Optoma HD73 Darkchip 3DLP Home Theater Projector
Optoma HD73 Pros
- Excellent overall image quality for its price
- Very good black levels and shadow detail
- Very good color “out of the box” requiring only minor adjustment to be excellent color overall
- All-in-all, an excellent projector for movie purists with moderate budgets
- Two year warranty
- Good menu layout
- Good remote layout
- Two digital inputs (one DVI, one HDMI)
- Cinema mode provides very “film-like” image quality
- Large amount of lens offset means that it won’t have to hang down too far on a pole for those with tall ceilings
- Watchability (new word) The HD73 is easy to watch – very transparent – you are focused on the movie, not the projector – as it should be.
- Excellent Price/Performance for those seeking image quality over all
Optoma HD73 Cons
- Definitely not bright – a projector for movie purists
- In brightest mode, perhaps the least bright projector around, not very suitable for use in rooms with modest ambient light
- Limited to about 100″ or 106″ maximum size screen with normal screens with gains of 1.3 or under. (Really high gain screens (1.8 to 2.5+ have very narrow viewing angles and corners roll off in terms of brightness
- Remote control has very limited range
- Very limited zoom lens (only 1.2:1)
- No lens shift
- Large amount of lens shift makes projector impractical for ceiling mounting in rooms with 8 foot ceilings or less.
- Minor build quality issues – adjusting zoom on lens puts projector out of focus. (minor detail)
Optoma HD73 Typical Capabilities
- User manual
- Zoom lens range (for low cost DLP projectors only)
- Size and weight for a low cost DLP projector
- Styling (not much to write home about – but then, what counts is picture quality)
- Lamp life
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HD73 Home Theater Projector – Summary
Ok, you get the idea, by now it should be pounded into your collective brains. The HD73 home theater projector wins our Hot Product Award, because there is a small but significant slice of projector buyers hell bent on finding an affordable projector with the best overall picture for movie watching, even if it means smaller screens, and less flexible projector placement.
The HD73 is a projector I can recommend to friends. Those that appreciate a rich image, with accurate colors, deep blacks and good shadow details will truly appreciate the HD73.
Others, looking for a brighter more balanced projector, able to handle more ambient light, or larger screens should look elsewhere.
The bottom line, once I realized the screen size limitations I found the Optoma HD73 a pleasure to watch. It definitely had those “film-like” qualities that makes you forget you are watching a projector, and instead lets you to enjoy the movie. I think Optoma will be extremely wise if they not only market the HD73, but keep the HD72 in the lineup. Between the two projectors they will find plenty of satified owners.
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