Sony VPL-VW260ES 4K SXRD Projector Review & Comments

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Steve Withers, Oct 19, 2017.


    1. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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    2. djkutasi

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      For this price there are much cheaper and (IMO) better alternatives if you no insist to real 4K.
      Personally i would rather have lens memory than a 4K panel, but that's only my humble opinion. :D
       
    3. danny daniell

      danny daniell
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      Once again the Sony rules itself out due to inferior black levels .. still can’t match the JVC’s
       
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    4. imightbewrong

      imightbewrong
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      Sounds good - 4K projector prices getting ever lower.

      One of the main things putting me off a second Sony projector is the miserable 'prime' support. Particularly if dropping £5K on a product.
       
    5. Navvie

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      Even at £5k, I'll still settle for Faux-K.

      Maybe next year.
       
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    6. jfinnie

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      Nice review, thanks!

      Do you think you could provide details of the reference screen size / type / gain and lens throw these nit measures come off? And the lamp mode?

      It would be really useful if in future reviews where you had a projector with adjustable iris if you could provide details of the two ends of the iris so we could see the level of light level adjustment possible for the iris mech, too.
       
    7. matrhos

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      Great review, thanks! Especially interesting for me as I'm looking to buy a projector in the next 6 months and will be demo'ing this Sony, the JVC X7900 and the Epson LS10500. You didn't mention this Epson in the competitors section of your review, though.

      Which JVC projector did you use for your side-by-side comparisons?
       
    8. Normal Bias

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      When you're watching material that's 3840 wide, does the Sony only use 3840 of its pixels or does it interpolate to use the full 4096?
       
    9. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      You have a choice, you can either just use the 3840 pixels within the 4096 panel or you can zoom the image out to fill the whole panel, which obviously uses interpolation.
       
    10. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      I was using a JVC X5000, which I think had the edge in terms of SDR but the Sony was better for HDR. I haven't seen the X7900 in action but I'd imagine it will be even better in terms of SDR, although I do think that Sony seem to do HDR better than JVC. You're right I forgot about the Epson LS10500, I'll add that the alternatives.
       
    11. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      We measure projectors directly from the lens, in order to eliminate all other factors and the SDR measurements were in Low Lamp Control mode and the HDR measurements were in High. The VW260ES doesn't have a manual iris control, it just a fully open iris all the time but we can include measurements from both ends of the iris scale for those that do have a manual iris control.
       
    12. jfinnie

      jfinnie
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      I'm really confused by that then... How can you provide useful measures in nits without it being related to a screen size? Can you explain a bit more about the methodology please?

      To my (simple) mind, the useful measure coming "out of the lens" would be lumens, which you could then convert to nits off screen taking into account the screen size and screen gain. Nits out of the lens I can't get my head round at all (I might well be being dumb!)
       
    13. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      In doing so we're trying to eliminate other factors like the size of the image, the screen material and reflected light in the room, all of which will impact on the measurements. If you measure off the screen then those measurements would only apply to that specific image size and that specific screen material in that specific environment. Our measurements are meant to be purely indicative of the projector's maximum calibrated output under ideal conditions but it does mean that the numbers for a projector that I review can be compared directly to one that Phil reviews for example. The numbers are in nits partly because that's how the software measures them but also because with so much HDR marketing related to nits numbers these days, it hopefully gives readers an idea of how a projector compares to a TV in terms of brightness. However you're right, a lumens number would also be useful, in which case the calibrated SDR output is roughly equivalent to 800 lumens and the calibrated HDR output is about 1,300 lumens.
       
    14. jfinnie

      jfinnie
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      I think I understand what you're trying to achieve, but I also think it is pretty flawed for projection unless you quote a screen size that number of nits is achieved at.

      The nits number as a measure of the projector's brightness is completely meaningless without the effective screen size. Sure, you can turn the meter around and get a nits measure from the lens, the SW will give you one. And if you move the meter a bit closer to the lens, or zoom the lens, the nit measure will change significantly... Nits is a term which hides the underlying units, which is cd/m2. It is the amount of light in candelas over 1m2 of screen area.

      Comparison between two projectors via some arbitrary nits measure is incredibly hard because they still depend on distance of the meter to the projector and the zoom setting of the projector. It is useful for TVs only because they have a fixed size and the backlight doesn't move relative to the screen surface. You could compare projectors using nits, but you'd have to fix a size for the comparison (and even then there is the issue of choosing zoom settings and relative projector position, which also affect the nits achieved).

      Comparing brightness between projection and TVs would also seem particularly pointless for SDR. More interesting for SDR is whether I can hit reference levels without having to do things like strapping filters to the lens to dim the output.

      In the case of this Sony - and what lead to my original question - 224 nits for SDR in low lamp is insanely bright for a dark environment if it relates to some sensible screen size, and if it can't be controlled it is almost as much of a problem as the black floor.

      In general, I don't think trying to compare projectors to TVs is useful in individual projector reviews. It is probably the kind of thing that deserves an article of it's own (as it comes up fairly often as a discussion - TV or projector).

      IMHO if you wanted to provide really useful numbers, look at the tables from cine4home (e.g. here: JVC DLA X5500 / X7500 Test Projektor Beamer Preis 4K HDR UHD | Cine4home.de ) ; they provide calibrated lumens at each end of the zoom in the various modes.
      Or provide a one-hit nits number for some given typical screen size or gain, along with the settings employed to achieve it.
       
