NEW PRODUCT ANNOUNCEMENT

OPTOMA UHD60
Native 4K Home Theater Projector

Evan Powell, January 5, 2017

Today Optoma unveiled the new Optoma UHD60, which at $2,799 will be the first home theater projector to offer native 4K (3840x2160) resolution below $3,000.

Optoma UHD60 4K Home Theater Projector


Product Status

Optoma is showing a pre-production sample of the UHD60 in Las Vegas this week in conjunction with CES. At this time the initial ship date is anticipated for late in the second quarter. Specs have not been finalized or published, so unfortunately there is nothing to report in that regard. Even the configuration of the rear connection panel may not yet be cast in stone, so posting an image of the panel on the sample they were showing might be misleading.

All that can be said at the moment is that the UHD60 will feature Texas Instrument's new 4K DLP chip, HDR10, a built-in zoom lens with lens shift, and a high pressure lamp for illumination. They are targeting for a zoom of about 1.5x and a max ANSI lumen rating in the ballpark of 2500 to 3000.

With that said, the demo of the UHD60 was set up on a 120" diagonal screen. With this size image the pre-production sample shows excellent color depth, crystal clear detail, and sparkling contrast. So despite the lack of spec detail, judging from the picture and price alone, the UHD60 looks like it has the potential to capture a good share of the home theater market.

Optoma is currently # 2 in popularity in home theater projectors on ProjectorCentral (see current vendor rankings). This is due in part to the very hot Optoma HD142x which is selling below $600, and in part due to the large number of products in the home theater niche (see Top Ten Home Theater Projectors under $1000).

Overall, Optoma has an aggressive pricing strategy, and the fact that the UHD60 is coming in at $2,799 is in keeping with this tradition. We will update this notice and enter the UHD60 into the Projector Database as concrete specs become available.


Reader Comments(14 comments)

Posted Jan 16, 2017 8:53:21 AM

By AV_Integrated

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
For those interested, the TI DLP Chip can be found on their product page here:

http://www.ti.com/product/DLP660TE/description

It shows the native resolution and there is a ton of information about the chip itself - DLP660TE. It was based upon Pico technology and was designed, apparently, from the ground up as a chip which supports 2160p/60 content.

It looks like the controller board supports 3D natively, so this apparently won't be a limitation of the chip itself.

http://www.ti.com/product/dlpc4422/datasheet

Much of the rest, such as what Optoma will build around this, is still unknown it seems, but there are certainly video processors out there which support the full HDMI 2.0 specification at 18Gbs and 2160p/60.

For what it matters (not much) 4K is a marketing term. 4K DCI is the movie theater standard of 4096x2160. But, 4K UHD is about the only standard most consumers will ever see at 3840x2160. I've gone down the road several times with 'definitions', and it boils down to simple nitpicking. Yes, 4K DCI was around first, but 4K UHD is what the industry is going to give consumers, and they like the term 4K.

What we really want is these new projectors to carry the 'Ultra HD Premium' logo indicating 10-bit support and 18Gbs support for UHD Blu-ray and the like.

Posted Jan 8, 2017 1:27:07 PM

By Andrew Riley

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
It says it has internal zoom and lens shift, but no mention of lens memory function. If it includes that, then it will be HIGHLY desirable for me and many others.

Posted Jan 8, 2017 11:59:41 AM

By Bob Allen

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
Does this have 3D? I realize it would not be 4K 3D, but there was mention at CES that is does have 3D. Others on several forums have said that it does not.

Posted Jan 7, 2017 5:57:25 PM

By Andrew

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
Good explanation. One thing I'd like to point out: 3840x2160 pixels is NOT native 4K signal it is UHD only, native 4K is 4096x2160.

Posted Jan 7, 2017 12:00:15 PM

By Evan Powell, Editor

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
I guess I should write a separate piece on this, but to clarify, the pixel shift technology used by Epson and JVC is essentially different than the way the 4K DLP chip operates. It is not correct to think of the DLP process as pixel shift in the same sense as it is on 3LCD. On the 3LCD pixel shift machines, a 1920x1080 image is scanned on the first pass, then a second 1920x1080 image is off shifted diagonally by about half a pixel up and a half pixel sideways and overlaid onto the first scan. So it does not create a completely separate field of discrete pixels on screen on the second pass like the DLP chip does. This happens so fast that the eye cannot detect it, in the same way that interlaced scanning on CRTs is not visible. The advantage is that the first and second scans can be two slightly different 1920x1080 images (in other words, double the number of addressable discrete pixels) and the projector's image processing engine blends them to smooth out stair-stepping and increase detail definition. The result, as far as the eye perceives, is substantially enhanced picture resolution compared to standard 1080p. Though the math says it is half the number of addressable pixels compared to native 4K, the eye will perceive most video material as much closer to native 4K than 1080p. When viewing video material from normal viewing distances it will be difficult for most consumers to tell the difference. However with high resolution complex graphics you are more likely to see moire patterns and imprecise rendering of fine detail on the 3LCD pixel-shifted images that you don't see with the 4K DLP chip. Similarly, with complex financial spreadsheets when the font size of the text is particularly small, it is certainly more readable on the DLP chip. So it is with this type of subject matter that the increased precision of the 4K DLP chip is most apparent.

