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Topic: Can you help me choose?
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Joined: Nov 1, 2020
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I currently am running a Dell 3400MP and it has served my church well. It really was great when we were mainly running balck and white PowerPoint. But once we began using Proclaim for our worship service presentations, it has proven not to be very good with lower contrast content and that with a lot of color variation.
Since we have taken a hit in giving due to Covid we can't afford to replace it. It was approved to be replaced, but our spending has been frozen. So, I am looking at a few used models to get on my own. I was hoping yall might be able to tell me that one is better than the other from experience (not just specs) or to avoid one for whatever reason and stuff like that.
First, let me lay it out. The video source is VGA from my desktop and the res. is currently set at 1600x900. The projector is 13' from the wall (which is very light tan, not white, don't get me started) and there are multiple different light sources in the room. So, rather poor conditions for projection.
Anyway, the two used projectors I am most interested in are the Panasonic PT-AX100U and the Canon REALiS SX6. From all I have read, they were killer in their time. Each has something over the other and I am not sure which would be best for use in my church. Any help you can offer me would be much appreciated. Oh, and the sooner the better, since they are used...
Thank you
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Joined: Mar 28, 2005
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The Canon is a business class projector and should be a significantly brighter model than the Panasonic.

I have used the Panasonic several times in home theater installations. It's rock solid in that regard, but it is not a business class projector.

The things you want:
3-panel design. So, you are good choosing a 3-LCD (Epson, Panasonic, etc.) or LCoS (Canon).

BRIGHT! That's mostly what business class presentation comes down to. The brighter the projector, the better it will look.

Be aware, that if your Dell projector has a LOT of hours on it, then it may just be asking for a new lamp. When a projector's lamp nears end of life, it can be less than 50% as bright as when it was new. This is important because contrast and colors will severely degrade.

I'm not sure what your budget is, but Epson's refurb website is a great place to look as well.
https://epson.com/Clearance-Center/Projectors-for-Work/c/cc302

You are at about 400 bucks for a 3500 lumen model. But, it comes with a warranty, proper HDMI connectivity, wide aspect ratio, and a new lamp. All of which will make it a pretty solid way to go.

I still often recommend that course to get more bang for the buck down the line.

Depending on screen size, you can get something like this for under two grand...
https://epson.com/Clearance-Center/Projectors-for-Work/PowerLite-5535U-WUXGA-3LCD-Projector---Refurbished/p/V11H824120-N

Please feel free to call me if you want to talk about things a bit or keep asking questions if you want some details. If you provide a budget you are aiming for, I may have some time to offer up a few ideas that may work well.

It can be frustrating when the budget is low and you are kind of stabbing around in the dark for a solution.

But, sticking with 3-LCD/LCoS and then going BRIGHT is the way to do it.

Be aware that the current recommended standard for business use is 1920x1080 or 1920x1200 resolution on the projector. That matches up with most desktop displays and many laptop displays these days.
AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology consultation during the build and installation process in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.
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The Dell was great when it was being used for black n white Pwrpnt. I got complements all the time by visitors and when a pastor from another church was there or a missionary, they'd often ask for the model number. But it was never that good for color stuff though. When we'd show a movie on occasion, I'd have to adjust it a lot and kill all the lights or it was not that good. So, I don't think a bulb replacement will do the trick here.
The Dell only has 1,500 Lumens and a 156 watt bulb, whereas the Canon SX6 has 3,500 Lumens and a 270 watt bulb. The contrast numbers aren't great on the Canon, but I have read an in depth review that addressed this. They said that visually the contrast was quite good and the blacks were pretty black. I was leaning toward the Canon over the Panasonic and you helped make up my mind. Thank you.
I also very much appreciate the links, the other helpful comments and even the offer to speak with you on the phone. I will keep those links handy for the future for sure when the church is ready to upgrade.
Thanks again.