Optoma GT750 Projector - Image Quality
10/5/2011 - Art Feierman
Optoma GT750 Out of the Box Picture Quality
We didn't calibrate the GT750 at all, other than adjusting brightness, contrast, and in some cases reducing color saturation for a more pleasing image.
As it turns out, the GT750 with its limited color controls, might not calibrate a whole lot better than it performs right out of the box.
That is to say, that the GT750 looked pretty good, just as it comes. Although I found Brilliant Color, and or color saturation, to be set a bit too high for my taste, overall its color is at least as good as most of those little LCDTVs we have stashed in small rooms around the house.
In other words, the GT750 projector is designed for some typical consumers (you?). Optoma is targeting gamers, and also targeting the projector for the whole family. It's probably destined for use in one or more rooms, and probably not mounted.
Optoma GT750 Projector - Flesh Tones
Our projector did nice skin tones, sometimes exhibiting a bit too much yellow, but never objectionable for a family projector. Some projectors images come out better than others when I do my shoots. I'd say that the GT750 images don't look as good as they could, emphasizing the slight color shift.
Above and below, our usual suspects - Gandalf and Arwen, from Lord of the Rings, on Blu-ray.
Below are our three James Bond images from Casino Royale. Each has a different lighting scenario, the first - full sunlight, the second image; indoor fluorescent, and finally, filtered sunlight in the third image. And as one would expect, that causes each image of James Bond - Daniel Patrick - to have different looking skin tones. All look reasonably good!
To keep the brightness up, the color presets of the GT750, tend to have Brilliant Color cranked a bit. Bright is at the max setting of 10, but even Cinema was set to 6!
Consider these two images (taken with the GT720), varying by the amount of Brilliant Color. The second one has BC at 10. Start with the shades in the hand holding the iPhone (or even the fingertips. Don't look for huge differences, but ones that make a difference:
Brilliant Color = 10
Brilliant Color = 6
Note, the difference in the hand. Also, you see a good deal more detail in the boy's hair on the right, with the lower BC, due to more natural looking contrast. Colors are also a touch over the top with BC at 10.
That drop also resulted in a loss of about 1/3 of brightness. Getting down to 0 Brilliant Color costs almost 2/3 of brightness.
For my own viewing of movies I reduced BC to the 2-4 range, and would only use the 10 setting if I needed every last lumen.
More images we like for considering skin tones:
Optoma GT750 Black Levels & Shadow Detail
GT750 Black Level Performance
Rich, dark, inky blacks are the dream of home theater enthusiasts. To fully appreciate them, and to see them, you need a nicely darkened theater with dark surfaces.
Really impressive black level performance starts around $2000, and you won't get it with a projector capable of 3D, for another $1000 more.
And that's one reason why we tend to speak of some projectors as home theater, and some as home, or home entertainment projectors.
The GT750 is a great little home theater projector, but black levels have nothing to do with any greatnesses it exhibits.
In reality, the black levels are about as entry level as you can get. Blacks are dark grays, but not extremely dark.
The black level performance is typical of entry level DLP projectors. Even the most entry level DLP projectors have decent black level performance. By comparison, the few entry level 720p LCD projectors out there, can't do as well in this regard, at least not without a dynamic iris. Dynamic irises are rather rare on today's low cost 720p projectors.
In the image above, of Mordor, from Lord of the Rings, you have plenty of detail, but the image is lacking in the contrast in the darkest areas, that a projector with better black performance would provide.
Below is an image we like for looking at black levels. It's the starship image from The Fifth Element. All the images are a good bit overexposed. This allows you to get a better handle on the black levels. If the starship's brightness is about the same, from image to image, then the projector with the blackest blacks in the letterbox and stars background, is the one with the blacker black performance. (A lot of bright stars in its own right may just reflect gamma differences. It's the blacks you want to be watching).
As you compare the GT750 images to others, you can see that the starfield and the letterbox areas just aren't as black as other projectors (when the starships are of similar brightness).
Viewsonic Pro8200 projector:
Sony VPL-HW15 (LCoS projector under $3K)
Vivitek H1080FD ($899)
BenQ W6000, BenQ's next step up, with better black levels.
Shadow Detail Performance
Our comparison, once again turns to the night train scene from Bond's Casino Royale.
Mentioned in many reviews previously, it seems that projectors with relatively poor black level performance tend to do extremely well at shadow detail. This is, if for no other reason, because the blacks and near blacks are so bright - due to the weak black level abilities. Thus, with everything "lightened" based on the the only slightly darker than medium gray blacks, shadow detail is everywhere.
And, as already noted, the black levels of the GT750 are extremely entry level.
For your curiosity, and for general demonstration of blacks and shadow details, here's the GT750 taking on the usual other projectors, in the night train scene:
For whatever reasons, the GT750 did provide a bit better blacks than the GT720 did.
As I had mentioned elsewhere, if movies are your thing, and gaming is second, this image above is a good indicator of why the GT720 probably isn't the best projector for you. On the other hand, if you are playing World of Warcraft, and find the dark areas too dark on many projectors, they're probably just dandy, if a little lacking in dynamics, with the GT720 game projector.
BenQ W1200 :
Sony VPL-HW15 (last year's $3K Sony projector we're still working on its replacement, as we're publishing this GT750 review).
Black Level and Shadow Detail Performance: GT750 Projector - Bottom Line
The GT750 is typical of sub-$1000 projectors, in both areas. Its real weakness is the black levels, so this isn't for the movie enthusiast. Dark shadow detail, by comparison is really very good, better than many more expensive projectors (that have far better blacks).
Both are very secondary in terms of what's important in the overall performance of a gaming projector, or one for the family, in a family room, on a garage door (inside or out), or a spare bedroom.
Optoma GT750 - Overall Color & Picture Quality
This Optoma projector does everything one could expect from an under $800 projector. Well, almost. When you consider you get 3D, and a ton of brightness, that's a great start. Color in the case of the GT750 is pretty good, right out of the box.
Color, and overall picture, should be just dandy for the type of folks who have never adjusted the color on their LCDTVs, with the only real downside for this class of projector, being the black levels, which are not as good as some other entry level priced projectors, and none of them are very good.
All these images were taken at the same exposure to show relative brightess differences.
Much brighter, and pushed greens, as is so typical of the brightest mode on many projectors.
A mix of additional images to show off the Optoma GT750 projector's abilities:
And here are a few assorted, additional images, some of which can be found on other recent reviews:
Optoma GT720 Projector: Performance, HDTV and Sports
All the football images were taken with all the rear recessed lights on, and the rear window shutters partially/mostly open. While my room is very good at keeping the lights off of the screen, the window ambient light does lighten the visible blacks.
Optoma GT750 Projector: Bottom Line on HDTV and Sports
Simply stated, the GT750 is one of the brightest home projectors to visit us. It also has reasonable picture quality in its brightest mode. Oh, definitely not as accurate or pleasing in its best mode (which is still brighter than the average projector's best mode), but it can get the job done, when others can't. I missed having 1080 resolution a bit, but got by just fine one whole Sunday with DirecTV and football and fantasy football. No sweat. This is really a fine little projector for general TV viewing as well as sports.
The shutters on each of the windows are actually about halfway closed, but in the exposure are barely visible at all.
With well over 2000 lumens in its brightest mode, it can handle a respectable amount of ambient light and still do a fine job on generally bright content like sports. Just don't get carried away with the lighting.
3D brightness was respectable watching an assortment of digital content including the X-games, some college football, Revealing China and other "Discovery HD type content", concerts, and more. I did all my HDTV viewing at just under 100" diagonal.