Basics and need to know for buying a projector.

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Mike Baldwin, Sep 11, 2004.

  1. Mike Baldwin

    Mike Baldwin Stunt Coordinator

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    OK, just got a house, have a great room downstairs that would be ideal for a home theater. So I want to do a projector. I can get the room pretty dark, only 2 small windows. Size is roughly 24' front to back 11' wide and the distance from projector to screen/wall is 6.5" Thats the room dimensions. From what I understand is that the higher the Lumas the brighter the picture, that is good, I like a bright clear picture. I have a Toshiba 51H83 in my living room, love the size and the tv, but wish i had a better picture. Something DLP/Plasma quality, but in the large size and affordable. Budget is going to be under $1200. Lower the price, more money for speakers. I am also not afraid of open box buys or used equipment as long as its been taken care of. Please help me find my future projector. Thanks alot

    Mike
     
  2. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    What is your ceiling like, as for mounting something like a used CRT projector.

    Regardless of choice, you need to get some black shades to block out those windows, as close to completely black as you can get is best.

    For a budget like that, you'll be looking at one of the entry digitals, and new is best, as the old ones are quickly outperformed by the new ones, so you will be struggling at even keeping up with the new prices, unless you want a REALLY cheap projector (couple hundred) that is woefully outperformed. Like I mentioned, if you can deal with CRT, it will be a superior performer, however it is a project that takes some time for learning, and the floor space, or a hefty ceiling mount.
     
  3. Mike Baldwin

    Mike Baldwin Stunt Coordinator

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    To block out the windows wouldn't be hard. I don't know the difference between a CRT and a DLP/LCD progector besides it has three color beams to combine into the picture. I thought CRT's were outdated thou. My ceiling is drywall and I have a small sag in it so in the future I am tearing it down and redoing it. That is when I plan on the progector because I can hide the wires/cables in the ceiling and make a concaved area for the projector. Can you further explain all the specs that I need to be looking at for my room size.

    Oh yeah, main viewing will be movies and some TV. This is going to be an entertainment/pool rec room.

    Thanks everyone

    Mike
     
  4. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    Your biggest decision is how important the PQ is, as to whether you deal with going CRT, or going with a digital. CRT, while yes is older, is the superior display, and for your budget if you can find the right one in good condition for really cheap, or if you can purchase one from a tech/reseller, will definitely outperform an entry digital. However, as I mentioned, you'll need to spend some time reading about your options a bit more.

    I am not per se biased towards CRT, but rather biased towards the best possible picture in a proper room, that one can afford. This leaves out things like convenience and simplicity, because I can deal with a little bit of a project. Often, people will value the size/simplicity benefits of a digital over the better picture and value of a CRT, so that's a choice you'll have to make. A good starter for info all about CRT projectors:

    http://www.curtpalme.com/6901.html
     
  5. brentl

    brentl Cinematographer

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    "I am not per se biased towards CRT" Cmon Chris that's like saying Don Berg isn't biased towards the Panasonic Xp35[​IMG]

    The Crt thing is great if you have a dark room, the right screen, and and some time every month to tinker. Otherwise I think you'd be fine with something like and Infocus x1(deleted, and getting harder to find), a Benq PB6100, Infocus 4805(16:9 the other 2 are 4:3 aspect ratio) are all DLP or Epson home 10+ or something like that taht is LCD.

    refurb Benq 6100

    Brent
     
  6. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    I am not. I am a picture quality junkie, and I've seen no projector yet that can beat a top end CRT overall. Only one that I've seen comes close, and that's the sony Qualia. I don't have 30K for a projector, and even then, 10K or so will get an LC 9inch CRT and a tech to do it all and beat it.

    "Tinkering every month" is an exaggeration based on lack of experience.

    FYI, I paid less (much less) than a grand for one of my CRT projectors, and only an HD2+ unit will roughly equal it (in some respects). Comparing this to something like an x1 isn't a fair fight. I did get lucky in hunting for it though. Even from a tech, a grand can get you a good data-grade 7incher, or even an ES focus 8incher, and again, with a proper source like an HTPC, there's no comparison.
     
  7. Mike Baldwin

    Mike Baldwin Stunt Coordinator

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    You mention a HTPC. Is this a nessesaty. I have two computers right, both HP Pavilions, We were going to have a garage sale and sell the older one. Should I just turn it into a HTPC. What benefits does a HTPC give.

    Back to CRT's. They sound better then I thought, but how would I found out whats a good deal on a CRT. Best place to shop and what are the Specs to look for. I also had the impression that the LCD/DLP are far supiorer, but I guess not.

    That BenQ Unit is extremely tempting, how would that rate against a CRT unit. That price tag is definitely appealing too.

    Sidenote, What the best type of screen, does it depend on the Projector?

    Thanks again
     
  8. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    No it is not a necessity, however it is the best and cheapest way to get good video processing to feed something that demands it like a CRT. An entry digital will have on-board processing that will suffice for what you feed it, though feeding it it's native resolution to bypass that, from say an HTPC will provide some improvement.

    CRTs are bought used, and I recommend from an AVS CRT forum regular member, or from a tech/reseller, or from videogon (a lot of CRT forum members). Other places are risky due to the varying condition of the tubes, you need to know more what you're doing to purchase at auction or ebay, etc. The screen does depend on the projector, digitals with poor CR can benefit from ND filters or gray screens, CRTs are good with 1.3 gain white screens or thereabouts. You can't compare unless you know specific CRT models, as discussed better in curt's FAQ which i linked. You can also get the lists of pjs for sale from curt, time, terry etc by email, if you need more help i can direct you via pm.
     
  9. brentl

    brentl Cinematographer

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    "Tinkering every month" is an exaggeration based on lack of experience."

    You're right Chris, lack of experience with CRTs, but you would consider dealing with regular(although minor) reconvergence "tinkering" wouldn't you?

    I like the idea of a CRT, I just don't like the size or weight of a CRT projector. I was at a sale on Saturday, and saw an old Barco HDVT fot $1000 and thought that was cool, until I realized it would take up my whole trunk!

    If you have room, I think a used CRT is a better value than a $5000 dlp/lcd projector, assuming you have light control.

    Brent
     
  10. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    Convergence every month? Not unless you've done a horrid setup to start with and are driving the electronic gemoetry and convergence controls nuts. Twice a year, or maybe every 3 months is more than sufficient for a stable setup.
     

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