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Optoma H30 better than Z2 or L500?


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#1 of 21 OFFLINE   SeanBurnley

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Posted April 29 2004 - 08:59 AM

It's been expressed elsewhere that the DLP technology of the H30 makes it a better display than the Z2 or L500. I thought the 1280x720 resolution would out-perform the H30's 800x450 resolution (its widescreen resolution). The Optoma has a 6-segment, 4x color wheel too. Is DLP that much better than and LCD projector with higher resolution? Comments?

#2 of 21 OFFLINE   DuWayne

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Posted April 29 2004 - 09:56 PM

The H30 can't put out a better picture that the Z2 or L500, due to the fact that its not an HD projector. So this augument isn't really between DLP or LCD, it's between SD and HD displays. Both the Z2 and the L500 have native Wide-Screen support also, while the H30 isn't.

#3 of 21 OFFLINE   Jeff_M

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Posted May 07 2004 - 08:08 AM

About a month ago I was debating between purchasing the Sanyo Z2 and the Optoma H30. The Sanyo was very tempting, offering a substantial increase in resolution over the Optoma. What it came down to for me was viewing preference. I watch about 90% DVD and 10% HDTV. For DVD's the Optoma H30 resolves 100% of the resolution offered by the 480p format. So when it came down to comparing these two projectors, there were more signifant factors than resolution. The contrast ratio and black level of the H30 trumps that of the Z2 (these qualities give the picture depth and realism). Thanks to a 6-segment color wheel, saturation and color accuracy is supposed to be amongst the best of any projector under $5k. By most reports, the H30 looks significantly better on DVD's compared to the Z2. I went ahead and purchased the Optoma and after calibrating with my AVIA disc, I am honestly blown away by the image. The picture while watching Comcast HDTV is also awesome. Had I not previously seen HDTV on a higher resolution projector, I would have never guessed I was giving anything up with the Optoma. I can only imagine what it looks like on the Z2. Bottom line is, you'll be making compromises with either projector. If you plan on watching primarily HDTV, the Sanyo Z2 seems like an awesome projector (heck, once football season rolls around, I'll most likely be kicking myself for not going with the Sanyo). The fact that the H30 streets for ~$600 than the Z2 makes it even easier to live with my decision.

-By the way, if you really want to learn everything you could possibly know about projectors and other display devices, head over to the AVSforum. These are the bastards that got me hooked on projection.

#4 of 21 OFFLINE   DaveGTP

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Posted May 08 2004 - 07:52 AM

The extra resolution will benefit you for HD and be theoretically a drawback for DVDs (since upscaling is needed). I say theoretically because I've heard very little complaining about upscaling artifacts.

I don't see why people buy LCDs for DVD watching unless rainbows on DLP are a problem, honestly. The contrast ratios are better on DLP, there's no vertical banding. The only real anti-DLP is those minority that see rainbows (like me, but it's only on white/black scenes), or get headaches from the DLP (an even smaller minority).

I can see getting an LCD for the higher resolution, for HDTV. Although I would rather have more contrast in the image and less pixels than vice versa.
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#5 of 21 OFFLINE   DuWayne

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Posted May 08 2004 - 02:30 PM

I'm tired of people complaing about things they only know by reading forums. I have a Z2 and have compared it to DLPs and other LCDs in its price range. The Z2 blows most away by a long shot. This whole thing about DVDs and LCDs is just BS. I watch EVERYTHING on my Z2, SD and HD content. What the hell is an "upscaling Artifact!"

Pick up something that can display everything, limiting yourself can be foolish. As I can't speak to the L500, but I suspect the same performance. Don't worry about black levels or Contrast, as you should be fine with the Z2. I've had some real hard-asses at my place, and ALL were shocked when they saw the quality of the display. Hell, some went and ordered one!

#6 of 21 OFFLINE   Chris PC

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Posted May 08 2004 - 03:46 PM

I doubt scaling is much of an issue. Going from the AE100 to the L200 I did notice a bit better contrast. My next PJ will be either an AE500, H30 or H56. Doubt I'll go with the H30 or H56 because I'm not DLP friendly, but I'll check them out just for curiousity sake. H56 is at least a slight step above DVD resolution, in fact higher than the Panny L300 or Sanyo Z1 , rather than the slight drop in resolution of the H30. Again, it all depends on whether you like what you see. I agree that the black level and contrast of LCD's isn't that bad. Once I see the H30 or H56 for myself, I'll decide.

