Infocomm 2017 – Overview of New Projectors and Trends
Greetings from hot and humid Orlando, where this year the big trends are 4K UHD projectors, laser projectors, and ultra short throw ones, some are all three. There probably are more new projector models shown than the past two, or even three years combined. From just a handful of laser projectors six months ago, under $5000. There will soon be dozens, many dozens.
Infocomm was filled with business and education focused projectors with the 4K UHD chip, with even some starting, I believe, as low as $1500. These of course are all from the projector manufacturers that use DLP chips rather than 3LCD. Boy there are lots of those manufacturers. Most of those are names you know, such as Optoma, BenQ, Vivitek, Viewsonic, InFocus (although they didn’t have any but I believe there will be announcements from them later this year (nothing definitive).
In most cases, the magic starting number for manufacturers of laser projectors is 5000 lumens, but definitely saw some less powerful (and a bit less expensive.
On the high end of my travels – I don’t typically look at projectors over $25,000, Sony has a new model, maybe two. I will have to check my notes and press releases when I get home.
NEC and Panasonic both, I believe were showing use of an aspherical lens so that they can project inside a dome.
Epson had a large projection mapping display (look for a FaceTime Live video, I hope to shoot later today. What makes it interesting, is they are mapping in real time. the screen is mostly straight, but the couple feet are moving in and out, so they are basically adjusting to the changes in aspect, to keep the image looking the same.
Ricoh expanded their lineup nicely. We’re bringing in their newest ultra short throw projector for review, that’s a specialty of theirs.
Dell’s primary product of interest was their Ultra short throw 5000 laser 4K UHD projector I already blogged about. It looked really good, and has a great feature set. As to HDR, many companies including Dell, are not working with HDR content input, but taking standard content and “HDRing it, expanding its dynamic range. That makes sense, because in all but very high end content, (such as for museums and perhaps some scientific content, don’t expect much HDR in the business and education world anytime soon. (That’s very different from the home market where almost all Blu-ray UHD movies are in HDR.
Epson launched, seven, I believe, new big laser projectors, filling out their lineup between 6000 and 25000 lumens. Of note is their new L1755U, which at 15,000 lumens, will run on 120V, not needing 240v here in the US. They have the advantage that 3LCD projectors are normally more efficient, draw less power, than a similarly bright DLP. I’ll take Epson’s word on that, no one has time to look at the power consumption of every really bright projector. But, it makes sense.
Optoma was prolific in showing new models. mostly a mix of 4K UHD, combined with laser (and some of those USTs (ultra short throws).
Still don’t get the impression lamps are going away, especially with many lamp based projectors claiming 4000 and 5000 hour lamps at full power and up to 10,000. True, they dim faster, but, in the real word it’s extremely unlikely that most of today’s 20,000 hour lasers will get anywhere near that usage before being seriously obsolete.
Switching back to solid state, Casio had new models, all, naturally sporting their LED/Laser hybrid light engine now in it’s fifth or sixth generation I believe. Casio has been making affordable Lamp Free (their trademark) projectors for 7 years. And theirs start at under $500 while lasers finally will be starting around $2000 (for a WXGA).
I’ll have to double check this, I’m 90% certain NEC (if not, Panasonic), was showing the first 3LCD laser projector with a sealed light path and no need for a filter. OK, this wasn’t anything near an entry level projector, but I expect we’ll be seeing more of that in upcoming years.
One last thing, saw more projectors with the ability to split the screen into quadrants to show four sources at once. There’s nothing particularly new about that – we did a video of an Epson interactive projector, perhaps 3 years or so ago, demoing the ability. Epson and a couple of others showed a direct connection between projectors to place, perhaps two UST projectors side by side, letting the projectors themselves process the source material and stretch it across both. They can do a pair handling a 177″ diagonal screen, with basically “no muss, no fuss.” But then, this will certainly be a trend for large board and conference room sand university lecture halls and large labs. Especially for interactive projecting.
That’s all I have time for right now, back for day 3. This is mostly 3 hours or so of walking the show to see what I’ve missed. Then the flight home where I’ll be writing a bit more (but I’m pretty burned out – 16 meetings plus press conferences in the first 2 days.
OK, stay tuned.
PS Nikki is taking her review of the Optoma ZW300UST live on Monday, that’s the first of the 4K UHD ultra short throw laser projectors (one of many such reviews to come) we’ve reviewed! It’s impressive. Won a top award for value in our recent 2017-2018 Best Education Projector Report.
The North American Star League (NASL) recently hosted several gaming events using the power of Epson projectors, and we thought this might be a story our readers would be interested in.
NASL creates highly visible, organized and invigorating professional video game tournaments in North America. They have leveraged Epson projectors for their recent competitions, including:
BarCraft: World champion gamers from Europe, China, and Korea played at local bars and pubs around North America and the events were live broadcast into bars using the PowerLite 1925W projectors
Global Tournaments: At the Grand Finals Tournament in Toronto they used the Epson PowerLite Pro Z8455WU to show the tournament in an arena on a 16âx9â main screen and the Epson PowerLite Pro G6900WU for multiple side screens and viewing rooms
The Optoma HD131Xe home entertainment projector starts out as one of the least expensive 1080p resolution (Full HD) projectors on the market. Â It is a DLP projector, and well suited for serious gaming. Â Click for the full HD131Xe review.
