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Can a projector replace a TV?

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by michaelab, May 20, 2002.

  1. michaelab

    michaelab
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    Sorry if there's a FAQ for this - I looked but didn't find one.

    Anyway, I want to replace my bog standard 21" 4:3 TV with something that can display a big 16:9 picture. I've discounted huge CRT or back-projection TVs as just too bulky so I'm really left with either a plasma display or front projection. It seems like front projectors are a lot less pricey than plasma displays so that's the direction I'm heading at the moment.

    Having read around here and elsewhere a little it seems I may have to bin the PJ idea fairly shortly: I most definitely don't have a dedicated room and I want my 'TV' to be watchable when the room is not dark - ie in the same conditions as I would normally watch TV! Also, if I had a PJ it wouldn't be mounted anywhere remotely permanent (ie just sitting on the coffee table). It looks like a PJ can't really yet provide the everyday usability of a normal TV - or is that not true?

    Also, there's the small matter of a TV tuner. Are there any standalone TV tuners I could use with a PJ?

    Looks like I might be looking at a €8000+ plasma display afterall :(

    Michael.
     
  2. avguysworld

    avguysworld
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    Plasma screens can be obtained from as little as £2900 42"
    to £18000 for 60"
    So they are inside the same price band as a pj.

    Pj can be moved to any were or any part of your house.

    And just use a standard Vcr for tuner but obviuously need a rf signal.

    Its your choice dude??:rolleyes:
     
  3. Pootle

    Pootle
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    I know the life of plasma displays isn't wonderful, but an LCD projector with a bulb life of 2000 hours will cost a lot to run if you watch much TV. - I know folks who would go through 3 or 4 bulbs a year - so your talking about a running cost of 1500 to 2000 pounds per annum. We don't watch much telly, but still clock up around 3000 hours a year of telly , movie and general computer stuff.
     
  4. trooper1212

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    3000 hours a year is almost 10 hours a day! I'd say that was quite a bit of telly :)

    I use my pj as my main tv and it works well. You have to have the curtains closed, but mainly to stop direct sunlight. Ambient light isn't to much of a problem and the picture is still perfectly watchable.

    I use a panny AE100 projected onto a wall painted dulux icestorm 5.

    T.
     
  5. michaelab

    michaelab
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    OK - I'll see if I can get some PJs demo'd to me in various ambient light conditions. I was thinking of the Sony Cineza VPL-HS1 as it seems to be the most 'living room friendly' machine out there. Do other PJs also have horizontal keystone adjustment like the Sony?

    avguysworld, I'm looking at PJs below or around the £2000 mark and there are no plasma screens of any size anywhere close to this price that I know of. If I had £5000+ to spend I would definitely go for a plasma screen and wouldn't even be considering a PJ.

    The reason I asked about a tuner was because I have a UK VCR which I took with me when I moved to Portugal. Portugal uses PAL but there must be a slight difference as pictures come through fine but there's no sound. It plays tapes (UK and Portuguese) fine and I can still use it to record because it's hooked up to my TV (which is Portuguese) via a scart cable so I'm using my TV as a tuner for the VCR! So basically, I can't use my existing VCR as an RF tuner. I'd have to go out and buy another VCR here which seems a bit pointless. I guess the other option would be to splash out on a DVD recorder. Also, I have cable, but cable here is not like in the UK - you just tune your TV to the various channels and don't have a set top box (unless you want premium channels but then it's just used as a descrambler, you still have to tune the channel with the TV).

    Michael.
     
  6. LV426

    LV426
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    Standalone TV tuners are pretty rare and hence disproportionately expensive. The cheapest way to get one is to buy a bargain-basement VCR and use it as a tuner.

    My choice in this matter was to buy a pretty cheap and small widescreen TV for use with routine TV - news, docusoaps etc., and keep the PJ for movies. The TV will pay for itself in extended PJ bulb life. And it saves having to draw the curtains just to watch the weather forecast.

