Optoma UHD50X 4K DLP Projector
Projector Central Highly Recommended Award

Highly Recommended Award

Our Highly Recommended designation is earned by products offering extraordinary value or performance in their price class.

  • Performance
  • 4.5
  • Features
  • Ease of Use
  • Value
Pros
  • Low input lag
  • High refresh rate capability
  • Bright light output
Cons
  • Mediocre HDR performance
  • Low-end grayscale leans bright
Our Take

There’s a lot of wariness from gamers about using projectors for playing games due to input lag, but with the Optoma UHD50X they can assuage those fears. Input lag is suitably low for all but the pickiest of gamers and it performs well as a multipurpose home theater projector in ambient light and dark room environments.

For decades, anyone who considered themselves a gamer was limited to a panel display—in the form of either a television or a computer monitor. Projectors were generally burdened with painfully slow input lag that caused playing a game to be exceedingly frustrating. But in the past few years, there's been an influx of low-input-lag projectors aimed at those of us who game that are becoming viable alternatives to TVs. Now the Optoma UHD50X has taken it a step further as the "world's first 240Hz cinema gaming projector." The benefits of a high refresh rate display are two fold for gamers: a possible reduction of input lag and better motion smoothing. Are these benefits realized with the UHD50X? And is it just a gaming projector or will it serve well as a home theater projector as well? Let's take a look and find out.

UHD50X fronttop w

Features

Easily the most anticipated feature of the Optoma UHD50X is its high refresh rate that can be enabled by turning on Enhanced Gaming Mode. But before you start up your Xbox or PlayStation there's a bit to know first. The 240Hz playback will only be accessible from a computer and at 1080p resolution, but that's not surprising considered that the maximum refresh rate supported by any console is 120Hz—also limited to 1080p. And right now, that's restricted only to the Xbox One. Nonetheless, each increase in the refresh rate comes with a reduction in input lag. With a 1080p signal, Optoma claims 23.8ms at 60Hz, 18.2ms at 120Hz, and 15.7ms at 240Hz. In our 1080p/60 test, we measured 24.7ms so it's reasonable to assume the 120Hz and 240Hz numbers Optoma publishes are accurate.

As stated, the image resolution for either 120Hz or 240Hz is limited to 1080p. This limitation is imposed by the HDMI 2.0 spec and not unique to the UHD50X. So even if you have a computer powerful enough to run a game at the projector's full 4K resolution and high refresh rate—which takes a lot of power and, with current hardware costs, money—the projector will be limited to 60Hz. (Right now the only way to do a high refresh rate at 4K is with two DisplayPort cables used at the same time for enough throughput.)

Expectation is that the next-gen Microsoft and Sony consoles will come with HDMI 2.1 and support high refresh rates in 4K (probably 120Hz). But the two HDMI ports on the UHD50X are 2.0 and 1.4, so 4K/120 will never be in the cards on this projector. The Optoma also doesn't have any anti-tearing technology (AMD's FreeSync is the only one supported on the Xbox One), so there is the chance of screen tearing artifacts since the refresh rate of the UHD50X can't be locked to the frame rate of whatever the console is outputting.

There was some speculation online that the UHD50X would include the new Texas Instruments DLP471TE DMD chip, but that isn't the case as it looks like that chip is still in development. Instead it uses the familiar 0.47-inch TI DLP470TE DMD chip with DLP's XPR technology, which recent UHD-resolution projectors in the sub-$2,000 price range use, with an 8-segment RGBWRGBW color wheel. The light source is a 240W traditional lamp that results in a published light output of 3,400 ANSI lumens and up to 15,000 hours of life in Dynamic Black mode, 10,000 hours in ECO mode, and 4,000 in Bright mode. With Dynamic Black on the contrast ratio is up to 500,000:1. This mode adds some dimensionality to darker images and is recommended for movie watching, but there can be audible changes to the fan noise when the image switches between bright and dark scenes that can be distracting. The ability to choose between Bright and ECO lamp mode is disabled when Dynamic Black is turned on.

UHD50X lifestyle 2

The UHD50X has a 1.3x manual zoom, manual vertical lens shift, and manual focus. Further digital zoom, image shift, and keystone adjustments can be found in the menu but as always these should be avoided when possible as they can degrade the image. The throw ratio ranges from 1.21-1.59:1 and the projector has the capability to project an image size up to 300 inches. You can check the throw range using the ProjectorCentral Optoma UHD50X Projection Calculator to see if it fits within your theater setup.

DLP Brilliant Color is on board and defaults to a setting of 10 (on a scale of 1 to 10) on all display modes except Reference, which defaults to 1. At higher settings, the color brightness can get as low as 49% of white. This can make the white parts of images seem significantly brighter but can also cause them to blow out, especially in HDR. To the eye, a Brilliant Color setting of 10 looks brightest and works best in a viewing environment with ambient light, but in a dark room a setting anywhere from 1-5 depending on your taste is more desirable.

