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Panasonic PT-AE3000U Projector Panasonic PT-AE3000U
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60000:1 Contrast Ratio
1600 Lumens
Street Price: n/a
$3,499 MSRP

Panasonic PT-AE3000
Home Theater
Projector Review

Evan Powell, October 13, 2008

Every so often a projector manufacturer takes a mighty swing and hits one way out of the ballpark. Such is the case with this fall's new Panasonic PT-AE3000. Panasonic's third generation 1080p home theater projector combines a breathtaking array of features with rich, satisfying image quality, and brings it all to market for an MSRP of $3,499. The AE3000 is one of those new benchmark-setting achievements that will cause the industry to rethink pricing on 1080p projectors. One wonders... how long can some brands continue to ask $10,000 and up for 1080p projectors when you can get stunning, high contrast 1080p picture quality and an unsurpassed boatload of features for street prices close to $3,000?

Specifications

ANSI lumens: 1600

Contrast (full on/off): 60,000:1

Light Engine: 1920x1080, native 16:9, 0.74" LCD with a 165W UHM lamp.

Video Compatibility: 1080p/24/50/60, 1080i, 720p, 576p, 576i, 480p, 480i. NTSC/PAL/SECAM.

Connection Panel: Three HDMI 1.3 ports, one 15-pin VGA input, two sets of 3-RCA YPbPr component video, one composite video, one S-video, one 9-pin D-sub serial (RS-232c).

Lens and Throw Distance: 2.00:1 powered zoom/focus lens, with manual vertical and horizontal lens shift. Throws a 100" diagonal 16:9 image from 10 to 20 feet.

Lamp Life: Unspecified.

Lamp Cost: $400

Warranty: One year.

Panasonic AE2000

Panasonic PT-AE3000


Review Contents: Overview Advantages Additional Advantages Limitations and Conclusion
 

Reader Comments(114 comments)

Posted Oct 25, 2013 7:20:09 PM

By blu ray D

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I have had focus issues since day one. The lens was noisey when turning on/off the projector. It finally wouldnt stay focused during a movie. Sent it in for repair but I still have to refocus EVERY time I turn it on. Everything else is good but this is a major hassle after 2+ years of use.

Posted Jun 1, 2011 2:40:03 AM

By Kevin Flynn

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I had dust blobs in my AE-3000 twice after only 80h ops. First time I had it fixed by Panasonic. Second time I couldn't be bothered sending it in and fixed it myself just as Peter Roberts outlined it below (Thx Peter!). It is quite annoying though as I have my Pana mounted on a projector lift upside down 10ft high.

Giving the dust filter a closer look I've noticed that there was dust *behind* the filter cartridge edges inside the projector. Makes perfect sense since the filter sits there sort of flimsy. The whole frame needs to be air tight to avoid air being sucked in through the small remaining gap which it does apparently. I've simply sealed my filter off now using some duct tape. Hope it fixes the problem long term. I got to swap it out for another machine otherwise.

Posted May 18, 2011 11:33:06 AM

By Kevin McCarter

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Not sure what my problem is but I have the SilverStar VuTec screen and an HDMI connection running through a Pioneer receiver and my picture is very average. There is good detail on close-ups but background images are poor. Anyone have any advice?

Posted Mar 2, 2011 8:14:54 AM

By Steve

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Yes it does have lens shift. I've had mine from New and it's awesome. I've not had the dust or 'blob' issue. I keep my filter quite clean.

Posted Feb 8, 2011 8:57:27 PM

By gordy

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is any one know about panasonic pt-ae3000 projectors has lens shift opetion?

Posted Jul 26, 2010 1:50:51 AM

By moviemadphil

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I have a problem with my 2mth old panasonic ptae4000. Red blob on screen if background very dark. Close inspection show tiny red dots. Blasted once with compressed air and done a white test (white to black and black to white) left for an hour 10mins as per instructions. No joy. Please can anyone help

Posted Jun 22, 2010 1:00:02 PM

By jeremy mador

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I bought the AE 3000 back in Nov 09. Love it, great bang for the buck, especially since you can score one for $1800 nowadays. However, with only 44 hours of use dust blobs appeared on screen. Only one blob and you can only notice it during dark scenes. I'm about to ship it back to Panasonic for cleaning. The Panasonic representative I spoke to said I have 1 year to send it in. So here I am I'm about to send it in this week and I get shipping info from them etc and they sent me a statement in an email that says "cleaning is not covered under warranty". I'm going to call to clarify. It's a great projector, fantastic viewing experience. But I will say customer service by phone takes a LONG time (be prepared for 20 minute phone call, most of the time on hold, 10 minutes and you are lucky!). Disorganized and bureaucratic service. I can only speak from my experience. If they cover the dust cleaning since it is only 6 months old then I will be a happy man and all the hold time and bureaucracy on the phone will have been worth it. We shall see.

Posted Jun 5, 2010 8:35:44 AM

By paulingallus

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Hi, read back to posts over a year ago and you will see me praising the PTAE3000 I had just purchased. Well over one year on and lots of use I can confirm it's still only second place in my heart the first place going to my new wife! (wife number 2) It still has a couple of slight vague blobs outside of the main picture area and I still use it with a 210 inch diagonal whit matt duluxed, plastered wall, the wall used to give me convergence errors on the old 3 tube thing I had, not on this. Anyway, I am fussy about video as I do some work in it professionally. I still love the upscaled PAL SD and enjoy the magical HD, and would love more blu ray HD releases.. I run my Sony HD XR camera into it and enjoy "HD" footage I've shot in the far east. This projector is superb and my next trial will be if it can handle 3d. I'll attempt a bench strip down and duster spray at some point and maybe take a few photos of the process. and yes I love the way I can demount it and place it back and quickly get it running again!!

Posted Oct 13, 2009 11:47:01 AM

By Jay

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I suspect that like many others I am on the verge of buying this projector but am held by by the many complaints of dust issues. I would be hugely grateful for some hard information, particularly from Even Powell who has given the machine a glowing review. Thanks

Posted Sep 27, 2009 9:48:35 PM

By brandon

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Just got this and its great, looks great and easy to use. PS3 games looks very good, Blu Ray looks great, cable looks good also with it. I wanted to buy an 82in Mitsubishi DLP and I was showed a projector at best buy. We compared both products and the projection and screen was a lot better. The DLP was $4500 and I got the projector from visual apex for $2625 and it came with a 106in screen, dust cover, wall mount, 2 year warranty, and a hdmi cable. I would have been a fool to get that tv. Also, I was showed a Stewart Screen in Best Buy but I got one of the screens made by visual apex and I could not see any difference. But I must admit, everyone who has $2500 to spend on a HDTV, get a projector.

Posted Aug 31, 2009 11:27:31 AM

By Akshay

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The Panasonic PT-AE3000 Home Theater Projector is one of has the ability to store two different positions on the optic wire (which acts at the optical zoom and focus) to pass quickly and particularly optically by 16 / 9 format than 2.35:1 ( for those who have a screen with this aspect ratio) and 100Hz call Frame Creation and which can operate in two modes more or less invasive.

Posted Jul 20, 2009 11:42:12 AM

By EjIMBo.

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A few years ago I bought the Panasonic AE-900U which worked fine... for a while. I don't use it often, just to watch those "special event" movies etc., but after the warranty ran out, in fact practically the day after the warranty ran out, a year later and after only about 300 hours of use, the LCD units went out of convergence, making the picture look "fringed" with high contrast images... look like they have a blue line on the right and red on the left. There doesn't seem to be any way to correct this problem after searching on the net for any solution. This is particularly noticeable when you have the menus up on screen. Instead of white lettering, the lettering is divided into the three RGB colours, with some off by three pixels or so.

