Brightness. Recently we've seen a number of Epson projectors coming in with lumen performance that exceeds their published specs. The 5040UB outdoes expectations even for Epson. It is rated at 2500 lumens, but we measured it in Dynamic mode at 3527 lumens, a whopping 41% above spec. As a welcome surprise, that leaves Bright Cinema, with its better color fidelity, close to the published rating, at 2401 lumens.
ANSI Lumens for High, Medium, and Eco power, were measured with the zoom lens at its widest angle setting.
Note that the factory default settings for lamp power vary from one color mode to the next. Bright Cinema, for example, is set to Medium power by default and Cinema is set to Eco.
Video Optimized Lumens. Our pick for Video Optimized mode is a slightly tweaked Bright Cinema. At 2400 lumens, it's bright enough for a 225" diagonal 16:9 image in a dark theater room by the usual rules for SDR. With HDR content, and its lower overall image brightness, you will likely want to go with a smaller image. The ideal image size will depend on factors such as which HDR mode you use and screen gain.
Presentation Optimized Lumens. Should you need to use the 5040UB for presentations, it delivers vibrant, saturated color for data and graphics even at top brightness in Dynamic mode. The 3527 lumens is bright enough for a 150" 16:9 image in moderate ambient light.
Low Lamp Modes. The 5040UB offers two reduced power modes: Medium, which is 23% lower than High lamp mode, and Eco, which is 25% lower than High mode.
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Zoom Lens Effect. The 2.1x zoom lens offers excellent flexibility for positioning the 5040UB. At the full telephoto setting, however, the lens curtails light by about 33% compared with the wide-angle setting. In most cases you'll want to put the projector as close to the screen as possible to maximize brightness.
Brightness uniformity. At a measured 93%, the brightness uniformity is close to perfect as far as the human eye is concerned. The subjective impression is that there's no visible difference.
Input Lag. Input lag varies, depending on the settings for 4K enhancement and FI. Surprisingly, the setting for Fine and Fast mode makes no difference. With 4K enhancement on, FI is not available, and the lag is 28 ms. With 4K enhancement off, the lag varies with the FI setting, from 29 ms with FI Off, to 68 ms for Low, to 104 ms for Normal or High.
Fan noise. Epson rates High power mode at 31 db, which is enough to be noticeable in most home theater-size rooms during quiet moments. It helps that it is a constant medium-pitch white noise rather than varying in volume or pitch, but it's not as quiet as you'd ideally like for a home theater, particularly if you're sensitive to fan noise. In Eco mode, the rating is an extremely low 20 dB. Medium isn't noticeably higher. Either one is hard to hear in a quiet room even you're listening for it.
Epson recommends High Altitude mode for 4920 feet and above. Fan noise is louder for each power setting in this mode, but both Eco and Medium with High Altitude Mode on are quieter than High mode with it off. Most users will likely want to stay with Eco or Medium modes with High Altitude operation.
Lamp life. Epson rates the 5040UB's lamp at 3500 hours in High mode, 4000 in Medium, and 5000 hours in Eco. Replacements are $299.99.
Warranty. The price includes a two-year warranty for the projector and a 90-day warranty for the lamp.
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