Hisense PX1-PRO TriChroma Laser Cinema Review - Performance

March 16, 2022 / By Project Reviews Staff

BLACK LEVEL AND SHADOW DETAIL

Hisense lists the PX1-PRO's Dynamic contrast as 1,000,000:1. The projector's black level was quite good and in line with what I've come to expect from Hisense, but it is still closer to dark gray than deep black. This was obvious when watching darker night clips on my matte white screen.

The PX1-PRO blacks were better than typical DLP projectors. Some traditional home projectors in this projector's price range can provide better black level and shadow detail, but they are not ultra-short-throw units.

The reality is that PX1-PRO Laser Cinema owners will likely place the projector in rooms with higher ambient light, limiting black levels.

If you want the deepest blacks possible from the PX1-PRO, you should consider purchasing an ALR higher gain screen. This type of screen highlights deep black levels and wider viewing angles over maximum ambient light rejection.

Projector calibration is also highly recommended and does wonders for the already well-tuned images the projector produces.

BRIGHTNESS

The TriChroma triple-laser light engine faithfully recreates a rated brightness of 2,200 lumens peak brightness, which is lower than previous Hisense UST models I’ve previously reviewed. These ratings should still allow users to achieve good highlights with deep black levels and shadow details, especially when viewed in a light-controlled space.

Just how close did the PX1-PRO come to hitting its manufacturer's brightness rating? To determine the PX1-PRO's brightness capabilities, I set the projector to Sports mode, the brightest picture mode, with HDR turned off at my source and the Light Level at 10. I then took three to four readings about 15-20% out from the center of the lens.

The Hisense PX1-PRO measured 2,341 lumens which are 141 lumens brighter than Hisense’s brightness claim. I also measured the brightness of each of the projectors preset picture modes. The results are in the chart below.

 

HDR PRESETS LUMENS SDR PRESETS LUMENS
HDR VIVID 1320 SDR VIVID 2315
HDR STANDARD 1271 SDR STANDARD 1835
HDR ENERGY SAVINGS 763 SDR ENERGY SAVINGS 1271
HDR GAME 1341 SDR GAME 2333
HDR SPORTS 1400 SDR SPORTS 2341
HDR THEATER 1008 SDR THEATER DAY 1553
HDR FILMMAKER 713 SDR THEATER NIGHT 1629
    SDR FILMMAKER 1977

SKIN TONES

The screenshots above give a rough idea of the skintone accuracy however, the skin tone will look better than these photos show when viewed in person. Included are a variety of screenshots showing skin tones under different scene lighting.

The THEATER DAY, THEATER NIGHT, and FILMMAKER picture modes produced the most accurate skin tones out of the box. Overall, skin tones were excellent.

Above are images of a variety of videos and photos in 4K and HD resolution. Like all our photos, they remain unadjusted for color, so they do not look as good as the projector produced. All the HD and 4K images were taken with the PX1-PRO set to either Vivid or Standard modes, the best-preset modes for non-SDR viewing in a room with ambient light.

COLOR REPRODUCTION

The Hisense PX1-PRO TriChroma laser light source reproduces a very wide color gamut. Importantly, Hisense has the color science knowledge to make good use of the projector's extended color gamut options. Hisense is one of the world's largest suppliers of flat-panel TVs, and they've brought that world of color experience to the PX1-PRO's out-of-the-box color tuning.

The Hisense PX1-PRO has a total of eight preset picture modes for SDR and seven presets for HDR (two theater modes in SDR and only one in HDR). 

The VIVID, GAME, and SPORTS modes are the brightest and are designed to fight through high ambient light. The one thing you might notice is that these brighter modes are clearly bluer in tone. In addition, Hisense also includes an Energy Saving mode.

The THEATER DAY and THEATER NIGHT modes were the most accurate factory SDR picture modes and nearest my color temperature target of 6,500K. These modes deliver accurate colors in SDR, with a tradeoff on the projector's brightness output.

