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Why are Projectors So Expensive?

Discussion in 'Projectors' started by Yak, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. Yak

    Yak Member

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    Hi All,

    I need some help with SWMBO :). I've spent the last few months persuading her that we need a projector and yesterday she uttered those fatefull words - "How much is it?".
    Once she'd calmed down she wanted to know why 'so much'.

    So, if anyone can explain what it is inside that little box that makes them the price they are, I'd be very gratefull.

    Cheers,

    Mike
  2. Marccus

    Marccus Member

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    Hi Mike,

    Show her one of those detailed reviews of Cine4home !!! :)
    In the end she will find that PJs are so cheap :D

    Good luck :thumbsup:

    Regards,
    Marccus
  3. Marccus

    Marccus Member

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  4. throwit

    throwit Member

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    it's not just the projector but the lamps themselves

    i've taken my projector apart, and really, just guessing i'd say there's at least two hundred quidsworth if you're buying parts in their thousands like they are

    but there are a couple of things to consider - namely that they can charge this much for such a big image - compare with plasma or very large lcd and you'll know what i mean, also there are probably roughly 10-15% returns for warranty repairs, which is i daresay almost as high as merc or bmw thesedays - puts the cost up a bit

    there are too many positives to let these facts put you off though, really
    like i heard recently that a good size plasma may not only blow up, but that it also canes 700 to 1,000 watts, add it up over a few years, and seriously it's a huge electricity cost i tells ya

    which offsets the money you'll spend on bulbs and then some

    you could look at it this way, not only will you spend less buying a pj than equiv size lcd/plasma, but it'll cost less to run in most cases, and by the time upgraditis kicks in there should be mainstream led lit pjs using half the electric and costing well under half in terms of lamps

    pretty compelling arguments i say :thumbsup:
  5. Mac Man

    Mac Man Member

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    Put it to her this way... Pjs are dirt cheap compared to a plasma of even remotely equivalent dimensions.

    You be looking at £10 - £20K for a (huge in TV terms) 61" plasma.

    So when you're sat there watching something like an Optoma HD72 (easily equivalent IMO to a decent plasma) at 77 - 92" across, she'll be laughing herself silly at how astute you were in saving so much money.

    best of luck
  6. cyberheater

    cyberheater Member

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    1400 quid gets you a hdready DLP projector with contrast ratio of 2000:1 and a lamp that last 2000-3000 hrs.

    1200 quid gets you a Sagem 45 inch DLP rear screen tv with a contrast ratio of 3000:1 which includes a large cabinet, amp + speakers with a bulb that last 8000hrs.

    Of course PJ's are too expensive.
  7. Oakleyspatz

    Oakleyspatz Active Member

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    You can get much higher contrast ratios than 2000:1 for £1400 nowadays with DLP and even LCD. But think of it this way, if you could buy a 100 inch HD rear pro DLP imagine how much that would cost!.... £10k + ?
    Plus Rear Pro TVs are terrible for off-axis viewing and take up half your living room! Now that Sony HS60 with a 10000:1 contrast ratio, the dimensions of a shoe box and images measured in feet not inches for only £1400 doesn't seem that expensive to me!
  8. PJTX100

    PJTX100 Active Member

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    PJ's expensive? That's a good one.

    I'll just buy 4 42" plasmas and place them 2x2 then. Anyone know how to get rid of the cross which will be smack bang in the middle of the pic? :D

    PS just cracked my head on the fire surround. 1cm gash, lump as big as an egg. Not bothered about that, but I'm now seeing rainbows on my LCD! :suicide:
  9. Crisp_Rapper

    Crisp_Rapper Member

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    did someone mention rear projection tvs? they're good as you can get a big picture for relatively cheap but i've yet to see one i've been impressed with picture wise... unless sat slap bang in the middle of the set it don't look good, if i sit on my sofa and slouch, the screen gets darker.

    for the same cash i can get a 100" picture with screen which looks so much better from any angle, no rainbows and something which doesn't take up 6ft of floorspace in my living room.

