Projector shmojector

REF: It’s not the size that counts..so they say.

Thanks to Jeremy for the link too 😉

I did some more research and finally found the site I’ve been looking for in Projector Central, they have a good search engine, many user and professional reviews and some good articles on this and that, all projector focussed (no pun intended) so it was easy to find what I needed. I ended up making a spreadsheet of features for a bunch of options, see it here. (MS Excel format)

So I went to Millennium Audio Visual yesterday with Kristie and we had a demo of a couple of “entry level” projectors (yeah, living in Royalla means everything you buy for the next 25 years is “entry level”).

We looked at the Hitachi CP-S210 LCD projector and a tiny little Benq 2120 (they didn’t have the 6100 or 6200 for demo but apparenty they use the same internals, the only difference being the 2120 is a “compact” model, so much smaller than the 6100, at a premium price)

After deciding that LCD was not an option because of the horribly obvious screen door effect we turned to the DLP Benq and were very impressed. While the quality wasn’t as good as our Loewe CRT, for the price the Benq puts out a massive 115″ diagonal 16:9 image (that’s 1.4m high and 2.4m wide) and combined with a 115″ fixed screen looked just amazing! (and it’s 10 times bigger than the existing TV)

So, we made a decision on the Benq PB6100, it’s not our dream projector but it’s a realistic beginning and the best value for money available at the moment.

The screen will take a couple of weeks to build (it’s a custom job) so I will post some more details when the screen and projector arrive.

As a side note, I think Adrian at Millennium deserves some kudos for spending the time with us, not being pushy and answering all the dumb questions with much patience (although I did a lot of research I’m still a n00b)..so if anyone else out there is considering a projector or other HT purchases in the future, I can highly recommend Millennium (link above, and below!).

New Stuff

If you’re watching carefully you’ll notice a new section on the right side of the page (later tonight), blatantly stolen from a zillion other blog sites I will force upon you whatever I am currently polluting my mind with, books, games, satanic music, you name it.

You don’t care what I’m reading/watching etc? Well, I don’t care that you don’t care, so nerny ner!

While I’m at it, one of my favourite (if not most favourite) Authors, Matthew Reilly, is giving away his latest book (Hover Car Racer) for FREE.

Well, when I say giving away, the book has no cost to the reader, it is in electronic-only format (PDF) and he’s getting his cut out of advertising on each page of the book, so he’s not really giving it away…well, sort of. Also, I haven’t seen it yet, but I suspect somewhere along the line there will be some product placement.

Only the first chapter is available at the moment, and its a decent read so far but it’s not notputdownable quite yet, we’ll see when he released the next few chapters, if his past efforts are anything to go by, waiting 2 weeks between chapters is going to be torture!

There is a good interview with Matthew Reilly here, explaining his motivations behind giving the book away.

See the link of the day for the links (below) to the book.

It’s not the size that counts..so they say.

Our media room was originally designed to have a projector and large screen installed but it never quite made the construction budget, while I’m very happy with the TV we have (Loewe Credo in case you’re interested), I’d still like to see the rooms destiny fullfilled.

I’ve started casually looking around at what’s available in the way of projectors these days, and I’m very happy with what has happened in the home theatre projector market over the last few years. They’re much cheaper, look much better and the variety is astonishing.

So, more as a method to keep track of my own thoughts and notes than a news update, I bring you:

Home Theatre 2004, Electric Boogaloo

Main Criteria:

  • 16:9 Native: All projectors can do 16:9 AND 4:3 but some are native 16:9 and others are native 4:3, why anyone would want anative 4:3 these days is beyond me, but apparently there is some reason since most of the units out there are native 4:3, since I’ll only really be watching 16:9 DVD’s on the projector native 16:9 is what I’m looking for.
  • 2000:1 Contrast Ratio: This ratio if defined as the difference between white and black, a 2000:1 ratio means that black is 2000 times more black than white, anything over 1000 is good, but the higher the ratio the more black the blacks will be (not racist).
  • ANSI Lumens can kiss my ass: ANSI Lumens are a measure of how bright the projector image is, 800-1000 seems average but since the media room can achieve total blockout darkness it doesn’t really matter how bright the image is because it doesn’t have to compete with any external light sources.
  • Inputs: S-Video, Component, VGA: Must have at least these, in fact, that pretty much covers every connection available at the moment and most projectors have them all.
  • Noise Level: Nothing is worse than hearing the buzz or hum of a fan or bulb while you’re watching a quite movie. Statisticallyspeaking, only a small minority of the movies I own fall into this category so it’s not a major concern, but the noise level is still important. 30db is quiet, approaching 40db is going to annoy me. (apparently 50db is the level of a normal conversation, but the db measure is on a logarithmic scale so 40 is considerably lower than 50 in actual noise).
  • Other junk: Warranty, Throw distance, weight, mounting brackets, bulb cost/lifetime all seem pretty much the same across allthe projectors I’m looking at so it’s not a major concern in the main deciding criteria.

