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JVC DLA-RS400U Home Theater Projector Review

Posted on April 30, 2016 by Art Feierman

Specs Preview

JVC JVC RS-400 Specs
Price 3995
Technology D-ILA-3
Native Resolution 3840x2160
Brightness (Manufacturer Claim) 1700
Contrast 40000:1
Zoom Lens Ratio 2.00:1
Lens Shift Yes
Lamp Life 3500
Weight 34.0
Warranty 2 years

DLA-RS400U Overview

On the next pages we will discuss special features including e-Shift4 (JVC’s latest version of their pixel shifting). From there we’ll tour you the hardware including the lens, inputs, control panel and remote – and because the remote and the menus are closely inter-related, we’ll also run through all the major and some minor menus.

Then comes the “good stuff” – picture quality, where we’ll talk about out of the box picture quality, black levels / dynamic range, shadow detail, how this JVC projector does on HDTV and Sports as well as movies. Next comes performance – brightness, affects of the lens settings and eco mode on brightness, image and audible noise. Finally, we’ve got a summary page – basially the short version of what’s in between this page and the summary, for those of you in a hurry, or just interested in the big picture.

OK, now you know what you are in for, so, let’s continue.

The RS400 is the least expensive of the three JVC models. Interestingly the two more expensive ones, the RS500 and RS600 are the same as each other except that per JVC the RS600 at $9999 simply uses the best components (lens, power supplies, etc), and thus costs $3000 more than the RS500.

I should mention now that JVC for years has been known for the best black level performance around, which translates to the deepest blacks, and with it stunning dark scenes that only a couple of other projectors can do battle with. Well, you get better black levels on those more expensive JVCs, however, from a value proposition standpoint, I do think that the RS400 X550 is definitely the best value. Hey, if $6999 or $9999 is in your working budget (so that you don’t have to compromise say on the screen or audio system to afford one of those, then by all means, “go for it!” But if you are a budding, really serious home theater / movie afficiando without the deep pockets, the RS400 will serve you brilliantly.

Unlike with many projector manufacturers its been tough to get a review unit out of JVC, so this year, like last, I want to thank the great folks at AV Science – the well known JVC dealer and the folks who created AVSforum, the largest audio visual forum on the web.

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DLA-RS400U / DLA-X550 Highlights

  • 1700 lumens – nicely bright, slightly brighter than its predecessor
  • Uses 3 JVC built LCoS panels (chips)
  • 3D – improved from the previous generation (needs optional emitter and glasses)
  • 4K HDMI inputs including Blu-ray UHD support (HDMI 2.0, HDCP 2.2 copy protection (although it is not a true 4K projector)
  • Excellent black level performance
  • Audibly quieter than most
  • 2:1 motorized zoom lens for placement flexibility
  • Extensive lens shift for even better placement flexibility
  • Pixel shifting for more detail – smoother image than a 1080p projectors lacking it
  • Lower price than its predecessor
  • 3 year parts and labor warranty

Time to learn about many of the DLA-RS400U's special features – check out the next page.

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