Sony VPL-HW50ES Home Theater Projector Review

Sony VPL-HW50ES Projector: Performance, HDTV and Sports

Most photos for this section were taken with back lighting on, and the rear window shutters partially open (hard to tell, but the shutters shown here are mostly closed, but still letting in significant light). Images of non-sports had the shutters closed almost all the way.

All the HDTV images were taken with the color mode set to Bright TV, rather than the calibrated User mode.

I’ve watched two full weeks of football with the Sony VPL-HW50ES, and it has not disappointed.  I have a dedicated theater, but can allow a fair amount of ambient light in, and still have a great, dynamic, roughly 100″ diagonal image.

That said, on Sunday’s I get the NFL package, which allows me to view up to 8 games simultaneously (an example of 4 at a time is on the summary page).  When doing this, I adjust the zoom to fill my 124″ wide screen to full width.  Sure, some of the top, and bottom of the image (mostly background) are off my screen, but the 8 games are all there on the screen, making each game roughly the same size as a 32″ diagonal LCDTV (actually a touch larger).

No problem in my room with friends over and back lights and some minor outside light, on that rather large screen.  Everyone comes here, because it really is rather dazzling – my own Sports Book is the way I think of it.  Many games at once.

I have had brighter projectors here, in the same environment.  The brightest of those have been two Epsons and last year’s PT-AE7000.  While both can provide more brightness for when you want some ambient light, none of those can match the color of this Sony in their brighter modes.  This Sony has the BEST brightest picture of the competition.

Sony VPL-HW50ES Projector: Bottom Line on HDTV and Sports

If your room is more family room, and don’t want to be doing the watch football in a cave, where you can barely see your buddies, figure you can handle up to about 110-120″ diagonal with limited controlled ambient light, and still have an image that looks fairly dynamic. Kill all the ambient, though, and 120″ diagonal should look downright great, with almost 1200 lumens in brightest mode.

OK, Projector Reviews fans.  The image above (from HDTV) was from the Live With Kelly show (shot in NYC).  What is interesting about that image is not the quality, but the presence of our company (vacation).  That one guy up front, clapping, is me, and to MY left, are my daughter Lisa, and wife Lori, both also employees of our company.

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