Home Theater Projector Review – General Performance

HC1080UB Menus

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HC1080UB User Memory Settings

HC1080UB Projector - Remote Control

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HC1080UB Lens Throw and Lens Shift

Epson’s Home Cinema 1080UB has exceptional placement flexibility! The zoom lens is an industry best 2.1:1, meaning that the closest you can place the projector to the screen is slightly less than half the distance of the further back you can place it. With this range, the projector is ideal for shelf mounting in most rooms, and of course it can be ceiling mounted almost anywhere you need to place it, as well.

Using the numbers below, you can figure out the distances for your sized screen, easily, with a calculator. For a 100 inch,16:9 diagonal screen the front of the projector can be as close as 10.4 feet, or as far back as 22.2 feet.

The Epson HC1080UB not only has a flexible zoom lens, but also offers more vertical lens shift (and it has plenty of horizontal lens shift as well), than all but a couple of other projectors. For that same 100″ screen, the lens of the projector can be placed as high as 22 inches above the top of the screen surface, or as low as 22 inches below the bottom. And, of course, it can sit anywhere, in between.

HC1080UB SDE and Rainbow Effect, Pixel Visibility

This is a three panel LCD projector – 3LCD – and as such, has no spinning color filter wheel like all the single chip DLP projectors have. As such, there is no possibility of the Rainbow Effect.

Screen Door Effect, is also not an issue, unless you want to sit much closer than most people would consider remotely reasonable. Each new generation of LCD panels has a less visible pixel structure than the last, and the new D7 C2Fine panels have significantly improved designe to reduce pixel visibility. I simply never noticed pixel structure, even sitting at my usual 11.5 – 12.5 feet from a large, 128 inch diagonal screen, except on occasional “signage” such as the graphics with scores on a football game. Even then, I never noticed, unless I was looking for it. (Same is true for white movie credits on a dark background.) I must mention (again), I have very good corrected vision, with my glasses – I can read the 20/15 line at the eye doctor’s with either eye. That tends to make me more critical of pixel structure than anyone with “merely” perfect 20/20 vision.

HC1080UB Projector Brightness

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Theatre Black 1 468 lumens (after color adjustments)
Theatre Black 2: 358 lumens (said to be the best mode for black and white films)
Theatre 482 lumens
Natural 530 lumens

Ahh, I love bright, and the Epson Home Cinema 1080UB, overall, is a bright projector. In it’s best mode, it’s a little brighter than the average 1080p projector, although not as bright as the two JVC projectors. By the time you kick it into its brightest mode – Dynamic, it is brighter than all but a couple of under $10,000 projectors, most notably the exceptionally bright Optoma HD81-LV. Even the very bright InFocus IN82, which is much brighter in best mode, is about the same in brightest

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Living Room 915 lumens
Dynamic 1818 lumens (default settings – green is way up)
Dynamic 1527 lumens (after some adjustments to “tame” the colors a bit to make everything look more natural)

I should note here, that all measurements below are with the fan in High brightness mode. The low power lamp mode (when measured in Theater Black 1, came in almost a perfect 20% darker than lamp on full power. That 20% drop should be pretty much consistant, for all color modes.

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Home Theater Projector Review – General Performance

HC720 Menus

Epson continues to use the same overall menu look and feel, that they’ve been using for a number of years. The menus change slightly, but Epson has a nice, logical system that is pretty easy to navigate.

The first menu is the Picture menu, shown here. The first item is the Color mode which when selected brings up a menu showing the seven color modes, seen in the second image.

They are organized from top to bottom, pretty much by brightness. The brightest is Dynamic, then Living Room, and so on. Theater and Theater Black 1 are very close to each other in brightness. I’m not sure about sRGB, I ignored that setting.

The Input Adjust lets you control brightness and contrast, as well as white and black levels.

Further down on the Picture menu is Color Adjustment. Here’s where you find the controls for gamma, RGB, and RGBCMY, all shown below.

Click to enlarge. So close.

The Settings menu, shown here controls keystone correction, various user controls like adding a personalized logo, as well as projection mode (front, rear, ceiling, etc.)

Inside the Settings menu, is the Operation sub-menu, shown below. the Operations menu includes a sleep mode (to shut down the projector when there’s no active source), the 12 volt screen trigger control, child lock, and the high altitude fan mode.

HC720 User Memory Settings

Wow, once again, Epson leads the pack. There are nine savable memory settings! That should keep everyone in the world satisfied. When you modify the settings for, say, Living Room mode, it will put that in one of the memories, and name it Living Room

Click Image to Enlarge

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