The thing's not completely unwatchable but I was really ticked off that this would happen at all with no way to fix it. I've read that it's "possible" to realign the units manually when you take the machine apart, but you have to REALLY know what you're doing to avoid further damage. And, with my experience with any of the service centers, they'll only make things work. In other words, if it's broke, they really WON'T fix it.

Panasonic's reputation of extremely bad customer service is well founded.

It seems to me that all Panasonic would need to do is have a program installed that allows you to electronically be able to re-align the pixels manually with a test pattern and the ability to shift each colour over a few pixels relative to each other. But, that would be making the machines last longer so we wouldn't have to toss it and spend another three grand on a new one, right?

Oh well. Yet another problem to add to the eventual lamp replacement.

I wonder if the new projectors have that problem? I guess we'll all find out a few days after those warranties run out. It's like they know exactly when to break down! :-(

When this projector finally packs it in, I won't be buying a new one. Too expensive for the short time you get to use it.

Posted Jul 7, 2009 1:58:50 AM

By lewisdavidbb@yahoo.com

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can anyone tell me how hours is on a new Panasonic AE3000U bulb.

Posted May 30, 2009 4:57:06 AM

By kevinp

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I have owned a couple of panasonic projectors in the past and they have always been good value for money. Although I have no intention of buying this model (I am waiting for a projector capable of 3D) I was stunned when I saw the price here in South Africa R65,000 with the exchange rate of around 10 Rand to the U.S. Dollar that would make it $6,500 yet in the U.S. you an buy it online for $2,500. Someone "PANASONIC" is taking the [censored] !!!! It would be cheaper for me to fly to the U.S. or U.K. and buy one.

Posted May 25, 2009 2:36:41 PM

By Max Edwards

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Be wary of purchasing any Panasonic projectors, Panasonic will not admit to any faults. Just google PT ax100 dynamic iris fault and see the hundreds of posts relating to the problem that the majority of owners are getting after about 300 hours of use.

Posted May 4, 2009 12:28:56 PM

By rickirick

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Regarding question about who is using s-video and composite video on a projector, I have multiple video sources, and I haven't yet invested in an upgraded a/v receiver that can do video up-scaling to HDMI, so I occasionly use the s-video and video input. Three examples: Old VHS tapes, security camera input, computers with old DVR software that only suppport composite video out. Of course these sources look pretty bad on a huge screen, but I will occasionally use them. When upconverting receivers become more standard the need for these jacks on the projector will diminish. I'll be glad when I only need to run one cable to the projector, but right now I'd rather invest money into a new projector than a new a/v receiver.

Posted Apr 26, 2009 7:45:17 PM

By duane schoon

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I am using a 2.35-1 screen and have no problem filling the screen using blu-ray with a 2.35 movie. I am still having a problem filling the screen with a 16-9 image. If I zoom it to the edges, I am blowing over the top and bottom. Does anyone have any suggestions.

Posted Apr 21, 2009 6:38:16 AM

By Igor

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A word of warning on Panasonic - I was under the impression from AE2000's user's manual that the lamp is replaceable. Guess what - when the time came to replace the lamp, I was in for a very rude surprise. One of the screws' heads on lamp unit was messed up - there was no way I could get it out. So there I was stuck with $2,500 useless piece of junk. Maybe they would've fixed it under warranty, but I have no reason to believe they would've gotten it right the second time around when they messed it up the first time. Even if they did, it would've been 6 to 8 weeks without a TV which is unacceptable to me. Decide for yourself whether you want to deal with those idiots.

Posted Apr 8, 2009 12:59:41 PM

By eva_kollarova@ri-rpc.sk

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Eva, tu je linka na recenziu projektora, ktory by som vam doporucil. Cena u nemeckych inet predajcov je okolo 2.450 EUR + cca 30 EUR preprava kuryrom. Zatial mam s nemeckymi predajcami len dobre skusenosti. Platno by som doporucil WS-OS-Motorleinwand rozmery 244x137, (ja mam rovnaky rozmer ale bez motora, stahujem ho cez taku tycku ktora bola v dodavke), na cenu som sa pytal cez inet, cakam na odpoved. Jediny problem je ze platno od projektora by malo byt vzdialene cca 4m (moze byt aj dalej az do 5m) aby obraz pokryl cele platno. Ak by sa ti projektor zdal byt drahy, potom tip c.2 je Sanyo Z700, ktory je za cca 1.100 EUR u DE predajcov,ten ma vsak nizsi svetelny vykon a potreboval by vacsie zatemnenie miestnosti. M Translation: Eva, here is the link to the projector review , which I would we recommend. Price in German from internet vendors is around 2,450 EUR + 30 EUR transportation around kuryrom. With German dealers I have had only good experiences. I would force recommended WS-OS-Motorleinwand dimensions of 244x137 , for the price I found through the internet, waiting for a reply. The only problem is that the current from the projector should be at about 4 m (which may be until 5 m) to cover the whole picture is valid. If your projector seemed (??), then tip is c.2 Sanyo Z700, which is in about 1,100 EUR for DE vendors, it has not lower Brightness and needed by darkened room. M

Posted Apr 4, 2009 10:55:26 PM

By Uday bhatia

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Yesterday I got a chance to get the panny 3000 at home to try for a few hours. At present I am using Sanyo Z-5 which is an excellent proj. I have upconverted it to 1080 p thru Yamaha 1800 amplifier & the picture is very good almost full HD. The diff. between the picture of both the projs is not earthshaking but yes the Pana's colours,full HD resolution, frame creation feature are worth mentioning. The whites are pure whites whereas the blacks are jet blacks. The black box looks like the HUMMER (very smart) with control panel on the right side which is very convineint since I have kept the proj. on a shelf above the sitting position.Generally all projs have their control panels above. The remote is small & nice with backlight ( very bright). Overall it is one of the best projectors I have ever used. My only concern was about the dust issue. If this problem could be solved easily I would definetly keep this projector without any hesitation.

Posted Apr 3, 2009 12:58:03 AM

By RAJIV THAKUR

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I ALSO NOTICE GREENISH BALLS ABOUT THE SIZE OF 6 INCHES DIAMETER . THERE ARE 4 BALLS SPREAD FROM THE CENTRE OF SCREEN TO THE RIGHT SIDE OF SCREEN AND IS VISIBLE IN DARK SCEENS AND WHEN THE TITLES /SCREEN CREDITS ARE DISPLAYED AT THE END OF THE MOVIE.PROJECTOR IS UNDER WARRANTY WHERE CAN I GET IT FIXED IN BOMBAY,INDIA .THE PANA AT3000U HAS ABOUT 30 HOURS ON IT

Posted Mar 29, 2009 8:45:27 PM

By John

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I just purchased the panasonic pt-ae3000.I think the picture is great. My only problem with it is the DUST isuses some poeple have with them. I have only twenty hours of viewing on it and have dust spots visible only on dark sceens!!! Whats up with that? My Buddy had the same problem with his ae2000 had to have it serviced. I'm having my replaced because I'v had it for less then 30 day's. I hope its not going to be an on going issue with it

Posted Mar 15, 2009 10:39:16 PM

By murray1

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Thanks aluminumangel: I appreciate the feedback. I'm guessing the warranty period of one year is the same; it's just the base to which the projector has to be returned for fixing differs. There's a big price differential between the regions, so I was thinking it would be cheaper to buy it in the U.S. - but it would be a gamble...

Thanks again

Posted Mar 10, 2009 9:21:22 PM

By aluminumangel

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murray1: the U and E models refer to the different warranties... U for North America, E for Europe/AU.

Posted Mar 6, 2009 10:23:02 PM

By murray1

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A supplementary question about the AE3000. In the U.S. it is sold as AE3000U and in Europe (and here in Australia) as the AE3000E.

Since, as I understand it, both units are sold with operating voltages of 110-240V, why are there differences? Also both take (I think) PAL and NTSC sources.

Or is this yet another example of price differentials as we see with DVDs?