Another menu setting is UltraDetail that is meant to increase image sharpness and detail, but at any setting higher than 1 (ranging from 1-3), it adds a distracting amount of noise and begins to look artificially sharp. I preferred to keep it off for all of my viewing.

Optoma UHD50X remote

In addition to the aforementioned two HDMI inputs (one version 2.0 with HDCP 2.2 and one version 1.4), the UHD50X has a VGA in, 3.5mm audio in and audio out, optical S/PDIF out, USB 2.0 for service, USB to provide power (5V, 1.5A) to a streaming stick, RS-232, and a 12V trigger. Neither of the USB ports are capable of playing media files. On the top of the projector are buttons for power, menu selection, and navigation.

The white remote is small and light. It tapers in the middle and fits comfortably in a medium-sized hand. Buttons are on the smaller side and placed relatively close together, so someone with large fingers might have trouble pressing the buttons they intend. I didn't run into any issues, though. All of the buttons are backlit and bright enough that they can be startling and blinding in a dark room.

Key Features List

  • 3840 x 2160 (4K UHD) resolution with 0.47-inch TI DLP chip with XPR technology
  • Up to 240Hz refresh rate at 1080p
  • 3,400 ANSI lumens
  • HDR10 and HLG support
  • Enhanced Gaming Mode with input lag as low as 16ms
  • Vertical lens shift with 1.3x manual zoom

Performance

Preset Modes. For SDR, the Optoma UHD50X has nine different display modes—Cinema, HDR Sim., Game, Reference, User, 3D (only accessible with a 3D signal), ISF Day, ISF Night, and ISF 3D. The ISF modes need to be unlocked by a calibrator. There are two separate HDR modes—HDR and HLG—dependent on the type of HDR signal being sent to the projector. The HDR can be adjusted further by selecting one of four HDR or HLG picture modes—Bright, Standard, Film, and Detail. Color Temperature can be selected from six different options, but the D65 setting, the aptly named default, is closest to the preferred 6,500K target. Grayscale and six-point color can be calibrated through the RGB Gain/Bias and CMS menus, respectively.

UHD50X righttop w

As with pretty much every projector, the brightest picture mode also has a green tint and isn't desirable to watch any content. The light output in Bright mode for our sample measured 2,699 ANSI lumens. [Editor's note: Optoma reported during our factcheck that this is lower than expected and inconsistent with the nearly 3,000 lumens measured for this specific unit at the factory, which fell within manufacturing tolerances. We are investigating further and will update our results as needed.— R.S.] Cinema dropped to 1,215. In HDR mode, the light output was 1,338 ANSI lumens. This is still a good amount of light to use the projector in an ambient light situation, especially if the Brilliant Color setting is set to 10 for extra punch. In a dark room, the picture looks better with Brilliant Color dropped to at least 5. I did experience a couple of anomalous moments with Brilliant Color set in the middle of the range. After a lengthy amount of time with the setting at 5, or after turning the projector on in the morning, half the image would be displayed at the 5 setting and the other half would be at 10 with a distinct line of separation down the middle. Adjusting the Brilliant Color setting would cause the separation to disappear and display normally again and there wasn't a consistency to it happening.

Using CalMAN 2019 software, a Photo Research PR-650 spectroradiometer, and a VideoForge Classic pattern generator, the out-of-the-box measurements were pretty good in the Cinema preset. Grayscale luminance up to around 50% of white was a little high leading to dark grays being a tad washed out, which was also partly due to gamma being low in the default Film gamma setting for this mode. Changing it to Standard (2.2) brought the gamma curve more in line with the target, although it was still a little under closer to black.

The color luminance of primary and secondary color points with Brilliant Color set to its default 10 were all expectedly low, which led to high DeltaE values (Cyan was the worst offender at almost 25). Lowering the Brilliant Color setting increased the color luminance, improving DeltaE values across the board. There was also a small decrease in color temperature bringing the average even closer to 6500K, from 6761K to 6540K.

UHD50X lifestyle 1

Color in HDR reacted similarly to SDR adjustments. The four different HDR picture modes mainly affect the lower end of the EOTF curve and should be adjusted depending on the viewing environment and content. For me, Standard (the default) worked best in ambient light conditions, while changing to Film or Detail brought further dimensionality to the darker parts of the image.

