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Projectors... CRT, DLP.... Questions


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#1 of 42 OFFLINE   Jeff AW

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Posted February 12 2003 - 06:32 PM

I am really interested in getting a projector. ..and of course I have TONS of questions... I hope that someone here can help me out.

The room size is 15' x 19'.

Here are some long winded questions... Brains on Information overload.

CRT or DLP??? What is really better? I've been told a good CRT will give a better picture and be more expandable in the long run. Why? 8-9" Lens on a crt? Resolutions...resolutions...resolutions.. What the heck should I be looking for?

Line doubler/tripler/quad for CRT Only or for digital projectors as well? What impact does a progressive scan DVD versus a non-prog DVD have with one. Do I even need one?

Any good resources for projectors demystified?

Here is my goal. Very simple.

Play widescreen DVD's on a projector at around 100+ inches and have the best possible picture.

Any help would GREATLY be appreciated.
Jeff W.

#2 of 42 OFFLINE   Mike Matheson

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Posted February 12 2003 - 08:34 PM

Jeff,

CRT vs. DLP/LCOS/DILA/LCD should be reasonably easy for you to decide on once you're familiar with the differences. CRT units are generally BIG. And HEAVY. And expensive, if new. Though there are a lot of used units out (some very good units, in fact) that can be picked up inexpensively--if you know what you're looking at. CRT FPTV's also don't have much light output--so you would have to have a light controlled room, preferably with dark/non-reflective walls, ceiling, floor, etc. And then CRT units made need tweaking every so many months for convergence, etc. A 100" screen would be tough for a CRT, unless you have some major buck$.

Why would anyone use a CRT? Well, the images can be amazing. Blacks are black; colors can be outstanding; there can be quite a 3D effect in the image. A properly setup CRT FPTV in the right environment is pretty tough to beat. And again, there are some great values around right now on used gear.

The digital FPTV's, on the other hand, could easily give you a 100" image. For anywhere from $2000 (think Panasonic L300) up. Much less tweaking necessary after the initial setup. Blacks generally not as good as CRT. Usually much smaller units than CRT--easier to place (and hang).

What's your budget? For everything (screens [Stewart screens can be in the thousands], cabling, projector).

Are you thinking of putting the projector on the ceiling, on the back wall, or on a table? What will be the distance from your preferred mounting location to the screen? (this can determine if a given unit will project the size image you want without buying an expensive long-throw or short-throw lens)

To what degree can you control lighting in the room? What color is the room?

Will you only be using a DVD source? What about cable, HD signals, etc.?

Regarding progressive scan DVD players, some projectors can take a normal interlaced (non-progressive) signal and play with it as well as one of the goood progressive DVD players. For others, a progressive scan DVD player will be more important as your DVD source. You can wait on that decision until after you've selected your projector.

For a LOT more info on projectors, screens, etc., invest some time over at the AVS Forum, and look through some of the past threads here at HTF (if you haven't).

Despite the daunting array of options and info out there, with a little investigating you should wind up with some new toys that really blow your socks off.

Have fun,

Mike

#3 of 42 OFFLINE   Vince Maskeeper

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Posted February 13 2003 - 01:53 AM

YOu might try posting this question in DISPLAYS, or asking a moderator to move it there.
Need an introduction to home theater? Check out our FAQ and Primer!!

#4 of 42 OFFLINE   Craig Robertson

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Posted February 13 2003 - 03:51 AM

i'll second Mike's recommendation to seek info at AVS.

#5 of 42 OFFLINE   Jack Briggs

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Posted February 13 2003 - 04:41 AM

Yes, well while AVS is an excellent forum it's not as if HTF doesn't have its share of knowledgeable front-projection enthusiasts and excellent threads about the subject. So, since you're here why not run searches here?

#6 of 42 OFFLINE   JasonGarrett

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Posted February 13 2003 - 05:23 AM

There is a lot of good info at projectorcentral.com, too.

#7 of 42 OFFLINE   Jeff AW

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Posted February 13 2003 - 10:31 AM

Thanks for the info guys... and moving the thread to the proper location....

