AVS Forum banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 37 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I will post this shootout in both the sub $3500 and the over $3500 since it contains projectors in both segments.


Ok, time for me to try to sum up my impressions from the shootout I was at during this friday. The shootout featured the following projectors set up in a good enviroment and all projectors showed the same material at the same time through a DVI switch, which really


helped to compare them to eachother:


Zanyo z3

Panasonic AE 700

InFocus 4805

LG RD-JT92

Hitachi TX100


Infocus 7205

ProjectionDesign Action! Model One mkII

optoma h77


Mitsubishi HC900

NEC HT-510

Toshiba MT-200


I was at the shootout for a good 2.5 hours and checked out all projectors several times running forwards and backwards between them to really get a good feel on how they perform against each other. I will write a full review of everything.


I have to start with saying that up until now I have never been a fan of the LCD technology, primary because of VB, FPN and very visible screendoor. These issues has been big irritations to me each time I see them and it has generally bothered me so much that i have not been able to enjoy the picture quality (PQ) in the projectors. Especially if you see them in a direct shootout with a good DLP projector, which up until now for me just have more punch and a "clearer" picture.


But dont worry, I wont make this into a technology war. I WANT the LCD technology to take a big leap forward since I'm a bit sensitive to the dreaded rainbows of the DLP. However I have to date not seen an LCD that has been good enough for me to not live with them, even though they can be irritating at times.


So it was with good hopes and excitement I went to this shootout, not only for the Sony but also to see the new AE700, the new Sanyo z3 and the much aclaimed hitachi TX-100.


I started by goin into the shootout room containing the Sanyo z3 and the Panasonic AE700. I have seen the AE700 before and to my dissapointment this one was not especially well calibrated, it tinted towards red. However I have it pretty much in memory from the last time I saw it and you could still see some of its strongpoints, with the smoothscreen technology etc.


I did not feel a great difference in contrast between the z3 and the AE700, they felt pretty equal in that regard, even though the AE700 has been mesured higher in independent tests. The Sanyo felt a little bit clearer in the PQ than the AE700 and had a little more "punch" to the image. However the Sanyo had some thing that I found pretty annoying, the worst screendoor of all the projectors in the whole shootout. It felt like the image had been sliced in small small squares, if your not acceptable to SDE it was an excellen piece. There were some VB, but very little and not to the point that it would disturb me whom really dont like it. The AE700 did not have any screendoor what so ever, which makes the image become a little softer in its feel, however as mentioned before it is suffering of VB and pretty much of it and so did the last one I saw as well.


On the whole they were both very good projectors with their pros and cons, very much better than their predecessors. They were in the same room as an Infocus 4805 and the LG-RD-JT92 (same chipset as IF 4805 with higher lumens and higher contrast spec) so I tried to do some comparasing against them as well. The contrast in the both LCD machines is clearly better than LCD:s used to be, so to the point that the different is not staggering any more against the both DLP:s who were specified to contrast ratios of 2000:1 and 2500:1. You still did notice a difference though, but not as much as you used to to with LCD vs DLP.


The PQ still was a little "clearer" in the DLP machines and as long as there only was DVD material on most people there seemed to prefer them infront of the LCD:s. However as soon as HDTV material was put on the extra resolution really became noticable and the result was the oposite, directly most people thought the PQ was better in the LCD:s.


I was positivly supprised by the LG-RD-JT92 which I thought was a stronger PJ than the Infocus 4805. It wasnt shown very much since it shared the same screen as the sanyo z3, however when it was shown I thought the PQ was a bit clearer than the IF4805 and the contrast also felt better. Interesting to note is that I, whom is a bit sencitive to rainbows, felt less of them on these two 4x spin colorwheels than I did when I stood in the room at the shootout with three HD2+ projectors (more about them further down). A plus for me regarding these two projectors since I have not even wanted to see a 4x spin before.


So now FINALY, I went in a took a really good look at the new Sony HS50(51), I walked from the HS50 room a lot of times to directly compare it against the other projectors around the shootout to really get a feeling on how it compares. I saw a good 45 minutes of material on it, from LOTR and Nemo to HDTV etc. All I can say is....WOW!!..It does not suffer from any of the problems that I relate to LCD: It has absolutly no VB or FPN, it also had less screendoor than all LCD:s except the AE700. I had to go pretty close to the screen to be bothered by it, and the SDE more felt like dots in the corners of the pixels instead of fully marked as a square all around the pixels. It had far less SDE than the Z3, and less than the hitachi TX-100.


The contrast was really top-notch. You really could feel the contrast ratio when you looked at it, it did better in contrast than all the projectors in the shootout, including all the hd2+ projectors, which makes you feel that Sony can't lie to much about the contrast. I have to point out however that it was located in a better showroom than the HD2+ projectors which perhaps was not fully fair in terms of comparing the actual contrast.


