Home Theater Projector Shootout
Eight 1080p Projectors under $1500
The Mitsubishi HC4000 is a high-contrast powerhouse for home theater that sells for $1,299. It offers the most natural image in the group, and requires very little adjustment to deliver a beautiful film-like picture with excellent contrast and color accuracy. In terms of image quality, it's hard to beat, though it lacks some of the features and versatility of the other models in the shootout.
- Best contrast
- Black level
- Most natural image
- Light output
With the HC4000, the name of the game is HD image quality. Color needs almost no adjustment, giving the HC4000 the best default calibration of the group. Contrast is superb and the image appears ready to pop off the screen, and black level is deeper than any other projector without an auto iris in the shootout. But these are not what make the HC4000 great. The projector has a natural image, free of excessive noise, color bias, or any hint of artificiality. It is a subtle yet undeniable effect that makes the HC4000 a pleasure to watch.
In optimized cinema mode, brightness is a lower than average 560 lumens, tied with the Epson Home Cinema 8350. It has a Sports mode, which produces 1200 lumens, but color and contrast are compromised more so than on the Home Cinema 8350. This limits screen sizes in rooms with less than perfect ambient light control, and even those in a completely dark space will want to keep to a 120" diagonal image or smaller. The other thing lacking is connectivity; the HC4000 has one HDMI port while every other projector in the shootout has at least two. For someone in a darkened room using an A/V receiver to switch signals, these concerns don't matter. For others, they might be important.
|Review Contents:||Introduction||Acer H7531D||BenQ W1100||BenQ W1200|
|Epson Home Cinema 8350||Mitsubishi HC4000||Optoma HD20||Viewsonic Pro8200|