    It's probably worth mentioning that, typically, PJ bulb life is reduced by frequent on-off switching. So putting the thing on to check the lottery results, watch the weather, etc., is probably not a good thing to do.
     
  7. General Skanky

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    I use my pj as a TV and clock approx 100 hours a month to 150 max!
    The 'only' thing don't do is as Nigel said, text, lottery etc. Otherwise it's great.
    I have a 21" 'portable' upstairs for that sort of thing.
     
  8. gavan

    gavan
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    The Sony is a good machine (I have one) but like any projector it isn't really a TV replacement. Sure, you can use it if you have to and if you are willing to make quite a lot of compromises, but do you want to have to pull the curtains every time you want to watch TV or replace the bulb once or twice a year?

    Then there's the fact that the things put out a lot of heat - not good in the summer. Plus the manual of the Sony at any rate warns against leaving it on for long periods of time ('long' is never quantified) lest it overheat. And you have to worry about dust and smoke in your living area which can screw the machine up if there's too much of it.

    Unless your TV watching falls into '2-3 hours at a time, once a day' category, I'd recommend getting a decent, cheap large screen TV for regular watching _and_ a projector for 'special events'.


    Gav
     
  9. General Skanky

    General Skanky
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    There you go. It really comes down to what you want to do.
    But then again, Gavan and I haven't agreed on anything to date that I can think of.
    But I am always right of course.;) :D
     
  10. michaelab

    michaelab
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    Thanks for the help guys. I just buy a 'normal' widescreen TV instead (even though I don't like their bulk) and wait for plasma screen prices to come down or PJs to become more useable as everyday TVs.

    Michael.
     
  11. avguysworld

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    Richer sounds doin 42" plasma for well under £3000
    Old model but reliable
    Nec cracking warrenty
    Plasma has approx 8 years use min:D :kisses:
     
  12. avguysworld

    avguysworld
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    With regards to tv tuner
    My uncle lives in Germany and gets sky tv by paying for it through an english account
    But his sky dish is in his back garden in Germany and the card gets posted to him
    Depends how desprate you are dude:confused:
     
  13. Chris Frost

    Chris Frost
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    Most of W. Europe uses PAL (with the exception of France - trust them to be different:rolleyes:) but there are subtle variations in the sound carrier - hence your problem with sound.

    Good quality new(ish) VCRs have menu settings to cater for the different sound carriers. You'll find settings for PAL I, PAL B/G, etc in the set-up menus. Cheaper VCRs sometimes have a PAL I/BG switch on the back panel. The switch is usually very small, so you'll have to look carefully.

    Projectors can be used as a replacement for a regular TV. Look for models with long lamp life features to keep the running costs down - Pana AE100 @ 5000hr average, Philips cSmart & Monroe @ 6000hr average.

    You may sacrifice features like Teletext, and you will have to run an amp and speakers for sound, but other than that you should find them easy to use.

    regards
     
  14. Adam M

    Adam M
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    ineteresting question,

    I have used a davis dls projetor as my tv for some time now and it works well, except in direct sunlight. I am quite happy in the dark so often draw the lines but for proper film watching during the day I have blackout curtains.

    The thing is, I am getting annoyed by my flat mate abusing the projector and leaving the screen on when cooking in the kitchen, or just watching aimless tv for the sake of it.

    I have decided to buy a tft computer type monitor for use as a TV screen.

    Was wondering if anyone could make a suggestion as I really dont want to spend a lot, but have no idea what i should be looking for.
     
  15. michaelab

    michaelab
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    I've looked into that option already (mainly because I wanted to get Digital Formula 1 coverage) but in order to receive Sky in Portugal you need a huge dish and I also don't think I'm allowed to put a dish on my apartment building, certainly not a 1m+ diameter one!

    Interesting about the plasma screens from Richer Sounds - didn't know they did them. I'll check it out.

    Michael.
     

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