The image was really calm, the colors was very very good, and since it totally lacked VB and FPN and only little screendoor the projected image felt as clean as the PQ in the DLP machines which is a revelation for me at least. The upgrade bug was biting me really hard when I saw it and I'm gonna be in hard negotiations with my wife the next couple of months I guess, its not directly WAF when she is perfectly happy with the projector we have allready (a BenQ pe7800, which mind you is a really good one).


If there is something to complain about (there allways have to be something) and could be seen as a weakness of it, it would be that it feels a bit dimmer than the high-end DLP machines in the shootout. It was pefectly fine in bright parts of movies where the contrast really shined, but it was a bit noticable when it projected really dark scenes, like the moria scenes of LOTR. The contrast was really superb and the black was excellent but it almost became too dark, which lost a little bit of detail compared to the HD2+ machines. You feel that it goes down in light output when that happens, its not a big thing and it kicked the crap out of the other LCD:s, just that its probably its only weakness. Perhaps it can be tweaked as well, time will tell.


Then, the poor Hitachi TX-100, which is an LCD I have liked before. Its a little weaker than the new Z3 and the AE700, but not in a big way. When I compared it to the AE700 earlier I thought it could hold its own pretty good. However in this shootout it had the hopless task of being shown together with the Sony, and when you switched between it and the sony on the same screen it almost got emberrasing for the poor unit, the FPN (fixed pattern noice, which is when you get vertical lines and not to be confused with VB which is more like bigger vertical squares) jumped out at you, even though you perhaps would'nt have thought about it if it would have stand alone. Then when it came to the dark scenes, in for example LOTR, the Hitachi went from have feeled pretty ok in the contrast to a greyish mess that felt like you where back in 2001. Thats how good the Sony was compared to it. Perhaps it was not perfectly calibrated and the iris was turned up too high, but it was VERY noticable.


Just some last words about the Sony HS50. Did it kick the ass of the other LCD:s? Yeah you bet. Did it kick the ass of the HD2+ chipped DLP:s? Hmm, no. It didnt. You could feel that it had great contrast, but in a better enviroment than the DLP:s. In a completly similar enviromen I think it would have been a close match and not a walk-over win.


Also it felt a little bit dimmer and did'nt have the full punch of the DLP:s. It felt as clear as them however and did'nt have that feeling of that someone had spilled some milk on the image which is common on LCD (at least for me). So would I, if I had no rainbow problems have choosed it over the Optoma H77 for instance? Thats a hard question, but probably not..


Anyway, I also took my time to check out the new Mitsubishi HC900. Which is a matterhorn 1024*576 DLP with a specified 4000:1 contrast ratio and 1500 ansi lumen. It was an excellent projector, with a super punch in the picture and great contrast. I could'nt compare it directly to the more expensive hd2+ ones but I think it beat them in terms of "punch" and in contrast. However you could feel the resolution when they played HDTV on it and there it got a beating by the HD2+ DLP:s.


Ok, last but not least. The shootout between the three HD2+ machines:

The ones represented were the Optoma H77, the Infocus 7205 and the ProjectionDesign Model one MKII (a long name on that one).


I was not really at the shootout to take a look at these machines, so I wont go into great detail about them. One problem that was at the shootout was that they were a bit diffent calibrated which was a bit unfortunet, you could most clearly see it when the showed pure white material where the Infocus felt most white of them and the other two was tinted a tad on different colors. Anyways the clear winner for me in this shootout was the Optoma H77, the colors felt more mature and the contrast felt better. It also produced quite a bit less of rainbows for me than the other two, which also is a possitive thing. It was also clearly much more silent than the other two, especially the Infocus. If I was to say something bad about the Optoma, it should be that its quite ugly ;)


Anyways, thats my sumary for today. Hope it helped someone :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
653 Posts
Sounds like a heack of a shootout... Where was it ?


It appears as though the HD2 crowd is going to have some serious competition from Sony. I'm a little dissapointed the AE700 didn't fare better in other areas as it's smoothscreen feature has so much potential.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The shootout was in Sweden :)


It seems like we keep getting the projectors very early here, we had a showing of the AE700 very early and now the HS51 was in a direct shootout finally :)


It was held at a great dealer here whom has a pretty good set-up to be able to show several projectors in a good enviroment at the same time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,241 Posts
How much HD programming do you have in Sweden?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Not much, only a European wide channel called euro1024. There is no real need of a HD capable projector here as of yet and probably wont be for 2-3 years more...kind of sucks..


Im hoping we dont have to wait as long for the HD material to start coming on the new systems that will in time replace DVD. The HD material we saw was being projected by a HTPC with TheaterTek.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
675 Posts
Havocsi


Thanks for the great review.


