If you’re a convinced videophile, then you are most likely quite picky when it comes to the quality of the movies you watch. This also means that you notice details that might appear insignificant to other people.

The good news is that the Sony VPL-VW385ES projector might be an excellent option for you – due to several reasons. This device offers good value for the money. That is to say, if you don’t have the budget to invest in a native 4K projector, but you are looking for a unit with a promising performance, this device is a decent option. Even if it’s not cheap, the price is more than fair considering all the features you get – as you’ll clearly notice in this Sony VPL-VW385ES Review.

On the other hand, if you’re not too fanatical about the video quality of your projector, then perhaps investing such a sum of money in this device might not make sense for you.

Expressly, the Sony VPL-VW385ES was meant to substitute for the company’s older model – namely the VW-365ES. But the improvements are quite impressive. While the distinctions aren’t necessarily revolutionary, there are several benefits that have drawn our attention – namely the enhanced optical performance, the added lens memory, as well as the added dynamic iris.

What are the main improvements over the last model and who should consider this projector?

The previous model – namely the VW-365ES – wasn’t equipped with lens memory even if the lens features were indeed motorized. In the meantime, the newer model presents movie lovers with the option of choosing a widescreen (such as 2.35:1). Therefore, you won’t have to deal with the annoying letterboxing at the bottom and top on most movies.

Nevertheless, presumably, the most notable enhancement is the inclusion of a dynamic iris. This aims at optimizing the black performance level. In contrast with the last generation, the optics has also improved. Therefore, the quality of the picture is notably better.

For the price, this unit delivers in terms of image quality. Therefore, if you really want to enjoy 4K first-class image quality, this device is for you.

Now, let’s have a closer look at the main characteristics of the Sony VPL-VW385ES.

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Sony VPLVW385ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
13 Reviews
Sony VPLVW385ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
  • Screen Size Range: 42-85 inches from 8 feet; 62-126 inches from 12 feet, 83-167 inches from 16 feet
  • Resolution: Full 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • White Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Color Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Calibrated Brightness (cinema 1 mode): N/A

Sony VPL-VW385ES Review: The main characteristics of this projector

The features are the first things you should take into consideration before you make the decision to get this projector. So, let’s see what this projector has to offer.

1. Excellent Color Distribution

We should point out that the color distribution of this projector is quite impressive, so to speak. Considering that this is an immense challenge when it comes to projectors, this unit does deliver. At the same time, it’s worth noting that the device is customizable, enabling you to personalize the setting depending on your individual preferences.

That is to say, you can test different settings so that you can really enjoy your new 4K projector to its fullest potential.

To be more specific, this has four times the resolution of a typical full HD. To that and, bear in mind that you’ll get excellent image quality – of 8.8 million pixels (4096×2160) in order to enjoy a more qualitative image. For example, you can watch your favorite movies from way closer than you would in the case of full HD. Pretty great, isn’t it?

2. 3D Characteristics

One thing we’re sure you would be curious to learn about is the 3D specs of this projector. And this makes sense, of course, considering the growing popularity of 3D movies and material. In this view, we were quite satisfied with the 3D performance of the device.

Expressly, thanks to the RF 3D transmitter, which synchronizes with the projector, you can use this device for 3D materials, as well, which is quite great. Versatility is, without a doubt, an important characteristic you should look for in a device such as this one – and gladly, this Sony unit doesn’t disappoint.

Moving on, just as in the case of HDR, if you want to play 3D movies on a projector, you need to adjust the level of brightness accordingly. To be more specific, brightness plays a key role in this view. However, note that you might have to play with the settings a bit until you find the specifications that suit your style 100 percent. Some people enjoy testing different specs – but this isn’t for everyone.

In spite of that, though, it would be safe to say that the coloring on 3D material is quite accurate when it comes to this Sony device. If you’re a perfectionist, you might not be 100 percent content, but that’s just how things are. For example, only a true and convinced videophile is likely to notice the faults.

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Sony VPLVW385ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
13 Reviews
Sony VPLVW385ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
  • Screen Size Range: 42-85 inches from 8 feet; 62-126 inches from 12 feet, 83-167 inches from 16 feet
  • Resolution: Full 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • White Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Color Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Calibrated Brightness (cinema 1 mode): N/A

3. 1500 Lumens for High Brightness

It’s no secret that the brightness level on a projector plays a key role in the overall quality of the image. This is why this always interests us whenever we put together a projector review like this one. More specifically, you get 1500 lumens of white and color brightness. These are generated by the highly capable 225W lamp. For example, considering the specifications on the brightness of this unit, you can attempt to project images up to 300’’ diagonally.

4. Sharpness and Processing

VPL-VW385ES Sharpness

What could be said about the sharpness and processing of this device? For most of the time, the colors are quite sharp and distinguishable – which is obviously a highlight of the Sony VPL-VW385ES. Nevertheless, when the image comprises several textures and colors, there is the likelihood that the quality might be affected. In some instances, we noticed inconsistencies in both coloring and texture. Therefore, this could be a minor inconvenience.

Still, if we were to assess the quality overall, we could argue that we were satisfied with it. Without a doubt, in view of image sharpness and processing, you can always get better quality. But you do that at an extra cost. For the value of the device, though, the quality is outstanding, so to speak. And this is precisely what you should factor in at this point.

Moving on to the image processing, Sony distinguishes itself thanks to the Reality Creation feature. What does this entail – you might ask? This characteristic aims at significantly optimizing the overall image quality, offering excellent detail enhancement and sharpening. Obviously, this can make the world of a difference, and our favorite part about it is enjoying excellent pixel mapping, alongside other unique characteristics.

