light.


It is also source-dependent. Bad cables, bad reception, or poor processing can exacerbate rainbows, even on machines with 5x color wheels.


I can see rainbows quite easily, even on the 5x projectors. I don't get headaches anymore, but still have minor eyestrain after 80 hours of use.


All I have to do is move my eyes and I will see rainbows in dimly-lit (but high contrast) scenes. No need to shake my head or wave my hand in front of the screen.


Probably 1% of the population can perceive rainbows on a 5x projector. A lot more can see them on a 2x projector. Could be as high as 20%, or as low as 10%. It's hard to tell. Obviously, TI will not make any survey results public. :)


Perceiving rainbows and being bothered by them are different things.


It's like the 9 stages of death. Remember that Simpsons episode with that Japanese blowfish? :)


Anger

Grief

Depression.

...I forget the rest...

Acceptance


:D
 

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Aside from bothersome rainbows, inexpensive DLP projectors gave me strong headaches and nausia. They certainly aren't over-rated to me. I nearly bought one without seeing it first... don't make that mistake!


-Mike

(went for 300u instead)
 

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There is no perfect projector, much less a perfect affordable projector. You pick your poison.


The only way to know what is the best mix for you...is to view them. I personally have a fairly strong DLP reaction, so I choose to not watch my DLP projector much (preferring LCOS instead). My wife, on the other hand, has no problem with DLP at all.


Other people have different issues with LCD, LCOS or CRT. You pick your poison.


Just so I don't sound totally negative :)D), I wouldn't give up a front projection home theater for anything else. Movie night just wouldn't be the same without it.


So, DO find what works for you...but don't be discouraged...there are some excellent images to be seen out there, and the 'problems' are usually very small.
 

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Mark is right...I have a Z1, and now I'm starting to notice the fixed pattern noise. And, I just got a green dust blob on the left side of the image. When the image goes black, there is a nice green oval haze about 10 pixels in diameter! Ouch.


And I still have a fan spinup issue, even with the service menu tweak.


I have to admit, the NEC LT240 is a very refined projector compared to the Z1. Of course, it is double the price. :D
 

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I prefer DLP's picture over LCD. But I can see rainbows sometimes even

on 4-5x machines. The real problem are the subtitles for me.


Wathchin the movie without subtitles iwith a 4x DLP means just few rainbows during the show. Enabling subtitles brings out the effect more for me. When reading, you move our eyes across the screen rapidly, and you do this several times in a minute.
 

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I'm sure it's a HUGE issue for some people....less of an issues for others, and no issue at all for some.


It's pretty evident to me that there are alot of people in the forum totally biased against DLP and others that are totally biased against LCD. It's really a shame because alot of the "issues" with each technology are really blown out of proportion, and people that are shopping really get caught up in the hype. Proper set up and fine tuning is a must. If the pj you are looking at has the contrast and brightness cranked, you are going to have eyestrain and a headache on any pj....and with a DLP you will increase the chance of seeing rainbows for sure.


With that said, I finally ordered an X1 this week (DLP) and it should be here for my viewing pleasure this week. The pj cost me around $1250.00 after the rebate. It has a 5 year warranty and a 3000 hour bulb life.


Does it have it's share of weaknesses? You bet it does. It's 4:3, 2x color wheel, and SVGA.


I really wanted an LT240, but I couldn't see spending almost twice as much for it because, for me, it wasn't worth it. It's still not a kick ass color wheel and it's still 4:3 native. The XGA resolution is nice, but I can do without it for now.


The AE300 (LCD) is a fine projector as well for the money and was on my shopping list too.


The point I really want to make here is not to discount what's said, but to take it with a grain of salt.........Don't base your decision solely on specs and hype.....base it on what you see.


....and enjoy!


MQ
 

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I think mquinn25 summed it up very well.


Most of us weighed the pros and cons for our own purchasing decisions and sometimes without realizing it, become advocates for OUR projector choice as if that decision were absolute. My concern is that highlighting the key drawbacks of DLP vs. LCD or LCD vs. DLP can turn prospective new projector owners away from making ANY decision.


Yes, some see rainbows (I do occasionally on my LT240), others find screen door objectionable even in higher resolution LCD PJ's (I don't), still others find other qualities objectionable. But, I've found any of the current under $5K PJ's I've seen able to produce wonderful quality and be a joy to own and use.


So, my two cents is to use the wealth of information in these forums to help shape decisions, but be skeptical of "removing" a technology from consideration without that judgment coming from your personal experience. Neither LCD nor DLP is the best nor are each bad. Find the right projector for you by looking at the PJs.
 

