Optoma HD23 Review
This is an entry level 1080p projector from Optoma, but this thing was amazingly great for gaming. Virtually no lag, at least in comparison to the Epson 3020 I reviewed last. Keep in mind that during offline game play you will probably not notice the lag, unless you are playing a game like Guitar Hero. If you like to do a lot of online gaming then you will be at a disadvantage if your projector lags. I really loved the Epson for movies, but the Optoma does a great job with movies, and games. The color on the HD23 seemed to pop a bit more than the Epson 3020 with Street Fighter IV. I don’t know if it will translate into the pictures, but there was a noticeable difference. My nice Canon DSLR was on loan, so I only was able to get some shots of Street Fighter IV with it. I tried taking some shots with my Samsung S3, but no matter what phone you have, it’s not the same as using a DSLR…so I skipped on those pictures.
If you are a moderate to extreme online gamer, then definitely save some cash and go with the Optoma HD23. The Epson 3020 has 3D, but I see that as a bonus feature, not a necessity. It is a fun gimmick that people may use a couple to few times a year. From my experience, wearing 3D glasses is a bit of a turnoff to a lot of people. That may be the reason 3D was almost non-existent at CES this year, based on all the reports I heard from CES. I think it is a neat little feature, but I lump it in with CFI. It’s something that I can do without a majority of the time.
I only watched about 30 minutes of the following Blu-ray movies on this projector, just to get a feel of how it would perform for movie viewing:
The games I played were as follows (all PS3 games):
Street Fighter IV
Red Dead Redemption
Black Ops 2
If you are looking for amazing color, a nice sharp picture, and good shadow detail then this is the projector for you. As Art stated in his review found here, the black levels are only decent, and the front grill of the projector leaks some light. There’s no lens shift, but it’s a rarity on projectors priced under $1,000. This one fits a gamer’s budget and looks great at the same time. It’s also a lot smaller than the Epson 3020, which makes it a lot more portable to take to a friend’s house for some XXL gaming, or LAN party.
Below are the pics I promised:
Now to the meat of things:
Less than $1,000
Black level is only decent, not great
The remote’s backlight is a bit on the bright side, some may see this as a plus
Light leakage through front grill
For the money you can’t go wrong, if your primary goal is gaming. This thing looked great with movies too, but I actually preferred the image of the Epson 3020 for movies. The Epson 3020 is priced at about $400 more than the Optoma, so it’s not really a fair comparison in that regard.Hopefully I get another good gamer next time around. Until we meet again!