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Bulletins about upcoming product reviews and releases, tradeshows, new technology and advanced product features as well as our thoughts and observations on all things related to projectors.

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Archives for the year 2008:
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Exciting Home Theater Components

While awaiting arrival of the Epson 6500 UB, we've been able to put up a couple of reviews on two exciting home theater components you'll want to know about. One is the new Da-lite JKP Affinity HD screen. This really is an amazing screen as far as purity of image goes. I was quite surprised to see that the extremely smooth screen surface really did make a difference in how natural the picture looks. We have already ordered a 10.5 foot wide JKP Affinity screen in 2.35 format, and we will be using it on all reviews of 1080p projectors once we get it installed in a few weeks.more

Corrected Statements and Anticipated Arrivals

Well, last week we posted the review of the Sanyo Z3000, as well as the comparison between the Z3000 and the Panny AE3000. (By the way, I initially reported in the Z3000 review that the seven user programmable memories could not be custom labeled. They can, in fact, it was just not intuitive in the menu. I have corrected that statement in the review as of this morning.)more

Dalite Affinity HD Screen Sample Set for Testing

We've got a lot going on here. The Sanyo PLV-Z3000 is currently in review, and we expect to have this one posted next Wednesday. We are still waiting to hear arrival dates for review units from Epson. They told us back in September that we wouldn't see anything until December, and they were right about that. As soon as we know anything more we will let you know.more

Mitsubishi Rebates

In case you missed it, Mitsubishi has announced rebates on several of its home theater projectors including the HC6500, the HC5500, and the HC1600. The rebate on the HC6500 is $200, bringing the official street price down to $2,295. As luck would have it, this rebate is well-timed. We are planning to do a shoot-out comparison between the Mits HC6500 and the Panny AE3000 next week. However, since it is Thanksgiving week, we expect to post it a week from Monday.more

Shootout Requests

We just posted the review of the Sony VPL-HW10 earlier today. Overall, a great product from Sony with one of the brightest video optimized pictures we've ever seen. Several requests have already come in for a shootout between the Sony HW10 and the Panny AE3000. We will have that posted no later than the middle of next week.more

Quickly Moving Industry

We've just posted a review of the Samsung SP-A800B, which is the 1080p DLP projector designed in consultation with Joe Kane. It's an elegant projector with excellent color and gray scale performance, and those who need a projector with perfect color should have it at the top of their list. However, with the latest competitive releases this fall the SP-A800B is not on the leading edge of price/performance. This industry just moves too quickly these days.more

1080p Reviews in the Pipeline

Just a quick note to let you know what we've got going at the moment. Currently we've got the Samsung SP-A800 and the Mitsubishi HC6500 in review. Those reviews should appear later this week and early next week, although I'm not sure which will be done first. The Sony VPL-HW10 and the Optoma HD806 are expected to arrive shortly. So there are a lot more 1080p reviews in the pipeline.

Side by Side 1080p Testing

We just posted a new review of Mitsubishi's HC7000 Diamond Series home theater projector. The 5-star ratings are not included since we are withholding those until we've done some side by side testing with other 1080p models being released this fall.more

Narrowing the ANSI Contrast Performance Gap

The review of the Sanyo Z700 has just been posted. Don't miss this one if you are looking for 1080p at a rock bottom price. As we did last year, the reviews of this year's 1080p models will be posted, initially, without the 5-star ratings. We want to be able to do some shootouts before making final 5-star rating assessments.more

No Star Assesments Just Yet

Well, we were able to get the Sanyo Z60 review posted last week, but I decided to hold the Z700 review until tomorrow. The reason is that we have received the Mitsubishi HC7000, and the Panasonic AE3000 is arriving today. Since we have the opportunity, we want to see these units side by side before publishing any comments.more

Gaming and Projectors

We currently have the newest Sanyo units, the Z700 and the Z60, in the review process. We will get them both posted this week. Following those, if the review units arrived on schedule, will be the Mitsubishi HC7000 to be posted next week, and the Panasonic AE3000 will be the week after.more

CEDIA Wrap Up

The CEDIA trade show has wrapped up for another year, and our review of the show has just been posted.