5. Monitored Zoom Lens and Wide Lens Shift

Thanks to the 2.06x zoom, finding just the perfect spot for installing your projector won’t be as difficult as you might think. What you have to do is regulate the position of the projector up to 85 percent vertically and 31 percent horizontally. This way, you can be 100% confident that you’ll get the ideal angle to watch your favorite movies whenever you feel like it. We thought this feature was worth mentioning.

6. HDCP 2.2 Support

Furthermore, you should be pleased to find out that this projector is compatible with a wide range of devices. This is primarily due to the HDCP 2.2 compatibility characteristic. Therefore, you can view your favorite movies in 4K from more than one source.

7. Nine Picture Calibration Modes

We should mention that you have the possibility of picking one of the nine picture calibration modes, depending on what appeals to you the most. What are these modes you can choose from? Well, you can choose from the following: two theater film modes, reference, cinema digital, game, photo, bright TV, TV and bright cinema.

Aside from that, in order to enjoy a higher degree of control, the manual color-tuning tool enables you to take your customizing to another level.

8. 335W Ultra-High-Pressure Lamp

Another interesting characteristic about our unit is the fact that it incorporates an ultra-high-pressure lamp. What does this mean? This translates into a lamp life of no less than 6000 hours. If we were to compare the Sony VPL-VW385ES with other units in the marketplace in the same price range, then we could say that Sony truly distinguishes itself from the crowd.

Aside from that, it’s worth outlining that you will get a warranty of three years with the purchasing of the product. This definitely offers peace of mind when making such an investment.

9. Vibrant Colors

VPL-VW385ES Colour Distribution

In regard to the color quality of this device, we were fairly impressed in this area, as well. Thanks to the TRILUMINOUS color, this unit aims at reproducing aqua blues, crimson reds, as well as emerald greens. Therefore, the landscapes displayed on the screen will appear much more lifelike than in the case of similar units on the marketplace.

10. Gaming

We’ve already mentioned that you can select the game calibration mode if you want. And while you can utilize the projector for this purpose as well, there are still some shortcomings in this area that are worth outlining, so that you know what to expect.

That is to say, this particular device isn’t necessarily the perfect choice for shooters or games in which the input lag might lead to complications and problems. For the most part, though, the return on your investment, in this area will be decent. Expressly, the entire gaming experience, as a whole, will be a positive one – and that’s what matters most.

Consequently: should you play games while using this projector? Undoubtedly, you can do that. You will most likely enjoy this gaming experience, not to mention that it will feel surreal, on occasions. Leaving aside the potential challenges that could arise, the device does a decent job in this respect, as well.

11. Motionflow – The Key to Smooth Action

Did you ever watch a movie on a projector and felt as if the action was dispersed due to the impaired quality of the device? That shouldn’t be an issue with the Sony VPL-VW385ES. Regardless of the material you’re watching, you will get to enjoy a unique, smooth on-screen look, even when it comes to fast-moving action sequences.

This is achievable thanks to the manufacturer’s unique characteristic – namely the Motionflow. This technology aims at creating and inserting extra frames between the original ones. First, it compares and contrasts fundamental visual factors on successive frames. Afterward, it assesses the split second of missing action in the sequences that proceed. Cinema purists should be happy to find out that the True Theater 24p mode aims at mimicking true-movie projection, as well.

Pros and Cons


Every projector has advantages and disadvantages, and as a rule of thumb, no product is perfect. So, even though this projector has many things to look forward to, there are also some disadvantages to consider before you spend your money on it. Let’s start with the good things first, then we will move to the cons:

Pros

  • Mainflow technology that ensures a key action
  • 1500 lumens for high brightness level
  • Motorized zoom lens and wide lens shift
  • Deeper blacks and flawless whites
  • Versatility
  • Super-resolution reality creation
  • Dynamic contrast for impressive realism
  • HDR compatibility
  • 3D and gaming compatibility
  • 9 picture calibration modes
  • Impressive home theater experience overall

Cons

  • The product comes with its limitations, mainly when it comes to gaming. The quality of the image might suffer.
  • When the image features a lot of textures and colors, a blurring effect might emerge.

Alternatives

Before we conclude this Sony VPL-VW385ES review, we would like to give you a legit alternative – namely the Optoma UHZ65 projector. Both units have similar performance and characteristics when it comes to image quality, contrast, blacks, detail, and resolution.

If you intend on using the device for gaming or 3D material, then the Sony might be a better option. Meanwhile, if your focus is on long-term brightness stability, then the Optoma UHZ65 is a better option.

Conclusion

As we conclude this Sony VPL-VW385ES review, we are hopeful that we have addressed most of the questions you might have had about this amazing projector. It definitely has a lot of potential, considering the outstanding image quality, processing, sharpening, as well as the state-of-the-art characteristics included by the manufacturer.

Considering the price of the unit, it offers excellent value for the money paid, enabling you to enjoy excellent 4K quality without necessarily paying a small fortune. Even if, at the end of the day, you may still select a more inexpensive product, this one definitely delivers in terms of 4K support, clarity, and colors.

I have thought about writing this Sony VPL- VW285ES review because a lot of fellow movie-watching lovers could find it very helpful. Older projectors may not have the same quality, thus not showing the movie in its full glory. As such, a movie night with your friends may not be as good as you expected it to be, leading to disappointment. So, knowing the feeling, I wanted to save other people the trouble.

Once Sony released the Sony VPL- VW285ES projector, all of my worries were as good as gone. It wasn’t a surprise that Sony managed to keep leading the industry, making 4k projectors available at even lower costs. This projector was created with the regular home user in mind, meaning you would be able to comfortably use it at home for a theatre-like experience.