1080p/SDR Viewing. The new season of Westworld is an interesting extension of the story into the human world as we follow Dolores' intended vendetta against her creators. In the episode "The Mother of Exiles" there's a scene where Serac speaks with Maeve in a restaurant to get her to help him find Dolores and take her out. There's some excellent detail in the hairs of his beard and the wrinkles around his eyes. When watching in a dark room, the depth to the color of his dark suit is very good with Dynamic Black turned on. It's not going to rival a JVC or an Epson 6050, but for only $1,599 it's commendable performance.

 

Skin tones throughout were excellent. Dark skin was a bit more orange than it should be, but it was only visible if you knew the material intimately and were looking for any discrepancies. Turning Brilliant Color up to 10 added a slight unnatural look to the image, especially when scenes would change from dark to light and vice versa.

Westworld was where I first noticed the noise that UltraDetail added to the picture. This was evident in the whites of dark scenes or, most egregiously, in the light blue daytime sky. I played around with going back and forth between off and 1, most often settling on the off setting.

Rainbows are always a concern with single-chip DLPs and color wheels. I'm not very susceptible to them and didn't encounter any with the UHD50X. But if you are a part of the group that sees them, just be sure to purchase the Optoma from somewhere with a generous return policy.

Optoma UHD50X Blade Runner
The excellent detail of the Optoma UHD50X aids in the world building of the rundown landscape in Blade Runner 2049. (Credit: Warner Bros.)

UHD/HDR Viewing. HDR is still a stumbling point for projectors and the UHD50X is no exception. The shadow details in the dark cityscapes of Blade Runner 2049 get lost for the most part. Keeping the HDR Picture Mode setting to Standard or Bright can help that, but you're still not going to see the depth of field that you might get on a television. In darker movies like Blade Runner 2049 or Solo it can mean losing some of the storyline, or at least being confused as to what's happening.

The opening snowy demo scenes of the Spears & Munsil UHD HDR Benchmark disc have the opposite problem. The Standard and especially the Bright setting cause the detail in the snow crevasses to disappear. The Detail setting is much better suited for showing off a bright scene.

In all UHD material, the Optoma UHD50X exhibited excellent detail. The rust on the pipes in the orphanage of Blade Runner 2049 gave a real sense of the age and dilapidation of the building. And the collection of junk outside with what appear to be layers of rubble and ash add to the sense of despair in the landscape.

Gaming. The subset of PC gamers that look to projectors as a display solution isn't that big, but it's certain to grow with the release of the UHD50X. Seeing a desktop screen as a 120-inch diagonal is an experience, and with the Optoma, text is still clear and readable. Playing Overwatch at 240Hz was incredibly smooth with little to no evidence of screen tearing, even without anti-tearing technology. There was no question that the input lag was very low. For serious competition, it's still going to be too high considering that professional gamers look for input lag in the low single digits. But for anyone that's sitting at home aiming to get to the top of the frag list, the UHD50X isn't going to be the hindrance that we've come to expect from projectors.

120Hz on the Xbox One X is in general a smooth experience. With Shadow of the Tomb Raider in high framerate mode, button response was quick and the image was smooth. There were small instances of screen tearing along the top of the screen, but it wasn't excessive or distracting.

Optoma UHD50X Fallen Order
Low input lag, even in 4K, didn't drastically affect my reflexes in Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. (Credit: Electronic Arts)

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order in 4K looked incredible. I was working through the final chapter of the story during the review and the climax was supported by colors that popped. While input lag is higher than in the higher refresh rates, I had no difficulty executing the proper timing for the jumping puzzles or fighting one of the Inquisitors hell-bent on my demise.

3D Viewing. 3D greatly benefits from the brightness of the UHD50X. There is excellent depth from front to back. In the fight sequence between Ant-Man and Yellowjacket on the train set in Ant-Man, the 3D is completely enveloping. As with all the other modes, Brilliant Color needs to be dialed back to at least 5 for more realism.

Conclusion

As a lifelong gamer and A/V enthusiast, it's been wonderful to see projector companies start to strongly court the gamer market over the past few years. The Optoma UHD50X is the next step in that progression. It has strong gaming performance with low enough input lag that you can leave your projector worries at the door.

Nonetheless, will the UHD50X be enough for what's coming down the pike? It is great for the market as it currently stands, but what happens when the next-gen consoles are released towards the end of 2020? The high refresh rates of the UHD50X will always be limited to 1080p resolution because of the HDMI 2.0 spec. It's all but certain both next-gen consoles will have HDMI 2.1 and 120Hz support (Microsoft has already confirmed as much for the Xbox Series X), but there's been no indication that the high refresh rate will extend to 4K—although I fully expect it will eventually with the increase in bandwidth that comes with HDMI 2.1. The decision doesn't solely rest with the console manufacturers, though. Game designers need to implement the capability in to their games.

