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Acer H5380BD Projector Acer H5380BD
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Street Price: n/a
3D: PC 3D Ready
Weight: 5.5 lbs
Aspect Ratio:16:9
Lens:1.1x manual
Lens Shift:No
Lamp Life:5,000 Hrs
10,000 (eco)
Lamp Cost:n/a
Warranty:1 year
Connectors:  S-Video, Composite, VGA Out, VGA In (x2), HDMI, Audio Out, Audio In (x2), USB, RS232
Video Formats:  480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p/60, 576i, 576p

Acer H5380BD
720p DLP Projector Review

Bill Livolsi, April 3, 2014


Light output. The H5380BD's brighest mode, called Bright, measured 2113 lumens on our test sample. Bright mode has a definite greenish tint, but it is useful when you need maximum light output and aren't too picky about color balance.

Standard mode is our go-to mode for film and video in ambient light. At 1397 lumens, Standard mode has a slight blue tint, but produces a respectable black level and does a good job rendering shadow detail even in the darkest areas of the image.

Movie mode, at 1201 lumens, has a more neutral appearance than Standard mode, with higher color saturation and a grayscale that is closer to the cinema-ideal 6500K. If you can spare the additional lumens, Movie mode is a good choice for film and video. Dark Cinema, at 1108 lumens, is useful if you need to cut light output further.

The H5380BD also has a Game mode, but at 1420 lumens it is similar to Standard mode with a slightly higher black level.

Any of the H5380BD's image modes can be reduced in brightness by engaging Eco lamp mode. Eco mode cuts lamp power by 27%, bringing Standard mode to 1159 lumens and Movie mode to 997 lumens.

Contrast. The H5380BD has a number of preset gamma selections, and most of them are useful. The 1.8 and 2.0 settings raise black level and deep shadow detail into the dark gray range, but they can be useful when a lot of ambient light is washing out your viewing area and detail is being lost. The 2.2 setting is a good all-around setting for film and video, as it preserves shadow detail but also offers better black performance than 1.8 and 2.0. The "2.2 S-Curve" setting deepens black level and "punches up" the picture, but in doing so some shadow detail is lost. The same is true of the 2.4 setting.

The H5380BD has a "Dynamic Black" control, but it boosted highlights rather than deepening shadows. We left it turned off, as highlights are already quite bright.

Color. The H5380BD's color performance is already quite respectable as soon as you take it out of the box. In Standard and Movie modes, color is balanced and well-saturated, though highlights are a touch too bright at times.

The H5380BD has three preset color temperature settings: CT-1 is used in Movie mode and is the warmest preset. CT-2 is used in Standard and Game modes and gives the picture a slightly blue cast, putting it around 7000-7200K. CT-3 is very blue. There's also a User setting, which is the only one that can be adjusted.

Sharpness and Detail. Since the H5380BD is a 720p projector and the most common content available today is 1080p, chances are that you'll end up feeding the projector some higher-resolution content at some point. The H5380BD does an admirable job of compressing 1080p content to fit its native 720p pixel matrix without smudging away all of the image's fine detail, though some is necessarily lost.

Input lag. In all of the H5380BD's image modes, input lag measured 33 milliseconds, which works out to two frames of a 60 fps signal. While the projector does have a Game mode, it did not improve input lag.

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Review Contents: Viewing Experience and Setup Key Features Performance Limitations

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Comments (12) Post a Comment
zach Posted May 6, 2014 11:06 AM PST
what kind of 3d glasses do i need for this ?
Vit Adamek Posted May 7, 2014 7:57 AM PST
DLP lin glasses. The best value and working great are these - SainSonic Zodiac 96-144Hz 3D DLP-Link Ready Active Glasses. Find them on ebay etc.
Jimmy O. Posted May 27, 2014 2:54 PM PST
I just fired up this projector last night. I have got to say that the black levels have been disappointing me. Images which contain darker colors seem to have all their detail washed out. Lighter colors show up beautifully however. Could this just be a fluke with my particular projector?
Bill Livolsi Posted May 29, 2014 11:53 AM PST
Jimmy -- it could be a fluke. It could also be that you expected more than the projector is capable of delivering. What are you comparing it against?
Jimmy O. Posted May 30, 2014 1:39 PM PST
Hi Bill. I'm comparing it to the Acer H5360BD which extremely impressed me. I've been playing around with the settings and after disabling dynamic black and slightly increasing the brightness the projector seems to display darker images much more accurately. I'm also beginning to think the light grey wall that I'm projecting onto is detracting from the image. The projector is now displaying the image I was hoping it would out of the box. I'm mostly just surprised that the dynamic black setting, which is turned on by default, washed out darker images so drastically in specific scenes.
Max Posted Jun 23, 2014 7:45 PM PST
Hi. How is it compared to the older H5370BD? Is it better or, as they push its brightness, image more looks washed out than in the older one? I would like also to know if they changed the colour segment size of this projector to make it look brighter, because this could have changed the image quality
Tiffany Posted Oct 27, 2014 5:00 AM PST
Hello my boyfriend has an Infocus 350 that has stopped working. He is looking to replace it and I was wondering will this be a good replacement as well as upgrade. Also per his specific instructions it has to be able to connect to his Xfinity Cable. Can anyone tell me if this projector do this?
Dan Posted Nov 28, 2014 8:52 AM PST
Has anyone connected the Roku Stick, would the Mini USB port on the projector power the stick with a Mini USB to USB adaptor? I bought this projector based on various reviews including the above and it has delivered as expected. great picture and I always use with a degree of ambient light. I would like a few more settings to play with the picture but i can get pretty close to perfect as is. very impressed, glad i didn't buy a 1080p TV!
todd Posted Jan 12, 2015 4:17 PM PST
This was our first projector for our DIY media room in the basement. We use a roku stick and love it. But we can't figure out how to get the auto off to turn off, given the roku screensaver.
Logan B. Posted Oct 4, 2015 8:23 PM PST
There seems to be some confusion between the description and the specs. Specs says that it's 3D ready and the description says "The H5380BD has full HDMI 1.4 3D compatibility, so feel free to use it with any modern 3D sources you'd like, be they Blu-ray players, set-top boxes, or game consoles." Which is correct?
Andrew Posted Mar 22, 2016 6:34 PM PST
Looking for the best picture quality on the h5380bd. I would prefer to use the user setting but can't seem to adjust to best result. Every eye is different but looking for some help on the best results.
WKA Posted Jun 7, 2016 9:23 AM PST
Projector was great for about 2 years. Then: something on the motherboard died, and now it powers off after just 1 hour of use. The repair cost is as much as a new projector. ACER customer service is truly the worst - took several days to get someone on the phone, and then she just gave me the option to pay $250 to have it "serviced out of warranty" (this is the starting fee - not the repair fee) - and gave me phone numbers of three "parts suppliers" that don't supply projector parts. Local repair shop could not get parts for this model, and told me it would cost as much to repair as to replace. Looking now for a company that actually stands by its products, offers real customer service. My advice: get the extended warranty if you plan to risk $$ on this projector.

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