Posted on November 13, 2013 By Art Feierman
Here’s where the two projectors become not necessarily better or worse, but definitely different. Properly set up, the Panasonic provides a really good, very natural looking picture. By comparison, the 6500UB is perhaps a touch less natural – less film-like, than the PT-AE3000, but its picture is more dynamic looking, more “wow” factor. Where does that extra “pop and wow” come from? I attribute it primarily to two things: The better black levels, and the extra brightness of the projector.
When I watch the two projectors side by side, each projecting about a 50 inch diagonal image, my eyes are drawn to the Home Cinema 6500UB. The Panasonic just looks a little dull by comparison. And that’s with the Epson running in its low lamp mode compared to the Panasonic at full lamp. (That’s necessary for the two to appear roughly the same brightness.)
One could argue that the PT-AE3000’s posses the technically more film-like image of the two, but I think it’s hard to argue with the better black levels and more dazzling image of the Epson.
This is one area where the Epson Home Cinema 6500UB shows a distinct advantage. While you can calibrate any of the many modes of both projectors, when it comes to comparing the “best” modes the Epson is significantly brighter. This allows for a larger screen, or some extra brightness on the same sized screen. More brightness makes for a real difference. On medium and bright scenes, for example, more brightness lets the Epson shine on sunny scenes, so that the sunlight on objects doesn’t look muted. Alternately, it allows the Epson to deal with a little more ambient light.
When it comes to brightest modes, the Epson Home Cinema 6500UB is even more significantly brighter than the Panasonic PT-AE3000. Even it its low lamp mode, the Epson has more muscle than the Panasonic projector at full power. Want to watch a football game with a fair amount of ambient light? The Epson has a pretty dramatic advantage!
Both projectors are very reasonably sharp, but definitely not the sharpest out there. Of course there are sharpness controls, but once adjusted to limit visible oversharpening, I still find the Epson to be a tad sharper. This is another area, though, where the two are so close that any difference is a minor point.
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