Optoma HD23 Home Theater Projector Review

A lot of processing goes on from the start of a photo shoot until you are viewing the Optoma HD23 images on your computer screen. As a result, these images are reasonable indications, but not accurate enough for truly comparing color, saturation and other aspects. Note: Selected images relating to shadow detail, and especially black level performance can be somewhat effective at demonstrating how the HD23 compares to other home projectors. Different computers, browsers, displays, graphics cards, and software affect how the image looks on your screen.

The HD23 images came out looking very good, although when viewed on my Macbook Pro screen, a slight bit oversaturated.

If you think these pictures look good, just wait until you take an HD23 home.

Optoma HD23 Projector: HDTV and Sports Viewing

To the right, are two images that should the back light sources. To get an idea of how bright, the recessed ceiling lights are 65 watt equivalent LEDs.  The other room has a giant skylight in it.  There is one shutter on the window to the right of the screen.  Blinds open about 1/3 of the way. Light on the back of the chairs is a good indication of the actual brightness.  The room still looks pretty dark, but for the screen, but that’s due to all flat black and dark navy blue surfaces – classic “cave”.

Almost any mode will do for sports viewing.  I’d skip Photo though unless you need high contrast to cut through ambient light, and use Cinema or Bright.  Save the less bright User or Reference modes for more critical viewing.

Sports (mostly football) looked really good. The overall image not only looks nice and sharp, but the colors are all pretty believable.  You might want to dial back the color saturation a little, unless you have some ambient light you are cutting through.

All the images below were taken using Cinema mode, non-football images were taken with about 1/2 to 2/3rds of the ambient light levels used for the football shots.  Room shots show how it looked for football images. 

Team uniforms looked good, as did the skin tones as you can see.  The default Cinema mode is a little cool – more blue – less red, but that should not be a problem at all. Even if a balanced 6500K is technically ideal, I’ve often felt 7000 – 7500K is easier for sports viewing.  It’s not surprising that most “Living Room” or similar brighter modes tend to be cool.

You might consider Photo mode if you are dealing with lots of ambient light. It’s definitely more contrasty.  In a good light controlled room, it’s going to be just a little over the top for HDTV viewing, but it may be a great choice under poorer circumstances.   Photo is also the coolest mode, where white measures in way up around 9000K.

Since all the modes are relatively similar in brightness, though, that’s hardly a concern.  Regarding the image below, not bad, but with the ambient light used (shown above) for the football images, this image just lacks the pop it would have if the lights were off and there was a bit less light from the windows.

As mentioned on the first page, the HD23 does not offer any creative frame interpolation (“smooth motion”).  That’s almost always a plus for sports viewing, but also a feature most of us could live happily even without it.

Optoma HD23 Projector: Bottom Line on HDTV Sports

Go for it.  It’s a good sharp picture with good color and 1100+ lumens for really good looking sports viewing.   Switching to some of my other favorite things, such as music videos, they too looked great.

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