CRT vs LCD projectors

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jarrett, Aug 17, 2001.

  1. Jarrett

    Jarrett Auditioning

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    Hi folks,
    I was talking to a local Home Theater designer who has done some work for our company and the home of our President yesterday. We were discussing my plans to put in a theater room in the basement when I build my first house in a year. I was a bit nervous that my budget of 20-40 thousand (Canadian) wouldnt "cut the mustard" and was convinced I would have to go with a 65" RPTV because screen/projector setup would be too costly.
    He assured me we could put together a "balls to the wall" setup for about 25-30 thousand.
    He certainly seemed extremely genuine and knowledgeable. Currently he is building his own theater room and its going to cost him about 25k. He is using a Sony projector and Boston Acustics speakers. Everything he told me sounded great and I think I will be working with him in several months when "go time" arrives...
    One thing that troubled me though was that he was using, and recommending, an LCD projector. He said it was "very affordable" and that the picture quality was outstanding. Im sure he had no reason to be dishonest about that - but for some reason I seem to recall picking up tidbits on these forums and in Audio Visual Interiors magazine about LCD being quite bad quality, and having bad images. I asked him about this and he said that was true up to a couple of years ago, but they have really improved.
    Thoughts or input on this?
     
  2. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    LCD has improved quite a bit in the last few years. I've installed a few Sony 10HT projectors and mated with a Stewart Greyhawk screen it does a credible job. LCD is still by no stretch of the imagination the equal of a good quality CRT projector. The image from a properly setup CRT projector is more smooth and film-like with better contrast and shadow detail. With your budget you should be able to build a very respectable home theater that will give you yeras of enjoyment. I would question the use of the Boston Acoustics speakers. While they do a credible job there are definitely better choices (IMHO). Good luck.
     
  3. RAF

    RAF Lead Actor

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    The price differential between CRT and LCD projectors (not to mention the greater maintenance of the CRT units) make this, IMHO, a no brainer. I have owned a SONY VW10HT for about 1.5 years and couldn't be happier with my decision. Now that the price on this unit has dropped to well under $5000 there is no question that it is the best bang for the buck.
    I looked at many options when considering a projector for my home theater (including used CRTs). I even constructed the HT to accommodate both types of projectors. (Generally, CRT's are placed much closer to the screen than LCD's). The bottom line to me was to go for the LCD projector (the SONY) since I couldn't possibly justify the great difference in cost and inconvenience of a CRT unit.
    Is a $40,000 CRT (or 3 chip DLP) better than my SONY LCD? Yes. Is it 9 or 10 times better? Absolutely not. In fact I would state that my projector produces at least 95% of the picture quality of the much more expensive units, and, in some cases (color uniformity and brightness come immediately to mind) an even better picture.
    If I had money to burn I might consider a CRT. However, in the real world I can't possibly justify the cost (and inconvenience.) Most people who bad-mouth the recent LCD units just haven't seen one set up correctly in a proper environment.
    My 2 cents.
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    RAF
    [Demented Video Dude since 1997]
    [Computer Maven since 1956]
    ["PITA" since 1942]
    My HT (latest update 02/05/01)
     
  4. Douglas Boulanger

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    I agree....CRT is almost dead in the home theater world, My JVC G20 has just as good an image as a $40,000 crt. But I also sent the projector back to jvc and paid to have a gamma calibration done. Boy what a difference.
     
  5. Jarrett

    Jarrett Auditioning

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    Thank you for the replies and input (I welcome any further opinions however). Im feeling much better about LCD.
    ------------------
    Share your home theatre building tips, websites, commentary, pictures with me at any time at [email protected] Thanks!
     
  6. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    Using the "$40,000" figure for CRTs as if that's the price one MUST pay to get excellent performance is quite misleading. An EXCELLENT CRT with new tubes can be aquired for one tenth that price. I myself bought a BRAND new CRT front projector for only $6500.
    LCDs have their advantages and are getting better, and they satisfy many people, but the overall picture quality is still inferior to CRT.
     
  7. Kevin Coleman

    Kevin Coleman Second Unit

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    It takes much less than 40,000 dollars for a CRT projector to beat a 10HT. You can buy a 9" Sony 1292Q (which will blow a 10HT out of the water) right now for between 4K to 6K with pretty low hours. Sure they have to be tweaked about every 4 to 6 months but you never have to buy a new lamp for them either.
    Kevin C.
     