Cheers

Posted Mar 6, 2009 3:21:48 PM

By Frank T

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I’m also an AE700 owner and thinking about buying the AE3000. I don’t see any difference between regular DVDs and Blue Ray DVDs on my AE700. In addition, jpg images have to be viewed in Natural mode to get correct colors, but light output in Natural mode is low; consequently, images look dark.

Interested to learn from anyone who has upgraded to an AE3000 from the AE700, if they can comment on the above?

Posted Mar 5, 2009 12:06:18 AM

By murray2

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I have - and have been reasonably happy with - a Panny AE700. Interested to learn from anyone who has upgraded to an AE3000 from that earlier model. Would there be such a significant difference to justify the cost?

Thanks in advance!

Posted Feb 18, 2009 3:55:55 PM

By Steve S

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I'd like to hear more about motion artifcats. I've yet to view even a 120 HZ LCD flat panel that performed well in that regard. My old Marantz DLP projector is only 720p but is much more pleasant to watch than any 1080 LCD I've seen yet.

Comments?

Posted Feb 15, 2009 6:38:58 PM

By Peter Roberts

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My PTAE2000 developed a faint green circle near the top-middle of the screen after less than 50 hours of use. With enormous thanks to several posts on AVforums, I diagnosed it as a dust blob. When almost fully defocusing the lens in one direction the circle changed into 3 bright green pixels each separated by 1 or 2 pixels. The defocusing also revealed lots of small dark patches throughout the screen (although these were not visible when the focus was normal).

Here's my experience of removing the circle:

1. Bought a couple of spray cans of compressed air (actually what comes out smells like a petrochemical, but the blurb on the can stated it was suitable for delicate electronics and photographic work). Cost about 10 quid each from a local electronics shop.

2. Downloaded a service manual for the PTAE2000 from www.nodevice.com (cost 10 euros), which contained details on how to almost fully disassemble the projector (didn't need to do this, fortunately -- see below).

3. Removed the top cover and lamp unit as per instructions in the user manual for changing the lamp.

4. Removed the upper case by unscrewing 8 screws, and stood the projector on its back panel so that I could spray into it without tilting the air can (I found that liquid didn't come out of the air can until it was it was almost horizontal, but I wanted to make sure that the can stayed almost vertical throughout the cleaning procedure in order to minimise this possibility).

5. The position of the LCDs is obvious from the three wide connecting ribbons (this arrangement probably applies to most projectors). I had intended to remove the "A-P.C. Board" as per the instructions in the service manual, but although it is held by only a few screws, perhaps a dozen connectors would also need to be removed. After unclipping the first 2 I decided that this was going to be a bit difficult (they were very tight, and I didn’t want to damage anything in case I had to send the projector back to the manufacturer under warrantee), so instead I sprayed the air (via the thin plastic pipe that came with the can) through the gap between the ribbons and the PCB in the general direction of each PCD panel.

6. Upon reassembly and testing the green circle was still there, as were all the dark patches. Oh dear.

7. Decided to give it one more go before contacting Panasonic, and this time I ensured when spraying that the end of the plastic pipe was almost as deep below the PCB board as the top edge of each LCD panel. I wasn’t 100% sure that I could see where each LCD panel was, but I tried to spray both sides of each of them and also through a copy of holes in the metal box covering the square area where the light beams intersect. I also sprayed into an accessible gap between the lens and LCD assemblies.

8. This time upon reassembly the green circle and all of the dark patches had disappeared.

In summary, it took about 30 minutes and no hassle of returning the projector to the shop or manufacturer (even if they did do this under warrantee) to completely remove the dust blob and also lots of other rubbish on the LCD panels.

I still don't understand why dust (or anything else that is in the light path that shouldn't be there) would appear as individual bright pixels when defocusing -- anyone have a convincing explanation?

Cheers, Peter Roberts

Posted Feb 14, 2009 8:56:43 PM

By Todd K

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Just orderd the 3000 Just wandering if i should go with a 100nch or 120nch would i loose any con or rez if i go with a bigger screen ?

Posted Feb 12, 2009 12:03:58 PM

By Full Name

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I realised that while more presets would be good for resolution such as 2.40:1, it probably won't mean much for 4:3 content, as I'm guessing whenever it happens on 1080p material, it has black boxes on either side, so only side-masking is necessary anyway.

On a follow-up to the whole "loss of resolution" topic, the actual resolution of 2.35:1 material would be 1920x817. True, that is a loss from 1080 lines, but it is for instance still better than 720p (plus it has many more pixels per line as well). True that anamorphic lenses could together with scaling make sure all pixels in the projector is used, but it is not a drastic increase in pixels, and these are only calculated pixels anyway. The pixel structure may in extreme cases (if you have very large screen and very short distance) be less of a problem. Part of what is gained in light output will be lost in different needed zoom setting. On top of that, adding more optics in the light-path can negatively affect the picture and/or be very expensive to aquire. I think the 3000 is a great step for the vast majority of users that have somewhat of a limit on budgets.

Posted Feb 12, 2009 9:45:31 AM

By Full Name

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In response to HTE: The projectors on the market are not the problem at this point. Blu-Ray and other HD media has not allowed for anamorphic content (2.35:1 squeezed to 16:9), like on dvd where 16:9 is squeezed to 4:3. They do not have the even better solution, a native 2.35:1 format either. Until someone starts putting out material using one of these two approaches (expect to wait a LONG time) - the AE3000 zoom approach is extremely good.

Question: Does it allow for only 2 lens memory settings? I'm building a theater and was hoping it accomodates 3 or more settings, so I could also do 2.40:1. (or I suppose some people might like 4:3). I'd like to keep all aspects same height so I don't have to do 4-way masking...

Posted Jan 28, 2009 8:28:52 PM

By paul in gallus

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Well ive now had the projector for a long while and ive run many films through it, of especial note is its rendering via HDMI of non hd movies off my panasonic dvd blu ray player. I was stunned at the transfer of mick jagger's "Performance" film, it almost looked HD and no old fashioned PAL/Colour-Under artefacts, it looked like the projector was plugged digitally into the back of the scanner and ive spent a long while in BC TV looking at monitors etc. Anyway, the bad news, the only problem I've had (more of my junior daughter's obs than my old eyes,) is that very very very faint white blob on a black background has occurred, top right quadrant and quite large, about the size of a dinner plate at my huge screen size. This artefact may well indeed make me send the projector back to Forum HiFi Nottingham where I scored it. They reacted concerned. I've bought some pressurised air-dusters and if it's a dust blob I'll report back to you all. PS Kevin P - if i was near a beach and it was warm i.e. california not friggin west wales I'd never be in my home cinema!!

Posted Jan 16, 2009 9:37:16 AM

By bill

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does anybody have any thoughts on this projector vs the JVC rs-20??

Posted Jan 10, 2009 3:54:52 PM

By doc92

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does anybody know anything about dust issues with this projector?? I saw one comment by somebody who said he was having dust problems with the projector that was causing issues when viewing dark scenes. I havent heard anything else bad about this projector and this is the one issue that is keeping me from purchasing it at this time. Any feedback concerning this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Posted Dec 23, 2008 4:18:05 PM

By Nabi

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Kevin your comments re: pricing are right on again. I don't know whether Nossy should be taken at face value or is, perhaps, an industry mole out to misguide us. (Call me a cynic but I am always suspicious of consumers who ananonymously argue in favor of high prices.)Certainly going from 1/4 hidef to full hidef over 5 years or so shouldn't require the prices we're seeing; also, there are large and medium sized Chinese firms now doing everything from design to production (Javes comes to mind). It's likely that we're paying excessively for mere tweaking and 'badge engineering'. NOW IS NOT A GOOD TIME TO BUY: the economic crisis might bring the industry around to a more reasonable point of view. On the other hand, they might just ask us for a bailout.

