Optoma HD600X Mini Review

Oakleyspatz

Well-known Member
I recently purchased this relatively new but already popular DLP projector even though there was very limited information to be found about it online. Even now, there are very few reviews on the HD600X so I thought I would post a short review myself. I have had many projectors before but have not had one for a few years, my last being an Infocus Screenplay 7210...Just how far have they advanced since then?...These are my thoughts.....

The Projector
The Optoma is small, very small. It's footprint is smaller than an A4 sheet of paper, actually only slightly larger than an A5. This means it would easily sit on a bookshelf or small lamp table. It comes in charcoal black and looks purposeful rather than elegant. The lens is slightly recessed and makes adjusting focus slightly fiddly as you need to get your fingers 'inside' the recess to turn the lens. The zoom is much easier to adjust as it is a small lever on top of the unit just above the lens although the amount of adjustment is very limited so placement of the projector is critical to make the image fit the screen accurately.
Connections on the back includes a single 1.3a HDMI socket, a VGA socket, (a small VGA-Component adapter is included in the accessories) Composite video, S-Video and audio phono sockets. There is a built in speaker, but unless you are watching in your bedroom, it's best to avoid as the sound is tinny at best. The remote is small, curvy and white. It is backlit in blue and all adjustments can be accessed from it although it should be noted that the zoom and focus are both manually adjusted only.
Although I mentioned that the size of the unit is small and would easily sit on a bookshelf, the bottom of the projected image starts at the same height as the lens itself so the shelf would either need to be quite low or the projector would need to be inverted if the shelf was high. The build quality seems a little 'plastic' although this is to be expected when you consider the price of the unit. It's by no means badly made, it just feels like it is a budget model....which it is really!
But does the performance give away its budget status too?....

Image Quality
When I first fired up the projector onto my 92" Panoview Graywolf High Contrast screen, I was greeted by a bright, high contrast and vivid image. The black level was the first thing I was impressed by and from memory, far better than my previous Infocus 7210 had. The Optoma has Texas Instruments' Brilliant Colour technology incorporated which basically adds additional colour segments to the colour wheel that are supposed to make colours more vivid, increase the amount of colours the projector can reproduce, give smoother gradients and better at achieving difficult tones such as yellows and cyans. That's the claim anyway. In practice, Brilliant Colour does indeed boost colour saturation, gives a brighter high contrast image and produces dazzling, vivid colours but it also introduces some nasty artifacts that are not always visible, but when they rear their ugly head, they are very visible.
In certain scenes such as those featuring blue skies, snow, bright sunlight etc. you can notice what I can only describe as solarisation. What should be a smooth area of colour with smooth transitions between shades appears as pixelated areas with definite steps between shades. The movie I noticed it the most in was the Pixar film UP. Once the lead character gets airborne, the skies are filled with jumping, moving areas of pixelated colour.
Turning the Brilliant Colour down to zero (0-10 is the adjustment) reduces this problem but doesn't completely irradicate it. I have tried several different ways of replaying this movie using different players, different leads and even watching the Sky HD version and it always does it. I tried the same scene on my friend's Infocus In72 and the skies were as smooth as silk so I know it is the projector causing this and not any other link in the chain.
Optoma tell me this is a fault and have collected the unit for 'repair'. But I know at least one other person with the same projector who has noticed the same problem so I am thinking it is an inherent side effect of the Brilliant Colour technology.
I would be very interested to hear from any other HD600X owners who can test this movie and tell me if they too have the same problem, or not.
OK, that is the only real problem with the image and to be honest, it isn't noticeable for 99% of the time, but when it is there, it is a real problem.
Assuming this is a fault and can be cured, most other areas of the image are quite brilliant considering the price of the projector. Blacks are deep, colours are vivid but natural looking, sharpness and detail are excellent (although getting the focus just right takes some doing as the focus 'sweet spot' is very small and slightly off either side instantly softens the image quite noticeably).
The projector is rated at 1600 lumens and 3500:1 contrast ratio (350:1 ANSI) This is more than enough to produce a dazzling image up to 100" in a light controlled room. In bright mode, the image is still superb and contrast doesn't seem to suffer at all. But the fan does increase and the noise is quite loud but nothing too bad if you are also running a surround sound set-up (which you should be!). If it wasn't for the fact that it shortens the bulb life, I would quite happily run it in bright mode as it tends to open up the detail in darker scenes better. The Optoma does have a form of iris which can be turned off or on, but instead of the lens aperture adjusting to brighten/dim the image, the bulb's brightness goes from standard to bright depending on the scene. This is not only noticeable visually, but also audibly as the fan changes speed as the lamp goes bright.
Basically, it's very crude and worth avoiding at all costs, in my opinion.
RBE or the Rainbow effect is definitely there but as everyone is affected by this differently, it is best to either test one before you buy, or go on previous experience. If you are usually bothered by this, then you will almost certainly be bothered by the Optoma, if you usually aren't then you should be ok. From memory, it is slightly worse than my old Infocus but nothing too bad for me.
Finally it will accept a 1080p/24 signal from a Blu-Ray player which helps smooth onscreen motion (less jerky pans across screen for example).

