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Who owns a Panny AE700 projector?


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20 replies to this topic

#1 of 21 OFFLINE   Dick

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Posted January 02 2005 - 06:26 AM

I have a budget of just over two grand to replace my ailing 32" Toshiba, and I am considering a projector as an alternative to an LCD (with its narrow viewing angle) or plasma (which still doesn't quite look good enough to me for the price). I have a seen a few projectors demonstrated in high-end stores that blew my socks off but cost (three years ago) roughly ten or fifteen grand. My viewing area is fairly small- 16x11' - and I like having all my machinery behind my audience, so I have always run 16-20' of SVHS and audio cables from the rear to the front. In researching possible new systems, I see the Panny can quite easily be set up well behind an audience because it has a bright output plus a 2x zoom lens, which could eliminate the need for ceiling mount and also focus a narrower beam for more consistent edge-to-edge image quality. I could dispense with long cable runs. The bulb is rated for 3000 hours. The price is good.

My questions, for anyone who owns one: I do not need a 120" image. 60 or 70" is fine for this viewing space. In order to achieve this small an image, it appears I cannot go further back than 16-18'. How bright and sharp a picture might I expect, and how is the black level? Is the cooling fan noisy enough so that my audiences will be distracted by it from behind during quiet movie passages? Is there a crapload of rocket-scientist-type calibration involved? Where do I look for a decent economical screen, and what type would I need for this area to achieve the brightest image while also allowing the widest viewing angles with minimal loss of brightness?

Thanks to anyone in advance for information!

#2 of 21 OFFLINE   Brad E

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Posted January 02 2005 - 07:30 PM

First off, I highly recommend the 700.
I sit 11 or 12' back from a 110" screen. Picture quality is so good there is no way I would consider going smaller.

Currently, the unit is about a foot and a half away from my head. I can hear it, but it is very quiet. I have never noticed it while watching a movie.
This is a temporary setup though, I will be moving it farther back.
As for calibration, I would suggest visiting the AVS forums. There are a couple of huge threads with loads of info on tweaking and setup.
Vertical banding is the main drawback of this unit. Tweaking will greatly reduce or eliminate this though. I only see in certain scenes on some movies.
No one who has viewed my unit has ever mentioned seeing it.

For a screen, I used blackout cloth stretched over a wooden frame that I made using 1x3 pine. Total cost was about $60 CDN.

#3 of 21 OFFLINE   Oren Paul

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Posted January 03 2005 - 02:55 AM

I use the old L-500 Panasonic and 1). Black looks black 2). I see no screen door effect with a 92" screen. 3). The picture is plenty bright on low lamp mode. 4). I here the fan only when I turn off my system, of course I am listening for it at that time to make sure the bulb is beeing cooled at shutdown.

Get as large a screen as you can comfortably fit into your viewing area. My only regret (a very small one) is I could have gone with a larger screen.

The 700 is considered a better product than the 500.

#4 of 21 OFFLINE   LaMarcus

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Posted January 04 2005 - 04:25 AM

I have the 500 and love it. I will be going bigger in screen size (currently 100"). What's the measurements of a 110" screen?

I only see veritcal banding when I'm playing my xbox, only because the brightness and contrast are way up. The only complaint I have with this unit is my reads are severly saturated to the point of bleeding. It's only reduced when I turn the color waaay down. But then the rest of the picture suffers from it. I guess this is what red push is?

#5 of 21 OFFLINE   Greg Hoffman

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Posted January 04 2005 - 05:07 AM

LaMarcus,

As far as your "bleeding reds' go, have you gone in the advanced settings menu and tried the the individual color brightness, contrast settings? Also play these against "Color Temp". I am sure you can get rid of "red push". Also check your source for red pushing.

#6 of 21 OFFLINE   LaMarcus

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Posted January 05 2005 - 01:04 AM

I was thinking about that, I fooled around with it a little bit, but I'm gonna give it a serious go round with VE to minimize the red. My sources are HD and DVD I've never had the problem before until the projector.

#7 of 21 OFFLINE   Parker Clack

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Posted January 05 2005 - 07:19 AM

LaMarcus:

Definitely get VE or Avia out and get all your settings done. It addresses such things as bleeding colors. Make sure you have your projector up and running for about 30 minutes before you make any changes though. The difference will astound you.

Dick:

With the size of screen you are going for the AE 700 is going to blow your socks off in all areas from picture clarity and definition to great color detail.

If you don't want to mess with making your own screen send an email to David Giles with Carada and he will fix you up with just want you need.

