Optoma UHD50X Review: Bring the Movie Theater Home

Jeffrey Cuebas

Residence theater projectors are awesome.

For about $two,000—if you include the rate of a decent monitor to glow it on and a handful of bags of Jiffy Pop popcorn—anyone with an HDMI cable and a desire can get image top quality that really approximately rivals the shuttered regional cineplex. Throw in another $500 for a Dolby Atmos soundbar and a Roku, and you have got you a actually immersive dwelling theater. Right now, these kinds of escapes are far more specific than at any time.

When it arrives to (somewhat) affordable projection at dwelling, it’s a battle of regular technological progress among BenQ and Optoma. In excess of the previous 5 many years, the two makes have available what I’d get in touch with best successors—with each new model, general performance enhances but rates go down. Optoma’s new UHD50X is a good example. It’s $one,000 more cost-effective than the 1st 4K Optoma projector I plugged in many years in the past, and it has substantially improved image top quality.

Greater still, the UHD50X last but not least requires goal at a projector’s Achilles’ heel: input lag. Plug in a impressive gaming laptop and the new Optoma delivers a 240-Hz refresh amount, creating it visually clean and fast ample for all but the most aggressive gamers. Like watching films as substantially as you like successful existence-measurement video games of Challenge Automobiles two? So do I. Which is why the UHD50X is my most loved dwelling theater projector ideal now.

Self-Projecting

Photograph: Optoma 

I’ll be the 1st to acknowledge that projectors do not give any place around the impression top quality you are going to get from a Tv set that costs the very same rate. In simple fact, for approximately the very same dollars you’d expend on the UHD50X, you could get a new LG CX OLED (8/10, WIRED Endorses), which delivers museum-top quality image. And but, I’d still somewhat observe most matters with the projector.

Projectors are to watching films what record players are to playing songs the real explanation to purchase one is not for best fidelity, but for the working experience. When I pop on Black Panther and transform off the lights, it feels like I’m in an actual film theater instead of my dusty basement. In moments like this, that mental trip implies a whole lot.

The principal explanation I usually place prospective buyers towards TVs instead of projectors is that projectors aren’t really versatile. They are awesome when you’re re-watching the specific editions of Star Wars or episodes of The Mandalorian, but they are virtually unusable in bright rooms, with as well substantially latency to be good for everything other than video playback. Plug a videogame procedure or gaming Pc into last generation’s Optoma UHD50, and you are going to be sniped in Fortnite by any twelve 12 months previous with an Apple iphone.

With the latest model, you are going to still have to have a darkish place, but the latency problem has been solved—at minimum for a specific class of gamers. If you’ve got got a rapidly ample laptop with a good video card, the UHD50X can give a 240-Hz refresh amount at 1080p resolution when gaming. Online games will look smoother mainly because Optoma statements you may only see an input lag of 15.7 milliseconds. Which is not the best by gaming keep track of benchmarks, but still good ample for all but the most serious on the net gamers to detect. For fewer action-packed video games, it’s no concern in any way.

It’s a shame then to see no support for Nvidia’s G-Sync or AMD’s FreeSync technologies, which allows sync a screen’s refresh amount with a graphics card’s framerate, alleviating difficulties like monitor tearing in videogames. The addition would have built even far more of a no-brainer for a Pc gamer, but alas we can only hope support will occur in a potential model.

Regrettably, the improved 240-Hz refresh amount won’t implement to sport consoles like the PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox Just one, but that shouldn’t occur as a big shock. The Xbox One—the fastest of the two—maxes out at a hundred and twenty-Hz at 1080p.

But the capacity to give a 240-Hz refresh amount does pave the way for potential Optoma projectors to be rapidly ample to operate with future consoles like the PlayStation 5, which will operate 4K video games at a hundred and twenty-Hz. But do not purchase the UHD50X as a futureproofing measure, nevertheless: the UHD50X only has HDMI two. ports, so it just can’t give bigger refresh costs at 4K resolution. (It is probably potential products will give HDMI two.one.)

Rather Shots

It won’t choose substantially to get a great image out of the UHD50X. The shades occur very well calibrated out of the box, and even HDR manner is enabled quickly when the projector senses my Roku is feeding it the good things.

You will want a top quality monitor, a streaming machine (or gaming Pc), and a projector mount to hold matters regular. I’d also strongly recommend blackout curtains if you’ve got got windows—ambient light makes your impression seem washed out, no matter how fancy the projector. Also, make absolutely sure your soundbar or speaker procedure has HDMI inputs and outputs, as you may have to have it to pass video signals from your Pc or streaming machine through the soundbar and to the projector so you can have seem.

As with approximately all projectors I’ve analyzed, cinema manner is the place you may want to expend the huge the greater part of your viewing time. It delivers the most lifelike representation of what a director intended, with the draw back that it is just not as bright as other modes. Activity manner is what I’d adhere to when employing the projector with a Pc, as it will increase brightness so you can see opponents lurking in the shadows.

I watched a handful of the latest Marvel films and a good total of Netflix and Amazon Primary unique information in my handful of months with the UHD50X and everything looks great, primarily when HDR kicked in. It doesn’t give the very same highlights as a Tv set with HDR general performance, but the variation in shades is undoubtedly obvious.

In terms of sheer visual joy, there’s no contest among this and a regular Tv set. Any one who doubts this has not set on The Avengers and watched the glorious closing action sequence on a 100-inch monitor. Frankly, I want this dwelling theater to the real one. Liquor is readily served alongside popcorn, and you can pause for bathroom breaks.

A different issue which is great about projectors ideal now? They are best for outdoor film nights with friends. Don’t forget watching films together? Get a low cost outdoor monitor, convey the UHD50X outside, and observe The Huge Lebowski with the neighbors (6 ft aside!)

Residence, Theater

Photograph: Optoma 

The Optoma UHD50X is not for most people today, but it delivers far more than you might count on. If you’re a gamer who loves watching films among rounds, it’s one of the coolest interruptions you could purchase.

It is also a great decision for these who are now intrigued in putting in a projector to observe films and Tv set exhibits. You might never ever plug a Pc into the issue, but the UHD50X is still amongst the best-searching projectors for the rate.

As we’re all investing fewer time outdoor, a dwelling theater or substantial gaming monitor might give you some semblance of a mental trip. The UHD50X, albeit far more pricey than most TVs, is undoubtedly the best decision for that.

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