Reviews of 3LCD Projectors

3LCD projectors display a resplendent color depth and natural images as a result of this 3 chip technology.
3LCD projectors display a resplendent color depth and natural images as a result of this 3 chip technology.

The 3LCD projectors category includes the latest technology used in home theater projectors, and business projectors. See below for a list of 3LCD projector reviews and compare 3LCD projectors with DLP, three chip DLP, LCoS, and LCD systems.

3LCD is actually a copyrighted name associated with the 3LCD Group, a trade group that is comprised of manufacturers manufacturing projectors using LCD technology, and LCD panel manufacturers like Epson and Sony. Let’s say that all 3LCD projectors are LCD projectors, but not all LCD projectors are 3LCD. More below, regarding that.

 

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3LCD projectors – According to industry experts, 3LCD projectors are the dominent species of projectors. They make up well more than half of all projectors manufactured. 3LCD dominates just about all categories of projectors except the extreme high end (3 chip DLP) and the incredibly small Pico projectors.

3LCD Projectors include a solid-state optical design with no moving parts (unlike DLP). The panels (or chips as they are also called) have been all transmissive LCD panels. That is, light passes through the panels.

Most recently, Epson has started manufacturing an “R” series, but until I read more about their design, they sound more like LCoS than LCD, so they may or may not fit into the traditional 3LCD definition.

Here is a helpful resource to compare 3LCD technologies with LCDDLP3 Chip DLP, and LCoS projection systems:

Report: DLP vs. 3LCD vs. LCoS Technology

3LCD Projector Reviews

3LCD Projector Reviews REVIEWS

Image Review

Sony VPL-VW915ES 4K SXRD Home Theater Laser Projector Review

Sony VPL-VW915ES 4K SXRD Home Theater Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: September 8, 2020
  • MSRP:$19,999.99
  • Technology: 3 LCoS panels (SXRD)

Epson PowerLite U50 Business and Education Projector Review

Epson PowerLite U50 Business and Education Projector Review

  • Review Date: July 27, 2020
  • MSRP:$1,149.99
  • Technology: 3LCD

Panasonic PT-MZ16KL Laser Projector Review

Panasonic PT-MZ16KL Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: May 15, 2020
  • MSRP:$33,999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson’s Laser Projectors Transform the World We Know in Entertainment Venues and Other Large-Scale Environments

Epson’s Laser Projectors Transform the World We Know in Entertainment Venues and Other Large-Scale Environments

  • Review Date: May 1, 2020
  • MSRP:
  • Technology:

NEC NP-MC372X CLASSROOM PROJECTOR REVIEW

NEC NP-MC372X CLASSROOM PROJECTOR REVIEW

  • Review Date: March 31, 2020
  • MSRP:$509
  • Technology: 3LCD

CHRISTIE LWU530-APS Laser Projector Review

CHRISTIE LWU530-APS Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: March 16, 2020
  • MSRP:$2,499
  • Technology: 3LCD

Look Out Competition: It’s Fun Time! Epson Is Shipping Their First, Smart, Under $1000  Home Entertainment Laser Projector – HD Res, and 2000 lumens!

Look Out Competition: It’s Fun Time! Epson Is Shipping Their First, Smart, Under $1000 Home Entertainment Laser Projector – HD Res, and 2000 lumens!

  • Review Date: January 6, 2020
  • MSRP:
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Epson Home Cinema 3200 Home Theater Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 3200 Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: November 27, 2019
  • MSRP:$1,499
  • Technology: 3 LCD

2019 Holiday Guide To Seven Great Home Theater Projectors Under $2000

2019 Holiday Guide To Seven Great Home Theater Projectors Under $2000

  • Review Date: November 22, 2019
  • MSRP:
  • Technology:

2019 Holiday Guide To Five Great Home Theater Projectors Over $2000

2019 Holiday Guide To Five Great Home Theater Projectors Over $2000

  • Review Date: November 22, 2019
  • MSRP:
  • Technology:

Epson Pro Cinema 6050UB 4K Capable Home Theater Projector Review

Epson Pro Cinema 6050UB 4K Capable Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: November 15, 2019
  • MSRP:$3999
  • Technology: 3 LCD

