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Question Screen suggestions for Sony HW40ES

shezy

Established Member
Hi All

I thought may benefit from the knowledge of elite minds here.

Just grabbed a Sony HW40ES from classifieds and am planning to replace my faithful BenQ W1070. Current bulb in Sony has only 200+ hours on it.

I have a dedicated HT room measuring 12 X 14 feet, one wall painted in dark teal colour and other three walls and ceiling are painted in white. Fairly light controlled, only has one window with thick blinds on it. Screen is mounted on top of the window and when dropped covers the whole window area with very little light bleeding from one side of the screen during the day time. Near complete dark in the night. Projecting on a budget white motorised screen around 110 inches diagonal using a HTPC.

Using recommended settings mentioned by Steve Withers in following thread:

Sony VPL-HW40ES Reviewer's Recommended Best Settings

Fired Sony up this weekend and wasn't impressed by the image quality while comparing it with BenQ. Although Sony's image looks a bit more clearer and better focused especially towards the edges where BenQ was a bit blur the over presentation is rather dull. Picture feels a bit washed out and way too bright specially in brighter scenes. Decreasing the brightness make things a bit better on cost of overall picture looking darker. This projector is famous for the Colour accuracy and black levels so I was expecting overall improved picture quality but its rather quite dull when comparing to BenQ at least to my eyes. The colours doesn't seems accurate either specially Red colour. Picture doesn't has the vibrance which is very evident on BenQ in the same environment. I do understand that BenQ is a bit more brighter than Sony (2000 vs 1700 lumens) but the difference isn't huge. And despite everything colour accuracy should be there even if it's less bright. I tired playing with settings but haven't been able to to improve the results to satisfaction.

This is only my second projector (BenQ W1070 being the first). Would appreciate if experienced dedicated HT projector users specially of the same model can share their valuable knowledge which can help. Am wondering:

If I am missing something in settings
Is it the screens which isn't better match for Sony.
Can it be 3 X white painted walls and ceiling which is affecting the picture quality.

I can change the screen and can even consider painting the other three walls with dark teal colour (although better half wouldn't like it a bit) leaving only white ceiling. But need to be a bit confident that the changes and all the hard work will improve the things.

Thanks in advance for your valuable opinions.

Shezy
 

ShanePJ

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
If its all about the brightness then the BenQ is always going to brighter that of the HW40ES due to the difference in the projectors. Although it does sound strange that you are mentioning about the Sony being to bright as it should be the other way round as I've always found the BenQ models to be overly bright compared to other DLP's and none DLP projectors, even though the W1070 was a good projector for its money. I would look at resetting the projector to make sure that one of the settings isn't bringing something unwanted to the table.

I once saw a W1070 completely whiteout a scene which put me off them as it removed so much detail at I couldn't see three bears on a snowy seen as they just turned into three dots on the screen. So for this the Sony should be much better on this front. Sharpness isn't a surprise with what you have mentioned too with the Sony coming out on top. So, do have a look at resetting the unit. Also look at a calibration disc (something like dve hd basics) to bring something more to your projector. Do remember though that this Sony is a budget Sony projector and has been trimmed in certain areas, but i feel so long as you create a good environment for the projector plus a few tweaks, it should better that overall of what you had before with the BenQ. If you don't have a projector screen, then looking at any will help the reflective properties needed to bring out more detail. A gain of 1.0 to 1.2 should be suffice
 

shezy

Established Member
Thanks for your suggestions @ShanePJ Much appreciated.
You are right about tweaking the setting. I was trying different options last night and then came across the Color Space settings. Changed these from BT.709 to Color Space 2 and voilà. Picture started looking much more vibrant now. Red and yellow looking more natural and have more punch, dullness gone. Had to reduce the RCP for Red from 10 to 3 as to balance it a bit.
Also changed a few other setting and resulting picture is much more satisfying now. I'll keep on trying different options in menu to see if can improve the result further but I'm perfectly happy with even current settings. Much better than BenQ already.

I think settings Steve Withers mentioned in his thread are a good starting point but every setup is different (screen type and light conditions mainly) so one have to tweak to see what looks good in their particular environment and to their eyes.

Thanks for replying once again.
 

shezy

Established Member
If its all about the brightness then the BenQ is always going to brighter that of the HW40ES due to the difference in the projectors. Although it does sound strange that you are mentioning about the Sony being to bright as it should be the other way round as I've always found the BenQ models to be overly bright compared to other DLP's and none DLP projectors, even though the W1070 was a good projector for its money. I would look at resetting the projector to make sure that one of the settings isn't bringing something unwanted to the table.

