Home Theater Projector
November 10, 2006
Sony made a big splash at the CEDIA trade show in September with the announcement of the Sony VPL-VW50. This is Sony's newest 1080p resolution projector featuring their proprietary SXRD technology. The biggest draw was the price tag--a mere $4,999, which makes it one of the two 1080p projectors to come to market this fall below the $5,000 price point. Reactions to the CEDIA demonstrations were mixed, and we were anxious to get our hands on it to see what it was really capable of. To sum it up in one sentence: the VW50 has outstanding black levels, color saturation and contrast, but the image is softer than we'd like to see from a 1080p resolution projector. Whether this projector is right for you will depend on your willingness to give up some image sharpness for increased black level and contrast. For us, 1080p resolution is all about maximum sharpness and detail, so this is not a trade-off we'd want to settle for. But if deep blacks and maximum color saturation are performance factors you value most, then the VW50 is a projector you will not want to miss.
ANSI lumens: 900
Contrast (full on/off): 15,000:1
Light Engine: 1920x1080, native 16:9, 0.6" three-chip SXRD, with a 200W UHP lamp.
Video Compatibility: 1080p/60/50/24, 1080i, 720p, 576p, 576i, 480p, 480i. NTSC/PAL/SECAM.
Connection Panel: Two HDMI, one 15-pin VGA, one 3-RCA component input, one s-video, one composite, one 12V trigger, one wired remote port.
Lens and Throw Distance: 1.72:1 power zoom/focus lens with vertical powered lens shift. Throws a 100" diagonal 16:9 image from 10.1' to 17.5'
Lamp Life: Unpublished.
Warranty: Two years.