The ProBeam BU50NST offers a wide range of Picture modes, each appropriate for different situations. In some cases such as presentations, a bright image with pop is more important than an image with perfect colors or enhanced details in shadow and bright areas. Conversely, if you are displaying art in a museum or a corporate logo, the color accuracy may be the most important factor. One of the great things about DLP-based systems is that they can deliver both high brightness/high color accuracy and contrast from the same design – particularly with laser phosphor illumination.
After spending time viewing a variety of content, I found that the projector delivered one of the widest real world ranges of appropriate usage scenarios. Watching film content in the dark was not the absolute best experience, but when set to appropriate output level and dark room picture mode (which uses an optical aperture to further reduce output and increase contrast) the results were very pleasing to the eye. Add in a bit of ambient light and things get perceptually better.
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I greatly preferred the TV-like experience obtained by viewing in Standard mode with typical room lighting combined with some slight lighting control to minimize any light shining directing on the screen. Since the projector is not designed for a theater per se, the available picture modes and adjsutments provide both an accurate picture when needed as well as the maximum impact from Presentation mode which is great for the brightest rooms as long as color accuracy is not critical.
Overall, the video picture quality was quite good for this range of projector. Out of the box, the projector has the ability to produce relatively accurate color, with a set of controls for full calibration (should that be required). Combined with the capacity to make a very bright (albeit less “perfect”) picture when desired, the BU50NST delivers a versatile solution for a wide range of professional applications.
It is also well-suited for use as a TV in the office or home, particularly in spaces other than dedicated theaters where you would might find that a projector with a deeper black level would be a preferable option (this depends on a wide range of factors including the screen surface and reflected projector light in the room shining back onto the screen). The advantage of higher output typically overshadows the performance of designs that yield deeper blacks in applications where there is any ambient light as those improved black levels are immediately eliminated by the ambient light.
While there are some professional applications where the room is totally dark such as training simulators, in most cases projectors used in the target verticals of enterprise, education, museums, and hospitals will be used in rooms with some ambient light. In these cases, I cannot emphasize the advantages of ambient light rejecting (ALR) screens enough. The use of a dark or ALR screen combined with the high output of a laser phosphor projector such as the BU50NST can deliver a remarkable image in situations where just a few years ago you might not have considered projection. Before, you may have had to simply accept the limited performance of lamps dimming and washed out images on unity gain screens in rooms with windows, since these may have been the only options available.
Today, flat panels are certainly an option or even a preferred choice in sizes up to about 85” but if the image needs to be larger, a projector is typically the best choice unless there is the budget reserve for a direct emission LED wall.
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