The PT-VMZ50 uses a laser light source along with a phosphor wheel instead of a conventional lamp. Perhaps the most obvious advantage that a laser light source has over a traditional lamp-based projector is the life of the light source – Panasonic claims 20,000 hours of laser life for the PT-VMZ50. As with a lamp-based system, the life rating is the point where 50% of the brightness has been lost. If the PT-VMZ50 was used 40 hours a week, 20,000 hours equates to over 9 ½ years of operation.
Another advantage is the image quality should be more stable over time than with lamp-based projectors. The PT-VMZ50 has a reusable air filter that in a normal environment shouldn’t require cleaning for 20,000 hours. The filter can be washed and used up to two times before replacement.
As with all 3LCD projectors, a dichroic prism is used to re-assemble the three different colors into a single full-color image. Like most 3LCD projectors, PT-VMZ50 produces as many color lumens as it does white lumens, which ensures a bright, vibrant image.
There are four modes to adjust the brightness output of the laser light source:
- Normal - 100% brightness at high fan speed which results in an estimated laser lamp life of about 20,000 hours.
- ECO - Reduces brightness by 70% at high fan speed which extends laser lamp life to approximately 24,000 hours.
- Quiet - Reduces brightness by 70% while reducing fan speed to lower noise. This results in an estimated laser lamp life of about 20,000 hours.
- User - The laser engine brightness can be adjusted from 50 to 100%. Increasing the lamp brightness level decreases the laser lamp’s life.