What is the best projector to buy?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Alyssa, Dec 12, 2001.

  1. Alyssa

    Alyssa Auditioning

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    Hi I went to my cousin's house the other day and he has this phenomenal projector that he said cost about $8000. I was speechless [​IMG] from the quality of it to ask if it was just the projector alone that cost that much or if there were assemblies to it that adds up to $8000. Needless to say I want one, so what I am asking is what is the best brand of projector to buy without going broke?, (I am willing to spend no more than $4000 on a projector) but I am still looking for really good quality..please help[​IMG]
    thanks
     
  2. Charles Wan

    Charles Wan Auditioning

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    I would suggest that you go to www.avsforum.com
    and look into one of the bulletin boards there.
    Lots of information.
    Give yourself enough time to look around.
    I am shopping around, too. After 2 months, still looking...
     
  3. Bob McLaughlin

    Bob McLaughlin Screenwriter

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    I feel your pain! At least you have the $$$ at this point, I am still saving my nickels. In the meantime, do your homework.
    A pretty informative site is www.projectorcentral.com. They talk about all sorts of common questions, like SVGA v. XGA resolution, DLP vs. LCD, etc. Another cool feature is the ability to enter various features that you are looking for, and it will pull up whatever projectors they list that fill those requirements. Also a source for used projectors if you're looking to save a few bucks.
    If you want to buy a whole package, check out http://www.projectors-now.com/homelcdthr.htm
     
  4. Phu Vo

    Phu Vo Stunt Coordinator

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    Alyssa,
    The best projector for the money in terms of image quality is the NEC LT150. Currently sells for around $2300. There are better projectors, but they cost more then the $4000 limit that you have stated. Do a search on www.avsforum.com in the digital projector section on info on the LT150 and also check out www.projectorcentral.com. As a caution, don't buy the projector without demoing the unit. You may be that one person in ten that is susceptible to the rainbow of effect.
    BTW, what was the make on model of that unit that you saw?
    ........and welcome to the forum.
     
  5. Alyssa

    Alyssa Auditioning

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    thanks for the feedback folks, I'll check out those sites......

    by the way Phu Vo i don't know what the make of the unit was that I saw but I am guessing it was probably something from Sony because they make almost everything...
     
  6. MarcM

    MarcM Auditioning

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    I would recommend being patient. Just jumping in would be bad. Sony sure does make a lot of things but the best projectors they do not. I am going to be purchasing a projector also. My intentions are to hold tight for just a little while longer. There are lots of options out there. For example a sony vh 11 would offer easy set up but horrendous contrast ratio. a dlp unit would offer fairly easy setup but would cast a rainbow like affect on the screen. A dila would offer great contrast no rainbow, but would require a lot of setup. See my point? Audition lots of projectors pick whats right for you then buy. You may also want to look at used projectors. This could get you into a higher end projector for a reasonable price. Good luck!
     
  7. VicRuiz

    VicRuiz Second Unit

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    STOP! Don't go to the digital section, please! For $4000 you can get an excellent low-hour CRT projector that will give you picture quality unequaled by any digital projector. Please go to the CRT Projectors section of AVS Forum, not the digital one.
     
  8. MarcM

    MarcM Auditioning

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    Vic dont you think it would be best for this person to audition all sorts of projection technology and decide for himself.? Crt included.
     
  9. VicRuiz

    VicRuiz Second Unit

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    Sure, but everyone here is recommending only digital projectors so I have to carry the flag for the old tried and true CRT. Besides, everyone knows that in picture quality alone, CRT is King.
     
  10. Garry C

    Garry C Auditioning

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    I bought the NEC VT540 after over a year of deciding. I had it narrowed down to the NEC, inFocus 350 and the Sony VW-HT10.

    I compared the three units head-to-head at the same time. I had a rep come into my office and we had a 'show-down'.

    By far the Sony was the best picture quality and features, however, also the most expensive (about US$5000). That was more that I wanted to spend! The other two are around US$2500.

    InFocus has a digital chip (DLP), however, I didn't find the colors as warm as the NEC. (I hope I don't offend InFocus fans)

    After owning the NEC for three months now, I'm glad I did it! I think the choice is all about personal preference.

    Good luck!
     
  11. MarcM

    MarcM Auditioning

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    Well Im not about to preach digital over crt. However almost all televisions, with the exceptions of some new ones, are and were catode ray tubes. Ive seen recently some dila devices with htpcs and some calibration that beat some of these units. As for crt projection, well a well scaled crt on the right screen in the right room with the right native scource from the right distance from the right.................well you get the idea. Never the less a crt is hard to beat Ill give you that.
     
  12. Gil D

    Gil D Supporting Actor

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    I really appreciate the portability of these little digital projectors. I have been enjoying a 100" screen with my NEC LT150 in my no-light controlled living room during the evening until I can get a dedicated room for it. Something not really possible with a big ole CRT.

    For the $2300 I paid for a new unit sometime ago I am quite pleased. Not to mention I can sleep easy knowing I have that 3 year Instacare warranty from NEC. A nice little PJ for the price until the new 16:9 WXGA DLP with 5X speed color wheels or hi CR 16:9 WXGA LCDs (like the PLV60)are comparatively priced.
     
