Anyone have experience with Sony Cineza projector?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Greg_W, Nov 27, 2001.

  1. Greg_W

    Greg_W Stunt Coordinator

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    I noticed the ad at the top of the page. $3000 for a front projector seems really cheap. Is the thing any good? What about the Plus Piano HE-3100 reviewed in SGHT? Just curious about any thoughts on these cheaper projectors. Thanks.

    Greg
     
  2. Huey

    Huey Agent

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    It's OK for 2K but not 3K. Street prices for Cineza are around $2500. For 2.25K ( www.us.buy.com )the famed NEC LT150 is an XGA DLP with 800 lumens, 800:1 contrast ratio are a much better value (provided you don't suffer from DLP rainbow sideeffects (color separation artifacts from spinning color wheel at 60 Hz which affects 10-20% of population which can give some headaches and eyefatigue). The Cineza is SVGA (800X600), 700 lumens, 400:1 contrast, LCD (more screen door, can have/get dead pixels), quiet (32db), has side/vertical digital keystoning (useless as it tend to degrade image), has zoom (helpful to shrink image size to fit 4:3 image inside a 16:9 screen), and cheap bulb ($170 for 1000 hour).
    Check www.projectorcentral.com for an article comparing SVGA to XGA PJ and why you need XGA (basically for HDTV later you'd need XGA for better imaging. For DVD it probably won't matter as much though XGA should give you a better image due to higher resolution). The main problem for LT150 is it's noisier than Cineza (about 39-42 db) which is noticeable on quiet passages but not noticeable during action scenes). It's monotone so easy to ignore. Some build hushbox for their PJ (commercial one is also available: www.whisperflow.com ). I have LT150 and love mine.
    If you insists on quiet PJ, the Plus Piano is a better buy for 3K. It has DVDo deinterlacer which is much better than Sony for Svideo sources (progressive sources won't matter as much). Plus Piano does not support 480p so set top box progressive DVD player via component won't be compatible (doesn't need it as it has a great progressive doubler built-in). It can do 480p via DVI which is great for HTPC (home theater PC). It has 240 Hz color wheel which lessen the rainbow artifacts by 1/4 compared to LT150.
    If you insists on LCD as you get rainbow artifacts, then the Sanyo XW15 (XGA, LCD, 700 lumens) for $2100 is a better buy than the Cineza. NEC LT154 is around $2.5K and it's LT150's cousin with 900 lumens, XGA LCD, and vortex scaling enhancement for better video and colors. The main problem with LCD in general is 1) screendoor (pixels are more visible, especially with SVGA, from a given distance compared to DLP), 2) 3x the risks of getting dead pixels (3 panels of R, G, B where as DLP only has 1 panel), 3) poorer contrast (LCD technology is improving but will always be behind DLP)--cheaper units has 200:1 CR, very expensive units can achieve 600:1 CR (DLP starts at 400:1 and goes up to 1100:1 for more expensive unit). 1-3 dead pixels generally are accepted in LCD during quality control whereas DLP is not.
    Check http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forum...php?forumid=24 if you really want to learn about digital FPTV. CRT FPTV is getting a lot cheaper too especially for used models. They tend to have a softer, smoother, best blacks and contrast, and overall better image than digital PJ; EXCEPT they are larger, heavier, needs external scaler/deinterlacer, difficult to install, maintain, and calibrate, may suffer from burn ins, and tend to be dimmer (all these are relative to digital PJ of course but all can be dealt with in the right settting for the right person).
     
  3. MathewM

    MathewM Stunt Coordinator

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    Nice, informative post Huey!

    I considered an inexpensive FP in the past (bought a toshiba tw40x81 instead) and am always looking for unbiased opinions. I just missed out on the Dell NEC 150 deal a few months ago. I don't know if I would suffer from rainbow artifacts or not because I've never seen a single chip DLP in action. Too bad on the Cineza. I was looking forward to this projector thinking it would be comparable to the 10ht (which I've seen). It's good to know the real difference between SVGA and XGA.

    Thanks.
     
  4. Huey

    Huey Agent

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    Thanks, glad to be of help.

    As anything in the HT world, whenever a unit is labeled "HT" it's marked up. Cineza is nothing but a VPL-CS3 (SVGA 4:3 LCD) in a fancy housing with better fans. CS3 can be bought for $1500 brand new but it's a "business" PJ.

    LT150 was dressed up as "HT PJ" by a few companies who added quieter fans and better scalers/inputs, and marked it up to 8-10K.

    Runco is a perfect example of mark ups. Their PJs are nothing that special but boy are they expensive just because of their name being identified with HT.

    I guess this is true of all things. A Toyota/Honda dressed in fancier clothing is called a Lexus/Acura for double the price.
     
  5. Chris Purvis

    Chris Purvis Stunt Coordinator

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    Huey, if you are still out there, I'd be interested in knowing at what screen size the screen door effect becomes really noticable on that NEC LT-150 of yours.

    whoops - I misread your post - the LT150 is a DLP projector. Never mind.
     

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