Fascinating things appeared at this show. The big competitive battle this fall between LCD and DLP will be in the area of ANSI contrast. The latest LCD products are showing contrast potential that nobody ever thought would be possible with LCD. We are anxious to get our hands on some of these new high contrast models to see what they can really do. We are working with the vendors to schedule the delivery of review samples of all of the latest releases.more

CEDIA Advance Announcements

Hi folks,
The big CEDIA trade show is happening next week in Denver. This is the annual show focused on home theater technologies--projectors, screens, audio systems, vibrating seats, popcorn machines, you name it. If it has to do with home theater, it is at CEDIA. This is the show vendors use to announce many of the new products for the fall season.more

Interest in 2.35 Format Rigs

Well, there's a heck of a lot more interest in 2.35 format rigs than we'd have guessed from prior feedback. My request for comments last week generated a huge influx of email, and I thank all of you that wrote in for your thoughts on the matter.more

Projectors for Gaming

We've just posted Bill's overview of five hot projectors that you will want to look at if you are into PC gaming. As projectors have gotten cheaper, many gaming enthusiasts are looking for big pictures to enhance the entertainment experience.more

DLP, LCD and Image Persistence

If you are into large screen video gaming, you'll not want to miss the next review. Bill is currently testing five 1280x800 format projectors to see how they stack up as video gaming machines. We should have the results of this work posted next week.more

Roundup: Top five HT 1080p Projectors

We've now got five 1080p projectors lined up, and we are taking copious notes on the relative merits of each. My original plan on Monday was to post a comparison between the Mits HC5500 and the BenQ W5000 today. However, as I see now, that piece would be too limited, and would only stimulate more questions about how they compare to others. So I have modified the plan to write a single piece that highlights the advantages and limitation of each of them as compared to the others.more

Comparisons

We've received a number of emails asking about comparisons between the

Mitsubishi HC5500, and other 1080p models in the same price range. In particular, the BenQ W5000 is of interest since it is a DLP-based model selling for street prices below $2,500.more

Two Reviews in on the HT 1080p's

Well, as promised we got two reviews up this week. One being the entry level Mitsubishi HC1600, and the other the Canon REALiS SX80. The Mits HC1600 is an outstanding entry level projector for graphics and photography, but the switch to a 2x wheel from its predecessor, the HC1500's 4x wheel means a greater number of users will be bothered by rainbow artifacts when using it for video and film.more

Quick Update on Forthcoming Reviews

Just a quick update on what's in the mill. We are currently working on three reviews that should all be posted within the next ten days. Those include two new home theater models from Mitsubishi, an entry level 720p unit known as the HC1600, and a new 1080p model, the HC5500. We are also working on the new Canon SX80, which is Canon's latest 3000 lumen SXGA+ LCOS projector. Two of these reviews will be posted next week, and one soon thereafter.

Review Trends

This week we posted Notes on Infocomm 2008 and a second installment of Projectors for Photography. We will continue to develop editorial material related to photography, and your suggestions are always welcome. We are also developing some more material related specifically to projectors for video gaming.

Upcoming reviews currently in process include the Mitsubishi HC1600 for home theater, and the Canon SX80, which is Canon's latest high-brightness SXGA+ LCOS projector.

Projectors for Photography

In the last couple of months we have evaluated quite a few projectors specifically for their attributes as photography projectors. We have many more to look at, so this will be the subject of ongoing study and comment as we find models that are particularly exciting for photography.