    i have no idea why people buy rear projection...
  10. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX Member

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    They cost as much as the manufacturer/retailer can charge.
  11. Knyght_byte

    Knyght_byte Member

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    obviously it would be nice if they were a lot cheaper......

    but far as im concerned, the £3k my PJ cost (£2.7k on the PJ, £300 on the screen) gives me faaaaaaaaaaaaar more pleasure than spending £3k on a LCD or Plasma would have....

    the image size just doesnt compare.....this is huuuuuuuggeeeeee.....when things go close up, whether its peoples faces or an action moment in a film, it really puts you there, and if you have a good sound system it just completes it all.....

    as far as displays go, a PJ is the best value after a CRT in pretty much every area......could be cheaper, but then its a luxury so in some ways i'm happy it costs a bit cuz then i know i've got something special.....twisted logic maybe, but think it thru ;-)

    edit: btw, if you look at my avatar, thats my 28in Philips CRT at the bottom and my 86in screen showing CS:S in action on top.........hooooooooooorah
  12. cyberheater

    cyberheater Member

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    Your missing my point. A Rear screen hdready DLP tv has a projector in it. If the tv cost 1200 quid and you subtract the price of the cabinet/mirror/amp/screen then the projector would cost around 900 quid or less so why are we being charged 1400 quid for the same thing.
  13. MacReady

    MacReady Member

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    But the same could be said of the old CRT RP TV's. Open one of them up and you see what, essentially, looks like a CRT projector sat on it's end in the base of it.....and those things cost waaaaaay more than a CRT RP TV. But I have yet to see a CRT RP TV that can produce a picture of the same quality as that of a well set up CRT projector.


    I had to persaude my other half that we should get a projector but she said she was happy with our old 40" TV. I was lucky enough to borrow an Epson TX10h from where I work and drape a large sheet across the living room wall one weekend.

    I now have a Sanyo Z3 and an eight foot screen in the living room along with a 52" DLP set that she insisted we get after saying the 40" set was too small!

    The effect of seeing such a massive image greatly offsets what I believe is a very minimal cost considering what you are getting...and you NEVER get over the wow factor either:smashin:
  14. cyberheater

    cyberheater Member

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    I don't know about CRT RPTVs but my Sagem 45 inch produces a fantastic image. Certainly better then any projector i've ever owned.

    If I ever see a knackered cabinet Sagem on ebay, i'll buy it, gut it and point it towards the wall. I'm sure it will still produce a stunning image.
  15. MacReady

    MacReady Member

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    But the inside of your Sagem is designed to produce a high quality image that is 45" diagonal...how sure are you that it would be able to produce as good an image if it was projecting onto a 100" screen in an open room rather than in an enclosed box?

    My Sanyo does not produce quite as crisp an image as my Tosh TV...only slightly though (and if you don't believe me then have a look at the photos in my signature!) ...but they are very different sizes. If I were to move the projector closer and reduce the image size to 52" like the TV I bet it would be as good or even better than the TV picture.
  16. MacReady

    MacReady Member

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    And just as a price comparison, my Z3 projector cost just under £900. The screen was just under £200, 15m componant cable was £250.

    The TV should have been just over £1500 (we got it as a free replacement though).

    So, £1500 for a 52" image....under £1350 for an eight foot image [​IMG]
  17. cyberheater

    cyberheater Member

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    We're in danger of deviating from the thread topic.

    My point is that a box that contains a projector plus a whole heap of other things are cheaper then buying a projector with the same specs alone.

    Hence the reason why I think PJ's are too expensive.
  18. MacReady

    MacReady Member

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    Not really. I think the fact that the little projector box can produce such an amazing image that can be much greater in size to that of a plasma/lcd/dlp TV is one of the main arguments as to why they are such good value. The price comparison between what I am currently using also shows that they are not really that expensive when compared to TV's.

