All Infocus X1 technical issues (merged thread)

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Matt Mediate, May 21, 2003.

  1. Matt Mediate

    Matt Mediate Extra

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    Ok, I just bought an infocus X1 from best buy. After reading a LOT about this and the Sanyo Z1 I decided to go with the X1 only because I could physically pick it up at the store. (UPS and I have a slight difference in philosophy at the moment) Anyway, after reading a lot of reviews and what not, I was under the impression that only a SMALL percentage of people were sensitive to rainbow effects on DLP projectors like the X1. Including myself, Three people have seen this so far and all three have noticed the rainbows. Am I doing something wrong? Is there anyway you folks know of to at least reduce the rainbows? It is really noticeable when dark images are on the screen. I really don't want to take this back. Those ass clowns at best buy are gonna tax me for that restocking fee nonsense. Can one of you knowlegdeable cats drop some science on me? Please?!?!? - Cheers, Matt

    p.s. I'm using a da-lite 96" screen
     
  2. John Rheaume

    John Rheaume Auditioning

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    Matt,

    I can't give you any science on this, but maybe some practical suggestions. I think the rainbow issue affects people in degrees. I imagine practically everyone will notice, at least, an occasional rainbow from a 2X color wheel machine. It's a matter of how often and how severe.

    I've had the X1 for just a week. I do notice the occasional rainbow but it doesn't bother me. Some tips I can offer:

    1. Try to avoid having light behind you, if you can't avoid it then don't turn your head towards the light, then back to the screen.

    2. Try taking in the whole picture without a lot of eye movement. This can take some effort when getting used to such a large screen.

    3. Settings to contrast and brightness may or may not help. My settings are 71 for contrast and 63 for brightness. Since going to these settings, rainbows seem to have diminished in both frequency and intensity.

    Maybe it's just a matter of adjusting to the thing or maybe it's just a matter of relaxing and not concentrating on rainbows and such, but the more I watch, the more comfortable with the pj I become.

    I hope in some way my experience will help you with the X1. Good luck.
     
  3. Fred Seger

    Fred Seger Stunt Coordinator

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    Try a Neutral Density glare filter. which will reduce light output and also rainbow effects. or try a gray screen, which has about the same effect as a filter. or a larger screen. ( if possible of course ). When i got my X1, I never really saw rainbows but would get headaches after watching a while. When I moved to a bigger screen. it was less, and after a about 20 hrs viewing - doesn't happen at all.
     
  4. David Barteaux

    David Barteaux Stunt Coordinator

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    I found that you get used to the projector somehow and the rainbows (which don't really distract me) diminish the more you use it.
    One thing I noticed is that I don't see any rainbows on animation or computer generated movies.
     
  5. Michael Langdon

    Michael Langdon Stunt Coordinator

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    Does anyone else notice the brightness uniformity problems with the X1? Two units so far have demonstrated the exact same brightness uniformity problems in that the lower right and upper left corners of the image are brighter (hot spots). Of course it is not noticeable with 4:3 material, but when watching letterbox (DVD and projector in 4:3 mode), these brighter spots are noticeable in the black bars and begin to interfere with the picture on 1.85:1 material (less so on 2.35:1 because of the size of the hot spot).

    Also, a thin outline (ring, etc.) is seen around the screen. In these brighter lower left and upper right corners the outline is more noticeable. Outside of these areas, the outline is darker but still there. I am guessing this is part of the panel itself.

    Mike
     
  6. Parker Clack

    Parker Clack Schizophrenic Man
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    Michael:

    Who knows. What does Infocus say?

    Have you tried setting the projector to 16 x 9 mode when watching letterboxed/widescreen material to see if that makes a difference?

    Parker
     
  7. Michael Langdon

    Michael Langdon Stunt Coordinator

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    Parker,

    I ordered my X1 from Amy at Infocus. I mentioned to her that the evaluation unit I had suffered from the brightness uniformity I described. She stated that she had not heard of this problem before. I was willing to purchase a new unit from Infocus because of the return policy Amy described and a feeling that maybe the evaluation unit suffered from the problem because it had seen high use/handling.

    Well, my new X1 arrived and the picture looked identical to the evaluation unit. I have also located a review of the X1 where the reviewer noticed the same brightness uniformity problems. I am in the process of locating this review again. Nothing I do seems to alleviate the bright spot (brightness, contrast, changing modes from presentation to video) without adversely affecting the picture and making it unwatchable.

    Maybe I am too picky or expecting too much for this projector and the price range.

    Mike
     
  8. Michael Langdon

    Michael Langdon Stunt Coordinator

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    I have included the review dealing with brightness uniformity. The reviewer says the brightness uniformity is average with a noticeable glow along the left edge. The lower left is where I notice a bright or glowing spot. The upper right is also affected.

    X1 Review
     
  9. Stephen Dodds

    Stephen Dodds Second Unit

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    Both the X1s I have had exhibit the same uniformity problem. However, one a masked 16:9 screen it doesn't bother me.

    Steve
     
  10. JakeMcM

    JakeMcM Stunt Coordinator

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    try a polarizing filter, either circular polarizing or linear polarizing, they have some cheap ones on EBAY I recommend Hoya, I have heard people say this corrects uniformity problems and even rainbows. Don't pay more than $40 bucks for one. They are neutral density so they shouldn't mess with the color though they do reduce the brightness some.
     
