It’s not often that you get a such a wide variety of features on a projector under £600 and still keep the level of quality high, but that’s exactly what Viewsonic hope to do with the PRO7827HD…
Set as a cut above the entry level specification, the PRO7827HD angles at giving you the most bang for your well-earned buck. With big screen TV’s becoming ever more affordable, it’s no surprise to see projectors also trying to up the ante, so what’s so special about this one?
The Viewsonic PRO7827HD is a Full HD resolution DLP projector with Rec.709 colour specification. It has been designed with better components in mind (such as Viewsonic’s SuperColor RGB Colour wheel) in order to give you a viewing experience more akin to the four-figure price range. Not only does it offer a wide variety of connections (3 HDMI’s, component, composite, VGA and even S-video!), they’ve nearly all been placed behind a removable plastic casing designed to keep cable clutter to a minimum. The third HDMI & USB have been hidden behind a smaller casing on the side designed to accommodate smaller input devices such as portable streamers/receivers. Its functionality is also well thought out too, with a keystone facility to un-skew an elongated image and a lens shift dial which adds 20% to the vertical placement of the projection. All of this is ideal for people who wish to retro-fit a projector into a room in the home without having to rearrange the furniture or fixtures. For those with more of an office environment in mind, the included remote can also act as a laser pointer and as the buttons of a computer mouse too. Nifty.
When setting it up on our store’s demo room coffee table, the lens shift made life a lot easier – rather than having to fiddle with the individual leg heights. There is an option to stretch each corner of the image, but when mounted straight in front of the screen you won’t need to. We would always recommend a projector screen with the right whiteness & gain (reflectiveness), but for those who aren’t using one there’s an option to select the colour of the surface you’re projecting on to. Then it’s simply a case of calibrating the picture to your liking and to suit your environment.
The PRO7827HD comes with six picture modes. We would suggest you only use “Brightest” mode when you’re in an environment that has lots of natural light. We found that when being used in a dark room the best balance of detail, natural colour and saturation was “Cinema” mode (capable of Rec.709 standard), plus it avoids a lot of picture noise. You may naturally you may find yourself tweaking the brightness, contrast and colour saturation in rooms that have some ambient light – these are all easy to access form the menu. The 2200 lumens brightness makes sure that the picture is vibrant enough to be engaging, but you’ll definitely get a more exciting all-round picture if you spend a bit more, such as the BenQ W2000. As with most DLP projectors, you’ll find that over exaggerated colours can become very tiring on the eye, which is why we prefer “Cinema” mode – but if you want your picture to be a bit more vibrant use the “Normal” preset and rein the colours in slightly. (To find out more about the differences between DLP and LCD projectors, please give your local store a call today, for an obligation-free demonstration).
We used a Full HD Blu-ray copy of X-Men: Days of Future Past to test out the PRO7827HD. We were not disappointed! The opening scene shows off the colour capabilities of the projector very well. The mutant-hunting Sentinels change from ice to diamond and then fire, all against a dark and gloomy background of a warehouse. The adaptable changing skin of the droids is full of detail, as are the hair and facial features of the X-Men. As with any budget projector, you’ll find that the contrast ratio struggles to truly convey dark scenes as well as four-figure products, like the Optoma HD50, but we’re happy with how the PRO7827HD performs. Switching to a Humax FVP4000T Freeview box shows that the natural drop to standard definition can be handled fairly well – although those who like to fiddle with motion processing to smooth out lower resolution images will find more capabilities on other brands. Unless you have the sound hooked up to capable home cinema set-up or soundbar, you may find the fan noise to be irksome, so it’s best to put it in “Eco” mode so as not to be distracting.
Overall, this is a perfectly capable projector and is well suited for those who will use it for both work and play. The black chassis means it won’t stand out too much on a shelf and it’s small enough to move around, should you not want to keep it out or in the same room. The Viewsonic does a fine job of giving you an enjoyable cinema experience.
Author: Steve, Bristol store