The Art of Home Theater Projectors

What's new – what's in the works, Mitsubishi HC3800 video clip, Epson etc.

Greetings all.

Just a heads up.  For the next roughly 3 days, I won’t be checking the blogs, and responding, sorry, but will try to catch up on the weekend.

In the meantime, I have just finished working on one of two videos.  The first one is now live on YouTube.

Basically it’s a 2+ minute teaser.  It’s a very short summary (humorous I hope) of our not long ago, Mitsubishi HC3800 review, a projector I really like a lot.  Click here:  The YouTube Mitsubishi HC3800 video summary of the full HC3800 projector review, is live.

Click on the link above, and check it out!

As you all know, my reviews are normally text and images.   This is not a separate review, just a summary and  highlights from the existing review.  One of the things we offer, as a service to the manufacturers that provide us product, is the paid option for us to create what I call a YouTube quality video Summary of the full review.

Yes, that means Mitsubishi paid to have me make this video.  No, the video draws no new conclusions, not expressed in the full review.

In final editing, is a longer video.  Whereas the first one is short – a teaser to get people to read the review, it also mentions a second video, that one is more in-depth.  It runs about 7 minutes and talks about more of the details – about brightness, color accuracy, placement flexibility, etc.  Of course it’s no match for the full length review, which would probably be long enough for a mini-series, when it comes to details, but, it’s also more than a teaser.  (Yes I congratulate the projector on its brightness, point out the limitations of its placement flexibility, etc.

That video should be live later on Friday of this week.  It will be posted on our site, accessible from banners, and from the “print” HC3800 review as well.   Most likely I will also have the longer one posted on YouTube, for people’s convenience.

Hey, anyone who wishes to comment on both, please do so.  I’m hoping to land a couple more contracts for creating these summaries, so the better I make them…  They are very time intensive, or, otherwise I just might have started doing them in general. Still, the online review is far, far more detailed than any of these could be.

Going Forward – what’s next:

The plan is simple.  I really need to finish up several of the recent reviews.  I believe at this time, I need competitive sections for several reviews, including the Panasonic PT-AE4000, the Sony HW15, JVC RS25, and Epson 8500UB/9500UB.

Each page is normally at least a full day’s work.   Because of the crunch I’m in, though, I figure to save a bunch of time by doing them at the same time.  This means I don’t separately write a Sony HW15 vs. the PT-AE4000 in the Sony review, and then a PT-AE4000 vs. HW15, written at a different time, for the Panasonic review.  When I put up the pages, you will see the same content for both projectors being compared, in their respective competitors page.

Other than that, I’ll be finding wrong and adding new images to the recent reviews, more proofing, some commentary, etc.  (Hey, I can’t read any of my review pages without wanting to make some changes.  Tis my nature.

If/when I catch up…   Here’s what’s in store next:

Although a lower priority, I’m in the midst of the Optoma HD8600 projector review.  it’s more expensive than many, but offers interchangeable lenses for those needing very short or very long throw solutions.  Not bad so far, but another projector with a dynamic iris that could use improvement.

I am hoping to get that one done, but, it’s possible that one of several others may bump it back another couple of weeks.

I now have a “first week in December” date from BenQ, for getting their W1000 $999 1080p projector for review.  I know a ton of you are waiting for that one.  I too, am dying to see where it fits in the DLP projector food chain.  Is it better/worse/similar to the HD20 $999, or is more a match, say, for the $1495 Mits HC3800.  With luck, we’ll all know within the next 3-4 weeks, well in time for last minute Xmas shopping.

Also coming in:  Mitsubishi HC6800.  And don’t forget, they still make 720p projectors so I’ve got to get to the low cost Epson 705HD, etc.  I’ve got limited budget people screaming for me to catch up on the few new 720p projectors.

Then there’s the backyard crowd.  They seem to want to know about Epson’s new all in one Moviemate 60.

Once in a while someone asks why I seem to pay more attention to Epson than any other brand?

As my regular’s know, Epson does get a healthy amount of attention here.  While I’ve answered that question  it in the past, why not again?

Here’s the scoop.  Epson gets more attention than any other brand, around here for these reasons:

1.  They are the number one player in projector home theater space.  They sell more, they have more models, they have more unique solutions, and, of course, they make the panels for almost every other LCD projector manufacturer.

