Is Panasonic AE900 the right projector for my needs?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Brian Beecher, Feb 23, 2006.

  1. Brian Beecher

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    Hi everybody. Here is my situation. I am a portrait photographer and am looking for a projector that I can use with my laptop to display slideshows for clients. I figured that since I am setting up this room with a projector I may as well get one also capable of doing a nice job with movies and games. I guess the question now is the Panasonic AE900 a good option for this double duty? The room size is 17.5' by 11.5'. I will be able to completely control the light. The projector would be mounted on the back wall, so the 2x zoom lens is nice. Are there any issues with this unit that I should keep in mind? Normally I like to take a bit more time decideing with this type of purchase, but I need to come up with a decision pretty quickly. I found the projector for $1550 after rebate plus a blockbuster gift card, so it seems to be the nicest unit for the price I can find. Thanks a lot for any advice or tips you can provide.

    Brian
     
  2. Robert_J

    Robert_J Lead Actor

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    I bought my AE900 without seeing it as well and I have enjoyed every minute of it. I'm projecting on a 103" DIY screen made out of black-out cloth. I've done very little tweaking to the picture and I think it is great. Even my wife was amazed at the quality of the picture when we watched the Superbowl. It was her first time watching sports in HD. She is not a one to comment on the picture quality.

    -Robert
     
  3. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    This is an excellent machine, however you should be aware that it has a dynamic iris, which greatly helps increase the on/off CR performance with video content. However, this will be of no use with still images. You may or may not want to disable the DI when doing a slideshow with still images.

    Also this is a 16:9 display, which is great for movies and such, but if you have a lot of vertical portraits, you may want to be aware of that fact too, because you'll be wasting a lot of the available panel resolution on pillarbars compared to say a 4:3 display. However, I am not really familiar with any 4:3 displays anymore, so I don't even know if they are basically relegated to crappy business-presentation oriented machines, so it may be likely that pretty much everything is going to be 16:9. Off the top of my head, this would seem to be true.
     
  4. RickRO

    RickRO Stunt Coordinator

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    Brian first I don't have a projector (yet) but I have done a lot of photography and I agree with this....




    If your main use is going to be for showing off your pictorial artistry then I think that should be your primary consideration and the movie thing second. It would be like watching a "letter boxed" movie on a regular TV with a 4:3 projector.

    Here is a great website that I go to often to obtain information on all type of projector questions. click here.

    Hope this helps you out!
     
  5. mark campbell

    mark campbell Auditioning

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    Brian
    I am also a photographer (weddings and events). I too will use my projector (Panny Ae 900 arriving this week), to show slideshows to clients etc. I am hoping this projector will do the job. I will also be watching movies he he!.
    Mr room is very similar size to yours and I have just completed building it in my garage.
    Cheers
    Mark
     
  6. mark campbell

    mark campbell Auditioning

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    Brain
    I just got the panny 900 and set it up yesterday. It works great with my slideshows played from my PC. Projector displays at 4: 3 perfect for the slides.
    From my DVD player my burnt DVD slideshows are shown at a slightly "stretched" format which fills the screen. For showing clients photos it is great. There is plenty of zoom to play with as well. My screen is about 100 inch diagonal.
    The projector is very impressive! Movies are mind-blowing!
    Cheers
    Mark
     
  7. Art Feierman

    Art Feierman Auditioning

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    Greetings Brian,

    If you decide that going with a 16:9 is acceptable, I'll throw another projector into your mix to consider.

    The new Optoma HD72 (which seems to be a couple/few hundred more in the US than the Panny 900u (after the Panny's rebatess), has several advantages, most notably it is significantly brighter. ie. in best mode, I measured just over 500 lumens vs the Panny's low 300. The difference seemed even larger in its brightest mode vs the Panny. You will find comparison images in the General performance section, that show relative brightness.

    I'm new to this forum, so not allowed to post other urls, but you can go to the projectorreviews.com website and look up the HD72 review on the homepage.

    While typically DLP projectors (like the HD72) have poor reds and yellows in their brightest modes, I did not find this to be true of the Optoma.

    The Optoma's colors are definitely a bit off out of the box (more than the Panny's), but correctable with one of the basic color calibration disks (ie. Avia) for $40 or so. You'ld probably want the disk for the Panny too.

    The Optoma will definitely give you that extra brightness that you will appreciate that when working with clients, especially if you have to take the projector to them.

    One downside you will have to look into is the lens - it is typical of DLP's only a 1.2:1 not the 2:1 of the Panny. The lens though is pretty long throw, so it may work on your back wall. The same General Performance page under Lens throw... gives you distances for a 100" diagonal. You can use that to figure out distance for other screen sizes to see if it will work for your room.

    PS. No lens shift.

    If the HD72 doesn't work for you, the Panny will still do a nice job. It's another one of my favorites. -a
     
  8. Parker Clack

    Parker Clack Schizophrenic Man
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    Art:

    I have increased your post count.
     

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