The new Epson 8500UB

Abizzle

Active Member
Hi All,

After seeing my mates Optoma HD700x, I was gobsmacked at how good projectors have become. I mean the colours were a little washed out and rainbow effect etc. but what a decent performance from a budget projector.

I straight away decide to jump onto the band wagon. The only problem being that I have a Pioneer Kuro and thought the enjoyment I get out of the details, colour, contrast and most of all black levels makes watching movies great. So I didn't want to reduces the quality of picture I was used to by very much.

the one that would have fit the bill perfectly for this would have been the JVC DLA-HD750/950, but with the massive prices, I kind of shy'd away from them.

So the next best thing was bewtween the Epson, Panasonic and Infocus. Again with the Infocus, the blacks were average and there was not placement flexibility, which was important to have. Also the Infocus was still commanding a good price.

This brought me to two projectors Panasonic PT-AE4000 & the Epson 8500UB (also known as the EH-TW5500 in UK). Both are equally as good as each other and u won't go wrong with either, however, I went for the Epson 8500UB, because of a number of key points:

  • Black Levels better
  • Colours better
  • THX certified & calibrated

The panasonic has it's advantages like better features and better Frame Interpolation etc. But for me those were extras, the main thing I was looking for was the foundation of a picture. Blacks, colour, contrast etc. And this ticked all the boxes.

The cherry on top was the THX certified mode. and the fact it can be ISF calibrated.

Something the Panny doesn't have. In fact, this is one of the very few PJ's that has THX. I can't think of any apart from the more expensive JVC's.

For me this meant, at least the picture can be set to near industry standard without calibration costs.

It sells here for £4000 RRP, but managed to pick it up from USA brand new from an Epson dealer, delivered to UK for £1500!!!

Lets just hope the customs let the "GIFT" pass through wthout any taxs ;)

Anyway, my query was, we in the UK are relatively PJ Home Cinema babies, whilst in USA it's a big market with lots of people having one. So for me they have more experience across the board in PJ's. Predominantly, taking out the JVC, the Panny and Epson are fighting it out for top honours in the Middle-High End market.

Whilst UK know all about the Panny, how come theres very little talk of the Epson PJ's. Especially these new models.

In US, most of the reviewers prefer the Epson 8500UB over the Panny and I even read it is the closest projector that gets to the JVC HD-950 black levels and contrast.

I mean look at AVForums reviews on projectors, they keep reviewing Panny and JVC. And have not reviewed any of the latest Epsons. Is the community here overlooking a very special PJ.

Or am I just blabbing on and have thrown my money away by buying the Epson.

Please see reviews of it below:

Epson Home Cinema 8500UB and Pro Cinema 9500UB Projector Review - Overview

1080p Projector Report - Best In Class Awards for 2009

Epson Home Cinema 8500 UB Projector Review

Compare Projectors - Home CinemAa 8500UB vs. Panasonic PT-AE4000
 

Welwynnick

Distinguished Member
I agree.

I have both an Epson 7500 and a JVC RS2 for some reason, and the Epson holds up well in most respects. The worst thing about the Epson is the screen door, and the JVC is much better there, as are SXRD and recent DLP projectors. However, although its surprisingly poor in nose-against-the-screen comparison, when you're at a reasonable viewing distance it ceases to be an issue, and I'm not one that likes to sit away from the screen.

Aside from that the Epson does well. Bulb projectors never do real blacks, but the Epson was quite acceptable, and much betetr than other's I've had. Yes, the JVC does better bright and dark together, but without a domestic bat-cave, I doubt I'd miss the JVC. In other areas, the Epson is very good. The video processing does what it should do, the colour management system does what it should do, the frame interpolation system does - er - well, its interesting. As long as there isn't too much rapid motion, it does an amazing job, and keeps us well entertained.

This forum generally concentrates more on the JVCs (which I can understand) and Panasonics (which seem to follow the progress of the Epsons) and I think its a shame that the Epsons have so little exposure.