Sony VPL-FHZ75 Business/Education Installation Projector: Our First-Look Review of Key Features and Capabilities

Sony VPL-FHZ75 Business/Education Installation Projector: Our First-Look Review of Key Features and Capabilities

  • Review Date: October 15, 2019
  • MSRP:$11,000
  • Technology: 3LCD

Panasonic PT-VMZ50 Laser Projector Review

Panasonic PT-VMZ50 Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: September 24, 2019
  • MSRP:$2499
  • Technology: 3LCD

BenQ HT5550 vs. Epson Home Cinema 5050UB Comparison Review

BenQ HT5550 vs. Epson Home Cinema 5050UB Comparison Review

  • Review Date: September 9, 2019
  • MSRP:
  • Technology:

Vankyo Leisure 3 Mini Projector: Our First-Look Review of Key Features and Capabilities

Vankyo Leisure 3 Mini Projector: Our First-Look Review of Key Features and Capabilities

  • Review Date: August 12, 2019
  • MSRP:$99.00
  • Technology: single-chip LCD

Sony’s Exceptional Laser Projector Line-up:  Mainstream and Affordable Models for auditoriums and classrooms, 4K Specialty Projectors for Simulation, Entertainment, more – and Great Picture Quality

Sony’s Exceptional Laser Projector Line-up: Mainstream and Affordable Models for auditoriums and classrooms, 4K Specialty Projectors for Simulation, Entertainment, more – and Great Picture Quality

  • Review Date: July 1, 2019
  • MSRP:
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NEC NP-P525UL Review: An Affordable 3LCD Laser Projector

NEC NP-P525UL Review: An Affordable 3LCD Laser Projector

  • Review Date: June 3, 2019
  • MSRP:$3099
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 5050UB Review – An Extremely 4K Capable Home Theater Projector

Epson Home Cinema 5050UB Review – An Extremely 4K Capable Home Theater Projector

  • Review Date: May 12, 2019
  • MSRP:$2999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson LightScene EV-100 Laser Projector Review

Epson LightScene EV-100 Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: May 8, 2019
  • MSRP:$2499
  • Technology: 3LCD

The Epson Pro Cinema 6050UB Has Arrived – Turns Out It Is Even Better!

The Epson Pro Cinema 6050UB Has Arrived – Turns Out It Is Even Better!

  • Review Date: May 7, 2019
  • MSRP:
  • Technology:

Meet the Epson Home Cinema 5050UB – This New Ultra Black Projector Raises the Bar

Meet the Epson Home Cinema 5050UB – This New Ultra Black Projector Raises the Bar

  • Review Date: May 1, 2019
  • MSRP:
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The Laser Projector Revolution is Upon Us – And Epson is  Leading the Charge

The Laser Projector Revolution is Upon Us – And Epson is Leading the Charge

  • Review Date: April 19, 2019
  • MSRP:
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Maxell MP-WU5503 Laser Education Projector Review

Maxell MP-WU5503 Laser Education Projector Review

  • Review Date: April 17, 2019
  • MSRP:$6299
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 5050UB – The Best Home Theater Projector Value Yet? – A First Look Review

Epson Home Cinema 5050UB – The Best Home Theater Projector Value Yet? – A First Look Review

  • Review Date: April 13, 2019
  • MSRP:$2999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Pro L1755UNL Commercial Laser Projector Review

Epson Pro L1755UNL Commercial Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: March 31, 2019
  • MSRP:$33,000
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson PowerLite 5520W Business/Education Projector Review

Epson PowerLite 5520W Business/Education Projector Review

  • Review Date: March 7, 2019
  • MSRP:$2199 street
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson’s HC4010 and PC4050 Take Off – Combining 4K Capabilities, Features and Value

Epson’s HC4010 and PC4050 Take Off – Combining 4K Capabilities, Features and Value

