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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to share my "thumperizing" experience, in this case a NEC LT84 SVGA DLP. This unit, little brother to the LT140 XGA model, was the precursor to the LT85/LT150(Z) units. My video setup is composed of:


DVD: Toshiba SD2300

Processor: Iscan DVDO v. 1

Screen: Stewart StudioTek 1.3 (84 " diag, 4:3)

cabling: MonsterM1000 Svideo between DVD and DVDo. Mogami RGB to RGB 50ft cable between DVDO and projector.


The inverted projector resides +/- 13 feet from the screen, and the seating position is exactly below the unit.


Out of the box the unit had problems with dark images, what can only be described as having the infamous "white crawlies" but in the dark portions of the image. Regardless of adjustment I could not remove this condition so I accepted it as a limitation of the unit. Quite honestly I wasn't having too much fun with the PJ. After close to a year with the unit I decided to contact Thumper and send it over for "upgrades".


First of all I want to reiterate what a pleasure it was to deal with Thumper, not only is he well versed in what he does but he also takes the time to listen to any question or concern you might have. He continually keeps you informed through regular emails detailing the day's events and findings. Given my unit was the first LT84 he had done, this was very comforting. The process for my unit involved several enhancements:

> Internal Cleaning and sealing: The entire light path, optics and engine were found to be very dirty with plenty of dust. This also eliminated some existing dust blobs. As a result of these findings , the DMD chamber was partially sealed to minimize future contamination.

> Custom HALO mask: this unit had a distracting HALO surrounding the image as well as light spill. A mask was built to minimize this problem. The HALO is all but invisible (80% reduced) except on the left-hand side where Thumper explained to me that due to the DMD design, that was the best that could be done without affecting the screen light output.

> Color wheel mods: The clear section of the wheel was blocked and the gaps between the glass segments were filled.

> Software reset: An internal switch allowed Thumper to reset the unit's software which, incredibly, eliminated the "inverted white crawlies" problem I had suffered for over a year (!!).

> Gamma: the default gamma curves were not modified.


The process took but a few days and the unit was back on my doorstep.



RESULTS:


As it turns out, Thumper informed me that the light engine used in this model is very similar to the one used in the LT150, not a bad deal. Prior to modifications, the contrast ratio with the whites "off" was 260 to 1. The new reading is 575 to 1 in the same mode while maintaining the same brightness level ! The unit now displays MUCH improved blacks with detail I had never experienced from any DLP or LCD. Here are some small unretouched pics taken last night. They don't do the image justice but it is similar (the links take you to the full size PICS):

http://albums.photopoint.com/j/View?...609&p=54126580 http://albums.photopoint.com/j/View?u=1020528&a=12358609&p=54126569&Sequence=0&res=high

http://albums.photopoint.com/j/View?...609&p=54126584 http://albums.photopoint.com/j/View?u=1020528&a=12358609&p=54126573&Sequence=0&res=high


The camera is an Olympus D-490Z, image quality was not maximum and I'm still learning to use it so I'll try a few more and post them later.


What it does: Incredibly improved black levels and detail. Increased detail and image punch. Nice color saturation.


What it doesn't do: Get rid of the rainbow effect or the motion dithering inherent to DLP's.


Ultimately I couldn't be happier with the results. The PJ is now outperforming much costlier units I've auditioned. If I were to point out a negative is that like a high-end audio system, if you feed it trash it will output trash. I am now very aware of the softening imparted by the projector's internal scaling of the VGA signal up to SVGA. In other words I'm ready for a HTPC. A Panamorph is on the way, so along with the HTPC I think I'll have quite some fun in the upcoming days.


Highly recommended !!


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Sergio R.


[This message has been edited by LMDA1 (edited 09-14-2001).]
 

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Sorry to ask some practical questions but how much did the thumperization cost, and how long did it take? Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Federico,


What's really impressive is the fact that I'm using a cheap DVD player outputting S-Video, with a DVDo line doubler into the SVGA projector. I can't wait to see the HTPC !


pham,


The process took about 3 days, but considering this was the first LT84 he ever did it might take less. The cost was $550, again being the first maybe I had to pay more or less than others. Maybe other models are different but I suspect it should hover in that range (500 - 600). Considering the cost of an ISF calibration, this is very reasonable. Was it worth it ? Every penny !


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Sergio R.
 
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