There are 4K projectors, and then there are 4K Projectors – to paraphrase James Bond in Casino Royale. Sony’s VPL-VW285ES is the first true 4K projector under $5000That is, some projectors have true 4K resolution while others can accept 4K content, and use techniques to get improved results out of lower resolution projectorsThis section’s list of projectors includes both types, that is projectors with true 4K panels/chips therefore have either 4096×2160 or 3840×2160 resolution without any of that “pixel shifting”, and those accepting 4K content that are 1080p projectors, or 4K UHD projectors (which aren’t true 4K as I keep saying) Both put content on the screen that is higher resolution than 2K or 1080p. That means we are including projectors using pixel shifting, such as currently shipping JVC home theater projectors and Epson home theater, and business projectors. And including the new class of projectors using the “above 2K” DLP chip, like those from Optoma and BenQ, referred to as 4K UHD – 2716x1528x2 resolution, but those use a 4.3 megapixel chip with pixel shifting, that meets the 4K UHD standard.True 4K is at least 8.3 megapixels with no pixel overlapping. These higher res 4K UHD chips are 4.15 megapixels but fire twice with the pixel shifting to deliver 8 megapixels. The newer lower res ones are 1920×1080 x 4 – Same native resolution as a 1080p projector but they pixel shift to hit the screen a total of 4 times to achieve the same 8.15 megapixels despite the much larger pixels. We reviewers would have been a lot happier, and consumers less confused if they weren’t called 4K UHD, but merely UHD projectors, as it’s definitely a bit misleading. By comparison, pixel shifting 1080p projectors like the JVCs and Epsons only deliver 4.15 megapixels of data not 8.3, when pixel shifting, so they are 1920x1080x2 resolution.I previewed one in the 4K UHD DLP prototype projectors in the DLP suite at the CES show, while Optoma showed one on the show floor, and BenQ announced one. See my blog regarding the new chip.The era of 4K projectors is really just getting going. At the moment there are still only a few true 4K projectors and a number of other ones that can accept and process 4K content.At this time (8/2018) there are four different classes – types of projectors claiming something of being 4K.True 4K Projectors! There are a few true 4K projectors, mostly Sonys, and many others which are lower native resolution, but use pixel shifting techniques, and there are already 2K (1080p) projectors using pixel shifting that can accept 4K content, including Epsons and JVCsAs of this time, only Sony is offering true 4K projectors for home (except for a $35,000 JVC.. while Sony and Canon and others have models shipping for business/education. Note, most of the native 4K projectors useLCoS technology, but recently Epson, NEC and others have launched commercial models that are native 4K projectors. When we talk native, or true 4K, we’re talking having smallest sized pixels thus can provide maximum resolution. And no overlapping pixels. That’s still the highest resolution way to go, even if the differences in perceived sharpness between native 4K projectors and pixel shifters that start out with larger, and fewer pixels, can seem just as sharp, if you don’t sit really close. 4K Projectors JVC DLA-RS3000 First Look Review – With 8K ResolutionA rather exciting evolution of home theater projectors was revealed at CEDIA 2018, held last month i…Read MoreOctober 9, 2018 LG HU80KA Review – A Laser Powered, Smart, Home Entertainment ProjectorThe LG HU80KA projector is one interesting home entertainment and home theater projector – but more…Read MoreSeptember 29, 2018 Optoma UHL55 First Look Review – Compact, 4K and Full of SmartsOptoma unveiled the UHL55 at CEDIA 2018 earlier this month. The projector follows in the footsteps o…Read MoreSeptember 27, 2018 JVC DLA-RS440U Review – A Serious, 4K Capable Home Theater ProjectorThe JVC DLA-RS440U is a home theater projector that I’ve long been waiting to review. This is its se…Read MoreAugust 20, 2018 Optoma UHD51A A Smart 4K UHD Home Theater Projector Review – With AlexaOptoma – with its brand new UHD51A 4K UHD projector, is one of the first projector manufacturers to…Read MoreJuly 29, 2018 BenQ TK800 4K UHD Home Entertainment Projector ReviewThis BenQ TK800 review has been a long time in the making. I got a look at a pre-production unit in…Read MoreJuly 9, 2018 The LG CineBeam HU80K – A 4K Laser Projector That Gets ItThis is a paid