AVS Discussions

Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread

AVSCraig

  • *****
  • 1943
  • Home Theater Lover / Sales / Advice
    • AV Science, Inc
Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #30 on: October 10, 2017, 02:09:12 PM »
Just had a VW360 (VW385) installed in one of our demo rooms today and it´s certainly a nice machine... Will have the 260 / 285 installed tomorrow. We also had the VW760 (VW885) installed and calibrated.

In short, as for VW360;

1. Quite impressive blacks - albeit still not "JVC blacks", especially if compared to the X/RS7-9XX(X).

2. They have to have done something with their lenses, at least for this unit, sharpness was quite good... Still, if compared to - let´s say - JVC DLA-Z1 / RS4500, it might fall a bit short, but that´s a completely different league. 

3. As for HDR, I had to pull the "HDR contrast" all the way to 99 (out of 100), i.e. basically remove the entire effect - to leave enough light for the 10 ft wide screen. It´s simply not a HDR machine in my opinion, albeit it´s not only light output that is required in such regards as I do believe the DLA-X7500 (RS520) looks very well @ HDR with a bit of upward tone mapping applied to it. Still, using the new Sony UBP-X1000ES UHD player outputting HDR in SDR (maintaining 4K and 10-bit that is), it looked very very nice!

As for the laser VPL-VW760, there are several issues with the pre-production unit we have currently installed for this particular launch event, lens focus is off and there are some issues with the scaling and so on, but even so, it looks quite nice too on our 13 ft wide screen. Still, I can see quite the difference from the DLA-Z1 / RS4500 in terms of light output @ SDR (HDR is too dark anyhow...).

I´ll get back with more impressions after the event tomorrow! :)

Excellent - thank you for the report. I look forward to hearing more.
Direct (585) 671-2972 8:30am - 4:30pm Pacific 
www.avscience.com  craig@avscience.com
We carry projectors, screens, speakers, receivers etc. !!
Twitter - @AVS_Craig

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #31 on: October 11, 2017, 11:41:01 AM »
So, we measured out on/off to about 12k:1 for VW285 (VW260) @ mid zoom and about 22k:1 for the VW385 (VW360) @ max zoom. The added "pop" from the iris on the VW385 was certainly visible to some extent. However, as they were installed in very different rooms, one using a 10ft (VW385) and the other 7ft (VW285) screen it´s really not fair to compare directly, they both look quite nice. Some sharpening artefacts are indeed apparent, and for people that like motion flow, it is not available in 4K as is the case for the VW760.
Proudly Representing DreamScreen.no // ScreenAcoustics.com // AT screens & more!

Founder AVforum.no // Norway´s leading AV community since 2002

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #32 on: October 12, 2017, 11:55:20 AM »
Just had a VW360 (VW385) installed in one of our demo rooms today and it´s certainly a nice machine... Will have the 260 / 285 installed tomorrow. We also had the VW760 (VW885) installed and calibrated.

In short, as for VW360;

1. Quite impressive blacks - albeit still not "JVC blacks", especially if compared to the X/RS7-9XX(X).

2. They have to have done something with their lenses, at least for this unit, sharpness was quite good... Still, if compared to - let´s say - JVC DLA-Z1 / RS4500, it might fall a bit short, but that´s a completely different league. 

3. As for HDR, I had to pull the "HDR contrast" all the way to 99 (out of 100), i.e. basically remove the entire effect - to leave enough light for the 10 ft wide screen. It´s simply not a HDR machine in my opinion, albeit it´s not only light output that is required in such regards as I do believe the DLA-X7500 (RS520) looks very well @ HDR with a bit of upward tone mapping applied to it. Still, using the new Sony UBP-X1000ES UHD player outputting HDR in SDR (maintaining 4K and 10-bit that is), it looked very very nice!

As for the laser VPL-VW760, there are several issues with the pre-production unit we have currently installed for this particular launch event, lens focus is off and there are some issues with the scaling and so on, but even so, it looks quite nice too on our 13 ft wide screen. Still, I can see quite the difference from the DLA-Z1 / RS4500 in terms of light output @ SDR (HDR is too dark anyhow...).

I´ll get back with more impressions after the event tomorrow! :)

Thanks for your thoughts. :)
Mike Garrett
AV Science Sales
585-671-2968
mike@avscience.com

JVC, Sony, Epson, Marantz, Denon, Yamaha, Onkyo, Stewart, Seymour, Screen Innovations, Screen Excellence, DNP, Carada, Da-Lite, Vutec, Triad, SVS, Martin Logan, Def Tech, RBH, M&K and many other brands.