  8. John-D

    John-D Stunt Coordinator

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    A little unfair Robert. you dropped the price of the LCD to "under $5000" and kept a CRT priced at $40,000??
    $40K is the list on a SONY G-90.. the current uncrowned King of Front Projectors and interestingly it's street price is around $15K for a low hour B-stock or used unit.
    AV Science Forum has 9" Electrohome Marquee 9500LC on a $15K powerbuy right now!! and judging from the reaction of people in the know it's still priced a little higher than what they can get elsewhere.
    Stepping down to 8" CRT PJ's most used units go for around $6000 in EXCELLENT condition.. Extremely low hours.
    7" units can be had for less than $4000.. some with very Low hours on them and some with brand new tubes. Units with less than a 1000+ hours can be had for under $3000.
    Jarrett certainly has the budget for an excellent conditoin low hours used 8" CRT PJ. What he needs to do is to see these in action and then compare with an LCD presentation. The truth will be revealed.
    In a dedicated Home Theater the PJ is setup and then it's upto you to routinely 'play' with it to your hearts content to squeeze every ounce of performance it can deliver. No wonder there is little tweaking after installation of most Lamp Projectors. btw last I checked CRT PJ's didn't require regular 'oil changes' or 'tune ups'. Changing bulbs every couple of thousand hours might be fun for Lamp Projector owners.
    The VW-10HT is no slouch, but let's not confuse things here.. it's still an LCD projector. It has to cross the Gxx's of DILA before it can even challenge 8" or 9" Barco, Electrohome, NEC, Runco or SONY CRT Projectors.
    Good Luck Jarrett.
     
  9. Jim Klabechek

    Jim Klabechek Auditioning

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    LCD can do 95% of what my G90 can do..I don't think so, 8" CRT can get close but no way can a LCD projector come close. 10ht is a nice lcd projector but it doesn't compare to a 8" or 9" inch crt projector. If you go with a lamp PJ get a Dila is much better then a LCD projector.
    Jim
     
  10. Kevin Coleman

    Kevin Coleman Second Unit

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    Here Jarret check this out. You will be dissapointed that it is not quite 40,000 but only at 4000 right now. 9" CRT projector with 13 hours on it and still has factory warranty remaining. HenryFU is a well known and reliable seller of CRT projectors on E-bay. If you want the best picture for the lowest money this projector is it.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/aw-cgi/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=1263087934
     
  11. Jim Klabechek

    Jim Klabechek Auditioning

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    His reserve is around 9k all his PJ auctions have high reserves. Best seller of PJ IMHO is quaturbo on ebay.
    Jim
     
  12. KeithR

    KeithR Second Unit

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    John D,
    G90 the "uncrowned king of front projectors"? I don't think so...give me a Vidikron Vision One instead. Of course this will become a huge pissin match, so I should shut up [​IMG] I will accept mine in Mercedes Silver btw [​IMG]
    LCDs have gotten much better...the new Sanyo and 11HT should be pretty decent for most. DILA is far and away superb and will give you a much bigger screen. The new DLPs are very interesting such as the upcoming Seleco HT300 and the new Sharp 9000. I would wait a few months and see what happens...way too much stuff to be released after CEDIA.
     
  13. Gil D

    Gil D Supporting Actor

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    Interesting that no one has mentioned the LT150 which is a DLP based unit. With an 800:1 contrast ratio the LT150 comes recommended by many over alot of the LCD PJs. I my self was considering an LCD unit from NEC or Sanyo, but now that the price of the LT150 is approaching $2K I am leaning that way. The bad thing about these PJ's of course is the high price of replacement bulbs and could be a significant factor if your usage is high.
    CRT is way too bulky and cumbersome for me. I would think with the price of digital projectors continuing to drop and the technology continuing to improve that you may be better off getting a budget LCD or DLP unit with acceptable quality now and upgrading later on. Of course if money is no object get the 9" CRT.
    Gil
     
  14. Jim Ferguson

    Jim Ferguson Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the LT150, and also an 8" CRT (the Barco BG808s.) The LT150 is a nice little box, and I plan to use it with my PC and for light-duty in my living room, where I can't get total light control. But quality wise it really isn't in the same league with the CRT projector. For DLP's specifically you really, really need to see the one you're thinking of getting to see if you can get over its two greatest downfalls -- the lack of blacks, and the presence of the "rainbow effect." Both of these problems with my LT150 make it unsuitable for my use as a primary HT projector.
     