3D Compatibility

The HD600X's biggest selling point is it's 3D credentials. It won't display 3D from Sky3D nor Blu-Ray out of the box but with the addition of the yet to be released Optoma 3D-XL adapter (due early March 2011 for approx £250) it will display all the 3D you can throw at it. It works with DLP Link Glasses and a single pair will come with the 3D-XL but individual pairs can be bought for about £70.
Early reports suggest the HD600X just isn't bright enough for satisfying 3D playback, but this may just be speculation and until we have the adapter released then we will just have to wait and see.

Conclusion
I paid £385 for my Optoma and I think it was money well spent. Even if the 3D aspect turns out to be a complete let down, it's 2D performance is still worthy of its price. I am hoping that Optoma can cure the only flaw I have mentioned but I'm not holding my breath. Assuming they cannot fix it, I will just have to turn off Brilliant Colour for certain movies and live with it. The Brilliant Colour does improve contrast and gives the image more 'snap' and turning it off makes the image look a little flat but like I said, I've only really noticed this problem with any severity in one movie so its not the end of the world. Overall I am happy with my purchase and would recommend anyone who is looking to buy their first projector or buying on a budget to give it serious consideration. 8 out of 10 (would be 10 out of 10 if this problem was solved)

I will keep you posted on what Optoma do/can't do with my unit when I get it back in a week or so and please let me know if you too have noticed this problem.

Danny

The image below was taken in a fairly well lit room with light magnolia walls and the image was still more than watchable. In a darkened room, it is quite stunning!!
 

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DrugstoreCowboy

Novice Member
Dropping the contrast down should clear up the clipping, it does on my Mitsubishi, kind of defeats the purpose of BC though.
 

kbfern

Distinguished Member
Nice review Danny which should give potential owners an insight into this great value projector.:thumbsup:
 

Oakleyspatz

Well-known Member
Dropping the contrast down should clear up the clipping, it does on my Mitsubishi, kind of defeats the purpose of BC though.

So you notice something similar on your Mitsubishi do you? That kind of backs up my belief that it is an inherent problem with BC itself and not specifically my projector. I did have a Mitsubishi HC4000 a few years back and I can remember something similar on that too which also had Brilliant Colour.
 

kbfern

Distinguished Member
Yes you wonder why sometimes these fancy features are designed as they so often come up short when you use them.

Dynamic irises, frame creation, BC amongst other features are generally best left turned off.
 

Woody26

Active Member
I've got one of these too and I think the picture quality is superb. The only thing I did notice which maybe nothing, was the fan noise once it starts up, its a bit louder than I thought it would be. Checked all settings and everything looks as should be, it's not mounted on a shelf or anything.
 

MQUIN SKYWALKER

Active Member
WELL i had a ep720 with a hd fury and thought it was the dogs nads,but as soon as i got one of these OMG its amazing
 

kmanmx

Active Member
I got this projector for Christmas too. I came on here a lot for the few months prior to Christmas to help decide.

I love it! I also get the issues with obvious jumps in color shades, particularly on sky scenes.

After a few hours of tinkering with the settings on the BBC Documentry Yellowstone i think i have the settings pretty much right. I can't get it perfect, if i have the contrast and brightness high enough to show all the shadow detail which the camera has captured, the blacks suffer and clouds/snow are totally blown out. If i lower it so they are not blown out at all then i loose quite a bit of shadow detail. But i think i found the sweet spot where i get most the shadow details 90percent of the time and whites ain't blown out 90percent of the time either :)

The only issue i have found is that over a day or two it goes slightly out of focus, only a tiny amount. If you go right up to the screen it is sharp enough to make out the individual pixels easily, but you notice they are not as sharp crisp squares as they were a few days ago. Twist the focus ring by 2 or 3mm and you are back in business. I've heard of this on other PJ's though.
 