Forget about the TV that is too far away or sitting in front of the PC until your back pains become insupportable! This projector model will let you have the cinema experience while at home, and it will be hard to resist it. This review will show you why purchasing this unit will be a great investment.

Who should consider this projector?

People who would derive the most value from this projector are movie enthusiasts, especially those who don’t like the idea of spending more than $5,000 on a projector. Movie-watchers who are tired of experiencing the movies in low quality will fall in love with the 4k resolution, thus seeing it in all of its glory.

In my opinion, anyone who has tried this resolution, compared with the picture quality, contrast and mode diversity will love using it when watching movies. In terms of performance, the whole unit is all about customization. The projector is a 3D one that has a dedicated RF emitter, but you don’t need 3D glasses for it. You can still share the 3D content by wish, and the feature can be really impressive if you value the quality of videos.

Sony VPLVW285ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
12 Reviews
Sony VPLVW285ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
  • Screen Size Range: 42-85 inches from 8 feet; 62-126 inches from 12 feet, 83-167 inches from 16 feet
  • Resolution: Full 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • White Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Color Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Calibrated Brightness (cinema 1 mode): N/A

In terms of colour management, the system is pretty good, and it shows the world much better than you’d expect. In addition, it has a lot of unique features that could impress you. For instance, the bright cinema, reference, and bright TV modes will allow you to experience some impressive visuals.

The image quality is very high, and if you want to see everything in detail, the picture will be very sharp and detailed. There’s not too much digital noise either. The movies you’ll watch will look very clean.

I think that people who would benefit the most from this unit are those who seek an amazing home cinema experience and want to see every pixel in detail. If you want a movie night with your family or friends, it will work great even in the living room, and the picture would look amazing even in well-lit rooms. However, a darker room will help you get the best of this product, thus experiencing the same cinema quality in your own home.

At the same time, I do not recommend this unit to gamers who seek 4K HDR 60p gaming. You should be aware by now that there may be some banding in some sources. Considering the projector has an expected input lag of 55ms with the source, this model is not the best choice for 4K HDR 60p gaming regardless. Other options need to be considered if you want this and if you are concerned with quick response and minimum input lag. You should opt for the game mode 1080p option at 36ms in that case.

Features

The features are the first things you should take into consideration before you make the decision and purchase this unit. So, let’s see what this unit has to offer.

1. Lamp life

Sony claims that the lamp life of the VPL-VW285ES is of up to 6,000 hours. But, of course, it all comes down to how you use the projector, and how much you can tolerate the inevitable dimming as time goes by. Basically, you would want all the brightness there is, for as long as the product is able to provide you with it.

Therefore, the dimming could be a problem for the HDR lights. Anyway, you will be able to use the projector for a long time, even if you binge watch multiple TV shows every night.

2. Remote control

The unit comes with a remote control, so you can easily control it from afar. It is pretty large, so the buttons are well-spaced, allowing you to press the buttons without accidentally pressing the nearby ones. In addition, many of the buttons give you access to some of the most used features.

Also, if you’re looking forward to the 3D feature, you’re lucky, because the remote also has the 3D feature listed. Although glasses are not included in the same package, you will be able to get the TDG-BT500A ones from Sony. Some third-party glasses that conform to the full HD 3D standard should also work with this unit.

Sony VPLVW285ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
12 Reviews
Sony VPLVW285ES 4K HDR Home Theater Video Projector
  • Screen Size Range: 42-85 inches from 8 feet; 62-126 inches from 12 feet, 83-167 inches from 16 feet
  • Resolution: Full 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • White Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Color Brightness: 1500 Lumens; Calibrated Brightness (cinema 1 mode): N/A

3. 4K resolution

Most likely, one of the amazing features that caught your eye was the 4k resolution. This model is a three-chip SXRD design, and its imaging chips have a high resolution of 4096 x 2160. Just like all 4k projectors, it doesn’t come with the processing of Dolby Vision high dynamic range content.

Still, it comes with HLG and HDR10 processing. Sometimes, the HLG is used for streaming, and even for 4k broadcasts.

What you should know is that the 285ES doesn’t have any type of iris, be it dynamic or fixed. Maybe that is what decreased the price of the 285ES compared to the Sony VPL-VW385ES – because the latter has a selectable dynamic iris. The model we reviewed comes with powered lens focus, shift, and zoom.

4. Picture quality

Sony VPLVW285ES Overhead

Regarding the picture quality, I think it’s not a surprise that Sony doesn’t disappoint with this model either. Two of the best features when it comes to 285ES’s picture quality are, of course, the sharp image and the solid contrast. Basically, it has the ability to show even the tiniest details, such as fine hair and fabric texture. Therefore, you will be able to see every detail there is on the screen, enjoying the movie at its best quality.

5. Brightness

The brightness this projector comes with is of 1500 lumens. You may think that it’s not too much, but the video optimized mode puts out about 1300 lumens. As such, despite its low maximum lumen rating, the VW285ES is great in delivering the right amount of lumen spec once it’s calibrated for the optimum video.

6. Contrast enhancement

The contrast is one of the features that impact the image quality. The one that our model comes with has 4 options, which are off, low, medium and high. As a result, the control has a subtle impact on SDR sources, as it creates a slight brightening effect on highlights when you switch from off to high.

The biggest influence is on the HDR picture, the effect being a boost in highlights and a brightening of the picture as you switch from low to high. It can be a very useful feature when there are unpredictable output levels in HDR discs, as it compensates for those.