This Optoma projector is very nicely sharp, and puts a very bright image up on the screen, that should make it easy to spot enemies in dark areas of the display, thanks to having a pretty good gamma.
But the first test of any projector intended for use by serious gamers, whether your choice of gamesÂ runs to the likes of Call Of Duty, or Â the latest Need For Speed, it’s input lag times that is the spec to look at.
Optoma HD131Xe input lag time: 17 ms That’s Fast!
50 ms lag times are about as high as the large majority of serious gamers Â will find acceptable. Â Under about 35, life is generally great, and best I can tell, anything under 20 might as well be considered almost perfect, from a player standpoint.
Back again with an Acer review.Â This time it is the H6510BD.Â Retailing at $799, this is an entry level projector that supports native 1080p and 3D.Â I’m usually pretty impressed with these entry level projectors.Â Read on to find out what I think about the Acer H6510BD
It’s been a while (sorry about that), I’ve been caught up in some projects recently at work.Â Â Art shipped me this projector a little while back and I was able to spend some time with it.Â Â The Acer H9500BD is a 1080p projector that sports features like frame interpolation and 3D. Â It is in the price range of the w1070 and may be a good alternative.Â Read on to find out how it compares!
This is an entry level 1080p projector from Optoma, but this thing wasÂ amazingly great for gaming. Virtually no lag, at least in comparison to the Epson 3020 I reviewed last. Keep in mind that during offline game play you will probably not notice the lag, unless you are playing a game like Guitar Hero. If you like to do a lot of online gaming then you will be at a disadvantage if your projector lags. I really loved the Epson for movies, but the Optoma does a great job with movies, and games. The color on the HD23 seemed to pop a bit more than the Epson 3020 with Street Fighter IV. I don’t know if it will translate into the pictures, but there was a noticeable difference. My nice Canon DSLR was on loan, so I only was able to get some shots of Street Fighter IV with it. I tried taking some shots with my Samsung S3, but no matter what phone you have, it’s not the same as using a DSLR…so I skipped on those pictures.
Just a quick lag test for the Optoma HD23. The Optoma is an entry level 1080p projector, sono special features such as CFI, etc.. This makes the lag testing fairly simple. I put it up against my Planar PX 2710MW 27″ monitor and it was almost on par with it. It ranged from 0ms to 20ms difference, so I would put that at about an average of 10ms difference from my LCD computer monitor. Which means this is a great option for gaming. Here are some pictures of the lag testing, please bear with the cell phone pictures.
Luckily, I was able to get my hands on the new BenQ w1070 (I don’t think it is even selling yet in the states). Â For those not familiar, it is an entry level DLP, 1080p projector with 3D capabilities! Â This projector will retail for ~$1100 and aÂ number of folks were hoping a review of this projector before the holidays, so I’m glad I was able to follow through. Â Â Hopefully, I can help a few prospective projector owners make an informed decision. Â Read on!
Art shipped me the ViewSonic Pro 9000 projector along side the BenQ w1070 so I was able to have both in house at the same time, which is always nice. Â The ViewSonic Pro9000 is a “Laser Hybrid LED” projector that seemed to peak the interest of some of you folks so I’m glad I was able to take a look. Â I was going to do a “shootout” between the BenQ W1070 and this projector but the Pro9000 retails for ~$2899, putting it in the mid level price range, so I decided to do separate reviews. Read on to find out how the ViewSonic Pro9000 holds up in the game room!
I have to start out with, this is not a good projector forÂ hardcore gamers…period. The lag was almost unbearable at times during online play. It was OK on offline play, but still not acceptable in my book if you are a competitive gamer. I loved this projector in all other aspects, but online gaming is its weakest link when playing FPS and fighting games. The lag test results are posted here. If you are looking for a projector with great color, brightness, shadow detail, that has 3D, wireless HDMI, but only plan to casually game on it…then this projector perfectly acceptable. If gaming is your first priority, then you may want to consider a DLP projector instead.
I am a fairly good Street Fighter IV player, and the lag definitely did me in. Here are a few pictures from the games I played, sorry if they are a bit crooked. I will work on my photography skills in the future…ha ha. The games looked beautiful needless to say, especially SFIV. I was lost in it’s beauty…that is until I actually started playing.
It’s been a while since I’ve had a projector of this caliber in my theater. Â It was great to get a chance to take a look at this year’s Epson flagship. Â No doubt, the Epson 5020e threw one of the most impressive images I’ve ever had on my screen. But how does this projector hold up in the game room? Â Read on to find out!