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    15. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      Some interesting points there, I'll pass them on to Phil who does the majority of the projector reviews.
       
    16. bov

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      Great little review, thanks.

      Does the actual pixel size of e-shift versus native 4k projectors make a notable difference on the clarity of the image? I have admired the JVC projectors for some time but surely a 1080p panel shifting cannot deliver the same sharpness as a native 4k panel due to pixel display overlapping?

      So £5k for the 260, £7k for a 360 with Iris and memory or £6k for the JVC? Where would you put your money? Finding it hard to locate places I can get good demonstrations.
       
    17. magicnews

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      One of the main things putting me off a second Sony projector is the miserable 'prime' support.
       
    18. jfinnie

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      Why wouldn't you stick £4k for the JVC X5900 in the mix too? It's hard to see it owing much to the 260, and you get iris and lens memory. The X5900 is pitched at a similar point to this 260, it just doesn't have the native 4k which is why Sony think they can justify the premium.

      I think Eshift etc is a double edge sword. You're never going to get 8million pixels out of it (not that you could see them from your seating position) but it will get rid of the screen door effect (not that you could see that from your seating position either!). Some people complain about the noise from the Shift actuator moving back and forth.

      It comes up loads. Would be really nice to have a big shootout of the various 4k vs eshift in some real-world usage. Would be even better if you could figure out a way to make it a blind test with them all calibrated up to reference. I'd love to see that.
       
    19. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      I was watching a 10 foot scope screen at about 11 foot away and it was very hard to tell any difference between the native 4K Sony and the e-shift JVC. Obviously as you get closer to the screen the higher resolution of the Sony becomes more apparent, especially with native 4K content but it's worth remembering that a lot of films are still finished at 2K.
       
    20. afzal

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      I'm a bit confused by the different reviews and naming conventions Sony are using. In various places, I've read that the VPL-VW285ES is just the name used in various markets for the VPL-VW260ES.
      Super, but in the brochures for the 285 is says "4K HDR 60p 10bit (for HDR10/HLG)" and I haven't seen that written anywhere for the 260.
      In the 260 specs it says that 3840x2160/50p or 60p are YCbCr 4:2:0 / 8 bit.
      Also, only one of the HDMI inputs is HDCP 2.2 for the 260, while both are for the 285.

      So, are they the same machine or not?
       
    21. Thatsnotmynaim

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      On the Sony website for the 285 it says both ports do HDCP 2.2. It say it supports [email protected]/60hz and it supports hdr, just not both at the same time, so it [email protected] without hdr or [email protected] with hdr, I presume due to the hdmi ports not being full 18gbps ports.

      Sony 4K SXRD Home Cinema Projector

      I think they are the same machine, but like many pjs not having 18gbps HDMI ports could in certain situations be limiting, like 4k gaming @ 60hz with hdr, SkyQ [email protected] and Netflix on things like nVidia for [email protected] with hdr.
       
    22. afzal

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      Yes. It looks like it could be problematic for PS4's as well.
       
    23. Toenail

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      Please compare the HDR performance to the X7500 or X7900. Which is the price point of the Sony. Or even the X5500.

      The X5000 is not known for good HDR at all because the build in Gamma for HDR10 is not implemented well.
       
      Last edited: Oct 31, 2017
    24. Toenail

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      Exactly. We cannot assume 4:2:0 is selectable from the streaming box or gaming device.
       
    25. Toenail

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      Remember the Sony has plastic elements in the lens. That has a impact on sharpness and CA.
       
    26. Steve Withers

      Steve Withers
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      I've got the JVC X5900 in for review at the moment but unfortunately the Sony has already gone back. However Phil has both the VW360 and the X7900, so he can directly compare them.
       
    27. Toenail

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      Exactly. This projector is problematic for SDR because there is no way to control light output. Many people with smaller screens and light controlled rooms will find it very uncomfortable to watch.

      Is like watching a TV with its black light on full.

      The lack of an adjustable iris should have a few points deducted and a stern warning to those who is planning to buy this to watch SDR content.
       
    28. justinhow

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      This is not exactly right. It can accept [email protected] HDR, (4:2:0, 10 bit) but down converts internally to 8 bit. It is still HDR (WCG etc) but the downside is this leads to banding on graduated colours like the sky. So probably best to say does not fully support [email protected] HDR.
       
    29. luborj

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      Hi, I am considering buying this projector but one thing confuses me in the product's specifications and I couldn't find any information regarding that in the review. The specifications on the Sony site say:
      Computer signal input Maximum display resolution: 1920 x 1080 dots (HDMI Input only)

      I want to use my PC as the main source of Netflix and other streaming services. Or just simply play anything from the computer as it is the most versatile player. So my questions is regarding the statement in the specifications... Will I be able to set up 4K resolution for this projector in my Windows 10? I would connect it to my Pioneer SC-LX701 av receiver first and then send the signal from the receiver to the projector.
       
    30. charles

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      I would like to see this projector working before purchase.Several stores can sell me one but do not have a demo model.Does anyone know of a store,ideally in London or East Anglia that has one to demo?
      Many thanks
       

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