1080p DLP Home Theater Projector
1080p/24. On our test sample, the H1080FD could not properly display 1080p content at 24 frames per second. It would lock on to the signal as normal, but then the image will begin to shift in color and gamma, constantly, so the picture is unstable.
Vivitek is aware of the problem, and a fix is in the works. In the meantime, all Blu-Ray players can output 1080p/60, which the H1080FD can display just fine. So until the firmware is updated, set your Blu-Ray player to output at 1080p/60. Actually, many people prefer 1080p/60 anyway.
Color adjustments. As mentioned earlier, some simple calibrations can make the H1080FD look fine with regards to color. But if you wish to adjust one specific color (say, to reduce the amount of green in the image), you will need to use the projector's individual color controls, which are difficult to operate. The controls can be adjusted over a range of over a hundred stops, and single stops seem to have little or no effect on the image, so it can be frustrating to find the right balance.
Color temperature. The H1080FD has four color temperature presets - Warm, Normal, Cool, and Lamp Native. Lamp Native is meant to be used in ambient light, where brightness is paramount; it has a decidedly greenish cast. The other three presets look identical. Switching between them seems to do nothing at all.
Rainbow effect. The H1080FD has a 3x-speed wheel, with RGBCMY segments. This wheel configuration is more likely to induce rainbows than 4x-speed or faster color wheels, and indeed we saw more rainbows on the H1080FD than on a comparable projector with a 4x-speed wheel. If you don't know whether you are sensitive to rainbow artifacts, you will want to audition this model before taking the plunge.
Menu and remote. The projector's menu takes up a large portion of the center of the screen, is opaque, and cannot be moved. When making adjustments, the menu does not minimize into the common "one-line" format seen on many other products, so you have to close the menu to observe any changes you made. When you are doing adjustments to color or gamma, this can become annoying.
Placement flexibility. The H1080FD has a 1.2:1 zoom lens and a fixed throw angle. The 1.2:1 zoom will allow you some flexibility for a couple feet of leeway when mounting the projector. The throw angle, on the other hand, must be computed carefully. It has a fixed offset of 15%, meaning that a 100" diagonal image will appear almost eight inches above the centerline of the lens. The ideal mounting situation for the H1080FD is either a low table between the seats or a ceiling mount almost directly above the audience.
The remote control is laid out well, with most commonly used functions clustered around the directional pad. It also has a very strong bright blue backlight, which can make it difficult to read the labels on the buttons themselves and leave spots in your eyes. The backlight also turns itself off while you're pressing a button, then reengages once you release, leading to a strobe effect if you make many adjustments.
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