JVC DLA-RS20 Projector Review
Audible noise While many find even the noisiest home theater projectors pose no problem for them, I do get a lot of comments from those who really insist upon a very quiet projector. Most of them simply don’t want to hear any fan noise when there’s a very quiet scene on the screen. This is compounded, particularly, if your projector is ceiling mounted, and almost directly above your head. Those shelf mounting up high, in back of their room, have the advantage of normally sitting closer to the screen, and that the shelf itself can absorb or deflect some of the sound, away from the viewer.
The JVC RS20, is quiet enough in its low lamp mode (labeled Normal), that virtually no one should have an issue with it. With the lamp on full power (High mode), the RS20 is about average. And that means some folks will take issue with the fan noise. Not many, I suspect, but some. To a large degree this is a personal thing, as some folks just don’t notice it. Many hardcore enthusiasts, though, in their search for perfection, find any flaw distracting, be it fan noise, the slightest color imbalance, so-so black level performance, etc.
I mention all of this because the RS20 will appeal strongly to the enthusiast. The good news is that, I do believe the RS20, a little quieter than the older RS1 and RS2, will be found by most buyers, critical or not, to be satisfactory even in its High lamp mode. For those that aren’t, the choices are pretty slim. Mitsubishi and Panasonic projectors for example are extremely quiet, and affordable, but they aren’t in the same class, in terms of picture quality.
Fancy features Not a strength of the RS20. This JVC is more of a purist’s projector. As such, it doesn’t sport a dynamic iris. In fairness, it doesn’t need one, but geez, how black could the black levels get on dark scenes if it had one? It also isn’t capable of 120fps output from 60fps sources. It does however take 24 frame per second source material (primarily Blu-ray disc) and output at 96fps (4:4). On the other hand, it doesn’t do creative frame interpolation. Of course these are all brand new features in the home theater projector market. (I do like creative frame interpolation when viewing sports.) I suspect the next generation may offer some of these, but, I wouldn’t trade the RS20’s overall picture quality for any of these features. If I would, I’d be looking at Panasonic PT-AE3000 and Epson UB series projectors. Given a choice, I’ll take the JVC’s picture quality over another projector, not quite as good in that regard, but loaded with the fancy features. Most of us will.
The JVC DLA-RS20 and HD750 are not inexpensive. With a price tag (MSRP) currently over $7000, you are paying twice the price or more, compared to some really very fine projectors. This JVC is, however, a step up! In this case, though, if you want great picture quality, if it works in your environment for your types of viewing, and if the budget isn’t a deal breaker, I don’t think you can do better.
More simply stated: The JVC DLA-RS20 is pricey compared to the much of the competition, but is definitely worth the difference. Rather than talking about price/performance, let’s just say it is an excellent value proposition – you’ll get your money’s worth!
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