The 4K DLP chip starts with double the number of mirrors as a standard 1080p imaging device. But each mirror is capable of defining two separate and distinct pixels on the screen in alternating scans--the pixels do not overlap as they do on 3LCD pixel-shift machines. Again this happens so fast that it is not perceptible to the eye. So it is misleading to say that the 4K DLP chip has half the number of "pixels" as a native 4K chip -- it is technically correct to say that it has half the number of mirrors. With this technology there is no image processing required to blend the first and second scan. Projectors that use this chip are fully able to address all pixels in the 4K signal and put them on the screen. So we have no problem categorizing this chip as genuinely native 4K based on the fact that the image that it produces consists of the full resolution of the 4K signal.

Posted Jan 7, 2017 9:12:16 AM

By Angus

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
Simon, based on Evan's explanation it seems like yes - there'll be some form of pixel shift employed to generate the 4K image. However, the chip itself would have twice the number of pixels:

1080p Pixel Shift (1920x1080) = 2,073,600 real pixels Optoma Spec as described by Evan (3840×2160)/2 = 4,147,200 real pixels

It should be be perceptible to the naked eye if it alternates pixels sequentially... Like Evan said, 1080p pixel shift optimally doubles its pixel count to simulate 4K - that is 1/2 4K resolution. The new chip can generate full 4K using the same means.

I think one of the questions I would have is whether or not it's fast enough to run 4K HDR content at 60p - something every gamer is concerned about, especially now that the PS4 Pro has been released (and Project Scorpio in the near-future)

Posted Jan 7, 2017 8:52:37 AM

By Angus

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
Hi Evan,

I was wondering if they made any clear statements on whether or not support for 4K 60p HDR would be in?

I almost pulled the trigger on an Epson 5040UB before I found in your review that there were limitations (and AVSforum members were able to confirm directly as a hardware limitation when corresponding with the Epson engineers)

Thanks!

Posted Jan 7, 2017 1:33:19 AM

By Kevin

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
This is what I have been waiting on since the epson 5020 that I sold because I though the 5030 for sure would be 4k. I lost interest in projectors altogether since I wanted gaming on 4k and spent thousands on a 70 inch 4k tv and went down to a benq 1080.

This has me f**king jumping for joy and 5 stars to optoma!!!

Evan do you think the rest of the market is going to come crashing down in price now? Will we finally see many dlp vendors this year like acer and benq turning out 4k?

Can dlp single chip do HDR?

Posted Jan 6, 2017 9:02:35 AM

By Evan Powell, Editor

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
I don't know the refresh speed off the top of my head. I don't think we will see extreme full on/off contrast rating numbers on this chip once vendors get around to publishing them. Actual contrast will depend on light sources and lensing. The demos I've seen of this chip show reasonably solid ANSI contrast and very satisfying images, but I've not been able to test them with my own materials. We will know a lot more once the products begin to hit the streets obviously. It is too early to make any assumptions about comparative contrast.

Posted Jan 6, 2017 8:46:11 AM

By Simon

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
Evan Powell, Thanks for the clear explanation. Do we know how fast the switching is? Last thing we need is another source of headache.

Also, your report sort of contradicts with all speculations for low contrast from that DLP chip. I think we all hope it is a success.

Posted Jan 6, 2017 8:15:18 AM

By Evan Powell, Editor

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
Simon, this will undoubtedly be an issue of ongoing confusion. Physically the 4K DLP chip has 1/2 the number of mirrors. However, each mirror is used to define two discrete pixels on the screen by alternating its position in sequential refreshes. It is therefore able to address and display the full array of 3840x2160 pixels in the signal. If you look at a 1-pixel grid pattern projected by this 4K chip, you will see each alternating 1-pixel wide line cleanly defined as black and white. Conversely, with the pixel-shift technology used by JVC and Epson, this is not possible. Those machines use native 1920x1080 panels and offshift the pixel array diagonally on each alternating refresh. The maximum number of pixels they can address is 1/2 4K (or two times 1920x1080). Therefore a native 4K signal needs to be compressed to be displayed on these devices, where it does not on the 4K DLP chip. Though Epson and JVC's pixel shift technology is very successful in approximating native 4K video when viewed from typically viewing distances, it cannot reproduce a clean 1-pixel grid pattern like the 4K DLP chip can.

Posted Jan 6, 2017 7:32:28 AM

By Simon

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
So I read contradicting info. Some are saying that the DLP 4k will be actually half the pixels with technology similar to "pixel shift" to achieve 4k like image. Anyone has inside and true information?

Posted Jan 5, 2017 3:19:46 PM

By Wayne Reibold

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
I know lens shift has been a limitation of DLP projectors, I see mention of lens shift here, I wonder how much vertical lens shift and from what offset...

Posted Jan 5, 2017 1:58:37 PM

By Alan

Post a Comment Alert Moderator
Right on! This is what I have been hoping and waiting for! As much as the LG 4K OLED look fantastic, pricing in Canada has left me unwilling to make the change.

A native 4K DLP at this price would easily replace my venerable BenQ W9000, it is still awesome but on my 120" scope screen coupled with an Oppo 4K player it will bring renewed interest to the term "Movie Night!"

I read about the TI chip and this looks like a great way to give SXRD a real run for the HT money!

Looking forward to hearing and seeing more about this unit!

Post a comment

Commenting on this article is easy and does not require any registration. Your email address is necessary for you to activate your comment once it has been submitted. It will not be shown to other site viewers. ProjectorCentral reserves the right to remove any comment at any time for any reason. Foul language is not permitted, nor are personal attacks. All comments should remain on topic.

Name:

Email Address:(used only to confirm your comment)

Your Comment:

(Enter the numbers as they appear to the left)