Projector Reviews

Sony VPL-VW40: 1080p Home Theater Projector Review – Image Quality-8

More James Bond. This Casino Royale image from Blu-ray disc, makes an an excellent test of shadow detail. You can look in the trees on the left, but primarily, concern yourself with the roof.

On many lesser projectors, when watching, the roof is basically invisible or you can see just a little of the left roof line, and maybe some detail in the roof towards the top left. On great projectors, the detail is visible throughout the roof.

That’s what shadow detail is all about. Without it, you get large, dark areas lacking in detail. With great shadow detail, the image looks more complete, less like something’s missing. Here are four images. The standard size images below are all the same (from the Sony VPL-VW60), however when you click on them you will get larger versions, greatly overexposed, to show you what each projector is capable of.

Sony VPL-VW40 projector
Epson Home Cinema 1080UB projector
Sony VPL-VW60 projector
JVC DLA-RS2 projector

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bottom line: The Sony does an excellent job overall. That’s not to say it is best in class. Although very close, the Epson, for basically the same price, has the advantage. Understand, I’ve primarily compared the VW40, with other top performing projectors, as most of the competition at the VW40’s price, and below, come up noticeably short. Those that do reveal good shadow detail often have significantly inferior black levels, so that detail may be there, but the images look washed out by comparison.