  11. JakeMcM

    JakeMcM Stunt Coordinator

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    try a linear or circular polarizing filter. pretty cheap ($30 bucks) and should work, I think you need a 62mm, try it out before you take it back, the X1's are a steal.
     
  12. RANDY FISHER

    RANDY FISHER Second Unit

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    "I found that you get used to the projector somehow and the rainbows (which don't really distract me) diminish the more you use it."

    That's exactly what I experienced. Now I am just loving the big screen FP experience.

    Randy
     
  13. John Rheaume

    John Rheaume Auditioning

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    Mike

    This is a documented weakness of the InFocus X1 (In the review you have linked and in at least one more I have seen as well). There are things you can do to minimize the effect, primarily having black borders appropriate to the aspect ratio; Duvetyne tape and black felt are your friends. Avoid ambient light; with all projectors, the darker you can make your room, the better the picture will look.

    Digital projectors are not for everyone. They all have their own strengths and shortcomings. You have to determine what compromises you are willing to make and if you can compensate for them with some other aspect of your setup. Perhaps this is not the projector for you or perhaps even a front projector doesn't make sense for you at all.
    You didn't mention what you're working with for a screen. Does it have black borders? What aspect ratio is it? What size screen do you have? How do you have the projector mounted? What is the distance between screen and projector? The answer to these questions are all pertinent to minimizing the effect that bothers you.

    I think it would be a shame to ditch the X1 before knowing that you have gotten the most out of it that you can. The quality is exceptionally good for the price you paid and the warranty that comes with it. Then there are some compromises you just may not be able to live with.

    Maybe with a little more information about your particular setup, someone can come up with a solution that will help you resolve the effect so that you can satisfactorily co-exist with your X1. I hope all turns out well for you because this unit is such a bargain. For me, I'm THRILLED with the price/performance ratio of this projector.
     
  14. ChadLB

    ChadLB Screenwriter

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    What types of screen are you using with the X1?
     
  15. Michael Langdon

    Michael Langdon Stunt Coordinator

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    John,

    Thank you for your reply. I am using a Da-Lite model B Matte White pull down screen. Distance from screen to projector is approximately 10 ft. The projector is not ceiling mounted but rather mounted low. The screen is 60" X 60". With the small black edges along the side, the width is more like 58.5". I am projecting roughly a 73-74" diagonal. Seating distance from screen is approximately 9 feet. I think a projector would work for me because I have had a NEC LT240 (higher price than X1) in my home thanks to a good friend. I do not need the higher resolution of the LT240. I have no problems with pixel structure/screen door at my seating distance. I thought the X1 would give me what I needed at a much lower price. The LT240 does not suffer from this brightness uniformity problem. I have also had a chance to see a Dell 2100 (comparable price)in action. With factory defaults or user settings it does not have the brightness uniformity issues either. I chose the X1 over the Dell for zoom. However, at this point, the Dell has the better picture. I would appreciate any help given. At this point, I am ready to send the projector back.
     
  16. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    I have merged these threads dealing with technical aspects of this projector into this single thread. Please discuss all issues here.
     
  17. John Rheaume

    John Rheaume Auditioning

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    Mike,

    Just out of curiosity, have you tried the overscan? If so did that have any affect on the edge brightness uniformity?

    Is what you are getting an overly bright wedged shape along the lower left edge about 1/2" at the widest part? If so, what I do is zoom that area into the black border. I'm using a DIY screen with 16:9 AR and black tape 2.5" borders all 4 sides. It completely goes away. I realize this is a compromise, but it's one I can tolerate. I haven't noticed the brightness issue anywhere else on the image.

    Try boosting the contrast and brightness say c=71 and B=63. Run the color temp at cool.

    From other X1 threads, it seems you have 30 days to try different things. True?

    Hopefully something helps. Otherwise, the Dell 2100 may be a better fit for you.

    John
     
  18. Tim Glover

    Tim Glover Lead Actor

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    Question regarding the component input on the X1. Here's the text from the Infocus website:

    "Computer (VGA 15-pin HDDSUB female); video (S-Video 6-pin mini DIN, component RCA through S-Video adapter, and composite video RCA); audio (3.5mm mini-jack)"

    Does this mean the component input is not a pure component input? Not sure what that means when it says, "component input through S-video adapter".

    Thanks. [​IMG]
     
  19. Michael Langdon

    Michael Langdon Stunt Coordinator

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    John,

    I spent time trying the changes to contrast and brightness you suggested. The brightness in the black bars has become less of an issue now. However, the outline of the panel in the upper right is still a problem. No adjustment to brightness and contrast affects this area. It looks like light leakage/spill to me in an unwanted area. I could push this off the top of the screen but that is a compromise I am unwilling to make. The picture is excellent on the X1. I could probably live with the brighter areas in the black bars. Of course it is more noticeable in a completely dark room. Ambient light hides the problem to some degree. The problem is less noticeable on 1.85:1 movies and more noticeable on 2.35:1 because of the black bar size and the size of the bright area (lower left quadrant). Yes, I have 30 days to decide. I have already started the process of returning the X1 (waiting on RMA # from Infocus - 24 to 48 hrs response time).

    What I am seeing isn't terrible but it is hard to accept even for a $1000 projector.

    Mike
     
  20. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Michael,

    Are you referring to light spray? ANY 4:3 digital projector that is used in 16:9 mode will exhibit light spray unless an anamorphic lens is used to squeeze the image. Unfortuntely, an anamorphic lens will cost more than the projector in this case. It is not possible to completely turn off the unused portion of the panel.
     

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