Epson Home Cinema 710 HD Home Theater Projector Review

Home Cinema 710HD Lens Throw

The Home Cinema 710HD is graced with a basic zoom lens with a 1.2:1 zoom ratio. That gives you limited placement flexibility (actually typical of DLP home projectors rather than 3LCD) like the Home Cinema 710HD). Epson expects most owners will place this projector on a (low) table, such as a coffee table, though some will ceiling mount.

To fill a 100″ diagonal 16:9 screen the front of the projector can be placed as close as 10 feet 10 inches or as far back as 13 feet. These numbers are taken directly from the Home Cinema 710HD’s user manual.

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It should be noted, that the Home Cinema 710HD’s LCD panels project a 1280×800 image, not the standard 1280×720 which is 720p. It is the only stand alone 3LCD projector I am aware of, that uses the 16:10 1280×800.

So that you understand, 1280×800 is referred to as WXGA (not 720p), and is the standard for most widescreen laptop computers. This goes back to the Home Cinema 710HD’s roots as a crossover projector, sharing the same LCD panels as the virtually identical Epson Powerlite W7 projector, which is marketed as a business and education projector.

All considered, the Home Cinema 710HD is a “crossover” projector, one suitable for typical business presentations but one with sufficient image quality to double as an entry level home projector as well.

Those of you buying a home screen for the Epson should understand that there will be just a bit of overshoot above and below the screen, due to the extra 80 pixels of vertical height. That means you will have (for a 100″ screen) a little less than 2.5 inches of letterboxing that is “off the screen”. Most or all of that would hit the black border of the screen frame, depending on the screen. The overshoot will be the “blackest black” – in reality dark gray light. It is the same dark gray as the letterboxing you would have above and below a typical movie (2.35:1) when shown on a standard 16:9 screen. OK, I got carried away. It really shouldn’t be a concern, and there are, for those curious, a number of other low cost home theater projectors using 1280×800 chips, both LCD and DLP.

Home Cinema 710HD Lens Shift

The Home Cinema 710HD does not have lens shift. Adding lens shift would increase the price. If you are interested in an Epson projector with greater placement flexibility, there’s the Home Cinema 720, a projector for the more serious enthusiast, which is only a few hundred dollars more. Other 720p projectors with lens shift include the Panasonic PT-AX200U and the Sanyo PLV-Z60.

The projector has a small amount of offset. For that same 100″ diagonal 16:9 screen, the center of the projector’s lens would sit 2.7 inches below the bottom of the screen surface. Or, if you are ceiling mounting, the projector mounts inverted, and would have its lens 2.7 inches above the top of the screen surface. All these numbers are from the Epson manual.

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