Epson Powerlite Pro G6900WU Business Projector Review

POWERLITE PRO G6900WU – TOUR OF THE HARDWARE INCLUDING THE CONTROL PANEL AND BACK INPUT PANEL

G6900WU Overview

The Powerlite Pro G6900WU comes in a matte black finish.  It’s rather small for the punch it packs, weighing in at only 21.5 pounds with standard zoom lens.  The projector measures just under 20 inches wide, and less than 16 inches deep.

The manual zoom lens is center mounted, which, if nothing else, keeps the calculations for having the projector correctly aligned when mounting, just a  bit easier.

Large exhausts are located on either side.  There’s also the button for releasing the interchangeable lenses.  There’s a front IR sensor for the remote, (and a second one on the top and back, that wraps along those two surfaces.

The standard zoom lens has a tremendous amount of range, as it’s a 1.8:1 zoom.  For those wanting more information on the six lenses, go to the last page of this review, and click for the data sheet, which does have that lens information.  The NL version (without the standard zoom lens), is $300 less.

The lenses are a manual affair, so that you focus by the outer barrel, and there is a ring with tabs for rotating to zoom in and out.

There’s a single foot below, in the front, and two screw thread adjustable feet in the rear for a three point stance.

Moving to the top, find the two round lens shift dials, one for vertical, and one for horizontal shift.  That pretty much covers it for the top.  It’s the back, where the rest of the action is.

Facing the back of the G6900WU, all the inputs and connectors – and there are a lot of them – are on the left side, while the G6900′s control panel is on the right.

Considering all these inputs, don’t forget, there’s also a wireless wifi module option for the G6900WU, and the ability to use a USB key to quickly set up communication with computers.

Let’s see what’s on that Control Panel.

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Control Panel

The G6900WU Control Panel is located on the back of the projector, to the right of all the inputs. It is a pretty standard affair.  (I should mention that the usual indicator lights that on most projectors are found by the panel, are in this case on the top front of the projector.)

Starting from the left is the power switch – once for on, twice to turn off.  Next over is the Source Search button, and then comes the four arrows in a diamond layout for navigation.  The Enter button is in the middle of the arrow keys, while the Menu, and the Escape buttons are respectively to the right and left of the up arrow.

Each of the arrows has another function when you are not in the menu system.  Left arrow brings up the Control Panel lock menu, where you can lock out use of the panel.  The up arrow brings up the keystone correction menu, while the right arrow doubles as the A/V Mute.  The down arrow brings up the first of 9 test patterns built into the projector (a black and white checkerboard pattern).

I can see where having the control panel right next to the connectors for all the inputs and networking would be a real advantage during installation, and especially, though, for rental and staging.

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Back Input and Connector Panel

Let’s start top left (as usual).  First is a small mini-USB type connector for the service port.  Then comes the SDI port (a BNC connector). SDI let’s you run live Hi-def video, say from a pro TV camera, or other device, directly into the projector where it can be displayed.

Two RJ45 connectors (Ethernet connectors) are next, the first is the LAN connector for your local area network, the other is the HDBaseT connector, which can carry HDMI with audio, plus command and control, and networking information to distances of over 200 feet.  In other words, this Epson is built to handle hi-def sources even at great lengths.

HDMI comes next and the similar, but different connector for DisplayPort (more of a packet type interface – it works with data much the way the internet works).  Far to the right is the good old “stuff”, consisting of an S-Video connector (DIN), a composite Video (RCA jack), and two audio in jacks – left and right (white and red RCA jacks).

Now we’ll swing back to the second row of connectors, from the left you’ll find a standard analog computer input, with the traditional HD15 connector.  After a space, to the right are two stereo mini jacks for Audio in 1 and 2.

Below these, you’ll find five BNC connectors in a row for component video RGB with sync.

We’re almost done.

To the right of the Computer input is the traditional Monitor out (DB15), and below it, a DB9 RS232 serial port for command and control (old school).  That’s almost it.  a bit to the right of that Monitor Out is a mini-jack for the stereo audio output.   The G6900WU projector may not have speakers but it will allow control and routing of audio to that output, to be fed to an external sound system.

As you can see, the G6900WU is extremely well endowed.  The G Series line-up, overall, is similar, with some having one or two less inputs.  The G6900WU, however, is the only one that supports SDI, or I should say:  HD-SDI.

The Epson projector is obviously well equipped even for a larger venue projector, and especially so for one so small and light (relative to 6000 lumens).  If I had one thing, however, that I would immediately change, it would be to have a second standard HDMI input jack.  That would be more convenient in some installations.  Of course there are other ways to get a second HDMI signal into this projector.

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