What is the Epson TW6600W?
On the top above the lens are the horizontal and vertical shift wheels, which work well but can feel a little sticky and have the habit of jumping around when subtle movement is required. They also have a habit, certainly on this review sample, to move slightly between viewings. This won’t be an issue however if the projector is just set up and taken down again after a movie, TV or sports event. To the left side of the face plate we have the hot air exhaust which also lets some bulb light escape during use. On the top of the TW6600W are some menu selection buttons and source keys for those occasions where you misplace the remote control.
There is no doubting that this technology works and there are a few ways AV enthusiasts would set it up that maybe go against the designers intended use. Most AVForums readers will likely have an AV Receiver with video switching so with the transmitter you only need to use one HDMI Video input to the box as the AVR will handle the sound and switching duties perfectly well. For more mainstream users there are other solutions including the optical output or HDMI to a soundbar or all-in-one system and the transmission box can handle the video switching. Finally the projector has a speaker built-in for those occasions when you either don’t need sound, or have no other solution. It makes a noise, so it fulfills the definition of a speaker, but you should only use it as a last resort.
We found that the default out-of-the-box image settings on the TW6600 were terrible, but by switching to the native picture mode and switching off all the picture processing, including the dynamic iris, presented the best possible image the projector is capable of producing without any calibration required.
The colour gamut, shown in the second graph, is restricted natively. This means that the Epson will never be able meet the full Rec.709 colour gamut used for HD playback. Instead colours are slightly undersaturated, but colour luminance (brightness) is good, meaning we have no colour clipping. Overall, despite there being restrictions placed on the TW6600 due to its native colour gamut being smaller than required, the image on screen using these settings is still very watchable and as accurate as you can expect at this price point without a full calibration.
The white balance (RGB) controls did work and although very coarse in use, we were able to get a decent greyscale track and improved error results. Looking at on-screen viewing material we didn't see any discolouration or colour tinge. Sadly with the CMS not working we could only look at the improved results caused by correcting the greyscale, which brought the secondary colours back towards where they should be. But with a restricted native gamut, it wouldn’t have mattered if the CMS had worked as we can’t add what isn’t there to start with. Overall we found the best out-of-the-box settings are going to be most valuable to potential owners, who are never going to pay for a full calibration, and on these results and restrictions they wouldn't need to.
Epson EH-TW6600W Video Review
Epson TW6600W Picture Quality
That core use is as an every once in a while big screen performer. It doesn’t have silk smooth, inky deep black levels with copious amounts of shadow detail – and you shouldn’t expect anything at this price point to have those or any other picture characteristics you would expect on a dedicated mid-level home cinema projector. The image from the TW6600W is what you would class as functional, bright, colourful and engaging. This is the type of projector designed to be pointed at a white wall for the occasional big screen TV event, gaming contest or movie. The fact it doesn’t have ultra-deep black levels should not be seen as a weak point if the TW6600W is being used in a normal living room with light coloured walls and some ambient light.
The major selling point of this projector, over say the more home cinema focussed Sony HW40ES, is that the Epson offers 70% of the image accuracy in non-ideal surroundings and with no cable runs to think about. It is the type of projector that should never go near the bat cave surroundings the Sony will excel in. No, the TW6600W is best suited to being shoved in a cupboard until needed – quickly set up pointing at a white surface with the sources connected via the Wireless HDMI connection box. From this point of view we are assessing the Epson in the type of environment it has been designed for and as such, we didn’t see any real faults with the design, approach or resulting picture quality when the ‘image features’ were tamed.
Image features include a curious auto iris that was slow in operation and also quite noisy. We also couldn’t see any improvement with contrast when it was in use, because the native black levels are so poor to start with. Forget about the Iris would be our advice as it made no perceivable difference to image quality. The same was also true of the sharpness features which caused nothing but image artefacting in anything but the off position. So, with those issues sorted out the TW6600W produces a very bright image which will suit most non-bat cave surroundings.
We watched a variety of content on the Epson from HD sports to movies and couldn’t fault the image quality when assessing it as it is intended to be used. That is not as a dedicated home cinema projector. The image quality just doesn’t stand up to critical viewing of movie material in the way that many AVForums members would expect. However with that said, we think the idea of wireless connections, special big screen viewing treats, occasional movie nights and some big screen gaming will appeal to a wider audience and with this the Epson does very well.
If anyone is still interested in 3D then the TW6600W comes with one pair of active glasses and the performance is good, if a little crosstalk heavy in places and not fantastic with fast moving images. However, if 3D is important at this price point there are better DLP models available in this market position with far better motion handling and hardly any crosstalk.
- Wireless HDMI works well
- Bright images with good colours
- Fits the role for occasional big screen thrills
- Suits bright rooms and non critical movie viewing
- Not a projector for critical movie watching
- 3D has crosstalk issues
- Blacks are poor
- Restricted colour gamut
Epson EH-TW6600W 3LCD Projector Review
Don’t expect deep blacks or stunningly accurate colours as they are not here. But when used in the environment this projector is designed to work in, you don’t need them either. The Epson is likely to be pointed at a white wall in a living room. The sources will be connected using the easy to use wireless HDMI box with audio sent to a soundbar (if you’re lucky) or from the built-in speaker. It produces a bright and clear image with good detail and nice understated colours that everyone will be able to see. Motion handling is good for a 3LCD model but perhaps not as good as some of the competing DLP models at this price point. But then again with the Epson you don’t get the rainbow effect. The Epson is designed to solve a problem for occasional big screen viewing, to be simple to use and to do so without cables everywhere. That is what the TW6600W is designed for and it works.
What if you want a home cinema projector and have a bat cave?
Look at the Sony VPL-HW40ES which is £100 more than the Epson and better suited to critical movie watching.
What about the competition?
Well, it all depends on what you want and the product that suits your needs. The Epson is a solution to occasional big screen thrills without trailing cables, attaching projectors to ceilings and being disruptive to the living room environment. Other models out there can do some or most of those things or offer a slightly better image or better 3D, but with their own caveats. If rainbow effects are not a problem for you then also have a look at the BenQ W1070 or W1080 or the Optoma HD26 or HD50
Overall the Epson sets out to fill a place in the market with some nice solutions such as wireless HDMI and in our opinion succeed in doing so with a high level of technical success. This projector will not appeal to the home cinema enthusiast who wants the best possible image quality for critical viewing and it doesn't pretend to be that kind of product. Instead it appeals to a wider audience who want the occasional big screen experience, without the hassles of cable runs and setting up screens. They also want a bright image with good colours and once again the TW6600W fits the bill nicely.
Contrast/Dynamic Range/Black levels
2D Picture Quality
3D Picture Quality
Ease Of Use
Value For Money
Our Review Ethos
To comment on what you've read here, click the Discussion tab and post a reply.