Posted on July 19, 2018 By Nikki Zelinger
Panasonic PT-MZ670U Projector Review – Performance: Brightness, Contrast, Audible Noise
The Panasonic PT-MZ670U has a brightness claim of 6,500 lumens. I am happy to say the projector hit its claim! Most projectors fall up to 25% below claim, so when a projector does hit (or beat) its brightness claim, it truly is cause for celebration. That said, the MZ670U measure just over claim, at 6,529 lumens, but it wasn’t in the mode that I would have expected. Typically, if a projector has a mode called Dynamic, that is the brightest mode – in the case of this Panasonic, that mode is White Board.
The second brightest mode is DICOM SIM., which, as mentioned, is a mode that one would only use when needing to read high contrast films such as X-Rays, or negatives from a film camera (though I imagine this is a much less common application). DICOM SIM. measured at 6,171 lumens. The next brightest mode is Blackboard, coming in at 5,812 lumens, and then Dynamic, at 5,597 lumens. Standard Mode, the projector’s “best mode,” in my opinion, for presentations and some video, measured at 4,377. Natural Mode, which, again, becomes Cinema Mode when plugged into a Blu-ray player, came in at 4,233 lumens.
In regards to contrast, I have two words: really good. Manufacturers make their claims – in the case of the MZ670U, it’s 3,000,000:1 – but we try to look at contrast in terms of how good the black levels are, rather than going off the claim. The Panasonic is a bright projector. I never can quite prepare myself for such a high lumen count. In my experience, these higher-lumen-count projectors often fall short in terms of black levels.
That said, the PT-MZ670U didn’t disappoint. I was truly impressed with the black level performance of this projector. Sure, blacks aren’t true black, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find that on anything other than a really expensive JVC for the home theater market. For business and education, it’s just not as important. I would say the projector produces a dark gray for blacks, though they are completely recognizable as black and you’re not likely to notice unless you’re looking for it.
The image below shows a photo from a scene in Journey to Space, where the Bigelow space station has been rendered in space. The blacks look black – more so in this photo than in real life, but it comes close. The black background really accentuates the rather excellent color of the image.
This is another area where the Panasonic PT-MZ670U really shines. When in ECO Mode, the projector has a rated fan noise of 26 db. That’s super quiet. So quiet, in fact, that a whisper will drown it out. That’s right, your students’ whispering is louder than the fan of this projector.
I can definitely attest to the low fan noise of this projector. I had the MZ670U on the high rear shelf I normally use for our home theater projector, the Epson Home Cinema 5040UB, which has a low rating of just over 30 db (the Panasonic is a beast of a machine that could probably fit our projector, casing and all, inside, and yet it has a quieter fan). I didn’t notice the fan noise at all while taking my photos when I had the projector on ECO in Cinema Mode.
At full power, the Panasonic PT-MZ670U also has an impressive rating – just 36 db. That’s great for a projector this size, and I could barely hear the fan while at full power. This will be particularly useful in houses of worship, where quiet is often necessary, as well as in classrooms and lecture halls, so that the students can focus on learning instead of the sound of the fan.
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