720p Projector

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by thebiggoose, Mar 3, 2007.

  1. thebiggoose macrumors 6502

    thebiggoose

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2006
    #1
    I need advice on a 720p projector. I won't be buying it until summer. So i would like some advice. How cheap will the be then? What re some good brands? Where should I buy?
     
  2. Mydel macrumors 6502a

    Mydel

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2006
    Location:
    Sometimes here mostly there
    #2
    I have panasonic and like it a lot. All depends what are you gonna use it. Please look at that sie http://www.projectorreviews.com/ , they have pretty extensive reviews and links to stores.
     
  3. thebiggoose thread starter macrumors 6502

    thebiggoose

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2006
    #3
    i'm prolly gonna use it for my future 360, an external monitor for my mb (haha) and i'm looking into getting an enclosure with HDMI out, i found on for around $100. I'll throw a 500 gigger in there and whoo-eee
     
  4. shu82 macrumors 6502a

    shu82

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    Location:
    Rocket City, AL
    #4
    I seem to do this alot but these guys have never steered me wrong on av stuff, just like the guys here are great for mac stuff:

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forumdisplay.php?f=68

    AVSForum rules for all the advice you need on Projectors. My advice would be the Mitsubishi HD100u. It is the best 720P projector under 1K, and will probably be my next new toy
     
  5. Mydel macrumors 6502a

    Mydel

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2006
    Location:
    Sometimes here mostly there
    #5
    Hmm sounds like you gonna use it rather for games and sports than movies. In that case you need something bright. LCD are generally brighter than DLP for the money. I think very good one (Panasonic, Sharp, benQ) will cost you around 2000$ and than you need get a decent screen (300$+). The brightesr from the pack is Panasonic PT-AX100U and I consider it a good buy for around 1800$. DLP's have better blacks but if room is not tottaly dark with some ambient light you cant see it anyway ( at least I cant :D ). Look also for the reviews of BenQ PE-8720. Its consider to be one of the best single DLP home theater projectors now on the market.
     
  6. JAT macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2001
    Location:
    Mpls, MN
    #6
    That's not really true. There are now 720p DLPs that retail for less than a grand. They are plenty bright, certainly on par with the LCDs mentioned. To get serious brightness, you either have to jump way up in price or way down in color quality.

    I happen to own one of those LCDs, btw. Very nice.
     
  7. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a

    GreatDrok

    Joined:
    May 1, 2006
    Location:
    New Zealand
    #7
    InFocus in76

    I am now on my 3rd front projector, all DLP. Prior to buying my first one I tried a bunch of LCD projectors as well as CRTs. The CRTs suffered from scanlines and the LCDs had poor colour and black levels. When I first tried a DLP projector it blew me away. The colour and black was way better than LCDs at the time and it didn't suffer the scanline problems of a CRT. I bought an InFocus LitePro 620 and loved it. Then, after 4 years or so, technology had moved on so I upgraded to an InFocus X-1 which improved the quality of picture significantly as well as being more portable. 4 years on again I upgraded to the in76 which has component, HDMI, DVI, S-video, composite and RGB inputs. It uses a 1280x720 DLP DarkChip 2 which has a real contrast ratio of 3000:1 (some LCD projectors claim more but they get there by automatically dimming the bulb for dark scenes which isn't really a good solution). Brightness and colour fidelity are both excellent too and pretty close to perfectly calibrated right out of the box.

    The projector accepts all HD resolutions currently in use up to 1080p and scales them all to its native resolution. With my 360+HD drive I find it is better to run at 1080i because there is some ghosting on 1080p probably down to long cable runs but 1080i looks identical and doesn't ghost. I find with HD-DVDs it is better to drive the projector at 1080i and let it do the scaling rather than letting the 360 scale down to 720 because there is a definite loss of detail.

    I am currently running this projector onto a 70" Da-Lite screen in a dedicated projection room driven by the 360, a progressive scan DVD player and my old LD player. LD looks OK but is pretty noisy. DVD looks a bit soft since the resolution isn't great but HD-DVD looks stunning. DVD is similar to what the local multiplex can manage. HD-DVD is way better.

    The in76 can be found at pretty reasonable prices, have a look at froogle. There are other DLP projectors too which are also worth looking at and DLP is still top dog for picture quality IMHO but don't take my word for it. Read lots of reviews and if possible see one in action in good viewing conditions.
     
  8. wongulous macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    #8
    I'm buying the Optoma HD70 720p projector. $999, great quality, HDMI and analog inputs. Perfect throw geometry and featureset for my needs (apt living room home theatre, mounted on bookshelf behind seating area).
     
  9. wongulous macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    #9
    Oh, and don't forget to budget for a screen. A painted white wall sucks, and the screens I'm looking at getting are about $150-250 for the best material in a light grey and with mounting hardware.
     
  10. JAT macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2001
    Location:
    Mpls, MN
    #10
    A properly painted wall does not suck. Or other cheap options can be good. I built my own screen for less than $50, and I will put it up against any sub-$500 screen.
     
  11. wongulous macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    #11
    I amend my answer. It doesn't suck. Until you see a screen with micronized reflective particles and with a contrast-enhancing light grey colour that is perfectly flat and flawless. Then it's kind of difficult to go back to appreciating a non-screened-setup. Unless you have a 100% light-free room and a perfect wall.

    But if you don't have it in the budget or just don't care that much right away, get a projector and go without a screen and don't think twice. It's still far and away the better option for digital signals and DTV viewing (especially EDTV and HDTV). You can always add it on later.

    And to anyone considering the purchase of a wall-painting kit, don't. It's recently been proven that they are no more than flat super-bright white latex in tinier jars that recommend multiple coats. Granted, this hasn't been proven of every paint-your-wall kit out there, so there may be some with some added reflective particles or mica or something. (If there is, I'd like to see it in person.)
     
  12. JAT macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2001
    Location:
    Mpls, MN
    #13
    You're funny! You make it sound like low-end projector screens are the only reflective substance on the planet.

    A $200 screen will not be perfectly flat. It costs considerably more to get a tensioned screen, at least 2-3 times that amount. Just a thought. Now, if we all had $6K to drop on 2.35 Stewart wall with motorized side panels, we'd do it I'm sure. But alternatives do come up a little rosier for many people.

    Not sure what kits you mean, but if you really want to know about good paint, try goosystems.com. And the DIY Screens forum at AVS.
     

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