Projector Reviews

Epson PowerLite 2265U Projector Review – Picture Quality

Epson PowerLite 2265U Projector Review – Picture Quality:  Color Quality, Text and Graphics Readability, Video Quality, Sound Quality

Color Quality

The PowerLite 2265U has 6 available picture modes with the Dynamic mode being the brightest. Screen shot photos are above for each of these modes when operated with their factory default settings.  I must note that generally the projected images looked much better when viewed in person than they do in these screen shots.

Dynamic picture mode offers the brightest picture.  As for color accuracy, bright white appeared to have some yellow tint while the darker greys have a cyan tint.  Dynamic mode on this projector is certainly very usable when maximum brightness is needed but more accurate picture modes are available as described below.

Presentation picture mode is the 2nd brightest and it offers a more accurate image than does Dynamic mode.  Overall the picture has a modest green tint that is fairly consistent across the grey scale (from near black to full white).  Heavily saturated reds and blues were just a little dim as compared to the greens.  However, this mode would offer sufficient color accuracy to work great for most business presentations.

Cinema picture mode provided very good picture quality while still providing a very bright image (4275 lumens).  With the factory default settings, the color temperature was just a little under the ideal 6500K, but was very consistent across the grey scale.  Overall the out-of-the-box picture quality was very good and this mode would certainly be acceptable to most users for viewing photos or videos where color accuracy is important.  As noted in the section below on video picture quality and in the ‘Performance’ section of this review, I was able to create custom adjustment for color temperature that enabled it to track near the ideal 6500K across the grey scale.

sRGB picture mode had a somewhat low color temperature that resulted in a mild yellow tint across the grey scale.  I found this mode did not offer as accurate colors as the Cinema mode while also not providing a much light output.

Blackboard picture mode is intended for when projecting onto a blackboard.  My observations and the photos above were when projecting on to a matte white screen and as a result I cannot comment on how accurate the colors would be when projecting onto the intended blackboard surface.

DICOM Simulation picture mode is intended for projecting black and white medical images using a unique gamma curve.  Thus color accuracy is not important in this case and I was not able to evaluate the projector’s picture quality for  the intended application.

Text and Graphics Readability

The 1st screen shot photo above shows our standard text test image with the 2nd and 3rd photos being close-ups of the upper portion and the lower portion of that test image.  The 4th photo is with the input resolution from the connected PC being reduced to 1280 x 768, which forced the projector to up-scale the image to the higher native resolution of the projector.  The final two photo show the ability of the projector to display PowerPoint graphics.

In all cases the PowerLite 2265U performed very well producing images with excellent readability of the text.

 

Video Quality

The above screen shots were with the PowerLite 2265U operating in Cinema picture mode and with the custom color temperature adjustments shown in the Performance section of this review.  The 1st 7 photos above are from the movie ‘The Fifth Element’ and the next 7 photos are from ‘Casino Royale’.  After those are a photo from a MS Windows desktop followed by 6 photos taken from various Directv channels.

The overall picture quality was better when viewed in person than they appear in the above photos.  I rate the picture quality for viewing video/movies as very good with the out-of-the-box settings for cinema picture mode and improving to excellent (for a business class projector) with some small adjustments for color temperature (RGB gain and offset adjustments as detailed in the Performance section of this review).  Flesh tones were excellent and I have included several screen shots above that show close-ups of peoples faces.

Since the projector has 1920 x 1200 native resolution, it can display 1080p, full HD, video at it native 1920 x 1080 resolution with a little unused area above and below the projected image.  Thus Blu-ray discs, and other HD video content, can be displayed at the full HD resolution and the projector’s optics are good enough to provide full HD resolution visible on the screen.  In other words, this projector puts up some very sharp images.

The one weakness of the PowerLite 2265U is the moderately elevated black level, which is typical for business and classroom class projectors in general and especially those using 3LCD technology, as used it the 2265U.  This results in really dark scenes tending to look rather ‘flat’ with no deep blacks displayed.  Thus, bright scenes look great but dark scenes only OK, but even so, perhaps a little above average for a 3LCD business/classroom projector.  This limitation only becomes visible when viewing video in a really dark environment, since even modest room lighting will light up the screen to the point where blacks and deep grays will be washed out.  If this were marketed as a home theater projector, where total light control is expected, then the black level performance could be an issue.  However, as a business/classroom projector, where some room lighting is expected, then the black level performance of the PowerLite 2265U is not a significant negative considering this projector performs well in the most important areas of image quality needed for use in business or classroom environment.

The PowerLite 2265U does have an automatic (dynamic) iris that when used reduces the black levels on dark scenes.  The automatic iris menu offers setting for Off, Normal and High Speed.  When viewing video, I found that even the high speed setting resulted in somewhat slow action for the iris.  When a scene changed from fairly bright to full black it would take what appeared to be more than 1/2 second for the automatic iris to fully dim the image.  As a result I could see the iris working more frequently than what I am accustomed to seeing with the dynamic irises used on home theater class projectors.  However, with the PowerLite 2265U, as a business class projector, this feature could be useful for when the projector is being used to project video in a room with fairly subdued room lighting.

Sound Quality

Let’s face it, no portable projector is going to offer high fidelity sound quality.  However, the PowerLite 2265U’s single 16 watt built-in speaker does a very good job given it small size.  The maximum usable volume level was loud enough for use in a moderate size conference room or classroom.  There was not real bass, but the overall tonal balance was good and overall the performance was well above average for this class of portable projector.  If higher quality and/or higher volume levels are needed, there is always the option of using an external powered speaker system connected to the projector’s rear panel audio output port.