Epson Pro Cinema 810 Projector Review – General Performance

Epson Pro Cinema 810 Projector Menus

I’ve always been a big fan of Epson’s Menu system, and that holds true for the Pro Cinema 810. The menus are well organized and easy to navigate. Due to the the many levels of sub-menus on the Picture menu, there are a lot of images, so, here goes.

There are six main menus, and you can see the other five anytime you are in one of them. The main menus appear on the left side of the menu area. The Picture Menu (first, is the one you are most likely to spend time with, and it certainly holds lots of options.

The first option is the Color Mode, which on other projectors is often called Preset mode, for here are the multiple pre-defined color settings. The image immediately below shows all 7 of the Epson Pro Cinema 810’s prese t “Color” modes.

Not surprisingly, Vivid, and Cinema Day are the brightest.

Epson Pro Cinema 810 Projector Menus

Epson Pro Cinema 810 Projector Menus: Slideshow

Five of the 7 modes run the projector at full power on the lamp. HD and Silverscreen, however switch the lamp to low power. I’ll discuss this further as we get to User Memory

Next on the Picture menu, is the Input Adjustment sub-menu selecting this let’s you access two more menus, the first with controls for white level and black level, the second, for brightness and contrast.

Shown to the right, is the White level adjust, and Black level adjust.

The other menu, for brightness and Contrast looks essentially the same.

The Color Adjustment Sub-menu has a lot of the fine tuning action on it. If you get yourself a basic calibration disk here’s where you will be doing most of your adjusting.

First is the color temperature where you can select from several preset color temperatures, such as 6500K (ideal for movies) (which as you will see, in the Calibration section, was less than perfectly accurate).

The skin tone control is a nice touch. I found that 3 or 4 were the best settings (3 is the default)

RGB/RGBCMY is where the individual color controls exist. Below are images of both of those menus. For example, to do my basic color temperature correction, I work with the RGB menu shown here.

More sophisticated – and useful for a more complete calibration is the RGBCMY (primary red green blue, plus secondary colors: Cyan, magenta, and yellow).

With this menu, for example, you can actually affect the actual color of red.

Perhaps no less important is the gamma menu, which lets you select from a number of presets (2.2 is considered standard for movies. You can, however create your own gamma table, if desired, such as one that would lighten near black parts of the image without affecting bright areas.

Also on the Picture menu is control of the Auto Iris, which does frame by frame adjustment. The Auto Iris is key to Epson’s claimed and most impressive 10,000:1 contrast ratio, as noted, with images in the Image Quality section. The reset feature on this menu only affects settings in the Picture menus.

Not shown is the Image menu which allows you to change aspect ratio.

Shown here, is the Advanced submenu from the main Image Menu. Of particular note here is the Output scaling which allows you to control overscan, when needed. (enlarging the image so that noise at the outer edges of some signals are no longer visible).

The Settings Menu as you can see, covers a wide range of items, from keystone correction, to putting in your own logo to display, set the orientation (position) of the Epson projector (front, rear, ceiling, table), menu language etc.

In the operation submenu, you can set the sleep timer, setup the screen trigger, set child security, switch to high altitude mode, etc.

In the Display submenu, you can control where the menus appear on the screen, Menu color schemes, the background color when there is no signal, and other mostly non-critical functions.

Moving right along, next comes Memory, however I’ll go over that briefly in the next section down on User Memory.

The Info Menu does just that it tells you the hours on your lamp, the source, resolution etc.

And finally the Reset Menu (not shown) allows you to reset the lamp counter (when you replace a lamp), or to reset the entire projector back to factory default settings.

 

Epson Pro Cinema 810 User Memory Settings

In previous Epson Cinema series projectors, there have been 9 or 10 savable settings, and they were, cleverly, labeled Memory 1 through 9. The Epson Pro Cinema 810, however has, instead given them names, a major improvement. Following the concept of separate Day and Night (ambient light/no ambient light) from the ISF (the organization of professional display calibrators) there are five pairs of memories. As you can see, two each (day/night) general, plus two each for DVD, VCR, “X” (extra?), and one last one called Custom. Now, I don’t think too many people are still using VCR’s so probably that one could be used for your 2nd DVD player, of the hi-def variety – HD-DVD or Blu-ray. You get the idea, you can set up about as many scenarios as you could possibly want!

As I mentioned only two of the color presets – HD and Silverscreen, run the lamp in low power mode. As I understand it, therefore, if you want to create a user memory that runs the lamp in low power, you’ll want to start off with one of those modes, make your changes and then save them. That should do the trick, although I must confess to not having tried it.

Epson rates their lamp at 1700 hours in full power, and 3000 in low power (HD, Silverscreen) modes. That is fairly typical.

Also fairly typical, is that, if you ceiling mount your projector, you are going to have to unmount it to change out the lamp. As I said, fairly typical, but there are definitely a number of home theater projectors that don’t require unmounting. Something to think about if you projector needs to be mounted in a precarious position.

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