    What I am trying to say is that the box that contains a projector and a host of other stuff such as speakers, amps etce etc, has all been built with compromises. The image may be stunning...but at 42". Use the same parts to blow the image up to 100" and the story may not be the same. The sound quality is going to be far from that of a dedicated amplifier...but we are not asking why are amps so expensive when I can buy a tv with one built in. The same applies to speakers. Why are B&W speakers so expensive when I can buy a TV with five speakers as part of the package?

    It is all a compromise. A projector has been designed and built for a specific purpose. Yes, they are over priced when you consider what is inside them but the same can be said about a great many things.
  19. nwgarratt

    nwgarratt Well-Known Member

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    What is important to me is the final image. I don't think PJ's are expensive for what size you get. I would rather pay £1000 on a PJ than spend £1000 on a LCD TV that most likely be only 36". I currently use a AE100 with a 80" image and only cost £400 second hand. I should hopefully have nearly 3500 hours left on the lamp. By the time I need a lamp, I might as well upgrade to a HD ready PJ.

    I can't watch a film now on a TV. It is too small (see link below).

    http://www.apah20.dsl.pipex.com/pj/compare.jpg
  20. cyberheater

    cyberheater Member

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    My point exactly. You really need to be able to buy a hdready PJ with better then 2000:1 contrast ratio with a bulb life approaching 10,000hrs and at a price of 800 quid or less to become a mass market item.
  21. MacReady

    MacReady Member

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    Ahhh but they are the magic words;) I don't think projectors will ever become mass market items in the sense that TV's are. They have become a lot more popular over the last few years as prices have dropped and quality has improved (thanks to LCD models mostly) but most people still see them as awkward items that need a totally dark room and a dedicate dscreen bolted to the ceiling. The thought of cables running to them is also something that puts people off.

    One thing I havn't said is that I would NEVER recomend to anyone that they buy a projector for a living room or such instead of a TV. A projector is something that, unless in a dedicated room, I think should be used alongside a TV as something that can make movie watching or game playing an extremely impressive experience.
  22. theritz

    theritz Member

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    I don't understand your point............:confused: The only things that have come with my projectors have been a power lead, a manual, and a couple of cheap leads.EDIT: I now assume you're talking about RPTVs...

    The image-size vs. price comparison isn't really relevant either..... a £500 entry level projector will project a 100" wide image as will a £10,000 3-chip DLP - why would someone pay extra ?

    The price of projectors is a combination of R&D, licensing, production, marketing, distribution and retailing costs and function of the price that competition in the market will allow - the £10,000 Infocus 777 was £20,000 about a year ago. Comments about the "sum of the cost of the parts of a projector" miss the point, without manufacturers who make complete projectors, one wouldn't be able to source the individual parts.

    The issue of the level of expense comes down to affordability and quality - to someone who has a budget for a £10,000 projector would not consider a £1000 projector "expensive", while someone who has a £500 budget will have a different view.

    Entry level projectors are now less than half the price (even without taking account of inflation) than they were 3 or four years ago and they produce better quality image at that.


    S.
  23. Phill1978

    Phill1978 Member

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    i couldnt agree more ^^.

    people have short memories, forgetting boring stuff like current rates of inflation and tax`s on electrical goods etc..

    £1500 used to get you a 32" 30" actually viewable SD CRT tv with bad geometery and a weight of 70-80kg ! pretty much an adult males weight. they wouldnt offer anything but the poorly designed scart and s-video. there were not as many deals either i.e a £1500 CRT online would stil be £1450.

    now a full LCD projector is about 4kg, it takes up no floor space. it can easlity project over 100"`s ! :eek: , so just think over 3 x as large as what used to be the largest screens avaliable for that price in the mainstream.

    they also dont use crummy scart either, full VGA, DVI,HDMI 2x component etc.. almost flawless geometery posistionable anywhere and crucially enough pixels to make an image display a genuine definition, just look at background objects on SD material to see what i mean.

    secondly i agree about the budgets comment. I used to drive a VW which could gain 30-40bhp from a £450 "chip / remap" i now drive a mercedes and for 40 extra horses it cost me £5,000 !

    quality aint cheap, but in the case of the latest projectors its a damn sight cheaper than it was before !

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