UHD50X top

So is it worth holding off on a projector purchase to see what might be with the new consoles? There's always going to be a next new thing coming, but the Optoma UHD50X is here now. It's a fun projector to play games on, be it computer or console, and it serves as a very good all-around home theater projector, especially if you have a room with ambient light.

Measurements

Brightness. In the Bright display mode with lamp mode set to Bright and Brilliant Color set to 10, our test sample of the Optoma UHD50X measured 2,699 ANSI lumens with the zoom lens at its widest angle. As noted in the review, Optoma reported this figure as low and inconsistent with their own factory measurement for the same sample, which was just shy of 3,000 lumens. We are investigating further and will update our review as warranted. Color brightness in the Bright display mode with Brilliant Color set to the default 10 setting was measured 49% of white.

When switched to ECO power mode, light output on our sample dropped by 29% to 1,919 lumens. At the max telephoto position, the ANSI lumens dropped to 2,118—a 21.5% loss of light.

The full mix of display modes at the widest angle zoom setting measured as follow:

Optoma UHD50X ANSI Lumens

Mode Bright ECO
Bright 2,699 1,919
Cinema 1,215 863
HDR Sim. 1,005 714
Game 1,057 750
Reference 427 303
User 1,123 797
HDR 1,338 881

Brightness Uniformity. Brightness uniformity measured at 70%, with is not unusual for projectors in this price range. There were no perceptible hot or dark spots with real-world material.

Fan Noise. Optoma lists the fan noise of the UHD50X at 26dB, which is pretty quiet and likely below the noise floor of most rooms, including mine. In Bright mode, that number reaches into the mid-30s, which becomes perceptible although not too distracting during quiet moments. With Dynamic Black turned on, the fan speed adjusts with how bright the lamp needs to be. I found that the change in noise could pull my focus at times.

Input Lag. Without the Enhanced Gaming mode turned on, the Optoma UHD50X measured an input lag of 43.9ms in 1080p with our Leo Bodnar lag tester. This is decent for casual, non-twitch based games, although many will still likely feel the lag. With Enhanced Gaming turned on in 1080p, the lag dropped to 24.7ms. For competitive gamers this might still feel high, but casual gamers will find it to be completely acceptable. The 24.7ms measurement is in line with the published results from Optoma (23.8ms), which means their published numbers for 4K/60 and 1440p/60 (both 25.8ms) and high refresh rates (18.2ms at 1080p/120 and 15.7ms at 1080p/240) are likely accurate. I did not have a meter available to verify the 4k/60 lag, and in any event Bodnar's 4K meter does not currently support testing for any resolution at 120 or 240 Hz refresh rates.

Connections

Optoma UHD50X connections
  • HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.2, MHL 2.1
  • HDMI 1.4a
  • VGA in
  • 3.5mm audio in
  • 3.5mm audio out
  • S/PDIF optical out
  • USB 2.0 (service port)
  • USB power (5V, 1.5A)
  • RS-232C
  • 12V trigger

For more detailed specifications and connections, check out our Optoma UHD50X projector page.

To buy this projector, use Where to Buy online, or get a price quote by email direct from Projector Central authorized dealers using our E-Z Quote tool.

Comments (33) Post a Comment
Danilo Fierro Posted May 30, 2020 4:30 AM PST
Thank you for the review. I wonder why can't we just get a gaming projector with a RGBRGB wheel. It's either impressive input lag with rainbows or awful lag with almost RBE free picture.

I've owned 2 Optomas before, GT1080HDR and UHL55. The HDR1080 was amazing for gaming but me and my girlfriend could see a lot of rainbows while watching movies (I mean, a lot, like every 15 seconds) so I returned it. 24p motion was amazing, though, one of the best I've seen on any projector. On the other hand, the UHL55 had no rainbows at all, but it was impossible to do gaming with it (and I'm a casual gamer but +70ms was too much. i'd bet it was way more than 70ms since my LG PA1000 felt like a gaming monitor in comparison). Also, the 24p motion wasn't even comparable to the GT1080HDR

I hope we can see more alternatives in the future, I'd pay double for something like the UHL55 with less lag and good 24p. We're using projectors! we like darkness. Stop putting that White section on the wheel, please! :P it just adds RBE in exchange for brightness we don't need.
Mishra Posted May 31, 2020 7:58 AM PST
Thanks for amazing review. I am all agree with your though i still trying to get the best color setting :) and i am liking the HDR SIM too :)

I have already bought this one and i have a strange problem. Every time when i switch on the projector i can see distinct color difference on screen separated by a line exactly in middle. I have test it with different source and with different HDMI cable. I goest away i resync or just switch the input on projector.

