JVC DLA-RS25 Projector Review

JVC DLA-RS25 Projector: Pros, Cons, and Typical Capabilities

JVC DLA-RS25 Projector: Pros

  • The best black levels of any projector we have worked with, at any price. (Just slightly better than the RS20 it replaces, which was the former black level champ)
  • Very good color accuracy post calibration in “best” mode, and almost as good right “out of the box”…
  • “Almost Perfect” right out of the box: We found their THX mode to be excellent
  • Significantly brighter than average in “best” modes with mid 700 lumen output – not the very brightest out there, but plenty of lumens for larger screens, and brighter than most
  • Manual iris allows you to dial down brightness for smaller screen, which in turn increases contrast and black level performance slightly
  • Very good shadow detail performance
  • The combination of extremely good color accuracy, and black levels makes for the best overall picture quality of any projector we have reviewed
  • Two HDMI 1.3b inputs, full support for 24 fps, Deep Color, CEC, etc.
  • Outputs 24 frame per second sources at 96 fps
  • Three User definable image modes (User 1,2,3) in addition to being able to modify all the predefined modes, except THX (which has limited adjustments available). Plus, three Custom modes each, for Gamma, Color Temp, and CMS
  • Good layout on the remote control, and a good backlight with easily readable buttons
  • Excellent placement flexibility due to 2:1 zoom and lens shift
  • Focus, Zoom and Lens shift all motorized (see special features, first page for fringe benefits)
  • Very good menus
  • The price is reasonable for the outstanding performance! We’re talking premium picture quality!

JVC DLA-RS25 Projector: Cons

  • Slightly below average brightness in “brightest” modes with just over 850 lumens – we consider average, about 1000 in “brightest” mode
  • CFI – Creative frame interpolation needs to be improved, ok for sports, though
  • A third HDMI input would be nice
  • Slight (but acceptable) pixel misalignment, only partially corrected on this unit by the pixel adjustment feature
  • Key action on remote control is a bit iffy, range somewhat limited, you need to find the right angle when pointing for a bounce off of your screen
  • Documentation is typically weak in terms of explaining a number of settings features and modes. Examples include no chart for lens shift offsets, no details about interaction of the CMS settings, no explanations of the different look and feel of the four preset gammas…

JVC DLA-RS25 Projector: Typical Capabilities

  • Selection of inputs
  • Just average lamp life – 2000 hours in High lamp power, “Norma” (that would be JVC’s way of saying “low power”) lamp mode can increase lamp life”
  • Average sharpness for a 1080p projector – this can be improved slightly, with the sharpness and detail enhancement controls, without creating noticeable sharpening artifacts They can make a nice difference if not pushed too far.
  • Documentation (I’m still waiting to see a projector that really does provide good explanations of all the menu functions).

My last thoughts: Well, I’d rather have the RS25 over my RS20, if for no other reason, for the CFI for sports viewing. I’m even more intrigued, by JVC’s DLA-RS35. The RS35 is essentially an RS25 with hand picked components and a higher level of quality control. That means the best of the optics, light engines, etc.

How much of a difference can that make? I’m not sure yet, but my contacts at JVC tell me you really can see a real difference. I suspect that means there probably won’t be an RS25 projector in my theater, but, if JVC can prove to me that the RS35 really will look better, I may have one of those under my tree for the holidays. -art

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