Home Theater Projector Review:
InFocus IN82 DLP Projector:
Summary, Pros, Cons
InFocus may be a little late to the game, with the IN82, but they've built a good one. Physically, it's larger than most, especially considering it lacks lens shift, but a quality image comes out of the lens.
So, what sets the IN82 apart from the competition? First of all, as discussed earlier, it is exceptionally bright, with only the Optoma HD81-LV cranking out more lumens, and for that matter, not many more in "best" modes.
I'd just have to say, that second, is the overall picture quality. Very few people would not be thrilled with the IN82's picture.
The IN82 is overall, a really good, bright projector, and that combination means its going to work great for lots of folks, and is in itself enough to earn the IN82 our Hot Product Award. Being ISF certified, and offering the ISF Day/Night settings if you hire a calibrator, is just gravy.
After that, the IN82 is a very typical 1080p resolution DLP projector. It has a 1.2:1 zoom, the most common zoom range found on the DLP models. It has two digital inputs, typical, again.
Enough of that. The real question is what type of buyer will be best served by the IN82.
Start with those who are looking for larger projector screens. IN82 buyers can choose just about any size, say from 92" diagonal up to about 150" diagonal.
The IN82 will be tough to place in basements, and other rooms with low ceilings because of the lens offset, but other than that, it should work fine in almost any dedicated home theater. However, thanks to all those lumens, the IN82 should also be very popular in media rooms and family rooms.
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Stacking the IN82 up against the competition
The most direct competitors will be the JVC RS1 (and forthcoming RS2), and the Optoma HD81-LV. The JVC has the advantage in picture quality, most notably, black level performance, but can't match the brightness. If you don't need the extra lumens, you may well prefer the JVC.
The Optoma HD81-LV, is a little bit brighter, but is a bit of a mess, in terms of picture quality. It needs adjustment. Overall, though, these guys are close. I think the IN82 is definitely more film-like, whereas the InFocus has a more contrasty feel. A bit more depth at the expense of naturalness.
The Sony is along the lines of the JVC, but not very bright. It is, however, the least expensive of these.
The Sharp XV-Z20000, I would pick as the slightly better projector in picture quality, but can't begin to match the InFocus in lumens. The Sharp's inky blacks are its strength, against the IN82's horsepower.
The Mitsubishi HC6000 and the forthcoming Epson's and Sanyo's are all LCD projectors. The quality of the Mitsubishi is in the same strata as the IN82, but offers all that room placement flexibility, as do the others. It's simple, first you've got to figure out what will work, physically in your room. That way you don't have to spend energy considering a bunch of projectors that won't work for you.
InFocus IN82 projector, Pros, Cons, and Typical Capabilities
InFocus IN82 Projector: Pros
- One of the very brightest home theater projectors around
- Excellent overall picture quality
- Very good blacks
- Even better shadow detail, impressive
- Very good "out of the box" performance
- Out of the box color balance is good, better than many
- Very good documentation, with a fair amount of explanation
- Good menu system
- Sharp image
- Good remote, good backlight
- Two digital inputs (both HDMI 1.3)
- Physically attractive
- Easy to use
- Better than average price performance
- A slight bit quieter than most DLP projectors
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InFocus IN82 Projector: Cons
- A little bit noisy at full power, but still quieter than most of the DLP models
- Limited placement flexibility
- Significant lens offset, a problem for low ceiling rooms
Note, the image above was photographed with just enough ambient light in the room to read a newspaper, without straining, while the image is filling about 120" of my 128" screen.
InFocus IN82 Projector: Typical Capabilities
- Lamp Life
- Number and types of inputs
- Pixel Visibility
InFocus IN82 Summary:
The IN82 has a lot of appeal. If you want a bright projector that shows no major weaknesses, and projects a first class picture, this is on your short list.
None of the lower price projectors can claim to outperform the IN82, and while some competitively priced projectors can beat in in various areas, (they all have high image quality). The IN82's high quality image, however is also especially bright, giving it a real advantage!
Bottom line: The IN82 is a really good upper tier 1080p projector, and a bright one. I have to consider the IN82's price performance to be very good. No question you are getting your money's worth.
If you really don't need the brightness, there are a few other projectors you can consider that may be a better choice for you, but if you do, the IN82 will be hard to beat.