Epson Home Cinema 3020 vs. Optoma HD25-LV

A short comparison of the Epson Home Cinema 3020 and Optoma HD25-LV home theater projectors.

Comparing the Epson Home Cinema 2030 and the Optoma HD25-LV

This is the battle of the 3D light canons.  True, the Epson Home Cinema 3020 is a tad brighter, especially when you need all the lumens, but is also a “tad” less bright calibrated.   The Epson comes with a two year warranty with a replacement program for both years. That really wups the HD25-LV’s basic one year parts and labor.

The Projectors

Comparing Picture Quality

NOTE: We don’t have any pictures to compare these two projectors side-by-side–they were reviewed at different times. Sorry!

In the slider above, though, are a couple shots of the same images from both projectors. The first image in each pair is from the Epson, and the second is from the Optoma. Check out the individual reviews (Epson Home Cinema 3020 and Optoma HD25-LV) to see more images from each.

Black levels favor the Optoma, and by more than a minimal amount. Dark shadow detail also slightly favors the the Optoma. Where the Epson comes back is in terms of overall color.  The Optoma’s usually very good at skin tones, but the Epson’s calibration seems overall better, with skin tones and other colors consistently looking really good. So, score image quality slightly favoring the Epson.

Comparing Placement Flexibility

Since they are similar in brightness as well, and neither have lens shift, then in treating with your room, Epson’s 1.6:1 zoom definitely gives it more placement flexibility than the Optoma HD25-LV with a minimal 1.2:1 zoom lens.

Comparing 3D

The Optoma is cleaner handling 3D at least when using the optional VESA 3D glasses and emitter, that’s in part because DLP projectors tend to not have their own crosstalk.  But the Epson easily outmuscles the Optoma in terms of 3D brightness.  Even turning down the glasses settings on the Epson to low, it’s still slightly brighter, and a lot brighter in Normal or High, although High definitely shows visible crosstalk artifacts.

The Bottom Line

Overall, the Epson offers a more forgiving image, and doesn’t suffer the sometimes sunburned look of the Optoma in terms of skin tones on darker scenes. Of the two, certainly the Epson is the safer choice.  But it is officially $300 more.  When considering the pricing though, the Epson comes with 2 pair of 3D glasses, while you’ll need to buy 3D glasses, or 3D glasses and emitter, if you go HD25-LV.  That can wipe out anywhere from $40 to $200 of the difference. When I say safer, it’s more user friendly, overall  more forgiving, and has that better warranty.   On the other hand, the HD25-LV gives you that DLP look and feel, and will definitely save you some money, especially if you go 3D with DLP-link glasses, or no 3D at all.


Want more info? Click for the full reviews:
Epson Home Cinema 3020 Review
Optoma HD25-LV Review

News and Comments

  • Abadi

    I want you sir to help to choose the best projector from the below list please …

    1- BenQ w1500
    2- Epson 3020e
    3- BenQ w1070 + 3rd party wireless HDMI transmitter (IOGEAR 5×2 Matrix)
    4- Optoma 25-LV + 3rd party wireless HDMI transmitter (IOGEAR 5×2 Matrix)

    Or recommend me for other projector within $2000
    It’s for Home using ..


    • Asim Ullah

      Which one u decided then “? – i am in the same boat, but i am confuse between , optoma 25-lv, Optoma HD26 and BenQ HT1075

  • Øystein Søreide

    Looks like the projectors had not been calibrated prior to testing. The skin tones on the DLP projector was awful.


      The HD25-LV was calibrated. As I point out in most reviews, however, there are any number of factors in play, that make the photos less than perfect reflections of what’s projected on the screen. Those include:
      Slight color shifts when captured by the camera (Canon 60D) The camera will capture some projectors pretty faithfully, others not so much. This may in part have to do with the camera sensor being affected by light energy outside of the visible wavelength, but being output by the lamp.
      Color shifts added due to heavy compression (minor)
      And finally, your own display.

      Overall, I had some issues with the HD25-LV, but think it was a very good projector. The newer HD50/HD161X, however, is superior. -art

      • Øystein Søreide

        You must most likely have manually set white balance on camera to get it right. edit. Artifact most likely due to colour wheel.

      • Øystein Søreide

        And also DLP has issues when taking photos of it because of the colour wheel. Which the LCD does not have.