  15. NickSo

    NickSo Producer

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    Robert A Fowkes:
    Where did you find a Sony VW10HT for less than $5000??? The cheapest ive seen is at ProjectorPeople.com for like $5045...
    Anyways, thats still $1600 CAD cheaper than what my local store quoted me... $6100 USD ($9500 CAD)...
    ------------------
     
  16. KeithR

    KeithR Second Unit

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    You can pick it up at BHphotovideo.com for 4500. Too bad the rebate is off (300 bucks) I believe...at 4200 it is a decent deal.
    I would hold off for the 11HT however...not so fussy as the 10HT. it will cost as much as a PLV-60 however.
     
  17. Sean M

    Sean M Stunt Coordinator

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    The Vision One: a fifteen thousand dollar case added to an Electrohome 9500LC Ultra. But I digress...
    No LCD will come close to the image quality of a properly setup CRT projector. Opinions to the contrary are simply the wishful thinking of LCD owners. The one advantage an LCD projector has over a CRT is higher brightness, and with it the ability to drive much larger screen sizes. Depending on the CRT projector and your personal preferences for brightness, you probably will not be able to exceed 8'-9' or screen width, which is plenty for most folks that don't like to sit in the first row of a movie theater.
    Given your budget, and what I would think will be the ability to have total light control if this is to be a dedicated room, you can do far worse than an 8 or 9 inch CRT. The contenders to look for are the Sony G70, NEC XG110LC and XG135LC (8" tubes), the Sony 1292, Electrohome 8500LC or 9500LC (the 8500 can have 9" tubes installed), but the EH's are at the upper end of the price range for possible projectors. There are lots of others, and all of them will be better choices than a digital projector, unless you want a very large screen.
    Don't forget to budget for a quality scaler, or build a HTPC. The HTPC forum at www.avsforum.com (as well as the CRT and Digital projector forum) is a great resource for building a HTPC. If you'd rather not mess with a PC in your theater, then Vigatec, Faroudja and TAW all makes scalers that would accompany the above projectors quite nicely, with one from Key Digital coming soon as well. Expect to pay $4-5K (US) for a decent scaler.
    ------------------
    "Experience is the one thing you can't get for nothing." - Oscar Wilde
     
  18. Jarrett

    Jarrett Auditioning

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    Thanks for all the great replies. I went in to visit my Home Theater dealer today (National Audio Video in Edmonton, Canada). He gave me a demo of the Sony 10HT (or whatever its called) LCD projetor on a Da-Lite screen. The sound was provided by a set of Totems, I didnt catch the Receiver brand.
    Overall the sound was spectacular. The picture was also very, very good - There was definitely more ambient light in the demo room than I will have in my HT so I think it would be improved in my setup. However, I was able to detect a bit of a lack of contrast, and some fairly washed out blacks. Definitely noticed that, but overall I think I could be very happy with that picture, considering my budget limitations [​IMG]
    ------------------
    Share your home theatre building tips, websites, commentary, pictures with me at any time at [email protected] Thanks!
     
  19. AaronBatiuk

    AaronBatiuk Second Unit

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    You certainly don't need to spend $25k or $30k for a remarkable home theatre experience. That said, as you are hiring someone else to do it for you, expect to pay through the tooth.

    I set up my system myslef for considerably less (
     
  20. James Bergeron

    James Bergeron Supporting Actor

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    I agree with Aarom and others. I can get a used CRT today for $1500 CDN with new tubes, that's about $1000 USD. It will blow away an LCD projector.

    For $30-$40K you could put together an amazing home theatre, but will it be 20-30K better than my (maybe a total of $10K) home theatre? Doubt it!

    Unless you really don't have the time or are not willing to put in ANY effort yourself (although since you came to this site you obviously do) I would see what you can do yourself, you'll be really surprised. But if you want to just have someone do it for you, hey more power to you.
     

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