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DLPs in cinemas

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by owain_thomas, Nov 28, 2004.

  1. owain_thomas

    owain_thomas
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    I went to see The Incredibles last night at the filmworks in manchester, I don't normally go there as the parking is a nightmare but they were showing it on one of those fancy new digital projectors. AFAIK they are DLPs.

    All I can say is WOW :eek: :thumbsup: :D - the picture was absolutely amazing, it was so much better than a normal cinema picture, obviously there were no dust marks but the whole thing was a lot crisper and better defined, the colour and contrast seemed even better too.

    I'm planning to get a PJ for when I move house next year and was originally looking at a CRT, but if this is the sort of thing DLP can do maybe I'll have a rethink. Now, I know that this is not some sub £1000 home unit, I'm sure they cost an absoloute bomb, but how different are they from consumer PJs? Does anyone have any more info on the technologies they use? what sort of price point would you be looking at for a home unit that comes somewhere close to this sort of picture on a smaller screen?

    cheers
    Owain
     
  2. jhjerpe

    jhjerpe
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    To get close to the same performance as the projectors used in a ditial cinema you would need to gor for a 3 chip DLP... 20k+
     
  3. owain_thomas

    owain_thomas
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    Nice one, I can see this is going to be a nice cheap way of watching films then! seriously though, how long have consumer level 3 chip machines been around? It seems that LCD and DLP technology has been tumbling in price recently, when is it likely that these sorts of machines will be available at say less than £10k?
     
  4. Boris Blank

    Boris Blank
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    Good question. The way things are going, I'd guess no more than a couple of years (hopefully!) 'til we get our hands on reasonable priced consumer versions.
    Paul
     
  5. RTFM

    RTFM
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    The first 3 chip DLP I sold was a Seleco (now Sim2) 1300 which came to market about 6 years ago at a price of about £35k. It was only SVGA resolution, very bright, poorish contrast and very noisy.

    The latest generation of 3 Chippers are 1280x720 resolution, 2000 Ansi, 3500:1 contrast, very quiet and much cheaper.

    Jeff
    :rtfm:
     
  6. cyberheater

    cyberheater
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    Makes me wonder what's stopping you getting 3 cheapy second hand newish DLP machine and one feed red, green and blue into each pj respectively.

    Lining them up might be a bit problematic but i'm sure it'll work.

    Not sure if the picture quality would be any better then a single chipper but at least you wouldn't get any rainbows.
     
  7. monopole

    monopole
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    Maybe you should have a look at the Sony HS50 (HS51 in the USA) (£1600):

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?postid=4720668#post4720668

    http://www.widescreenreview.com/attractions/eqrevfeature.html

    Yes, it's LCD, but it's supposed to be as good as much more expensive DLP models, but since it's LCD, you won't see any rainbows... (unfortunately, i see them llike crazy, damn!) and because Sony use their own LCD panels, you won't see any vertical banding either (which seems to be a problem with some of the projectors that use the Epson LCD panels (Sanyo/Panasonic/Hitachi).

    Oh, and it has a contrast ratio of around 6000:1 (measured at around 5700:1 by widescreen review). Can't wait to take a look at one.
     
  8. cyberheater

    cyberheater
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    Yes. I heard the blacks are at CRT levels on this projector. A stunning achievement. In a couple of years time. All PJ's will be at that level of performance or better.

    Personally. I want a projector with a high resolution panel, 10,000:1 contrast ratio, pure blacks, silent operation, 10000 hr bulb life and all for around 500 quid please.
    I'm betting in a few years we will see it.
     
  9. inzaman

    inzaman
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    Yep, you and me both :)
     
  10. owain_thomas

    owain_thomas
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    That sony PJ looks very interesting, unfortunately it seems to not be able to display a 1280x720 DVI picture with 1:1 pixel mapping. Admittedly this may be an early teething problem but unless its fixed I would be very dubious about buying one.

    Do any of the current DLP units make a good job of displaying a 1:1 pixel mapped digital image (at HD resolution)?
     
  11. theritz

    theritz
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    A secondhand CRT meets (almost) all of those criteria....... certainly the important ones... :devil: :devil:

    Sean.
     
  12. cyberheater

    cyberheater
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    Yes but they need to be a 8th of the size and having a single lense for easy setup. Now why doesn't some bright spark design and build one.
     
  13. RTFM

    RTFM
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    The Sim2 Domino 30H, 300E, 300E Link and 500 Link DLP projectors (all 1280 x 720 DMDs) all have a Pixel to Pixel setting for displaying 1280 x 720 signals.

    Jeff
    :rtfm:
     
  14. inzaman

    inzaman
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    I did actually pursue that avenue until i got the measurements of one and realised it was actually as big as my car :D
     
  15. cyberheater

    cyberheater
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    And they're a real bugger to set up properly.

