Panasonic PT-AE4000 – Competitors

How does the Panasonic PT-AE4000 compare to other 1080p home theater projectors on the market? In this section we consider the practical and performance differences, between the PT-AE4000 projector and some of the toughest competition.
12/4/2009 – Art Feierman – See more at: https://www.projectorreviews.com/panasonic/panasonic-pt-ae4000-competitors/?preview=true&preview_id=9150&preview_nonce=7bbb524c5e#sthash.thLGs4V1.dpuf

PT-AE4000 vs. Epson Home Cinema 8500UB, Pro 9500UB

View a more in-depth comparison of the Panasonic PT-AE4000U vs. Epson Home Cinema 8500UB in our Home Projector Comparison Report 2010.

Since the PT-AE4000 and the Epson Home Cinema 8500UB are considered the two dominant mid-priced projectors and best selling projectors, a separate comparison article between these two projectors, has been created. You can click for the comparison. The Epson Pro Cinema 9500UB is almost identical to the 8500UB. Relative to the Panasonic, the big difference with the 9500UB vs. 8500UB is support for an anamorphic lens on the 9500UB. That’s noteworthy, since the Panasonic does also support an anamorphic lens, and also can emulate having one. The Epson 9500UB, is significantly more expensive however, selling for about $3500 including a spare lamp and a ceiling mount. Still that’s about $1000 more, whereas the 8500UB is effectively about the same price as the Panasonic. OK, check out the full comparison article (it’s the same link as above).

Panasonic PT-AE4000 vs. Mitsubishi HC6800

Sorry, haven’t gotten around to the HC6800 yet. Look for how it compares to the PT-AE4000, in the competitors page of the Mitsubishi review, when it comes out.

Panasonic PT-AE4000 vs. BenQ W6000

As I was working on this page, I also received a W6000 with the new firmware, designed to improve its dynamic iris, making it less intrusive. BenQ was successful.

We have here two projectors that are very different. The BenQ W6000 is the more expensive of the two, with a current MAP price of $2499. That’s $500 more than the Panasonic. Unlike Epson, BenQ can’t play catch-up though in cost, for its lamp has the same hourly spec (2000 hours at full, 3000 in low power), as the Panasonic PT-AE4000. So, at the time of this writing – Thanksgiving weekend, the BenQ is technically about $500 more than the Panasonic, although I suspect the difference is a little less than that.

This is a fascinating comparison, as the projectors are very different. The BenQ of course is single DLP, while the Panny is 3LCD. The BenQ has extremely good placement flexibility for a DLP projector, but still not as much as the Panasonic. Still, the BenQ does well enough that it will work in most folks’ rooms, whether shelf or ceiling mounting (and tabletop too).

The compelling difference is “best” mode brightness where the Panasonic weighs in at 430 lumens against about 1000 for the BenQ. Even with Brilliant Color off, the BenQ still has double the Panasonic PT-AE4000’s lumens. Mind you, though in “brightest,” the two are roughly comparable.

Now the BenQ has impressive black level performance, but it’s not quite up to the Panasonic. Both use dynamic irises.

The Panasonic as you know, is feature laden. The BenQ supporta an anamorphic lens but can’t emulate having one, like the Panasonic’s Lens Memory option. That said, not many people are going with either, sticking with the traditional 16:9 (HDTV) aspect ratio screens, instead.

The thing is, when I have both in their “best” modes (and even with Brilliant Color off, and lamp on eco – to try to bring the W6000’s brightness down), it’s still much brighter than the Panasonic. Viewing them both side by side, the BenQ’s brightness draws the eye, and in general, the projector will offer more bang.

On the other hand, what happens, say, if we compare the PT-AE4000 in “Brightest” mode, against the BenQ in “Best” mode?

Very interesting. The Panasonic in that contest, still has the better black levels, and is slightly brighter than the BenQ in “best”. On the other hand the BenQ definitely exhibits better, more accurate color.

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