Posted Dec 23, 2008 1:11:23 AM

By HTE

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About the anamorphic zoom memory feature...I think people are missing something here. Movies shot is 2.35:1 or similar and displayed on a 16:9 format projector have the top and bottom 1/3 of the image "switched off" hence the balc bars. What people don't realise is this means that you get about 40% less light output and your image is only 1920 x 700 (approx) zooming to make it fit a screen just pushes the black bars off the screen but does nothing to resurrect the lost lumens, plus of course your pixel size is now huge. Until we get widescreen projectors the only way to get full res' full light output in anamorphic movies is with an anamorphic lens. This is a great projector but the anamorphic zoom is really a "hack" which will suit some but you will never get the snap and boom of true anamorphic widescreen. As long as buyers realise this then they wont be disappointed.

Posted Dec 22, 2008 8:16:56 PM

By Robert Best

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I have the AE2000 (really great) on a 140" screen and want to upgrade to the AE3000 (wow) BUT I am very interested in 3D (stereoscopic) videos, which are gaining momentum. Can this projector operate in straight 120 Hz frame rate or somesuch without performing frame interpolation, which would wipe out Frame Alternating 3D? I don't want to paint myself into a corner when 3D hits the big time (soon). Panasonic is showcasing a large plasma 3D system with material on BD (special player?) but I would like the AE3000 to carry some label saying "3D Ready!" Anybody know anything?

Posted Dec 22, 2008 8:50:08 AM

By digi-head

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Can anyone confirm if the lens memory feature will work if you are using a horizontal lens shift? I understand that the vertical zooming effects are compensated for by digitally shifting the image up or down, which throws out top or bottom lines which were black bars anyway, but there are no vertical black bars, so I'm guessing that the memory feature can't compensate for a horizontal shift. Am I correct??

Posted Dec 22, 2008 6:42:53 AM

By kevinp

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Nossy, There is a huge price difference between the cheapest projectors & the latest 1080p models. yet the same / similar wages,development, advertising, legal costs, 25% Markup apply to all. The jump from HD ready to Full HD technology is probably smaller than that of SD to HD Ready. But the price increases are much greater.

P.S. paulin congratulations on your purchase (if I were buying now its the one i'd go for). But I'am holding off until the projector room is completed and this may take some time :( Its just to hot here and the beach it to close. And who knows what CES 2009 may bring.

Posted Dec 18, 2008 12:32:07 PM

By Nossy

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Why is the price alot more than it cost to manufacture it?? The expense is easy to calculate. Don't think the cost of assembling the product is all that should be factor into the final price of the product. It take Engineers/Designers (60,000-100,000/year salary) to implement and test out the features. Not to mention QA department. Applications for patents, lawyers to make sure you don't mess with othe company IPs, etc. And in addition, markups from resellers (middleman) so they can profit. Why does LCD/Plasma prices comes down really fast in price? Simple answer also. Supply and Demand. LCD/plasma sale figures is magnitudes higher than projectors. I know ALOT of people and only a handful of them owns a projector while most of them have 2-3 flat panels at home. It's no point in building a $50million dollar factory to manufacture a lower volume, low profit product. Most likely the R&D are done in-house, and manufacturing the product is outsourced to China/Taiwan. And of course they have to back-calculate how much money they have put in R&D and in advertisements, etc. It is important to continue researching and having the technology in place just in case the technology gets hot and everyone starts buying it.

Not only that, projectors are not as out-of-box friendly as flat panels and rear projectors. Often times they require a dedicated room.

Posted Dec 12, 2008 4:33:05 PM

By paulin gallus

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(and hi Kevinp) I've now had the panasonic PT AE3000 for 4 magical weeks, and watched a lot of blu ray media on it (there isnt that much media yet however). It's superb, the trusty old barco graphics 808 is in the hallway ready to sell on ebay. I've run my own HVRZ1E morrocan footage on it as well at 1080i 50p. I run it about 6 meters/yards back and the wall is diagonal 200 inches for films in 2:40:1 according to my learned daughter as i dont read the labels. the room is large. Ok, the black is not as stunning as the CRT systems, the wall is a white matt dulux ICI paint rolled over a plaster skim, (in the uk this is the norm and its not optically flat but okish ), i don't even use special paint yet but probably will. I'll experiment with grey paint first that may get a better perceived black level. It's very VERY bright, so i switched it onto long life mode. films run are 2001 space odyssey, to transformers. BBC HD Planet Earth (16:9) All the features work easily. SD dvd rendering is good. Stunning natural colours in all modes. Not "aware" of any fast action motion artefacts except on normal SD PAL DVDs via HDMI. Easy to use menus and remote. I use 5 old tannoy 15 inch monitors for audio + 15 inch subw. (it's in the basement of a recording studio)

Oh [censored] this is a nice projector I am so glad I waited. It's cold in west wales and raining all the time, local cinema is 15 miles away in a flea pit of bad surround sound and noisy locals, I am at home all warm wrapped up in a duvet watching fantastic images... thanks Panasonic...happy Christmas all.

Posted Dec 12, 2008 1:23:12 PM

By rickirick

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Would like to see Panasonic come out with simlar model with all features except the power zoom and power focus, maybe $1000 less.

Posted Dec 5, 2008 7:44:27 AM

By Johnny

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Projector Central: Any chance of a "shootout" between the Panasonic PT-AE3000 and the Sanyo PLV-Z3000? The PLV-Z3000 seems to be similarly equipped, although fully manual in operation.

Posted Nov 26, 2008 3:01:49 PM

By tomo

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I bought this today, really the best projector on the market for value.

Posted Nov 24, 2008 4:15:59 PM

By Moike

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I just installed this projector as a replacement for my outdated Infocus X1. I expected great things, and this projector exceeded my expectations. At 126" diagonal in eco-mode the projector has plenty of brightness for the cinema modes. The image even tolerates full room lighting pretty well in both normal and dynamic modes.

My only disappointment is that I was really looking forward to the frame creation feature, since I don't like the motion judder of 24 fps. After turning it on, however, I found that I couldn't lose myself in the movie the way I normally do. It has a sort of "home video" feel to it that makes me feel like I'm standing next to the director and watching actors rather than looking through a window to an alternate reality. It's a neat feature but I think I'll leave it off personally.

Posted Nov 21, 2008 5:21:19 PM

By Art Feierman

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Fred asked a while back, why Evan's review showed 566 lumens, and mine measured only 402.

I think that's an easy one. In the past, I think everyone used Cinema 1 on the Panny as it's "best, no compromise" mode for calibration. We measured that 402, compared to a similar 385 lumens by Evan. Without any calibration, the Cinema 3 mode we measured at only 422 lumens compared to his 566, but we found it's color temp was jut over 8000K, so it would need a huge amount of grayscale adjustment to get down to 6500K. Perhaps, when he got done, he had his 6500K, but perhaps less black level performance, etc. More strange is that we only found about 20 lumens difference (pre-calibration) between the three Cinema modes, whereas he found almost 200 lumens. They may well have calibrated it into an "almost as good as" Cinema 1, but with more lumens. That's the nice thing about multiple presets, many of my readers find they use intermediate modes to get more lumens, with little cost in overall picture.

I liked Evan's side by side of the Sony vs Panny. We just got our Sony in, and I still have the PT-AE3000U, so will also be viewing both side by side, post calibration, starting this weekend. Should be interesting -art

Posted Nov 19, 2008 10:31:07 AM

By tony

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i use a TDP TW355 Toshiba and i will buy this week the AE3000 and i still think i am doing a good thing

Posted Nov 15, 2008 2:21:50 PM

By Nabi

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Good point, Larry. And that's another reason I'm sticking by my old projector (used mainly for about7 hours or so of video a week) at least until the price point drops closer to 1M (more or less the max me mom will cough up.) You seem like a good man to lead the resistance. Let me suggest that videophiliacs interested in conquering the craving to perpetually tweak discuss their plans with mom or their spouse. Comments like 'You're crazy!' or 'What a stupid waste of money!' help counter the addiction. Incidentally, another person in the resistance told me that you can keep on using the bulb after it's supposed to have expired, simply by reinstalling it.

