Mitsubishi HC4000 Projector Review

We calibrate each home theater that is reviewed. The Mitsubishi HC4000, of course, is no exception. Working with a pre-production projector that is 2nd generation (based on the discontinued HC3800), rather than an all new unit, this HC4000 behaved admirably. No way really to tell it wasn’t full production from normal operation and viewing. For that same reason, unlike a first of a series projectors, this is a stable platform, and issues like color table changes should be well behind us.

Ours is a pretty standard calibration, there’s always more done by some of the “hi-end” calibrators. Our calibrations, including the Mitsubishi HC4000, are normally limited to a grayscale calibration, along with brightness, contrast, color saturation, etc. Only in very special circumstances will we calibrate the individual colors, in which case we discuss why.

Let’s take a look at the numbers:

Color Temp over IRE Range, (Cinema mode, Medium color temp, Brilliant Color off)
30 IRE 6503K
50 IRE 6472K
80 IRE 6522K
100 IRE 6649K

Mitsubishi HC4000 Color Temperature

Before we provide our settings, let’s see what we started out with: Pre calibration, these are the color temperatures over the grayscale range:

That’s as good as many projectors measure after calibration. Impressive!

Because the HC4000 doesn’t have presets that work the same as most other projectors – with different gammas and color temps, as separate controls, here are two more charts that should provide some clarity (or confusion). You can see how the Gamma affects different color temp settings, and vice versa:

Lumen Output and Color Temp for various Gamma modes at 100 IRE
Auto 567 @ 6673
Sports 607 @ 6726
Video 584 @ 6763
Cinema 569 @ 6649
Effect of Color Temp setting on lumen output (Sports mode)
Medium (default) 607
High Brightness 872
Cool 468
Warm 561

Below you’ll find final color temp measurements, post calibration.

Mitsubishi HC4000 Basic Settings

In addition to calibrating Red Green and Blue for a correct grayscale balance (6500K), there are a number of other settings that come into play. Typically Contrast and Brightness (white balance and black balance), need to be done first. Color saturation and gamma also need adjustment.

Settings for measurements (default values are in parenthesis):

Settings for measurements
Auto Sports Video Cinema
Contrast (0) 0 0 0 0
Brightness (0) 13 5 13 13
Color(0) 0 0 0 0
Tint (0) 0 0 0 0

Color Temp= Medium (default for Auto gamma)
Lamp Mode= Standard (unless noted otherwise)
Brilliant Color (BC) = Off (unless noted otherwise)
All other settings at default

Mitsubishi HC4000 Post Calibration Grayscale

Color Temp over IRE Range (Post calibration)
20 IRE 6625K
30 IRE 6534K
40 IRE 6569K
50 IRE 6589K
60 IRE 6575K
70 IRE 6537K
80 IRE 6558K
90 IRE 6527K
100 IRE 6482K

Cinema Gamma, Color Temp based on Medium, and Brilliant Color on:

Calibrated color temps, 20 – 100 IRE: The first set was from our calibration of the engineering sample. The one below it, from the full production HC4000. In other words, the second set is pretty much what you can expect. You will notice it is a tighter set of numbers than the original sample, and that’s why I’m showing both:

HC4000 Projector Grayscale Measurements:

NOTE: Greyscale is very flat full range. Delta E grayscale error averages 0.8, which is excellent performance (less than 3 is good).

RGB Settings

To get the color temp settings above, the following adjustments were made to Contrast and Brightness.

HC4000 Post Calibration settings:
AV Memory 1 with User 1 gamma on –1, Color on –5 (Red is oversaturated by default), Tint on 1, Lamp on Normal, Brilliant Color Off

RGB settings (default is 0)

Contrast
R= -11
G = 0
B= -8

Brightness
R= 0
G= -1
B= 0

Note that the Red and Blue contrast are lowered to bring green in balance.

Lumens at 100 IRE:            550 @ 6482
Average Gamma =              2.19  (about perfect, 2.2 is the target)

Brightest Modes:

Quick Cal of Sports mode:

As with the HC3800, you can’t use High Brightness as a starting point for User color temp, so I’m using medium (next brightest) with Brilliant Color on.  Also, like the HC3800, using Cinema mode with High Brightness provides a an alternate decent bright mode, coming in at 816 lumens
All other settings at default.  Stored on AV Memory 2.

HC4000 RGB settings (Brilliant Color off) (default is 0)

Contrast
R= 0
G = 0
B= -8

Brightness
R= 0
G= 0
B= 0

Lumens at 100 IRE (Brilliant Color off:   743 @ 6802
Estimated with Brilliant Color on: 980 lumens

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