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Just thought I'd add another personal experience to the posts here. I was 2 clicks away from ordering an InFocus X1 when I learned about this "rainbow" issue. My wife is very sensitive to video artifacts, so I brought home an InFocus LP350 from work to make sure she would be happy with a DLP projector. She was fine, but _I_ couldn't take it! In Harry Potter 2 there were scenes where I literally had to avert my eyes because it was painful to watch. It bummed me out - the picture was gorgeous in bright scenes, but dark scenes w/ bright points were unwatchable. So, I'll be getting an LCD PJ instead. Definitely either try one out first or order from somewhere that you can return, and try it out with a "dark" movie. For example, "Monsters Inc" was fine for me but a "Farscape" DVD was again unwatchable.
 

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Postman,


I don't know enough about the LP350....but if the color wheel has a white segment and you can't turn it off...that may be the problem. I also note the contrast ratio is pretty low for a DLP projector. 400:1?


Did you divert your eyes because of the rainbows or some other problem?


If I have to do that with the X1...it's going back...*lol*


Anyway...I am glad you found this out before you took the plunge. I am a little concerned because the only DLP's I've demo'd are expensive ones. A Runco, a Seleco and a Yamaha. Rainbows were not a problem on any....I could see them if I looked at the screen peripherally and moved my eyes back and forth really fast, but they were not distracting or even noticeable without forcing myself to try to see them. The Runco was an older pj and I THINK it was only a 1x color wheel because that is all they had then. I have a friend that has a Runco CRT and he liked the DLP very much. We both agreed that the picture was very film-like.


The point is.....reiterated again.....different strokes for different folks.


What pj are you gonna go with Postman? Good luck in your choice and let us know how it goes.


MQ
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by balagee
I prefer DLP's picture over LCD. But I can see rainbows sometimes even

on 4-5x machines. The real problem are the subtitles for me.


Wathchin the movie without subtitles iwith a 4x DLP means just few rainbows during the show. Enabling subtitles brings out the effect more for me. When reading, you move our eyes across the screen rapidly, and you do this several times in a minute.


I agree totally. I prefer the DLP picture over LCD also. I also saw rainbows on the new Infocus 7200 (5x and 6 segment color wheel). It was rare (we watched Panic Room for about 45 minutes), but I could still see it and I didn't have the subtitles on (I never tried that with DLP, but I can imagine it would be aweful for me - and we DO watch with subtitles on including English speaking movies). I saw it about 5 times in that span. Yes, that is not much, but still I found it distracting. I will say that the picture when it wasn't showing me rainbows, was amazing (not under $5K though). When I went to compare the X1, Z1 and 300, rainbows drove my wife and I crazy. The salesperson also saw them. Now that was 3 for 3 seeing them. It was too bad, because the X1 looked quite good (not to mention $500 less). If they can totally eliminate rainbows, I would look into upgrading.


I agree with another responder saying you should go and watch before ruling out DLP, but also bring along your family/friends that will be spending a fair amount of time watching it to see if they are affected.





enjoy,


Dennis :)
 

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So far rainbows on my x1 are not a problem at all. I can see them very rarely, and even when I do it's not that bad. I think you want to use the best source possible when testing, and give it a few hours for your eyes to adjust. (maybe even 10-15 hours)
 

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I second that. Since I moved to component/VGA input ( for both 576i or 576p signal), I see even fewer rainbows than before (which was already acceptable to start with).
 

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curious: the 12deg (2nd gen) dlp chip cannot cost much more than $500. (the DELL was on and off for sale at around $850.) why does noone make an XGA 3-panel DLP?


/iaw
 

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mquinn25,


You raise a good point about the LP350. I was unable to find any specs for it - for all I know it has a 1X wheel, but it's a $4k PJ so I'm guessing not. Also, I don't think a white segment would have any effect on what I saw, but I could be wrong.

Apparently, my eyes dart around when I'm watching a movie. Every time they do this when the screen is predominantly dark I get a trail of colored images from all the bright spots in the frame - faces, lights etc. It's not noticeable when the whole screen is bright. It felt like I was subjected to a barrage of subliminal images, and it made me reflexively look back at the bright spots to double check.

As I said, my wife had no troubles whatsoever; she could see the rainbows if she tried, but didn't notice them otherwise. Clearly this is an individual trait.


I'm going for the Panasonic L300U - it seems to be the best LCD PJ in my price range.
 

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Okay i've have sharp m20-x for 350 hours so far (its dlp with 3x wheel) and I have yet to see a single rainbow. Ive read about this on the forums quite a bit and i think i know what to look for but they just don't appear. Do these rainbows appear on the entire screen or just on parts of it? As for DLP and screendoors, sitting back 12 feet from a 100" widescreen it is non existent. You have to get within 6 to make out the pixal edges. If your hesistant on buying a DLP projector because of rainbows don't read to much into it. After all none of my friends have ever seen one either. I think its just a mind trick like those 3d pictures.
 

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hynek - they appear in parts of the screen, not the whole screen. At least for me.


Oddly enough, I noticed them quite a bit when I first got my X1, but I haven't seen many lately. I don't know if it's jut because of the material that I've been watching, or if it's because my eyes have gotten used to them.


Or maybe it's just because I've gone insane (I've heard rainbows cause insanity in 99% of people ;))
 
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