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Epson Powerlite Pro L1500, L1505 Laser Projectors Review: Features 3

Posted on July 8, 2016 by Art Feierman

CFI - Creative Frame Interpolation

All of Epson's L series laser projectors offer CFI, not just the L1505 and L1500.  With CFI - creative frame interpolation - sometimes called "smooth motion" extra frames are inserted into the content, so that objects moving quickly across the images, from one frame to the next, can be smoothed by having those moving objects half way between frame 1 and frame two, by creating a frame 1a.

This is a common feature on home theater projectors over about $2000 and it's showing up on a number of commercial projectors as well.  Epson has a lot of experience with CFI, so no surprise that it works very well on the Powerlite Pro L1505 that I'm working with.  Smoothing is effective, especially on 24fps content, but also on faster frame rates.

Note, like a number of other features, CFI is disabled when pixel shifting is engaged.  That makes sense, since pixel shifting is already "firing" the panels twice, once, then shifting and firing again with slightly different processed data.

Epson L1500 and L1505 - Advanced Networking and Emulation Mode

No surprises here, like all larger venue commercial projector manufacturers, Epson offers up some pretty advanced networking.  Much of that is accomplished by offering compatibility with Crestron RoomView, AMX, Extron XTP, Control4 SDDP, and DMX Art-Net (more on this last one, elsewhere).

With all that support these Epsons support remote monitoring, push notifications, messaging, scheduling, Content over IP, and a lot more.

We don't test networking, but these network control compatibilities in part, should assure you that the networking capabilities are there and work.

One very interesting new feature found on these laser projectors is Epson's Emulation mode. Short version: It allows the L series projectors to emulate - and therefore accept Sony, Panasonic, Mitsubishi, and NEC command codes.

This is big, because it makes it much simpler to integrate one, or a number of these Epson laser projectors into existing networks of projectors that started out with projectors from those other brands.

It's only the past 4-5 years that Epson has been making a significant push into large venue projectors, (and never more so than with the launch of these 9 new lasers).  By comparison some of those other companies' have been building projectors have been going into large deployments for far longer.  If you are an IT/AV manager, should you have a lot of, for example) big Sony projectors, to switch, going forward, to Epson projectors without having to change all the protocols to Epson's standard ones.  (Good thinking, Epson!)

Content over IP

In the good old days, content came either from a computer, or a video source.  Many networkable projectors today, however have far more capabilities. The L1500 and L1505 can present content directly over the network, such as stored files and presentations.  Of course it can also work with computers, all kinds of video sources, and also plays the BYOD game well, working with tablets, smart phones etc. - there's an optional wireless module to help out with that.

Bottom line, Content over IP is hardly a unique feature but a very useful one for corporations, schools and school districts, etc. who are networking computers and projectors.

L1500U and L1505U support HDBaseT and 3G-SDI

HDBaseT lets you run HDMI distances of up to 100 meters (about 328 feet) over low cost CAT5e/CAT6 wire.  Support is built into these Epson projectors, but you will need the optional transmitter to implement.

The cost savings generate by using HDBaseT can be very significant.

3G-SDI is a long distance solution for live video.  this allows these Epson projectors to interface directly to an HD (up to 1080p / WUXGA) camera 100 meters away over coax.  FYI there are two other hi-def SDI standards. HD-SDI which is lower - supports 720p/WXGA content, and then there's 4K-SDI - you guessed it, it will perform the same as 3G-SDI but at 4K resolution.  I'm pleased to see Epson implement the 3G version.  Many large venue projectors seem happy with just HD-SDI support.  This is a big feature with big benefits for rental and staging customers, Houses of Worship (they are very big on live video and projectors), convention centers, university classrooms, and corporate auditoriums and training rooms.

Split Screen


Epson split screen capability, in this instance showing one window as larger than the other






This is pretty basic, compared to some of these features, but worth reporting.  These Epson laser projectors can project two sources at once, side by side, both with the same sized screen, or with the ability to have one be about twice the size of the other image.  Unlike many projectors claiming split screen, both sources can be live (i.e. videos).

