Epson today officially announced availability its Home Cinema 5050UB and Home Cinema 5050UBe 4K PRO-UHD projectors, the much anticipated updates for the Home Cinema 5040UB and 5040UBe first released in 2016.
Priced at $2,999 and $3,299 respectively, the models are the same but for the inclusion of a 4K wireless HDMI transmitter with the 5050UBe.
The Home Cinema 5040UB was well-received by enthusiasts and reviewers alike, winning accolades that included ProjectorCentral's top honor Editor's Choice Award. Its appeal came from a combination of relatively high brightness, good black-level and contrast performance largely attributable to Epson's UltraBlack LCD imaging panels, convincingly sharp resolution for 4K content using 1080p imagers thanks to sophisticated pixel-shifting technology, and a variety of unexpected premium features including high-end optics, lens memories, and a dynamic iris.
All of this has been carried over to the new HC 5050 family, along with some recent advances debuted late last year with the step-down Epson Home Cinema 4010, another Projector Central Editor's Choice winner. Among these is an updated pixel-shifting scheme said to deliver improved clarity and Epson's latest Digital Cinema color mode that achieves the full DCI-P3 color gamut for today's HDR (high dynamic range) UHD content. Epson has also upped its game on its HDR tone-mapping and added support for HLG along with HDR10 content.
Another much-welcomed addition to the new model is an 18 Gbps HDMI 2.0 port, something sorely missed by gamers in HC 5040 because of its limitations on frame rate with HDR content.
Feature highlights in the new models include the following:
- 2,600 lumen brightness rating, up from 2,500 lumens in the HC 5040. Rated dynamic contrast ratio remains the same as the HC5040 at 1,000,000:1.
- 3LCD design that delivers equal white and color brightness, and is immune to rainbow artifacts that can occur with projectors that utilize a single imaging chip and color wheel.
- Epson's UltraBlack LCD imagers, which use a proprietry filter designed to suppress light leakage and improve black level.
- Epson's late-generation 4K PRO-UHD pixel-shifting technology to create a 4K-like image using 1080p imaging chips. First introduced in the HC 4010 and its sister model Pro Cinema 4050, this latest iteration benefits from more rapid pixel shifting to deliver sharper edges to the pixels.
- HDR support for both HDR10 and HLG high dynamic range content, and a new 16-step slider control to fine-tune the gamma curve for specific content and adjust the balance between brighter highlights and the retention of highlight and shadow detail.
- Epson has retained the Digital Cinema color mode designed to reproduce the full DCI-P3 color gamut used to master today's UHD-HDR content.
- As noted, HDMI 2.0 support now allows gamers to play 4K/60p games with HDR. The HC 5050 fully supports 4K HDR at 60 Hz with up to 4:4:4 (uncompressed) chroma subsampling at 8 bits, or 4:2:2 with 10- or 12-bit processing.
- Epson has carried over the high quality 16-element/15-glass element powered lens used in the HC 5040 and recent HC 4010, with the same wide-range setup capabilities: 2.1x zoom; +/- 96% vertical, +/- 47% horizontal lens shift. Improvements have been made in the 5050 to the fine adjustment of the lens shift to better accommodate the narrow bezels on "zero-edge" screens. The ability to store multiple lens memories for constant-image-height (CIH) setups on 2.35:1 screens remains.
- As with the predecessor 5040UBe, the HC 5050UBe model is shipped with a WirelessHD transmitter that allows connection of up to four HDMI devices and transmits up to 4K/30 Hz content with HDR.
- The projectors are supported by a limited 2-year warranty, 90-day limited lamp warranty, Epson's PrivateLine priority customer support, and free two-business-day replacement should that ever be required with Epson Extra Care Home Service.