InFocus ScreenPlay 7210Home Theater Projector
June 6, 2005,
During the past few years, 1280x720 DLP projectors have delivered ever-increasing performance at lower and lower prices. Now, with the latest projectors featuring Texas Instruments' DarkChip3 DLP chip, the process continues - and the InFocus Screenplay 7210 is in the starting line-up.
Specifications. 1100 ANSI lumens, 2800:1 contrast, native 16:9 widescreen format, 1280x720 resolution DLP chip with a 5x seven-segment color wheel.
Compatibility. HDTV 1080i, 720p, 576p, 576i, 480p, 480i, and computer resolutions up to SXGA (1280x1024). Full NTSC / PAL / SECAM.
Lens and Throw Distance. 1.25:1 manual zoom/focus lens. Throws a 100" diagonal image from 12.1' to 15.1', depending on zoom.
Lamp Life. 3,000 hours; 2,000 hours in high power mode
Connection Panel. One composite video, two S-Video, two sets of standard YPbPr component video inputs, one 15-pin VGA input that support YPbPr/RGB, one M1-DA port with HDCP, one D5 video, 2 12V relays, and one D-sub 15-pin RS-232 port.
Installation Options. Table mount, rear shelf mount, ceiling mount.
Warranty. Two years, 90 days for lamp.
The Screenplay 7210 has many options that can be used to adjust the projector's lumen output; set for maximum brightness it can approach its stated 1100 lumen ceiling. However, it outputs about 400 ANSI lumens once optimized for video (lamp standard, gamma set to "film", white peaking off, with the color temperature set to 6500K). Combined with its high contrast performance, this is enough light output to easily drive the image up to 120" without any substantial loss of quality.
Contrast on the Screenplay 7210 is excellent, making even the darkest scenes easy on the eyes. Shadow details pop. However, blacks are not as solid as they can be with the DarkChip3. We would have preferred a bit deeper black level. Dark areas of the image also tend to show a substantial amount of dithering, which can become distracting in some cases.
Colors are accurate and natural, with realistic fleshtones. Saturation as a whole can seem slightly lackluster at times, but in most situations the ScreenPlay 7210's color performance was excellent.
One of the 7210's strong points is the new Faroudja FLI2310 DCDi chipset. As a result of this chip, general image quality is improved on all interlaced signals. Composite video in particular looks better than it has in a long time, and with minimal deinterlacing artifacts.
Scaling of standard definition sources is outstanding. The resulting image is crisp, with sharp edge definition and no loss of detail. If you are thinking of using an upconverting DVD player--think twice. You might try switching the DVD player's output between standard definition and upscaled 720p to see which image appeals to you more. But don't be surprised if the 7210's internal processing delivers the best results.
The 7210 really shines with high definition signals due to its native 720p resolution. Unscaled HDTV 720p signals are life-like, and create the illusion of the screen being a "window". As one should expect, 1080i signals don't look quite as good as 720p due to compression and the nature of the interlaced format. However the 7210's scaling is excellent, so fuzziness is minimized.
We had a small problem with what appeared to be RF interference. After speaking to InFocus, we were told that the 7210 may be experiencing some ground loop feedback. The way to correct for this was to purchase a 3-prong to 2-prong AC adapter, which cut out the grounding loop and hence removed most of the artifact.