Posted Nov 14, 2008 2:45:52 PM

By Larry

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The prices of the projectors are one thing, it's the price of the bulbs that's a killer! There is absolutely no reason in the world why bulbs need to be so expensive! Moreover they work to keep them expensive by not adopting an industry standard form factor. Not only that the intelligent electronics will prevent you from installing a different light source if, for example LED lamps ever become powerful enough. Imagine if every lamp in your home had a different socket for the lightbulb available from only one manufacturer? We wouldn't stand for it! We shouldn't stand for it in projectors either!

Posted Nov 8, 2008 10:31:12 PM

By firstnline

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I just purchased the projector and went to start to tweak the waveform monitor. I am by no means techy, and was completely lost knowing where to start. Can anyone take me through the steps of how to bring the wave charts up, where do I get the commercial test screen and how to adjust the colors? The big white line just kept jumping up and down the chart, and I could not tell the difference between adjusting the color and contrast. HELP!!!! Cheers - Kev

Posted Nov 1, 2008 10:52:42 PM

By MikeG

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How does Panasonic PT-AE3000 compare to Epson Home Theatre 6100? I think the Epson is more than 20% lower cost ($1999)

Posted Nov 1, 2008 4:40:02 PM

By TED

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looks like that while this is an improvment for panasonic it still cant match the old 1080UB which still has a better black level. So that means the 7500UB will have the AE3000 licked easy for all out PQ quality.

From Arts blof at projector reviews http://www.projectorreviews.com/blog/2008/10/30/panasonic-pt-ae3000u-home-theater-projector-first-look/

Posted Oct 31, 2008 3:23:51 AM

By BenoitM

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A couple of questions:

1) how serious is the lipsync issue ? ("Even with Frame Creation off, you will typically see a slight video delay"). I enjoy a SD DLP projector for 8 years now, and I want to go to HD, but this scares me.

2) I have a 4:3 screen now, and many videos in SD 4:3 (also many SDTV shows are still 4:3). I'm scared that with a 16:9 projector, 4:3 SD content would be displayed in a small area of the 4:3 screen because of the cumulative effect of top letterboxing due to 16:9 native projector and 4:3 lateral cropping due to 4:3 (with 1:1 pixels) program. Would be Lens Memory be of any help here (memory pos. #1 would be optimzed for 16:9 display and memory pos. #2 would be zoomed in for 4:3 display across the full 4:3 screen). Or does it work *only* for 16:9 vs 2.35:1 ?

Posted Oct 30, 2008 12:31:06 PM

By kevinp

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Geoff P. Why donate a 1080 p projector to a school who can't make full use of it.

If anyone is thinking of doing this please donate it to me instead and I will send the school a PTAE 500 which they can use to the full :)

also why would anyone pay a fair price for a second hand Full HD projector if they don't need the extra resolution as they could find lower resolution ones much cheaper.

The solution to is allow the HDMI connection to accept other types of signal. That way anyone who needed could connect with a fairly cheap adapter.

However this would reduce the value of removing the connectors because part of the saving would be related to the processing of these signals.

Posted Oct 29, 2008 6:50:49 AM

By Geoff P.

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Ed,

I agree with you for the most part. However, I don't see any harm in including s-video and composite. I'm sure that removing them wouldn't introduce much of a cost savings.

I would rather have inputs that I don't really need instead of needing inputs that I don't have. One thing it does is let me hook up my Wii right out of the box (it only comes with composite connections). It also adds value when you want to sell it later in it's life. You can sell or donate it to organizations (like schools) who wouldn't be in a position to use HDMI or component.

Posted Oct 28, 2008 10:30:24 PM

By Ed Woo

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@ Liquidmetro re: "Your sweeping statement is applicable to those who only wish to use projectors with high def inputs for home use to display high def content."

This (AE3000) is a home theater projector, no? Then I agree with you. My sweeping statement is for "projectors...for home use to display hi-def content." Just to reaffirm my point here: if you're going to spend thou$ands for a dedicated home theater pj, why would one use the old-style composite/Svideo interconnects? So why would this respectable AE3000 even bother to include these inputs? Beats me.

Let me pose this question to everyone on this post: If you have or are planning to purchase this sweet piece of equipment, are you currently using or will you use the composite/Svideo inputs?

I concede the fact that the composite/Svideo inputs may be useful for multimedia pj's, but c'mon - do they still belong on home theater/high def projectors? We don't see Blu-ray mfgrs releasing any BD/VCR combo machines, do we?

Posted Oct 28, 2008 8:09:10 AM

By Liquidmetro

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@ Ed Woo re: 'I always laugh at the fact that PJ manufacturers still include composite and S video inputs in their boxes, while touting an HDMI 1.3 input for hi-def content.'

Erm while S-Video and composite may not be useful if you are only considering hi-def, it is still of use to others. I had to buy an old MacBook Pro because Apple decided to remove compatibility with the older analogue connections (you can still get Analogue RGBHV via a minidisplay port to 'VGA' adapter, but then a scan (down) converter is needed). I am a visual artist and provide visuals alongside DJs/bands. The default PAL/NTSC industry standard video mixer only has S-Video/CV inputs as hi-def is along way off (live mixing of this size video too demanding - even with Dual Cores and 512MB of VRAM and 4GB RAM). I have used Matrox DualHead2Go's but this is only for 1280x480 (mixing between 2 x 640x480 and 1 x 1280x480 across twin projectors). By day I work in education as an AV Technician and we utlise all connections on the rear of the 100+ projectors I am responsible for.

To conclude different markets need different connectors (inc niche ones like mine). Your sweeping statement is applicable to those who only wish to use projectors with high def inputs for home use to display high def content.

Posted Oct 26, 2008 7:38:43 PM

By Nabi

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Paul, you're luckly to have a wall that can give you such a large (150 inch) diagonal. Provided it's a flawless paint job, it may be better than a screen--assessing viewing characteristics is pretty subjective. After dweebing around with a screen (crinkles, bends, etc.) I finally settled on a sheet of white melamite fibreboard(6 bucks at Home Depot). The largest diagonal I can get with the standard sheet size is 98 inches but trimmed to 16/9 on my wall it looks pretty pro.

Posted Oct 26, 2008 6:42:56 PM

By paulin gallus

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Thanks Kevin, I appreciate that as i handn't picked up on that specification! I am now 99 percent ready to order, i'll post what i find when i get it. In the uk you get 7 days to check your stuff if you buy it over the net, this is the "Distance Selling Regulations". My screen is a flat plastered wall and it's worked well over the years. I use normal white matt Dulux paint! I am also thinking of making my own screen if I can get a roll of suitable material. Stretching it like a trampoline on an aluminium tubular frame with rubber zig zags. Interesting time with projectors, I paid £1500 UK pounds for my stalwart Barco 808 6 years ago, and i love the blacks but PAL is PAL is PAL (and NTSC we used to call Never The Same Colour Twice!) even at 100Hz FR! thanks again and this site is brilliant as a guide, even tho i use sony in the pro world I am switching to Panasonic for the projector!!! Paul in Gallus (West Wales UK)

Posted Oct 26, 2008 9:29:27 AM

By kevinp

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Paulus, The Panasonic adverising show tables going up to 200". so if it can't manage 150". You could get you money back as the product was not fit for purpose. Also I agree with your comment with the 100" screen size bigger in my book is definatley better. I will be building a projector room that will allow me to use a 200" sceen. The only problem the cost of a screen this size. And to think I thought it was the projectors that are overpriced.

