Mitsubishi ES-100 and EX-100 projector Review

I think it’s important to start with color. After, this is a DLP projector, and as many have learned, most non-home theater DLP projectors do not produce accurate color in “data mode”. When you switch them to video, most of them fix the color handling, but output less lumens. Most non-home theater DLP projectors can’t do a decent red (expect something more like a red wine color) and yellows tend to be mustardy and greenish.

Mitsubishi, through its CineRichColor menu setting, gives you excellent control of color. Scaled from 1 to 10, at 10, the projector is extremely bright (it had much brighter whites than the LCD powered Panasonic LB20u we put along side it). The reds and yellows however were off as described above, although better than most DLP projectors.

What I really liked though, is that you can easily fix the color. By the time you have adjusted the CineRichColor setting to 3 or 4 the colors should be acceptable to most who are concerned about color, and at 1, the reds and yellows, as seen in this image, are as good as found on LCD projectors. Now you aren’t getting as much brightness overall down around one, but then, you can choose the perfect blend of color accuracy and brightness for the presentation or meeting that you are doing, and it takes only a few seconds.

Mitsubishi ES-100 and EX-100 Projector Brightness

I was surprised by how bright the EX100 was. In fact in a side by side, it seemed as bright as the 2000 lumen LCD projector, when I had it in economy mode (1600 lumens). Very impressive brightness. The ES100 behaved the same way – bright

Projector Compression Technology

Compression technology is far more important on SVGA projectors (ES100) than XGA projectors (EX-100) since most people are now using computers that are XGA.

Compression technology lets your projector handle higher resolution sources, and reconfigure the data to fit the lower resolution screen. Of course, doing this degrades the image quality, most notably on small text. The variation from brand to brand on how well they can compress data is rather surprising, after all these years, but I can tell you that the Mitsubishi ES100 does an especially good job (I almost used extraordinary to describe it). Feeding the ES100 an XGA signal from my laptop, even 8 point type (two sizes below normal spreadsheet 10 point), is fully readable, if a little soft and uneven. The results looked better than any other projector I have reviewed in a long time, if not the best. I also fed the ES100 projector a typical Powerpoint slide, and with the larger type, standing 8 feet from a 100″ screen, compression was virtually undetectable – and I was looking for it. Excellent!

Officially the projector can handle a level above XGA (SXGA), and I found that it was able to lock onto, and display, not just SXGA, but several higher resolution settings, including the 1280×800 of my widescreen laptop. Bottom line, it can handle more high resolution sources than it claims.

Now that brings us to the EX-100. It had no trouble compressing sources up to UXGA (1600×1200), and like the ES-100 did a first class job with each resolution, including widescreen – which tends to be more challenging. Of course widescreen ends up displayed as 4:3 so round objects just became ovals – but that’s the way it has to be

Video Performance

Video performance was excellent. With a 2000:1 contrast ratio and DLP processing you get a smooth video image, and good blacks. While video color accuracy isn’t as perfected as on a dedicated home theater projector, it is very very good. Video is where DLP projectors normally have the advantage on LCD projectors

Crossover potential

Use either Mitsubishi projector for work, but don’t be afraid to bring them home.As a result of the video quality (especially with component video sources), this projector can very well double as a part time home theater projector, and would also work well in rooms with too much ambient light for traditional home theater projectors that mostly are rated 700 to 1100 lumens.

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