Canon SX50 - General Performance
Size and Weight: Dimensions - 11.2 x 11.3 x 3.8 inches, 8.6 pounds
The Canon Realis SX50 projector comes with a very small remote, with more than half of the buttons being backlit at the touch of a button.. Computer 1 and 2 have their own buttons, and there is one for toggling between composite and S-video, the same as on the projector's control panel. The projector does offer basic remote mousing, with arrow keys, no disk pad. there is also a right mouse click button and page up, and page down buttons.
The Realis SX50 projector remote also offers digital zoom in, a video mute, a freeze button, volume buttons, the backlit button, and a cute feature called the Spot button which offers a choice of two sized circles that it puts on the screen that you can move around with the arrows. Either of these sized spots, appear at full brightness, while the rest of the screen becomes noticeably darker, thus the spot light analogy. There are also buttons for Menu, Keystone correction and Auto PC to resync and adjust the image to maximize image quality.
Canon SX50's Menus
The three main menus, are well organized, relatively small (letting you see the bulk of the image so that you can actually see what your adjustments are doing. There are a number of sub-menus off of the main menus. Below are pictures of each of the three main menus and several sub-menus.
There is extensive control of color, with Low, Medium and High settings, plus the ability to finely adjust color with the 6 primary/secondary color adjustments (red, green, blue, yellow, magenta, cyan). A separate gamma control allows you to further affect (and typically lighten up) moderate colors while maintaining the darkest and brightest areas of the image with minimal change.
Lens Throw - Distance to the Screen:
For a 100" diagonal screen, the Canon Realis SX50 projector can be placed as close as 9.8 feet, and as far back as 16.4 feet.
Projector Lamp Life
The Canon Realis SX50 projector (strangely not published on their spec sheets) is 2000 hours in full power mode according to Canon. They do not list a lamp life for low power mode, but if typical, expect 2500 - 3000 hours.
If the Canon SX50 has one significant shortcoming, it is noise levels. Rated at 37 db in full power (34 in low power) mode, it is noiser (but not much) than many sub-10 pound projectors, but is still significantly quieter than some like Epson's popular XGA (and 3.8 lb.) Powerlite 732 projector - rated 41db.) In a small room you will notice the fan noise, however the pitch is pretty low, so while noticeable, it should not pose an issue, and I seriously doubt anyone would find the projector unacceptable because of noise - in either mode.
I normally don't mention this, but the Canon comes with some cables you normally don't find, in part due to the DVI-I input.
You get a DVI-DVI cable (6 ft) for hooking up to a digital source, and also a DVI-I - HD15 (for hooking up to a traditional analog computer input. You also get a cable for composite video and audio, a power cord, a USB cable, and a component video cable (HD15 - to plug into RGB2/component on the projector) and 3 RCA connectors for your component video source. There is no S-video cable provided, and strangely, also no HD15-HD15 computer cable (which would be used with your typical computer's analog monitor out, going into the RGB2 port. (That cable is available almost everywhere, and you'ld only need it if you had two Analog computer sources.
The Canon Realis SX50 projector allows you to save a graphic - a logo or whatever pleases you, to appear on "blank" screens (when there is no source signal.
Hey, I good one. It is more comprehensive and clear than most. It actually even tells you why you would use most controls. Considering the generally poor quality of manuals, this one is a pleasant surprise. There is even a glossary of terms.