Acer H6500 Home Theater Projector Review

The Acer H6500 is a very small, very bright, home entertainment projector. It is not really designed for a dedicated home theater, but rather a family room, basement, spare bedroom, or occasionally outside at night.

NOTE: We converted the first several sections of this review when we switched to our new site, but the Acer H6500 has been replaced by the newer Acer H6510BD. Check out that review here.

Acer H6500 Projector Overview

Let’s start with the basics. This Acer H6500 is a single-chip DLP projector. It offers true 1080p resolution at a price point well under $1000. Officially, street price seems to be $899, however as this projector gets out there on the street, I would not be overly surprised to find it for $800 or less, over time. Unlike the more expensive H9500bd Acer projector that we reviewed months ago, this Acer H6500 lacks 3-D. I guess that truly makes it entry level.  At the moment though (as this goes to press), it is mostly at Best Buy, best I can tell.

Interestingly, this Acer H6500 projector claims 10,000: 1 contrast. It does this without using a dynamic iris, rather it uses the latest lamp dimming technologies. This technique, by the way, is far from new. Sanyo was one home theater projector manufacturer, who’s been using this type of technology for at least a half dozen years. It’s becoming more widely used and it’s working better, and we’re finding it in both business and home projectors. More on it below in the Features area.

Small, and rather portable, one surprise is this Acer’s lack of an internal speaker or two. I would have expected to find audio, due to the H6500′s crossover heritage. Having a speaker inside, would for some, make this a better projector for moving from room to room, or taking outside in the backyard for an evening movie session. No matter, there are other ways of handling the audio.

This small Acer H6500 is rather bright. It claims 2100 lumens, and measures in that ballpark. That’s plenty of lumens for most family room types of setups. When it comes to actual color and picture quality, the H6500 performs rather nicely for its price. That said, the H6500 lacks a full set of calibration controls. There are a number of controls available, however this would not be an overly easy projector to calibrate. And few people buying this projector will spend for a calibration that could cost half as much as the projector. As a result, we are primarily concerned with many preset color modes provided right out-of-the-box.

The good news is many of those modes look really good. As I write this I’ve got the EU football tournament on (soccer as we call it here), and the grass looks really green the skin tones look very good, the picture’s got punch, and I’ve even got a some ambient light in the room.

Below you will find some highlights, and the basic specs. You can also link to more specs and the data sheet. Further down, we’ll look at some of the special features of this Acer H6500 projector.

Highlights

  • 2D projector with exceptional brightness
  • Ready to go, right out of the box, with 8 color mode choices, including Cinema 1, REC709, Sports, Games, and Dynamic, to name a few
  • Dynamic iris for improved black level performance
  • Frame Interpolation (but not CFI)
  • Brightest in class
  • Suitable for theater or family room, particularly good for the living – family – other room environment
  • Excellent placement flexibility
  • Very Long life lamp
  • Zoom lens with wide range, lens shift, for placement flexibility
  • 2 HDMI
  • One year warranty
  • Street price around $1000 – makes for an excellent price/performance value

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