This round of testing is with all of the special features turned off.At 90-100ms lag based on comparison with my Planar LCD, the 3020e is a poor performer for gaming. All of the lag tests I have conducted are with the same monitor, so it will give you a fairly accurate idea of how good, or poor the projector performance is. As people have commented on my other lag tests, I have no CRT to test the lag on my monitor. If a projector is performing 100ms worse than my monitor, then it is safe to say it is a poor performer.
I only had the VPL-HW50ES for a short period of time, and I would have liked to spent more time with it, butÂ I thoroughly enjoyed every minute I did get to game on it. The color was amazing, the contrast was amazing, and the shadow detail and black levels were amazing. I would go as far as saying I like this projector more than my own Epson 8700UB. The lag test determined that it had about 50ms of lag, but after the review I realized the CFI feature was on when the lag test was done. It should yield much better results with it turned off. As always, here’s a link to Art’s full review.
While I had the projector I played Street Fighter IV on the PS3, Borderlands 2 on the PC, and Half-Life 2:Deathmatch on the PC. I did not notice any sort of lag while playing online, or off. I haven’t had my hands on one of the new Epson projectors, but based on what I have seen comparing the Epson 8700UB and this Sony, I would pick the Sony. Street Fighter IV looked amazing, and this would be a game you’d definitely notice if lag was an issue.
I’m back after a bit of a break, (recently moved to a new house), but now I’m settled, and I’ve got a budget gaming projector shootout between the Acer H5360 ($499) and the Epson 710HD ($599).Â Both of these projectors are 720P native resolution and represent a good value in their price range.Â The Acer is a DLP technology based projector and the Epson is 3LCD.Â Read on to find out the strengths and weaknesses of each and which projector I would choose.
Sony VPL-HW50ES Home Theater Projector Lag Test Results
October 18, 2012 - Scott Shrieves
I know this is a very expensive projector for most of us lowly gamers, butI am definitely not passing up having a crack at this beauty. Below are the lag times I experienced during the test. I am going to spend a few hours with it gaming, and hopefully get to watch Avengers in 3D on it. The gaming review of the Sony VPL-HW50ES should be up early next week! Until then, here’s a link to Art’s full review. See below for the lag test results, they are very acceptable:
I will keep this review brief, as it is supplemental to Art’s full review, available here. Keep in mind that this projector is tiny, and it is only 480p. It is very portable and easy to use. In the time I spent with the P4X I tried a little PC gaming, but mainly stuck with the Xbox 360 and PS3. I wouldn’t recommend this for PC gaming, because of the 480p resolution. It however does work great with the PS3 and 360. I mainlyÂ played Red Dead Redemption and Street Fighter IV on this little guy. As stated the lag (or lack of) was perfectly acceptable while gaming. The lag test results are available in my other P4X blog here.
I know this projector is geared mainly toward the traveling business person, and I think it would be best suited for that. It would also be well suited for gamers who are more concerned with portability, and resolution is secondary. I wanted to hook up the Wii on this projector, but unfortunately I did not have the proper adapter. Since the Wii is 480p, I am sure it would have looked amazing on the P4X. The color was great, and the brightness was perfectly fine in a room with a minimal light. Since the projector is rated at 80 lumens, I would not suggest anything larger than a 60 inch screen for gaming. If you have a completely light free room, then larger would be fine.
I just got my hands on this little guy, the AAXA P4X.Â I have only had the time to do the lag test, butÂ I plan on doing some gaming over the next couple of days.Â I know this projector is not geared toward gaming, but it could possibly be a fun multi-purpose travel projector.Â These are the results from the lag test.Â When testing lag I use the same length cable, and the source is coming out of the same computer/video card (Nvidia GeForce GTX 580).Â As you can see, the lag is minimal.Â It passes gaming performance in this aspect, but we’ll see how it does after a few hours of actual gaming.Â Art has a full review available here, minus the gaming aspect of course.Â See you guys in a few days, until then…happy gaming!
It’s been quite a while since my last review, but I was able to get my hands on the Acer H6500.Â It’s a portable, bright, entry level projector that supports native 1080p resolution, and the price makes it an appealing option for those wanting a 1080p proejctor on a budget.Â Â There are many strengths to this projector, but there are some weaknesses that should be considered before purchasing.Â Read on to find out how the Acer H6500 holds up in the game room and how it compares to the GT750.Â And be sure to read the conclusion!
Let me start with this, this is not a gaming projector by any means.Â This Pico is tiny, and I mean SUPER tiny.Â My wife, and daughter thought it was extremely “cute”.Â I guess that is the reason I was VERY disappointed with it.Â It does have HDMI, but it is a mini HDMI input and they didn’t bother to include an adapter.Â Not to mention I tried two separate adapters, with three different HDMI cables and my PS3 would not display on this projector…
I was able to sit down last week and test BenQ’s flagship projector, the W7000.Â At ~$2500, it is a direct competitor to the Epson 5010.Â I’m glad I was able to look at these two projectors soon enough after one another to make a proper comparison.Â The W7000 projector throws a super bright and extremely sharp image and also includes features like 3D and frame interpolation.Â Input lag has been a topic of concern with many of the newer projector models, read on to find out how this projector measures up in the game room!