|Optoma HD20 DLP Projector Review|
|Home Theater Front Projectors DLP Projectors|
|Written by Mike Flacy|
|Saturday, 15 May 2010|
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With the roll out of Optoma’s HD20 DLP home projector last year, the reality of a 1080p projector lower than $1000 was finally realized. As Blu-ray is rapidly growing in popularity, there’s no reason that home theater gurus with growing collections of stunning 1080p transfers need to hold off on replacing that old 720p projector. The Optoma HD20 attempts to meet that need with 1080p output, 4000:1 contrast, and 1700 ANSI lumens. The retail MSRP of the unit is $999.99 and can be found slightly cheaper around the web.
If you have used an Optoma projector before, the menu system is unchanged from previous models. There are five preset picture modes including User controlled, Reference, Bright, Photo and Cinema. Switching between them requires a bit of lag time to reset the screen, but it’s not overly annoying. For more advanced video calibration, you can dive in to noise reduction, gamma controls and color temperature selection. Within the menu system, you can also utilize overscan, edge mask, image AI and a variety of other modifications. Image AI, while useful, cranks the fan noise into high gear, so beware if the projector is mounted near your audience.
Placement of the HD20 is somewhat simplified over previous Optoma models, but positioning may seem limited. The 1.2:1 manual zoom lens has no lens shift and the throw angle is fixed. It works well as a ceiling mounted unit or a coffee table placement. I was using an 80” screen and had about two feet of leeway in where I could place the coffee table. By the way, the lamp inside the unit is rated at 3000 hours in high lamp mode and 4000 hours in low lamp mode, a solid rating for such an inexpensive unit. Replacement blubs hover in the $300 range, but I have seen them as low as $250 on some sites.