Projector Reviews

JVC DLA-RS1 1080p Home Theater Projector Review – General Performance 3

JVC DLA-RS1 Audible Noise Levels

The JVC is not perfect (surprise). In Normal lamp mode (it’s quiet mode), JVC rates the projector at 25db, which is extremely quiet, which is confirmed by working with it. When I switch to High fan mode, however it does get noisier. It’s still not as noisy as the DLP projectors, nor as quiet as the LCD powered Panasonic and it’s virtually silent competition, the Mitsubishi HC5000. I would put the noise level around 30 – 32 db in full power. The good news is that it is a particularly low pitched sound. Total quiet fanatics might have an issue, but after 3 dozen hours of viewing – almost all in high power, I never found it to be intrusive, only really noticing it softly when on pause. Even durning quiet scenes, I just never noticed unless listening for it.

The bad news is for you “high altitude” folks. If are in Denver or other “high altitude” locations, the High Altitude setting adds significantly more noise. If you have the lamp set for Normal (low power), and engage High Altitude, the noise level increases, I believe to the same levels as High power mode, with High Altitude turned off.

The real problem occurs combining High Altitude with High Power on the lamp. At this point, the JVC gets rather noisy, and the pitch of the sound rises as well. I don’t measure sound, but we are probably looking at 33db or a little more. If there’s a bright spot, much of the noise seems to come out the exhaust port on the front, so if you have the projector celing mounted close to the screen, you’ll find yourself behind the projector in a slightly quieter place.

If there’s a bright spot for you high altitude people, it’s that High Power on the lamp is only about 15% brighter than Normal. Since the RS1 is one of the brightest projectors projectors around in “best” mode, most of you will just not bother with the lamp on High.

JVC DLA-RS1 Projector Brightness

There’s good, and there’s not so good news here!

The really, really good news is that the projector is extremely bright for a home theater projector in “Best” mode.

Cinema mode (with Color Temp at Middle), even on Normal (low) lamp power, cranked out a very impressive 654 lumens. Kicking the lamp into high power, increased lumen output to a very bright 773 lumens. These numbers are after the minor ajustments for grayscale balance, and should not have affected the brightness by more than a dozen lumens.

The not so good news, is that the projector does not have a lot of extra lumens in its brightest – Dynamic mode, where even in full power, It mustered up only 887 lumens. I must comment that the image quality in Dynamic, however is far better than most projectors in their equivalent brightest modes. I’m sure with tweaking, and sacrificing some color accuracy and image quality, I could probably find an extra 100 lumens, but there seemed no way to get the output up to the 1000+ lumens typical of the DLP 1080p projectors.

Natural mode, produced 768 lumens in High power lamp mode.

The point here, is that the DLA-RS1 has more than its fair share of lumens for movie watching, providing a rather brilliant image compared to the Sony Pearl, or the LCD entries. Not even the Optoma HD81 can match its “best mode brightness”, although the Optoma and BenQ can muster up more lumens with the sacrafice of image quality.

The really nice thing is that the RS1, with lamp power on High, easily handled my 128″ diagonal Firehawk screen! Only the two DLP’s mentioned so far, could also do that in their best mode.