Epson PowerLite Pro Z8000WUNL
Large Venue Projector
January 15, 2010
Professional Features. This Z8000 has been designed with both the integrator and rental/staging professional in mind. A pair of large, convenient handles atop the case makes lifting easier and safer for one or two people. The center lens design is convenient for both fixed and portable alignment with the screen. It nicely eliminates an annoyance that is familiar to most installers: having to offset a ceiling mount relative to screen center. But plentiful lens shift is available to deal with off-axis situations as well. Many mid-venue projectors offer lens shift that is asymmetrical vertically; that is, more lens shift is available up than down, or vice versa. On the Epson, available lens shift is an equal 70% of image height up or down, and 20% of width left or right. This is certainly not unique to this projector; for example, a 6500-lumen 1-chip DLP projector that is available from Sanyo or rebranded from Christie offers +/- 67% vertical and +/- 40% horizontal lens shift. Of course, one would hope to never need a 40% horizontal shift!
We were gratified to find that the focus, zoom and lens shift functions can be addressed with commands from the control system in discrete and repeatable steps. This means that the projector can be remotely returned to a preset screen alignment even when mounted on a ceiling lift or rotator that is difficult to access.
The dual-lamp light engine provides a measure of redundancy at important events. Changing from Normal to Eco lamp mode does not switch off a lamp, but rather appears to reduce the voltage to both in order to extend lamp life and lower the power consumption and fan noise. However, if one lamp fails, the other one will continue to operate until there is an opportunity to replace the bad lamp.
Resolution and Color Rendition. The Z8000's native 1920 x 1200 WUXGA resolution is a real asset; it will handle almost any source you can throw at it without downscaling. This is a 16:10 aspect ratio which matches the format of many laptops today. When projecting an HD 1080 source, the image is not scaled; it is a true pixel-for-pixel 1080p raster with some extra pixel lines unused. We found the small black area at the top and bottom of the image to be very well masked; the unused pixels were lit with a measured 40 lumens which was nearly unnoticeable unless the room is well darkened.