Overall, the Hisense PX1-PRO Laser Cinema preset picture modes deliver picture quality that will satisfy most folks considering it for their homes. Below are some images captured that I think are great examples of this projector's color capabilities. For example, the images from Steven Spielberg's "West Side Story" are incredibly amazing without being oversaturated. Certainly, if you want that oversaturated look, the Dynamic mode gets it done. 

I can sum up my feelings about the PX1-PRO's color with one word ― beautiful.

The PX1-PRO out of the box is better than most Laser Cinema and DLP projectors. That being said, calibration always produces the best results, so for this projector, I calibrated the THEATER NIGHT mode for SDR.

Screen material can significantly impact the overall picture, and we don't recommend using someone else's calibration adjustments. If your room is brighter/darker or your walls are a different color, copying someone else's results can cause more harm than good. However, below are the before and after results in my room.

4K HDR10/HLG AND SDR VIDEO QUALITY

Seeing a difference between HDR and SDR has often been challenging. The fact is that projectors cannot reproduce the brightness range found in HDR content. Even with dynamic tone mapping, which this projector does not offer, HDR is still hard to do on a projector. 

The PX1-PRO supports 4K HDR10/HLG. The preset modes are clearly something that Hisense has paid attention to. Each projector's preset mode is tuned differently depending on the type of content you are viewing (SDR or HDR). The presets change names depending on whether the content is in 4K HDR or SDR.

The PX1-PRO did a good job balancing the need to deliver full-screen brightness while still producing bright highlight detail. This high level of performance can be directly attributed to the Hisense years of producing 4K HDR flat panels and Laser Cinemas.

There is a clear difference in performance between HDR and SDR on this projector. While most Blu-ray UHD content is available in HDR10, a lot of 4K streaming material is still only 4K SDR. The PX1-PRO had no problem delivering sharp, detailed 4K imagery.

HDR content looked better on the Hisense PX1-PRO than most of the other 4K HDR projectors I have reviewed. The PX1-PRO's ability to produce a wider color gamut than most projectors paid off when viewing HDR material.

HDTV AND SPORTS

The fact is most TV shows and live broadcasts will likely continue to be produced in HD for several years, so good 4K upscaling is a critical feature. The PX1-PRO's upscaling is excellent. Whether I watched 720p sports from ESPN or 1080p Blu-ray content, it all looked terrific.

Motion Estimation Motion Compensation (MEMC) technology uses an advanced, algorithmic technique to predict where a frame is in video content and, through the algorithm, insert an additional frame between each of the originals. MEMC is a type of frame interpolation technology designed to smooth out the blur when watching content that requires a clearer image, like sports and video games,

The PX1-PRO includes six motion compensation presets (CUSTOM, FILM, CLEAR, STANDARD, SMOOTH, and OFF). You also have CUSTOM mode, where you can make manual adjustments.

Black Widow from an HD source

The FILM mode was designed especially for a movie shot in 24p, and it eliminates 3:2 Pulldown for more cinematic motion. When viewing 30p or 60p material, the PX1-PRO was set to CLEAR mode, and I did not notice too many motion artifacts.

SOUND QUALITY

The sound quality on the Hisense PX1-PRO is excellent.

The PX1-PRO is one of the best sounding projectors I have reviewed in the last two years, offering on-device audio performance in the same range as the much more expensive Hisense L9G.

The front of the PX1-PRO cabinet holds a 30-watt speaker array, and Hisense makes good use of every watt. Hisense has, yet again, managed to build in a sound system that has better range and more dynamic sound than many standalone soundbars under $400.

When it comes to bass performance, the PX1-PRO goes deeper than I expected a Laser Cinema should be able to go, and it does it without adding in audible distortion. I'm not saying this PX1-PRO wouldn't benefit from adding a subwoofer, but the sound that the PX1-PRO produces is better than most competitive Laser Cinema projectors or televisions I've ever heard.

AUDIBLE NOISE

The PX1-PRO is a very quiet projector. Even set to its highest Light level, I could barely hear the unit's fan from my sitting position during quiet scenes. This low amount of noise from the projector's cooling system is a testament to Hisense's design and heat management skills. 

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