Panasonic, may actually sell more home theater projectors in the US (it should be close), but, consider – Panasonic – this fall – 1 new projector, the PT-AE4000, 1080p.  Their 720p projector the PT-AX200, is essentially starting its 3rd year.  (Actually that includes the older PT-AX200U, but then, supposedly, the only changes have been the improvement in the gaming mode, the rest has stayed the same.

So, here’s Panasonic, with one new projector for me to review.  By comparsion – this is how Epson shaped up, this fall:

Epson Home Cinema 8500UB and Pro Cinema 9500UB
Epson Home Cinema 8100 and Pro Cinema 9100 (same thing)
Epson 705HD (720p Projector)  (btw, they launched another one earlier this year, so they have 3 in their lineup, including the Home Cinema 720 and 700.
Epson MovieMate 60

Epson Ensemble HD 8100
Epson Ensemble HD8500UB

Even counting the pairs as one (8500UB/9500UB), that’s 6 new solutions!!!   True, the new Ensemble versions use the same projectors, but they are truly unique solutions and certainly merit their full system reviews (including audio, screen, etc.)

By comparison, this year:

Panasonic: 1 new
Mitsubishi: 2 new (HC3800, HC6800)
Sanyo: No new
Optoma: 3 this year:  HD8200, 8600, HD20
BenQ: 2 this year:  W6000, W1000
Sony: 2 new:  HW15, VW85
JVC:  2 new:  RS15, RS25, and RS35 (Since the RS35 is a “special RS25, with higher performance, it too needs a review, but I’m not counting it the totals anymore than counting the Epson 8500UB and 9500UB as two separate reviews)

That covers most of the major manufacturers of projectors under $5000 (and some up to $10K).

My math says  that works out to:  12 new models combined this summer/fall, for Panasonic, Mits, Sanyo, Optoma, BenQ, Sony, and JVC.

And that’s vs. 7 for Epson.

And that folks is the story.  It hasn’t always been that bad – last year, Epson had about the same sized rollout, but larger – with 2 MovieMates.  But last year, Panasonic did have 2, Sanyo had 3  (right there that’s 5 total, compared to 1 total between them this year), and so on.   In other words, Epson is blanketing the market with projectors at every price (under $4K), and with a lot of variety, while most others are happy with product lines of 2 or 3 models, and a narrower focus.

News And Comments

  • NB

    If you can manage to get the head-to-heads done by next Wednesday (particularly the 8500UB vs the AE4000) I know a lot of us would appreciate it, since the black Friday deals (which can actually start as early as Wed) are coming up and it’s a good time to make a purchase this season.

    • http://www.projectorreviews.com/members/lisasonfeier/ Lisa Feierman

      That’s my first priority, working on it now. -a

  • Jeff Hurst

    What’s the easiest way to know when new projectors actually get released for sale? Manufacturer’s websites? Price search engine like Pricegrabber?

    • http://www.projectorreviews.com/members/lisasonfeier/ Lisa Feierman

      Hi Jeff, Well, we try, when we know, but since we don’t have the time to review every projector right about the time it ships, we don’t often know on a lot of models.

      Of what’s hot now, these are shipping:
      Optoma HD20
      Vivitek H1080FD
      BenQ W1000
      Mitsusbishi HC3800
      BenQ W6000
      Sony HW15

      Imminent:
      Epson 8100 (shipping I think)
      Epson 8500UB – Thanksgiving +/- a couple of days
      JVC RS15, RS25, RS35. Not sure, will have to double check but should all be imminent or already shipping

      BenQ’s LED projector $$$$$ – January
      Vivitek’s LED projector $$$$ – shipping
      InFocus SP8602 – mid-december

      and so on… Sites like pricegrabber may work if you know the model, and the manufacturer uses distribution not direct sales. With some companies, like Epson and Panasonic for example, new product shows up first in the handful of large direct dealers, then in weeks or a month or so, shows up in more dealers as the distributors feed product tot he smaller dealers. -art

  • Matthieu

    HA, it’s nice to see you for real (Oh well, on movie than)
    Man what a big screen do you have there aspecially with you standing beside it.
    Ambiant light and still this bright a picture.
    Fantastic.
    I think I’ll start looking at the video and than go read the review in the future.
    It’s like eating my icecream first before I start to the heavy but healty (read neccesary) meal.
    Your reviews keeps getting better and more impressive, each time.
    You have to use force to get me from this site.

    • http://www.projectorreviews.com/members/lisasonfeier/ Lisa Feierman

      Thanks! yes, my screen is 128″ Size does matter!!! (lumens too!) -art