Pros and cons


Every unit has advantages and disadvantages, and as a rule of thumb, no product is perfect. So, even though this projector has many things to look forward to, there are also some disadvantages to consider before you spend your money on it. Let’s start with the good things first, then we will move to the cons:

Pros

  • It has 2 HDMI inputs with 13.5 GHz speed that is just what you need for any practical purpose.
  • Although it lacks a dynamic iris, the black level performance is really good. You may be surprised by this aspect.
  • Its resolution quality is hard to beat, as it’s a 4096 x 2160 4K resolution.
  • The color of the picture, as well as its quality, is very good.
  • It supports 4K with HDR and BT.2020 color, as well as HLG standard for streaming 4K.
  • Despite having 1500 lumens, it provides great quality even after calibration. Therefore, it has enough brightness to work well even in non-theater rooms and media rooms as long as there is enough light control and you have a suitable screen.
  • It has great CFI for smooth motion, which makes it amazing for TV and sports.
  • The image is very nice and sharp, thus you will be able to see even smaller details in high quality, including hair and fabric texture.
  • The flexibility placement is great, respectively a 2.06:1 zoom lens and a lot of horizontal and vertical lens shift.
  • Sony did a great job of providing a bright picture with no dimness.
  • The warranty for 3 years, so if any issue occurs in the meantime, the costs are covered.
  • The image looks great even when the lights are on.
  • The remote control is very well-made and easy to use, as it’s big and the buttons are easy to press. Moreover, it contains most of the frequently used features.
  • Unlike some of its competitors, it is pretty quiet, even at its full power.
  • It is cheaper than other projectors with 4K resolution.
  • It is easy to set up, so you won’t encounter any difficulties before being able to use the unit.

Cons

  • It could use a third HDMI input.
  • Although the HDMI is 13.5 GHz, 18 is considered the better alternative, because it’s needed for capabilities like best sub-sampling.
  • It has no lens memory.
  • It doesn’t work for gamers who want 4K HDR 60p gaming.
  • Hard-core gamers may be disappointed with this projector.
  • While the black level performance is good, a dynamic iris would improve it much more.

Alternatives

If you are still not convinced after reading all the qualities of this Sony projector, there is another option out there that you could consider. This is the Optoma UHD60 projector. It is yet another projector that is very easy to set up, as it allows you to easily align it to a screen.

It could provide you with the same home cinema experience like the Sony model. It is bright but doesn’t come with noise. It has 2,200 lumens, and while not as bright, it can be used in the daytime as well. However, the curtains have to be half-open. It has a variety of picture presets, such as HDR, Game, Vivid, Reference, Bright and Cinema. Each of them can give you a better experience with the unit.

Moreover, the image it provides is very detailed, thus it will look very clean, allowing you to watch movies in superior quality. Overall, the UHD60 is a very enjoyable projector that gives good pictures in both blackout and ambient light conditions. Its 4K resolution makes it what it is, so you should give it a look if you think Sony is not the best option for you.

Conclusion

When you want to have a wonderful movie night, the quality of the image can greatly improve the experience. With what you’ve read in this review, you are now aware of the many qualities that the unit has.

It comes with 4K resolution and is able to show even the smallest details, but it can also be used during daytime. Moreover, it operates quietly, the image will look sharp and clean, and it has a remote that allows you easily use some of the best features.

All in all, considering this projector is cheaper than other competitors, it can give you unforgettable movie nights with your loved ones. I hope that this Sony VPL-VW285ES review was of help to you, and you are now informed enough to determine if it’s the solution you are looking for.

In the last couple of years, more and more 4k front projectors have been developed, which made these products more affordable than they used to be. This is why increasingly more people consider investing in such a unit. Sony, in particular, facilitates an extensive selection of native 4K projectors, whose prices range from $4,000 to $60,000.

Today, we will talk about one of their most popular models – namely the Sony VPL-VW675ES. So, if you’re thinking of getting such a unit, we’ve got you covered in this in-depth Sony VPL-VW675ES review.

But first things first: who should even consider getting this projector? If you are on the lookout for a genuine 4K HDR-capable projector that extracts a lot of detail, it will be difficult to find another unit in the same price range that would battle the Sony VPL-VW675ES. That would explain why this product is almost always sold out.

Nevertheless, it accounts for a significant investment. So, what we’re trying to say is that, if you have a budget of around $20,000, you’re a video enthusiast and you want to enjoy both widescreen and optimal picture quality, you should definitely consider the VW675ES. In addition, if you want a big screen, this might also appeal to you.

However, if you want a massive screen instead, then you might consider investing in the Sony VPL-VW885ES – it is much more expensive, but it can produce up to 2000 lumens, which is pretty impressive.

What features does the Sony VPL-VW675ES offer?

The Sony VPL-VW675ES is an HDR-capable, native 4K projector, which offers notable real-world enhancements regarding performance and technical capabilities. For one thing, the 4096 resolution is impressive; not to mention that its brightness rating is 1,800 lumens. As for the dynamic contrast ratio, it is 350,000:1.

Sony VPLVW675ES Native 4K HDR 3D SXRD Home Theater Projector
2 Reviews
Sony VPLVW675ES Native 4K HDR 3D SXRD Home Theater Projector
  • Screen Size Range: 42-85 inches from 8 feet; 62-126 inches from 12 feet, 83-167 inches from 16 feet
  • Resolution: Full 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • White Brightness: 1800 Lumens; Color Brightness: 1800 Lumens; Calibrated Brightness (cinema 1 mode): N/A

This is just a quick overview of our Sony VPL-VW675ES review. That being said, let’s drill down into its features, and how these will likely affect your own experience.

Native 4K Resolution Guarantees Lifelike Pictures

One of the most impressive characteristics of this projector is, without a doubt, the native 4K resolution. As already mentioned, it comes with four times the resolution of a full HD – featuring 8.8 million pixels, 4096 x 2160. Thus, whenever you watch a movie, you can say that it is the real deal. It makes movies feel like real life.