Nick
 

Chris5

Well-known Member
I think it's because finding any one with demo units is very hard. Sony is another culprit, I cant find anyone in SE England with a vw85 on dem. This is sonys loss as I would have probably bought one by now if I could see one. JVC on the otherhand are very good in this respect.
 

Abizzle

Active Member
This is the point I wanted to raise.

In USA, they are the best and largest selling projector company with home theatre users buying more epson than panny's.

No doubt the Panny coming into the market strong and has given them competition, but they still sell more.

In UK, Optoma is the best selling projectors, which really lags behind the Panny and Epson in US.

We need more awareness for Epson. So if a moderator picks up on this, lets have AVForums.com do a Epson 8500UB/9500UB review to see how well it does stacks up against their favourites.:smashin:

They'll be pleasently surprised. :thumbsup:
 

deja vu

Active Member
I have both the Epson 7500UB and 9500UB, I use both in Vivid mode with two external filters (used a colorimeter to tweak colour temperature) and I find my gamma corrected Sony G90 CRT gathering more and more dust. The Epsons in Canada (where I live) are quite inexpensive ($2,790 Canadian and included an extra lamp, a ceiling mount and will work with an anamorphic lens) and ended up slightly cheaper than the Panasonic AE4000. The frame interpolation in the 9500 is much improved over last year's and the black level is slightly improved. The super resolution feature works well at level one or two. I'm really, really impressed with this projector - now if Epson can only give us a 3D projector of this quality at a similar price point!
 

Abizzle

Active Member
Looks like I spoke too soon.:rolleyes:

AVForum Reviews have the Epson EH-TW5500 (Epson 8500UB/9500UB) on their list for review. At present "Pending".

This should be very interesting. I'm pretty confident it will be able to secure the "Excellent" award. But I'm interested to find out if it can plug the gap between "Excellent" & "Reference", which most of the Pannies and other projectors haven't as yet.

Note the only projectors to get Reference award were the JVC's which had THX mode on one of the presets. Which the Epson has as well.

What I'm trying to say is the THX Mode and CMS (Colour Management) system on the Epson allows for excellent calibration, which in turn can reach Reference standards.

Awaiting eagerly. For both review and my projector, which by the way is stuck at Heathrow awiting to go through customs. :rolleyes:
 

kgulls

Active Member
Looks like I spoke too soon.:rolleyes:



Awaiting eagerly. For both review and my projector, which by the way is stuck at Heathrow awiting to go through customs. :rolleyes:

Would be interested to know how much duty you pay,if any,on the import of the Epson.
Incidentally,may I ask where you eventually purchased this from and how does importing effect the guarantee.
I'm sure you will love this projector.:thumbsup:
 

davwa

Banned
Would be interested to know how much duty you pay,if any,on the import of the Epson.
Incidentally,may I ask where you eventually purchased this from and how does importing effect the guarantee.
I'm sure you will love this projector.:thumbsup:

I`ve lust answered this query regarding warranty on the other 3500 thread

Epson UK will completely wash their hands of any projectors that aren`t uk supplied.

And rightly so imho.

So if you think that taking the risk of it not going wrong and if it does sending it back to the states is worth it, then thats up to you.
 

Abizzle

Active Member
It'll be covered by my contents insurance.

But anyway, sending it back for warranty purposes is not a problem, will cost you £100 round trip, compared to the £2500 you've saved already over the TW5500!!!:thumbsup:

It's got through customs, with some charges. But the value given was $100, so expecting minimal duty.

Will let u know how much it came to.

Also, even though u can never say never, the fact Epson are shipping these with 5 year warranties on both bulb and projector, I kind of think they are pretty confident it will last that long, otherwise it was a bad marketing move.
 

Dan201

Member
Hi

Ive been looking into which models are which in the states. Its slightly confusing as some sites suggest different things.

What I believe is that the 8500 is called the TW4400 and the 9500 is the TW5500.

The reason I think this is that the price difference in the states is just too good to be true. The TW4400 is white, as is the 8500. And the 9500 is matte black, like the TW5500.

I hope im wrong but this does seem to be the case.