advertorial from LG featuring their new 4K laser projector, the LG HU80K. All Boxes C…Read MoreJune 29, 2018 Acer VL7860 4K UHD Laser Projector ReviewAcer’s VL7860 4K UHD Laser Projector using DLP technology is hardly the first 4K UHD projector we’ve…Read MoreJune 22, 2018 Viewsonic PX727-4K Review: An Affordable 4K UHD Home Theater ProjectorOne could almost call the Viewsonic PX727-4K projector a classic because it is most typical of the l…Read MoreJune 11, 2018 Optoma UHD50 and UHD51A – 4K Capable Projectors Well Under $2000Optoma has come out with two new projectors to add to their 4K UHD line, the Optoma UHD50 and UHD51A…Read MoreJune 8, 20184K Projectors REVIEWSImageReview JVC DLA-RS3000 First Look Review – With 8K ResolutionReview Date: October 9, 2018MSRP: $17,999Technology: D-ILA-3 LG HU80KA Review – A Laser Powered, Smart, Home Entertainment ProjectorReview Date: September 29, 2018MSRP: $2999 MSRP/$2698 Street priceTechnology: DLP Optoma UHL55 First Look Review – Compact, 4K and Full of SmartsReview Date: September 27, 2018MSRP: $2,999Technology: DLP with LED light source JVC DLA-RS440U Review – A Serious, 4K Capable Home Theater ProjectorReview Date: August 20, 2018MSRP: $3999Technology: LCOS 3 Panel Optoma UHD51A A Smart 4K UHD Home Theater Projector Review – With AlexaReview Date: July 29, 2018MSRP: $3199Technology: DLP BenQ TK800 4K UHD Home Entertainment Projector ReviewReview Date: July 9, 2018MSRP: $1499Technology: DLP The LG CineBeam HU80K – A 4K Laser Projector That Gets ItReview Date: June 29, 2018MSRP: $2999Technology: DLP Acer VL7860 4K UHD Laser Projector ReviewReview Date: June 22, 2018MSRP: $3999Technology: DLP Viewsonic PX727-4K Review: An Affordable 4K UHD Home Theater ProjectorReview Date: June 11, 2018MSRP: $1499Technology: DLP Optoma UHD50 and UHD51A – 4K Capable Projectors Well Under $2000Review Date: June 8, 2018MSRP: N/ATechnology: Sony VPL-VW385ES – True 4K Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: May 7, 2018MSRP: $7999Technology: SXRD (3) First Look Review of BenQ TK800 4K UHD Projector – Is Better For You Than The BenQ HT2550?Review Date: April 27, 2018MSRP: $1,499Technology: DLP BenQ HT2550 Projector Review – The Best 4K UHD Value Yet?Review Date: March 28, 2018MSRP: $1499Technology: DLP Dell S718QL – A 4K UHD, Ultra Short Throw, Laser Projector ReviewReview Date: March 13, 2018MSRP: $5999Technology: DLP (1) Vivitek HK2288 4K UHD Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: February 9, 2018MSRP: $1999.00Technology: DLP BenQ HT2550 – At $1499, The Most Affordable 4K UHD Projector Yet – First LookReview Date: January 10, 2018MSRP: N/ATechnology: Optoma UHZ65 4K Laser Projector ReviewReview Date: December 20, 2017MSRP: $4500Technology: DLP Optoma UHD60 Projector Review and Comparison to UHD65Review Date: December 12, 2017MSRP: $3799Technology: DLP Two Holiday Guides, Ten Great Home ProjectorsReview Date: November 28, 2017MSRP: N/ATechnology: 0 Acer V7850 4K UHD DLP Projector ReviewReview Date: November 11, 2017MSRP: $2499Technology: DLP Sony VPL-VW285ES 4K Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: October 26, 2017MSRP: $4999Technology: SXRD (3) BenQ HT9050 Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: October 23, 2017MSRP: $8995Technology: DLP with LED light source Casio XJ-L8300HN 4K UHD Business/Education Projector ReviewReview Date: October 19, 2017MSRP: $11,999Technology: DLP The Astonishing Epson Pro Cinema 4040 Home Theater Projector – ReviewReview Date: March 16, 2017MSRP: $2699Technology: 3LCD Sony VPL-VW5000ES Home Theater/Commercial Projector ReviewReview Date: January 29, 2017MSRP: $60,000Technology: SXRD (3) Sony VPL-VW365ES 4K Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: November 26, 2016MSRP: $9999Technology: SXRD (3) Epson Home Cinema 5040UB, Pro Cinema 6040UB Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: August 11, 2016MSRP: $2699Technology: 3LCD Epson Pro G7905U Large Venue Projector ReviewReview Date: August 1, 2016MSRP: $6499Technology: 3LCD Epson Powerlite Pro L1500, L1505 Laser Projector ReviewReview Date: July 8, 2016MSRP: $21999Technology: 3LCD JVC DLA-RS600U, X950R Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: January 25, 2016MSRP: $9995Technology: D-ILA-3 Sony VPL-VW665ES 4K Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: December 18, 2015MSRP: $14999Technology: SXRD (3) Epson LS10000 vs JVC DLA-RS6710 – Two Awesome HT ProjectorsReview Date: September 9, 2015MSRP: N/ATechnology: 0 JVC DLA-RS6710U, RS67U, X900R, 