To get a better idea of its performance, note that this resolution is the same as the Digital Cinema Initiatives for cinema distribution. In addition, the corner to corner clarity is outstanding, allowing you to watch movies much more closely than you normally would with full HD devices.

HDR Compatibility

Due to the HDR – high dynamic range – this projector facilitates optimal brightness and contrast range. At the same time, you can see that every image is delivered with excellent accuracy and clarity. Even the most avid users out there will definitely appreciate the detail of the images.

350,000:1 Dynamic Contrast

The contrast rating of this projector really contributes to capturing each scene with realism and fine detail. Essentially, in order to accomplish deep and vibrant colours, this projector is equipped with optimal lens iris control and a potent video processor. Therefore, every movie you’ll watch with this projector will feature dynamic contrast for unparalleled realism. We think that contrast plays an important role in capturing the lifelikeness of a movie, which is why we really enjoyed testing this device.

1800 Lumens

The Sony VPL-VW675ES projector allows you to really enjoy movies with the brightness you prefer. So, depending on your preferences, you can customize the brightness level. Thanks to the 280W lamp, the projector facilitates the required brightness level to deliver vibrant, beautiful images on screen up to 300 inches diagonally.

Picture Position Memory

Another important thing our Sony VPL-VW675ES review should note is that you can set the device to memorize your preferred settings. So if you have strict specifications when it comes to watching your favourite movies, you can store them for easy recall. Details such as lens, zoom, and shift settings can be stored for up to five screen formats.

This way, you can quickly switch the settings and watch them in an optimal format. Doing this is super easy and you’ll really enjoy the convenience of this feature in the long run.

Sony VPLVW675ES Native 4K HDR 3D SXRD Home Theater Projector
2 Reviews
Sony VPLVW675ES Native 4K HDR 3D SXRD Home Theater Projector
  • Screen Size Range: 42-85 inches from 8 feet; 62-126 inches from 12 feet, 83-167 inches from 16 feet
  • Resolution: Full 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • White Brightness: 1800 Lumens; Color Brightness: 1800 Lumens; Calibrated Brightness (cinema 1 mode): N/A

Reality Creation 4K upscaler

You can choose to upscale your DVD movies and Blu-ray discs near to 4K quality. This is thanks to the super-resolution reality creation 4K upscaler that evaluates each pixel in any direction.

In addition, it utilizes a digital signal processing algorithm that maps pixels, in order to improve aspects such as texture, contrast, and colours. The Sony 4K projector really delivers when it comes to detail and colour range, not to mention that the increased brightness and dynamic range are easily observable, especially if you’re into detailing.

Installation Process

Now let’s turn our attention to the installation process. For the most part, we didn’t find the installation process too time-consuming or difficult to follow. The 2.06 motorized zoom featuring a wide lens shit range entails a to-the-point installation process. However, make sure you focus on regulating the position of the projector up to 85 percent vertically and 31 percent horizontally. This way, you’ll enjoy the most out of your new projector.

There’s a manual included in the package, but here’s the electronic version for your convenience.

Compatible with State-of-the-art Technology

Moving on, you should note that the VPL-VW675ES is capable of projecting content at an impressive rate – up to 60 frames per second, and it can do that in 4K. So, the images are characterized by superior realism and colour. I really liked the fact that this unit supports HDCP 2.2 so that I could enjoy state-of-the-art 4K services.

If this is high on your priority list, then this projector is right down your alley.

TRILUMINOUS Colour Technology

This projector captures true-to-life tones and colours, as it comes with TRILUMINOUS colour technology. What does this mean? The triluminous display presents a more diverse range of colours than most TVs. In addition, the colour spectrum is 50 percent larger in comparison to the one facilitated by typical LCD display panels.

The LED light goes through a film of quantum dots in order to produce vibrant colours. In other words, Sony aims at enhancing the colour saturation by using this technology while diminishing colour fading, especially when the screen is viewed from a luminous angle.

Shades that are hard to produce such as emerald green, aqua blues, crimson reds, all these are excellently displayed by the Sony VPL-VW675ES. Thus, both seascapes and landscapes will look much more vivid, while faces will look better too, as the skin tones are faithfully reproduced.

Motionflow Technology

Regardless of what you’re watching, the projector will allow you to enjoy fast-moving sequences and silk-smooth on-screen look. However, let’s explain what the Motionflow technology implies.

This is Sony’s compensation system that contributes to bridging the gap between the frame rate of the material and the refresh rate of the screen. In other words, this technology contributes to creating a more natural and smoother appearance.

Nonetheless, while this is the prime purpose, some people believe that it can look rather unrealistic – that’s because it is quite different from what you usually see at the movies. However, the good thing is that you can turn off the Motionflow technology if it doesn’t appeal to you. Like most things that relate to projector features, it really is a matter of preference.

However, cinema fans are more likely to appreciate this feature.

Advanced 4K SXRD Panels

We need to mention that the advanced 4K SXRD panels really make a difference when it comes to the quality of the blacks. The response rate of 2.5 milliseconds reduces the space between the pixels in order to facilitate a detailed, smooth image every time.

Moving on, the LCD layer is thin, featuring a reflective silicone plate. The purpose of the SXRD panel technology is to separate the white light of the lamp into distinct colours using mirrors. The light then goes in and out of a panel, facilitating an efficient light blocking, which captures deep blacks.

Nine Picture Calibration Modes

Moving on, you might be pleased to learn that this projector comes with nine separate picture calibration modes. They are as follows: bright cinema, bright TV, two cinema film modes, cinema digital, reference, photo, game, and TV. All you have to do is pick the one that you like best.

Aside from that, the state-of-the-art HSV manual colour tuning allows you to further customize your watching experience so that you enjoy ultimate control.

