What the Optoma ZK507-W is designed for
It is ideal for:
- Large classrooms, conference rooms, boardrooms
- Small auditoriums
- Houses of worship
It is also good for:
- Digital signage in retail and museums
- Exhibits and displays in museums
- Medical presentations and education
What the Optoma ZK507-W gives you . . .
- 5,000 ANSI lumen rating
- 3,840 x 2160 image resolution with 0.66" DLP XPR chip
- Maximum 4096 x 2160 60Hz input resolution
- HDR and HLG support
- DICOM Sim mode for medical education and presentations
- Full HD 3D; upconverts frame rate—from 60Hz to 120Hz or from 24Hz to 144Hz for smoother motion; requires DLP Link 3D glasses (not included)
- 300,000:1 contrast ratio (Dynamic Black enabled), 2,000:1 (full on/full off)
- Dynamic Black settings adjust brightness based on image content, much like an auto iris
- 1.6x zoom lens, 1.39 - 2.22:1 throw ratio
- Vertical lens shift; + 15% from offset of 100% (defined as the bottom of the image at the bottom of the shift being even with the center line of the lens)
- Onboard stereo speakers, 2 x 5 watts
- 2 HDMI ports: 1 HDMI 1.4a, 1 HDMI 2.0b with MHL
- Maintenance-free, 24/7 operation
- Compact and light weight for a 5,000-lumen laser projector; 22.0 pounds
- Light source rated for up to 30,000 hours in Eco mode, 20,000 hours at full power
- Supports Crestron, Extron, AMX, PJLink, Telnet, and HTTP control
- Can set to turn on automatically with a power-on timer or power strip
- 3-year warranty for the projector, 5-year or 12,000-hour warranty for the light source
Optoma ZK507-W Connection Panel Inputs
- HDMI 2.0b (HDCP 2.2, MHL)
- HDMI 1.4a
- VGA/Component in
- 3.5mm audio in
- 3.5mm audio out
- Optical S/PDIF audio out (2-ch PCM)
- USB Type A (Power only)
- USB Type A (Service only)
- RS232C Serial Port
- LAN (control only)
- 12v Trigger
Physical Attributes. With the projector on a table, all connectors are on the top half of the rear panel, with the Kensington lock slot near the left side as viewed from behind and the power connector to the right of it. As viewed from the back also, the intake vent and security bar are on the left side panel. The exhaust vent is on the right side.
Optoma ZK507-W Performance
The ZK507-W test unit delivered 4,468 ANSI lumens in its brightest mode, a solid 89% of its 5,000 ANSI lumen rating. The measurements in each color mode (HDMI input, lens at its widest angle position) were as follows:
Optoma ZK507-W ANSI Lumens
Low Brightness Mode. The ZK507-W menu offers power settings designated by percentages from 100% (full power) to 50% in increments of 5%. Optoma says that where the specs refer to Eco mode—for laser life for example—it actually means the 50% setting. The measurements for each setting were close to the stated percentage. Brightness was reduced by 10% at the 90% setting, for example, 26% at the 75% setting, and 51% at the 50% setting.
The power level also affects light-source life, rated for 20,000 hours at 100% and 30,000 hours at 50%.
Zoom lens effect on Brightness. Compared with the full wide angle setting, the ZK507-W's full telephoto setting reduced measured brightness by only 5%. This is less than typical for a 1.6x zoom lens and not enough to be an issue when deciding how far to position the projector from the screen.
Presentation Optimized Lumens. Our pick for presentation optimized mode, with or without photos, is HDR Sim mode with default settings.
All of the color modes offer acceptable color accuracy for presentations straight out of the box, but you can fine tune them if you like with CMS settings for xOffset, yOffset, and Brightness for RGBCYMW. The more critical difference between the modes is their contrast, with HDR Sim mode coming in first on that score. It also offers eye-caching color for graphics, and close to neutral color for photorealistic images. Its measured 2,115 ANSI lumens is high enough for a 210-inch, 16:9, 1.0-gain screen in the dark, or a 150-inch, 1.3-gain, screen in low-to-moderate levels of ambient light.
