The SP-A400B, as you might expect, falls somewhere between the portable proportions of a business projector and the larger stay-at-home variety. Thankfully, it does manage to remain reasonably quiet, with a rated audible noise figure of 32dB in bright mode and 28dB in the dimmer theatre mode.
A comprehensive selection of connections ensures that you’ll be able to hook up all manner of equipment: HDMI, VGA, composite- and component-video inputs are all provided, along with a monitor pass-through VGA connector.
Not as bright as other projectors with lower lumen ratings
To measure the performance of the projector, we used Datacolor's Spyder 2PRO calibrator, which is able to measure brightness and colour performance. While it doesn’t produce ANSI-standard results, it does allow us to compare projectors against each other quite accurately.
First of all, we flipped the projector into Standard Mode and took a look at the brightness output. While its performance is reasonable, it turned out to be a fair bit dimmer than some projectors with lower lumen ratings, such as the business-oriented BenQ MP721C or the HD65 home-cinema projector from Optoma, rated at 2200 and 1600 lumens, respectively.
Switching to movie mode caused the image to become around half as bright, while subtle colour details such as skin-tones were seen to improve. This gives you a great-looking picture in a darkened room, but it’s not ideal if you want to watch movies during the day and you don’t have some pretty heavy curtains.
I'd like to see some more revies of projectors...
...specifically; how cheap *should* you go.
@ David Wiernicki
"with its (...) 35,000:1 contrast".
No way. It's more like 1,000:1.
svp400 for 4.5k?1
I hope you bought that thing new in 1997, or you got serrrriously screwed. That thing is barely worth 200 bucks US in mint condition these days. My barco, with probably double the brightness and resolving power, cost me 400usd (that's under 200 in blighty if I'm not mistaken). The 2k pounds for that dlp will easily but you a g90 9" crt, which will match or beat the absolute best 3chip dlps out there (eg rs2). 2000 for any non-1080p pj is tru insanity, anyway. My company paid under 3k usd for a 1080p 3xlcd almost a two solid years ago!
Amen! Me and my $400 1080p BarcoGraphics 808s - with its near-silence, 35,000:1 contrast, and incredible, saturated colors - salute you. Granted, it weighs 140lbs, but since it's hanging from my ceiling and not stuffed in my briefcase I don't particularly care.
And to brainwrong: Another amen. That line is probably only a bit more bullshitty than claiming 2000:1 contrast at 2000 ansi lumens! (Usually, projectors like this will calibrate down to about 400 to 500 lumens if you want correct colors. And at that point the black get seriously awful.) It's worth noting that the Spyder 2 is awful below about 30IRE, too. Not too useful to do grayscale adjustment down in the darks.
One final word:
"It's found a good balance between the two usage modes, but unless you plan to use the same projector in the office and at home."
To that, I say:
You think you've found a good balance between having an editor and not having an editor, but unless you plan to train him better.
as a projector owner
I have the said HD65, got for about £420, powered at the moment by a £60 philips 5980 upscaling dvd player.
yay its cool. its driving a 120" 16:9 picture (thats 2.65m on the long side). Let me tell you its a damn site better than the last one i bought, a Seleco SVP400 CRT projector. £4500, about 35kg IIRC and a COMPLETE BASTARD to set up (3 individual tubes all needing to be tuned to each other so the colours match up. hours of fun for the masochistic)
for this to be 2000 lumens - cool. what this means is instead of a white matt screen you can go for a grey one. this increases the depth of your blacks, yet it will still have enough power to drive to make whites appear white. hell i've been considering geting a grey screen for my HD65. apart from the fact I had to bend the screen casing of the current one to get it in the house anyway...