  • Review Date: January 15, 2019
  • MSRP:
  • Technology: 0

Epson PowerLite L400U Installation Laser Projector Review

Epson PowerLite L400U Installation Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: December 12, 2018
  • MSRP:$2499
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 4010/Pro Cinema 4050 4K Capable Home Theater Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 4010/Pro Cinema 4050 4K Capable Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: December 6, 2018
  • MSRP:$1999/$2399
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Pro Cinema 4050 First Look Review – 4K UHD with HDR

Epson Pro Cinema 4050 First Look Review – 4K UHD with HDR

  • Review Date: October 23, 2018
  • MSRP:$2,399
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Combines 4K Capabilities, Performance, Features with a Focus on Value

Epson Combines 4K Capabilities, Performance, Features with a Focus on Value

  • Review Date: October 21, 2018
  • MSRP:
  • Technology: 0

Epson PowerLite 1785W Wireless Portable Projector Review

Epson PowerLite 1785W Wireless Portable Projector Review

  • Review Date: October 13, 2018
  • MSRP:$899
  • Technology: 3 LCD

Epson PowerLite L610W Laser Projector Review

Epson PowerLite L610W Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: October 9, 2018
  • MSRP:$2599
  • Technology: 3 LCD

Sony VPL-FHZ61 Commercial Laser Projector Review

Sony VPL-FHZ61 Commercial Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: September 28, 2018
  • MSRP:$9000
  • Technology: 3LCD

InFocus IN2128HDx Business and Classroom Projector Review

InFocus IN2128HDx Business and Classroom Projector Review

  • Review Date: April 6, 2018
  • MSRP:$1847
  • Technology: DLP

Epson PowerLite 990U Projector Review

Epson PowerLite 990U Projector Review

  • Review Date: March 28, 2018
  • MSRP:$1079
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson PowerLite 675W Ultra Short Throw Classroom Projector Review

Epson PowerLite 675W Ultra Short Throw Classroom Projector Review

  • Review Date: March 23, 2018
  • MSRP:$1190
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson BrightLink 710Ui Interactive Laser Projector Review

Epson BrightLink 710Ui Interactive Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 1, 2018
  • MSRP:$3,499
  • Technology: 3LCD

Two Holiday Guides, Ten Great Home Projectors

Two Holiday Guides, Ten Great Home Projectors

  • Review Date: November 28, 2017
  • MSRP:
  • Technology: 0

Epson Home Cinema 2100 and 2150 Home Entertainment Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 2100 and 2150 Home Entertainment Projector Review

  • Review Date: November 16, 2017
  • MSRP:$899
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema LS100 Laser Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema LS100 Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: November 9, 2017
  • MSRP:$2999
  • Technology: 3LCD

NEC NP-PA653UL Business/Education Projector Review

NEC NP-PA653UL Business/Education Projector Review

  • Review Date: September 27, 2017
  • MSRP:$7,779
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 760HD First Look Review

Epson Home Cinema 760HD First Look Review

  • Review Date: September 18, 2017
  • MSRP:$549
  • Technology: 3LCD

Sony VPL-VW885ES 4K Home Theater Laser Projector Review

Sony VPL-VW885ES 4K Home Theater Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: September 6, 2017
  • MSRP:$24,995
  • Technology: 3 LCoS panels (SXRD)

Epson Home Cinema 2150 First Look Review

Epson Home Cinema 2150 First Look Review

  • Review Date: August 28, 2017
  • MSRP:
  • Technology: 0

Epson Home Cinema 2100 First Look Review

Epson Home Cinema 2100 First Look Review

  • Review Date: August 13, 2017
  • MSRP:
  • Technology: 0

Epson Home Cinema 4000 Home Theater Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 4000 Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: July 30, 2017
  • MSRP:$2199
  • Technology: 3LCD

Sony LaserLite VPL-PHZ10 Laser Projector Review

Sony LaserLite VPL-PHZ10 Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: April 13, 2017
  • MSRP:$5000
  • Technology: 3LCD

NEC NP-ME331W Portable Projector Review

NEC NP-ME331W Portable Projector Review

  • Review Date: March 24, 2017
  • MSRP:$699
  • Technology: 3LCD

The Astonishing Epson Pro Cinema 4040 Home Theater Projector – Review

The Astonishing Epson Pro Cinema 4040 Home Theater Projector – Review

  • Review Date: March 16, 2017
  • MSRP:$2699
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 3700 Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 3700 Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 14, 2017
  • MSRP:$1499
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson PowerLite 2265U Projector Review

