Celebrating 20 Years
Top 10 Find a Projector Reviews Throw CalculatorCalc Buyer's Guide Expert Blogs Projector Forums
Best Home Theater Projector
Ease of Use
Intended Use:
Home Theater
Epson Pro LS9600e Projector Epson Pro LS9600e
(add to Compare List)
Go to My Compare List

Street Price: n/a
Weight: 39.7 lbs
Aspect Ratio:16:9
Technology:3 LCD
Lens:2.1x powered
Lens Shift:H + V
Lamp Life:30,000 Hrs
30,000 (eco)
Lamp Cost:n/a
Warranty:3 year
Connectors:  Composite, Component, VGA In, HDMI, HDMI (MHL), Network, Wireless Networking, RS232, 12-Volt Trigger
Video Formats:  480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p/60, 1080p/24, 1080p/30, 1080p/50, 576i, 576p

Epson Pro Cinema LS9600e
1080p Laser Projector

Bill Livolsi, December 4, 2014

Competitive Evaluation

At an MSRP of $5,999, the Epson LS9600e fits nicely between Epson's LS10000 at $7,999 and Sony's highly popular VPL-HW55ES at $3,999. All three are serious home theater projectors featuring LCoS-type reflective technology. All three have popular features like detail enhancement, frame interpolation, and panel alignment/convergence adjustment. All three come with a three-year warranty. So what are the differences?

Though it might be surprising, the big difference between the LS9600e and the HW55ES isn't picture quality. The LS9600e has a deeper black level in very dark scenes, slightly smoother frame interpolation, and detail enhancement that looks incrementally more natural. The HW55ES has higher contrast in all but the darkest scenes and higher overall light output. After spending hours and hours evaluating the two projectors in a side-by-side test, there's no clear victor. In other words, which projector looks "better" depends entirely on the content being viewed. The exception to this is in gaming, where the HW55ES's 24 millisecond input lag in Game mode makes it the clear choice for those into fast-action gaming.

The big advantages the LS9600e has over the HW55ES are the laser light source, powered lens adjustments, greater zoom and lens shift range, and full-featured lens memory system. But with a roughly $2,000 difference in price, it's surprising how similar the two projectors are.

On the other end of the spectrum is the Epson LS10000. Again, both it and the LS9600e are 1080p three-chip reflective projectors. Both use the same laser engine, though the LS10000 has a brightness advantage. The LS10000 costs $2,000 more than the LS9600e, creating a pleasantly symmetrical book-end with the HW55ES.

The big difference between the LS9600e and the flagship LS10000 is the latter's 4K Enhancement, which gives it a huge advantage in detail and a film-like, natural quality. If you haven't seen it, you may be skeptical. Some readers remain unconvinced that a native 1080p projector with 4K enhancement can even approach the performance of a native 4K machine. We say, don't judge until you've seen it. There is indeed a picture quality difference between the LS10000 and a native 4K projector like the Sony VW600ES. However for most typical HD and Blu-ray source material the difference in picture quality is much more subtle than you'd imagine. The LS10000 delivers a picture that more closely imitates the Sony VW600ES than it does any 1080p model on the market.

In other words, the LS9600e is a superb 1080p projector - one of the best we've seen. But it cannot match the sheer level of fine detail and pure, film-like quality of the LS10000. The 4K Enhancement of Epson's flagship model produces a picture that is dramatically different from even the best 1080p projectors we've seen, including the LS9600e. So while the LS9600e produces an outstanding image for a 1080p projector, those who can afford the additional outlay would be better off going for the LS10000 instead.

Previous Page
Next Page
Review Contents: Viewing Experience Key Features Performance Limitations
  Competition Conclusion
Comments (11) Post a Comment
gil arroyo Posted Dec 5, 2014 10:47 AM PST
please review the production release of the LS10000.
Darin Posted Dec 5, 2014 11:48 AM PST
It would be interesting to hear how the images from the LS9600e and LS10000 compare to the JVC RS49 (or RS4910). It looks to me like the best street prices on the JVCs are a fair amount lower than either of these Epsons even though the RS49 and RS4910 are more expensive than the Sony HW55.

Thanks, Darin
gary cubeta Posted Dec 7, 2014 8:19 PM PST
How does the Epson LS10000 look if you use ECO mode and try and save the laser? Is it just a dark mess on a 135 inch screen?
Joe Smith Posted Dec 8, 2014 1:48 PM PST
the 9600 seems way overpriced as the review says. It is excellent but not much different looking than the Sony 55 and even the JVC500, both are much cheaper than the 9600 and the JVC will have 4k eshift on it the LS10000 is the one in the Epson line; I am baffled why they released the 9600; I don't think it will sell very well
JonnyBlaze Posted Jan 2, 2015 12:10 PM PST
The Epson is a reflective laser projector capable of true black like an OLED TV plus it does not require bulbs. It out classes a Sony 55 by a mile.
Alex Posted Jan 5, 2015 12:13 PM PST
IMHO anyone that is interested in one of these babies for their home theater would also want to know the 'price' of the replacement lamp as compared to Sony or other competitors... hopefully the price will auto-adjust (be dynamic) as it drops that way the review content remains as relevant as the 'real-life' cost of ownership.

Just a suggestion of what I am looking for in a review.
Jacob Posted Feb 28, 2015 12:07 AM PST

The cost of the bulb is not present because it is a bulb-less projector. The second section of this review in addition to comments from others have clarified this most explicitly.
John Posted Mar 3, 2015 8:14 PM PST
Okay, there is no bulb... so, is the laser itself replaceable? If you run it in high mode and get only 10k hours out of it... well, bulb-less isn't much of a selling point in that case, if it means you have to replace the whole projector.
Jack Posted Mar 4, 2015 5:33 PM PST
I am impressed with the video the price is a setback. Being the first of its kind,I'm sure the next generations will be cheaper, more featured, brighter and true 4K.

I think I will wait until the price comes down drastically. I think that would be about a year now.
Wayne Posted Jan 1, 2016 6:20 AM PST
Warning - this projector is noisy and noticeably louder than the previous 1080UB that I own and this is in Mid or ECO power mode. Don't even consider running this projector in High mode unless you don't care about projector noise. Reviewers must be listening to this projector with relative high ambient noise conditions. Currently I have hand built a hush box, as I had for the 1080UB to contain the noise. In a 1/2 inch thick wooden frame containing the projector I can still hear it 15 to 20 feet away. Note that I am awaiting arrival of 1 inch thick damping material that has not been installed yet. Not sure why reviewers state that no one should complain about the noise. I am primarily an audiophile and require minimal background noise in a dedicated home theater room located in the basement.
Ryan Posted Apr 8, 2016 12:44 PM PST
Wrong. We the LS9600 hanging in our store...dead silent. You have something wrong with yours.

Post a comment

Commenting on this article is easy and does not require any registration. Your email address is necessary for you to activate your comment once it has been submitted. It will not be shown to other site viewers. ProjectorCentral reserves the right to remove any comment at any time for any reason. Foul language is not permitted, nor are personal attacks. No HTML allowed. All comments should remain on topic.


Email Address:(used only to confirm your comment)

Your Comment:

(Enter the numbers as they appear to the left)