If you need higher brightness, the Bright mode, at a measured 4,468 lumens, can light up a 170-inch, 1.0-gain screen in moderate ambient light. As with most projectors' brightest modes, it was green shifted, but far less so than typical. In my tests, the bias was obvious only in one photo that shows green shifts easily. Colors in graphics were bright, vibrant, and eye-catching.
Presentation mode, the next step down in brightness, hit the right hue for colors, but some—including cyan, pale orange, and pale yellow—were a little on the pastel side compared to what they should look like. Blues, greens, and reds were nicely saturated, bright, and vibrant. Game mode was similarly on target for hue, but delivered better saturation for colors that weren't saturated enough in Presentation mode, and a little less saturation than Presentation mode offered for colors that are meant to be more heavily saturated. Cinema mode showed a bit of a red shift with default settings, while sRGB mode delivered both the best color accuracy and the worst contrast. DICOM Sim mode is intended for medical imaging like MRIs and X-rays.
Video Optimized Lumens (SDR). Contrast in all modes was significantly better with a Blu-ray player or FiOS box as the source than with a PC, thanks to the projector being able to recognize whether the input is from a video source or PC and use a different image tuning for each with any given color mode. The contrast boost is significant enough to make sRGB mode our video optimized setting thanks to it delivering the best color accuracy of any mode along with much better contrast than it offers for presentations. Its 1,525 lumens is enough for a 175-inch, 1.0-gain screen in a dark room.
Contrast, Black Level, and Three-Dimensionality. As already mentioned, the ZK507-W delivered much better contrast with most color modes when using a Blu-ray player as a source than it did with a PC. For 1080p content from a Blu-ray player, the sRGB mode offered contrast, black level, and shadow detail comparable to a sub-$1,000 home theater projector, which is better than many high brightness projectors meant for business and education can manage.
4K UHD HDR. When the ZK507-W detects a 3840 x 2160 HDR input signal, it automatically switches to HDR2, one of its two HDR color modes, though Optoma says it may change this default setting in a future firmware update. Unlike most earlier generation business and education projectors with HDR support, the picture is highly watchable, at least if you get the settings right.
An A/B comparison between 4K HDR and 1080p SDR versions of the same movie showed that with default settings, colors were a little off with the 4K version, and dark scenes lost, rather than added, shadow detail and sense of three dimensionality. You can improve the 4K image significantly by experimenting with various combinations of HDR mode (HDR and HDR2); HDR Picture Mode (Bright, Standard, Film, and Detail); Gamma; and Dynamic Black (the equivalent of an auto iris). I settled on HDR, Standard Picture Mode, Gamma 2.4, and Dynamic Black 1.
Full HD 3D. The ZK507-W supports Full HD 3D with DLP-Link glasses only. Unlike most projectors with 3D, you have to set it to 3D mode manually. However it automatically turns 3D off when you change to 2D input. A more important difference from most is that the 3D mode is brighter, compared with the brightest 2D mode, than typical. I was comfortable watching an 80-inch diagonal 3D image on my 1.0-gain screen even in low-to-moderate ambient light.
The ZK507-W also handled 3D well otherwise. I didn't see any crosstalk and saw just a hint of 3D-related motion artifacts. Colors had a slight yellow bias with default settings, but dropping Brilliant Color from its default setting of 10 made them more neutral, with the bias essentially disappearing at the lowest settings.
Brightness Uniformity. The test unit delivered 56% brightness uniformity at its full wide angle setting and 71% at its full telephoto setting. At both settings, the difference was enough to see that the center bottom of the image was brightest, with the brightness drop going both up and towards each side. That said, even 56% is a match for inexpensive home theater projectors, and is little enough that I didn't notice it with any image that broke up the field of view with text, graphics, or a photorealistic picture.
Rainbow Artifacts. As someone who sees rainbow artifacts easily, it's worth noting that I saw fewer with the ZK507-W than with most current DLP projectors. Even so, as with any single-chip projector, it can show these artifacts. If you see them easily or don't know if you do, be sure to buy the projector from a source that allows easy returns, so you can test it out for yourself.
