Projector Reviews

Epson Home Cinema 5020 – Competitors 5

Epson Home Cinema 5020 UB vs. Epson Home Cinema 3020

What does the extra $1000 buy you (both come with 2 pair of 3D glasses), when comparing the Home Cinema 5020 with the Home Cinema 3020?

First and foremost, you are getting a higher performance projector in terms of picture quality. The HC5020’s black level performance is not only far superior, but it’s also better than anything near its price (above or below).  Even if you were to turn off the Epson HC5020UB’s dynamic iris and leave the dynamic iris on with the 3020, the 5020 would still produce the blacker blacks.  Of course that’s all expected since UB stands for Ultra Black.

The HC5020 UB lacks the more portable friendly Home Cinema 3020 projector’s pair of 10 watt speakers, but adds a good deal more placement flexibility thanks to variable lens shift and a zoom lens with more range. 2.1:1 vs. 1.6:1  Neither projector is particularly quiet in terms of audible noise. Both have the same excellent warranty. And same long lamp life.

The Home Cinema 5020 has dynamic features the HC3010 lacks. While the more expensive 5020 has full CFI for smooth motion, the Epson 3010 offers only the more basic FI – simple frame doubling. Both offer Super-Resolution this year.

If you aren’t a home theater fanatic, don’t demand those really dark blacks, and just want a great projector for the family, with good color and a good feature set, go with the Home Cinema 3020. If you have the budget, tend to be “into” the equipment – an enthusiast, then it’s rather easy to rationalize the extra expense.  As I basically said above, comparing the 5020 to the Sony: Both offer similar price/performance – with the HC5020 projector, you will be getting your money’s worth.  You only need to decide what it is about the 5020 that you want, that makes you spend the difference.