    It can take you an hour so to do a rough alignment. Half a day to do it right.
     
  16. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    I would point out that havinng actually viewed an HS51 it does not have black levels of a CRT projector....unless the CRT was broken and had the brightness turned up alot....It has a black level comparable with the first generation 720P DLPs in my opinion. It looked like it could be an interesting LCD display.....

    Gordon
     
  17. kasumi

    kasumi
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    CRT's .... used to have one, agreed like having a car bolted to the ceiling, take ages to set up, then the settings would drift out with use... glad those days are over!
     
  18. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    the cinema grade 3 chip dlps are still a little lacklustre if you ask me.
    The incredibles is somehwhat biased material to show on one of these as CGI of this type has no where near the same resolution , (spatial and colour) of a 35mm motion picture film.

    Also the digital versions of films shown on these projectors are often 720p spirit datacines rather than fullblown 2k film scans. This in itself represents a significant compromise compared with 35mm even before you worry about the capabilities of the projector.

    I'll hopefully be seeing a 2k (2048x1536) dila fed 10bit log uncompressed film colourspace cineon frames with a 3d colourspace LUT very soon that's claimed to be as good as 35mm.
     
  19. MikeRJ

    MikeRJ
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    By coincidence I went to an IEE lecture on digital cinema last night. The current projectors have only 2k pixels per line, which is enough to better the quality of the (new) film that is delivered to the cinema (and substantialy better than film that has been through the projector a hundred times or so). 4k pixel per line projectors are being developed, and a 6k pixel projector has been built, but it looks like 2k will become the standard for now due to the cost of the DLP and the stupendous storage requirements for a 6k pixel frame.

    They are still having problems with brightness though, even with a 7kW lamp intead of the standard 4kW lamp of the 35mm projector, the digital projectors are still 25% less bright.

    The projectors chosen for the inital roll out in the UK (funded by lottery money) is made by Christie, and a cost of nearly 100k was mentioned as they have expensive anamorphic lenses etc.
     
  20. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    No its not. Even taking generation loss into account ( and remember film printing is an optical process) film is around the 4K mark . Stabilisation issues can decrease this to nearer the 2k mark but 2k material written back to film compared with 4k material written back to film is still noticably softer. Digital Intermediate work is now moving to 4k film scans as the minimum standard as a result.
    The practical resolution of a fullap 35mm film frame has been pegged at around 6k by Kodak.
     
  21. MikeRJ

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    The guy doing the lecture was quite a well respected bloke who has written a book on d-cinema , just wish I could remember his name! He said that although the first few generation copies are of very high quality, the number of contact prints required before the film gets to the distribution stage (about 5 IIRC) lowers it significantly. He did say that 6k pixels would be be needed to equal or better the resolution of the master 35mm film.
     
  22. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    Ideally its a 3 stage copy , conformed master neg then interpos then interneg for dupe masters then distribution print. I would hazard a guess and say you've still got over 2k worth of resolution on non-digitally worked shots.

    Theoretically if you do a digital intermediate you could write out duplicate master neg instead of dupes for print generation , then you've only got one generation loss but I'm not sure this is done yet

    ( and remember this is an optical generation we are talking about which is about as lossless a generation as you can get , thats why optical lithographic processes are used for etching computer chips) This isn't like copying analogue video tape.

    If the fella was doing a lecture on Digital Cinema he's probably about 2 years out of date to be honest.
     
  23. MikeRJ

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    Ahh, I remember this bit! He said that although the process would appear to be nearly lossless as the film is physicaly in contact, the problem is that the plane of the image is not at the surface of the film, and worse, the RGB components are at different planes within the film. This (allegedly) causes each copy to get progressively softer.
     
  24. johnny

    johnny
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    I saw The Incredibles on sunday at the UCI empire leicester square on screen 1. I've seen DLP twice before with Final Fantasy and Toy Story 2 in Odeon West End.

    Pros:
    Rock solid picture, vibrant colours (in light scenes)

    Cons:
    awful in low light scenes (some of the jungle scenes had me squinting)
    mpeg freezing / pixelating - happened for a split second about 5 times throughout the film
     
  25. Mr.D

    Mr.D
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    I'm not denying each generation has a softening effect but with 6k worth of resolution its not going to be drastic at a decent lab. The different planes of the dye layers will have minimal effect compared with stability tolerances in the film path. And at the end of the day given that there is no other image distribution system that even comes close with regard to resolution , intensity range its a moot point.

    The only way you'd ever improve on film is if you scanned the neg at 6k , did the colour timing at 6k and displayed it in the cinema at 6k in 48bit colour (16bits per channel and thats only to mimic a print colourspace) without ever going to back to film after capture.
     

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