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Projector News

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 2009:
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Blu-ray 3D Spec Finalized

Today the Blu-ray Disc Assn. approved specifications for delivering 3D content on Blu-ray discs.more

New 1080p Reviews

Several new home theater reviews are about to post....more

New Editor's Choice Awards

It's a tight horserace this year, but we've given four 1080p models our Editor's Choice Award.more

More 1080p News......

Epson finally announces formal price on the 8500 UB, and more reviews to come...more

JVC RS25 review posted

We've just posted the JVC RS25 review. More 1080p projectors are coming soon.more

More Review News

We are still testing the JVC RS25. As usual, JVC has produced another beautiful projector. However, the review will not be completed today as I had originally anticipated.more

1080p Shoot-out

We have just posted the shoot-out results of six 1080p home theater projectors released thus far this fall. Meanwhile, the Epson Home Cinema 8500UB is in review at the moment.more

Panasonic AE4000 Announced

Panasonic has announced the AE4000, at a price of $1,999. And our review of the Vivitek H1080FD has just been posted.more

Updated HT Review Schedule

We are currently working on several home theater projector reviews, including the Epson 8100, which is Epson's new entry level 1080p model priced at $1,599.more

Upcoming Home Theater Reviews

We are currently reviewing the Mitsubishi HC6800 and the BenQ W6000. These 1080p models are similar in specifications, and both carry MSRPs of $3,495.more

CEDIA Notes

The annual CEDIA trade show always happens in September, and it just wrapped up yesterday in Atlanta, GA. Many of the new home theater projectors for the fall season are shown at CEDIA for the first time.more

Upcoming Home Theater Reviews

Preliminary notes on a pre-production sample of the Mitsubishi HC3800 have just been posted. Once we get a final production sample, we will replace these notes with a full review. In addition, we currently have several new home theater projectors in review that have either been released or are about to be released.more

Mitsubishi HC3800 -- Smokin' Hot

Mitsubishi is about to announce a new 1080p home theater projector that will be one of the hottest selling home theater models of the fall season.more

Home Theater review news

By the end of this month we will have received advance samples of three or four new home theater projectors to be released at CEDIA on September 9. So we are busy reviewing projectors that we are not allowed to discuss yet.more

1080p goes under $1,000

The Vivitek H1080FD and the Optoma HD20, both just announced, are the first 1080p home theater projectors to come to market under $1,000.more

Improved Quote Request

We've made some improvements to our Get a Quote service. Previously you had to identify the projector you wanted and other projectors you would consider. With our new changes you can still identify the projector you want and if you would consider others, just check "I will consider equivalent projectors."

But most importantly, if you don't know what you want, just go to the next step and describe what you are trying to do and mention any concerns or questions you have.more
Topics: Site Changes

ProjectorCentral is seeking tech writers

Have you ever wanted to write for ProjectorCentral? Now may be your chance...more

3LCD vs. DLP Technology Comparison

It has been several years since we wrote an article comparing the benefits of LCD and DLP, so an update was long overdue. After working on it for several months, the revised and expanded version has now been posted on the home page.more

New Options Added to Feature Search

We just added 11 more search options to Feature Search. Just click More Options under the last column of check boxes to access them. Click Fewer Options to hide them. Hiding options does not disable them; however, clicking Start Over will. Use Comments below if you want to share your thoughts with others or use Send us Feedback if you want to offer suggestions.more
Topics: Site Changes

Epson Ensemble // Technology Article

Last week we had Epson install their Ensemble "all in one" home theater systems in one of our theater rooms.more

Reviews and Updates

We've just posted two new reviews. Actually, the Optoma HD8200 review has been finalized and reposted after a preliminary posting in March. Overall, a very solid projector, but not the most aggressively priced of the products Optoma has ever released. Those who own it are likely to love it.more

Infocomm and Upcoming Reviews

Infocomm is the largest projector trade show in the industry, and it happens next week in Orlando, Florida.more

Great Movie Projectors under $1000

How many of you are not really into full blown home theater, but instead want a cheap but very good portable movie projector you can set up whenever you want? In particular, do you need a portable projector for professional use, but one that delivers great video entertainment at home as well?more

Site Changes - Education Projectors

About a week ago we launched Education Projectors, a new section of our site that caters to the needs of educators. Elizabeth Dourley is hosting Education Projectors and will be responding to the needs of educators and offering insights in her blog the "Pondering Pixel". Click Send us Feedback at the top of the Education Projector page and she will respond to you.

Below are a few of the things that Education Projectors offers to educators:

1. Case Studies - real installations that highlight the problems and the solutions in using projection technology in an education setting.more

Sharp Z15000 and Epson News

The SharpVision Z15000 review is posted. If you don't see it yet on the home page, click Projector Reviews in the left column.

