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JVC DLA-RS35 - Competitors

Posted on February 4, 2010 by Art Feierman
How does the JVC DLA-RS35 compare to other 1080p home theater projectors on the market? In this section we consider the practical and performance differences, between JVC's RS35 projector and some of the toughest competition

DLA-RS35 vs. Epson Home Cinema 8500UB, Pro 9500UB

The RS35 is roughly four times the price of the Home Cinema 8500UB, and about three times the price of the Pro Cinema 9500UB.

And, as an owner of the older RS20 and an Epson Home Cinema 1080UB (and having a 9500UB here as well), I have to say that the RS35 is the superior projector.

Those of you seriously interested in this comparison probably fit into these categories.

1. First projector - if you can afford either, you want to know if the JVC is worth the huge difference

2. You have an older Epson UB, and are considering going to the JVC

3. You have an old 720p projector or an old entry level 1080p model , and want to move to an ultra-high contrast 1080p projector.

These "UB" Epson's may have the best black levels of any of the lower cost projectors, but they both still come up short compared to the DLA-RS35, (or any of the less expensive JVC RS projectors).

Not only will you get blacker blacks, but the JVC does it without dynamic iris, so no compression of images that are generally dark but with a few small bright areas. More "pop and wow", on darker scenes

As good as the Epsons are, the RS35 is a real and significant step up in terms of black level performance.

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Shadow details - the JVC has a slight advantage here too. That said, the JVC isn't exceptionally good at shadow detail, just a bit better than the Epson. Both, however are still very reasonably good. Remember, because these projectors have relatively very black blacks, the nearest dark shadow detail, is much darker - and there for harder to spot, than on projectors with inferior black level performance.

Placement flexiblity - both excellent with the Epson spouting more lens shift range.

Warranty - Both 2 years, but the Epson gets the win, for the two year replacement program that's part of theirs.

Color accuracy, natural, look and skin tones. Sorry Epson, the JVC wins, rather easily. The Epson is more of a "pop and wow" projector. On some things it looks right on, but on others just a tiny bit over the top, enough to be less natural looking when it comes to color, and skin tones, We've calibrated a number of Epson UB's and while they are very good, the JVC really nails it by comparison. The JVC though may not be the absolute best on skin tones, (close), but its visibly superior to the Epson in side by side viewings.

If money is tight, and this JVC or the incredibily similar RS25, is just plain out of reach the Epson is a great lower cost alternative. That said, it definitely hasn't as refined a picture, and isn't a projector that a true purist would select, but one that will please most enthusiasts.

The JVC, outmuscles the Epson easily in "best" mode with a rather significant 30% more lumens. Comparing "brightest" - the Epson projectors have an even greater advantage, With over 1300 lumens vs. the JVC's over 850 lumens. I can't tell you how often I wish the brightest mode of my JVC was as bright as my Epson's when I'm watching sports. Still the JVC's almost 900 lumens is definitely acceptable in my room with my 128" Firehawk and with controlled low levels of ambient light. (I'd just like to have more lighting on for sports).

Both, by the way, have Creative Frame interpolation. Here I give the advantage to the Epson. Still, most won't use it for movies, and both are fine for sports.

My last thought: When asked - Is the JVC worth the difference, my answer is, if you can afford either, and you really want a great projector, then - Yes!

JVC DLA-RS35 vs. Mitsubishi HC7000

I didn't have an HC7000 here for the RS35 review, or for that matter, either of the two previous JVC reviews, so I have never gotten to do any side by side viewing.

The Mitsubishi, however stacks up this way. It costs roughly 1/3 of the JVC. Most folks wouldn't compare the JVC to the HC7000, or if they did, they would first compare the Mits to the RS15, or the RS25. The HC7000 is quieter (Mitsubishi LCD home projectors are about the quietest on the market). The Mits image sharpness, is probably just a touch less sharp than the JVC RS35, though it can best the 25, and most other, non DLP competition.

The HC7000 is not anywhere near as bright in "best" mode, and, for that matter, it's not as bright in "brightest" mode either. The HC7000 is a great projector for small screens (best for 100" diagonal or less). Its black levels are in the league of, but not quite as good as the Epson 8500UB discussed above, so the JVC has the significant advantage there, but, like the Epson, the Mitsubishi does offer excellent black level performance.

Shadow detail is about comparable.

When it comes to "out of the box" image quality, the Mitsubishi is "respectable" but a calibration is needed for best results. Calibrating the HC7000 is pretty straight forward for those knowing what they are doing. This year, that's also true for the RS25 and RS35, though not quite the case last year. While we also strongly urge a calibraton of the RS35, it should be noted that the RS35's "out of the box" THX mode is definitely superior to the best mode the Mitsubishi can muster out of the box.

The Mitsubishi HC7000, unlike the RS35, lacks creative frame interpolation. The HC7000 takes a 24fps source up to 48fps, while the JVC goes to 96fps. I don't consider this to be a significant advantage, except to some sensitive to one type of motion blur. More to the point, the RS35 has creative frame interpolation the Mitsubishi lacks.

The JVC has an advantage in placement flexibility.

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