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Home cinema heaven with Optoma H56

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Audionyx, Jun 25, 2003.

  1. Audionyx

    Audionyx
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    Hello all,

    I thought I would share with you my route to cinema heaven with the Optoma H56.

    I had been using the Philips 9617 P+ TV as my visual device for over a year with the view to going plasma. I had not really considered a projector as I felt the installation and room obstacles would be too much of a problem. I waited patiently for plasma technology to improve as I believe the current PQ leaves much to be desired.

    I am a regular visitor to my local 7oakes in Hull (much to the disgruntlement of my girlfriend!!) and on a particular occasion when the store was quiet (a rarity) had a session with the H56 – woof woof! I was smitten from the off. Bright natural colours, deep blacks and excellent contrast were the order of play and I found myself watching most of Swordfish with a grin on my face! The jovial shop manager teased me with deals and reasons why projectors are preferred and I was sold! Hell, this device was easily the equal of the £9k Sim and far better than any other PJ that I had seen there before!

    Now I am a demanding customer as I believe that any product should meet all expectations and that as consumers we have the right to demand perfection. I simply could not fault the H56 bar the very slight rainbow on white text on a black screen and only when I shook my head like an overdosed amphetamine junkie! Obviously a commercial cinema has a room of near blackness and this I would have to replicate in my home with decent blackout curtain linings. A deal was struck and so the planning began.

    My TV was rented so I arranged collection and rearranged the room to suit the new equipment. I purchased a new 28” Panasonic (TX28PS1) for normal duties and placed it in the corner. Later that week the gear arrived and with child-like excitement began installation. A 5’ wide Owl electric screen was mounted on a redundant chimney stack, levelled and centred for optimum viewing. The shop manager, Lee popped round on the evening and as I intoxicated him with fine wines, optimised the projector mountings (fortunately he remained professionally sober!!). Voila! The moment of truth arrived. I banged Monsters Inc into my Pioneer 757 and via lowly s-video the picture appeared and I was spellbound! Other films showed similar excellence and since the install, I have a Chord component cable which has served to transmit a more faithful signal! It has become apparent that with higher quality equipment, the picture is more faithful to the disc – therefore garbage in, garbage out but well mastered discs are a vision of wonder!

    In my experience with AV, I have learnt discipline on where to draw the line. This hobby can become an obsession and reading other posts and from friend’s experiences, I can only suggest that rather than breaking the bank for the greatest equipment which can be pointless in most domestic environments, is it nor wiser to spend the money on what really matters – films and music!! It is said that life is all about finding balance and equilibrium – now about that new car!!

    I can only reiterate how impressed I am with this projector and express sincere thanks to Stuart Acey (Sales/Marketing manager at Optoma) and Lee at Sevenoaks for their professional and qualified advice. Also thanks go to the many members who have posted their experiences and experimentations, without which I would still be scratching my head!

    At the end of that evening and after several glasses of wine to quote from the Fast Show’s Rowley Birkin QC “I am afraid I was very very drunk!”

    Regards

    Darren
     
  2. cyberheater

    cyberheater
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    A great post Mad. Glad your finally happy. I'm a born tweaker and an obsessive to boot. This is a perfect hobby for me.
    I already dream of my next house with dedicated cinema room.... :)
     
  3. Ice

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    Hi Mad,

    I have read about the Optoma H55, but never have seen either that model or the newer H56. From your views, I think I may pop in to my local Sevenoaks to have a look before buying a projector!

    I often spend time trying to find the right cost/benefit balance, and am always careful not to overspend, although it can be tempting at times!

    Out of interest, how well does it cope with standard TV broadcasts?

    Cheers,
    Ice :cool:
     
  4. Audionyx

    Audionyx
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    Ice,

    Many posts have been submitted regarding the poor picture quality of off air broadcasts due to lower resolution and in the case of sky compression and bit rates. For this reason, I continue to use a 28" TV for normal use. Trouble is with projectors and plasmas, they are prone to highlight the artifacts that Tv's tend to smooth over.

    Until we get a high defintion broadcast standard I would stick to the old phosphor bowl for the time being!

    You will be very impressed by the H56. It does take a bit of pampering to set up correctly and align with the screen. Our house is nearly 200 years old and each room is not orthogonal! When funds permit I may seek out the expert services (Gordon convergeant A/V) to extract the best from my system. I have found that it is better to use the de-interlacer in the DVD (NTSC only at the moment - Pioneer are working on PAL prog) other than SIl504 in projector. Having said that, PAL discs are sen-effing-sational!!!

    Good luck and I hope you like it!

    Regards


    Darren
     

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