Searched a whole bunch here already. Will try out AVS and projector central later tonight to see the info they have there.

Mike to answer your questions..

My Budget 3-5k. Used/referbed equipment is OK too, just needs to be smartly bought. I'm considering this my starter. Later on if I want the 30K Runco projector, I'll invest... LOL With my 6th job I would need to pay for it, I then wouldn't have time to watch. Posted Image

Mounted on the back wall, so it would be about 18ft to the screen, whatever size the projector made would be fine.. At 18', I'm guessing 80-100 inches depending on the projector.

Lighting is the tough one. The room has got some windows.. Can get real dark as long as its night time. Posted Image Walls are cream colored. I assume lighting will be an issue for me.

Dvd's mostly, some VHS, maybe a sporting event or two, I don't see me watching TLC's Monster Garage on a 100' screen .. Posted Image Can care less about HDTV at this point, thats why I bought DVD's... Their quality is plenty fine for me.



Thanks for all the help...
Jeff W.

#8 of 42 OFFLINE   JasonGarrett

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Posted February 13 2003 - 02:58 PM

Looks like throw distance may be your primary deciding factor, unless you're willing to ceiling-mount the projector away from the rear wall. 18' is pretty far.

The Sanyo PLV-70 (~$5500 and BRIGHT) will project a minimum 108" diagonal from that distance. The Sony HS10 (~$2700) throws a minimum 117" 16:9 diagonal. Those are two of the longer-throw projectors.

#9 of 42 OFFLINE   Paul Jenkins

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Posted February 13 2003 - 06:39 PM

just as another data point for you, and to refute a previous poster a bit. I had a NEC XG85 CRT (8" guns) projecting a 120" 16:9 diag image onto a Draper M2500 (2.2 gain) screen and it was plenty bright enough. HDTV was absolutely jaw-dropping, DVD through the HTPC at 720p was stunning. There isn't a DLP/LCD that could touch the picture that it put out.

And then it broke. (blue tube went out)

And then I set out to try to fix it, trying to get a cost idea first, of what I was going to be set back, and taking it down from the ceiling (heavy!!).

Bottom line, very hard to fix(due to limited # of people who know what is going on with these units), out of warranty, and to fix would have cost $200-$1500 depending on what was wrong.

Instead, I sold it, as-is, to Curt Palme, who specializes in fixing CRTs and selling them VERY reasonably to people who enjoy them. Curt gave me a very fair amount of money for the broken projector, and is actually arranging to have it picked up by a shipping company. Check AVSForum for info on Curt if you are interested in CRT, he is a WEALTH of knowledge, and will soon have a fixed-up NEC XG85 that will be for sale I'm sure!

I decided on a Sony HS10 for the replacement projector. I will lose picture quality, but given my personal situation, I like having something in warranty, something small and easy to ship/move/setup. CRTs are a lot of work, are loud, and require a lot of patience and learning. The picture is great, but the DLPs and LCDs are coming closer each year, and at some point people like me just like to sit back, grab a beer, and watch a film Posted Image

Good luck!
Paul
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#10 of 42 OFFLINE   Jeff AW

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Posted February 14 2003 - 10:36 AM

I saw an ebay auction of his and I emailed him for his 22 page document on CRT'S... I just thumbed through it yesterday, some really good reading in there....

Crt's scare me a bit. I'm the kinda guy that would go TWEAK happy and never enjoy watching a movie again until it was properly "tweaked". I would drive my wife nuts, she actually enjoys watching movies. My wife's only concern with one is that it doesn't have "screen" door effect... She saw a Sharp when we're at the local HIFI store and said she hated it... Thats the only WAF I have.
Jeff W.

#11 of 42 OFFLINE   Robert James Clark

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Posted February 14 2003 - 01:40 PM

Well, as a CRT and a DLP owner, I can tell you from my perspective that you have good reason to be a little afraid of CRT's. They require a difficult original setup (though you can certainly do it yourself).
My CRT (and old Ampro that I got for $500) requires a minor convergence tweak at least once a night, but that is REALLY not the norm, most are stable for months. Once aligned the picture is truly beautiful.

