Projector for photo club meetings


8 Sep 2015 9:04PM
Seeing that prices are coming down all the time, I'm wondering if our club can afford a projector good enough for use in meetings ? We currently use a big screen telly, but with numbers increasing, it's not really big enough any more. Meetings are up to 20 people, more usually 12 or so and meetings are evenings, so ambient light is not usually a problem.

Does anyone have experience of a projector for a budget of say 800 - 1000 ? We use a lap-top PC with 1920 x 1080 res and HMDI connector runing Win 7.

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Dave_Canon 13 1.6k United Kingdom
9 Sep 2015 10:33AM
My Club has 3 digital projectors. The oldest is an Acer DLP projector about ten years old and no longer used (1024X768). We also have a more recent Canon XEED SX80 (1400x1050) Lcos projector and two years ago bought a Canon WUX 450 (1920x1200) Lcos projector. Our laptops were all intentionally purchased with duel channel graphic cards. We project to a normal Club audience of just under 100 but also run public events with audiences of up to 300. Both of the Lcos projectors are suitable for large and small audiences. A key requirement for the Club is projecting competition images and a high quality calibrated projector is required. The older DLP (and even older LCD) projectors were not good enough. Unfortunately the Lcos projectors which do provide the required quality are quite expensive. Most projectors are built for the home movie market but the still high quality projection market is specialised and mainly has commercial customers so prices are high. Given your budget, you may have to buy a cheaper DLP projector and accept some of the disadvantages. We used one for several years but had constant complaints about image quality but this was due to a fundamental problem with the DLP system.

My Club runs some sub-groups which can have an attendance of 6 to 25. We often use the in-built 125 cm plasma screen (belongs to the location not our club). The image quality is not that good but it is OK for lectures and demos. If we need to show work at competition quality, we then use one of our projectors. You might consider whether buying a second screen would be an alternative to buying a projector. Also not sure if you can apply for a grant to pay for a projector in France but our Club's first projector was paid for from a UK Lottery grant.

Dave
User_Removed 4 1.0k United Kingdom
9 Sep 2015 12:39PM
I bought an Epson at 450 and believe me the still quality is garbage, I returned it, we in the cub have a good one, as we use the hotels and that too is carp as compared to what is shown on the box, terrible contrast, not sharp
9 Nov 2015 11:38AM
After much soul searching and getting lots of feedback from other clubs here in France regarding their projectors, we took the plunge.
We now have an Epson 1980WU (cost 1400) which gives us 1980 x 1200px resolution and very pleasing image quality. None of the nasty effects of DLP machines. Brightness (4400 lumens) is adequate for presentations in daylight, but not really up to viewing photos without some reduction in ambient light. For evening meetings or theatre conditions it is not a problem. We are VERY pleased with it. I went to a meeting of another club a few days ago where they use a DLP "home video" type projector and there is no comparison.
9 Nov 2015 11:43AM
That should of course be 1920 x 1200px, but I cant seem to edit the original
Chris_L 5 5.3k United Kingdom
9 Nov 2015 11:52AM
Dave_Canon, how do you find the image of the Canon projector? It's clearly high-end, high-spec. Does it knock your socks off. How does it compare to slide projectors of old (I thought they were damn good even the Hanimex ones). How does it compare to the cinema or a high end monitor etc
Dave_Canon 13 1.6k United Kingdom
9 Nov 2015 7:33PM
You can Google the difference technologies but LCD is weak on shadow detail which may be fine for home movies but not good enough for still competition photography. DLP single projectors are fine but even they are hard to set up to get all the shadow detail and do not generally have as high light output. They can produce rainbow effects for some viewers. Of the two I would have chosen DLP in the past but LCD projectors have improved. LCos uses a combination of the two technologies but are more expensive. If you want the best currently LCos is the answer. About 2 year ago we started taking our first LCos projector (Canon XEED SX80 1400x1050) round to other Clubs showing the best images from our international salon. Our equipment is carefully calibrated and the reaction at many clubs was Wow! However many clubs in the area have now moved to LCos projectors. For our internal use we use the Canon WUX 450 (1920x1200) which looks amazing particularly when shown on a 14 ft screen which we use for special events. It is a matter of opinion but about 10 years ago we used to use a digital DLP projector (1024x768) and slide projector in the same evening. The slide projector looked a little dull but higher resolution. Now the WUX 450 looks much better than a conventional slide projector but only if properly set up and calibrated.

It is impossible to compare with a monitor as the projector is reflected light and the monitor emitted light. I understand that most cinema projectors are 3 gun DLP projectors. The DLP projectors we use have a single emitter and deal with the colours via a spinning colour filter. This is what produces the rainbow effect for some and reduces the dynamic range. Having a DLP emitter for each colour overcomes those problems and provide a much higher light output so well suited to a cinema. I think cinemas currently use 2k projector so marginally better but they use very large screens. Thus on our much smaller screens the WUX 450 will look much sharper.

Dave
9 Nov 2015 8:09PM
The Epson we have just bought has 3 LCD emitters, the difference is really significant, not up to LCos standard, but neither is the price !


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