Actually, the H30 is just a curiosity, and the H56 is a gazillion dollars as far as I can see.

99.9% sure I'm going with a PT500 Posted Image
Going from projector to flatscreen for a while.... :P

#7 of 21 OFFLINE   Jack Gilvey

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Posted May 09 2004 - 02:31 AM

Quote:
The H30 can't put out a better picture that the Z2 or L500, due to the fact that its not an HD projector.

"Can't". Interesting. So resolution is really the only concern in picture quality?
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#8 of 21 OFFLINE   Jeff_M

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Posted May 09 2004 - 07:18 AM

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#9 of 21 OFFLINE   Jeff_M

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Posted May 09 2004 - 07:19 AM

Quote:
"Can't". Interesting. So resolution is really the only concern in picture quality?

I KNOW this is not necessarily the case as my H30 has less resolution than my previous projector and looks a good deal better. Even while watching HD. Will you believe the used car salesman that tells you that his Ford Mustang is faster than a BMW M3 because it has a V8? Be careful not to get too caught up in a numbers game.

#10 of 21 OFFLINE   DuWayne

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Posted May 09 2004 - 03:35 PM

You know, Its nice to defend your purchase and all....BUT, the FACT of the matter is the H30 (being a non-HD projector) CAN'T display a resolution higher than any other HD project (ex. Z2, L500, etc.).

Ture, that resolution dosen't ALWAYS equate to picture quality. That said, I rather have the "likely potential," than no potential at all. Which references my previous statement about limiting ones self.

As far as a H30 looking better than an older projector....I believe it to be safe to assume that you are comparing it to another non-HD projectors, which is fine. You should compare apples and apples. You shouldn't compare Apples and Oranges by way of Non-HD vs HD, unless price is an issue.

#11 of 21 OFFLINE   Curt Luther

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Posted May 09 2004 - 03:40 PM

Duwayne.....Thank you for speaking up about the Z2 and forum reviews. I too have one and have set it up on a temporary basis to determine what screen to order and I have to say that I am simply blown away at the picture quality watching dvd's. I agree not to limit yourself on choices. I must say that I am a VERY picky person when it comes to picture quality and I have not seen any "Artifacts" and that is on a plain painted wall. I just wanted to chime in saying how happy I am with the Z2.

#12 of 21 OFFLINE   DuWayne

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Posted May 09 2004 - 03:43 PM

Thanks Curt...I was begining to think I was the only Z2 owner?! :b

#13 of 21 OFFLINE   Paul_SM

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Posted May 09 2004 - 08:02 PM

As a suggestion from someone who hasn't got a barrel to push. (I don't own any of these models) You need to deside what you are going to use the Projector for the most. Watching HDTV, (something that we will probably never see over here) DVD, TV etc.

The other is the environment you are placing the projector in. Eg lighting, space etc.

The main advantage the h30 would have over the Z2 will be it's black levels (if you can see the difference). The Z2 has the rez. Both projector formats have other advantages and disadvantages and both camps will argue till the sun goes down over which is best.

No one can tell you. You have to deside your self. You might find even with a 4x colour wheel that you still see rainbows. Or that the extra Black levels help out because of ambient light problems.

To me the level of contrast is more important than the rez as I notice that more, but then I don't have hdvt.

If you can't get to trial both projectors then I'm sure the fact that there are firm supporters in both camps suggests that what ever your choise you wont go to far wrong.

Goodluck.


#14 of 21 OFFLINE   DaveGTP

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Posted May 10 2004 - 06:07 AM

I did say "theoretically" upscaling artifacts - I haven't witnessed it myself. From all accounts, projectors are better about this than many other display technologies.