Posted Oct 25, 2008 4:25:14 PM

By paulus gallus

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hi, ive a big projection room totally dark and i use a barco 808 at 150 inches diagonal, i also have a proxima 2000 lumen i use the barco to play back 2.35 :1 dvds its old but works well, so, i am going to upgrade to this new one, but i cant really work out if i can get a 150 inch diagonal, from this panasonic or if it will be too dim at this width, i use a wall surface at the moment but will buy a large screen at some point, i don't want really hi-brightness, but i love the large screen and sitting well away from it i get a feeling of space you don't get when you shrink down to 100 inch diag, which to me is just two tvs wide! are these projector only designed for small-room home theatres. what will it look like real large?? paul in limey land

Posted Oct 25, 2008 8:51:19 AM

By Dino

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I would like to see this projector matched up with the new Da-lite JKP Affinity screen when this screen is reviewed. The word is this screen has been developed by video guru Joe Kane and Da-lite engineers specifically for HD projectors and really shows an increase in detail, uniformity and contrast over other screens due to the new screen material. Looking forward to the screen review!

Posted Oct 24, 2008 12:00:39 PM

By kevinp

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Nabi you are quite right about the cost of manufacture being much lower I suspect the price is closer to $1000. Zim $ that is. Also you are right about the way projectors are marketed. I have never seen a projector being used in a store (Even a panasonic store). Neither can I recall seeing a TV add showing a projector being used in a home. Given the choice of watching a movie on a Projector Screen or 42" Plasma/LCD. The Projector wins every time. Whats more the projector should be cheaper to produce & ship than an equivalent resolution TV.

Posted Oct 24, 2008 9:48:36 AM

By Gary

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Can anyone offer up a good screen choice to use with this new PT-AE3000? I will be projecting a 120" diagonal image in a room that can be blacked out any time of the day. I do plan on using it for , HD sport broadcasts and gaming also, so I probably will want atleast a little light in the room for those types of activities. I want an electric tensioned screen, but I mainly need input on what material would be best suited for my application and this projector. Looking to keep the price of the screen in the ballpark of a 1000 bucks. Any suggestions?

Posted Oct 23, 2008 10:41:01 PM

By Nabi

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Well, I certainly agree with Kevin although I would be surprised indeed if it cost the manufacturers anywhere near $1000. to manufacture one of these projectors. In fact, that's probably where the price should have migrated to by now. Countless insider commercial articles--one appeared recently in The Atlantic-- point out that the cost of manufacturing (generally in the orient) usually represents the smallest fraction of the sales price. As another poster pointed out a few letters ago, these are not 'state of the art' projectors but, supposedly, 'value priced home theatre'; on the other hand, this is certainly a mature technology so why shouldn't the price of base 1080p models have dropped faster? I think we are being subjected to some industry moles here--whoever heard of a potential customer arguing for high prices? It's farcical. The artificially hi price point is partly maintained so as not to jeopardize the bread and butter phenomenon of people 'trading up' their TVs for larger and larger screens every couple of years or so. Most people haven't even heard about projectors--the large electronics stores hide them away. The projector is still being targeted almost exclusively at business people and videophiliacs.

Posted Oct 23, 2008 3:03:01 PM

By Ed Woo

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I agree w/Kevinp's point. All I need is 1 HDMI and maybe 1 component input. I always laugh at the fact that PJ manufacturers still include composite and S video inputs in their boxes, while touting an HDMI 1.3 input for hi-def content. Computer mfgrs got with the program when they started eliminating the floppy disk drive from their towers - they're just useless now. If you're going to drop a couple grand for a home theater projector, are you really going skimp out on your cables and use the "yellow" one? Seriously, now.

Posted Oct 23, 2008 2:17:37 PM

By kevinp

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Also I would be happy to drop some of the features. All I want to do is watch blu ray movies. So only need 1 HDMI all the other connections can go, I dont't need to adjust the colours as the director inteneded is good enough for me. All I need is one scaler be it in the blu ray player or in a reciever. A single remote would handle the player / reciever / projector. Don't even need a nice case. the room will be to dark to see the projector anyway ! changing the lamp to LED should shave a fair old chunck of the price. clever use of the poloroid filters should enable 3D projection an extra feature for little cost. Dropping all these features should mean Panasonic will be paying me :)

Posted Oct 23, 2008 1:57:08 PM

By kevinp

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The point is that there is no reason for the pixels to cost more they are smaller so there are no extra raw materials, The machines that produce them should also have improved so its quite possible that they may be produced faster. Compare the price of computers that process better than HD pictures and digital cameras with many times the number of pixels all vastly cheaper. I doubt if it costs more than $1000 to produce one of these projectors.

Posted Oct 22, 2008 12:11:51 PM

By KDCTS

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No point in commenting on the rich feature set of this PJ except to point out these features cost money. Who doesn't want more for less but it's not practical to model the decline in pricing we see on plasma/LCD Tv's and apply that to the projector market. Look down your block and it's a pretty safe bet every house has at least 2 tv's...maybe more. Ask your neighbors how many dedicated theaters they have. Panasonic has done an amzaing job delivering a very high quality innovative unit at this price point. And yes it dose cost more to get you those "extra" pixels. The only way to get to a "cheaper" price point is to actually take away features and use subpar materials just to hit a price point like the Chinese and Tawainese have done to the TV market...it's not in our best interest. Want a better price...wait a year and get a close out don't ask the manufactures to hit a price point.

Posted Oct 22, 2008 11:07:28 AM

By Greg

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"...after you zoom the lens forward so that a 16:9 picture fits perfectly into the "height" of your 2.35 screen are there still black bars on the sides of the 2.35 screen? Thanks"

Yes, there is no way any projector can overcome this issue, it's simply a matter of geometry.

The only way to elminate black bars completely, for all movie ratios, is with a 4-way (top and bottom) masking system.

Posted Oct 21, 2008 1:31:23 PM

By onpoint

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to remove the black bars the aspect button on the remote goes 16+9 hfit vfit to zoom usally the vfit removes the black bars with out degrading the picture forgot about a lens that cost to much any way you no it would be nice

Posted Oct 19, 2008 7:52:29 AM

By kidzey

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anyone know if this is plagued with the same design flaw causing all the dust blobs on the ae2000?

Posted Oct 18, 2008 9:07:52 PM

By Manjunath

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with 2499$ MRP, 60000:1 contrast ratio - this unit is going to set a new trend in 1080p projector market, i was planning to buy a AE2000u at 2450$ last month, thought lets wait to see the price of AE3000u for a while, i think the wait was worth every minute.

Posted Oct 17, 2008 6:20:06 PM

By pomFritz

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Very intersting review. What about image upscaling quality?

Posted Oct 17, 2008 4:56:58 PM

By Raúl Romero

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With this projector in market, I don´t care about if there is other models too expensive. Is not my matter.

RR

Posted Oct 17, 2008 1:36:58 PM

By Nabi

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YOUR MOTHER (or wife) IS RIGHT Exactly my point Kevin: prices should have migrated down much more quickly, just as they now have with TV, computers and other facets of the technology. For example, I'm seeing great deals on very large screen HD TVs right now, similarly with computers of all types. Frankly, I just can't see where the great expense lies building these beamers, particularly since the common industry sources (in China) for much of the technology seem pretty darned cheap! In such a mature environment (for the technology), it is odd, even suspicious--do we have some moles here?-- to see the occasional respondent defending hi prices; what sane consumer ever acted this way?! Presently we are perceiving an artificially created price point and so Iacknowledge an opportunity for extravagance rather than value.

Disclosure: at the time the above remarks were posted the author had an interest in lower prices.

Posted Oct 17, 2008 12:23:51 PM

By KevinP

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With a street price of $2499 this represents great comparative value for money. But I still believe it is expensive in terms of its cost to manufacture. Just having extra pixels is no reason for a such a high cost. (you wouldn't pay more for a photo just because it had more people in it). Having said that i'am tempted, but will hold out for a LED based 3D Projector.