Can you help me if it's normal or shall ask for warranty? or there any solution around it? Does Optomo consider this problem? Thanks
Dustin Posted May 31, 2020 10:58 AM PST
I just bought this projector with high hopes coming from an Epson 2030. The picture is very sharp. However it is sooooo dull compared to the Epson. Its almost like the bulb just doesnt have enough power. Even in a totally dark room we strain to watch it. Turning brightness up, just washes out the color, it doesnt actually get brighter. Im not sure if I got a dud or if my old LED projector left me spoiled for brightness. No way could this projector I have be watched with any amount of ambient light though. Even with our overheads dimmed its unusable.
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted May 31, 2020 11:00 AM PST
Dustin, given manufacturing tolerances models coming off the production line samples of this projector may be as low as 3,000 ANSI lumens, and our sample measured far enough below that to warrant further investigation as noted in the review. So it might be possible that you have a sample that's not doing what it's supposed to, but coming off your old Epson 2030 and assuming you've retained the same screen size, this should look much brighter and there are a few things to check.

First, be certain you are not in Eco power mode or a picture mode that defaults to a Dynamic Black power mode. Set the projector power setting in whatever viewing mode you are in to the Bright lamp mode (as different from the Bright viewing mode)to insure you are bringing the full brightness of the lamp to bear.

Also, one of the things you're experiencing coming off your 3 chip LCD projector (not LED, as you misstated) is unequal color brightness inherent in single-chip DLP projectors. The DLP Brilliant Color adjustment in the menu allows you to dial up white brightness (maxing out at the 10 setting where the ANSI spec is measured) at the sacrifice of color brightness and accuracy (which would be maxed out at the lowest setting of 1). So depending on the preset viewing mode on the projector you've selected and the Brilliant Color default setting (which is 10 for all modes except Reference) that may make a difference.

Note that the Brightness control on a display actually controls the black level, so as you experienced, when you crank it up it brings up the black level and washes out contrast. The Contrast control adjusts the peak white, so turning it up can get you a little more punch out of bright hightlights, though at the expense of washing out detail in those highlights (such as the undulations of a snowfield or bright cloud that give it its depth).

Sanjay Posted May 31, 2020 3:06 PM PST
Hi, If I do not care about gaming, would you still recommend the UHD50X vs UHD52ALV? For $200 less, UHD50X appears to have very similar specs as the 52ALV. What would I be compromising by going with the 50X vs the 52ALV for a dedicated home theater room with controllable ambient light (black out shades on windows)? Thanks!
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted May 31, 2020 3:15 PM PST
If gaming is of no concern and you have a controlled light environment, and depending on the size of your screen, the Optoma UHD52ALV, BenQ TK850, or Epson HC3800 would be better choices. Epson's HC4100, which is a little more pricey at around $1999, would provide a significant performance boost over all of those for a dark-room home theater environment,though with the usual caveat associated with all Epson "4K-enhanced" models, which do use pixel-shifting with 1080p chips to achieve 4K-like detail on the screen.

Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jun 1, 2020 8:12 AM PST
Optoma is aware of some issues with complaints about split-screen synchronization. They are investigating so it can possibly be addressed in future firmware updates. However...this would appear to be related to some HDMI handshaking issues, and that could as you suggest be tied to a particular source and/or to the cable, particularly if it's a long and perhaps older cable being tasked with 4K sources and display for the first time. If that's the case, it's worth temporarily trying a different source or moving the troublesome source close to the projector and using a short cable (no more than 2 meter) that's rated for 4K banwidth just to see if that clears it up. If it does, swap out your old longer cable for a new cable, perhaps an active HDMI cable or optical hybrid.
Mik Posted Jun 1, 2020 12:01 PM PST
If one is trying to decide on the Optoma UHD50 and the UHD50X with a focus on movies over gaming, how do these 2 projectors compare?
Jay Posted Jun 2, 2020 12:10 PM PST
I currently own a 1080p Epson 8350 LCD projector that I purchased around 2011 along with a 120" screen. I know that the UHD50X will have inferior colours/blacks/contrast compared to a "top of the line" projector, but would it still be a good overall upgrade from my ancient Epson 8350?