This web site confirms this, although there are plenty that state the 8500 has a contrast ratio of 200,000;1 which would go against my opinion.
Epson Launching Home Cinema 8500 UB and Pro Cinema 9500 Projector on November | Neo Gadgets

Can anyone in the industry confirm which is which?
 

Abizzle

Active Member
I'm afraid that website has got it wrong.

In the states they have more Epson models than we have here.

The 8500/9500UB are basically the same. The only differences are the 8500 is sold through normal retailers and the 9500 is through specialist authorised dealers.

To distinguish between the two, they also added the feature of anomorphic lens support on the 9500 and it ships with 5 year warranty. The same as the TW5500. Colours also distinguish between the two.

8500's feature set is exactly the same as the TW5500, minus lens support, warranty, but retains the THX mode and ISF calibration ready which is due to the superior CMS that the TW4500 doesn't have.

So basically, you can either say TW5500 without lens support or it sits between the TW4500 and the TW5500.

Check out the review on Projector Reviews professional reviews of projectors include home theater projectors
 

Abizzle

Active Member
People have been PMing me for details of the place I bought my projector from. Here is the reply/details for all that want to save around £2500 and get themselves one of the top projectors on the market.

Please be aware, shipping, insurance and customs is variable and down to the buyer. Well customs is more luck than anything. I got away with £26:



I went through a guy called Tyler Compton from a Specialist Authorised Epson dealer in Utah. His mail address is [email protected]. Their website is Utah Custom Home Theaters Salt Lake City Park City.

Mention me, Abbas from UK, and say that he sent me a Epson 8500UB for $2200 + $95 shipping and whether he can do you the same deal.

I paid through paypal and he is 100% kosher as my projector should be here in a couple of days (tracking). He will also put $100 value and gift on the shipment, so that it goes through customs with minimal charges.

Beats buying the same machine for £4000 from here. I even managed to get a Stewart Luxus Firehawk G3 Electric Screen 110" Used from USA for £500 delivered. A one off no doubt, but more used screens avaialable than the UK market (ebay.com).

My experience, your better off buying from USA. Better equipment and cheaper prices.

No doubt people will mention warranty. But the savings you make supercede any warranty issues. And now a days, electrics are built to last at least 5 years. Alternatively get yourself 5 years for around £200 from D&G. Still saving over £2000.

At which point it will be the right time to buy a 3D projector. And cause you saved up front, on resale of this projector, you shouldn't lose much money.

Let me know how it goes. Post your purchases here.:thumbsup:
 
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Abizzle

Active Member
Projector arrived A-OK.:thumbsup:

The screen also came through without any trouble or customs charge.

This has cost me just a little over £2000. For:

Epson 8500UB (TW5500) (New) - £1526 delivered
Stewart 110" Electric Firehawk G3 tab tensioned (Used but perfect) - £550 delivered

Both items I located on ebay.com.

Iwould strongly recommend overlooking the UK market and getting this stuff from USA.

I mean with the above combination, if you were to buy from UK would cost you in the region of £8000. I paid a quarter of the price. The same as people would pay for a half decent projector.

Good luck and if you need info on cheap but good DHL subcontractor rate for shipping the oversized screen, then drop me a PM. :hiya:
 

Abizzle

Active Member
Did you have to pay VAT on the goods?

What did you do about insurance for shipment?

Hi Mr Incredible, I did pay VAT on the Projector. A whole £21.50p worth of VAT LOL.

Insurance wise I took a risk. I valued both items at $100. Hence why the minimal VAT charge.

If you insure it for £2000 and then put a value of $100, kind of looks suss.

I figured as long as I can track it and the box is wrapped in brown paper so no one can see what it is, it will get through no probs. Which it has.

Shipment was only $95, which included $100 insurance.
 

Abizzle

Active Member
Agreed! Hurry up!

Will also be interested to see if it suffers from the red line problem that was widely reported but supposedly fixed, but according to this post, a unit from Germany with it "fixed" still showed signs of a red line.
http://www.avforums.com/forums/projectors/1194499-new-epson-tw-5500-way.html

I quickly tried it yesterday to see everything was working fine ie. a dud unit. The unit is a bit on the big side, as is the lens.