If you aren't going to watch HDTV, i.e., this is a DVD watching machine, there isn't a lot of point to higher resolution. People get really hung up on the resolution and bash on lower-res units. The full resolution number for DVDs is 720x480. There's no point to higher resolution than this for DVD watching. If you're watching a lot of HD, than I guess it makes sense (we watch TV very very rarely). I had an HD receiver and sold it because we don't watch enough TV to make it worthwhile - HD downscaled a bit still looks very very good - better than DVDs.

Personally, I find the black levels even at the DLP 2000:1 contrast ratio as sometimes lacking, and images of darker movies (like LOTR) definitely lacking on the LCD RPTVs I looked at in store (cranking down the brightness/contrast/etc from torch mode).
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#15 of 21 OFFLINE   DuWayne

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Posted May 10 2004 - 06:39 AM

OK, again, still don't know why you would want to limit yourself. On top of that, I have seen a difference between a DVD playing on a Non-HD projector and a HD projector /w a HD-DVD (Samsung HD931 DVI). Granted that you can't ADD to the source material (except in the case of using DVI vs Componet), but great scaling prowess either in the 931 or said projector can make the 480i DVD look great.

Also, I know I would be Pissed to all Hell if I was talked into geting a Non-HD projector because someone told me it doesn't matter with DVD playback. Then Fall comes around and Blu-ray DVD Players hit the market. Posted Image . The point is not to Limit yourself, if you can afford it.

#16 of 21 OFFLINE   Jeff_M

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Posted May 10 2004 - 08:13 AM

The Optoma should be able to handle blue ray, just as it handles HDTV right now. You will be limiting yourself in terms of resolution, in favor of better contrast/blacks/picture dimensionality. If you go for the Z2 like I almost did, you will be doing just the opposite. So either projector will be a compromise when compared with the other. In home demos might be the only way for you to find out if the H30 gives up too much ground to the Z2 in terms of HDTV.

#17 of 21 OFFLINE   DuWayne

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Posted May 10 2004 - 09:17 AM

Define handle...Why would you buy a Blu-ray DVD if you can't display the native resolution of the player?

"...in favor of better contrast/blacks/picture dimensionality." in what, numbers on paper. No one wins that war. I don't even know what you mean by "picture dimensionality", but oh well.

I don't feel that there is a need to debate this, due to the original author hasn't posted since the start. If he needs more info or is still on the fence, I guess we could continue.

Note: The L500 or Z2 would be great choices in the ~$1900 price range. The "Black level" argument is redundant and subjective. I can promise you, that with at least the Z2 (I don't have the L500), you won't complain about "Black Levels."

#18 of 21 OFFLINE   DaveGTP

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Posted May 10 2004 - 09:39 AM

Maybe you won't complain about black levels if you're watching Finding Nemo! LOTR, Fight Club, Matrix, or something else with a lot of dark scenes will show the weaknesses of digital projectors. Even 2000:1 isn't quite satisfactory for dark scenes. Panny's ED plasma with 3000:1 and better black details (I forget how black details are measured, nits?) is about the closest to good that I've seen.
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Gideon - "Probably. Screw them."
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#19 of 21 OFFLINE   Jeff_M

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Posted May 10 2004 - 10:20 AM

DuWayne,
Maybe we scared off the original poster? I have to admit, I am very curious to see if the Z2 is as good or better than the H30 with DVD's. I bet it looks great with Hi Def. I notice a big difference between HDTV and DVD on my H30. You know why this is? When describing the improvements of HDTV over DVD, there's more than just resolution to think about. In case you were curious, dimensionality is an image attribute that is very dependant on shadow detail, contrast, blacks. An image can be bright and colorful, even stunning, without having dimensionality. Don't believe me? Walk into any local Hi Fi store and compare the images from an LCD TV to a CRT based set. Live anywhere near Portland, OR? You're welcome to stop by for a demo. I'd love to see your Z2.

#20 of 21 OFFLINE   DuWayne

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Posted May 10 2004 - 11:12 AM

Don't live near Portland...In Northern Cali., on my way to Texas. BUT, for reference, I did compare my Z2 to a Runco 710 (I believe thats the number) and didn't see anywhere near $17,000 worth of difference. Unless, the more money you pay the larger and louder the projector gets.





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