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My non-professional mini-review of the Panasonic AE3000


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#1 of 11 OFFLINE   Southpaw

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Posted November 04 2008 - 07:19 AM

The Panny AE3000 was first introduced to me via the press release from CEDIA. Once I learned of the specs of their new projector, I knew I had to have one. For some time, I've been trying to figure out a way to go scope screen for the least amount of money. I currently was using a JVC RS1 which has no vertical stretch and even if I was to use 'poor man's CIH', all adjustments were manual. Frankly it would be a PITA to do it with an RS1 without buying an external processor and I wasn't about to spend that kind of coin.
Needless to say, the feature I was most excited about when I first read about the 3000 was the lens memory function. Essentially I would now be able to have presets for 16:9 material and 2.35/2.40:1 material and with the click of a button go back and forth in seconds. Add to this feature the ability to do 120hz and I was all ready to upgrade.
I was pleasantly surprised to be able to see a demo of the 3000 out in Hollywood a couple weeks ago. A Panasonic rep from Japan pointed out all the nifty features and functionality of the new projector and I was blown away. Black levels during the Blu-ray presentation of "Space Cowboys" were so good, I knew I wouldn't regret leaving the RS1. 120hz was demonstrated using a scrolling text test and I couldn't believe the difference in how smooth the letters floated across the screen. In addition, being able to tweak the colors with a CMS was icing on the cake.
As soon as I got back from Hollywood, I put in my pre-order and I received it last Friday. I have had time to put it through some tests with various source material and I am just as happy now as I was then. Blu-rays look incredible as sharpness, detail and clarity have been improved from my RS1 image. Black levels on are on par with the RS1. The additional features are so handy - NFL on Sunday was such a pleasure to watch in 'mode 2' (120hz), I experienced no motion blur. Broadcast HD was about the same. I guess nothing can fix heavy compression. Posted Image
I can't hear the projector fan at all and it sits just a few feet above my seating area. I had no convergence or uniformity issues.
At a $2500 price point, I just don't think you will get a better value for your money. The features are just too impressive.

#2 of 11 OFFLINE   Gregg Loewen

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Posted November 05 2008 - 06:44 AM

Quote:
In addition, being able to tweak the colors with a CMS was icing on the cake.

Hi Jason!!
Give me an email and lets get your PJ dialed in...the CMS is very good.

Gregg

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#3 of 11 OFFLINE   SherardP

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Posted November 09 2008 - 07:25 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Southpaw
Blu-rays look incredible as sharpness, detail and clarity have been improved from my RS1 image. Black levels on are on par with the RS1.

Nice write up, Ive seen the PJ in Japan also. Black levels are on par, but arent close to those as the HD/RS series projectors from JVC. When it comes to black it is believed that JVC is the one to beat and they are. Enjoy the PJ and for your application you made a great choice. Not sure what happened to your RS1, however detail/clarity are at a distance when comparing the two.

#4 of 11 OFFLINE   Southpaw

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Posted November 10 2008 - 12:28 PM

Not sure exactly what you are saying. First you agreed that black levels are on par with the JVC but then accused me of making people believe black levels are close to that of the JVC RS series.
In my side by side comparison, I believe the 3000 comes close to reproducing the black levels of the RS1. Close. Are they equal? No, probably not. But "on par" is close.
Also not sure what your last sentence is trying to say but there were two opinions in the room viewing the 3000 and RS1 for sharpness and fine detail. The 3000 won for both of us. Noticeable difference. Maybe there was an issue with my RS1 all along? Who knows?

#5 of 11 OFFLINE   SherardP

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Posted November 10 2008 - 01:13 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Southpaw
Not sure exactly what you are saying. First you agreed that black levels are on par with the JVC but then accused me of making people believe black levels are close to that of the JVC RS series.
In my side by side comparison, I believe the 3000 comes close to reproducing the black levels of the RS1. Close. Are they equal? No, probably not. But "on par" is close.
Also not sure what your last sentence is trying to say but there were two opinions in the room viewing the 3000 and RS1 for sharpness and fine detail. The 3000 won for both of us. Noticeable difference. Maybe there was an issue with my RS1 all along? Who knows?

Blacks levels are close, meaning the HD/RS1 are still on top is what I mean. The Panny may prove to be a tad sharper, to me it was slighly noticeable. The Panny for the price is a great pj. Since youre running a scope setup, it should be great for your application. I'm not sure how the Panny will compare to the new Epson models coming out. I also read a few reviews where the Sony HW10 looks great also. I need to scoot out to Best buy and take a look. All of these models are under 3k as the Panny is. Let me know if you ever get around to seeing the HW10, would love to hear your thoughts also.

#6 of 11 OFFLINE   Gregg Loewen

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Posted November 13 2008 - 04:02 AM

hi guys
Im sure that the black levels between the RS-1 and the AE3000 are similar. The RS2 has much better black levels then teh RS1. the RS2 also has much better field uniformity.
the rs20 is being released this month. Be prepared to be amazed ;-)

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#7 of 11 OFFLINE   SherardP

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Posted November 13 2008 - 08:33 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregg Loewen
hi guys
Im sure that the black levels between the RS-1 and the AE3000 are similar. The RS2 has much better black levels then teh RS1. the RS2 also has much better field uniformity.
the rs20 is being released this month. Be prepared to be amazed ;-)

Agreed and Im prepared, just not sure my wallet is yet. If the yen/dollar conversion is good I'll pick one up out here for under 6k.

#8 of 11 OFFLINE   Dan Rudolph

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Posted November 17 2008 - 10:46 PM

I'm hoping to get one of these in the next few months. I plan to use it with an Elite R125WH1-Wide screen and just have to work out how to make it fit in the room I want. I may have to put the projector in the dining room and leave that door open. Can somebody with the projector tell me how far back I'd have to place it to fill a 115"-wide screen and whether I can expect to get acceptable brightness in a darkened room this way?
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#9 of 11 OFFLINE   Southpaw

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Posted November 19 2008 - 09:18 AM

I'm not the best with math - what diagonal does that come out to?

#10 of 11 OFFLINE   SherardP

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Posted November 19 2008 - 08:41 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Southpaw
I'm not the best with math - what diagonal does that come out to?

in 16:9 format roughly 130" or slightly larger.

#11 of 11 OFFLINE   Dan Rudolph

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Posted November 21 2008 - 04:26 PM

That's a 2.35 screen though. It's a 125-inch diagonal.
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