Optoma HD8300 - Competitors
How does this Optoma HD8300 compare to other 1080p home theater projectors on the market?
Optoma HD8300 vs. Epson Pro Cinema 9700UB and Home 8700UB
The HD8300 has a great looking picture, but in almost all other ways, the Epson tends to provide a bit more performance for a price anywhere from moderately less to a lot less, depending on which Epson version.
The Epsons have a bit more placement flexibility, better black level performance, smoother iris action, longer lamp life and a lower price. All three projectors have great warranties, although the less expensive 8700UB comes with only two years warranty.
Optoma HD8300 vs. Sony VPL-VW90ES
This comparison isn't quite fair, as the more direct competition is the new Sony VPL-HW30ES, which we have not yet received for review. The HW30ES is, like the HD8300, 3D capable. It sells for about $1000 less.
The VPL-VW90ES may be Sony's flagship and over double the price, but it has similarities with the HD8300.
They are similar in brightness in "best" and "brightest" modes. They also have similar placement flexibility. The Sony is a 3 panel LCoS design, so due to the usual convergence issues, won't be quite as crisp looking. The Sony VPL-VW90ES projector has all kinds of neat features including panel alignment by zone. The Sony also has the better blacks (though not likely by any great amount). The Sony also offers a 2D to 3D mode that the Optoma lacks.
HD8300 vs. Sharp XV-Z17000
The Sharp XV-Z17000 was the first DLP 3D capable 1080p resolution projector to ship, early this year. It seems to sell for at least $500 less than the HD8300. The Sharp has very limited placement flexibility compared to the Optoma. The Optoma also sports a slightly sharper image due to some corner softness I saw in the Sharp. The Optoma calibrated better than the Sharp, in that we ended up with more accurate color with the HD8300. As both are DLP projectors, these two would be considered direct competitors. You'll have to decide if the HD8300 is worth the difference in price. It is the more elegant of the two. Both projectors handled all the different 3D sources I fed them, from 720p to 1080p, including all DirecTV 3D channels
Optoma HD8300 vs. Optoma HD8200
It really seems to be a case of:
Optoma HD8200 + 3D = Optoma HD8300
Close enough? If you don't care at all about having 3D (think carefully), consider an Optoma HD8200 instead.
Optoma HD8300 vs. Runco LS5
The Runco, in some ways, is what the HD8300 would like to grow up to become. They have similar feature sets, and both have excellent color. The difference is the LS5 is almost invisible. Its iris action is as good as I've seen (in terms of not noticing it), while the HD8300's is noticeable a little more often than I would like to see in a projector in this class.
Runco's CFI is as impressive as its iris action, in doing its job smoothly without being obvious.
Consider the HD8300 to be a lower cost alternative, that lacks the refinement of the LS-5.
Viewsonic Pro8200 vs. announced Epson Pro Cinema 6010 projector - and Home Cinema 5010
This is the one I'm waiting for. The Epson promises a whole lot more lumens - it claims 2400 compared to the HD8300's 1500 claimed. That's going to be a huge help with 3D, hopefully providing enough brightness to fill medium sized screens with properly bright images in 3D.
The Epsons - the replacements to the 8700UB/9700UB, will have the same black level performance as the older models, so should best the Optoma. The Epson should have better "out of the box" color, as it will have a THX calibrated mode.
All have great warranty programs
NEXT: Optoma HD8300 warranty