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Optoma HD65 projector, Pros, Cons, and Typical Capabilities

Posted on May 22, 2008 by Art Feierman

Optoma HD65 projector, Pros, Cons, and Typical Capabilities

Optoma HD65 Projector: Pros

  • One of the very best 720p projectors when it comes to color accuracy, "out of the box"
  • A truly well balanced, film-like image.
  • Very small, makes it viable as a portable - take it on vacation, or to a friends - just add a source, and a boom box, and you are in business
  • Viable as a portable widescreen business projector for smaller room presentations
  • Supports 24fps, not all 720p projectors do. (Supports means no judder, since no 3:2 pull-down is needed to convert movie speed (24fps to video speed 30 fps)
  • Very good remote control
  • Filter free design for minimal maintenance
  • Good menus
  • 12 volt screen trigger
  • Being DLP, for a 720p projector, pixel visibility is not an issue for most, at normal seating distances

Optoma HD65 Projector: Cons

  • Very limited zoom lens, for limited placement flexibility
  • No lens shift - no shelf mounting
  • Optoma's typical lack of multiple savable user settings
  • ImageAI occasionally visible coming from darker scenes to brighter scenes. If the bright scene isn't changing much, the brightness can be seen jumping up a bit
  • A fan noise is louder than most projectors, although not exceptionally so
  • Backlit buttons on remote, may actually be too bright!
  • Only a 1 year parts and labor warranty (which is becoming pretty typical, but there are competitors with 2, or 3 year warranties out there)

Optoma HD65 Projector: Typical Capabilities

  • Manual - Printed, not on disc
  • Fair selection of inputs (including HDMI 1.3 with Deep Color support)
  • Lamp Life
  • Black level performance
  • Shadow detail

Optoma HD65 Summary: The Bottom Line

I've said it earlier, I'll say it again:

The Optoma HD65, is a well balanced projector, brighter than most, very affordable (one of the least expensive out there), and produces one of the most color accurate images of any projector, right out of the box, without having to mess around. All of this considered, it easily earned our Hot Product Award, and I see it as a contender for one of the two Best in Class categories in the upcoming 720p Projector Comparison, athough there is plenty of competition.

Despite an overall excellent image quality, the HD65 is first and foremost, an excellent choice for people who just want a projector that will do a great job, without the owner having to spend time messing around with it.

Even though there are competitors with lower fan noise, and slightly better black levels, the HD65 will also appeal to many home theater enthusiasts. It suffers no glaring flaws (although the previously mentioned jump in brightness, several seconds after transitioning from a dark scene to a relatively stationary bright scene, will annoy some), in terms of picture quality. These same folks, though may be a bit allergic to the higher than average fan noise, and the more than typical light leakage. The light leakage is generally pretty harmless, especially if your walls are dark.

Optoma's on a roll, they've now impressed me twice, in just over a month, and I think, have two good projectors to do battle against the 3LCD competition, and to give home theater folks some really good choices in the lower price ranges.

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