Epson PowerLite 2265U Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 8, 2017
  • MSRP:$2299
  • Technology: 3LCD

Sony VPL-DW240 Projector – A Review

Sony VPL-DW240 Projector – A Review

  • Review Date: December 1, 2016
  • MSRP:$970
  • Technology: 3LCD

HT Projectors: Sony VPL-HW45ES vs Epson HC5040UB

HT Projectors: Sony VPL-HW45ES vs Epson HC5040UB

  • Review Date: September 24, 2016
  • MSRP:
  • Technology:

Epson Home Cinema 5040UB vs. JVC DLA-RS400U – A Comparison Review

Epson Home Cinema 5040UB vs. JVC DLA-RS400U – A Comparison Review

  • Review Date: September 22, 2016
  • MSRP:
  • Technology:

Sony VPL-HW45ES Home Theater Projector Review

Sony VPL-HW45ES Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: August 27, 2016
  • MSRP:$1999
  • Technology: SXRD (3)

Epson Home Cinema 5040UB, Pro Cinema 6040UB Home Theater Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 5040UB, Pro Cinema 6040UB Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: August 11, 2016
  • MSRP:$2699
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Pro G7905U Large Venue Projector Review

Epson Pro G7905U Large Venue Projector Review

  • Review Date: August 1, 2016
  • MSRP:$6499
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Powerlite Pro L1500, L1505 Laser Projector Review

Epson Powerlite Pro L1500, L1505 Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: July 8, 2016
  • MSRP:21999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson PowerLite W29 Projector Review

Epson PowerLite W29 Projector Review

  • Review Date: May 25, 2016
  • MSRP:$599
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson PowerLite 955WH Projector Review

Epson PowerLite 955WH Projector Review

  • Review Date: April 17, 2016
  • MSRP:899
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Pro Cinema 1985 W Projector Review

Epson Pro Cinema 1985 W Projector Review

  • Review Date: April 11, 2016
  • MSRP:2499
  • Technology: 3LCD

NEC UM352W Ultra Short Throw Projector Review

NEC UM352W Ultra Short Throw Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 15, 2016
  • MSRP:$1999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 1040 Home Theater Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 1040 Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 4, 2016
  • MSRP:799
  • Technology: 3LCD

BenQ HT3050 Home Theater Projector Review

BenQ HT3050 Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 3, 2016
  • MSRP:999
  • Technology: DLP

Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 1440 Projector Review

Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 1440 Projector Review

  • Review Date: December 28, 2015
  • MSRP:1699
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson EX7240 Pro Portable Projector Review

Epson EX7240 Pro Portable Projector Review

  • Review Date: December 7, 2015
  • MSRP:649.99
  • Technology: 3LCD

Sony VPL-FHZ65 Laser Projector Review

Sony VPL-FHZ65 Laser Projector Review

  • Review Date: October 22, 2015
  • MSRP:$15000
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 2040 and 2045 Projectors – A Review

Epson Home Cinema 2040 and 2045 Projectors – A Review

  • Review Date: September 16, 2015
  • MSRP:799
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson LS10000 vs JVC DLA-RS6710 – Two Awesome HT Projectors

Epson LS10000 vs JVC DLA-RS6710 – Two Awesome HT Projectors

  • Review Date: September 9, 2015
  • MSRP:
  • Technology: 0

Epson PowerLite Pro Z10005UNL Projector Review

Epson PowerLite Pro Z10005UNL Projector Review

  • Review Date: August 2, 2015
  • MSRP:28,999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Powerlite 97H Projector Review

Epson Powerlite 97H Projector Review

  • Review Date: June 22, 2015
  • MSRP:$549
  • Technology: 3LCD

NEC NP-PA521U Projector Review

NEC NP-PA521U Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 18, 2015
  • MSRP:$5799 + $749 for lens
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Brightlink Pro 1430Wi Projector Review

