Zack Braff, the lovable doctor from NBC's Scrubs, wrote, directed, and starred in Garden State. Normally I would say that trifecta is the recipe for a self-indulgent disaster, but in this case it really works. It's the old story of messed-up boy meets messed-up girl, and together they reduce their respected messed-upness. It's remarkably well done and makes you feel all warm and fuzzy.
Perfect color and an amazing black level—in other words, everything you'd expect from a CRT.
It's hard to talk about CRTs these days. Sure, they still make up the majority of the display market, but they're just not sexy. It's like a Toyota Camry—it does everything it's supposed to do, and it does it well, but no one really lusts after it. That analogy is probably too harsh for the Toshiba 34HF84, which has more-accurate colors and a darker black level than any display I've reviewed in recent memory.
I've been a fan of Liquid Crystal on Silicon technology for some time now. It has the potential to take the better aspects of DLP and LCD and fuse them into a bright, high-resolution hybrid. Unfortunately, there are two main reasons why you don't see more LCOS products on the market. The first, and perhaps the most important, is the inability for anyone to efficiently mass-produce lots of working chips. At CES 2004, Intel announced that they were getting into the LCOS chip-making business. If anyone could make LCOS chips on the cheap, Intel could. Well, they couldn't. This is just fine for JVC, who has been making LCOS products for years under their D-ILA (Direct-drive Image Light Amplifier) moniker.
In March of 2003, we had a plasma Face Off that featured eight displays. What surprised us all was that the clear winner was not the brightest, nor the one with the most resolution. In fact, of the mix of budget and midlevel 42-inch plasmas, the winner was an enhanced-definition set with the second lowest price of the bunch. It was a Panasonic, and it won for the same reason that this plasma is so good: black level.
I've recently noticed that most video companies have names that begin with letters at the end of the alphabet and most audio companies have names that start with letters at the beginning of the alphabet. Most of my theories on this are far-fetched (some involve mind control) and get me "the look" from other people whenever I share them. My need to get out more notwithstanding, perhaps it has something to do with the word "video" starting with a "V" and the word "audio" starting with an "A." If that's the case, then Vidikron not only starts with a "V," but it shares its first three letters with the word "video."
This unassuming little projector surprised me. It's not as attractive as the Epson, it's not as compact as the BenQ, and its price is between them both. Without a doubt, though, this was our winner. Why? Well, in a word: black level. OK, so that's two words.
It's quite impressive what $1,300 will get you nowadays. In many ways, the Home 10+ looks the most like a home theater projector of those in our Face Off. The smooth, pearlescent case looks a lot like a Chiclet on steroids, and this was the only projector with a dedicated component video input, in addition to RGB.