Parker

"I tried to get my medical records from the company but they say they

are confidential and can only be released to other insurance companies,

pharmaceutical​ reps, suppliers of medical equipment and for some

reason the RNC."
 


#8 of 21 OFFLINE   ericSchirm

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Posted January 05 2005 - 11:22 PM

Parker Clack- Could you recommend a 110" screen for around $150-$200? I was going to DIY but I might be able to swing for a cheap screen.

#9 of 21 OFFLINE   Parker Clack

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Posted January 05 2005 - 11:34 PM

Eric:

With you budget I would definitely go the DIY route. There are lots of various threads that have been written up by other forum members that will give you lots of great info on their own DIYs.

In particular Ron-P has built a really nice one and I would look up threads by our own Neil Joseph has he has his own DIY screen. Both have gotten really great results.

"I tried to get my medical records from the company but they say they

are confidential and can only be released to other insurance companies,

pharmaceutical​ reps, suppliers of medical equipment and for some

reason the RNC."
 


#10 of 21 OFFLINE   BrianKR

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Posted January 06 2005 - 01:00 AM

Quote:
What's the measurements of a 110" screen?


54 x 96 = 110" screen

#11 of 21 OFFLINE   Elijah

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Posted January 06 2005 - 06:45 AM

Brad,

Could you possibly take a picture of the VB on the AE700 and post it. I know you have to look for it, and I have read (parts of) the posts on AVS about tweaking the AE700, but I am in the middle of an in home tryout of an Infocus SP500 and the VB is really killing me.

There are no huge posts for eliminating this like there is for the AE700, narry a solid review actually.

So I am very interested in seeing what this PJ can look like.

Rather I would love to try one out in my house, next to the other two (I am currently testing a SP4805, and SP5000), but I cannot find a "risk free" place to purchase one from where I can return in 30days w/o penalty.

I would be very interested in seing some performance pics as well as your general impressions.

Thanks in advance.
"To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentation of their women"

#12 of 21 OFFLINE   Dick

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Posted January 06 2005 - 03:55 PM

Thanks for the information so far. My problem is that there is no place I can go to see one of these demonstrated - all anyone in Maine has on display are LCD's and Plasmas. So, I have to ask for opinions.

New questions:

I am sure that good quality anamorphic DVD's look delightful when projected on 80-120" screens. What about Non-anamoprhic? What about self-made DVD's from satellite broadcast?

This model apparently is a 16x9 default projector (i.e. it doesn't begin with a 1.33:d frame, so that 1.78:1 images are going to fill its entire availablepicture area). When a 1.33:1 image is projected, does it, like a plasma, produce gray bars on the left and right, or are these areas pitch black? Is there such a thing as burn-in with a projector (not on the screen, of course, but inside the machine itself)?

How are the side-to-side and up-and-down viewing angles for a projected image? I suppose this would depend in part upon the screen used (lenticular as opposed to flat white). But with LCD, the vertical viewing angle (as opposed to horizontal) is quite narrow, before much of the luminance is lost on the viewer. How is it with the Panny 700?

Thanks for your help, everyone! I just have to make VERY sure I know what I'm getting before investing over two grand, which for me is a fortune.

#13 of 21 OFFLINE   Dan Magnin

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Posted January 06 2005 - 04:16 PM

Is there any owner of the Panasonic 700 that lives in or near Green Bay Wi. that is willing to allow an audition? I'm in the construction phase of my dedicated theater room and am considering the upgrade of the big screen and have been tempted to purchase this unit based upon the consistant amount of positive reviews on its performance abilities.

#14 of 21 OFFLINE   Parker Clack

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Posted January 09 2005 - 06:03 PM

Dick:

As someone that has never seen the Panasonic in person I am not sure how to answer your questions about it.

I have seen several FPTV and RPTV that do not resolve SDTV or standard definition that well. Put an HD signal into it or even a DVD and the picture looks great. Put cable TV, DVDs that you have shot yourself, etc. and the image doesn't look so hot any more.

I do know that in front projection the smaller the screen size the better the image. So when going with a 80 inch diagonal as opposed to 120 inch diagonal the 80 inch size with give you an overall better picture.

A number of native 16 x 9 projectors have a "stretch" mode that will allow you to take a 1.33::1 image and stretch it out to fill the whole screen. I am not sure what the Panasonic model does.