How would you rank the AE-700 & HS-50 relative to the HD2+ projectors in terms of screen door ?


And, to provide us with some calibration of your personal sensitivity to screen door, can you tell us how many screen widths you have to be back from an HD2+ (or your 7800 for that matter) for screen door to disappear (on bright white)


Thanks,

Brent
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,091 Posts
Havocsi, thanks for taking the time to report. I was curious how the HS51 stacked up to HD2+ machines. Glad to hear about the H77 also, since it will be my next PJ. Tom, I knew you were right all along!! :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,896 Posts
Havocsi.. Sweden you say... interesting...


Interested on a couple of points...


First the NEC HT510 ... I didn't read anything in your review about this new one from NEC ... It has a few features that interest me.


Also the thing that keeps me at length from the 4805 is the build quality. Did you get a chance to see them ...touch them... and was the LG as loud as the 4805.. I have gotten used to a low noise levels from a projector of late ...


Great review and show ...sounds like it was fun..


Robert
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,235 Posts
Havocsi:


Thanks for one very useful report!


Regarding the perceived brightness of the Sony compared to the HD2+: Were they projected on the same screen? or screens of the same size and material? Do you happen to know the lamp setting (high or low) for any of the projectors, and was the Sony's iris in the auto mode?


Thanks again - great job.


Pip
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,445 Posts
The spec. in low mode for LG is 24dB.

You could not judge noise level.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
25,536 Posts
Havocsi,


Again, thanks so much for the excellent, informative report.


A couple of questions:


How much light was reflected from screen to screen? Dimmer pj's would be at an unfair advantage in perceived CR if it was excessive.


When you say the Sony was not as bright as the HD2+'s, you're referring only to the Infocus and Action, right?


Thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
630 Posts
Havocsi,

Did the Sony have a scart connector? I'm curious to see if the European vesion has a scart or not as I've not seen it mentioned in any of the released information (not that I intend using it but it might be handy to have).

Thanks,

Paul
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
122 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Paul: Didnt check for that sorry :(


Noah: There wasnt much light reflected on the screens, more so on the HD2+ ones since they were close to eachother than on the HS50 one which was alone in its room.


It felt dimmer than the H77 as well, which did not feel much dimmer than the IF and the Action. It could hold its own in terms of "punch" in the image compaird to them.


I wouldnt call the Hs50 dim though, just that it felt a little bit dimmer than the HD2+ projectors.


PiP: the HS50 was on a bigger screen than the others which can have something to do with it feeling a little bit dimmer. However there was less ambient light in that room than the others, so I dont know really. I have no real information regarding its setting, I saw the menues though and it seems like you can do A LOT with them.


Mandrax: Cant comment on build quality from just seing them set-up in the roof, sorry. And as Ohlson pointed out, the LG was pretty quiet, much more so than the IF4805. It also seems like most people whom saw the IF vs LG came out thinking the LG gave a nice picture (not a huge differance, just a general feel), its also cheaper (here at least) and quieter so I would choose it any day over the IF.


Brent: Im so so sensitive to Screendoor. I have a matterhorn DLP which is 1024*576 and sit at about 1.9X the screen width and dont feel it there. When I come down to about 1.5 I start seing it. I was very very sensitive to SDE when it came to the z3, could see it at any distance. The AE700 is excellent in terms of SDE and the HS50 was pretty ok, you see it more than the HD2+ but it was better for me than all other LCD except for the AE700.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,445 Posts
The color wheel in the LG projector was r,g,b,cy,m and clear. That is a new one to me. LG is also coming with a Matterhorn dlp one step up form jt92.


I believe the Sony hs50 has no ethernet comapared with hs51. I have not seen anything that indicates a scart connection.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
630 Posts
Scart connector - thanks for the info guys. Looking at the back of the Sony, I doubt they could squeeze a scart connector in without removing something else so quite possibly it doesn't have one.

Regards,

Paul
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,235 Posts
Mattias:


1864 posts and no writeup on this shootout? Come on man - we're all waiting. Are you in complete and total agreement with Havocsi? Nothing to add to his excellent work?


Pip
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,445 Posts
Post count is no sign of quality.

I think havocsi did a good write up.


My view

If you have the money you should buy a lcd like hs50 and not ae700 or z3. If you are buying lcd and have a little more money to spare the choice is obvious, Sony hs50. This technology will come to use by others but perhaps not until some time into next year. Also late next year 1080p lcd will be a reality at a sane cost for non mega bucks.


Considering the price my clear favourite was Mitsubishi hc900, it wowed me. I like the technology discussion but I am not the best judge of picture quality.


I am not sensitive to rainbows since I did not experience any discomfort when looking for quite some time on dlps. I too liked the H77 the best. In a dedicated room perhaps the difference would have been greater to the other hd2+ projectors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
1 - 20 of 37 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top