The only half decent wall I had was painted a Cyan colour. So was not expecting much joy with the picture.

But when I set it up quickly with Toy Story 2 (blu ray) on THX mode it was excellent. Just put it this way. Me and the mrs were watching the movie for 10mins before we realised theres no sound as we were just testing it upstairs. Sound is setup downstairs. LOL

I didn't see any redline effect, but was not looking for it. I put my nose to the picture on the wall and could just make some kind of very fine grid system that the picture is made up from. But I think thats to do with the 3LCD technology.

Step away more than a foot or two and you can't see it.

I'm going to wait til the weekend and fit the Stewart Screen inbetween the floorboards and downstairs ceiling, cut a slot and hang up the projector. Then I will critically take apart the picture and projector. Will also include pics.

But from initial impression, I don't think I'll have anything bad to say about it.:D
 

Mr Incredible

Distinguished Member
I see Phil Hinton will be posting his review today or tomorrow!

So how long did it take from ordering to getting in your hands?

Once notified, does one pay the VAT/Duty on-line?

Did you buy via eBay or direct with the guy in the USA?
 
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Abizzle

Active Member
I see Phil Hinton will be posting his review today or tomorrow!

So how long did it take from ordering to getting in your hands?

Once notified, does one pay the VAT/Duty on-line?

Did you buy via eBay or direct with the guy in the USA?

I found him on ebay. But he couldn't change the shipping price on his BUY It Now auction. So he sent me a seperate invoice via paypal. I paid via paypal and cause of the cheap shipping I chose. It took roughly 7 working days to reach me.

With the screen, I bought off ebay and organised my own shipping via DHL, who delivered in 3 days door to door. Was an amazing services.

VAT/Duty is paid by Parcelforce to customs, then when the parcel arrives in your local depot, they send a letter out, saying this much is owed. But due to tracking the item, as soon as it hits the local depot, I just go there, pay over the counter and pick up my parcel.

If you are interested in a projector, this is the way to go. People on here were asking £1500 for their 2-3 year old projectors.

Hopefully Phil's review will provide an exposure for the Epson. People will then definetely notice this thread and how good the Epsons have become.:)
 

Dan201

Member
Im also in the process of buying from the same guy. trying to see how much he will do a spare bulb for at the moment.

The 8500UB isnt the exact same as the tw5500 but it is very simular in every way that matters to most of us. Epson dont seem to have worldwide products, each region is different. In Australia I think the 8500 is called the tw4500, which we dont have in the UK.
 

Mr Incredible

Distinguished Member
@ Abizzle....

I've just entered details on this Duty and VAT calculator...
New Duty & VAT Calculation | The Duty Calculator

The projector is a Duty free category, so VAT is liable on the value of the goods + shipping.

If the declared value was $100 and shipping $95, then the VAT should have been just over £32.

4477337464_61f5769506_o.png


Plus Parcelfarce would make a charge for paying the VAT on your behalf first, probably £10? So not sure why you only paid £21.05. :confused:

Can you confirm what values were used to calc the VAT? Cheers.
 

Abizzle

Active Member
I can confirm the VAT was £21.50 and parcelforce charged £8 for handling fee. So total was £29.50. Anyway, even if it comes out as £50, that's minor compared to how much you save.

Also read the review on the TW5500 and noticed the Uk model doesn't have THX calibrated mode as standard. So out of the box the TW5500 pic was far from perfect. The 8500UB does have THX mode, so it is perfect from the off. But it can still be further ISF calibrated.

If the TW5500 had THX mode, then I reckon it would have got an even better review. The only negative is the manual zoom and lens shift. Which once setup, won't need adjusting, so for me minor.

They kept the price in mind when reviewing, so just imagine what the review would be like if The same projector was priced at £1500, which is what we r paying for it. :D
 

Mr Incredible

Distinguished Member
I am soooo close to pressing the button on this.

Fortunately I'll buy this through my business as I'll have it designated for presentations/training which means I can reclaim VAT. So I'd pay the $300 extra for full insured delivery for piece of mind. I think!
 

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