Big News ... Epson has released its new edition of Frame Interpolation. We will be installing it and testing it tomorrow. If you are an Epson owner in the USA waiting for this update, call Epson Product Support at 562-276-4394 for more information.

Sharp Z15000 review

Due to a nasty flu that hit me hard last night, I will not be able to finish the Sharp Z15000 review today has I had hoped. I am so dizzy I can barely sit in this chair to type this note. My apologies, as I know everyone is expecting it. I will do my best to get it done by tomorrow.

Evan

Coming reviews

Here's the latest scoop on the Home Theater and Education reviews we currently have in progress...more

Sharp Z15000

We are currently reviewing the Sharp Z15000. Overall, this is a fine looking projector that we're quite enthused about. During the course of the review several questions have popped up that we've forwarded to Sharp. We've found no technical problems, but we want to understand in more detail how the unit is programmed to operate in various modes. We are waiting for a response from Sharp. Asssuming that is forthcoming, we will get the Z15000 review posted either Friday or Monday afternoon.

Evan Powell
Editor

Reviews currently underway/scheduled

We've got several projects underway here. In the home theater world, we are taking another look at the Optoma HD8200 so we can finish up our assessment of that one. And the SharpVision Z15000 is expected to arrive shortly.

Now that prices on the Sanyo Z3000 have dropped below $2,000 with a mail in rebate, this model deserves another look as well. It currently represents an outstanding value for those who have light controlled viewing space and want the best possible 1080p picture under $2,000.more

Miscellaneous review status

The long-awaited review of the Epson 6100 was posted on Monday. This one takes the prize for the longest time we've ever spent reviewing a projector! It's a perfect projector for those who need a lot of light, and who are on a budget but still want 1080p performance.

Tomorrow afternoon we will post a review of the Stewart Studiotek 100, a perfectly neutral 1.0 gain white screen designed for professional use.more

Epson 6100 Review Coming on Monday

Everyone has been asking, so I just wanted to say that the long awaited review of the Epson Home Cinema 6100 will be posted on Monday afternoon. Thanks very much for your patience on this one.more

Site Changes

You may have noticed that we have been making changes to the site over the last 4 or 5 months in an effort to give you better coverage of emerging technologies and to simply make it easier to find things.

Recently we revamped the Projector Brands page and Feature Search and while we always expect a few complaints when we change things, we got more than expected with the last two. On behalf of ProjectorCentral, I apologize to those who took umbrage. We will try not to surprise you in the future, by posting a note here.more
Topics: Site Changes

Picos & Pockets

The projector market is expanding with a couple of new projector breeds - Pico and Pocket. The Pico projectors are the real pocket projectors as they are no bigger than your cell phone and they'll soon be appearing in every hand-held electronic device and probably in a few computers.

For you geeks out there, here's an interesting emerging application for pico technology.more

Upcoming Reviews

After some unexpected delays, we posted the review of the JVC RS10 and RS20 on Tuesday morning. These machines are relatively pricey, but worth the money for those who have the cash and are interested in the most refined, elegant image they can get. Due to their outstanding performance capability, they both get the Editor's Choice Award.more

Epson 6500/7500 and 6100 update

We've got a couple of updates on the Epson 6500/7500 and 6100 to report. First, as far as frame interpolation on the 6500/7500 models is concerned, Epson product management is now saying that an improved version of this feature will be available "shortly." By shortly, it sounds like they are thinking within another week or two. However, contrary to their initial plan, most users will need to send their projectors to an Epson service center to have them upgraded. Epson says that except in certain unique circumstances, it will not be downloadable as they had originally hoped.more

Editor's Choice Awards Announced

After spending a week with the JVC RS10 and RS20, we have decided to grant them both an Editor's Choice Award. These are great projectors, at price points of about $5,000 and $7,500 respectively. We could not decide which of the two represented the better value proposition, as the RS20 certainly delivers an incrementally better picture for the money, and the RS10 delivers an incrementally better picture than the lower priced competition. Essentially, you get what you pay for. The review will be done and posted by about the middle of the week.more

Editor's Choice candidates

Thanks to all of you who wrote in with your thoughts about FI and 2.35 screen format. It helps a lot to know what our readers are thinking.

