The NEC NP-PA653UL is a 3LCD, large venue laser projector claiming 6,500 lumens and a 20,000-hour light engine life. It’s a commercial projector intended for advanced business and education applications. The PA653UL has WUXGA resolution (1920 x 1200), but can accept both 4K UHD and true 4K content (such as slides and presentations). At $7,779, this commercial-grade install projector will find its home in the higher education and corporate markets, likely in a high-end lecture hall, executive boardroom, church, or other large venue.
The NP-PA653UL has a normal throw distance, and has excellent placement flexibility thanks to a healthy amount of vertical and horizontal lens shift and a variety of options for Geometric Correction. The motorized lens allows you to zoom and focus using the remote control, and, as an added bonus – this projector has lens memory. That remote control has a lot of useful buttons, many of which have dual functions, so many of your most important features will be accessible via the remote.
Speaking of those features – there are a lot of them! Not only does the projector can accept 4K content, but it has HDR (HDR10 standard) and BT.2020 Color Support. I tested the HDR capability and it performs phenomenally, as seen in our photos of Journey to Space. There’s a lot of advanced features that are useful in educational, business, and creative applications such as set design for musicals and plays. Those features are Edge Blending, Projection Mapping and TileMatrix (enables 4Kx2K resolution by utilizing 4 projectors via HDBaseT Loop Out). The PA653UL can project vertically or horizontally, giving users a lot of flexibility. The projector is also 3D capable, provided that you purchase the not-included 3D emitter.
The NEC NP-PA653UL has good connectivity. On the back panel, there are HDBaseT In/Out ports (Ethernet), DisplayPort In/Out inputs, two HDMI ports, an “old school” VGA Computer In connector, a PC Control port, and a 3D Sync input. This projector does not have built-in speakers, so there is an Audio Out port that you will likely find handy. There is also an Audio In port, and a Remote input for wired remote control of the projector. The PA653UL has a USB port on top of a LAN (RJ-45) connector, which is a configuration we are beginning to see more often on business and education projectors, and expect it to become commonplace before long.
The picture quality of the PA653UL is stellar. Excellent color and an incredibly sharp image at WUXGA resolution. With 4K content, the sharpness is truly remarkable. Text and presentations are easy to read, with small type being legible even from a distance. All of the color modes look great, even the brightest modes, and it has a DICOM SIM. Mode for viewing x-rays and other films. The projector performed exceptionally well, and though it was just a few hundred lumens short of claim, it will be bright enough for most applications. And, if it’s not – hey, NEC has brighter models for you, for a higher price point, of course.