For your extra thousands of dollars, you do get a projector with very good native resolution. It’s not up there with the better JVCs, but it’s very good, delivering some of the best black levels around, for a projector with no dynamic iris.
The LS10500 does black frames – it shuts off the lasers when there is nothing to project – a black frame. Zero, nada, none – the amount of light coming out of the lens when the whole frame is supposed to be black. That is impressive, but the LS10500 would be even better if it also used the laser engine to emulate a dynamic iris, as the Acer VL7860 does. Oh well, the blacks are still very good overall. Better than the 5040UB, which is our benchmark for being a projector that can produce very dark blacks – a real “ultra high contrast” projector.
As with virtually every Epson, the out of the box picture quality is extremely good. I only count Sony as being even better at delivering modes that not only look great, but measure very close to a good calibration. The Epsons, and definitely the LS10500, deliver very nice color in every mode but the brightest, and it’s not bad there, better than most projectors brightest modes.
Since I’m talking picture quality, let’s talk HDR. When I reviewed the LS10500 that was before the last two firmware updates. These are the same as the ones all the other Epson 4K capable projectors that support HDR. In the original review, the LS10500 exhibited too much dimness, a problem for many HDR projectors – it’s a trade off between a bit dim and more HDR “pop” or less HDR pop, and brighter middle ranges.
The new firmware markedly improved the picture on the 5040UB, and should have the same result with the LS10500, making the current LS10500 or anyone that’s been upgraded, a projector, producing a picture superior to when I reviewed it (and I liked it back then, too). Of course, the Epson has CFI, and a wide range of other image processing options.
This Epson is a 1920x1080 x2 pixel shifter, which allows it to produce a quite visibly sharper image with 4K content than with normal 1080 content. In theory, it’s a hair less sharp than the 4K UHD models (especially the 1920x1080x4 pixel shifters).
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