Epson's MovieMate 60 – the perfect stocking stuffer? Sony VPL-VW85, LG CF181D

Greetings and happy holidays to all!Well, no rest for the wicked, as they say.   I received two more projectors in, to complete the reviews of, by year end.  Plus below, I’ll let you know what else is coming shortly.The MovieMate 60, Epson’s newest, low cost, all-in-one projector, and Sony’s VPL-VW85 home theater projectors are the two that arrived.  Mike is picking them both up, for measurements and calibration.My plan is to have the MovieMate 60 review up Tuesday night, that should give everyone who thinks it’s a great stocking stuffer, or gift under their tree, time to run out and buy one, if it sounds good.  BTW, the Moviemate 60 is smaller than I remember from CEDIA, it really is surprisingly small.  I like that!  Also,  it comes with a nice portable, padded, soft carry case.  Can’t tell you any more, as I haven’t fired it up yet.I’m also very looking forward to the arrival of the Sony VPL-VW85.  From discussing with Sony back at CEDIA, the VW85 should at least close the gap (by my measure) between Sony and JVC.  From what I’ve seen, JVC will still have the advantage in black levels, but there are other important things to consider, if you are comparing projectors when black level performance is very very good, on one projector and excellent on another.  We shall see.  My goal is to publish between Christmas and New Years, but ideally closer to Christmas.LG: OK, lighten up!   I’m getting several emails a day asking when I’m going to review the LG.  So far, I still don’t even have a good working contact there, although I’m trying.  I think they all took December off.  Actually it took any number of calls just to find out which division (LGCommercial) is handling it.  Between now and then, you’ll just have to get by, and read between the lines of that review that’s been published by “those other guys”.I hope to finally track LG down, but many manufacturers are closed for one or both holiday weeks.   At worst, I’ll see them at CES (2nd week of January) and hopefully have a review unit in, before month end.I basically will be telling them the truth – if I can’t get one in by end of January, they’ll miss my cut-off, to be considered in our major 1080p Projector Comparison Report, (by far our most widely read document), and at a shot at our annual Best In Class awards.Hopefully, that will motivate them.  It tends to motivate other manufacturers.BTW, JVC is working on finding me an DLA-RS35 for review, and failing that, they’ll send me a DLA-RS15 after the first of the year.The JVC DLA-RS35 is identical (for all practical purposes) to the JVC HD990, and the DLA-RS15, near identical to the JVC HD550 projector.OK, I’ll be putting together a short blog on the MovieMate 60, probably on Sunday – the usual “first look”  (I’ve got 30 relatives to deal with tomorrow (the 19th).Late January, or, more likely early February, look for reviews of Epson’s newest 720p projector, the 705HD – I haven’t reviewed a 720p projector in quite some time, as most manufacturers have passed on introducing new 720p projectors this fall.  It’s a dirty job, but somebody has to review the true “entry level” projectors.  And it looks like I’m that somebody.GREAT NEWS!    After CES, Screen Innovations is shipping me their 1.4 (relative) gain Black Diamond “black” projector screen.  They make two versions – 1.4 and .8 gain.  After much discussion with them, we all decided that the 1.4 makes more sense, because it offers almost all of the advantage, but is a lot brighter.   If sufficiently dazzled, it’s very likely I’ll ask them for a .8 for review as well.Oh, there are plenty more projectors still on the list, but, above, I think,  are the most “critical” projectors to review “sooner, rather than later”.ONe more item.  No, nevermind – it deserves it’s own blog – in about 10 minutes. -art

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