Posted on November 12, 2013 By Art Feierman
Mike, Tony, and I all have different light meters. We know that Mike’s meter generates the least bright numbers, that’s followed by Tony’s. We’ve measured the light meters against each other. For purposes of this chart, and your other comparisons of measured brightness, we are Increasing Mike’s measured lumens by 11% (rounded) in order to have “apples” to “apples” brightness comparisons. For the BenQ that I reviewed, I’ve made the necessary adjustment for my meter, in the review as well, so that number will match the ones in this chart. Only Mike’s numbers will be different in the chart, compared to the individual reviews. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Last year, the brightest claimed projector in our review was a Sanyo claiming 5500 lumens. This year – there is no Sanyo. That’s right, there is no Sanyo anymore. Sanyo was purchased a couple+ years ago by Matsushita (Panasonic). Home theater projectors disappeared first from Sanyo, but at this point, the Sanyo name is simply disappearing completely from the projector marketplace.
Fear not, competition (which drives innovation and pricing) remains stronger than ever. More and more Taiwanese / Chinese (mostly) companies have stepped up, and launched larger, and larger projector lines these past few years. Consider that companies like Acer, Vivitek, Casio, all have large projector lineups, yet none of these players was even thought of for projectors until 2-3 years ago. And there are plenty more.
This section is, again, updated repeat from the previous year’s report. The purpose is to discuss the concept whether two projectors with different technology – LCD and single chip DLP, measuring the same number of lumens, are really truly equally as bright, or perform equally in terms of color. This is for those curious, definitely not critical reading for buying a projector.
Over two years ago, the 3LCD Group, a trade organization for the LCD manufacturers and projector manufacturers that build LCD projectors, started talking up the creation of a new standard, essentially “Color Lumens.” They tell me that this standard is on the way. The two largest sellers of LCD projectors in the US, now both are quoting Color Lumens, and White Lumens separately (on their data sheets, etc.)
Basically we’ve all been measuring projectors by measuring white, with the common reference being ANSI Lumens, which measures white.. The 3LCD folks point is that differently designed projectors all producing, say 2000 lumens of white, may perform dramatically different when it comes to color, and some would more faithfully
There are valid points there, and some practical trade-offs to discuss.
The 3LCD folks’ argument is aimed squarely at the single chip DLP projectors, or at least virtually all of the ones that are not built for home theater. The short version – well, as short as I write, is that single chip business and education DLP projectors use a spinning color wheel, and in almost all cases, they have Red,Green,Blue, and Clear (which we will call white, since white light is what passes through it), some have additional segments, such as yellow, but the underlying issue relates to that clear slice. I’ll use the same example as was in last year’s report:
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