Sony VPLVW675ES Native 4K HDR 3D SXRD Home Theater Projector
2 Reviews
Sony VPLVW675ES Native 4K HDR 3D SXRD Home Theater Projector
  • Screen Size Range: 42-85 inches from 8 feet; 62-126 inches from 12 feet, 83-167 inches from 16 feet
  • Resolution: Full 4K (4096 x 2160)
  • White Brightness: 1800 Lumens; Color Brightness: 1800 Lumens; Calibrated Brightness (cinema 1 mode): N/A

Pros

  • Motionflow and Reality Creation processing are included
  • You can adjust the processing depending on your preferences
  • Sharp and clear signals, even from lower-resolution sources
  • Sleek, modern design
  • Manageable size
  • Generous setup tools
  • Bright, high-contrast engine
  • High-quality video processor

Cons

  • It does not support the Dolby Vision HDR format
  • It accounts for a significant investment

Alternatives: Should You Get a Different Projector?

The fact is: there isn’t a perfect projector that appeals to the needs and preferences of every single user out there. So, one thing we try to do in our reviews is to provide at least one alternative for those who are either sitting on the fence or just don’t link the product.

In line with that, if you find that you admire the features of the Sony VPL-VW675ES but it doesn’t fit into your budget, a decent option would be the Sony VPL-VW285ES. Let’s have a look at its primary characteristics, shall we?

The Sony VPL-VW285ES enables you to enjoy the performance of a genuine 4K device, without requiring you to invest such a large sum of money. That isn’t to say that this unit is on the affordable side; but, in comparison with the 675ES, it is more conveniently priced.

The picture is sharp, clear and the shades of blacks are really amazing. It should be used with a 16:9 screen. Its brightness rating is 1500 lumens, which is pretty great considering the price category. It’s also worth noting that the Sony VPL-VW285ES is capable of doing up to 4K/60 fps at 12 bits and 4:2:0. Since this is above the HDR10 standard, it should work great for most HDR sources.

Essentially, for best results, you should make sure that the output settings match the source of your display. In this price category, the Sony VPL-VW285ES projector is a good option. Its only major limitation is that, if you’re a movie enthusiast, you might be disappointed that you cannot get the widescreen route.

Conclusion

This section brings this Sony VPL-VW675ES review to an end. We hope you have gotten tremendous value from it and you’re better informed about the value you can get or not get from this projector. When it comes to products like this, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all projector that is perfect for everybody. Each user has different specifications and preferences. Also, the space you have at your disposal is different, and so is your budget.

However, all things considered, we do believe that Sony’s VPL-VW675ES offers optimal real-world performance with both low-resolution and 4K sources, which is really impressive.

We will conclude this review by saying that the Sony VPL-VW675ES is a potent, high-quality projector that extracts more detail to your images. This is what makes it stand out from your regular run-of-the-mill 4K projectors. So, if you’re eager to invest in a capable projector, it can be difficult to find one that is better than the Sony VPL-VW675ES Projector – especially in its price range. It’s not perfect, but it comes close to being perfect.

Best 1080p projectors under $500 (2018)

The Top 1080p Projectors that Cost Less than $500

When shopping for a 1080p projector in today’s market, it can be difficult to identify which brands offer the best value for the price you pay. This is an especially important issue to figure out, as the purchase of a projector represents a large investment in your home entertainment center setup. Sorting through the dozens upon dozens of suggested projectors on the websites of major electronics retailers can be a daunting task, and typically leaves consumers will more questions rather than effective answers.

With this shopping environment in mind, we have taken the time to curate a list of the top projectors selling for $500 or less today. While some of these projectors may have display resolutions higher than 1080p (also known as “full high definition,” or “full HD”), each product on this list managed to pass our review process, indicating that their image quality is enough to satisfy even the technophiles among us.

Each of these projectors will be judged on three key criteria: Brightness, Image Quality, Unique Features. Our first two areas of review are self-explanatory, while the third, Unique Features, will focus on the specialized technology that sets each projector apart from its competitors. By going in-depth in these areas, it is our hope that consumers will leave our blog feeling better informed about how to go about investing in a high quality yet affordable projector. Without further ado, let’s jump into the review and see what the first unit has to offer.

Check out the Top 5 Projectors Available for Under $1000

1. ViewSonic PA503S

ViewSonic 503S

The ViewSonic PA503S is highly regarded within this price range. With a strong combination of crisp image quality and high customer satisfaction, this unit may seem like a no-brainer after a quick glance while shopping online. But how does it really measure up in terms of our specific review criteria?

Brightness: With a brightness of 3,600 ANSI Lumens and a 22,000:1 high contrast ratio, this projector is guaranteed to produce clearly visible images in almost any presentation environment. Believe it or not, this visibility also extends to rooms that have high levels of ambient light, making this a particularly good investment for those having to consistently deal with open windows or unavoidable natural lighting.

The lamp bulb utilized by this projector is also guaranteed a longer lifespan, thanks to a number of different projection modes that somehow manage to avoid compromising the overall quality of the image at the same time.  For example, when the projector’s Power Saving setting is on and there is no type of input signal detected, the projector will automatically switch to a mode that saves a significant amount of lamp bulb time – which ensures that users save a significant amount of money in the long run.

Image Quality: With the ViewSonic PA503S, a no-frills yet crisp image quality combines with a number of notable features that make this projector a great choice for those who want to combine home entertainment functionality and on the go presentation readiness in one single device. Users have raved about the image quality, with many saying that it allows for viewings that are of comparable quality to those created by far more expensive projectors.

