InFocus ScreenPlay 7200 DLP Projector Page 2
As far as resolution goes, whatever you put in, the projector will put out, up to the limits of its 1,280:720 panel. HD (both 720p and a scaled 1080i) and DVD images are extremely detailed. Fine hairs and facial imperfections speak wonders for this projector's level of detail. Overall, there's a slight graininess—not enough to cause distraction at a regular viewing distance but more than that of the remarkably noise-free NEC HT1000 (see the March 2003 issue).
With regular video material, all of this brightness can be rather polarizing. Personally, I don't mind sacrificing black level for a good amount of light output. Others will argue that point. After all, most people install a projector in a light-controlled room. One thing's for sure: If you want to use a screen much smaller than 100 inches diagonally, you'll need to get a Grayhawk or other negative-gain screen. On a positive-gain screen, the image can appear to be washed out. If you plan to use a huge screen, you should be fine, as the overall drop in light output should be enough to deepen the blacks. If you don't mind the 7200's higher black level, you'll be rewarded with an image that leaps off of the screen. It's hard not to be impressed by the highly detailed, bright, and huge image that this projector puts out. Imagine the very bright, detailed image of a life-size Homer Simpson or a car chase in which the cars are actual size.
For kicks, I swapped my screen for a 6-foot-wide black matte (don't try this at home). Surprise, surprise, the black level was great. The scary thing was that the image was still watchable. The light output measured only 3.37 ft-L, but even that's impressive when you consider that it was reflected off of a theoretically nonreflective black material. You can (and I have) watch the projector with the room lights on. Try that with a CRT projector. The high-power mode increases the overall light output by another 18 to 20 percent, but the black level suffers in this mode. It also decreases the lamp's life span, so keep that in mind as you blind your neighbors with your new portable sun.
Light output aside, one concern is the 7200's green primary color. Most DLP projectors have a yellowish-green primary color from their previous life as data projectors. Most manufacturers claim that using a darker green will sacrifice light output. I'd gladly hand over several foot-lamberts for a lush, lifelike green. The 7200's green isn't nearly as bad as those of some DLP projectors we've tested, but it's still disappointing that it isn't closer to the ATSC spec. Grass, leaves, and Martians don't have the same vibrancy as a Coke can or a little old lady's hair.
Compared with a CRT projector (the de facto reference for video), the 7200 has a much higher black level, but it pummels any CRT in terms of light output. Theoretically, you could put the image from a $30,000 CRT projector on a screen, turn on the 7200, and never see the CRT image. The sky (or maybe your wall space) is the limit in terms of screen size. The InFocus has an excellent scaler, so you don't even need a progressive-scan DVD player (which is a good thing, as the 7200 inexplicably hates syncing to 480p). It even has enough inputs to accommodate a full system. While the green color accuracy is somewhat disappointing, it's not dramatically bad. For the brightest projector I've ever tested, the InFocus ScreenPlay 7200 does just about everything else right, too. If you've ever wanted a 12-foot-wide screen, this is your chance, and it's a good one.
• Insanely bright
• Faroudja processing
• Bright enough to mention that it's bright, again