Classroom Projector Report: Hitachi Projectors Commentary
The Hitachi projectors we considered in this years Classroom Projector Report (the iPJ-AW250N - click for full review) did not have any direct relatives, so we decided to look at another Hitachi series, which consists of the CP-WX3014WN, CP-X2015WN, CP-X3014WN and CP-X4014WN projectors.
6/24/2012 - Art Feierman
Hitachi Projectors - A Quick Look
|Hitachi CP-WX3014WN||Hitachi CP-X2015WN||Hitachi CP-X3014WN||Hitachi CP-X4014WN|
What they all have in common:
3LCD technology, 3000:1 contrast ratio, HDMI, Monitor Out (VGA), closed captioning, network notification, network control, USB input, remote mousing, filters that must be changed after 5000 hours, don't have to unmount projector to change lamp, 3 years parts/labor warranty, no 3D capabilities
As the table above indicates , the CP-WX3014WN (click for full specs) is a 3LCD projector with native WXGA (1200x800) resolution. It is considered portable, weighing in at just 7.9 lbs, and has very good brightness (3000 lumens). The CP-WX3014WN also has a 3000:1 contrast ratio, which means that blacks are a little bit blacker relative to whites than would be a projector with a lower contrast ratio. The CP-WX3014WN has a 1.2:1 zoom ratio, which is pretty limited but typical.
The CP-WX3014WN, like all of its siblings we will discuss below, has an HDMI input and a Monitor Out (VGA) output. This connectivity allows you to hook your projector up to your laptop, satellite/cable box, gaming console, etc. for dynamic presentations. The USB input also allows you to have hassle-free presentations straight from a thumb drive - you don't even need to hook up to a computer!
It also has wireless networking capabilities, like its siblings (though for the CP-X2015WN the wireless networking is optional). All of these projectors also have network control and network notification features, which let you operate your projector over a network and keep you aware of needed maitenance. The CP-WX3014WN also has close captioning and remote mousing capabilities. The CP-WX3014WN's lamp can last for 3000 hours in full power, and up to 6000 hours in eco-mode. It also has an 8W stereo, which means that there are two speakers (one on each side of the projector). These 8W are a pretty decent amount - it can handle a small/medium conference room or classroom with a small/medium audience.
All in all, at $941, the CP-WX3014WN is affordable and will get the job done! But if you'd like higher brightness, the CP-X3014WN and CP-X4014WN projectors are slightly brighter (3200 and 4000 lumens, respectively). If you want longer lamp life, the CP-X2015WN will last you 2000 hours longer (5000 hours in full power). If you don't require widescreen, any of the other three are suitable for you. Or, if you use a lot of sound in your presentations, consider the CP-X2015WN because it has twice the speaker power (16W stereo speakers).
Compared to the rest of the family, the CP-X2015WN (click for specifications) is the least expensive (MAP $661). It is the first of the 3 XGA (1024x768 native resolution) projectors in the family.
The CP-X2015WN projector is the heaviest in the series at 8.2 lbs., which is still portable enough to move from room to room without breaking a sweat. The CP-X2015WN is also the least bright at 2400 lumens.
As we briefly mentioned above, however, the CP-X2015WN has the best lamp life of all four projectors, which is 5000 hours in full power and 6000 hours in eco-mode. It also has the bigger speaker, 16W stereo speakers, which means it can handle twice the sound of the other three.
The CP-X2015WN is the only one in the series that does not have wireless networking built in. However, the wireless networking is still available as an optional add-on. However, it offers the same network control, network notification, USB input, HDMI input and Monitor Out that the others have. The CP-X2015WN also has 1.2:1 zoom ratio and the same 3 year parts and labor warranty all four have.
The CP-X2015WN has a replacement lamp that costs $279, which is pretty pricey. But because of the long lamp life, you won't have to replace as often! And for the low MAP ($661), it's still very affordable overall.
It's bigger, less bright, and the wireless networking isn't a given, but the CP-X2015WN projector is cheap, it'll last you a bit longer before you need to change the lamp, and it can handle more sound. If you're on a budget, have sound requirements and don't need the WXGA or the wireless networking, we're fans of the CP-X2015WN.
Another step up is the Hitachi CP-X3014WN (click for specs). It is just like the first projector discussed (the CP-WX3014WN), except non-widescreen - hence the identical name except for the missing W). It costs a bit more than the previous two at $845 (MAP), and it's the brightest of the two we've looked at so far (though the last projector in the series will surpass it). It is back down to 7.9 lbs., portable enough, and is XGA (1024x768) native resolution (not widescreen).
It has the same 8W stereo speakers as two of its siblings, which is adequate for a smaller room and audience. It also has wireless networking for cable-free, hassle-free presentations. The CP-X3014WN has a shorter lamp life (3000 hours in full power and 6000 hours in eco-mode), and an even pricier replacement lamp ($320). But that pricier lamp gets you more lumens - 3200 to be exact. The CP-X3014WNh as a 1.14:1 zoom ratio, which isn't anything to write home about.
Basically, if you want wireless networking and a few more lumens, this one is a good choice. It is virtually identical to the projector below, the more expensive CP-X4014WN.
The CP-X4014WN XGA projector is the most expensive in the series at $1596 (MAP). For that higher price tag, you get 4000 lumens (the highest brightness), a 7.7 lb. projector (the most lightweight), and wireless networking. It has the same 8W stereo speakers as most of its siblings, and a pretty standard 1.20:1 zoom ratio. The lamp life is average - 3000 hours in full power and 6000 hours in eco-mode.
This one is great: 3000:1 contrast ratio, HDMI, Monitor Out (VGA), closed captioning, network notification, network control, USB input, remote mousing, wireless networking, etc.... Plus brighter? If you can shell out the extra bucks, the CP-X4014WN is a solid contender.