Unique Features: The target market of presentation givers is made clear by the inclusion of capacity for up to 8 different remote controls to be utilized at once on this projector. This feature – while far from mainstream – could help teachers and professors engage classrooms with multiple choice questions peppered throughout presentations.

ViewSonic’s proprietary SuperColor Technology is impressive, to say the least. This allows for a wide range of visible colors, ensuring that users are able to enjoy more realistic and accurate video projection in both bright and dark environments without ever having to sacrifice image quality.

2. Fixeover GP100

Fixeover GP100

The FIXEOVER GP100 (formerly VIVIBRIGHT GP100) is a great choice for those looking to buy a modern, feature-rich projector without breaking the bank. Whether for video games, movies, presentations, or marathon Netflix sessions, this projector offers all of the features and amenities that consumers these days demand from their products.

Brightness: This projector has been found to be plenty bright for almost any setting in which it would be utilized. With a bulb rated at 3500 ANSI Lumens, enhanced brightness and clarity are guaranteed. Better yet, the light source utilized in this model is LED-based, meaning that it is not only low-power and eco-friendly but versatile enough to be put through its paces while still operating properly. Overall, the brightness of this unit guarantees a crisp, inviting image, regardless of the location in which it is being used.

Image Quality: Overall, the video quality of the GP100 is enough to impress even the biggest skeptics. The resolution is full 1080p and appears to bring and crisp on any wall or surface. However, there have been reports of color profiles in certain images appearing flat, which means that some images might not appear to “pop” as much as one would like. Still, the projector is powerful enough to do well even in bright rooms. While there are instances of occasional blurring on the corners, this is easily fixable by switching out HDMI cables until the problem is resolved.

Unique Features: As a no-frills projector, there aren’t any notable technical specs to point out here. However, the GP100 has arguably one of the sleekest designs on our list, which gives it extra points when it comes to product styling. While this unit does not scream “premium,” it has everything one needs to bring the movie viewing experience home, making it the perfect choice for those who don’t want to break the bank.

3. BenQ MW526

BenQ MW526

Coming in just shy of $500, this projector just barely makes it onto its list. While the audio on this model has been found to be just short of awful (which isn’t a deal breaker in most situations thanks to external speakers), the picture quality is strong and bolstered with 3D content capabilities.

Brightness: With a bulb rated at only 3,200 ANSI Lumens, one could be excused for believing that the brightness would be less than stellar for this unit. However, users have reported a high-quality projection when used for even longer periods of time, which goes to show that there is more to the brightness quality of a unit than captured in a simple benchmark rating.

Image Quality: Good, yet not great. The image quality of this unit comes in at barely full high-definition quality. With this being said, there are plenty of more affordable units out there that offer a better viewing experience. Focus and zoom settings are limited, with a modest 1.1x zoom allowing for just enough adjustment to achieve a clear picture in most situations. With image quality comes cable support, and thankfully this model has consumers covered. VGA, HDMI, RCA jacks, and S-video ports are all included, ensuring that you will be able to display your content regardless of the connector’s formatting.

Unique Features: The most notable extra feature included with this model is its widespread support for 3D content. While users will still have to buy specialized glasses to fully enable this content format, simply having the option to play movies and video games in 3D utilizing a projector in this price range is exciting. This projector is able to project 3D content from a PC over a VGA connection, or from a Blu-ray player or set-top box over its various HDMI ports. Needless to say, having the ability to project content in 3D via multiple different connection standards certainly helps to boost the versatility of this budget-minded projector.

4. Epson VS250

Epson has long been one of the industry leaders in projector technology, and it’s easy to see why this is the case with this particular model. With a simple to understand setup and a number of connections supported, this projector is a great choice for anyone in the market for an affordable, high-quality projector.

Brightness: This model is rated for 3,200 ANSI lumens, meaning that it represents best-in-class brightness as far as this metric is concerned. This means that consumers will be able to enjoy the high-quality image produced by this unit in any setting, bright or dark. A strong bulb brightness is combined with one of the best contrast ratios on our list (i.e. 15,000:1), making it very easy to get really high-quality images on screen, even with darker or less vibrant media forms, such as black and white pictures.

Image Quality: In short, this projector has the best image quality of any model present on our list. The brightness and contrast ratio mentioned above combine with a full high definition resolution to provide one of the best looking pictures available via any projector at this price point. This model is more than suitable for projecting everyday presentations and graphics and may actually provide a bit too much capability for these mundane tasks.

Gaming and full HD movies and videos look amazing with this projector. For customers most concerned about projectors being able to keep up high-intensity gaming, we strongly suggest this product, as it offers the “best of both worlds” when it comes to providing an impressive image quality for both video games and movies.

Unique Features: The interesting fact about this projector is that it does not really manage to stand on when it comes to features alone. While the setup process is specially designed to be fast and easy for all users, that is really the only special feature that we were able to denote throughout our intensive review process. Overall, we strongly suggest this projector for anyone looking to maximize their return on investment with a high quality and extremely easy-to-use projector.

Our Conclusion: The Epson VS250 Is The Best Choice For Under $500

With a strong list of technical specifications, a reasonable price point, and an attractive form factor, the Epson VS250 offers more than enough to convince casual videophiles and everyday film fans to make this projector a part of their home theater setup. Thanks to the fact that the Epson VS250 packs full HD video into an extremely affordable form factor, this will likely satisfy any cost-conscious audiophile’s urge to build their own epic home entertainment system.

This is an exciting conclusion to come to, as Epson has done a great job of ensuring that those on a budget have access to a great projector system. Known for their dependability and steady improvements, this Epson model comes close to being the best budget-minded projector that we have seen at the under $500 price point. This exciting fact combines with an impressive video quality that is enough to satisfy even the most sensitive videophile. Featuring HDMI, VGA, and RCA video inputs, multiple different source devices are supported, helping to bolster the fact that the Epson VS250 is a solid choice for any existing home entertainment system.

