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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everyone,

Hope all is well and I apologize if I am not posting in the right area - it's been about two years since I've posted on this forum. Anyhow, I have recently moved home and our LCD TV is starting to show it's age (colored lines in the middle and just too small for where we are sitting). My dad was thinking of getting a projector and that's where I'd love to get your opinions on. I attached some photos to help give a better perspective.

I realize the room where we'd be doing most of the watching would not be optimal for viewing during the day, but I'm hoping we can improve the darkness during the day with better blinds (they're like 20 years old lol) plus most of our watching is during the evening. In the images below, I tried to capture what the room looks like. In the first picture, my dad was hoping to cut out a section in the lower ceiling (the non vaulted part) to house a projector. I tried to edit the picture and show a green square to show where he was thinking to make it clearer. Would this work or would it be better to mount the actual projector to the ceiling?

For the measurements:
The length of the room from the wall (where the TV is shown) to the opening area/ceiling is about a 19' and the ceiling is about 8' high. Would a 19' throw be too far for a projector? I tried looking up some rough calculations online and on epson's calculator it approximates the image size about 192".

So I'd definitely love to get your thoughts if this is
1) worth pursuing
2) recommendations on one that is
 

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Let's start with the room lighting.

It must be emphasized that with proper lighting control almost any room can work for front projection. But, movie theaters are dark. They are painted black, have black ceilings, dark carpet, and dark furniture. So, you need to base every single expectation on how far away from that ideal your room is and will be. A white ceiling, beige carpet (or medium hardwood), with light colored walls... Your AFTER DARK viewing will be negatively impacted by these items. You don't have light control because you turn the lights out, you have light control when you truly are dealing with the 1,200+ lumens which will be reflecting off the screen into the room.

Still, good results are certainly obtainable even with light colors in the room. Obviously any windows, especially near the screen, will have a huge negative impact on the viewing experience.

While you want a room to be cave like, you really want where the screen itself is to be as cave like as possible, then you can have lights away from the screen without it completely destroying the image.

SEE: http://www.avintegrated.com/lighting.html

Good results though, certainly possible, and a number of projectors will work from your distance with the right sized screen.

The opening you need to make would need to be plenty large enough to house the projector AND to provide adequate ventilation. So, if the projector is 16" wide, you don't want an opening 17" wide. Also, for perfect alignment, you really want to use a ceiling mount which allows for yaw/pitch/roll control. So, it won't be some 'small' opening in the ceiling. As well, many projectors MUST be upside down when mounted above the screen. So, this will encourage the use of a good ceiling mount.

I would probably be looking at a model like the Epson 5030 or 5025 for this setup. They are fairly bright, have significant lens shift, and have excellent zoom range. If your throw distance is really 19' (lens to screen!) then the 5030/5025 can put out an image between 91" and 196" diagonal. It should be able to give you about a 120" diagonal or so pretty easily. That's enough size for about a 12' to 14' typical viewing distance.

I hope that truly answers your questions.

You see, it is worth pursuing if you want a great 100"+ setup in your family room and are willing to make the changes you need to so you get the most out of the setup. Some people do, some don't. It's awesome, but some can't or won't make those changes. It would certainly work in your setup, as it is, after dark only. Remember, Summer after dark is 9:00 at night. So, you have to make real changes for this to be a more practical 'TV replacement' option.

Here is a complete list of projectors which can hit a 120" diagonal from 19' away under $3,000...

http://www.projectorcentral.com/pro...jh=&td=19&is=120&i=d&tr=&oop=1&sort=pop&sz=15
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Let's start with the room lighting.

It must be emphasized that with proper lighting control almost any room can work for front projection. But, movie theaters are dark. They are painted black, have black ceilings, dark carpet, and dark furniture. So, you need to base every single expectation on how far away from that ideal your room is and will be. A white ceiling, beige carpet (or medium hardwood), with light colored walls... Your AFTER DARK viewing will be negatively impacted by these items. You don't have light control because you turn the lights out, you have light control when you truly are dealing with the 1,200+ lumens which will be reflecting off the screen into the room.

Still, good results are certainly obtainable even with light colors in the room. Obviously any windows, especially near the screen, will have a huge negative impact on the viewing experience.

While you want a room to be cave like, you really want where the screen itself is to be as cave like as possible, then you can have lights away from the screen without it completely destroying the image.

SEE: http://www.avintegrated.com/lighting.html

Good results though, certainly possible, and a number of projectors will work from your distance with the right sized screen.

The opening you need to make would need to be plenty large enough to house the projector AND to provide adequate ventilation. So, if the projector is 16" wide, you don't want an opening 17" wide. Also, for perfect alignment, you really want to use a ceiling mount which allows for yaw/pitch/roll control. So, it won't be some 'small' opening in the ceiling. As well, many projectors MUST be upside down when mounted above the screen. So, this will encourage the use of a good ceiling mount.