What we have concluded so far are the following:more

Two Projects

Just a quick update ... we are working on two projects at the moment. One is the second installment of Projectors for Photography, and the other is a group review of several models that are particularly attractive for education/classroom use. I am hoping to have the photography article done and posted by Friday, and the education reviews done next week.more
Topics: INFOCOMM

In Process

We've just posted a review of the Infocus IN83, which is their latest 1080p DLP home theater projector. And in short, it is clearly the best home theater projector yet made by InFocus. It is a bit pricey, and it is sold only through custom installers and specialty retail stores. So it is not the first thing we'd recommend for the do-it-yourself enthusiast unless your primary objective is to get a super bright image for ambient light situations. However, it is a great projector for both video and digital photography.more
Topics: 1080p, DLP, InFocus IN83

Focus On Projectors for Photography

This afternoon, we are posting a review of the ViewSonic Pro8100, which is that vendor's first 1080p home theater projector, and the first model to be sold by ViewSonic through the custom installer and specialty retailer channel. That is a remarkable diversification in channel strategy, and it remains to be seen how successful they will be.

After sorting out some technical issues, we are proceeding with the review of the Infocus IN83, and that review will be posted by the end of next week.more

Upcoming Review on Projection Screens

I was hoping to get our review of Projection Screens under $500 posted today, but we are still adding a few concluding comments, so it will go up on Monday afternoon.more

Impressive BenQ Model and Upcoming Reviews

We've just posted a review of the BenQ W20000, the newest flagship, high performance 1080p projector from BenQ. Overall, this is the most impressive home theater projector yet made by BenQ. Though retail priced at $7,999, it is available for 4,999, including a three year warranty. Outstanding value for sharp, high contrast 1080p performance.more

Projectors and Screens Enroute

Thanks very much for all the feedback regarding the use of projectors for the display of photography. There is obviously great interest in this subject, and we will focus on testing a variety of models in different price ranges specifically for this purpose. We have already invited a number of submissions for this evaluation, and the equipment is winging its way to Las Vegas.more

How About Screens?

We have completed the construction of our contrast testing facility, and I will be posting an article focused on contrast specifications in the next couple of days.

Meanwhile, we have received two new 1080p projectors, and reviews of both of them are underway. These are the Infocus Play Big IN83, and the Viewsonic Pro8100. Right behind them is the Optoma HD65.more

Establishing of Baseline of Real Comparison

As you probably already know, the contrast specifications on projectors are not reliable guides to the real contrast you experience when viewing the image on the screen. A primary reason for this is that when the projector has an automatic iris, "full on/full off" contrast measurements yields different results when the iris is on and when it is off. It is not always clear from the specs whether a projector has an auto iris, or if it does, whether the contrast rating was done with that feature activated or not. If the auto iris is off during the contrast reading, it will inevitably yield a lower number, normally referred to as native contrast.more

Experimenting

The review of the BenQ W5000 has just been posted. Wow, if you want a sharp 1080p picture this one has got it. It isn't without a flaw or two, but what projector isn't? Overall, an outstanding product from BenQ!more

Various Stages of Review

We posted our latest review of the Canon REALis SX7 yesterday afternoon. I love this projector because it does a great job of lighting up my 150" 4:3 Stewart Studiotek 130 screen. For viewing old classic films, which are a particular interest of mine, this is the way to see them. Most people will want the SX7 for high resolution display of graphics and so on, but I really enjoy it as a movie projector.more

Posted Reviews, Pending Reviews

If you are a traveling presenter who wants a lot of light from a tiny package, the new review of the InFocus IN10 will be of particular interest. It is hard to believe you can get this much light out of a 2.4 lb. projector, but InFocus has done it in a product we're proud to list has Highly Rated.more

Latest Epson Releases Looking Good

Well, we finally got the Epson Pro Cinema 1080 UB review done and posted. Another great achievement by Epson, a company that has definitely increased its focus on producing leading edge home theater projectors. This latest crop of releases from Epson far surpasses anything they've done in the past as far as price/performance is concerned.more

Epson Review To Post Friday

For everyone asking .... I plan to post the Epson Cinema 1080 UB review on Friday morning. Thanks for your patience.

Early Thoughts on Upcoming Reviews

Well, welcome to 2008! We hope you all survived the holidays. I came down with an unexpected bug that had me out of commission for a while. However, I'm back in the saddle and ready for the CES convention that starts Monday here in Las Vegas.more