Posted on November 11, 2017 By Ron Jones
The main competition at this price point for some sort of 4K support are the pixel shifting 1080p projectors using 3LCD technology (or LCoS for somewhat more money) and pixel shifting DLP projectors from other manufacturers (such as the previously reviewed Optoma UHD65 – HERE). All of the DLP models are using the same micro-display chipset from Texas Instruments.
When moving to 4K/UHD there are 3 picture enhancements available from certain sources, including Ultra HD Blu-rays and from some of the streaming video services. From a moving to 4K standpoint, there’s one piece of the puzzle missing with the Acer V7850 and other current DLP models, and that relates to the ability to actually display a wide color gamut (WCG) – which simply provides richer, more intense colors than the ITU Rec. 709 standard we’ve enjoyed all these years for HDTV and standard HD Blu-ray movies. Just remember, almost all Blu-ray UHD movies support not only 4K resolution, and HDR, but also WCG (extended color space) based on the ITU Rec. BT2020 standard. However, the full color gamut allowed by the BT2020 standard it not actually being used, rather the more practical, obtainable DCI-P3 “subset”, as used in commercial cinemas, is generally what you will find on the current generation of Ultra HD Blu-rays.
Acer claims in in some of their literature for the V7850:
“The V7850 has a 2,200 lumens rating and boasts a RGBRGB color wheel, which helps produce a wider color gamut, and supports the Rec. 709 standard to reproduce original colors and tones true to the film director’s intentions. It also touts a contrast ratio up to a whopping 1,200,000:1 and is compatible with Rec. 2020 signals, the UHDTV standard.”
Most projectors that try to support Rec. 2020 come up way short, even for the more limited DCI-P3 color space. Later in this review we’ll discuss how well the V7850 actually performs, but it appears to be particularly challenging for lamp based DLP projectors, of which the Acer V7850 is one, to support a color gamut significally wider that Rec. 709..
One more thought before we get into more of an overview of the projector itself: Just keep in mind, that the Acer V7850’s native resolution of 2716×1528 is still one half of true 4K (either 3840×2160, or true DCI 4K which is 4096×2160, – note that the difference is in aspect ratio, rather than any real difference resolution). Pixel shifting helps, just as it helps the 1080p pixel shifters look sharper than standard 1080p projectors. Appreciate the Acer for the sharpness it delivers, which is most impressive. Don’t fall, however for the 4K UHD hype. Manufacturers tend to want to let readers “assume” it’s true 4K, and regularly use terms like 4K processing, 4K Enhancement, etc. In fact most brochures today of 4K UHD projectors proclaim 3840×2160 resolution, but typically fail to remind us that the size of their pixels is larger than true 4K pixels, and you just can’t get as sharp an image when the pixels are relatively large and are also overlapping the adjacent pixels. Roughly speaking, if a true 4K projector’s pixels were the size of a nickel, then this projector’s would be about the size of a quarter.
That’s marketing folks, skip the hype, instead concentrate on the fact that this is a $2500 projector with sharpness we’ve never seen so good without spending $5000 list price for the lowest cost Sony true 4K model (the Sony VPL-VW285ES, reviewed HERE). As to the rest of the feature set, picture quality and performance – we’ll get to that.
The big feature of the V7850 is the higher pixel density DLP chip, that meets the 4K UHD standard by displaying 8M pixels, through the use of using pixel shifting. After that, very important is the support for HDR – High Dynamic Range, the rest of this Acer is a pretty typical home projector. Lens functions are manual zoom and focus. Plus, there’s vertical lens shift as well. It’s a modest amount, allowing only 15%, of screen height, vertical adjustment but it does provide for placement flexibility.
I mentioned the lower cost Acer model H7850 above. Let’s take a moment to define the difference between the two, (besides the lower $1999 price of the H7850). These are very similar projectors with basically the same feature set, the primary difference is the color filter wheel. Whereas the V7850 uses an RGBRGB color wheel, the H7850 uses a different configuration with a large clear slice. This is typical of single chip DLP home entertainment projectors vs. DLP home theater ones.
That clear slice provides a lot more white lumens, (but less for color ones), with the idea being that as a home entertainment projector, the H7850 needs the extra lumens, to overcome the room’s ambient lighting, at the expense of providing less color saturation. So the V7850 reviewed here is expected to offer more accurate colors while the H7850 can potentially provide a brighter image, at least for whites and lighter color shades.
© 2017 Projector Reviews