Choosing a projector

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by PeterVK, Jan 6, 2002.

  1. PeterVK

    PeterVK Auditioning

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    Hi, I am a newbie in home theater land. I want to buy myself an LCD projector. I had an old one before, and the results were not great. Going to home theater stores they tell me I need a graphics grade projector, starting at around 8K. This is way above my budget. I think that a regular XGA projector, with about 1000 Lumens, minimum 300:1 aspect ratio would give a good result. Comments???
     
  2. Matt Stryker

    Matt Stryker Screenwriter

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    Peter-

    When you say the old one was not great, what was wrong with it? Did it not have very good black levels, too dim, too loud, etc?

    Also, are you strictly considering LCD or are you open to DLP or D-ILA projectors as well?

    By 300:1 are you talking about contrast ratio? Aspect ratio would either be 4:3 or 16:9.

    And welcome to the Forum!
     
  3. RAF

    RAF Lead Actor

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    The last thing you need to do is purchase a projector at a home theater salon. Most of them try to push "high end" models and they get an attitude when you suggest that anything in the $5K range or less can compete. That is total B.S. in this day and age. The day where you needed a 200-300 pound CRT based unit at megabuck pricing are long gone.

    I'm using a SONY VW10HT which cost me $5500 when I purchased it 2 years ago and has now been replaced by the 11HT. I understand the price of my unit (if you can still find one) is now in the area of $4K or even less. And I'd stack my projector up against any of the so-called "HT shop" stores any day of the week. Check out my HT web site for more details.

    There are also a lot of other options even cheaper than the Sony VW10/11HT that might meet your needs. See some of the links here. You certainly don't need to spend $8K.
     
  4. PeterVK

    PeterVK Auditioning

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    it was too dim, very little contrast, a bit fuzzy. I am not looking for perfect, but a little more than acceptable only.

    And you're right, I was talking contrast ratio
     
  5. Matt Stryker

    Matt Stryker Screenwriter

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    Dell.com is having a 10% off deal on the NEC LT155; it'll run you $3090 from them. You have to go to their small business website to get the 10% off.
    Here's a review on the LT155:
    http://www.projectorcentral.com/cons...m?ci=nec_LT155
    It is 1200 lumens, has a 400:1 contrast ratio, and is native XGA. It can accept 480p video from a progressive DVD player, and also display HDTV. I think that meets your requirements. Plus it only weighs 5 lbs.
    Take a look around at projectorcentral.com and read reviews and see what jumps out at you. Also check out RAF's site; his site was one of the beginnings of my urge to go front projection.
    Will you be playing DVDs through a normal player, a progressive player, or an HTPC?
     
  6. PeterVK

    PeterVK Auditioning

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    It looks like this would indeed be a projector that meets my requirements, so you think this would project a good picture, although it is a data projector, looks like it from the review.

    Only problem that I see with this unit is that is has limited zoom capabilities, and my distance to the wall is pretty much fixed.

    Thanks for yout input!
     
  7. Matt Stryker

    Matt Stryker Screenwriter

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    Don't worry about the data part; I read a dozen or so reviews over at avsforum.com and from all accounts this is a great home theater projector. Also NEC provides a 3-day turnaround on warranty repairs for the first 2 years, which is awesome compared to the wait-and-pray antics of most consumer electronics manufacturers.

    As for the zoom, my LT150 does not have any zoom whatsoever and I have had no compliants. I understand that your distance to the wall is fixed, but are you aiming for a specific screen size? Can you ceiling mount the PJ at a closer distance?

    If screen size is not an issue, then you can get the PJ set up and then measure for what size screen you will need. Or, if you know the distance already you can use the throw calculator thing at projectorcentral.com to calculate how big a screen you will need.
     
  8. Kevin Coleman

    Kevin Coleman Second Unit

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    RAF? What planet did you weigh a CRT projector on? Jupiter? Mine weighs in at 104LBs.
    Kevin C. [​IMG]
     
  9. John Kotches

    John Kotches Cinematographer

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    Kevin,

    There are some massively heavy CRT projectors out there, and some that are "relatively" svelte at the 100lb or so mark.

    Regards,
     
  10. Dennis Nicholls

    Dennis Nicholls Lead Actor

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    My CRT projector is a svelt 185 pounds. Get the guys together for a CRT mounting party.
    The good thing about the CRT projector, other than the superior image quality and "anamorphic squeezability", is that they are being dumped by schools, corporations, and the government. Hence my Marquee 8501LC, which sold for $30,000 new in 1996, was bought by me ex-Boston U. for $3000 last year. Still lots of life left.
     
  11. JohanK

    JohanK Second Unit

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    Used CRT FPTVs are going for cheap nowadays; I got mine for $800. Coupled w/ a HTPC, it makes for a relatively inexpensive way to view DVDs in progressive form and HDTV (though my setup is DVD only). Setup is a bit hairy but results are good (many say preferred) w/ CRT (assuming tubes are good).

    LCD may be a good way to go if you are not into messing with the projector too much. The LT model or the Sony would be excellent choices but I am far from an expert w/ LCD.

    Anyway, just wanted to say that it can be done for much cheaper than the 8K the shop quoted you. Best of luck.

    PS I recommend the HTPC route if you don't already have the components for progressive DVD. Cheap scaling and upgradeability are a definite plus.
     
  12. Pieter_L

    Pieter_L Guest

    if you want easy of use and you're planning to watch mainly movies (DVD) and HDTV, i would strongly suggest a 16:9 native LCD or DLP projector
    no technology is perfect (yet):
    LCD does not have perfect blacks (i have one, but it doesn't bother me), while DLP may suffer from "rainbows" (if you're sensitive to them). CRT has low light output - in case you use in ambient light conditions (superbowl afternoon?) or large screen.
    but don't let any of the above stop you.
    remember, SIZE MATTERS! and it puts the "theater" in HT [​IMG]
     
  13. Jon_B

    Jon_B Screenwriter

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    Check out projectorpeople.com. They've lowered the price on the Sony VW10HT.

    Cheers

    Jon
     
  14. Deane Johnson

    Deane Johnson Supporting Actor

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    PeterVK:
    I don't believe you said what your budget is, but a projector you should look at is the Sanyo PLV-60HT. It's also sold as the Boxlight Cinema HD13. It is available for under $5000.
    LCD, 16:9, 700:1 contrast ratio, 1200 ANSI lumens.
    Projector Central gave it a bad review, but many of us are suspicious of their sample as everyone else that has it and has compared it to others raves about the performance.
    Run some searches over at the Av Sciences forum and you'll find a lot of discussion about this one and the projectors mentioned above that will be helpful to you.
    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forum...?s=&forumid=24
    Deane
     
  15. Scott Holt

    Scott Holt Agent

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    Peter, I agree with Deane. The Sanyo 60ht is great. I got it from a place called The Projector People. I have never had such nice dealings with a group of people in my life. Free shipping, and the price was alot cheaper than any other company I saw that was reputable. Call them at 1-888-248-0675 ext 2277 and ask for Todd Reed. Greatest guy you will ever talk to and he will give you info to help you make the best decision. I bet I called him 40 times and he was always super. If you call tell him Scott told you to call. He'll get a kick out of it. Good luck!!!!!!!!
     

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