When looking around the menus, I quickly spotted in the Expert Settings, a feature labeled: Input Lag Reduction. They could have simplified, by just renaming it: “Gamers, turn this on!”
With the Input Lag Reduction turned On, I hooked up my Leo Bodnar Input Lag measuring device, expecting some respectable readings. When you have everything set up, we’re looking at 27ms input lag, which is pretty great for projectors.
Watch out, though, the smallest input lag happens when playing 4K games. Because the Sony has to deal with processing and upscaling lower resolution games (i.e. 1080p), the input lag is slightly longer, but still very respectable.
Sony provides a Game mode as one of the eight image presets. So, next I switched to Game Mode. That, in conjunction with the Input Lag Reduction feature turns the Sony VPL-VW295ES into a legit gaming projector with an average input lag of just about 40ms.
Here’s how we call input lag times in terms of performance.
55ms +/-: “Acceptable” to all but the most hard core, high speed gamers.
33-40ms: “Good. Definitely fine for all but the most aggressive. (That’s just over 1 frame behind on a 30fps game, or 2 frames behind on a 60 fps game. The Sony came in just over that 2 frame delay. Pretty good.
27ms – Reasonably great!
Seriously great is in the 16-20ms range, and ideal is, of course 0, but it’s been a while (years) since I’ve reviewed a projector with less than 16ms lag.
Count the VW295ES as a very respectable gaming projector. Now if you (or the friend you are buying the 295ES for), already owns a custom $3K gaming computer and a pricy zero input lag monitor, then you might still find this Sony to be good enough. But for the rest of us, the Sony should perform brilliantly, even on teams first person shooters like COD, etc., - unless, of course, you are competing in the national championship.
For perspective, this new Sony is even a bit faster than Epson’s current dedicated home theater projectors – HC4010 and 5040UB, etc. It’s faster than the 4K UHD projectors we’ve had in from Optoma, BenQ and Vivitek.