Oakleyspatz

Well-known Member
I got this projector for Christmas too. I came on here a lot for the few months prior to Christmas to help decide.

I love it! I also get the issues with obvious jumps in color shades, particularly on sky scenes.

After a few hours of tinkering with the settings on the BBC Documentry Yellowstone i think i have the settings pretty much right. I can't get it perfect, if i have the contrast and brightness high enough to show all the shadow detail which the camera has captured, the blacks suffer and clouds/snow are totally blown out. If i lower it so they are not blown out at all then i loose quite a bit of shadow detail. But i think i found the sweet spot where i get most the shadow details 90percent of the time and whites ain't blown out 90percent of the time either :)

The only issue i have found is that over a day or two it goes slightly out of focus, only a tiny amount. If you go right up to the screen it is sharp enough to make out the individual pixels easily, but you notice they are not as sharp crisp squares as they were a few days ago. Twist the focus ring by 2 or 3mm and you are back in business. I've heard of this on other PJ's though.

Thanks for your input kmanmx, so once again, it seems that the Brilliant Colour itself is the cause of this problem and not an actual fault with the projector. I cannot wait to see what Optoma say as they have agreed there is a fault and this is not acceptable, but it looks like they will not be able to do anything to remove it so what will they say? You can have your money back! or maybe, we'll give you a 1080p model as compensation!!
I can dream can't I?
But what amazes me, is if you read up on this Brilliant Colour technology by Texas Instruments, it is supposed to improve the exact problems it seems to be causing. It says you get smoother gradients, wider colour gamut and better colour reproduction....Well, large areas of pixelated, blocking, dancing colours where there should be silky smooth tones seems like it's failed badly!!
 

s_inman

Well-known Member
Great review!

Also I have turned BC off on my HD66, it does nothing for the picture in my opinion :).
 

JC4PM

Active Member
I'd like to chime in here, being as there's no owners thread.

I am now the proud owner of the HD600X!!!!! :clap:

Oh, baby, I can't frikkin wait to connect up all the bits and play. Off to buy HDMI cables tomorrow, then rearrange the living room and fire up this bad boy. :arty:
 

JC4PM

Active Member
HOLY CRAP!! Just got my 1st PJ set up, big wow!
Colours amazing, screen crisp. I'm lucky, I got a wide living room, my picture must be some 150 inches. This is great!
Set up is easy. The 600X is damned fine, I'm typing this from my netbook onto the wall with the lights on, and there's no issue.
Didn't realise the thing had inbuilt speakers, they aren't exactly loud, but it'll do until I get the surround sound system sorted.

Next step, putting together the AVr. woot woot lol :)

Thanks to everyone who gave me advice. Best 390£ i've ever spent.
 
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alfixy

Standard Member
In practice, Brilliant Colour does indeed boost colour saturation, gives a brighter high contrast image and produces dazzling, vivid colours but it also introduces some nasty artifacts that are not always visible, but when they rear their ugly head, they are very visible.
In certain scenes such as those featuring blue skies, snow, bright sunlight etc. you can notice what I can only describe as solarisation. What should be a smooth area of colour with smooth transitions between shades appears as pixelated areas with definite steps between shades. The movie I noticed it the most in was the Pixar film UP. Once the lead character gets airborne, the skies are filled with jumping, moving areas of pixelated colour.
Turning the Brilliant Colour down to zero (0-10 is the adjustment) reduces this problem but doesn't completely irradicate it. I have tried several different ways of replaying this movie using different players, different leads and even watching the Sky HD version and it always does it. I tried the same scene on my friend's Infocus In72 and the skies were as smooth as silk so I know it is the projector causing this and not any other link in the chain.
Optoma tell me this is a fault and have collected the unit for 'repair'. But I know at least one other person with the same projector who has noticed the same problem so I am thinking it is an inherent side effect of the Brilliant Colour technology.
I would be very interested to hear from any other HD600X owners who can test this movie and tell me if they too have the same problem, or not.