4K projectors have been out on the market for a few years now, yet the price tag is still largely considered to be on the high end. You’d think that after all this time, the price would drop drastically, allowing those with lower income to experience the 4K resolution quality too.

Sadly, the price is what drives so many people away from these projectors, making them settle for cheaper alternatives. At the same time, while other projectors are cheaper, their resolution is not exactly dreamy.

So, why are 4K projectors so expensive? Let’s find out!

Are 4K Projectors Really that Expensive?

Sony VPL-VW385ES 4K Projector
Sony VPL-VW385ES 4K Projector

The price of a 4K projector usually depends on many things, such as the brand and its features. Some of them are cheaper, under the $2,000 mark. Even so, they still cost more than a thousand dollars, which is still a lot of money for many families to spend on what’s considered a nice-to-have item.

Conversely, most of the popular 4K projectors fall within the $2000 to $5000 range, and there are still many others that drift into five figures. In other words, 4K projectors require a significant amount of money, and the reality is not everyone is able to purchase one.

Is the Price Reasonable Considering the Features?

First of all, you need to know what a 4K projector does to understand its price. Basically, a 4K projector has an outstanding resolution, providing you with a quality four times the quality of full HD 1080p. That being said, such a unit provides you with an unmatched resolution when it comes to watching movies at home.

However, the resolution is not the only thing driving the price high. It goes way beyond it, and there are many other factors that contribute to the high prices that some of these products have. So, you should keep in mind that 4K projectors also give you better lenses and optics, and the image quality will be much better, while the projection will be great too.

One other thing that contributes to the high price is the fact that they have better lamps. Although at first, your initial thoughts may be that the life of the lamps is not that relevant, you would be surprised to find out that it’s quite the contrary. After all, you want everything to be top notch in order to have the best movie-watching experience. Therefore, opting for this type of system is only natural.

Another thing that is a decisive factor for these projectors’ high price is the higher contrast ratio. The contrast is relevant when it comes to the quality of the image because that is one of the things that make your movie-watching experience more fun.

4k projector quality
Courtesy of 4K.com

Also, 4K projectors have a higher light output. So, because of the process that goes on there, they generate a lot more heat. They also produce lower noise while providing a stunning and unmatched image, so that adds to the pricing as well.

In addition, 4k projectors offer better colors. They have a technology that is superior to that of other models, and it allows the colors to look gorgeous and extremely appealing.

As you can see, all these other factors create a far better-looking image, regardless of the resolution.

Why Are Some 4K Projectors More Expensive than Others?

As previously mentioned, the pricing is set according to the resolution, but there are other features that matter: lamp life, color, contrast ratio, low noise, and more. But that’s not everything there is to it.

For years, 4K projectors were hardly affordable, so those who managed to get their hands on one were considered privileged. It was commonplace for these projectors to go for around $10,000, so it was truly a dream for most to own one. Recently though, the tides have turned and you can now get a 4K projector of similar quality for around half the price you would have paid a few years ago.

Sony VPLVW285ES
Sony VPL-VW285ES 4K Projector

Basically, 4K projectors are meant to give you a certain resolution. Projectors use LCD, DLP or SXRD/LCoS to create the image, unlike 4K TVs. The latter have discrete little picture units and you can easily see them if you take a closer look.

So, with the projectors, the pixels are very tiny, much smaller than those on a TV. Making these pixels so small is expensive, hence why a 4K projector is much pricier compared to a TV.

Still, when it comes to 4K projectors that are more expensive compared to others, there’s a little trick that manufacturers use to make the prices go down. Therefore, some of the cheaper 4K projectors are, in reality, not 4K. In other words, the chips don’t have 3840 x 2160 discrete pixels. They actually use lower-resolution imaging chips and some other methods to give you a sense of “Faux-K”.

Some brands use three 1,920 x 1,080 LCD chips for each color and then offset each pixel in such a way that it looks like a different pixel on the screen. This is done very quickly, which is why the image will look just like a higher resolution one.

That means that some of the 4K projectors are not actually 4K, but they can just use and display 4K content. This type of technology is known as “4K Enhancement”, while the resolution is much smaller than the one you’d find with true 4K projectors.

4K Projector Colour
Source: Benq.com | W11000 4K UHD Projector

All in all, this is why prices have been going down over the years – some of the cheaper projectors are not truly 4K, but 4K Enhancement. It is an alternative for people with a lower budget, so they can also have a good home cinema experience.

Final Thoughts

So, after reading this article, you know the answer to the question: “why are 4K projectors so expensive?”. The truth is that they come with a lot of useful and outstanding features to those able to afford them. Some of these are an unmatched resolution, high contrast ratio, vibrant and stunning colors, low noise and much more. They have features that are not found in usual projectors, offering a movie-watching experience that many people only dream of.

And if you’re not whether you should get one…

It all depends on what you want from a projector and if you can afford it. There are deals from time to time that make the 4k projectors very affordable, but those don’t come around very often. Most of the 4k projectors are still quite expensive, and that’s a bad thing for the customers. Even so, there are plenty of people ready to tackle this type of situation in a meaningful way. It makes a lot of sense to get such a projector if you want better value and a good quality. But in the end, you are the one in control, and you get to pick whether you are willing to invest well into four or five figures on a projector.

The 4k projectors are worth purchasing if you want high-end projectors. It all comes down to the need that you have for such a solution. Most of the time that will be well worth the effort, and it all comes down to making the right pick. Study the market, determine your needs and then see which model offers you the best value. Don’t rush, just select the model that’s worth it in your opinion!