I once saw a W1070 completely whiteout a scene which put me off them as it removed so much detail at I couldn't see three bears on a snowy seen as they just turned into three dots on the screen. So for this the Sony should be much better on this front. Sharpness isn't a surprise with what you have mentioned too with the Sony coming out on top. So, do have a look at resetting the unit. Also look at a calibration disc (something like dve hd basics) to bring something more to your projector. Do remember though that this Sony is a budget Sony projector and has been trimmed in certain areas, but i feel so long as you create a good environment for the projector plus a few tweaks, it should better that overall of what you had before with the BenQ. If you don't have a projector screen, then looking at any will help the reflective properties needed to bring out more detail. A gain of 1.0 to 1.2 should be suffice

Also, I have a very basic motorised screen and looking to replace it with something better.
I'll keep an eye on classifieds to see if anything pops up.
Would you be kind enough to suggest a 100" to 120" screen which isn't too expensive (under £500). Would tab-tensioned screen be a major improvement?

Thanks
 

ShanePJ

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
I would say that if you have £500 to spend, look at a better electric screen as the same fabric type for a tab-tensioned should cost you closer to £800+ for a 92" let alone a 100" or a 120". No this is going to sounds like a sales pitch (which is isn't - promise as I didn't know you was looking for a tensioned screen) we have some big savings on our spitfire tensioned screens , 92" @ £600, 100" @ £600 and a 120" @ £859.

For for £99 (£599 all in) above your budget, you could have a 100" tab-tensioned screen, usually priced at £900 which places it in the same price bracket as a standard electric screen which is what I would recommend if these weren't on offer
 

shezy

Established Member
Thanks for suggestions mate
I'm not planning to buy it straight away but will keep an eye on your website around the time I have funds.
 

Luminated67

Distinguished Member
^Mate if it’s a dedicated HT room do yourself a favour and paint the walls black including the ceiling. Your Sony will benefit hugely because they actually have decent enough contrast to see noticeable difference.

Screen wise I’d look at a tab-tension one if a fixed frame isn’t an option, as the name suggests they keep the screen under tension and flat. They aren’t cheap but you’ll thank us in the long run.

Here’s a 100” tab tensioned screen that should fit the bill :smashin:

HiViLux Tab-Tension Leinwand/Screen 100" 221x124cm 4K-Tuch/G=1,0/3D/2D/DualSpann | eBay

The kind of pictures you can get from a Sony in a proper bat cave.

HbUbOr.jpg

GuyKGa.jpg


These were from my newer HW45es but I’d imagine the difference wouldn’t be huge.
 
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shezy

Established Member
Thanks for the suggestions @Luminated67
I wish I could paint the room black but better half wouldn't agree for that unfortunately. We have a feature wall painted in Dark teal so will try to convince her for painting other three walls with the same colour but ceiling will still remain white.

Fixed screen isn't an option as the wall to which screen is installed has the only window in the room and we do like some sunshine during the day when not using projector. I'm convinced to go for a tab-tensioned screen whenever I changed the existing one.
 

Andy360

Established Member
I used to use a HW40es in a dedicated room and it too was an upgrade from a W1070. I found the colours on the Sony used in low lamp and reference mode to be vey, very good, more natural and accurate than the Benq W1070 (and that was already impressive for the price). Blacks and contrast were also better and very much better in darker low APL scenes.
I agree with the post above that environment is a crucial factor in appreciating these differences. My room is a mix of black paint and black velvet including the ceiling, I would look at improvements in your room if that's at all possible. I also found the Sony too bright as there is no iris to control light output. I used an ND2 filter in front of the lens on my w1070 and HW40es to reduce light output with the added benefit of better blacks and I highly recommend trying this. Ultimately though I found the Sony very good but let down slightly by light blacks which distracted me when viewed in a bat cave. I eventually sold it and picked up a JVC X35 on the classified here and don't worry about black levels and contrast anymore. No projector is perfect but the JVC has great blacks so I'm happy until the urge for 4 k becomes too much.
 

shezy

Established Member
Thanks for suggestions @Andy360

Interesting to know that you were using a filter with your projectors. Never heard of it before. Can you be kind enough to share which particular filter you were using and how much it cost. How does it fit to projector lens.
 

Andy360

Established Member
There are several threads on this forum about ND2 filters, both on the W1070 owners thread and the HW40es one.

On the W1070 I stuck the filter on with blue-tack but with the Sony I and others fitted the filter onto a cheap stills camera rubber lens shade turned inside out and lined with velcro to make a snug fit over the lens (detailed on the owners thread somewhere). This also allowed a bit of tilt to avoid reflections back down the lens optics. It's important to use a glass rather than resin filter because of heat and of decent quality to avoid colour shift, the filters reduce the light output by 50% but should not affect colour.

I found it improved the blacks and bought the light output down to a more reasonable level on both projectors. I used a Hoya ND2, I can't remember the size, I'll have a look for it later.
 

shezy

Established Member
Thanks mate. Very helpful.
I'll have a look on the threads.
 

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