November 2, 2010
Sharp has upgraded its line of XGA projectors with its new PG-D2510X which is street priced at $713. The updates include (a) an additional dual-purpose VGA connector that serves as an extra computer/composite video input or as a monitor pass through, and (b) a significantly longer lamp life. This 2,500-lumen projector is well suited for the classroom and the conference room, and at 6.2 pounds, it ranks as one of the lightest (and smallest) projectors in its class. It is also one of just a few projectors in its price range that allows color adjustment of computer images, and it offers some presenter conveniences like audio pass through and a highlighting function that extend its versatility.
Presenters will find the PG-D2510X a nice fit for medium-size venues. In more intimate surroundings, the fan noise may be distracting to those seated near the projector. Also, although high brightness is usually a plus, it can cause eyestrain in low ambient light conditions often found in small rooms. So, you might look for a projector with a little less horsepower if you usually present in close proximity to your audience, but if you are regularly faced with unshaded windows or larger rooms where the audience can get some separation from the projector, the PG-D2510X is a good choice.
Brightness and Uniformity: It is rare when a projector exceeds its brightness specification, but in Presentation mode our test sample put up 2,615 ANSI lumens. Standard and Game modes were not far behind at 1,710 lumens while Movie and sRGB modes checked in at 1,010 and 980 lumens, respectively. Brightness uniformity was measured at 76% with the highest brightness in the best location . . . the center of the image. The Eco lamp setting reduced brightness by 26% in all modes.
Connections: With the exception of HDMI and RJ-45 connections, the rear panel of the PG-D2510X accommodates most other signals you are likely to encounter. Video input is handled by RCA jacks (composite video), an S-video connector, and one mode of the dual-purpose VGA connector (component video). Computers may be connected via one or both VGA connectors depending on whether you have assigned the second VGA connector as your monitor pass through. Video and computer inputs have individual audio input jacks, and there is an audio output jack as well.
Compatibility: Computer signals from VGA to UXGA are scaled up or compressed to fit the PG-D2510X's native XGA resolution. Video formats accommodated range from 480i to 1080p/60 . . . a step up from the 1080i of many projectors in the same class.
Image Size and Position: The centerline of the lens is 2.5" below the bottom of a 100" image. For a small audience sitting close to the screen, this is a good offset for tabletop placement, but for a larger audience, you may need to make an image adjustment by raising the front of the projector. An elevator-style front foot tilts the projector vertically when extended, and the right rear screw-in foot may be raised or lowered to compensate for any horizontal tilt of the projection surface. There is ±40° of vertical electronic keystone correction available if image distortion occurs.
Preset modes: Preset modes for particular room conditions range from Presentation (brightest image) to Standard and Game (best saturation) to Movie (best color rendition). There are also Blackboard and Whiteboard modes with color compensation to make images look more natural on those surfaces.
Image Quality: Computer images are well saturated and crisp, and small fonts are easily readable even with full keystone correction. B/W photos look good in sRGb mode, but overall the dynamic range is limited by the PG-D2510X's 1,100:1 contrast ratio which is relatively low for a DLP projector.
The low contrast ratio shows up in video mode with either highlights or black levels somewhat muted, depending on the contrast setting. Color saturation and accuracy are good, and skin tones are quite natural in Movie mode.
Placement Flexibility: The PG-D2510X's 1.2:1 zoom capability gives you a modest amount of projection distance variation for a particular image size. For example, to project a 100" diagonal image, the projector is about 12½ feet from the screen and can shift about ±15" and maintain that image diagonal.
Warranty: Sharp offers a 3-year warranty on parts and labor for the PG-D2510X. The lamp is covered for 90 days from the date of purchase.