Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 6500 UB LCD Projector HT Labs Measures
Full-On/Full-Off Contrast Ratio: 10,471:1
All of the measurements here, unless noted otherwise, were taken on a 78-inch-wide, 16:9 Stewart Studiotek 130 screen (gain 1.3), with the projector in its Theater Black 1 color mode, calibrated and adjusted for the most accurate image. The Brightness control (lamp mode) was on Low, the Gamma at 2.4, and the Auto Iris set to Normal (on).
The Epson’s full-on/full-off contrast ratio (sometimes referred to as the peak contrast ratio, the sequential contrast ratio, or the dynamic range) is exceptionally good with its auto iris engaged. With it turned off, the contrast ratio degrades to 3,538:1, but the black level remains above average (black full screen 0.004 foot-lamberts, white window 14.15 ft-L). With the lamp on High and the auto iris on, the peak white increased to 17.41 ft-L, but the black level degraded only marginally to 0.0017 ft-L. With the lamp on High and the auto iris off, the black level increased to 0.005 ft-L.
The color tracking charts below show how well a display adheres to the D65 standard white point. The tighter the overlap of the three primary colors, the nearer the result is to D65. I took the pre-calibration result with the Epson’s absolute color temperature set to 7500K. While the result is close to 6500K across the board (the 7500K setting was actually closer to 6500K), the Before Calibration chart shows that it still deviates from the D65 standard. (6500K is an infinite number of points forming a line on the CIE chart; D65 is the exact point we want.) After calibration, it’s far closer, with a Delta-E of less than 2.4 from 30 IRE to 90 IRE (increasing to a maximum of 5 at 20 IRE (very dark gray). Delta-E is a figure of merit that relates to how closely the calibration adheres to the D6500 white point of the HDTV standard. The important thing here is that most experts agree that a Delta-E below 5 is visibly indistinguishable from perfect, while some hold to a slightly stricter standard (a Delta-E of 3 or less).
The Epson’s luma (black and white) and chroma (color) HDMI resolution were barely short of excellent at 1080i/p and ranged from good to excellent at other standard SD and HD resolutions. But its component video response was not nearly as good: It was poor at 1080i and fair at best at lesser resolutions.
With the Output Scaling control set to 100 percent, overscan reached an insignificant 0.5 percent on two sides only in 480i component (the loss of a mere 1 percent in total image area). It was zero at all other resolutions, either on HDMI or component.—TJN
CMS Done Right
The Epson’s RGBCMY controls—its color management system (CMS)—is one of the best I’ve seen, if not the best. It let me dial in a close-to-ideal HD (Rec.709) color gamut, which included the correct luminance level for each individual color. The Before chart above shows the Epson’s oversaturated, out-of-the-box color gamut (the white triangle). A correct color gamut, meeting the HD color standard, would exactly overlay the black triangle. The After chart shows the nearly ideal result obtainable with the projector’s color management system and the right test tools. I could have used a bit more range in the green controls. The blue controls were ineffective, but the eye is relatively insensitive to blue errors. But with everything considered, more than a few other manufacturers might want to have a look at Epson’s color management system to see how it should be done.