Posted Oct 17, 2008 11:50:09 AM

By Jason

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For those of us who already have anamorphic lenses does the AE3000, like the AE2000, support vertical stretch?

Posted Oct 17, 2008 11:40:27 AM

By Hugo

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The PT-AX200 features a "Game" mode that improves signal processing for better response, allowing you to play games with minimal stress. It also reveals gradation in saturated areas to show detail that are otherwise lost in very dark areas.

Does the AE3000 feature anything like this?

Posted Oct 16, 2008 2:51:38 PM

By Jake

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Can anyone recommend a 106" 16:9 screen for the pt-ae3000u with a little ambient light? I've read that the Da-lite HCCV goes well with the 2000 model, but looks grainy. Thanks!

Posted Oct 16, 2008 12:33:21 PM

By Erik

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Peter:

Sorry, I hadn't understood your setup. I think you are right that it will be impossible to switch between 16:9 and 2.35:1 with your current setup, without using the manual vertical lens shift.

I'm not sure, but perhaps you could aim the projector down instead of using vertical lens shift. You'd have some keystoning (but the projector can compensate for that digitally to some extent), but I guess you would be able to do the 2.35:1 and 16:9 switch with a button press.

Posted Oct 16, 2008 11:33:07 AM

By Peter Jones

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One more followup to my previous comments: I found a spec sheet here:

ftp://ftp.panasonic.com/pub/Panasonic/Drivers/PBTS/brochures/PT-AE3000_Specifications.pdf

which seems to confirm the interpretation that the lens memory feature is designed to work only when the lens is vertically positioned between the top and bottom of a 2.35:1 screen. On page 5, there are charts for projector placement ranges for different screen sizes. The dimension H is the vertical offset between the lens and the top (inverted ceiling-mount) or bottom (table/shelf-mount) of the screen. Negative values of H correspond to the lens being higher than the top or lower than the bottom of the screen. The first table, which describes 16:9-only installation, has ranges of H that start with a significantly negative value. The second table, which describes 2.35:1 screen installation with the lens memory feature, has much smaller ranges of H that all start at zero, implying that the lens cannot be higher than the top or lower than the bottom of the screen-- because, I assume, there is no optical lens shift integrated with the lens memory feature.

Posted Oct 16, 2008 10:39:08 AM

By Peter Jones

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Erik,

I understand how the digital image shift makes the automated lens memory work if the lens is vertically positioned anywhere between the top and bottom of the 2.35:1 screen. My question was about when the lens is positioned outside that range-- say, higher than the top of the screen, as is typical for ceiling mount configurations like mine (or lower than the bottom of the screen, like for some coffee table configurations). I don't understand how it could work in such cases, without additional manual adjustment of the vertical lens shift on every 16:9<->2.35:1 switch.

I have a 2.35:1 screen and a projector (Sony VPL-VW50) ceiling-mounted with the lens higher than the top of the screen, and I once tried to see if I could switch between 16:9 and 2.35:1 modes by using the projector's motorized zoom adjustment only (not its optical lens shift) along with the digital vertical image shift provided by my video processor (which is much more convenient to adjust than the projector's optical lens shift), but I quickly stumbled into the problem I described previously: with the lens's zoom and shift adjustments set for the 16:9 subarea of the screen, there is a certain offset between the vertical position of the lens and the top of the projected image-- from that point, merely zooming so that the image fills the width of the 2.35:1 screen inevitably increases that offset further, such that there is no projected image in the top band of the screen, so no amount of digital image shift can move the 2.35:1 subimage high enough.

Posted Oct 16, 2008 9:10:29 AM

By Terry

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Thanks for the great review. Sounds as if this projector is very impressive. For those of us considering upgrading to 1080p (I own the Samsung SP-H710AE), it would be great if you cold compare with the BENQ W5000. Even though you were impressed with the Panny's contrast and sharpness, can you compare it with BENQ's? I used to be wary of DLP (I was nervous about "rainbows" which I have never seen), until I purchased my projector and now I am very used to the deep, rich colors and satisfying blacks. Has the Panny finally crossed that threshold?

Posted Oct 16, 2008 8:14:10 AM

By gwlaw99

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How do the black levels compare to the Epson 1080UB?

Posted Oct 15, 2008 4:46:48 PM

By Erik

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iris:

That is an excellent question, and one I would also like to see answered.

If the black bars on a 2.35:1 movie force the iris mostly closed, then I would expect the dynamic contrast to be much worse in such a configuration as compared to using the vertical-stretch mode and an anamorphic lens.

Posted Oct 15, 2008 4:39:28 PM

By Erik

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Peter:

You use the digital picture shift to compensate, similar to a V-Shift knob on an old TV. Essentially, you will be throwing out some of the frame at the top or bottom of the screen, but since that is just a "black bar" with a 2.35:1 movie, it doesn't matter. The lens memory includes the digital shift.

If you have a 2.35:1 screen, the setup would go: display a 16:9 image and use manual lens shift to center it vertically on your screen (memorize the settings), shift to a 2.35:1 image and use zoom, focus, manual horizontal lens shift, and DIGITAL vertical shift to fill and center the image on the screen and then memorize the settings. Now you should be to switch between 16:9 and 2.35:1 with a button press.

Posted Oct 15, 2008 1:35:12 PM

By Rickirick

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I'd like to see some comment about inorganic vs. organic LCD panels. My understanding is that the Panasonic 720p models have organic while the 1080p are inorganic. I'm especially keen to know if the inorganic panels will prevent the problem with some of the older Panasonic models (like the AE-700U) that experienced image degradation due to either the blue LCD panel or polarizer.

I'd also like to see commentary on how Pansonic's "frame creation" feature compares to the similar feature on LCD TVs, usually advertised as 120 Hz. I've always been annoyed at motion on LCD TVs and projectors, so I think this will become a common feature and the quality of the various 120 Hz implementations will be of interest.

Posted Oct 15, 2008 1:14:28 PM

By onpoint

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panasonic is king of projectors that's why it's #1 first of all to fill the screen just press the button on the hfit vfit zoom 16+9 you do not need to zoom in Sony and panny our the only one with this feature the 1080p model is the way to go it is more 3d ,sharper even on a 480source better than 720 version I like the 720 version most people would not notice the deferance I was going to get Sony xbr4 52 but it does not compare to the size or price quality is on par with the Sony 720 or 1080 you will be happy

Posted Oct 15, 2008 12:05:17 PM

By Peter Jones

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Please let me know if I am missing something here. If the lens memory feature cannot use the optical lens shift (which I gather from the review is manual, not motorized), then it would seem to me that it cannot provide full automation if the lens is positioned higher than the top of a 2.35:1 screen, because the vertical offset necessary for 16:9 mode will inevitably get bigger when the lens zooms to 2.35:1 mode, pushing the top of the projected image below the top of the screen (at which point the digital image shift cannot compensate). Right? If so, then this seems important to point out in the review, as it would affect many ceiling mount configurations (switching between 16:9 & 2.35:1 modes would be incrementally more convenient, but would still require a manual lens shift adjustment too). Thanks.

Posted Oct 15, 2008 10:43:45 AM

By Damir

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We are all looking for projector nirvana and few have the space and funds for a dedicated cinema. Most of us have to accept a dual function cinema/family room. As far as projectors are concerned I think the AE-3000 is pretty close to perfect. It has almost all the features one could wish for. Which brings me to my question. I was wondering if the AE-3000 has enough lumens to be used with a 100 inch Stewart Greyhawk G3 that is 16ft. 6in away in a white walled room that will sometimes be used for ball games in the day time and can be fully dark if I want.

Great review that leaves us wanting more reviews of the next good projector to come.

