55” isn’t cool, you know what is really cool? 320” and that is exactly the screen size you can get using the new Epson TW570 projector…if you have a free wall big enough that is.
Over the silly season I managed to get my hands on one of these projectors and had the time to put it through its paces in gaming, TV, movies and sports. But first up take a look at the official specs of the TW570
Light Output – 3,000 Lumen-2,100 Lumen (economy)
Resolution – WXGA, 1280 x 800, 16:10 (That’s 720p for us non technical types)
High Definition – HD ready
Aspect Ratio – 16:10
Contrast Ratio – 15,000 : 1
Lamp – 200 W, 5,000 h durability, 6,000 h durability (economy mode)
Keystone Correction – Auto vertical: ± 30 °, Manual horizontal ± 30 °
2D/3D Frequency Image – 120 Hz / 240 Hz
2D Vertical Refresh Rate – 100 Hz – 120 Hz
3D Vertical Refresh Rate – 200 Hz – 240 Hz
For me the most important number has always been the luminous flux, or how bright the picture should be. The Epson TW570 is being touted as the high-light home projector and at 3000 Lumens I was a bit worried that it wouldn’t really have enough light output to work in a standard room without black-out curtains.
However I have to say I was impressed. I could play FIFA quite easily with the curtains open and while it was obviously a bit washed out, once I closed the curtains – normal curtains – the colours really did pop and everything was clear to see.
On the other hand, spreading the size out to well over 150”, the unit’s 720p max resolution quickly becomes a problem. I’ve never been that worried about resolution and am quite happy to say that I can rarely tell the difference between 900p and 1080p on my 42” TV. However once you stretch it out it really is quite obvious to see and makes the visuals a little less resplendent than they should be.
When it comes to movies and sports though the projector works fantastically and I still can’t find anything that beats a personal projector when having a family movie night. It’s exactly like going to the cinema without being over-charged for stale popcorn and watered-down sugary drinks, all without the annoyance of having some rude teenager spend the entire movie trying to talk to his friends.
The projector comes with a plethora of ports on the back including USB, HDMI and VGA with the official spec sheet stating:
Cinch audio in, Stereo mini jack audio out, MHL, S-Video in, HDMI 1.4, VGA in, USB 2.0 Type B, USB 2.0 Type A
Besides projecting a massive picture onto your wall this projector has some other, quite awesome, features.
If you’re into 3D (I’m not) then you are ready to go instantly with the projector being fully 3D compatible. However it doesn’t come with 3D glasses, you have to buy those extra and apparently synch them via BlueTooth. That’s about as dumb as someone selling a mobile gaming console and not providing you with an AC adaptor.
But what is a really cool feature is that the projector can handle split screen mode so that you can watch your sports while playing Call of Duty. Or even more reasonably you can plug in your PC and stick the latest game in the corner while completing that amazingly boring Excel spreadsheet as you lounge on the couch.
All things considered, the projector has a great colour display, works very well and is a must-have for truly immersive movie nights but it does have some flaws.
The 720p resolution limit does take some of the enjoyment out of gaming and the projector is many things but it really isn’t very quiet, with a persistent, perceptible hum. Granted if you had it mounted on your ceiling you probably wouldn’t notice it much but when it is head level and only half a metre behind you the 37 Decibels it puts out is very distracting and after a while can drive you to drink. Mind you everything drives me to drink.
And then there’s the price. The recommended retail price for this projector is R12 850.88 and that is just too much money to spend on something that isn’t perfect, or damned well close to it.
Last Updated: February 3, 2015