Projector Reviews

Epson Home Cinema 3200 Home Theater Projector Review – Picture Quality 2

Epson Home Cinema 3200 Projector Review – Picture Quality 2: 4K SDR and 4K HDR, 1080P Material, HDTV and Sports.

4K SDR and 4K HDR

While most Blu-ray UHD content is available in HDR10, a lot of 4K streaming material is still only 4K SDR. The Home Cinema 3200 did a good job delivering a detailed 4K image.

While Pixel Shifting projectors like the Home Cinema 3200 do a very nice job emulating the original 4K content. If you do a side-by-side comparison with a true 4K projector, the resolution difference will be noticeable. The difference is easy to see with test patterns but not when watching most movie/TV content.

With the introduction of the Apple 4K TV, the amount of HDR streaming movie content has increased dramatically. 4K HDR content can deliver expanded color space with better highlight and shadow detail, but even the brightest HDR projectors can struggle to faithfully reproduce HDR.

The Home Cinema 3200, like most HDR projectors utilizes tone mapping which attempts to maintain bright highlight details and deliver decent full screen brightness. The Home Cinema 3200 has adjustments so you can manually change the projector’s HDR tone mapping to fit your taste.

When the Color Space is set to BT2020, or it is indicated in the HDR metadata, the Home Cinema 3200 can reproduce 112% of Rec709 or about 85% of DCI-P3. While the Home Cinema 3200 could not reproduce 100% of DCI-P3 like many higher-end projectors (which use color filters), HDR colors still looks rich and vibrant.

This is because the majority of the colors found in HDR material still reside in the Rec709 color space. Since the Home Cinema 3200 is a 3LCD projector, unlike most single chip projectors, it can reproduce an equal amount of color lumens as white lumens also results in higher color volume which make HDR content pleasing to the eye..

While the Epson Home Cinema 3200 delivered a good HDR picture, it can’t reproduce the extended color gamut or ultra-deep black levels of Epson’s higher-end models. If you plan on watching a lot of HDR or HLG it might be wise to step up to a model like the Epson Home Cinema 4010 and Pro Cinema 4050/5050UB due to the noticeable jump in HDR performance.

HDTV AND SPORTS

Most TV shows and live broadcasts will be in HD for at least several more years so good 4K upscaling is still critically important. The Epson’s upscaling was excellent. Whether I was watching 720P sports form ESPN or 1080p Blu-ray content, it looked very good. Most 4K movies do not have enough fine detail to make the difference between watching 4K SDR and HD noticeable. You can even fine tune the amount of detail displayed using one of the Image Preset modes or the Super resolution / Detail Enhancements settings.

The Home Cinema 3200 produced great overall brightness and managed 2,767 lumens in high lamp and at mid-zoom which allows for the daytime viewing of live sports or a TV show in a room with higher ambient light.

While many 4K UHD DLPs can produce much higher max brightness, their brightness advantage quickly disappears once those projectors are calibrated. In addition, single-chip DLP projectors that have relatively low color light output (compared to its white light output) don’t often produce bright rich colors, however the Home Cinema 3200 can deliver an equal amount of color and white lumens.

Overall Picture Quality

Above are a few more images from movies and TV shows. As noted elsewhere, there is some color shifting in these images, so they don’t fully represent how good the Home Cinema 3200 looks in person. It would have been nice to have deep blacks when watching dark scenes at night but overall I enjoyed watching Movies and TV shows on the Home Cinema 3200. Anyone looking for a 4K HDR compatible projector should definitely consider this projector.