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Old 01-14-2008   #1
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Default LCD VsDLP projectors

I was talking to a coworker yesterday and he told me that he went with a projector for his HTS(Home Theater System). he compared prices for plasmas and the projector w/ a screen and said the projector was a better value. Which got me thinking and researching projectors and screens. For the money it seems that a projector would give me a bigger picture. But,what I don't get is the difference between LCD and DLP projectors? what are the pros and cons of both, LCD vs DLP? what does it mean when a projector has one or three chips? Which gives a better picture? Is there a screen that is better with one and not the other? How much can screens go for? Do I need to get the projector calibrated? Is that something I can do myself? is that something that should be done by a pro/the store tech that I buy the projector from? Should I expect to pay for the calibration or is done free since I bought said projector? If I have to pay for calibration, how much can I expect to pay? does it need calibration every time I change the bulb? Can I change the bulb myself or is that something that should be left to a pro's? Sorry for so many ?'s. thanks
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Old 01-18-2008   #2
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Default Re: LCD VsDLP projectors

As to LCD vs. DLP, I wish I could answer that question. I have recently started looking at projectors myself as a viable option, they can be much more affordable for $$$/inch of screen size.

I know that one of DLP's problems can be what is known as the "rainbow" effect. If you are not aware of how DLP works, there is a color wheel that has the three primary colors on it (sometimes more) including a clear section for greyscale that spins in front of a DMD chip, which is what generates the images and has the lamp behind it. If the frame rate is supposed to be 60 Hz, then the wheel spins at 4 times that speed (note: some wheels have more colors and may be rbgrbg etc... in which it will have to spin faster). So... for every "refresh" or cycle, the projector splashes a green image, a red image, a blue image, and then the fourth for the grayscale at different times (it does this too quickly for our brains to decipher so we perceive an image in which all of the colors have been combined). Thus, at any given point in time there is an image on the screen with only one color, this can cause the illusion of a rainbow on the screen for some people, but not all. The "three chip" projectors that you have heard of try to alleviate this by having a separate DMD chip for each primary color, a prism is generally used to split the light from the lamp, the three primary colors then go through the three separate chips, and is then recombined before going through the lens, thus all of the colors are combined on the screen at the same time. With regard to image quality on one vs. three chips, they should be the same, its just with the three chips you are not going to have the rainbow effect. The disadvantage of having a three chip projector is the possibility of the prism going out of alignment when you change the lamp, which is something you can generally do yourself. I would just recommend wearing latex gloves while doing it so you don't get any oil from your skin on the lamp.
More info on DLP can be found at this Wiki, which I found to be most informative:

LCD supposedly doesn't have this problem, but I don't know what the advantages/disadvantages are of LCD.

I am personally going to start with a single chip DLP projector for cost reasons, I want to invest most of my money in the audio, and get a nice screen as well, then I can upgrade projectors later. Also, not everybody experiences these rainbows, so... if I don't then I luck out :-)

With regards to screens, they run the gamut, you can essentially spend as little or as much as you like. In my research I have found that Carada makes some excellent screens that are very reasonably priced. In terms of build quality and features, they are great for the money, which is what an internet shopper like myself looks for. All of their screens have a black border to absorb any light that may extend past the boundary of the screens, also they have screens with different gain levels, which is cool. Before doing projector research, I didn't even realize that a screen could boost or reduce the gain of the image from a projector!!! Their top line of fixed screens are at an awesome price point, for a 100" diagonal you are looking at around $581.87 if you want a smaller screen the price goes down from their, and up it goes up (duh).

In terms of calibrating the projector, I am not a pro, but I am a DIY kind of guy, and have a hard time paying someone to change my oil, let alone set up my home theater system. What matters to me is that the system looks and sounds good to ME, and besides, I look at this as a hobby, and want to do it myself. If the projector has sufficient menu settings to adjust color setting etc (something to consider when looking at different models)... then you can do it yourself. However, if you have the money, you can pay someone to do it. You may want to contact your local high end A/V store if you are interested in having them come out, as I have no idea what something like this would cost.

Hope I was of help, and look forward to seeing what other people have to say on the subject.
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Old 01-21-2008   #3
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Default Re: LCD VsDLP projectors

Thanks for the reply! That was very helpful indeed. I was talking to someone who has a HT set-up in his house but I didn't have time to get all the details(my ride decided he was bored with all the tech talk so he wanted to leave). I too am a DIY person. I like to do as much as possible also. That way if something needs to be done or something gives me trouble I can troubleshoot it.
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Old 01-23-2008   #4
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Default Re: LCD VsDLP projectors

DLP: Single Chip DLP comes with the problem of the "Rainbow Effect," which can cause viewing fautige from certion viewers (I'm one of them, more than 30 minutes and I get a headache). 3 Chip DLPs do not have this problem.

LCD: ok contrast rations, ok color reproduction. Likely best bang for the buck.

SXRD: good contrast ratios, pretty decent color reproduction. SONY is the only brand that makes them.

HD-ILA: superior contrast ratios, superior colors, right now the king of under $10K projectors. They have two one streets for around $4500 the other around $7500. JVC is the only brand that makes them.

As for screens if you want to save money hire people that experienced with GOO SCREENs. Experienced GOO SCREEN installers can provide you a rather nice screen for around $400. Don't pay much more than that.

I'd stay away from Caradas and other online brands. I've seen these side by side with other screen manufacturers. There is no contest. Their price point seems to make a lot of internet buyers happy and thus their popularity. The best bang for the buck screen manufacturer is likely Da-Lite.

That's an older review of the different screen types. Very little has changed as you can imagine.

A 100" setup that would rival the PQ of a Pioneer Elite Kuros 60 inch set will likely cost you around $6700 installed. This would consist of a JVC RS-1 and a 100" Da-Lite screen plus an HDMI cable and installation. Which is about $800 less than the plasma.

A 100" setup using a Mitsubishi HC4900 (the projector I'd suggest for less expensive installations) and a Da-Lite screen installed will likely run you around $4000 or less.

For me the JVC is worth every penny over the less expensive models.
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Old 01-23-2008   #5
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Default Re: LCD VsDLP projectors

thank you Lotus for your reply. this is great info to remember when purchasing a projector and screen. This is also great info to keep in mind when the salesperson is trying to push something that may not be what I'm looking for but rather that's what the push of the day is.
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Old 05-23-2008   #6
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Default Re: LCD VsDLP projectors

Originally Posted by rolexdaytona View Post
thank you Lotus for your reply. this is great info to remember when purchasing a projector and screen. This is also great info to keep in mind when the salesperson is trying to push something that may not be what I'm looking for but rather that's what the push of the day is.
Hi friend.
Certainly I agree with you. Really it's a great information to keep in mind while purchasing a projector or screen.
Thanks a lot for this.
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