  13. Henry Carmona

    Henry Carmona Screenwriter

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  14. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    It's amusing that those that don't own and have never setup a CRT projector always preach about how "difficult to setup and maintain" a CRT projector is. It would be more beneficial if folks would post about what they have experience with and not conjecture about things with which they have no experience. [​IMG]
    I'm a CEDIA member and custom installer and I've seen (and in some cases installed) just about every viable product out there. In my personal theater I have an NEC CRT projector because image quality is of the most importance to me. I have a dedicated room. A dedicated room and complete control over ambient light are imperative if ANY front projection device is used and image quality is the top priority. A DLP, D-ILA or LCD will wash out just as quickly as a CRT projector if there is uncontrolled ambient light in the room. For casual viewing digital projectors have an advantage over CRT because they offer a brighter, more viewable image with some light present. It is by no means an accurate image in terms of black level or contrast ratio, particularly when there is ambient light present.
    Digital projectors ARE easier to setup and maintain. However, a properly setup CRT that is operating within its' parameters requires little to no maintenance and converging over time. I adjust my convergence once every six months or so to correct for very slight errors that occur over time. Nearly all of these errors would not be caught by someone that didn't have a trained eye. So let's dispell that *constant maintenance and convergence* rumor. Most projectors that require such maintenance have been abused, are run on overly large screens and overdriven, were setup by amateurs and are not operating within proper parameters.
    Every projector technology has its' shortcomings. LCD, even on a gray screen has poor contrast ratio and black level. DLP has better blacks and contrast (still well short of CRT) and the rainbow effect is quite annoying and (for me) detracts too much from the viewing experience. D-ILA has better blacks, still requires expensive tweaking by a professional to have a truly viewable image and is still quite expensive. CRT requires a smaller screen to operated optimally and must be carefully driven to avoid phosphor burn. Regards.
     
  15. Kimmo Jaskari

    Kimmo Jaskari Screenwriter

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    Well, one big disadvantage with CRT is the sheer physical size of it, not to mention the weight. A Sony G-70 weighs about 80 kilograms and you need a forklift to move it from point A to point B.

    Ok, so I'm exaggerating, but you can't mount something like that on a normal ceiling without first reinforcing it, especially if you plan to sit under it. 80 kilos of projector would most likely kill you if it fell on your head... and that is not an exaggeration.

    That leaves you with few options - basically the only really sensible variation would be to have a table that was specially designed to serve as a huge hushbox for the projector, thus quieting it and hiding it from view.

    Most digital projectors weigh a fraction of that and are much smaller to boot, and thus far easier to both set up and mount on ceilings, etc. You may not get the ultimate available picture quality, but you can get fairly close with machines like the Sharp 9000 (which is way out of the price range for this discussion, though, at over $8000).

    If I were setting up a dedicated room in a house that I were the owner of, I would without a doubt go with CRT. However, my own FP will be set up in my living room in a rented apartment... and thus I have regretfully more or less had to give up on CRT.
     
  16. VicRuiz

    VicRuiz Second Unit

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    I live in a rented apartment as well, and the projector is set up in the living room. All I had to do was forfeit the security deposit to cover the cost of the repairs when I leave. [​IMG]
     
  17. Micheal

    Micheal Screenwriter

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    It's simple really, if you have a dedicated room and want the best quality picture for the price... get a CRT. If you want something small and portable that you can watch with the lights on... get a digital PJ.
    If you're VERY picky and the thought of dead pixels popping up on your screen would drive you mad... keep away from LCD.
    If you're bothered by the colour "rainbow" effect that most DLP's produce... keep away from DLP.
    If you don't want a beast in your room that you have to take some time with to set up and converge... keep away from CRT.
    I personally went with a dedicated HT and a Marquee 8000 CRT projector.[​IMG] Best blacks in town and I watch my movies with the lights off! [​IMG]
     
  18. Henry Carmona

    Henry Carmona Screenwriter

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    We forget that this is for Alyssa.
    She more than likely will have this installed by whomever she purchases it from.
    So forget about lugging this or that around.
    What is important is the competency of the calibrationist.
    Are her chances better with a LCD, DPL or CRT?
    I doubt shes as critical a viewer as our friendly CEDIA man here, but i could be wrong.
    PS-Maybe i dont own a CRT, but i dont have to own one to hear about the constant, expensive, maintenance my buddy has to do to keep his up.
     
  19. NathanP

    NathanP Supporting Actor

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    Hi Alyssa,

    Welcome to the forum.

    Welll, here's what I suggest.

    Crt--

    I just purchased one for $125.. I bought it local from some guy who didn't know whta he was doing.. this thing cost $9000 new.

    You should know that a louzy CRT projector can look even better then a good LCD projector..

    And because of the large supply of CRT's you can find a nice one, that looks like your friends' $9000 one for well under $500...

    Or you can go LCD, which is not as good, but much lighter, easier to set-up, and prettier..

    Nathan
     
  20. Braden_C

    Braden_C Auditioning

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    OK, first post, but that got my interest.
    Many CRT's for less than $500?????
    Please advise where I might start looking for such things... they would be worth it just to try one out...
    Thanks in advance
     

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