Sharp DT200 vs XV-H37U?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by ron feinberg, Oct 16, 2003.

  1. ron feinberg

    ron feinberg Auditioning

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    For about the past 5 years, I have used an older LCD Front Projector Sharp XV-H37U. I have been pleased with it overall. It is my only experience with front projection. For the past year, it has begun to deteriorate in image quality. Without getting into details about that, I am ready to step up to a newer model.

    I checked out the Sharp DT200 Theago. It seems nicely similar to what I have, with a reasonable price tag. It is DLP, and has the basic feature set I want. My concern is regarding image quality and brightness. I cannot find any specs on my old XV-H37U to indicate an ANSI Lumens specification for it. So I have no way to know if the newer 600 ANSI Lumens of the DT-200 will be brighter or lesser than what I am already used to. How about the overall image quality compared to the older unit?

    Does anyone have an impression or experience if the image/brightness quality of this newer model will be superior or inferior to the older LCD projector that I have grown used to?

    Any advice or feedback is welcome. I don't want to spend more than about $2500, and I am partial to this Sharp projector due to it's availablity in my area, and similarity to what i am familiar with.

    I just don't want to "step down" from what i already have.... BTW, I am not in a place that I can view/demo the unit before buying. Certainly not in a side by side comparison with my XV-H37U. So I am looking for some practical advise before I order it. (I suppose I can always return it, but that's a pain...I'd rather get it right up front...pun intended).

    Thank you very much for any help.

    Ron
     
  2. ChadLB

    ChadLB Screenwriter

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    More info: viewing(dvd's, tv etc) Room lighting, short throw or long throw projector and anything else of importance.
     
  3. ron feinberg

    ron feinberg Auditioning

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    OK....

    My room is a dedicated Family room/theatre with moderate ambient light in the day time. Gets quite dark at night. As I have no idea what the ANSI Lumens of the XV-H37U is, I can't tell you, but IT has been fine as far as brightness in this room, even in the daytime, for the past 5 years.

    I watch DVD, Digital Cable TV, and some VHS. I have been using simple composite video connection all these years...though I plan to set up S-Video with the new projector....not too interested in HDTV at this point. All of my video equipment is above average consumer grade stuff.

    My current projector sits about 12 feet back from my 80" 4:3 Sharp screen (hard mounted on the wall). The seating is about 14-15 feet back. The room is about 20" by 12" rectangle. The screen sits on a short wall, so I'm using the legnth of the room for distance.

    I believe the DT-200 comes with a "short throw" lense. But I can ceiling mount it where it needs to go distance wise to accomodate the best image. I am a little confused if I need to go with the Long Throw version (about the same price) in my room....but I have been told by a local dealer that the DT-200 should be fine in my room.

    Thanks again,

    Ron
     
  4. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    The H37U is 250 a.l. compared to the 600 a.l. of the Theago so the image will be a big improvement in not only the brightness but the contrast ratio, which is around 1200:1 if you step up to that model.

    How much can you get the Theago for? You did mention a top budget of $2500 and availability in your area. I assume most of your viewing will be widescreen. If so, a consideration may be to get a 16x9 setup (projector & screen) rather than the 4x4 800x600 resolution setup. There are a few projectors that can be had that are native 16x9 should you go that route, that fall in your budget, specifically...

    - Sony HS10 @ 1366x768, 1200a.l., 700:1c.r.
    - Sony HS20 @ 1366x768, 1400a.l., 1200:1c.r. ($3000)
    - Panasonic L300U @ 960x540, 800a.l., 800:1c.r.
    - Sanyo PLVZ1 @ 964x544, 700a.l., 800:1c.r.

    ...for instance. I would say, if you could stretch the budget to accomodate the $3K Sony HS20 you will be better off. Just to give you an idea, projector 1 (800x600 Sharp Theago) and projector 2 (1366x768 Sony HS20) will go head to head. You demo Toy Story on both projectors which is a movie with a 1.78:1 aspect ratio.

    On PJ#1, the actual onscreen resolution will be 800x338 with the rest of the picture devoted to displaying the black bars at the top and bottom.

    On PJ#2, the actual resolution will be the full 1366x768 due to the projectors native 16x9 panels.

    Keep in mind that if you watch any 4x3 material on PJ#1, the image will fill the whole 4x3 screen and have an actual screen resolution of 800x600. On PJ#2 however, you will have the image with black bars to the left and right of the image and an onscreen resolution of 1024x768.

    Regarding the DT200 in your room, you have the depth of 20' to work with so you are fine. The Sony HS20 is also a fairly long throw projector like the Sharp 200 but you have the space.
     
  5. ron feinberg

    ron feinberg Auditioning

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    That is great information. THANK YOU!

    One concern I have about these other projectors that I am currently unfamiliar with (yes, I am basically a newbie to all this) is whether it will "save" settings of screen size and masking setup. I was considering an NEC projector that I read was a very good one, and was disappointed to find out that every time you turn it on, you have to reset the masking, keystone, etc. What I love about my XV-H37U is that it is pretty much "set it and forget it".

    I am pleased to hear that you feel the DT-200 will have a superior image/brightness to the H37U. But I am concerned about the 800X600 res. It is hard to equate that to what I now have with the H37U, beacuse it wasn't spec'd that way back then. In IT's manual, there is no mention of resolution in that manner. Just the number of horizontal TV lines. So....would I expect the picture of the DT-200 to be More or Less resolute than the H37U?

    Regarding going 16:9, I would have to say that we use the projector FAR more to view 4:3 material. It's basically our primary Television. Of course, when we rent DVD's, we view 16:9 material with masking. On the 80" screen it has still been big enough for us, mostly. I do crave a 16:9 setup sometimes, but since I already have a custom built in screen, my inclination is to stick with 4:3 for now. So that being the case...is there another 4:3 projector around $2000 (the price I have been quoted out the door for the DT-200) that would be "better" for me?

    Thank you SO MUCH for helping a newbie out!

    Ron
     
  6. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    I think the H37U is 640x480 (VGA resolution) similar to my old projector the Sharpvision XVZ1U. Make no mistake, the DT200 will be a large jump in picture quality but not as large as going to the Sony HS20. All of the digital projectors these days save the settings so you need not worry about that.

    My own projector for instance has 6 settings so I can calibrate each one, and have various settings for each one.
     
  7. ron feinberg

    ron feinberg Auditioning

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    Projectorcentral.com is "higly recommending" the NEC LT240K as a projector in my price range. I got excited about this projector based on their review, and a few other posts I read. But, then I came accross a user review that indicated that IT does not save masking and picture settings, and must be set up each time you power up. It got me concerned that other projectors in this price range might be similar. This seems to be a silly oversight by NEC to not have such a fundamental feature on this type of a unit.

    I think at this point I am going to try the DT-200 based on the excellent information I have received here today on this thread. My biggest concern was that the DT-200 would be inferior to the XV-H37U. In it's day, the XV-H37U was a more pricey unit. I was initially sceptical that now a $2000 unit could be superior to it. But it seems the "technology to price ratio" has caught up nicely in this case. I may not be getting the cutting edge by todays standards....but for about half of what I paid 5 years ago, I seem to be getting a superior image/brightness. This is a very good thing.

    If anyone still has any suggestions about other 4:3 projectors in this price range that would be a better pick than the Sharp DT-200, I would be very interested and grateful.

    Thank you,

    Ron
     
  8. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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