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Mitsubishi HC3800 -- Smokin' Hot

Mitsubishi is about to announce a new 1080p home theater projector that will be one of the hottest selling home theater models of the fall season.

The Mitsubishi HC3800, anticipated to retail for $1,495 upon release, has outstanding picture quality for the money. We set it up yesterday against the Optoma HD20, another high-profile 1080p model that is getting a lot of attention due to its aggressive price of $999. These are both DLP projectors with 4x speed, RGBRGB color wheels. So one might presume they'd have similar picture quality dynamics. They don't. When seen side by side the HC3800 has an evident advantage in image sharpness, color saturation, contrast, and three-dimensionality.

This is not to disparage the HD20 in any way. The HD20 delivers a very impressive picture for $999. As one of the first 1080p projectors to go under the magic $1000 price point, we expect it to be selling like hotcakes as well. If you are on a tight budget and want to get into 1080p for the first time, the Optoma HD20 will give you excellent value for the limited expenditure.

However, many folks interested in 1080p resolution want the best possible image they can afford. If you have the extra $500 to spend on higher performance, stepping up to the HC3800 will reward you with a superior image as well as a variety of other features--a Diamond series glass lens with 1.5x zoom range, a 5000-hour lamp life in eco mode, anamorphic lens modes, and a two-year warranty with a one-year or 500-hour warranty on the lamp to name a few.

At the moment there is only one HC3800 in the United States, so we were unable to keep the unit we saw yesterday for review. But we expect to get a review sample shortly, and will review it asap.

The Mitsubishi HC3800 will be unveiled at CEDIA on September 9 where dealers will see it for the first time. It will begin to ship in October. But this is one of those potentially super hot models that has "home run" written all over it. Assuming it clears all the road test hurdles in the review evaluation and it gets enthusiastic green lights, you can anticipate dealer backlogs with waiting lists. Be prepared to get your order in early.

Evan Powell
Editor

Reader Comments(10 comments)

Posted Aug 27, 2009 12:38 PM PST

By Bri

Any information on the offset?

Posted Aug 27, 2009 2:35 PM PST

By Adrian

Since you mentioned the Optoma HD20 ... how's that review you last week said was coming out this week coming along? At least the HD20 is shipping. If you keep teasing us with the next projector coming around the bend, how is the poor consumer ever going to figure out what to buy :-)

Posted Aug 27, 2009 5:21 PM PST

By John

If it's that awesome, it must have excellent frame interpolation! (that's what I'm waiting for in a DLP projector)

Posted Aug 27, 2009 7:44 PM PST

By Darren

Will you be making any attempt to compare it to the Panasonic PT-AE3000U, or are they in total different leagues? Thanks

Posted Aug 27, 2009 8:30 PM PST

By Big Al

Why only 4x speed colorwheel ? It seems Mit. is taking a step backward since the old HC3100 can switch to 5x if you want, which avoid the Rainbow effect for many people, including me.

How come no photo ??????

Posted Aug 28, 2009 2:02 PM PST

By Dragonopolis

What about the Vivitek $999 model? Come on ProjectorCentral. You even mentioned it in one of your articles. It was announced before the Mitsubishi price and Vivitek is known for quality. Instead all we get is Vivitek news about the new LED projector that will be out of price range of 90% of the readers price range

Posted Aug 28, 2009 3:50 PM PST

By Adrian Barac

Great to see Mits back with DLP, where they belong.

But why no mention of the HC6800 ?

Posted Aug 28, 2009 6:51 PM PST

By Nabi

It ain't gonna cut it: all the projectors in that category should be cruising closer to $999.99 by now.

Posted Aug 29, 2009 3:58 PM PST

By Adrian Barac

I know three people upgrading to 1080p. They will all be tossing up between the HC3800 and the Benq W5000 (which streets for just over $2K).

It'd be great if you could include a comparison in your review.

Posted Aug 31, 2009 12:53 AM PST

By David

I'm also interested in the offset and zoom to even consider this proj. DLP is often not an option for me because of the geometry of my room...

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