Bewildered by LCD Choice

Mark Ward

Active Member
Having given up on trying to ceiling mount my CRT due to extremely high ceiling I've decided that LCD or DLP is the way to go.

What with technology moving at such a pace I reckon that a more modest, say significantly under £2 solution would be best for now. I can always upgrade again once the best route forward becomes clearer.

I've been reading through the various threads about banding, DLP Rainbows, Deal Pixels, Comparative Performance etc. and I'm absolutely at a loss at what to go for.

I want to buy by the End of April ready for my birthday in early May..

So here goes..

1/ I have 10ft Screen in absolute light controlled environment.

2/ I Use an HTPC with TheaterTek and TV Via a Nebula Card in the HTPC. I have DVI Out from my Radeon 9500 (Non-Pro)

3/ I watch 90% Movies but would like to get X-Box up & Running too

4/ Image quality is important to me.

5/ I have total control of PJ positioning so key-stone correction not that important.

6/ Having a direct family member who works for Sony, I can get a great deal on Sony offerings.

7/ I'm don't think I'm sensitive to rainbows but I'm concerned that others in my family or visiting might, so slow wheel DLPs probably not ideal.

8/ HDMI Would be nice.

Is the HS20 my logical choice? All PJs seem to have some flaws but I'm concerned about the number of problems people seem to have with the HS20. From what I undertand I need to be able to do 1:1 Pixel Mapping if an LCD solution.

What help I'd like
I'm not asking for full reviews on features & why you'd choose which, but if some of you could post the PJ you'd buy with the above points in mind I can gauge a concensus and research the specific PJs in more detail.

Thanks for any help.



Even though I'm a total novice at this, I've found invaluable. Check out their recommended projector list - I'm sure they'll have something to fit your needs and budget.

Mark Ward

Active Member
Had a look at that site, thanks. They seem to like the HS20, though they say a light controlled envirenment is need to get the best out of it. I just so happen to have one of these :)

I'm just wondering whether the AE500 would be better for less money though. I know there have been many "Which shall I buy?" threads before but I have specific requirements with a 10ft screen as I imagine this will vastly affect the brightness and may also mean any pixel problems would be that much more obvious.




Well-known Member
For around the £2k mark I would say the HS20 would definitely be your best bet. You'll struggle to find a half decent DLP at that price level and the HS20 is supposed to be superb. On a 10ft screen I would seriously forget anything less than 1280x720 resolution. Pixels will be huge otherwise ;)

After all that setting up etc you're finally giving up on CRT. I have to say I admired your perserverence ;)

If you want to chat through sdifferent models give me a call as I've seen quite a few and now own the Marantz S3.

Ekko Star

Distinguished Member
Just upgraded myself to the AE500.

You simply have to put it on your list. Price>Performance ratio is astonishing.

The price maybe budget territory and not only do you get bang for buck....the results do some serious talking.

I'm throwing a 9ft image and cannot see any pixel structure. Colours are vibrant and rich as you like. It is a serious bit of kit, that you can tweak the hell out of, should you so wish to. If you were to go 1:1 HTPC I dread to think how good this would be ? I'm using component on an SD900 at the moment and I'm finding I am getting too much detail, ie you can see the faults in the DVD's themselves.

I had upto £2.5k to spend on a PJ, but was only willing to go up there if I could see significant differences from these new breed. Of course there are differences but only you can decide what they are worth to you and whether they really justify the price. But I can tell you that argument is becoming a very, very difficult one to sustain. Very difficult indeed.

Mark Ward

Active Member
@Messiah:- Thanks, I'll most likely give you a call once I ascertain what I can get an HS20 for. I've only given up on CRT because of 2 reasons

1/ I can't hang my PJ in my 2 storey tall room.

2/ My kids want to use the room too and I can just imagine what'll happen when they leave a computer game running, or a channel with a prominent logo on the screen and I don't notice for a couple of days:eek: It COULD happen.

THis is why I've set a budget... I haven't ruled out a return to 9" CRT later, alternatively better offerings seem to come along all the time, I just don't feel like know is the time for big budget non-crt PJ's.

I'm going to put my BG801S up for sale very soon so I can't change my mind:).

@EkkoStar:- Yeah, I'm amazed at the price of the AE500 too, could be the solution. I'm encouraged that you've gone to 9ft and are very happy. We tried John Spicer's HS10 in my room with good results so I'm confident I'll find the HS20 pretty acceptable as well.