4K Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: April 22, 2015MSRP: $12495Technology: D-ILA Sony VPL-VW350ES Home Theater Projector ReviewReview Date: February 17, 2015MSRP: $9999Technology: SXRD (3) Epson Pro Cinema LS10000 Projector Review: UpdateReview Date: February 2, 2015MSRP: N/ATechnology: 0 Sony VPL-VW1100ES 4K Projector – A ReviewReview Date: November 22, 2014MSRP: $27999Technology: SXRD (3) Epson Pro Cinema LS10000 Laser Home Theater Projector – ReviewReview Date: September 9, 2014MSRP: $7999Technology: 3LCD on Quartz (LCoQ) Sony VPL-VW600ES 4K Home Theater ProjectorReview Date: March 4, 2014MSRP: $14999Technology: LCOS 3 PanelAbout 4K ProjectorsSony’s flagship 4K Laser projector: The VPL-VW50002K Pixel shifting projectors using 1080p or other 2 megapixel devices (panels/chips). The pixel structure is far larger – that is, each pixel is 4X the size of a true 4K. The each pixel fires twice, after shifting diagonally by half a pixel, so it can resolve a bit more detail from 4K content that without pixel shifting, but due to the pixel size, I don’t see them as true 4K devices. They can market it that way, but with 4K content if you have fine lines in your image – big difference.Those pixel shifting projectors’ claim to “4K space” is in their ability to accept 4K content, not their ability to fully resolve it.3K Pixel Shifting Projectors: Next – this third class is higher resolution than the “2K pixel shifters”. I’m talking about those using TI’s new 4 megapixel DLP chip. Read that carefully – we’re talking 4 megapixels, not 4K resolution. 4K resolution is 8 megapixels (3840×2160 or similar). The resolution is I don’t have the spec yet – which works out to really being a 3K projector.TI’s new chip will have pixel shifting capabilities so that will place their new projectors that use it, almost exactly half way between the 2K pixel shifters, and the true 4K projectors when it comes to resolution.The thing is that the UHD 4K standard counts the TI chip as being 4K. The argument is based on addressability, though not resolution. Since the chip has 4 million pixels, and each one fires once, then shifts and fires again, with possibly different data, that’s 8 million addressable, which is the same number has having a true 4K chip with each pixel firing only once.OK, I get it, but the pixels are still twice the size, and they are overlapping, that means they just can’t resolve near as much detailFinally the 4th type of “4K” projector doesn’t exist yet. Basically those will be some additional projectors using 1080p or WUXGA chip sets (but no pixel shifting), but add the ability to take in 4K content, deal with it and project it best it can, just like 720p projectors can accept 1080p content.SaveSaveSaveSaveSave4K Projector PricingAs of January of 2016, there are few 4K projectors shipping. The least expensive on the home theater side, has a list price of $9999, the most expensive (short of a true commercial movie theater projector) is $60,000On the commercial/education/business side, prices are even higher to start. For example Canon’s only 4K projector is $54,990. Sony’s got a few models so prices come down into the $20K range. Of course over the next couple of years we should see far more 4K projectors shipping, and that will drive prices down considerably.“Pixel shifting 4K projectors” for the home market start at $4000 for the least expensive JVC and $8K for the Epson LS10000 laser projector.No pricing at the time of this writing for the first of those 4 Megapixel projectors, the first to ship is likely to be an Optoma, which is expected to ship Q1 2016. ConclusionPerhaps the most important message was the first one. If you need the absolute best resolution, you are talking about a true 4K projector – one with about 8 million separate pixels, that will hit your screen with light without any overlap.There will be plenty of 1080p and WUXGA resolution projectors coming that will be able to accept 4K content, but no matter what the image processing, it all comes down to the most important thing being relative pixel size. A 2K (1080p, etc.) pixel is still huge by comparison, and a 3K DLP chip is still using pixels that are 2X that of a true 4K projector.There is need for 4K. For home, with a true 4K projector you can finally sit close enough to a screen to get really immersed and still have a razor sharp image. For other uses, the resolution aids in presenting anything requiring great detail, renderings, engineering, satellite photos…4K Projectors – It’s about time!