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Projectors supporting anamorphic enhancement

1045 Views 11 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Shawn Kelly
Due to ever increasing interest in anamorphic lenses we are compiling a list of compatible projectors. Some sources are from our own experience and some are from third parties. There are just too many models to test every one. So if anyone has any inputs, corrections or exceptions to the list please email me. Please do not submit projector models more than two years old and please only submit 16:9 projectors at this time.

If you submit info on physical compatibility, please measure the vertical beam size projected from a bright 16:9 source onto a vertical piece of paper in front of the projector housing with the image zoomed as large as possible for a worst case scenario. Besides physical compatibility (throw ratio, beam size, etc.) there are two scaling modes. The first enhances 2.35:1 content when used with a moveable anamorphic lens. This requires a vertical stretch of 2.35:1 content to use the full 16:9 pixel array. The second mode is for when a 16:9 projector is permanently converted to 2.35:1 with a fixed anamorphic lens (for a constant height 2.35:1 screen) and includes the first mode plus an additional capability to horizontally squeeze all non-2.35:1 content. Important: Please check the various modes against signal resolutions. Some projectors offer scaling modes only for standard resolutions such as 480p and below and may lock out the mode for higher resolutions such as HD.

Note that these scaling modes are valid for all anamorphic lens brands that convert 16:9 to 2.35 (or 4:3 to 16:9). In addition, if projectors are physically compatible with Panamorph lenses they will also be compatible with most other brands of commercially available anamorphic projection lenses as well.

For questions or discussion regarding anamorphic lenses outside the scope of this thread, please start another thread or email me direct so that this thread can remain focused only on projector/lens compatibility.

Thanks very much,
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Hi Shawn, I know this is the wrong area for this question, but could you tell me the difference of the PSOU120 and U150.

I have the U120 and loving it, but curious to know about the 150?


Hi Rick,

The U150 replaces the U120 as our top of the line lens and the new standard for image clarity (sorry for the pitch, but it's true!). The U150 housing is molded plastic and tapers back toward the projector versus the more squarish machined aluminum housing of the U120. The U150 also uses a new higher grade optical material that supports higher manufacturing tolerances for slightly higher performance in all areas. Finally, the U150 does not come with the complete mounting kit that the U120 had. The mounting kit is now integrated into the motorized RC mounting system of the M150 option.
Infocus ScreenPlay/PlayBig have the letterbox which support anamorphic Cinemascope DVDs - originaly intended for letterbox DVDs - but essentially the same vertical stretch.

I think adding scalers to your list is a good idea as well - which have full 2:35.1 permanent lens support with H&V stretch as necessary.
Hi Kras,

Thanks. Yeah, InFocus seems to have the same nice scaling features in their entire HT line.

We're going to tackle projectors first, but good idea. Most of the newer scalers are fully compatible but we'll look at this as well as perhaps DVD players shortly.
I would make sure to ask everyone to ck the aspect ratio works with both SD and HD. Most of these projectors that offer the letterbox mode work fine for SD material but feeding that same projector HD and the aspect ratio feature is taken away. This also happens on high end models including the Sony Ruby:(
Good point Alan. Some projectors seem to lock out some modes at 720p and above and we are listing this limitation as they are reported. I'll modify the initial post.
Wrong PJ forum, but the Optoma HD72 has integrated support for vertical scaling for CH displays. It works with any resolution input, SD or HD.
Yes Infocus had that problem with it not always working as well - I think corrected with firmware updates - though it was DVI vs. component rather than SD vs. HD at the time. I should probably fully test the new ones to make sure they are still working right. They do not have the horizontal stretch for fulltime lens though - just the letterbox stretch. Which means you are screwed for that 4:3 letterbox source of a cinemascope movie that you want to stretch AND squeeze AND stretch to fit a cinemascope screen.

This is what is confusing on scalers - they say they support 2.35:1 aspect - but is that with black bars or anamorphic stretch? I was excited to see this option on the Mitsu I am calibrating - but it turned out to be the black bars variety - it does not stretch.

I guess maybe the list needs to be a matrix of supported forms.
Kras, thanks for any further inputs on the Infocus units.

Unfortunately the whole anamorphic craze is just beginning (after years on the forum of course ;)) and various terms are used in the industry with different meanings. We are working with scaler manufacturers to try and standardize anamorphic scaling modes and terms to minimize confusion.

ZBoomer, thanks for the HD72 info. What is the projector setting for the horizontal squeeze - is it just setting the projector to "4:3"? Also, can you check it for beam height? Yes, it would go in the other forum but at least at this time it seems there is not as much interest there (so far), so I appreciate you plugging in here.
Shawn: The Lumagen HDP supports the stretch perfectly. It's what I use, it will do it on any input resolution.
Thanks, GetGray. The scaler manufacturers are doing a great job supporting anamorphic modes and some are even working on triggers to move the motorized lens in and out of the beam. Most of the available scalers are now compatible (other that some not working at 1080 resolutions) so at this point I'm only planning to list the companies and point to their product pages.
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