One point of clarification. Contrary to what some readers may have understandably inferred from my comments on this page last week, the JVC RS10 and RS20 are still candidates for an Editor's Choice Award. We just try to give only one award in a given price range, and hence the big debate between the Panny AE3000 and the Epson 6500 UB. But the JVC units are priced higher, and we may very well feel they deserve special recognition as well. We are just now opening them up and getting our first look at them. We hope to have those reviews posted next week.more

Editor's Choice pending, new reviews coming

As some of you have noticed, we have not yet given an Editor's Choice Award in the 1080p category. The reason is ... well, we are in a holding pattern. We are waiting to see if Epson can fix the most annoying bugs in the Home Cinema 6500UB. The 6500 UB delivers a vibrant, high contrast, crowd-pleasing picture, no question about it. However, the initial defocusing problem was disturbing, and frame interpolation (FI) has never performed as well as it does on the Panasonic AE3000.more

6500 and AE3000 losing light output

We have just noticed that since our Epson 6500UB has 150 hours on it, and the Panasonic AE3000 has 200 hours on it, they are no longer delivering the same light output as they were when the lamps were fresh. That is no surprise, but what is intriguing is that they are losing light output at different rates.more

Testing in Progress

We have just received the modified version of the Epson 6100, so we should be able to report results of that testing by the beginning of next week. We anticipate that the modification done to these units will largely resolve the defocusing issue on the 6100/7100 as it has on the 6500/7500. But since these two series of products use different LCD panels, we want to test it to make sure.more

Screen Innovations and the Epson Saga Update

Last week we completed the review of the Screen Innovations Black Diamond II, which is a screen you can use with the room lights on. It works beautifully, as long as you use it in ambient light with a bright projector, and you are sitting in its sweetspot. If you have a dark viewing space, a traditional white or light gray screen will give the best results. Though the Black Diamond is more expensive than a conventional screen, it is inappropriate to compare them price-wise. They are apples and oranges products. Think of the Black Diamond and a good projector as a cheap substitute for a 100" plasma TV, and you'll have a better perspective on the price.more

Epson Enhancements and Upcoming Reviews

We are making progress in getting the focus issue on the new Epson models squared away. In our latest test, we decided to try running the 6500UB and the 6100 in high altitude mode (this mode makes the fan run faster to move more air through the projector).more

Issues with the Epson

In case you have not been tuning in lately, we've been trying to resolve an issue with the Epson 6500UB and 6100 before proceeding with the reviews. The issue is that they tend to fall out of focus during the first half hour of a viewing session, if they have been started up at room temperature. Epson maintains that this may occur during an initial break-in period, but that they will stabilize with time. We have been putting our test units through a series of power up and power down cycles, and putting some hours on them to see if the defocusing issue is resolved with normal use.more

Delayed Epson Reviews

We've been taking a close look at the Epson 6500 UB and the Epson 6100 in preparation for reviews of these two models. We delayed the reviews because of a phenomenon we identified first on the 6500 UB. The issue is that the projector tends to go out of focus over the first 30 minutes of viewing time. If it is sharply focused after initial start up, it will slowly lose its precise focus as it warms up, evidently due to heat expansion in the light engine. When we refocus it after about 30 minutes, it will then remain in focus for the duration of the viewing session.more

Troubleshooting Specific Problem

Just a quick update ... we received a second sample of the Epson 6500 UB as well as a 6100 yesterday. At this point we are in daily communication with Epson product management, trying to troubleshoot a specific problem that needs to be understood and resolved prior to reviewing the 6500 UB. It looks like this will take some time. Once we have all the facts together, we will be able to discuss it in detail. The 6500 UB review will be delayed until we get this worked out. Meanwhile, I think we can proceed with the 6100 review and get that posted by next week.

CES Impressions

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) just wrapped up yesterday in Las Vegas. All things considered it was a quieter show that usual. There was not a lot of pre-show buzz. And, to nobody's surprise, attendance was down noticeably from years past. However, that was all good for those of us who don't care for lines and crowds. It was easier to get around, and for that reason probably the most pleasant CES experience in memory.more

CES Rush and Delayed Review

Just a quick update from yesterday's posting on this page. We have requested a second sample of the 6500 UB from Epson, as the unit we have in house is manifesting some atypical behavior. This problem is not related to frame interpolation, which is indeed a weakness, but it is not the biggest problem we are concerned about. The 6500 UB review will be delayed until we are able to test a second unit. Since the CES rush is on top of all of us, it is a difficult time for vendors to coordinate delivery of a second unit. We will report more when we know more.

Competitive with the Best of 1080p

We are back in gear after some holiday downtime. Hope you had a safe and relaxing holiday season. As usual, our first week back entails a lot of CES Show meetings and activity. The show happens later this week, and we will be writing it up next week.

At the moment we are reviewing the Epson 6500 UB. Our plan was to get it done before CES, and that still may happen. But we are seeing a mechanical problem with our sample that may require us to call in a second unit, and that may delay things a bit.more