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Sharp M10S/M10X, Plus U3-880/1080, UGO S-lite/Xlite, Mitsubishi X30 All Perfect?

481 Views 6 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Steve Dodds
Since the Sharp M10S is available for $1749, I'm thinking it might be a stop gap projector to get me by until those 4096X2304 laser based 100,000 lumen, variable aspect ratio, 10000/1 contrast projectors come out this fall for $999 (I understand you have to use a flat black screen with those anyway). Or should I wait a bit for the holographic units due out next summer? But back to our $1749 M10S, I saw a demo of it along with some other projectors. Now, I'm not even close to a videophile, so you purists cover your eyes ... I thought the thing looked darn good.

I know that there are no perfect projectors out there, and certainly not for $1749. So I am not expecting perfection. But every time I get all set on a projector, at the last minute I find the thing has horrible flaws; Lamps explode, color banding, and oh my GOSH! So I don't want to buy this thing then read that they occasionally explode and kill everyone for a few city blocks or somehow synthesize HIV from carbon dioxide in the air. So you folks that know these projectors, how about it, are there some hidden secrets to these machines?

First, here is what I think I know based on searches in this forum and elsewhere, and please correct me if I am wrong.

The M10S, the U3-880 and the UGO S-lite are the same design, different companies.

The M10X, the U3-1080, UGO X-lite, and the Mitsubishi X30 are just XVGA variants of the above.

Now, focusing on the Sharp M10S:


Excellent contrast ratio (800/1 full on/off)

Decent color

Bright enough for darkened room (800 lumens)

No crawlies

Reduced rainbow

No hot whites

Moderate noise level (sound)

Not much light leakage

Short throw distance





No zoom

1000 hour bulb that costs $500-$600

Maybe a bit softer image then higher priced SVGA projectors (looked great to me!)

No ceiling mount (but does flip the picture, so I guess you can kludge it?)

S-video input does passable but not great job (looked good to me, see, no videophile)

No DVI, but I'm hearing that doesn't really have much impact

Gentlemen (women?), start your engines, if you have some dirt, let's have it. Positive comments accepted too.

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One problem is that this projector isn't compatible with HDTV or progressive scan DVD. This is irrelevant if you're feeding it a signal from an HTPC, which could be both your DVD player and your HDTV tuner, but it makes it a less economical option if you need an HTPC to make it do what you want. Other people in this forum have had success with using a DVDO iScan and these projectors.

For more info I'd check out this thread.

I did the review of the Sharp linked above and continue to be impressed by it. I have an NEC VT440 arriving tomorrow so I'll let people know how that compares.


Have you factored in the cost of a replacement bulb? From what I understand, lamp life is only 1000 hrs. and the replacement lamps are quite expensive (around $436 at eCost.com).

On the other hand, an SW10 clone could be had for the same amount but twice the lamp life. But as you said, the blacks are probably not as good.

Anyway, I'll see how the Plus U3-880 looks when I demo it this week. If I like it, I'll probably consider the Sharp...I just hope the Sharp is an exact clone of the Plus in performance.

- Sonny
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Bulb life is a concern as I use the projector for everything once it is dark enough. It's probably a good thing these guys aren't bright enough for me to use them during the day as well.

Unfortunately, the bulb life for the NEC models is the same. You only seem to get the longer bulb life if you switch to LCD, when blacks and screen door may be a problem.

Anyways, I'll try out the VT440 which does have a longer bulb life, but I will trade better blacks for lobger life.


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I thought the NECs go up to 2000 hrs. Anyway, let us know how your VT440 performs. I'll also demo this projector along with the Plus on Wednesday. If you get to test yours before then, let me know how it performs compared to the Sharp so I can check out these observations during my demo.

- Sonny
The NEC VT440 has a 2000 hour bulb, the LT85/150 has a 1000 hour one. The VT440 is sitting at home as we speak. Unfortunately my new speakers and a new sub amp all arived today. So much to play with.

Fortunately, there is daylight saving. I can set up the new speakers, fiddle with the sub amp and then as it gets dark, do a shootout with the Sharp and the VT440.

Somewhere amongst there I may even get to eat.


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