Posted Oct 15, 2008 12:52:37 AM

By peter mason

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No mention is made in the review about the quality of the de-interlacing; in the review of the previous model(Pt-AE 3000, the reviewer was slightly critical of the quality of the 480i de-interlacing. Has this been corrected in the new model?

Also the PT-AE3000 gives 1273 lumens in dynamic mode but the much cheaper PT-AX200 gives 1845 lumens in this mode. I would have expected the more expensive projector to at least match the light output of the cheaper one?

Posted Oct 14, 2008 8:40:00 PM

By Leonard Eckian

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Nabi A new Z1 when first released sold for close to 2K and it was offered a value price home theater projector not a stae of the art model. The first 1080P projectors cost around 30K. Now you can get a 1080P projector for less than 2K. I would say the 1080P bubble has already burst.

Posted Oct 14, 2008 6:05:54 PM

By Nabi

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Wow! And here I am still, happily, with my old Sanyo PLV Z1, hoping more for an improvement in quality of movies rather than technology. It was state of the art when I bought it for only about $500. or less. In that context, $3000. doesn't seem so cheap; in fact, one would think that 1080p prices should have migrated downward a lot faster. We're supposed to bite for something as esoteric as 'frame creation'? I guess it's like the stock market:videogeeks get caught up in the rush (just like the stock geeks). Ain't it time that bubble burst?!

Posted Oct 14, 2008 5:28:34 PM

By medina sod

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What I want to know is how it compares the the JVC RS1...

Posted Oct 14, 2008 5:23:07 PM

By Jeff

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"One wonders... how long can some brands continue to ask $10,000 and up for 1080p projectors when you can get stunning, high contrast 1080p picture quality and an unsurpassed boatload of features for street prices close to $3,000? "

Heh :-) I guess for about as long as Monster Cable can charge $150.00 for the identically-performing 4ft HDMI cable that you can get at monoprice for $6.00

There is no shortage of the "Boutique Elite" with too much discretionary cash and too little common sense.

-- Jeff

Posted Oct 14, 2008 4:41:19 PM

By Jack

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This projector rocks! The only thing i am still looking for in a projector is X.V.Color upscaling (the 16.7 million colors multiplied by factor 1,8) My current dvd/blue-ray collection will even look better with that feature. I'd prefered "Color creation" instead of the "Frame creation" Too bad we have to wait so long to see the first 10-bit(color) blue-ray titles appear... any news about such thing Evan?

Kudos to Pannasonic and thanks for the good review!

Posted Oct 14, 2008 1:49:16 PM

By mxm

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I had have a great luck to test this projector 2 weeks ago in my house for 3 days although I am not even remotely connected with AV branch. I really was curious the review to confront it with my findings and I must fully agree with it. The 100" image was simply spectacular (fed from BD). Everyone else who got chance to see it had the same comments like Evan's guests - it is like reality. Obviously there are even better projectors on the market and new ones will even be more so. However the sheer level of image quality, not to mention exeptional functionality, is so high that personally I think I can live happily with this one for quite long time. In other words in my opinion the front projector has matured enough with this model to be considered long term investment in home enterteinment. Enough to say that my wife, who was rather against spending money on the projecter, after seeing the results is actually asking me every other day, when will we have it and more over even though it is black it is allowed now to be ceiling mounted any place required in our multipurpose living room.

Posted Oct 14, 2008 1:12:28 PM

By DOuG pRATt

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I agree with the concerns expressed above about convergence. My next purchase will be based upon having that feature.

(Note: I'm not the DVD Newsletter Doug Pratt)

Posted Oct 14, 2008 12:46:48 PM

By iris

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When viewing 2.35:1 material, does the dynamic iris optimize for the interesting viewing area, or does it try to make the black bars look as black as possible to the detriment of everything else? I hope the former, but it may not be a big deal in practice for all I know.

I suppose this question applies to any projector with a dynamic iris.

Posted Oct 14, 2008 12:15:28 PM

By Adman

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Looks like I have a Epson Pro Cenima 1080p with a spare bulb for sell. I would like to get this Panasonic for the 2.35 viewing. I cannot afford a anamorphic lens so this seems to be the answer to my delima. Thanks 4792368887

Posted Oct 14, 2008 12:14:39 PM

By Adman

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Looks like I have a Epson Pro Cenima 1080p with a spare bulb for sell. I would like to get this Panasonic for the 2.35 viewing. I cannot afford a anamorphic lens so this seems to be the answer to my delima. Thanks

Posted Oct 14, 2008 10:40:13 AM

By Udo

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Nice review, nice projector. Would it be wasting money to buy this projector if your only input would be a HD PVR Cable box (Motorola HD6412) and basicaly watch 1080i/720p movies and sports? Would the next generation(if their is one) of the PT-AX200U be better choice?

Posted Oct 14, 2008 10:04:12 AM

By love2scoot

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Good review, but it missed one essential detail, which is 5:5 pulldown compatibility. I know the Sanyo PLV-Z3000 is capable of this, but it looks like this feature may be lacking on this projector (correct me if I'm wrong). You would think that since it is capable of 120Hz that it would be an easy addition.

Posted Oct 14, 2008 9:24:33 AM

By Butch

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One of the things I have loved about the Sanyo PLV-Z3-4-5 Projectors and which is also on the Sanyo 1080P projectors is the ability to clean the lcd panels with a small air brush device (I have animals in my home and the levels of dust can be quite high). This feature has been a real benefit to me. Does Panasonic have anything similar?

Posted Oct 14, 2008 9:17:13 AM

By LED fan

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Panasonic pt-ae3000 looks perfect. I am looking forward to the comparisons to other models in the same price range.

Also, I have not seen any progress on adopting LED as light sources. Is there any attempt by main stream manufacturers, such as Panasonic and Optoma?

Posted Oct 14, 2008 7:40:58 AM

By Derrick Bailey

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This new memory lens function that zooms out on a 2.35 screen, is the projector using all of the 1080p resolution as with v stretch/anamorhic lens combo to eliminate the black bars or is the panasonic just zooming out the black bars with a decrease of the pixels used to display the 2.35 aspect ratio?

Posted Oct 14, 2008 7:05:44 AM

By Alex

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How much audio time delay will be necessary to compensate for the frame creation video lag on "mode 2"? I'll also be getting the Panasonic DMP-BD55 Blu-ray player and was wondering if the built-in audio delay will be sufficient.

Posted Oct 14, 2008 6:36:30 AM

By hi_def fan

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This will be my next projector. The 2.35:1 zoom feature is what has me sold. Coming from a top-notch 720p DLP, I'm a little concerned about two things. First, convergence issues w/LCD. How was PJC's review unit in this regard? Second, dust as LCDs don't have sealed optics as DLPs. I've had dust blobs when I owned the AE700U & this was a nuisance. You can open the unit & blow canned air, but it's a nuisance still. I'm more worried about convergence & having to deal w/an online retailer about returning. But, as this PJ sounds so exciting, I will likely take the plunge anyway w/my fingers crossed.

Posted Oct 14, 2008 12:01:50 AM

By Dennis

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Panasonic AE3000 vs Benq w5000 which is better in terms of sharpness and contrast.

Thanks for your reviews of this website.

Posted Oct 13, 2008 9:46:07 PM

By Neil

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Wow, thanks for a great review. I was looking forward to it. I was wondering if you could comment on how it might compare to the JVC 750 which will be released soon?( if you saw it at CEDIA this year) Thanks again.

Posted Oct 13, 2008 9:14:17 PM

By DoctorX!

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Any comment on dust issues? There seem to have been some complaints on the 2000 for that. Otherwise...this thing seems damn near perfect for my needs.

Posted Oct 13, 2008 7:41:02 PM

By NextGenScared

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I've been waiting patiently for this review on the Panasonic pt-ae3000, but,after you zoom the lens forward so that a 16:9 picture fits perfectly into the "height" of your 2.35 screen are there still black bars on the sides of the 2.35 screen? Thanks

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