I would probably be looking at a model like the Epson 5030 or 5025 for this setup. They are fairly bright, have significant lens shift, and have excellent zoom range. If your throw distance is really 19' (lens to screen!) then the 5030/5025 can put out an image between 91" and 196" diagonal. It should be able to give you about a 120" diagonal or so pretty easily. That's enough size for about a 12' to 14' typical viewing distance.

I hope that truly answers your questions.

You see, it is worth pursuing if you want a great 100"+ setup in your family room and are willing to make the changes you need to so you get the most out of the setup. Some people do, some don't. It's awesome, but some can't or won't make those changes. It would certainly work in your setup, as it is, after dark only. Remember, Summer after dark is 9:00 at night. So, you have to make real changes for this to be a more practical 'TV replacement' option.

Here is a complete list of projectors which can hit a 120" diagonal from 19' away under $3,000...

http://www.projectorcentral.com/pro...jh=&td=19&is=120&i=d&tr=&oop=1&sort=pop&sz=15
Thanks so much for the thorough feedback I really appreciate your input. I'll try and see what I can work with. Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Here is a complete list of projectors which can hit a 120" diagonal from 19' away under $3,000...

http://www.projectorcentral.com/pro...jh=&td=19&is=120&i=d&tr=&oop=1&sort=pop&sz=15
Hey AV,

Quick question, but between the Epson 8350 and the Panasonic PT-AR100U, which would you recommend (I guess I'm trying to get the biggest bang for my buck lol)? Also does contrast ratio really matter? I've been reading up on it and a lot of people are saying it does not? I guess my dad is now thinking of possibly building a shelf up top to avoid mounting or cutting a hole into the drywall etc. Thanks in advance!

Best,
G
 

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There is no clear winner between the 8350 and the AR100. They are both several years old and IMO, the Epson 3000 blows them both away, significantly.

Contrast ratio is the number one performance measurement of any setup.

ADVERTISED contrast is the number one lie by manufacturers.

When something looks 'washed out', it's because contrast ratio has been lowered.

So, I'm not sure what you read, but don't confuse the lie of advertised contrast, with the real world contrast that a decent projector delivers.

Contrast
Shadow Detail
Color Accuracy
Resolution
Image Noise
Motion Handling
Response Time

There is a long list of things which matter with projectors, but contrast and shadow detail sit at the top of the list. You just can't used advertised numbers to get anything approaching a good feel on these numbers.

In your setup, you won't achieve better contrast with a lower black level. You need more lumens to get the most usable image, and in your room, you will be sitting pretty low on contrast. 100:1 maybe. It's the brightness you need to get the best image.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
There is no clear winner between the 8350 and the AR100. They are both several years old and IMO, the Epson 3000 blows them both away, significantly.
Hey AV,

Thanks again for the thorough input. After looking at the prices between the Epson 3000 and the next level of projectors with higher contrast, I figure I might as well save my money and try to get a nicer one. That being said, I was then looking between the Panasonic PTAE-8000, Epson 5025/5030. I was considering the PTAE-8000 since it has higher lumens and the audible noise was 22 dB. But after reading some complaints about their poor customer service, I'm not sure if I should just go with the Epson 5025/5030 although the lumens is a little lower and the audible noise is 32 dB (does the noise make THAT much of a difference?). Is the main difference between the 5025 and 5030 just the 3D? Anyway, would love your input between the PTAE-8000, 5025, and 5030. Thanks again man! Wish I was in VA then I'd probably call your company directly instead haha
.

Btw, one of the articles I read that lead to the confusion for contrast specs:

http://www.projectorcentral.com/contrast_ratios.htm



Best,
G
 

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Hey AV,

Thanks again for the thorough input. After looking at the prices between the Epson 3000 and the next level of projectors with higher contrast, I figure I might as well save my money and try to get a nicer one. That being said, I was then looking between the Panasonic PTAE-8000, Epson 5025/5030. I was considering the PTAE-8000 since it has higher lumens and the audible noise was 22 dB. But after reading some complaints about their poor customer service, I'm not sure if I should just go with the Epson 5025/5030 although the lumens is a little lower and the audible noise is 32 dB (does the noise make THAT much of a difference?). Is the main difference between the 5025 and 5030 just the 3D? Anyway, would love your input between the PTAE-8000, 5025, and 5030. Thanks again man! Wish I was in VA then I'd probably call your company directly instead haha
.

Btw, one of the articles I read that lead to the confusion for contrast specs:

http://www.projectorcentral.com/contrast_ratios.htm



Best,
G
The real world lumens of the Panasonic is less than half the 5025 or 5030. There are modes that are almost as bright, but the color gets really green and blue. With correct color, the Panny measures only 600 lumens compared to the 5030 with 1600. Advetised lumens are complete fiction. Read a professional review where they calibrate the projector and then measure the true brightness.
 

