Visit our other websites:    Consumer IT    On CE    eSP    Mobile Channels    rAVe Europe    Digital Signage News EMEA    iChannels

European Custom Installer

System Integration for the Connected Home

Projection and Screens

Panasonic Releases PT-A HD Projectors

  • PDF

Panasonic aims for both ends of the home projector market with its new Home Theatre Projection series.

The silver PT-AX200 targets gamers and features 720p resolution, Game Mode (reduces response time down to 5ms and boosts color saturation), 2000 lumens, and 2x optical zoom.

The black 1080p PT-AE2000E appeals to the “If-you-have-to-ask-about-price-you-can’t-afford-this” crowd with 1500 lumens, a 16,000:1 contrast ratio and three HDMI inputs.

Most appealing are several pro installation/configuration features like a 100% vertical lens shift when ceiling-mounted, split-screen adjustment mode and waveform monitor.

Go Panasonic Home Theatre

Diminutive Only in Size, SIM2’s C3X 1080

  • PDF

It has the same, bright red colour you can expect to find in an Italian world-class sports car. It can even produce the vision of speed and fear that accompany a Formula 1 race. But it’ll cost far less than a Ferrari: the world’s most compact three chip DLP projector.

Equipped with a 250 watt UHP lamp and three of the latest Texas Instruments’ 0,95” 1080p DLP chipsets, the Grand Cinema C3X 1080 video projector built by Sim2 Multimedia is a must have for those who love to sell the combo of modern design (high-gloss sculpted cabinet designed by Giorgio Revoldini) and state-of-the-art technology.

Weighing only 11 kilograms, this unit has a max resolution of 1920 x 1080, a 16 bit video processor and can reproduce FULL HD videos. The combination of  three-chip SIM2 design with improved all-glass optics in SIM2’s proprietary ALPHAPATH™ light engine to form a system able to deliver full-HD, yields a contrast ratio of >10,000:1, typically.

Full-depth 10-bit video processing, with HD scaling and deinterlacing capabilities, maintains 1080p/24fps full-HD purity under actual content-playback conditions, and does much to upgrade the delivered perceived quality of lesser formats.

SIM2’s newly-developed color-management software is available and permits installers and calibrators to match each projector precisely to its home theater environment (with almost total control over color, and white-point coordinates, gamma correction, and more to improve real-world installed performance.)

Go The Little Red Machine That Could

End Those Escalating Claims for Contrast?

  • PDF

A number of voices are being raised about the escalation in the contrast wars in Projector-land.

Here we’d like to share the observations of Greg Jeffreys, Director of Paradigm Audio Visual Ltd. in UK:

“Is a usable contrast figure one which tells you how either bright or dark the image can be in separate images (i.e. the on/off type figure), or one that tells you how a projector & specific lens can render blacks and whites on the same image (i.e. the ANSI [checker board] contrast figure)? The former is theoretical in that has nothing do with delivered image quality, nothing to do with how the remainder of the light path and the lens will affect the image we view. The latter is surely the information needed in real life.

On our initial committee work in 2005 for the project to develop the quality standard for specifying and assessing projected images (now subsumed into the InfoComm project, on whose new Steering Committee I sit), we found the following:

  • That most normal LCD projectors produce approx 30–60:1 ANSI. Even now it’s hard to find any projector over 200:1
  • That an image quality of from 20:1 was agreed to be ‘good’ unanimously by the committee, and that 10:1 was even quite acceptable
  • That most front projection images in normal meeting rooms were likely to produce in the range of 2-10:1 ANSI contrast. (Rear projection can typically produce 20-200:1)
  • That, with the exception of darkened, cinema-type environments, front projection contrast on normal screens is entirely a function of how much ambient light falls on the screen
  • That it seems likely most projectors are assessed by their manufacturers with all settings on/near maximum and that the ANSI test methodology of setting the projector up to a grey scale from an external pattern generator is not generally observed. (The whole grey scale thing seems to somehow be ignored with projected images. Why? It’s recognised as important with other displays.)

You can find in reference works statements that, from a given adaptation level, if the eye sees something 30 x brighter it will perceive it as white, and 30 x darker, as black. (30 x 30 = 900, presumably one provenance for the old cine standard of 1000:1??). If you printed this page out, you’d find it to be very acceptable contrast – but would measure it probably somewhere around 50:1.

Therefore there’s a need for wholesale recalibration of our expectations on contrast. Projectors produce much less contrast than these inflated figures imply. But projected images don’t need numbers with all those zeros! There’s a common ground to be found in the middle.

Surely consultants and specifiers need to start asking projector manufacturers a very simple question: ‘What is the contrast ratio of a specific projector fitted with a specific lens, according to ANSI (IT7.228-1997) methodology, with the device adjusted to the prescribed external grey scale?’ Now that’s a number we can work with!

I attach the latest draft of the best practice paper as it’s not yet uploaded to our page on the InfoComm site, although you’ll find the spreadsheets there.

This is not aimed at either Epson in general or projector manufacturers in general as they have to live in the real world. If one manufacturer claims numbers on the basis of a certain, albeit debatable, methodology, it’s must be impossible for others not to follow. After all, the end user has little or no idea about this – it’s a simple question of many ‘bangs per buck’.

If you ask a manufacturer privately why they don’t say what their ANSI contrast figures are, they’ll often reply ‘well you never asked’! Fair enough, but what if someone did start asking for this publicly…?”

Go Paradigm Audio Visual Ltd

For a draft of the Best Practice Paper, email ECI and we’ll forward it on.


  • PDF

Projector manufacturers at CEDIA introduced new projectors based on 3LCD technology, including:

Epson: Introduced its PowerLite Pro Cinema 1080 UB featuring native 1080p HD resolution for theater-quality high-def images. The Pro Cinema 1080 UB offers a contrast ratio of up to 50,000:1 (Editor’s Note: see article above) and new UltraBlack technology for image quality and deep blacks. This projector has two HDMI 1.3 inputs and OptiCinema lens with 2.1x optical zoom for flexible set-up (and projects a 100" widescreen image from only 9.8'.).

Sanyo: Sanyo showed its PLV-Z2000- a full 1080p HD resolution projector with enhanced 3D color management system and two HDMI 1.3 inputs. Features include an advanced lens shift system with short throw lens and wide-range zoom capability for maximum installation flexibility. The PLV-Z2000 offers 1,200 lumen output and 15,000:1 contrast, a wide aperture, and low-noise fan for super-quiet operation.

Mitsubishi: Introducing its newest true 1080p resolution home theater projector, HC6000 replaces the HC5000 with enhanced HD features. The HC6000's auto iris function has quicker black to light imaging and increased contrast ratio to 13,000:1, along with two HDMI connectors and Silicon Optix's EmmyR award winning HQV high performance video processor.

Go Epson, Mitsubishi or Sanyo