InFocus Play Big SP777 Home Theater Projector Review
InFocus provides a 2 years parts and labor warranty.
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The 777 is sold by a limited number of premium InFocus dealers that are certified fo sell their entire ScreenPlay line. There are a large number of InFocus dealers that are not authorized for the 777. In fact InFocus approves each 777 sale individually. That would indicate that InFocus is prepared to make sure you are satisfied.
Projector Reviews: Summary, Pros, Cons
This is one fine piece of machinery. More than anything, it produces a truly high end, first class image, from DVD and HD sources. The 777 offers very dark, neutral “blacks”, excellent contrast, and low noise, resulting in a great picture, yet, at the same time, it is more forgiving of DVD’s with poor production values, than the competition we’ve tested.
As a 3 chip DLP projector, it probably has to be considered the low pricing leader, at just under $15,000 retail. Also keep in mind, that it is a brighter home theater projector, claiming 2000 lumens.
Consider, it is only hundreds more than the Marantz VP12S4, certainly one of the finest single chip Darkchip3 DLP projectors, yet for the small difference, you get a 3 chip solution, with all its advantages (no color wheel, rainbow effect issues…) and a brighter solution as well.
On the higher side, there is strong competition from SIM2. We recently reviewed their $19,990 C3X. The C3X Lite, on the other hand, is $15,990. However the InFocus, for a thousand dollars less, offers a proclaimed 2000 lumens, vs the “Lite’s” 1500 lumens. For the brighter SIM2 you are looking at $5000 more.
Let’s take a look at the Pros and Cons of the InFocus Screenplay 777:
- Really excellent overall image quality
- Very good “blacks” and excellent shadow detail
- Lens shift (more range than most)
- Wide selection of lenses (6 optional, plus standard lens) allows placement at almost any distance desired
- Very bright
- Reasonably quiet
- Physically attractive
- Two year warranty
- Dual screen triggers
- Shelf mounting is a definite option
- Price/performance: Aggressively priced for a 3 chip DLP projector
- Lens z oom, focus, and lens shift are all powered
- Physically a large projector
- Lamp life
- No low power mode
- A 2nd digital input (DVI/HDMI) would be nice
- Needs a good calibration to fully maximize its potential and your enjoyment
- Manual a thin user manual, and a fairly thin installers manual, provides limited info about various options
- Limited (3) saveable user settings
- Remote control
- Noise levels
- Menus – not pretty, but logically laid out and easy to navigate
The InFocus 777 will provide a first class home theater image that should blow you and your friends away – even the most critical ones. Overall, it handles just about everything beautifully. If you throw a really spectacularly dynamic sequence at it, such as the space collisions in Starship Troopers, its image can be surpassed, by the SIM2 (and possibly others) which by comparison, will provide an image that is even more spectacular. Consider though, at the same time, the SIM2 is more critical of source material. The SIM2 may be the projector with ultimately the better of the two in overall picture quality, but the InFocus may be the easier to enjoy on most content. Taking that and some other factors into consideration, I would have to pick the SIM2 if the C3X was the same price, as the 777, but considering the $5000 difference, the InFocus is the slightly better value.
Please note, when I write above, about more forgiving, or slightly better overall image quality. We are talking about some very small differences, relative to comparing the 777 to projectors half the price. My own BenQ 8720 truly pales by comparison. The differences between the InFocus and the SIM2 are negligible, relative to comparing either with my projector, an extremely good single chip DLP projector.
Try to keep it in perspective that this is about as good as home theater gets. (Yes, uncle milti – there is more esoteric gear out there, and, yes, you can spend a hundred grand on projector and processing, if you are truly that rich and fanatical.) When I say about as good as it gets, I’m talking about for people with a healthy budget, looking for something that creates a better theater experience than running out to a good movie theater.
What the 777 can do, is provide a nearly flawless home theater image, faithfully reproducing what is on your DVD or HD source.
I think a car analogy is in order. This is your top of the line Lexus, or maybe a Mercedes. Easy to use, Easy to watch, and a first class ride. For performance and purists there are BMW’s, Ferraris, etc.but with the InFocus you are certainly traveling in style.
Last comments – for a great projector, with all its potential, do not skimp on cables, screens etc. And also sound. You don’t want to end up with a magnificent picture only to be let down by a second class surround sound system. You’ll want to choose your dealer wisely too! And don’t forget to have the InFocus 777 properly calibrated.
It’s hard to imagine anyone who wouldn’t be satisfied with this projector. I, certainly could learn to live with it. Time to break out the AMEX?
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