Input lag. The Bodnar 1080p lag meter measured the ZK507-W's 1080p input lag at 80 to 81 ms with frame interpolation (FI) off, and 147 to 148 ms with FI on, in all modes. The input lag at 4K was similar with the Bodnar 4K meter, at 84.1 to 84.3 ms with FI off and 150.8 ms with it on.
Onboard Audio. The onboard pair of 5-watt stereo speakers delivered high enough volume to fill a mid-size room. Sound quality in the test unit was easily suitable for spoken words, and arguably acceptable for sound tracks that include music, despite a slight bottom-of-the-barrel echo effect. If you need higher volume or better sound quality you can connect an external audio system through the 3.5mm or S/PDIF audio out ports.
Fan Noise. Optoma's rating for the ZK507-W's fan noise is 30 dB at 50% power and 36 dB at 100%. However, the fan speed varies depending on the internal temperature, and I heard no noticeable difference between 100% and 50% settings in my tests. It's loud enough to hear in a quiet room from 15 feet away, but quieter than most laser projectors in its brightness range. Few people, if any, would consider it an issue for the kinds of applications it's meant for.
Turning on the projector's High Altitude mode raises the volume significantly. If you need to use it, you'll probably want some form of accoustic isolation.
Setting Up the Optoma ZK507-W
Throw Distance. The 1.6x zoom lens offers substantial flexibility for positioning the projector. For a 150-inch diagonal image at the projector's native 16:9 aspect ratio, for example, the range is roughly 15.2 to 24.2 feet. You can use the Optoma ZK507-W Projection Calculator to find the range for the image size you want.
Mounting and Lens Offset. The ZK507-W is most appropriate for placement on a table just below the screen or inverted in a ceiling mount above it, thanks to its 100% lens offset and 15% vertical lens shift. With the projector sitting on a table, the combination puts the bottom edge of the image anywhere from roughly even with the centerline of the lens to 15% of the image height above it. There is no digital keystone correction. The compact size and low weight for a laser-based, 4K UHD, 5,000-lumen projector—just 22.0 pounds—also helps make it easy to handle during setup.
Our Take On the Optoma ZK507-W
The Optoma ZK507-W delivers solid performance at an aggressive price for a laser-based, 5,000-lumen projector that uses a DMD chip and XPR's fast-switch pixel-shifting to give 3840 x 2160 resolution. For both 1920 x 1080 and 3840 x 2160 presentations, it delivers eye-catching color for business graphics and a sharp image to maintain fine detail appropriate to the resolution. For video, it delivers suitably neutral color for photorealistic images, including movies, and good enough contrast, shadow detail, and three dimensionality when using a video source like a Blu-ray player to make movies and video highly watchable. It also supports HDR well enough to make HDR video content highly watchable as well.
The projector is enough of a light canon to deliver bright images at sizes suitable for large classrooms and conference rooms as well as small auditoriums. Our preferred setting for SDR presentations—HDR Sim mode—is bright enough, at 2,115 lumens, for a 150-inch, 1.3-gain screen in low-to-moderate levels of ambient light, while the Bright mode, at 4,468 lumens, can light up a 170-inch, 1.0 gain screen or a 190-inch, 1.3 gain screen. Even sRGB mode—our preferred setting for SDR video and movies—is bright enough at 1,525 lumens to fill a 115-inch 1.3-gain screen at that same level of ambient light.
Note too that the long life for the laser—at up to 30,000 hours in eco mode—combined with suitability for 24/7, virtually maintenance operation—makes the ZK507-W of interest for digital signage in retail locations and museums, as well as for museum exhibits and displays. And the DICOM Sim mode helps make it a good choice for medical education and presentations. Taken together, these features, along with with the highly aggressive $3,999 street price, makes the ZK507-W a notable value that should earn it a place on your short list.
For more detailed specifications and connections, check out our Optoma ZK507-W projector page.