Epson to Launch Ultra Bright, Pro Cinema G6550WU Home Theater Projector:

As mentioned in other blogs I’m posting tonight, I got a sneak peak at Epson’s new fall home projector lineup, including the Pro Cinema G6550WU at Epson’s US headquarters a couple of weeks ago.The Pro Cinema G6550WU is the second of a new class of projectors for the home and also, I assume environments that require bright, and great picture quality.  Sports bars are one obvious example.
Epson Pro Cinema G6550WU claims 5200 lumens!
No cave or dedicated home theater for this Pro Cinema G6550WU projector with its 5200 claimed lumens.  Folks, for reference, in a fully darkened theater 750 lumens will fill a pretty large screen to theater brightness standards.  OK, sure, you put it in your theater if you have say at least a 150” diagonal screen.  But, it’s a room like my living room with sunlight pouring in that just begs for a projector like this Pro Cinema 6550WU.Here’s the skinny on this new class of three new projectors from Epson.  And don’t forget they have replacements coming for their current lineup of home theater projectors like the Home Cinema 5020UB, Pro Cinema 6020UB, etc.Priced well below the new flagship  Epson Pro Cinema G6900WU projector which is $7499,  a mere $5999 is the official price of the  Pro Cinema, still over twice as bright as any Epson home projector previously shipped.   The “entry level” projector in this G series lineup is the relatively low cost Pro Cinema 4855WU, claiming a still massive 4000 lumens.  There is a real picture quality difference though between the G6550WU and the G4855WU, which I have just learned, is only $3799, not the $4855 price previously mentioned due to a typo on Epson’s announcement sheets.Epson already has a G series of Pro commercial projectors.  Like those, these new Epson Home projectors also offer interchangeable lenses!The Epson Pro Cinema G6550WU and the G6900WU are more or less, the equivalent of Epson’s 5020UB and 6020UB projectors, but with extra features and power.  The key word here is picture quality, including black level performance.  The lower cost Pro Cinema won’t have features like CFI, nor match this Epson projector’s black level performance.Expect really impressive black level performance.  The Epson UB projectors are price performance leaders in this regard, so I would expect reasonably similar black levels.Besides less lumens than the flagship projector, perhaps the other major difference is the lack of support for HDBaseT, which allows running cabling for video, audio and control over CAT5/6 measuring more than 300 feet.I’ll provide details on the optional lenses in the full review.  Warranty is Epson’s usual impressive 3 year’s parts and labor with an express replacement program for all three years!Seeing a projector in action at Epson, of course isn’t the same as viewing them in my controlled  environments, so it’s hard to make any definitive statements as to picture quality relative to Epson’s current Home Cinema 5020UB or Pro Cinema 6020UB, but that of course is why we bring them in to look at!Updating my original post, none of these three G series Pro Cinema projectors support 3D.  They are just super bright 2D projectors.  Sort of too bad, afterall, with 5200 lumens under the hood, 3D would be “brilliant.”

 

Epson Pro Cinema G6550WU
Epson Pro Cinema G6550WU offers an impressive selection of connectors, and a rear control panel
Epson’s Pro Cinema G6550WU is likely the value proposition of these 3 new projectors.  It may miss a few features found on the G6900WU, but expect similar picture quality,  and almost 90% of the brightness.   On the other hand, the lower cost G4855WU, may be less expensive still, but offers neither the black level performance, nor features like CFI for smooth motion.People looking for best picture quality and killer lumens, will choose between this Pro Cinema G6550WU or the more expensive G6900WU.   I expect to review both.Perhaps Epson will loan me one of these for my living room.   This G6550 should do nicely!  -art 

News and Comments

  • Art, are these the correct model numbers??? The Pro Cinema G6550WU projector for example is listed on projectorcentral.com as having been in production and shipping since Jun 2013.

    Also are these actually home theater projectors? I see no mention online about the contrast of these projectors just that they’re really bright. On pjcentral the G6550WU is listed at only 5k:1 contrast. Now that may not be correct as the the pjcentral folks list it, as I previously mentioned, as being in production/shipping since June. Slightly confused….

    • Greetings Chris,

      Technically these are “home entertainment” projectors, rather than home theater: The Pro Cinema G4855WU, G6550WU, and G6900WU. First, if the crew at Projector Central have a June date listed, then they are wrong. There are, however, several G series projectors that are designed for business/commercial use. These, however, are more optimized for the home. I’ve been describing them multiple ways, but home entertainment projector, has typically meant sub $1000, which these obviously aren’t (starting at $3799 in the US).

      OK, contrast numbers were not published on the preliminary announcements we got on the three. As I indicated, though, they aren’t high, and 5,000:1 is definitely correct for at least one of them. Remember, these projectors are technically unacceptable in a dedicated home theater, unless you have perhaps a 250″ diagonal screen. For a typical 100″ diagonal screen, all you need is about 450 lumens to be as bright as a movie theater. 4000 lumens in a fully darkened room (or 5200 or 6000 lumens) would be blindingly bright. You would need lights on.. And if you have lights on, there goes your contrast.

      What these new projectors can do, however, is rival or beat the brightness of an LCD TV.

      In other words, these projectors are for living rooms, etc. where ambient light is present, and in significant amounts. When that happens, bye bye black levels regardless. Since there is a direct correlation between lower contrast and higher brightness, this makes sense. These are not for your dedicated theater unless your theater is, for example, all about lights on, and sports.