Laser Light Engine
The PT-RZ670BU features a light engine using a dual laser drive system where a laser is used to illuminate a yellow phosphor that in turn emits yellow light. With most other projectors using a similar arrangement, the yellow light from the phosphor wheel is then separated into its red and green component colors (using filters) and those primary colors, along with the blue light from the 2nd laser, are used to create the R-G-B light source used by the projector. While Panasonic does produce the R-G-B primary colors in this manner, they also use the yellow light coming from the phosphor wheel. Thus, this model uses 4 colors for the light source to produce a rapid sequence of red, blue, green and yellow sub-images. It appears Panasonic is doing this to increase the image brightness above what would be possible without the yellow component. I have provided more information the consequences of this later in the Picture Quality and Performance sections of this review.
The laser light engine is rated at 20,000 hours of use which works out to be about 2 1/2 years if used 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This is intended to be a very low maintenance model for fixed installations where it will be used a lot, but it would also be great for trade shows and use in large venues where a rugged high lumens projector is needed.
The PT-RZ670BU is supplied with a 1.4X power zoom lens and the lens is interchangeable in that it can be removed and replaced with a different lens. In fact Panasonic offers several other compatible lenses including zoom and fixed focus models. These optional lenses include ultra-short, short, medium and long throw models. The Ultra-short throw lens, model ET-DLE030, has a MSRP of $7,949.
Using the zoom lens supplied with the PT-RZ670BU, I verified the lens' position is centered with the projected image while vertical and horizontal lens shift if offered to provide mounting versatility. This availability of a wide range of lens options combined with fairly wide range vertical and horizontal lens shift make this projector compatible with most projector/screen geometries.
Support for Multi-Projector Setups
Large displays using multiple projector have become more commonplace for large commercial advertising and promotional displays. The PT-RZ670BU comes with the tools to create such high impact displays will full support for edge bending of adjacent images being projected by additional PT-RZ670 projectors. Support is provided for multi-screen setups The projector includes calibration adjustments for matching the brightness and colors between the projectors. Adjustments are provided for modifying the geometry of the image to fit onto curved screens . Software is also provided for use on the PC providing the source image to adjust the geometry to fit the image onto more complex non-flat/non rectangular projection surfaces. An optional upgrade Kit (model ET-UK20) is offered featuring Geometry Manager Pro for more flexible geometric adjustment and modified masking functions
Panasonic describes the professional system integration features as follows:
- DIGITAL LINK—the Single Cable Solution:
- Allows transmission of digital signals (HDMI, uncompressed HD video, and control signals) up to 328 ft. with a single CAT5e cable or higher
- The optional ET-YFB100G Digital Interface Box makes setup easy for ceiling-mounted and other permanent installations
- Art-Net compatibility simplifies system integration
- Abundant terminals, including SDI (3G/HD/SD), DVI-D and HDMI inputs
- Multi Projector Monitoring and Control Software allow multiple projectors to be managed together over a wired LAN
- Web Browser Control
- Optional Early Warning Software ET-SWA100 Series compatible
- Other valuable features:
- Shutter function with fade in/out effect. (processing time controllable between 0 and 10 second)
- PJLink™ compatible
- P-in-P function
- Scheduling function
In addition to the usual Picture modes, Panasonic has included a DICOM Simulation mode intended to display images approximating the DICOM (Digital Imaging and Communication in Medicine) Part 14 Grayscale Standard Display Function used with B/W medical imaging (such as X-rays). This mode optimizes black/gray/white detail with a custom gamma curve. Panasonic notes that “although the DICOM name is used, the projector is not a medical device, and should not be used for purposes such as diagnosis of display images." However, it appears the DICOM Sim. mode would be suitable for use in a classroom for teaching purposes.