Hello,

i´m new to your forum and i apologize my mistakes in english language, but i´m naturally german speaking...

I´ve found your topic with the colour solarization issues of the Optoma HD600x, and i experience the same colour fringings
with my Optoma HD600x (bought in january 2011).

Moving the slider of "BrilliantColor" up to 10 increases the contrast and brightness to very bright and living values,
but it also increases the colour fringings also in skin colours.

My way was to decrease the value of BrilliantColor downto 0. This reduces the appearance of color fringing.

But i was scared to see extensive colour fringings in the blue sky scenes of the fourth "Shrek" movie (played on BluRay)
although "BrilliantColor" was set to 0.

Only the decrease of contrast to a very low value (app. 30-40) could limit the color fringings, but they couldn´t be
avoided completely.

But in this setup, the picture is very dark and flat, you could say "lifeless".

1.Question:
I wanted to ask you about the results of the Optoma service work with your beamer.
Are the color fringings and solarization issues history or are they present also after the repair?
The issue seems to come up especially in blue colours and tones.


2. Question:
There seems to be an additional problem:

When switching to 3D, the beamer is pushing the value of "BrilliantColor" to 10 everytime it is switched to 3D.
The value doesn´t seem to be stored for the 3D-mode.
(i don´t make usage of DLP-Link, i use the IR-3D-option in association with the 3D-XL-Box and VESA compatible shutter glasses)

So the picture is very bright (needed because of the shutter glasses), but produces also the colour issue.
The value of "BrilliantColor" must be set to 0 manually each time you watch 3D content. And after this.. the picture
is more flat bacause of the additional light reduction by the shutter glasses...

3.Question
Does anyone know if the Acer H5360 or eMaschine V700 also have this colour fringing issue?

4.Question:
is there any firmware upgrade available...which could reduce the colour issue?

Thanks for your patience

and greetings

Alfi
 

Oakleyspatz

Well-known Member
Hello,

i´m new to your forum and i apologize my mistakes in english language, but i´m naturally german speaking...

I´ve found your topic with the colour solarization issues of the Optoma HD600x, and i experience the same colour fringings
with my Optoma HD600x (bought in january 2011).

Moving the slider of "BrilliantColor" up to 10 increases the contrast and brightness to very bright and living values,
but it also increases the colour fringings also in skin colours.

My way was to decrease the value of BrilliantColor downto 0. This reduces the appearance of color fringing.

But i was scared to see extensive colour fringings in the blue sky scenes of the fourth "Shrek" movie (played on BluRay)
although "BrilliantColor" was set to 0.

Only the decrease of contrast to a very low value (app. 30-40) could limit the color fringings, but they couldn´t be
avoided completely.

But in this setup, the picture is very dark and flat, you could say "lifeless".

1.Question:
I wanted to ask you about the results of the Optoma service work with your beamer.
Are the color fringings and solarization issues history or are they present also after the repair?
The issue seems to come up especially in blue colours and tones.


2. Question:
There seems to be an additional problem:

When switching to 3D, the beamer is pushing the value of "BrilliantColor" to 10 everytime it is switched to 3D.
The value doesn´t seem to be stored for the 3D-mode.
(i don´t make usage of DLP-Link, i use the IR-3D-option in association with the 3D-XL-Box and VESA compatible shutter glasses)

So the picture is very bright (needed because of the shutter glasses), but produces also the colour issue.
The value of "BrilliantColor" must be set to 0 manually each time you watch 3D content. And after this.. the picture
is more flat bacause of the additional light reduction by the shutter glasses...

3.Question
Does anyone know if the Acer H5360 or eMaschine V700 also have this colour fringing issue?

4.Question:
is there any firmware upgrade available...which could reduce the colour issue?

Thanks for your patience

and greetings

Alfi

Hi Alfi,
Optoma where absolutely brilliant! They collected the projector (at their expense) had it for about 2 weeks and returned it to me (again at their expense) The problem was all but cured :D
They created and installed a custom firmware update which someone else has said appears to resemble to HD67n's firmware. Now the solarisation is only apparent when BC is set to maximum and then only very slightly. At around 5-8, it has vanished. I am very pleased with their service and more importantly, the result of the service.
Send them an email and say that you would like this firmware update carried out on yours and as long as it is still under warranty, it wont cost you a penny.
They only need the projector itself. Nothing else, no cables, no remote , nothing but the actual unit.
Lastly, they did return mine in a plain brown box and not the original Optoma box so if you want to keep the original, send it to them in a different box!

