JVC DLA-X35 Projector Review

Sadly, this JVC projector lacks the native brightness to do really vibrant 3D on larger screens.  Sorry, but most should consider this JVC to be a projector fine for “fooling around” with 3D, but if you are really into 3D, the lack of more brightness is most likely going to dissapoint.  I was rarely satisfied with brightness over 100″ diagonal.  Acceptable at that size, to me, yes.  To some friends: Sstill “dim”.  No one yet, has commented on 3D viewing at around 100″ diagonal:.  “That’s pretty bright”.   Nor do I expect anyone to.

On the brighter side, though, 3D picture quality is noticeably improved over last year’s JVCs, which were pretty weak compared to the competition in terms of crosstalk, etc. This year 3D looks pretty good to me, in terms of a smooth image without obvious crosstalk issues.  The controls allow you to adjust 3D, including one which controls image brightness.  Expect more crosstalk in the brighter end of the range, but even at it’s default setting in the middle, the JVC looked real good watching Hugo, Spiderman and others.

DLA-X35 2D Brightness

This projector is supposedly (like the X55R) based on last year’s X30 (aka RS45). This years projector (the X55R, as well) measured a little less bright calibrated than last year’s JVC entry level. Note tht the X55R is rated 100 lumens less bright by JVC. That didn’t show up calibrated, but most of that does show up when we look at the JVC DLA-X35 compared to the X55R, in their brightest usable modes. When you need maximum lumens, and can set the lens to full wide angle the DLA-X35R can just hit 1000 lumens. We considered that “the old average”, but with 3D many projectors no offer much brighter “brightest” modes. The X35R’s brightness is still mostly that found in home theater projectors, not white projectors aimed at family and living rooms. But again, there is enough if those rooms aren’t too inhospitable.

When watching this projector, it’s easy to be most pleased. Overall, the JVC looks great. Good color, excellent blacks, dark shadow detail. As a 2D projector, one could say: “What’s not to like!”

The Very Bottom Line on the JVC DLA-X35 Home Theater projector:

As a 2D projector at its price point, it is a first class product, in terms of just about everything.  Oh it could be brighter, especially if you aren’t placing it in a well designed cave or theater.  I can quibble about how this JVC may be bested slightly at this or that ability by some of the competition, but it certainly has to be considered a top performer under $4000.  If your requirements for your next projector match up nicely with what the DLA-X35 projector offers, worry not about the others.  This should prove to be one of those decisions that’s going to prove easy to live with.

Still, this JVC is not without some weaknesses (what projectors are perfect?). Consider there are two such areas where the JVC will fall short of the best of the competition.  Brightness (here we go again), particularly for 3D, but also for 2D in “family room” type setups where a brighter “brightest” mode would be great for dealing with ambient light is one area, and ultimate color accuracy, calibrated, is the other.  That said, I can certainly live with the color quality Mike delivered with his calibration.

That’s it!   All that’s left is our usual summary of Pros and Cons – all previously covered within this projector review!

JVC DLA-X35 Projector: Pros

There sure are a lot of Pros!

  • Very respectable color post calibration
  • Great black level performance for the price (and no dynamic iris needed)
  • Good CFI – multiple modes
  • Slightly bove average brightness in “best” movie mode (703 lumens) for movie viewing
  • Very good dark shadow detail, expecially considering the dark blacks
  • 2D->3D works – try it with some of your 2D videos from your camcorder or…
  • Lens Memory – allows movie fans to go with a widescreen – such as 2.35:1 cinemascope
  • Zoom, Focus, Lens shift, are all motorized
  • Supports anamorphic lens in both 2D and 3D (not all the competition supports an anamorphic lens in 3D)
  • Wide variety of color presets
  • Better than average lamp life (4000/3000 hours)
  • Extensive gamma and custom gamma controls
  • Crosstalk is much improved (reduced) from last year
  • Optional RF glasses are rechargeable, have a great, 30 foot range from emitter
  • Control the projector with iPhone and Android Apps
  • Very good menu layout
  • Really excellent remote control
  • Rather good documentation, better than most
  • Excellent placement flexibility
  • Reasonably quiet projector – not too bad at full power, very quiet at low power
  • JVC claims their lamps hold brightness better than most (We do not get to play with projectors long enough to make such a determination)
  • Available in White or Black case, to better match your room.
  • Acceptable warranty – 2 years parts and labor, 1000 hours on lamp

JVC DLA-X35 Projector: Cons

  • Just below average in “brightest mode” (measured almost 1000 lumens)
  • Needs to be brighter for 3D – stick to smaller screens or high gain ones
  • Color, post calibration isn’t quite as accurate as competitors with better calibration controls, or JVC’s higher end projectors with more color controls
  • Lacks a standard analog computer input (there are work-arounds)
  • A 3rd HDMI input would be nice (always), but in this case, more so, since there is no standard analog computer input
  • Warranty 2 years parts and labor is average, but several competitors are offering 3 years
  • A bit noisy when running in full power, although not unusually so
  • 3D glasses and emitter ($99) are optional
  • 3D glasses are expensive compared to most others, at $179

JVC’s DLA-X35 is one fine projector.  Here at Projector Reviews, we tend to overanalyze most things, because we can compare projectors side by side.  Still, we try hard not to “lose sight of the forest, due to the trees.”  Take a JVC DLA-X35 projector home and enjoy it. As long as the JVC is bright enough for your room and screen size, it’s unlikely that any but a very few, would have a problem owning and enjoying it thoroughly.

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