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Topic: Need help finding a high-end projector for a movie theater / BenQ SP890 replacement
Joined: Dec 14, 2013
Posts: 20
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I work (voluntarily) at a small independent movie theater (50 seats). We had a BenQ SP890 which just completely died after only 3 years of use. The thing is fried, and we are asked half of its retail price for repair with only 6 months additional warranty, which is not an option in our opinion.

Like I said it is a movie theater, we are in a basement (old wine cellar) more or less fully dark room, and we show movies about 3-4 times a week. The projecting distance is about 14 meters (46ft. / 15.3yd).

What options are out there? We are not really specialists in the matter. We know the movies but not the equipment We could go up to 6000/8000USD probably. Due to the recent experience, we are not very enthusiast to go with a BenQ again. OTOH, if there is nothing else... The thing is, looing at specs of the SP890 (4000 lumen, 100000:1 contrast), there ain't much else with those.. but I guess specs aren't everything?

The only thing we know for sure is that we need 1920x1080, and if possible a "monitor out" that could be used to check what the movie is doing before starting it (e.g configuring languages, subtitles, etc). The SP890 has a PC out, but it only works in conjunction with the PC IN, so you can't go out the PC out if the input source is HDMI...

We screen from either blu-ray or dvd, and the projector is not completely in the middle of the screen (so there is a need for slight trapeze adjustment). And we don't do 3D.

Thanks in advance, and don't hesitate to ask me if you need clarification!
Joined: Mar 28, 2005
Posts: 13,210
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When you say it is not in the middle of the screen, what do you mean by that? Is it left/right of center? Or is it up/down from center?

You say the projection distance is 46', but what is the screen size?

The SP890 is listed as only being good to about 35', so I want to check your actual size specifications as that's a pretty long ways to shoot onto a screen and the image would be very large - between 262" and 393".

My concern is that you would need to check most projectors to see if they actually will focus properly at that distance.

This model may be appropriate, but you will want to carefully check the specifications to meet your needs...
AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology consultation during the build and installation process in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.
Joined: Dec 14, 2013
Posts: 20
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Thanks a lot for reply. The screen would be about 196"" wide and 118" high (5 x 3 m / 16.4 x 9.84 ft)

When I say not in the middle it's slightly to the right of the screen, but theres maybe a 5°-10° angle from the middle. Height-wise it's also a little higher than the middle, maybe 10°-15°.

I would say that the BenQ gave satisfactory results, except that it died after only 3 years. We are aware we can't get a super high-end model due to our budget, so we're looking at the best thing possible within that $ range...
Joined: Dec 14, 2013
Posts: 20
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I found a swiss website (we're in Switzerland) on which you can give parameters and it outputs you a list of available products. I used 4000lm, 2000:1 contrast and 1920x1080 + gave screen size and throwing distance (could only go to 9m+ so not as high as 46ft but anyway..), here what came out, ordered by price ascending:

4000lm, 3000:1

4000lm, 2600:1

4000lm, 2000:1

4500lm, 3000:1

OPTOMA ProScene EH2060
4000lm, 2500:1

ACER P7500
4000lm, 40000:1

4000lm, 50000:1

4500lm, 2000:1

DELL 7700 Full HD
5000lm, 2500:1

6500lm, 3000:1

7500lm, 2100:1

The Vivitek D8300 and NEC PX750U are probably out of our budget... what are you thoughts on the Dell 7700 and Vivitek D5280? For some reason the BenQ SH960 isn't popping out, I don't know why, but it doesn't seem to be much available for now anyway.