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...the Panasonic PTAE-8000, Epson 5025/5030. I was considering the PTAE-8000 since it has higher lumens and the audible noise was 22 dB.
As said above. The AE8000 is far dimmer after calibration.

Btw, one of the articles I read that lead to the confusion for contrast specs:

http://www.projectorcentral.com/contrast_ratios.htm
Projector Central often says what I say (I mod their forums). They are saying that contrast IS the most important aspect, but advertised contrast is meaningless since there isn't a true standard which it is measured by. Also, people with weak/poor rooms significantly degrade contrast levels, which makes the possible contrast meaningless.

The Epson 5025 appears to be a solid model, but at that point, I would get the Sony HW40ES.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
As said above. The AE8000 is far dimmer after calibration.


Projector Central often says what I say (I mod their forums). They are saying that contrast IS the most important aspect, but advertised contrast is meaningless since there isn't a true standard which it is measured by. Also, people with weak/poor rooms significantly degrade contrast levels, which makes the possible contrast meaningless.

The Epson 5025 appears to be a solid model, but at that point, I would get the Sony HW40ES.
http://www.amazon.com/Sony-VPLHW40E...F8&qid=1427073816&sr=8-1&keywords=sony+hw40es

I'm assuming it's this one? It's going for 1800 on Amazon right now...worth pulling the trigger? I'm going to look but in case you get to me before I can find it. Does this have lens shift/zoom? And given the ANSI lumen rating of 1700 would that be sufficient for my room setting?
 

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http://www.amazon.com/Sony-VPLHW40E...F8&qid=1427073816&sr=8-1&keywords=sony+hw40es

I'm assuming it's this one? It's going for 1800 on Amazon right now...worth pulling the trigger? I'm going to look but in case you get to me before I can find it. Does this have lens shift/zoom? And given the ANSI lumen rating of 1700 would that be sufficient for my room setting?
The Sony produces about 1300 real world lumens after calibration. That's better than most. The AE8000 is about half that. The 5030 is comparable for brightness. The Sony is quieter, and has a tighter pixel grid.

Unfortunately, you can count on any model selling at/near that price is not from an authorized reseller and will not have a Sony warranty.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
The Sony produces about 1300 real world lumens after calibration. That's better than most. The AE8000 is about half that. The 5030 is comparable for brightness. The Sony is quieter, and has a tighter pixel grid.

Unfortunately, you can count on any model selling at/near that price is not from an authorized reseller and will not have a Sony warranty.
Thanks for the feedback guys, really appreciate it. I'll save up my money to get the Sony 40ES from an authorized dealer then. Last question, given my setup, I was thinking of using a wall mounted shelf. Given that the lower ceiling is roughly 8 feet high vs the vaulted ceiling (first picture), would wall mounting it to the 8 foot portion be too high for the 40ES (the green square)? I read that the HW40ES has lens shift so would that be ok? Also if I do a wall mounted shelf, are there any recommendations on what to get to do this?
 

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The Sony produces about 1300 real world lumens after calibration. That's better than most. The AE8000 is about half that. The 5030 is comparable for brightness. The Sony is quieter, and has a tighter pixel grid.

Unfortunately, you can count on any model selling at/near that price is not from an authorized reseller and will not have a Sony warranty.
Bump
 

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8' may or may not be to high.

Go figure, a nice ambiguous answer on this.

I haven't played with the extents of the lens shift of the 40ES, so you may want to check the manual.

Not sure we discussed it, but we will assume a screen size of 110" diagonal.

Looking at the manual:
https://docs.sony.com/release/VPLHW40ES.pdf

It looks like the maximum lens shift up/down is 29% above/below the centerline of the lens. So, a screen 40" tall is just under 12" of lens shift max.

A 110" screen is 54" tall, which equates to a maximum height above the projected image of about 15.5".

So, if you mount the projector on a shelf where you indicate, then the lens must be no more than 15.5" above the top of the screen.

I may opt. just for a standard ceiling mount and put it on the bottom of that section of the wall. Just to get it a tiny bit lower.

For a mount I have always recommended the Chief RPMAU.

There is an auction for this on eBay now...
http://www.ebay.com/itm/chief-rpmau...231?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item419343c497

A GOOD price on that mount is $150, so anything under $100 is excellent. Well worth getting for whatever projector you end up with.

If you shelf mount, I would still use this mount and 'under shelf' mount it. This allows you to get the pitch, roll, and yaw controls you really want/need with a good projection setup. From there, any shelf will work. To my knowledge there is no 'good' projector shelf, because you need something large, and something which provides proper controls to level the projector perfectly so it's square to the screen. That's easier said than done.
 
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