Distinguished Member
Mark i must say the messiahs S3 is the best PQ i have seen, if you were to consider a bit more money then the S3 is worth consideration as is Barco Cine 80. Also how are you going to mount the PJ?

Mark Ward

Active Member
Mark i must say the messiahs S3 is the best PQ i have seen, if you were to consider a bit more money then the S3 is worth consideration as is Barco Cine 80.

For now I'm pretty sure that £2k is top price I can pay, the comfort is that decent PJs will only get cheaper so I can always consider a further upgrade or return to CRT later.

Also how are you going to mount the PJ?
I have 2 roof-tie struts across the room that will hopefully be in a position for me to suspend an LCD PJ from. The HS20 works out to be almost halfway between the 2 struts:(. These would not safely take the weight of my crt.



HS20 it has to be IMO, especially if you can get it at a good price (as you've indicated).


Mark Grant

Novice Member
Hello Mark.

My suggestion will be to import a used DILA, G1000, G10, G11 or clone.

Really cheap now, a lot less than you think :)

Have a look here for some screen shots on an 11ft screen

You would need an Isco2 or panamorph etc, HTPC and to buy or build a hushbox.

Plenty of pixels for a 10ft screen :)

Would last you until 3 chip DLP is affordable.

Good luck.


Mark Ward

Active Member
Hi Mark

Thanks for the DILA suggestion.

Any pointers where to start looking for a S/H Dila? A cursary glance at ebay in the US brings up a couple that appear to be a little on the dear side.

Also, I'm a litle concerned about bulb life/condition if buying S/H.

I've a feeling by the time I've added an anamorphic lens I'll be way over budget and hushbox will create some problems too, but I'd still like to research this as an option.



Mark Ward

Active Member
Having done a bit of research, the S/H D-ILA prices in the US seem very tempting.
Some things I'm a little concerned about:-

1/ Model upgrade history
How far back can you go in model numbers before you hit the noticeable drop in picture quality? G10? G11?

2/ I'm a little concerned at tha fact the bulbs only last 1000Hrs, I'd assume that the performance would degrade toward the end of that time. I reckon mine will conservatively get around 4 hours use a day, Movie, TV and Games. That's a new bulb every 250 days:eek:

3/ From what I understand, unless you go for a more recent (expensive) D-ILA the Panamorph or ISCO2 lens has to be suspended in front of the PJ, something that won't be very easy for me in my room, particularly if all has to be encompassed in a Hush box.

4/ Cost of Cheap D-ILA + ISCO2 + HUSH BOX + EXTRA FITTING COSTS would mean I end up spending more than I intend.

I can't help feeling that despite the picture improvements the D-ILA would offer, an HS20 will be good enough until 3-Wheel DLP or other alternatives hit consumer pricing levels.

Someone convince me otherwise?

Also.... Has anyone who previously owned an HS10 gone for an HS20? How much improvemnet is there?




Originally posted by Mark Ward
an HS20 will be good enough until 3-Wheel DLP or other alternatives hit consumer pricing levels

Think of all the rainbows!!! They're bad enough with just one colour wheel :eek:


3 chip DLPs should be good though ;)


Standard Member
Hi Mark,

Ive had my HS20 about 2 weeks and have about 60 hours on it at the moment and I am over the moon with it. Yes it is my first projector but I have seen lots of good quality gear over the years and for this is exactly what I wanted.

I to have watched SHREK on it and the screen shots that were showed on the link above were every bit as good on the HS20.

The screen I have is an Ellie 160 * 100 fixed frame so only half the size of yours but only have an 11' room.

I went through exactly what you are going through now with the different choices etc and got more confused everytime I did a bit of research.

I found that a lot of them were non starters because of throw distance.

I didnt bother with the Z2 or Ae500 even though a lot of guys enjoy them. I did want the Z2 because a lot of guys seem to have trouble with dust and I really couldnt be bothered to take it apart and blast the dust away. I had had a demo of an Ae300 sometime ago and to be honest thought it was rubbish(may have been the setup in the shop) and didnt bother buying for another year

My last 3 were Sim2 Domino, Sharp Z200 and the HS20.

Didnt see the Sim2 and HS20 together But I saw them in different shops about 15 minutes apart and to my untrained eye (Im just a movie guy not one of your techies) I enjoyed the HS20 every bit as much as the Domino for nearly half the price. I needed the Z200 short throw and it wasnt out over here until April at the earliest and I just couldnt wait that long.

So loud and proud I love my projector and even though I hear it being slagged of on AVS my eyes tell me I have made a good purchase.

Just off to watch Bad Boys II.


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