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A New Idea: Use the Dell DLP as Front Projector (1 Viewer)

Lee Scoggins

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Friends,
I read an intriguing bit of information on the new Dell projector on Forbes.com today...
Now Dell Computer (nasdaq: DELL - news - people ) is jumping into the game with its 3100MP projector. It's a 3.5-pound unit that delivers 1050 ANSI lumens of brightness. It comes with a built-in 2-watt speaker, a full-function remote control and an integrated laser pointer.
Question: Why not use this as a front projector? According to Forbes it accepts PAL, NTSC, and has many types of video inputs. It costs just $2,500 and uses the latest TI DLP chip.
The only minor downside is maybe the black level, but I understand that the new chips are much better.
Also, I can carry this portable unit to business meetings as well.
What do you think?
:)
Lee
 

John Kotches

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I think the NEC LT-150 or LT-150z with Guy Kuo style modifications is one of the better tickets to inexpensive FPTV happiness, without going to CRT which is too large for most people to accept in their home theaters.

I've done the Guy Kuo mods, and the difference is astonishing. I did a test, with likely bad results that garnered a 2000:1 contrast ration. I sincerely doubt that this is accurate.

The downside is the fan noise -- you will require a hushbox to conquer it, or mount as far away as possible.

In my environment, I was unable to put the PJ anywhere but directly overhead, and with some effort on my part was able to get an acceptable solution, with a Whisperflow hushbox.

Another hot PJ is the Panasonic AE100.

Just some food for thought -- good luck Lee.

Regards,
 

DaViD Boulet

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I'd wonder what the rainbow was like on this projector with a price like that.

I'm hoping that the Plus Piano company will come out with a newer, brighter version of the Piano with less rainbow (maybe HD2 chip).

Also for cheap bang-for-buck the panny ae100 sounds like a winner.

Who knows though...maybe this projector will end up having better contrast than it has on paper when it arrives.
 

Lee Scoggins

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Thanks for the comments all.

I am intrigued by the Panny model.

It just seems to me that with current technology, someone should be able to offer a $2,000-2,500 projector with good video color, reasonable contrast, and still make it portable enough for my PowerPoint business presentations.

I have had trouble finding a Plus Piano dealer in my neighborhood, but the recent reviews have been mixed.

We may see better number on the Dell unit since it seems many technical stats were missing. I agree that 280:1 seems too low to be useful.

John,

How much is the NEC with the Guy Kuo mods?

Lee
 

John Kotches

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Lee,

The Guy Kuo mods you have to do yourself. Parts cost? Maybe $10-15. There were a series of discussion about this, mostly dealing with cleaning up light spill and color correction to pull down the inherent green push of the projectors bulb.

The differences in my setup were pretty astonishing, and I am using nothing close to a "reference level" video setup.

Regards,
 

David Broome

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And don't forget about the Panasonic 75U and the more expensive 711XU. They are XGA (1024x768) and 4:3, which is better for PP and business than the AE100 which is only SVGA and 16:9...
 

PeterVK

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I happen to have tested the Dell 3100MP myself over the weekend, and was impressed with the quality for such a small unit.Needed a pretty dark room to get a good picture. The Dell is made for business first place, not for HT, and that is what it's good at.

That being said, I am a newbie, and need to make up my mind very soon about a projector. No matter how adequate the Dell would be for me, small is not #1 priority, and I'd rather have something with a better contrast ratio/light output. Have about 2500K to spend, these are some options that I considered:

Dell 3100MP

Panasonic PT-LC75U, very good reviews, 1200 lumens, XGA, 400:1 contrast

Boxlight CD-600, 2000 Lumens, great!, but only SVGA, what's the downside of that?

Anything else I should consider?

Thanks
 

Gabriel_Lam

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I'd consider viewing the NEC LT150Z or LT154 as well.
The Boxlight CD-600 is actually the Infocus LP500, simply rebadged. You may be able to find the Infocus for less:
http://www.infocus.com/projectors/in...y=v&proj=lp500
One good thing about this projector is you get Faroujda's DCDi chip, for excellent video quality. Also (though I've never seen it), because it uses a 270 watt SHP bulb, I'm guessing reds will be very strong on it. My projector uses a 270 watt SHP and I've found it to have naturally very warm colors too.
One issue with 800x600 is there will be some slight downscaling when watching DVD's. Most DVD's have a native 16:9 resolution of 852x480. With an 800x600 projector, you'll be watching at a downscaled 800x450.
 

DaViD Boulet

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if you want DLP and don't mind some rainbows the NEC LT150 is exellent with a HTPC.

If you don't want to go HTPC and you want native 16x9 and can sit far enough away that screen-door issues won't affect you, go for the Panny AE100. Don't even question it. If you only have $2 k to spenk on a projector, I think you can get it shipped to you total for less than that from Japan.

-dave
 

PeterVK

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I see that the LT150Z has a 800:1 contrast ratio, and 1000 lumens. That seems like a very good ratio, is that what makes it good? Or would brighter be better
 

Gabriel_Lam

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It really matters what size screen you're looking to project it on, how much ambient light control you have, and if you and your significant other (and friends) are succeptable to rainbows.

A properly modded and calibrated LT150z can do easily over 1000:1 on/off contrast.
 

Mark Amayao

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What about viewsonics PJ350 projector? ...... its xga i believe and touts a 800:1 contrast ratio as well ...
 

Gabriel_Lam

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The Viewsonic PJ350 is actually the Sharp Notevision M15X. Boxlight also buys it and markets it as the Boxlight XD-17k.
XGA native Single chip .7" DLP
500:1 on/off contrast
1100 ANSI lumens
DVI-I connector
38dB of noise (boxlight claims 35dB)
2000 hour 130watt P-VIP bulb
3.3 to 3.5lbs
http://www.sharp-usa.com/files/pro_dow_m15x.pdf
http://www.boxlight.com/projectors/p...PROJECTORS&X=1
At about $2800-3400, might not be the best choice. BTW, the M15x has been sort of "one-upped" by the new M20x, which gives you 1500 lumens, 1000:1 on/off contrast (800:1 ansi contrast), at the same price.
 

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