I guess I'm just nervous about spending a bunch of money on a project that isn't necessarily a straight upgrade from what I have (resolution aside).
Rich Posted Jun 4, 2020 10:11 AM PST
Thanks so much for such an informative review! I am looking for my first projector for a barn that has been converted to a three season hangout area. Light is not super controllable – though will most likely be used in the early evening for movies. May also want to use the projector for the occasional outdoor movie on a camp chef screen. I am entertaining a 4K projector but want to keep costs under $2000. I was looking strongly at this project or given its brightness. Would this be a good fit or should I look elsewhere like the Epson 3800? Gaming is of little interest - maybe some casual Nintendo switch play. Mostly movies or sports. Thanks advance for all the insight!
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jun 4, 2020 10:19 AM PST
Rich, if the low lag times associated with gaming are not critical, I would go toward the Epson HC 3800 for your application. It'll actually give you higher or the same brightness but provide better color accuracy and rendering of HDR.Just make sure any projector you buy has the appropriate throw range for what you have in mind.
Rich Posted Jun 4, 2020 12:08 PM PST
Rob - thanks so much! Any others to consider? Optima UHD52ALV? Best!
Rich Posted Jun 4, 2020 1:46 PM PST
Rob - thanks so much! Any others to consider? Optima UHD52ALV? Best!
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jun 4, 2020 2:16 PM PST
Yes, Optoma UHD52ALV and BenQ TK850 are both intended for some degree of ambient light viewing and are very similar but offer slightly different strengths. We just posted a shootout comparing these two directly.
Gary Posted Jun 4, 2020 9:33 PM PST
How does general picture quality compare to a UHD60?
Norm Posted Jun 4, 2020 10:10 PM PST
The Xbox One S and One X both have the ability to output 2560x1440@120, in addition to 1080p120. This has been true for at least a year.

But one of the things I would look for in a gaming projector is support for HDMI VRR, a huge benefit when you just can't reach 120Hz (or 60Hz, for that matter). To my mind, color-wheel-based projectors may be at a disadvantage when the refresh rate is variable.
Gabe Posted Jun 5, 2020 10:52 AM PST
How does the picture quality compare to the UHD60 for home theater(movies,tv shows, general viewing)?
IPD Posted Jun 10, 2020 11:03 AM PST
Shame that Optoma couldn't put the "guts" of this projector into a UST--where it would make a lot more sense. With a long-throw projector, user setups are going to not just be for gaming; they're going to expect to use the same setup for watching movies and shows. Makes sense--I wouldn't want to go to the hassle of setting one up and then only using it for one or the other.

A UST would be a friendlier option. Consoles aren't usually exclusive to blacked-out theater rooms--they tend to reside in living rooms. And a UST sitting on top of an entertainment stand (in place of a flat-panel TV) is quite plausible, given that the console/s being played are likely sitting in same entertainment center.

While there is certainly some overlap in market, I suspect that a UST flat-panel replacement with low input lag will do much better than a conventional long-throw layout would.
Dan H Posted Jun 11, 2020 7:57 AM PST
I have a quick question. I'm on the fence between the UHD50x or the UHD65. As a family, we LOVE movies and ever since I splurged on a LG 65 OLED C9 I've been spoiled with picture quality. We do game quite a bit, and have a VERY dark, but small, movie theater area being finished as we speak. I'm trying to balance great picture with gaming features, and it seems the UHD50x checks most of the boxes. I realize the picture quality difference could potentially be significant, but what are your overall thoughts if I have a light-controlled room? I am new to this, and having a theater has been a life-long dream of mine so I may be overthinking it? Thanks for any replies!
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jun 11, 2020 8:00 AM PST
Dan, I think our comparison of the Optoma UHD65 and Epson 5040UB, which has now been replaced by the slightly brighter and better performing (especially with HDR) 5050UB, will be instructive here. The UHD65 has relatively high input lag at 74 ms, which is barely acceptable for casual gaming. The UHD50X, while great for gaming from an input lag perspective, is not at the same level as either the UHD65 or especially the Epson 5040UB and 5050UB in terms of color accuracy and contrast for movies in a dark-room theater. We reported input lag between 22 ms and 28 ms in our review of the Epson 5050UB, which is what I would recommend you take a good look at in the same budget range as the UHD65. That's considered quite good for a projector that's not dedicated for gaming, and not terribly far off the 16 ms those projectors tend to target. I think given your dark room it's the best straddling of both worlds you could hope for. I'd stay away from the refurbed 5040UB models out there, though, as the new 5050UB models were engineered from the get-go to avoid the power supply reliability issues that plagued the 5040. And just be sure that whatever projector you buy has a lens that accommodates your planned throw distance and screen size.

https://www.projectorcentral.com/Epson-5040ub-vs-Optoma-UHD65-review.htm

https://www.projectorcentral.com/Epson-Home-Cinema-5050UBe-Review.htm
Suhel Posted Jun 11, 2020 2:17 PM PST
Thanks for the review. I am looking for setting up a projector in my basement. There is just one window so don't have much ambient light issue. I do play games a few days a month and watch movies, Netflix so would want the best of both the words. What do you suggest? Something like GT1090HDR or 1080HD or UHD30 / 50X. Not sure how much impact would be between HDR vs 4k for the naked eye but perhaps better to be future-ready. What do you suggest?
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jun 11, 2020 3:00 PM PST
Suhel, no easy answer here as it depends on your budget, but if you're looking to spend the $1,600 the UHD50X costs you should be looking now at 4K/UHD projectors with HDR capabilities. If gaming is important to you, and especially if you play online, the low input lag on the UHD50X is desirable and it's still a decent projector for movie viewing. If you care more deeply about image quality for movies, you can also look at the Epson HC3800 ((review here), which puts out a great picture and does a great job with HDR while still delivering less than 30 ms input lag. It's also considerably less expensive right now.
Eric Reyes Posted Jun 11, 2020 7:24 PM PST
Thanks for a great review. I just installed this projector today. I upgraded from the Optoma HD25-LV 1080p 3,500 lumens projector. Even with high lumens the HD-25-LV picture looked really washed out with moderate ambient light.

