Replacing RPTV w/ projector

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Travis, Feb 11, 2006.

  1. Travis

    Travis Second Unit

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    I currently have a Hitachi 57s500 which has an excellent picture. I am buying a new house w/ a room that I can dedicate to a HT. I am contemplating selling the Hitachi in favor of a front projector but am new to the whole fp scene. I am looking to spend around 1800-2000 new/used. If you can get a lot better for a little more I will certainly look at it. I am not a huge DLP/LCD fan when it comes to rear projection (the picture just isn't what a CRT is) but maybe they are better in a fp? My only requirements are HD capability and a picture that will be better than my Hitachi when viewed on a 90-100" screen. Any and all input is greatly appreciated. Also a good fixed screen recommendation would be appreciated as well.
     
  2. Andrew Pratt

    Andrew Pratt Producer

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    Depending on your source it just isn't going to be possible to get a "better" picture then a good CRT displaying a smaller image. That's not to say that a high quality source being displayed on a nice screen from a higher resolution projector isn't going to look good b/c it will its just that you're blowing up a picture much larger then your 57" TV so you'll see a lot more of the problems from your source devices. DVD's are good but are still fairly low resolution sources compared to HD feeds as i'm sure you're well aware. Now all that said there's nothing like watching movies/sporting events on 90" plus screens as you get the viewing angles that suck you in vs watching TV. Also I hope this isn't going to be your only TV as you won't want to watch too many hours on it otherwise the bulbs are going to get pricey.
     
  3. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    Travis, there is a review of a pj i'm seriously jonesing for here. it is out of you budget now (on the web its avail for $5-6000), but the review is very well written and comprehensive and you should get a good idea of issues involved with this technology and a practical set of examples where the difference in pj costs lies.

    my target budget is around $4k and i'm hoping that this particular projector hits that some time this year (with the introduction of more 1080 pjs to market forcing the price down on these 'old hat' 720ps- as well as people selling off their 720ps to upgrade to 1080).

    you will probably get a lot of recommendations for Optomas (the HD72, h78DC-3) or the Panasonic A900.
    these all are generally in your price range now, and since the whole area of front projection is a novelty to you at this point, you may be happy with them- but they really can't match the pic of a crt (of these three the H78 may come closest, but the line of Optomas seem to run very hot, and may be insufficently cooled- which affects bulb life).
    the H72 uses a white segment in its color wheel that increases brightness and also increase a lot of unpleasant artifacts and pumps colors to a more cartoon level.

    however i would say that getting an image that would rival what you get from that CRT, but from a much more immersive screen size, is absolutely do-able.
    just not at the $2K level (even used)
    if you go up to $3-4K used- definitely.

    for myself i prefer DLP projectors over LCD.
    as for screens, you can easily make one yourself that will be fairly neutral/low gain and cost around $40.
    i also just saw a grey screen from Da-Lite that is supposed to be fairly inexpensive and looked great.
     
  4. GeorgeAB

    GeorgeAB Second Unit

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    G. Alan Brown
    In that price range you should look at 720p LCDs. Your biggest challenge will be achieving satisfying blacks that emulate what you're used to with a CRT RPTV. From the outset, front projection blacks necessitate a dark viewing environment. Light colored room surfaces will reflect light back onto the screen, which tends to wash out color saturation and turn any attempt at producing black on a white surface into gray.

    For a smooth CRT-like appearance, don't exceed a 30 degree viewing angle with the screen size/viewing distance relationship. At 720p a smaller viewing angle is probably a better choice. A slightly smaller image will provide increased brightness and better overall sharpness.

    The contrast, light output and dynamic range you are used to will likely require a gray base screen with gain. That will limit wide horizontal viewing angles. You're most fortunate to be able to plan a dedicated room from the beginning.

    Best regards and beautiful pictures,
    G. Alan Brown, President
    CinemaQuest, Inc.

    "Advancing the art and science of electronic imaging"
     
  5. Travis

    Travis Second Unit

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    Thanks for the replies thus far. I am fairly spoiled with the excellent picture my CRT produces and it might be tough for me to get away from it. The room is going to be painted a dark gray and there is only one window to cover so it should be fairly dark. The viewing angle isn't much of a problem as the room is unfortunately more narrow than I would have liked. I am realizing that I should hold on to the 57" for most of my viewing and save up for a pj in the 4-5K range. I was originally thinking of getting a Sony sxrd lcd this summer so this might work better instead.
     

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