So with all that crap in mind, I’ve looked around at the following models (not in any particular order).

Make/Model Approx Cost URL
Benq PB6100 $3000 Click Here
Optoma H30 $3800 Click Here
Infocus X1 $1800 Click Here
Dell 3200MP $2999 Click Here

From everything I’ve read, the Infocus X1 is about the best bang-for-buck out of all these, the H30 is the best overall but at a price (of course!). The only opinion I’ve heard against the X1 was from a guy trying to sell me the H30, go figure that one. The only problem is that nobody in Canberra seems to carry a demo unit for the X1, I hear rumours that Duratone may but I’d really rather not give those audiophile snob bastards my money (again, damn them for having the best brands but being assholes).

Are you totally glued to your seat with anticipation of the next installment of this fascinating story? Oh well, go find your own damn hobby then.

Pink Houses and long dead aliens be here!

Ref: The House Next Door is Pink! (damn, broken images, will fix soon)

Ref: Our Neighbour is a nutjob Part 1

Ref: Picture of the gigantic pink Phallus

So, apparently the Scientologists are building some kind of retreat in Royalla, it’s going to be pretty large (it will have 30 car parks)

and look like a giant pink hotel..oh wait, we already have one of those.

In all seriousnes, a petition was started and a committee was formed to prevent the retreat from being built. I think the whole thing

was a bit of a knee-jerk reaction, having a functioning business/cult compound in the estate may mean we get more resources for

infrastructure that our city cousins take for granted (Broadband, Fire protection, Transact etc). We may even get Tom Cruise or John Travolta

visiting Royalla…maybe not.

I bet a proposed Christian Monestary wouldn’t have attracted such vigorous opposition.

Anyway, the point of telling you this is of course, to have a laugh at someone elses expense, this story is second hand so may not be

exactly as it happened, in fact, this is more of an interpretation of the events than an actual retelling, names have been changed to

protect the innocent…so here we go:

Our Story Begins

One of the people gathering signatures for the petition is currently a resident of the Gallah Motel (the giant pink phallus next door

to us), she was making the rounds of the estate telling people about the “retreat”, how it will be evil and will increase traffic in

the form of delivery trucks, Thetan space craft and John Travolta’s Learjet.

So people are signing, support is growing..when she arrives at the house of Bill Gates (name changed, blah blah blah). Bill’s

wife answers the door and hears the shpeal:

Gallah Hotel Resident: “There’s a proposal for a large retreat in stage 4, there will be a 30 car carpark and it’s run by

aliens!”

Bill Gate’s Wife: “Holy crap, that’s no good, first we get that stupid looking pink hotel down the road, and now a Thetan car

park? Insane, give me the petition, I’ll sign!”

Gallah Hotel Resident: [silence]

Bill Gate’s Wife: “Well, are you going to give it to me or not, I wish i’d signed the one to stop that stupid pink monster from

being built, I’m ready to sign, we can’t have humans possessed by the spirits of long dead aliens infesting our country estate.”

Gallah Hotel Resident: “It’s not pink, it’s TERRACOTTA, and I live there.”

Bill Gate’s Wife: “oh” [stiffling laughter]

In the loungeroon Bill Gates can hear the whole conversation as clear as day and when his wife (Mrs. Gates) comes back from the front

door he’s doubled over in laugher, about ready to wet himself.

Bill Gate’s Wife: “Well, shit, I hope those Scientologists have better taste in TERRACOTTA.”

The End

The bush telagraph tells me that the despite all the petition signing and committee forming, the retreat is going to go ahead. The jury is still out on whether it is a good thing or not, but if it gets me a step closer to broadband, those Scientologist can build a giant pink L. Ron Hubbard statue for all I care, it can’t possibly be worse than what we already have next door.

Victory!

Success! Wanglaser lives forever as a new word in google, see the previous post and the link of the day attached..last week the word WangLaser returned zero results, now it’s returns zero+one!

I’m actually amazed it got indexed so fast and since this site appears at the top of the list for any search on “Royalla” also, I think it’s probably time to pull my finger out and get rid of the frames to make direct linking work. There’s also the problem of the old URL (the dyndns one) which google seems to think still exists…probably because it does…bleh!