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JVC DLA-RS25 Projector Review

Posted on November 6, 2009 by Art Feierman

Specs Preview

JVC DLA-RS25 Specs
Price 8000
Technology LCoS
Native Resolution 1920x1080
Brightness (Manufacturer Claim) 900
Contrast 50,000:1
Zoom Lens Ratio 2.00:1
Lens Shift Yes
Lamp Life 2000 hours "longer in standard lamp mode" (low power)
Weight 24.7
Warranty 2 Year Parts and Labor

DLA-RS25 Projector Highlights

  • Best black level performance of any home theater projector I've ever seen (other than old CRT projectors)
  • Good sharpness, but just average for 1080p projectors
  • Very good shadow detail
  • "Out of the box" picture is impressive in THX mode but can be improved with a full calibration of this projector
  • Really good post calibration color accuracy
  • Excellent placement flexibility
  • Well above average brightness in "best mode" for movie watching
  • "Brightest mode" isn't much brighter, barely average (or low side of average)
  • Full support for HDMI 1.3b with 24 fps, Deep Color, CEC...
  • Definitely worth the bucks, if you are into performance!

JVC DLA-RS25 Projector Overview

Let's start by getting the housekeeping out of the way. We are pleased to give the DLA-RS25 our Hot Product award. No surprise, of course in that, considering its predecessor (the RS20) not only won a Hot Product Award, but later picked up our top award; "Best In Class - $3500 - $10,000 projectors". So far (although I do have the Sony VPL-WV85 and a couple of other higher end projectors yet to review), the JVC DLA-RS25 (and its twin, the JVC HD950), has to be considered the favorite in this year's "Best in Class" challenge.

Starting from the beginning, what we have here, in the form of the JVC DLA-RS25, is a $8000 list price, 3 panel LCoS projector (liquid crystal on silicon). In today's world of home theater projectors, only two major manufacturers use LCoS, and they are, of course JVC (which calls theirs D-ILA) and Sony (SXRD). Both companies manufacture their own panels.

The JVC RS25, and its identical twin, the HD950 (sold by different dealers), come with excellent placement flexibility, power zoom, focus and lens shift, and are nicely styled in a shiny black piano finish. The RS25 has some gold trim - the lens trim ring and on the top, while I believe the HD950's trim comes in silver - that's not much difference is it?

This JVC projector, is about the best black level performance around, something JVC has been able to claim for its three most recent generations of home theater projectors.

For this year, the JVC RS25 looks and behaves very much like last year's RS20, but along with minor improvements in a number of areas, JVC has added CFI - Creative Frame Interpolation, which will be discussed below.

Finally, a little key background before we get into the heart of this review. I own the JVC RS25 projector's predecessor, the RS20. I bought it earlier this year, because at the time, I strongly felt it was the best overall projector for me, and my budget. The RS25, like the RS20, isn't perfect, but most will agree, it comes about as close as one will find in the under $10,000 price range, and for that matter, rivals many projectors far more expensive, in most ways.

With that in mind, it's no surprise that I really like the DLA-RS25, and the essentially identical DLA-HD950. Time to get into the details.

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