Setting back about 18 feet from a projected 100 inch picture I was able to stand off from either side more than 30 degrees with out any type of picture degregation. As with any projected image your best picture is going to come from setting straight on both in a vertical and horizontal plane. But family members setting off to either side will have a very good picture from it.

I wish I could give you a more definite answer but since I do not own the Panasonic or any other front projector and can only comment on what I have seen displayed I am really not the person here to answer your specific questions. Hopefully some owners of the AE500 and the A700 can answer your questions with more definitive information.

Parker

"I tried to get my medical records from the company but they say they

are confidential and can only be released to other insurance companies,

pharmaceutical​ reps, suppliers of medical equipment and for some

reason the RNC."
 


#15 of 21 OFFLINE   Gregg Loewen

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Posted January 10 2005 - 05:46 AM

hi guys!

I did a 700 AE install for a friend over Christmas. It is a nice projector and I recommend it for the money. Blacks are not black and color controls should pretty much be centered, gray scale (which will effect color) can be set - and should be.

www.tvauthority.com is an HTF sponsor that is an authorized dealer for Panny, they can assist you with purchasing.

I did the install in a 9 foot deep room and used a 65" gray screen from www.carada.com (whom I also recommend).

there is a screen door effect with this projector, which is the same as I have seen on other LCD projectors. Just do a little defocus to adjust for this.

a Neutral density filter will also help with your black levels (as will using a gray screen). the larger the screen size, the less the need for the filter.

Also try to utilize the HDMI input AND dvd player that will upconvert to 720P.

Dick, in Maine, your not talking to the right persons :-)

Regards

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#16 of 21 OFFLINE   Brad E

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Posted January 10 2005 - 07:52 AM

Standard tv does not look that great. But then it doesn't look good on my 46" RPTV either. Non-anamoprhic dvd's look very good as well. Of course this all depends on the transfer quality of each individual disk.
HDTV by all accounts, is spectacular. I've never seen it though.
Black levels are very good. I did a side by side comparison with my 46" Sony when I first got the 700. I played the opening scenes of Master and Commander and Fellowship of the Rings.(dark scenes)
I honestly could not notice a difference in black levels. Maybe I don't know what I'm looking for, but at 110" the 700 looked every bit as good as my Sony.

Gregg, you are the first person that I've heard of that has seen SDE on the 700. And I read all of the hundreds of posts on avs before I bought mine.
I've never seen SDE on my 700 and I only sit 1.4x the screen width away.

#17 of 21 OFFLINE   Oren Paul

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Posted January 10 2005 - 09:45 AM

I have looked for SDE verrrrry close to the screen using my L500 and can barely see it. The elites on this forum are splitting hairs (and small ones at that) re black levels and SDE. I guess they have to justify their high $$$ consultant fees?

#18 of 21 OFFLINE   Gregg Loewen

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Posted January 10 2005 - 12:14 PM

SDE = pixel structure...

if you cant see it you are doing one of 3 things:

1. sitting far enough back.
2. defocusing the pj
3. not opening your eyes :-)

Nothing elite about this information.

Regards

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#19 of 21 OFFLINE   Brad E

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Posted January 10 2005 - 05:43 PM

According to most people, I'm sitting too close at 1.4x away. And I have the focus as sharp as I can make it.
So I guess that leaves #3. Although my eyes are pretty good.
Like I said, you are the first person that I've seen to comment on SDE on the Panasonic 700. Maybe it was that particular unit, or a connection, or the source.

Was the SDE present all the time, or just on certain scenes?

#20 of 21 OFFLINE   Gregg Loewen

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Posted January 11 2005 - 03:08 AM

it is present all the time, being able to notice it is like being able to notice dlp rainbow effect, once you know what to look for, it is quite obvious.

Though it is there, I am in no way saying that I dont recommend it, and as I posted earlier, I purchased one for a friend's HT.

I hardly consider my opinions to be splitting hairs...but merely wanted to make sure people know the pluses and minuses of gear at a given price point. People (including myself) buy gear that costs many times more and there is a visible quality difference. I hardly think that the video difference between a 500 or 700 (or similar unit) vs a HD2+ chip unit (infocus, Marantz, Yamaha, runco, dwin etc is slipping hairs...it is quite night and day once you know what you are looking for / at.

Anyway you slice it...a large video image (vs a 46" sony image with much better black level and no scan rate lines or screen door) looks very impressive to the typical HT enthusiast.

Regards

Gregg Loewen

The Sonodome - circa 2001
The Newest Sonotube - circa 2001
Gregg's DVDs updated...sometimes
Lion Audio Video Consultants usually current