Epson Brightlink Pro 1430Wi Projector Review

  • Review Date: February 4, 2015
  • MSRP:2999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson PowerLite 1985WU Projector Review

Epson PowerLite 1985WU Projector Review

  • Review Date: January 4, 2015
  • MSRP:1999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Sony VPL-CH375 Projector Review

Sony VPL-CH375 Projector Review

  • Review Date: November 25, 2014
  • MSRP:2999
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Home Cinema 3500 Home Theater Projector Review

Epson Home Cinema 3500 Home Theater Projector Review

  • Review Date: October 30, 2014
  • MSRP:1699
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson Pro Cinema LS10000 Laser Home Theater Projector – Review

Epson Pro Cinema LS10000 Laser Home Theater Projector – Review

  • Review Date: September 9, 2014
  • MSRP:7999
  • Technology: 3LCD on Quartz (LCoQ)

Hitachi CP-TW2503 Projector Review

Hitachi CP-TW2503 Projector Review

  • Review Date: August 27, 2014
  • MSRP:1999 (street price)
  • Technology: 3LCD

Epson BrightLink 595Wi Projector Review

Epson BrightLink 595Wi Projector Review

  • Review Date: August 9, 2014
  • MSRP:2399
  • Technology: 3LCD

About 3LCD Projectors

The 3-Chip 3LCD projector contains an advanced technology that splits the light from the projector lamp, into 3 beams using mirrors. Each beam passes through a different LCD panel, one with a red, one with a green, and one with a blue filter. The three color images are combined using a prism of dichroic glass, creating a full-color image consisting of millions of colors.

These vibrant images pass through a projector lens to display a dazzling picture. Fundamentally, 3LCD projectors targeted for the home theater market, are similar to those for business and education (and government and…), but with different feature sets that make them more suitable for one application than another.

3LCD projectors are known for rich saturated colors. And that brings us to a brief

There use to be no reliable metric for determining true color output, until the 3LCD Group has started promoting CLO as a new standard for the industry. Color Light Output, or CLO, is a scientific measurement developed similar to the specification of White Light Output.

The reason many consider this important is that single chip DLP devices normally have a spinning color wheel with color filters, and a white (clear) filter. This allows a DLP system to produce a brighter level of white, then of any pure color like true red, green, yellow…

In reality, since everyone normally measures white, this gives a bigger advantage to DLP projectors that use larger and larger clear slices. But, there’s a price to pay. A pure white, might appear 50% or conceivably 100% brighter than a pure red. That would change the intended image noticeably. On a bright white background spreadsheet, “bright” pure colors like red, green… would seem muted – even overwhelmed by large bright areas.

Is this a huge thing? We don’t believe so, but a CLO standard would at least provide additional, and somewhat significant info to those choosing projectors. In our reviews, we have often mentioned that “DLP projectors need to be about 1/3 brighter when in ambient light situations, than LCD projectors, due to the colors not being as bright as the whites” (ambient light is like expanding the clear slice in that DLP projector – it does the same thing – washes out colors).

The point that needs to be made is that a 2000 lumen 3LCD projector in, say, a typical conference room with some fluorescent lights on, will hold up as well overall as a DLP projector claiming 2500 lumens. Its whites wouldn’t be as bright, but bright colors would actually be a bit brighter on the 3LCD projector. This is just one type of common trade-off. 3LCD designs don’t use a spinning filter system, so there is also no rainbow effect that affects some people.

3LCD technology was developed by Epson in the 1980s and is used in over half of the projectors manufactured today.  Almost every major projector brand has adopted the 3LCD 3-chip technology, for at least part of their projector line-up.

The panels themselves continue to evolve and improve, with frequent major performance improvements. Contrast has improved dramatically, as has panel life.

The pixel structure of the panels themselves are now less noticeable, and essentially no longer of concern at any of the higher resolutions. As noted above, 3LCD designs typically produce an image 25 – 40% brighter than a DLP projector using a similar wattage lamp, making 3LCD projectors more energy efficient.

3LCD projectors are as previously mentioned the “dominant form of life” in business, education, and home projection. That’s not likely to change anytime soon, although each technology has its own advantages.

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