What to buy? High end projector OR low end projector and separates?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Kevin Biller, May 11, 2004.

  1. Kevin Biller

    Kevin Biller Agent

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2000
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am at a point of indecision. I want to get my first projector. However I can't decide if I should get a highly regarded one and decent screen (specifically the NEC HT-1100 and a Draper tab tensioned screen) OR get a cheaper screen/projector combo and also upgrade my gear.

    My current stuff consists of: Onkyo Integra 7.1 receiver, a Classe CAP-150 integrated amp which powers my fronts and is used for 2 channel listening. Current TV is 32" Panasonic CRT GAOO. I plan on getting a 16:9 45x80 screen. Speakers are B&W Nautilus 805's in front, HTM-2 center and 602s2 rears + SVS dual 20-39 subs.

    I have a budget of about $5-7K CAN. If I go with the lesser projector, I was considering selling my receiver and integrated amp for a nice pre/pro amp combo like the Anthem AVM-20 and MCA-5. I can get this combo for around $5K, sell my stuff for about $2 and then have about $3 grand left for the projector and screen.

    If I go with NEC HT-1100 and nice screen I am looking at around $7grand. My existing gear would have to do for a while as this blows the budget for this year.

    Does anyone have any insite on the best bang for the buck? Thanks for your info....
     
  2. John Brill

    John Brill Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    0
    You know, I've been debating this myself for a while though I don't seem to have the kind of $$$ you do [​IMG]

    Bottom line, with any projector, you'll never get the resolution you would out of a HDTV but projection is more about size than picture resolution.

    The next debate is LCD vs DLP. Pushers of DLP claim the blacks are better. What I've found with DLP's is since the technology uses colour wheels, if you move your head quickly, you kind of see a rainbow effect. This doesn't happen with LCD projectors and is extremely annoying when playing video games on the big screen [​IMG] I've had a chance to try several projectors (from work) both with LCD and DLP technology and I'm leaning towards LCD.

    Finally, the big debate, is the monitor or the sound most important? Both go hand in hand. If you have big sound, a small picture is very disappointing! The same is true with a large picture and small sound. Thankfully, you can now achieve a very good picture with relatively inexpensive projectors. Any of the new $1000-2500 projectors, IMHO, are as good as the $4000 ones.

    So, with all that said, I'd go with a cheaper projector with a decent screen, achieve the big picture part of the equation and then concentrate in matching it with the complimentary big sound.

    JB
     
  3. BrianKR

    BrianKR Second Unit

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2002
    Messages:
    498
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would think it would come down to what is more important to you, sound or video? What are you more critical of?

    My personal preference is sound over video. I have 6X more money invested in my sound and than I do my video. I keep upgrading my sound setup but I have yet to purchase a projector and screen.
     
  4. Dean Wette

    Dean Wette Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2003
    Messages:
    97
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know if this will help much, but I feel spending roughly equal amounts on the audio and video portions of a Home Theater system strikes a pretty good balance. I think a lot of people shortchange the audio and come away with something much less enjoyable than they could have.

    With that said, I spent (not counting cables/interconnects) about 25% more on audio than video. I'm extremely satisfied with the results.

    Dean
     
  5. Chris Purvis

    Chris Purvis Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    151
    Likes Received:
    0


    I just want to point out that this is totally incorrect.
     
  6. SteveFred

    SteveFred Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2004
    Messages:
    79
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hi everyone,

    I would think you want a balance of good Video/Audio.

    I have seen alot of set-up on here in the past few months and it amazes me that they have very nice HT rooms and great audio equipment and only 27" TV.

    But of course it would be silly to have a 119" screen and a crappy audio either.

    I also agree completely with Chris on John comment about quality of the HD Front projection versus HDRPTV. The lines of res are the same now a days. The Front projector from JVC coming out in the next few months is 1920x1080 which is True HD.

    So all in all Balance is the key to me for an overall complete system.

    Steve
     
  7. John Brill

    John Brill Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2003
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    0


    Chris, my bad, you are correct. I wasn't really thinking here. What I was so badly trying to say was that the resolution on inexpensive projectors was more than adequate for my viewing needs and the picture size advantage more than compensated.

    SVGA (800x600) at $1000 is, IMHO, a good compromise over new projectors doing XGA at 1280x1024 (but are really 1024x768) and will run you $4500.

    So, yes, you can get as good resolution with projectors but the WAF is also important.

    Cheers

    JB
     
  8. Kevin Biller

    Kevin Biller Agent

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2000
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'll add one comment as well. It is not that I think my current sound system is by any means bad. In fact it is probably better that what most have already. It's just that there is always room for improvement.

    Projector wise, I have not been overly impressed with the entry level offerings, thus the consideration of the NEC. There are also comparable units by Toshiba and BenQ as well. I have yet to see one of these mid projectors though. I am just assuming they have improved on faults of the entry level ones, ie. Low resolution, low contrast, poor scalers, etc.

    If these mid level projectors will not meet my expectations, then it is no brainer for me to buy a cheap projector (ie. X1, H30) and then upgrade my source components.
     
  9. Levesque

    Levesque Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2002
    Messages:
    586
    Likes Received:
    0
    Kevin.

    You have a fairly good audio system. My advice would be to go with a better projector.

    I just got a high-end projector 3 weeks ago, and the PQ is simply astonishing. My friends simply don't believe it.

    But be aware of the pro/cons of the mid-level projectors, and be sure to try to see them before buying.

    Rainbows were all over the place for me and the wife with DLP's, so we did choose a 3 chips LCOS. And CR is not everything. My projector doesn't have the best CR, but color dynamics and picture smoothness were more important for us then black level.
     

Share This Page