So I upgraded to the 50X and I couldn’t happier. I also upgraded my screen from a 110” Elite Screen white no gain screen to the 120” Elite Screen Aeon Ambient Light Rejecting 1.2 gain CineGrey screen. The combination of this screen and the 50X projector is amazing. Much better during the day with moderate ambient light and at night in a completely dark room, the picture is amazing, especially when watching 4K HDR content. Right now I’m watching The Witcher streamed from Netflix and it look fantastic. I still want to get a ISF level 3 calibration for the projector, but haven’t been able to find someone in Orlando.

Thanks for the review, but I would love to see you guys do a full set up guide where to recommend all of the best picture and color settings. Right now for HDR content I am using the Bright HDR mode. Film, Detail, and Standard are just too dark for my taste.

I have Dynamic Black ON and it makes a huge difference when watching HDR content. It really enhances the contrast and makes the blacks much blacker without running the lighter colors. For non-HDR I like the picture better with Dynamic Black turned off. For Gamma, I wasn’t sure what to set it to. I’ve tried Film and Standard 2.2. Right now I have it set to Standard 2.2 but I don’t see much difference from Film.

For Brilliant Color I’ve tried settings from 5 to 10. They all look pretty good but I stuck with 5 based on the recommendation in this review.

Color Space is set to Auto.

I haven’t changed the RGB again/Bias settings.

Ultra Detail is set to 2.

Lamp mode is set to Bright not Eco.

Brightness is set to 0.

Contrast is set to 0.

Sharpness is set to 10.

Color is set to 11.

Tint is set to 0.

Wall Color is set to Gray.

Color temperature is set to D65.

Color Gamut I’ve tried all the settings and can’t tell any difference. Right now I have it set to Cinema. The other choices are native, HDTV, presentation, and Game.

I haven’t changed any of the CMS settings.

I think that’s everything as far as display picture and color settings.

Anyway it would really be helpful if you did another article where you explained all of these settings and made recommendations.

Thanks.
Josh Posted Jun 14, 2020 5:24 AM PST
I have been looking to upgrade from my Epson 5030UB, I was gonna buy the 5050UB but it won't fit in my cabinet. Do you think I will see a imagine quality downgrade from my 5030UB to this projector?
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jun 14, 2020 6:36 AM PST
Josh, this projector is a very different animal than the Epson 5030 or 5050, both of which are more expensive premium projectors designed to perform at their best in a dark room and deliver the lowest possible blacks. The UHD50X is really built to provide a bright, punchy image even in ambient light, and to respond with the lowest possible input lag. Also, it's a single-chip DLP vs the 3-chip Epsons. If you're used to a higher-end Epson like the 5030UB, I think you'll notice the higher black levels in a dark room.
Colin Posted Jun 20, 2020 11:09 AM PST
I got the uk version uhd42 and I'm really disappointed with how much noise is in the HD content its like going back 10 years in DLP not sure what the hell optoma is doing but I'm sending mine back its just really terrible. If you want it for gaming I think it's OK but for movies forget it!
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jun 22, 2020 10:55 AM PST
Colin, I wouldn't doubt what you saw, but I do question any number of variants that would cause excessive video noise in HD content on this or many other projectors, including a poor source or image settings that exaggerate video noise or film grain, such as having the Sharpness control turned up too high or even just left at its default setting, which is often just too high and shows aggressive edge enhancement as well as noise in otherwise clean source material. After calibration we found no such issues with the projector.
TJ Artz Posted Jul 1, 2020 9:32 AM PST
So, I recently purchased this projector because our media room is going to be more of a game room for the kids to play Xbox and do some movie nights on occasion for the whole family. I read your review after my purchase, although I had already seen plenty of other reviews. I have to say, I was a little concerned about your review of the gaming capabilities of this project, but then I did some more research. The current gen Xbox one X runs HDMI 2.0, and tops out at 4K 60fps. While the upcoming Xbox series X will run HDMI 2.1, and supposedly the console will have capabilities of running 8K at 120Hz. However, I personally feel that 8K games are a long ways away. Like 10 years... Therefore, I feel your review is really off, in regards to the gaming capabilities of this projector. I mean, I haven't researched projectors north of the 1600 price range, but I feel this projector is going to be a big hit. Not sure why you were dogging the gaming capabilities so much regarding 120Hz.. No games running at 4K have 120Hz capabilities, and likely wont for a good while. I just wanted to express my opinion that this review seems a little lacking knowledge in the gaming area, but I am just a console player and not a projector expert. I hope this helps others make their decision.
John Higgins Posted Jul 6, 2020 11:26 PM PST
Hi TJ, congrats on the projector purchase! As evidenced by the highly recommended designation on the review, I'm a fan of the projector. As for the lack of 4K 120Hz capability that I referred to, it isn't a knock on the projector specifically, but the HDMI 2.0 spec, which does not have the bandwidth for a 4K signal at 120Hz. And while current consoles can only put out 4K at 60Hz (as you pointed out), the next-gen consoles that will hit the market in a few months will be able to output 4K/120Hz (and at least the Xbox Series X will have VRR, can't remember if they announced the PS5 will or not).