One can quickly switch the images from left to right, change the sizes, and also quickly switch which source's sound will be output.

Multi-PC w/Moderator and Easy-MP

These are two of Epson's software based enhancements. Nothing new here, Epson's been offering Easy-MP for a really long time.  Moderator is newer, but also around for a few years.  You'll find compatibility with these capabilities on all Epson's networking projectors.

Here's what they are about.

Multi-PC Moderator loaded onto computers tablets or phones allows this Powerlite Pro L1505 projector (and other Epson's supporting Moderator, to project four sources simultaneously into four quadrants.  That could be two PC's an iPhone and a tablet, or some other combinations.  The four sources can be chosen from up to 64 separate sources selected in Moderator.  Perfect for classroom type trainings, as well as for showing content simultaneously from different types of sources.

If you would like to see Moderator in action on another Epson projector we did a full feature on doing the Multi-PC Moderator capability on our video about one of Epson's low cost installation projectors.  To check it out click Epson PowerLite 97H (Summary)  The demonstration starts 5 minutes and 2 seconds into the video.  Pretty cool!  Great in classrooms, video conferencing environments, houses of worship, training rooms, etc.

Easy-MP is Epson's simple command and control that lets one control projector features from computers over a network.  Consider it a somewhat simpler alternative to major protocols such as Crestron RoomView.  I do believe it has been around for more than a decade.  It definitely works.  Easy-MP let's you do a whole lot of advanced control, including most of the things mentioned earlier in discussing networking:

  • Remote access, control through a network
  • Remote monitoring of up to 1,024 Epson networked projectors
  • View status, including input sources, power on/off, lamp life hours and more
  • Email notification (SMTP) to send alerts to your handheld device, computers...
  • Preventative maintenance features including temperature levels and error alerts
  • Schedule filter and lamp timer settings
  • Enterprise SNMP plug-in available

Easy-MP is free, it can be downloaded from Epson, but I believe it will also be on a disc in the laser projector box. (Our review unit was an engineering sample, so we didn't get software, manuals, etc.)

DMX Art-Net

DMX is an almost ancient command and control system, that is best known for controlling lighting.  In my younger days, I used DMX to control the lighting in a couple of disco's that I was hired to do lighting and sound for in Philadelphia.  DMX is still used heavily today for stage work, in classrooms too, but you should first think of theaters putting on live shows (Broadway, etc.) and for concerts - especially rock concerts.

With DMX Art-Net, a series of Epson projectors can be controlled along with the rest of the lighting, which includes automating them.  I can see where it would be a powerful way to tackle things like projection mapping (such as is seen in many concerts these days.

I seem to recall an Arcade Fire concert a couple years back (Reflektor Tour), where I would have guessed that it was being used.  (I have no idea whose projectors were being controlled, but it looked "right" for DMX. I've barely worked with DMX in the recent past, but I have restarted a small DMX project in my home as part of our website's "Dream Home Project.  When done, I'll be able to directly control (via DMX) lighting inside the waterfall feature. I've also got an older G series Epson nearby.  I will have to check to see if I can tie it into the same control plan. (OK, enough trivia, back to work.)

DICOM Simulation

DICOM Simulation means these projectors can present medical images - such as X-rays, CAT-scans, MRI's PETs etc., with enough contrast, detail, and quality, and minimal noise, so that these projectors can be used in medical schools, at medical conferences, etc., for education purposes.

DICOM Capable for Teaching / Displaying Medical imaging

DICOM Capable for Teaching / Displaying Medical imaging

DICOM Simulation is not intended, not high enough quality, to be used as a substitute for doctors such as radiologists, reading the original medical films (but these Epsons will get close).  But it is ideal for teaching doctors, nurses, and technicians.  I'm not sure if DICOM is used as a standard for other film reading purposes, such as X-rays of mechanical components, but projectors that are high enough quality for DICOM Simulation likely would be good at that, too.

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