Danny
 
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master811

Standard Member
Does anyone know how this compares to the HD200X, I know it is 1080p rather than 720p, but for things like console gaming, (which are mostly 720p anyway), will it make a huge difference?
 

Oakleyspatz

Well-known Member
Does anyone know how this compares to the HD200X, I know it is 1080p rather than 720p, but for things like console gaming, (which are mostly 720p anyway), will it make a huge difference?

I have an Optoma HD20 which is basically a HD200x with a bit of tweaking to improve contrast and brightness. Before that I had the HD600x.
To be totally honest, the HD600x was so good that there isn't that much difference. Yes, the 1080p one has smoother more detailed images, but the Optoma 1080p models are budget ones and do not offer the last word in detail or sharpness so their 720p models are not that far behind.
With the added bonus of 3D compatibility, the HD600x offers a brilliant projector at a great price.
If gaming is your main use, I'd definitely go with the HD600x...Imagine playing games in 3D!!!

Danny
 

xiaoda

Standard Member
Hi Alfi,
Optoma where absolutely brilliant! They collected the projector (at their expense) had it for about 2 weeks and returned it to me (again at their expense) The problem was all but cured :D
They created and installed a custom firmware update which someone else has said appears to resemble to HD67n's firmware. Now the solarisation is only apparent when BC is set to maximum and then only very slightly. At around 5-8, it has vanished. I am very pleased with their service and more importantly, the result of the service.
Send them an email and say that you would like this firmware update carried out on yours and as long as it is still under warranty, it wont cost you a penny.
They only need the projector itself. Nothing else, no cables, no remote , nothing but the actual unit.
Lastly, they did return mine in a plain brown box and not the original Optoma box so if you want to keep the original, send it to them in a different box!

Danny

Danny that's amazing! I don't suppose there's any way you could post the new firmware, or ask your Optoma contact to release the firmware as an official update?
 

Oakleyspatz

Well-known Member
Danny that's amazing! I don't suppose there's any way you could post the new firmware, or ask your Optoma contact to release the firmware as an official update?

Unfortunately, I no longer have the HD600x. I now have an Optoma HD20 1080p projector. The member who bought the HD600x off me was lmaolmao. Try contacting him, or alternatively, try the guy at Optoma Customer services who sorted it out for me. His name is Roy Harris and his email address is: [email protected]
He will be able to tell you if the firmware is available.

Danny
 

xiaoda

Standard Member
Unfortunately, I no longer have the HD600x. I now have an Optoma HD20 1080p projector. The member who bought the HD600x off me was lmaolmao. Try contacting him, or alternatively, try the guy at Optoma Customer services who sorted it out for me. His name is Roy Harris and his email address is: [email protected]
He will be able to tell you if the firmware is available.

Danny

So roughly what date was it when Optoma collected it and upgraded the firmware, if you don't mind me asking?
Was it recent?

And also, in comparison with your current HD20, has the RBE situation improved?

Many thanks for your reply!
 

Oakleyspatz

Well-known Member
So roughly what date was it when Optoma collected it and upgraded the firmware, if you don't mind me asking?
Was it recent?

And also, in comparison with your current HD20, has the RBE situation improved?

Many thanks for your reply!

It was repaired approx 2 months ago. I would say the RBE situation on the HD20 is about the same as on the HD600x. It isn't something that bothers me really. I notice it very occasionally but it is never that bad.

Danny
 

gadgetgeezer10

Standard Member
Hi
Yesterday I had a demo of the HD67N and HD20. I saw no real difference in viewing - pictures looked the same to me. Only difference, when the room lights were turned up and I was still able to watch the HD20.
Can anyone tell me if there's any real difference between the HD67N and HD600x? I know the 600x has 3500:1 constrast and the 67N has 4000:1. However, the 600x is £100 cheaper. Now I'm happy with the HD67N performance. My question is, can I drop to the HD600x and still have the same performance or will I be able to tell the difference? Also is the N bit a big deal?
Appreciate some feedback soon as wish to place order shortly.

BTW: Cheapest prices I've seen are:
HD600X £397 inc Oyyy.co.uk
HD67N £505 inc ProjectorPoint

cheers
 
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