Projector Reviews

NEC NP-PA653UL Projector Review – Hardware 3

NEC NP-PA653UL Projector Review – Hardware 3: Menus

There are five menus on the NEC NP-PA653UL projector: Input, Adjust, Display, Setup, and Info. These menus have many sections, so we will discuss those sections separately. Each section will have a slider with photos of the different sections of the five menus. I found the menu system to be well laid out, with a lot of options and flexibility for adjusting parameters to your liking.

Adjust Menu

I will discuss this menu first, as it is the one that is brought up when you press the Menu button on the remote. There are five sub-menus within the Adjust Menu: Picture, Image Options, Video, 3D Settings, and Lens Memory.

In the Picture sub-menu, there are eight adjustable parameters: Mode, Preset, Detail Settings, Contrast, Brightness, Sharpness, Color, and Hue. There are only two modes – Standard and Professional. The Presets section relates to the color modes, of which there are 7 (these will be discussed on the Picture Quality page, which comes next).

The Detail Settings section allows for control of General Settings, such as Reference (color mode to reference), Gamma Correction, and Dynamic Contrast. The White Balance section is for adjusting parameters for Contrast RGB and Brightness RGB. Color Correction allows for the adjustment of colors within the RGBCMY color spectrum.

On the Image Options sub-menu, you’ll find Horizontal and Vertical Image Adjustment to slightly move the image (this is done digitally and is not lens shift – that’s a physical action). Blanking is used to “crop” the projected image – it will keep the aspect ratio, as it uses “overscan” from 0-100%. That’s a sort of digital zoom where you’re “punching in” to the image. Speaking of Aspect Ratio, you can choose Auto, Normal, 4:3, 5:4, 16:9, 15:9, 16:10, Full, and Native.

The Video sub-menu allows for adjustment of Noise Reduction parameters (Random NR, Mosquito NR, Block NR, Deinterlace, and Contrast Enhancement), as well as Video Level (Normal, Enhanced, Super White, and Auto). This sub-menu also has HDR Mode for 4K HDR-enabled content. The 3D sub-menu has settings for Dual Right and Dual Left, for dual-projection of 3D. Lens Memory, the final sub-menu within the Adjust menu, allows you to save the position of the lens.

Input Menu

NEC NP-PA653UL Input Menu
The NEC NP-PA653UL Input Menu has plenty of options for sourcing a signal.

The Input Menu is a rather simple menu where you can choose where your input signal is coming from. There are quite a few choices – seven, to be exact. Those options are: HDMI 1, HDMI 2 DisplayPort, Computer, HDBaseT, Entry List, and Test Pattern. Test Pattern is used for setup purposes, for projecting an image without connecting the projector to an external source.

Display Menu

The Display Menu consists of the following sections: PIP/Picture By Picture and Geometric Correction. PIP is pretty self-explanatory, and has been around for a long time (I remember when my father would watch sports PIP when I was a kid). Picture By Picture is a similar concept where two images can be displayed side-by-side simultaneously. This can be particularly useful in presentations.

The Geometric Correction on the PA653UL is substantial. There’s the regular Keystone Correction, horizontal and vertical, which corrects the trapezoid-shape of the projected image seen when the projector is mounted at an angle. There’s also Cornerstone, which is useful when stacking projectors (using multiple projectors to create a larger, clear image).

Horizontal Corner, Vertical Corner, Warp and PC Tool are the last of the types of geometric correction on this projector. The Warp and PC Tool correction tools change the shape of the projected image (i.e. bending the sides of the image inward). I’ve included photos of these features so that you can see what each choice for geometric correction accomplishes.

This menu also has the adjustments for Edge Blending, which allows you to Edge Blend the top, bottom, left and right of the image. There’s also Black Level and Blend Curve adjustment here. I talk about the different applications Edge Blending can be used for on our Special Features 2 page – in case you missed that, check it out.

Setup Menu

The Setup Menu consists of four sub-menus, each having a lot of parameters you can adjust: Menu (1), Menu (2), Installation (1), Installation (2). Menu (1) allows for selection of the Language and Color, and allows access to Input Display, Message Display, ID Display, 3D Caution Message, and Display Time. Menu (2) is for adjustment of the Menu Angle and Menu Position.

Installation (1) includes Orientation, Screen, Wall Color, Fan Mode, Light Mode, Ref. White Balance, Static Convergence, Ref. Lens Memory, and Lens Calibration. Installation (2) has Shutter Settings, Control-Tools, Control Panel Lock, Security, Communication Speed, Control ID, Remote Sensor, Network Settings, Source Options, Power Options, and Reset.

Info Menu

This is a really basic menu that shows the Projector Info. I have provided a photo to show what sort of information is provided on this menu for your viewing pleasure. Why waste words when a picture can do so much more?