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Samsung SP-F10M Projector Samsung SP-F10M
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Street Price: n/a
Contrast:2,000:1
Lumens:1000
Weight: 9.2 lbs
Resolution:1024x768
Aspect Ratio:4:3
Technology:3 LCD
Lens:1.2x manual
Lens Shift:No
Lamp Life:30,000 Hrs
30,000 (eco)
Warranty:3 year
Connectors:  S-Video, Composite, VGA In, HDMI, Network, USB, RS232
Video Formats:  480i, 480p, 720p, 1080i

Samsung F10M:
1000 Lumen LED Presentation Projector

Bill Livolsi, October 8, 2010

The new Samsung F10M is an eagerly anticipated presentation projector combining traditional LCD-based projection technology with LED illumination. The result is a 1,000-lumen XGA projector with a 30,000 hour estimated lamp life--a notable accomplishment. The 1,000 lumen mark makes the F10M the brightest LED-driven projector yet released, bar none. What's even more notable is that the F10M has an MSRP of only $1,099. Combined with a three-year warranty and a solid feature set, the F10M is perfect for small to medium conference rooms.

Advantages

Light output. The main reason that LED projectors are not more widespread is the problem of light output. LEDs thus far have not been able to match the performance of traditional metal-halide lamps in terms of sheer light output, which is why these traditional lamps still see use despite their relatively short lives.

The F10M is a step in the right direction, for certain. Rated at 1,000 ANSI lumens, our test sample measured 837 lumens using the Bright image preset, which was the maximum measured on this unit. In a conference room, this is a good amount of light for a 60" to 80" diagonal image with the lights dimmed or a 50" diagonal with all room lighting at its maximum. Compared to many other LED projectors, this is an incredible improvement.

Bright mode, as one might imagine, is the ideal choice for simple, high-contrast documents that need to be displayed big and bright. If your presentation involves material that is better served by a more subtle treatment, the F10M's other image presets can provide that. Dynamic, the default, measured 745 lumens. Its black level is deeper than that of Bright, though not by much; it is an incremental improvement that will make documents look subtly more colorful and will emphasize shadow detail slightly. The F10M has several other presets, each suited for a different application. At 684 lumens, Presentation is a step down in brightness from Bright, but it has a cooler color temperature, better black level, and more open mid-tones. Standard mode continues this trend at 679 lumens. Movie mode has superior color saturation and shadow detail, as well as the best contrast to be had from the projector in any operating mode. It measured 667 lumens.

Brightness uniformity. The difference between the brightest and dimmest areas of a pure white test image was quite small, and overall the F10M had a measured brightness uniformity of 85%. A smooth, evenly-illuminated image is crucial when it comes to photography and video, and even text documents look better when the "sheet of paper" on screen is not noticeably dimmer in one corner.

Contrast. Compared to other LCD projectors, the F10M has a very wide dynamic range. Black level is deep for a projector in this class, partially thanks to the use of LEDs instead of a traditional lamp. Light emitting diodes are far more variable and have much faster response times than traditional lamps do, so their output can be changed whenever necessary. And while the F10M is not a video projector, it does include a "dynamic contrast" feature that functions like an auto iris would--except it is entirely digital. Its effect on a image of a starry sky is impressive and immediately visible.

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Additional Advantages
Review Contents: Advantages Additional Advantages Limitations

Reader Comments(9 comments)

Posted Oct 8, 2010 4:28 PM PST

By John Meyer

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When I wrap my head around those led lifespan numbers I get something different.

4 hours a day x 365 days = 1460 hours per year.

If the life is 30,000 hours this equals 20.5 years.

Certainly generous by todays projector standards.

Cheers, John Meyer

Posted Oct 8, 2010 4:35 PM PST

By Nic Lavroff

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Bill:

You may want to check your math on the lamp life. Running the projector four hours a day comes to approximately 1500 hours per year. With a 30,000 hour lamp life, this amounts to about 20 years, well beyond its technological obsolescence.

Posted Oct 8, 2010 6:20 PM PST

By Paul Vail

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Bill, your math with big numbers isn't dead on this time! ;o)

30,000 hours - if you turn it on today, and use it 24 hours a day, it will run for about 3.4 years. The article states that if it is on 4 hours a day it will last that long.

Just wanted to point out the typo/math mistake because if you stick with 4 hours of use a day, then the Samsung will last for about TWENTY years! That's a phenomenal number and is what I call the epic school projector. Install it in a classroom, and by the time it dies, the school should be ready for a new projector in their budget for sure.

Heck, compare to a $700 projector which will likely need a new lamp every 1-2 years, and all the labor to install those lamps, within a couple of years, even the cheapest projector breaks even for a school system. At the second lamp replacement, the school is losing money.

Now all we need from Samsung is a 720p and a 1080p version of the exact same thing!

Posted Oct 9, 2010 2:33 AM PST

By Hyp3r

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Lamp life of 3,5 years is correct with 24 hours/day of use. I Think the article miss a 2 before the 4 :-)

Posted Oct 9, 2010 12:47 PM PST

By Bill Livolsi

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Nic and John:

You are, of course, correct. The three-and-a-half-years figure is how long the lamp would last (in theory) if it were run constantly, twenty-four hours a day. Since the projector is not meant to be used in this way, and since very few people would find that a useful figure, I decided to change the reference. As you can see, the two were mixed together at some point.

I have corrected the reference in the article and I thank you both for letting us know.

Posted Oct 10, 2010 4:54 PM PST

By Marcos Augusto

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Considering that it uses 3 LCD panels i wonder how good was the panel alignment; Were test images used showing horizontal/vertical lines and how did R/G/B colors for each panel superimpose on one another onscreen ? I wish you still had the LG HX-300G at hand to do a comparison shoot-out between it and the Samsung F10M...

Posted Oct 13, 2010 2:52 PM PST

By John Meyer

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Is the shadow detail and contrast performance of the F10M projector superior to that of similarly spec'd lamp projectors given the speed of the LEDs?

Asked another way.

Is it possible to say that LEDs have an inherent advantage over lamp projectors due to the speed of the LEDs which is not captured by our current test methods?

Cheers, John Meyer

Posted Jan 18, 2011 1:14 PM PST

By wayne turner

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I built a home made movie projector with a 3M 1750 series and a saka wide screen 7inch lcd tv/monitor,the vid and pics of build are on facebook under my name with vincent in the middle,uk, nwo just been doing some research and to see what this baby can do well,guess what my next one is been powered by ? yes a 1000 lumen output home made L.E.D. engine,most likely powered inline with lcd tv power supply,the overhead pro build was too bright in places,yet it gave a good sharp-ish picture,pay 1000 u.s. dollars or whatnot in pounds,no sir eeeee,not when you can build one,have fun in doing,and be proud you've saved a packet :) good design mind !!!

Posted Mar 16, 2012 8:55 PM PST

By mapromedia

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In most situations the lamp change out on traditional projector is ten minutes. I've went through 4 lamps in the lifetime of an Epson (going on ten years). Average cost of 150 a lamp. It may be more cost effective to just start swapping out new projectors on a more regular basis.

How much is an LED replacement? Based on the cost of household led lamps at Home Depot the cost is 5 to 6 times the normal cost for a traditional lamp. I can only imagine the cost of a 1000 lumen LED fixture for a small market like projectors.

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