Of course, even though the consoles will be able to do it, the games need to be designed with that in mind as well, but I'm confident that if we don't see at least a couple games at launch in a few months with 4K/120Hz capability, we will certainly see them in Q1 2021. In fact, there are already games out there for computers that can push past 4K/120Hz with powerful enough hardware, so some developers have been creating games with 4K/120Hz in mind for a while.

As for 8K, I agree that we're a ways off of seeing 8K games (although I'd expect it to happen before the end of this coming console cycle and more likely within five years). If 8K/120Hz doesn't happen around the same time, we'll almost certainly see it before the end of that console generation cycle.

As I said in the review, I think the UHD50X is a great gaming projector (and all-around projector, really). I really enjoyed my time playing games on it and I hope you and your family do as well.

Mishra, something you can try for the line down the middle of the screen is adjust the Brilliant Color setting back and forth.
Shannon Posted Jul 9, 2020 1:48 PM PST
So I am trying to put together a cinema room on a budget, we have no windows and my husband likes to play soccer and my kids COD. If we had a party we would like to have the lights on to watch a game this would be my first theater type room. I am not sure if this is a unit I should get as I assume my husband would like to get the new xbox, or I should spring for the Epson 6040 the installer recommended. HELP my anniversary is coming.
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jul 9, 2020 1:52 PM PST
Shannon, the Epson 6040 is really in another, much better projector class than the UHD50X in terms of image quality, although it is a now-outdated projector that is less well suited to gaming than the more modern UHD50X. Pluses: it has a much larger chassis with a far better/larger motorized lens, and it delivers much better black level, contrast, and color accuracy for movies viewed in a dark room than the UHD50X. Its rendering of 4K HDR movies will be better than on the Optoma. It is not as bright as the UHD50X, but in its brightest modes will deliver enough light to watch a game with lights on, most certainly if you consider using an ambient-light-rejecting screen (your installer can explain that). Its input lag, something to keep in mind for gaming, especially 1st person shooters like COD, is about 28 milliseconds. This is fairly low for a home theater projector, but still above the 16 ms or less that serious gaming projectors (including the UHD50X) provide.

Minuses: Along with slightly less brightness and slightly higher input lag, the 6040 does not have the more modern HDMI version 2.0 ports that allow it to play games at 60Hz frame rate with HDR. The more current version of this projector, the Epson 6050 (or 5050, which is essentially the same projector) does have those ports. But it can't do 120hz gaming the way the UHD50X does. Still, it is an even better projector than the 6040 for movie viewing. Of course, it'll be more expensive; the 6040UB is only sold today as a factory refurbished unit, so it's a cost effective purchase for such a fine projector.

Bottom line: if gaming is really an important part of your usage profile, I'd lean toward the UHD50X. You'll sacrifice some color accuracy and dark-room contrast, but it's a good all around projector for the money. If you want a really serious movie rig for watching with the lights down, the Epson HC 5040/6040, or better yet, the 5050/6050, are hands down the better choice.

https://www.projectorcentral.com/epson-6040ub-home-theater-projector-review.htm
Mateusz Kaflowski Posted Jul 11, 2020 9:08 AM PST
I see in brightness table that it is almost the as UHD50 which is 2400 ANSI lumens. Is that true?
Rob Sabin, Editor Posted Jul 11, 2020 9:09 AM PST
Mateusz, our sample of the UHD50X at 2,700 lumens came in below what Optoma expected to see for this projector and confirmed that our specific sample measured just shy of 3,000 lumens at the factory. You can likely count on something around 3,000 lumens or above in most production samples.

Post a comment

 
Enter the numbers as they appear to the left