My wife has similar reactions to screendoor, she hates it. She refuses to own any LCD projector for this reason, but she likes my DLP.

#12 of 42 OFFLINE   David_Jr

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Posted February 15 2003 - 11:12 AM

Robert, what DLP do you have and does it have the rainbow effect on anyone?
Dave

#13 of 42 OFFLINE   David Tolsky

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Posted February 16 2003 - 10:17 AM

Jeff,

DLP projectors have gotten amazingly good over the last few years. The newest generation Texas Instruments HD2 chip(Mustang) projectors will give CRT a run for their money. And they are going to get better and cheaper in a few more years. I am finally going to take the plunge in about a month. I know you are not ready to think about HDTV for now but you should give it some consideration. HDTV looks great using front porjection. You can at least be READY for it with the proper cables in your installation conduit when you're ready to go. Then you just have to connect to the receiver when you're ready. Again as all the others have stated, check out AVS as frequent installers and manufacturers hang out there.

#14 of 42 OFFLINE   Jeff AW

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Posted February 16 2003 - 12:10 PM

For the size and weight and less calibration issues, I think I am going to get a DLP projector... ...and there was ALOT of good argument for a CRT. I guess the hunt is on for a reasonably priced DLP (if they exist), Anyone got suggestions, something with component and svideo in as well as HDTV capabilities.

Do line doubles and triplers work, do you even need one with a DLP projector? How do DVD's work with a DLP projector?
Jeff W.

#15 of 42 OFFLINE   David Tolsky

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Posted February 16 2003 - 12:25 PM

The first thing you need to do is figure out your budget. You may need installation and a screen in your budget.
Todays major players in the DLP market are (in no particular order) Sharp, Marantz, Yamaha, Sim2Seleco, Dwin, Toshiba, Dreamvision and Infocus. They are all going to include some type of video scaler or processor in the unit, claiming you only need to feed 480i (regular interlaced DVD)into the projector and let the projector do the rest. Some, like the Marantz and Infocus include the much acclaimed Farouja DCDi circuit deinterlacer that has a very good reputation. It is up to you to decide what looks best to your eye and what works within your budget. Good Luck!

#16 of 42 OFFLINE   Paul Jenkins

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Posted February 16 2003 - 06:43 PM

JeffAW, why don't you provide a budget for us. We love spending others money Posted Image
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Paul Jenkins
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#17 of 42 OFFLINE   Jeff AW

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Posted February 17 2003 - 10:17 AM

Lets go budget.. In and around 3K Give or take.. I am open to used/remans, new, etc, whatever works.. Posted Image

Jeff
Jeff W.

#18 of 42 OFFLINE   David Tolsky

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Posted February 17 2003 - 11:56 AM

Well, first of all, forget about a 1st or 2nd generation DLP native 16 x 9 panel projector from Sharp, Marantz, or Infocus. For 3K your looking at either a used CRT, maybe an LCD or a minor league older DLP with a 4:3 chip. In all honesty, with a budget of 3K I would consider a good qualtiy HDTV widescreen RPTV or direct view. There are some projectors out there in the $2K-$3K range, ah, wait a minute, you may well be a Plus Piano kind of guy. Please check out the new Plus Piano projector. Many people claim it has the performance of a projector twice it's price. Also, definitely look at the NEC HT1000. It's getting raves from people at AVS and is I think $3K

#19 of 42 OFFLINE   JasonGarrett

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Posted February 18 2003 - 02:18 AM

The Sharp PG-M20X is a DLP under $3000. The two LCDs you should look at are the Sony HS10 and the Panasonic L300u.

#20 of 42 OFFLINE   Andy TeBockhors

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Posted February 20 2003 - 09:00 AM

As a sort-of newbie who hasn't bought his 1st projector yet, what about the Infocus X1? It's a DLP projector that can be had for around $1500 and gets some pretty good reviews. Anyone love or hate this machine... I'm in the market too, but $3K is a bit stiff for me (well, for my wife.)Posted Image