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #33 on: October 12, 2017, 02:41:51 PM »
RS4xx vs 285ES Comparison

https://i.imgur.com/z8rWxDw.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread

       Sony’s VPL-VW285ES is the company’s newest, least expensive, 4K SXRD projector to date. There isn’t a whole lot new to say about this projector as it only offers some subtle changes to previous 3xx 4K SXRD projectors. The overall feel for it’s image quality remains much the same when comparing it to older 3xx Sony 4K projectors. The huge difference this year is how much money it costs to get the level of performance that, up until now, cost you 5-figures. It now costs you half as much money to jump into a native 4K projector at just $4999. Overall, the image quality on the 285ES is something to behold. Its image is bright, sharp, high contrast, with generally good video processing and excellent motion handling. There is very little to complain about with its image. There are only a handful of projectors out there that can match or best it’s image. Most of these projectors cost a lot more money. Near the price of this Sony, JVC’s DLA-RS440 is the closest in feature-set and performance. This is the only other projector you should have serious considerations for unless you have room in your budget for models costing much more. Such models include the Sony VPL-VW385ES ($7999), Sony VPL-VW 675ES ($14,999), JVC DLA-RS540 ($5999) or the Epson LS10500 ($7999).

       At this price point, Sony seems to be taking aim at JVCs DLA-RS440 with the 285ES. And that is what this write up is aimed to do; compare the 285ES to JVCs lowest end unit, the RS440. Priced at just a $1000 US above the RS440, you’re getting a true native 4K projector with much of the same support for UHD Blu-ray that the RS440 has. Based upon the price difference and feature set, this seems to be the appropriate comparison to make as I feel most people looking to spend about $5000 will only be looking at these models. I would like to spend the rest of this write up comparing the two. If you’re looking for more information about Sony specific features, I suggest reading a review for the 675ES as essentially all of these features (minus a couple, which will be discussed) have carried over to the 285ES. They have been talked to death in those reviews.

       Both the 285ES and RS440 offer support for HDR10, HLG HDR, wide color gamut and still support active 3D. Though offering true native 4K panels, the 285ES does have a few short falls compared to the RS440. This is mainly due in part to Sony offering two similarly equipped step up models, the 385ES and 675ES. Reductions in feature-set and performance needed to be made to justify the more expensive models. All three of these projectors use the vast majority of the same hardware components inside each. The 285ES is the most stripped down native 4K model Sony currently sells. The next model up, the 385ES at $8000, adds an iris in the lens which can be used as a manual iris, dynamic iris or a combination of both. This means the 285ES lacks black level control and contrast improvements via both manual and dynamic iris methods. With the 285ES, the only black level control you have is a lamp brightness setting, just low and high. The key difference here is that darker content look better on the more expensive Sony 4K projectors, thus justifying the increase in cost. You also lose out on a lens memory feature by going with the 285ES, which the pricier models support. Lens memory comes in handy for those with an anamorphic aspect ratio screen looking to easily switch between anamorphic and 16/9 content without the need for an anamorphic lens. Lastly, the 285ES also lacks the auto-calibration functionality that it’s two bigger brothers get. This allows you to tidy up the factory-set calibration after you’ve put hundreds or thousands of hours on your bulb.

        Price-wise I do think these were very appropriate things to take away from this projector to allow this unit to be priced at $4999. The only other area that might have been appropriate would have been a hit on lumen output, but at a maximum of 1200 calibrated lumens, I think Sony made the right move as HDR performance would have suffered greatly with less available light output. This is an area where the 675ES pulls ahead of both the 285ES and 385ES offering several hundred more lumens. This is due to the 280 watt lamp the 675ES gets over the 225 watt lamp found in both the 285ES and 385ES. If you’re looking into getting a better HDR experience and you have a big screen, say around 120” or larger, the 675ES (or a brighter JVC model) makes a lot more sense. As many will tell you, HDR and wide color gamut performance gives a far greater sense of improvement in image quality than the relatively small bump in fine detail you get on UHD blu-ray titles. Better performance in these areas is especially important for those looking to make a long term investment in their projector purchase in a world about the dominated by HDR. Unless you plan on upgrading every year or so, you may want to opt for a brighter projector as the future is going to be all about HDR. The 285ES is much more comfortable with it’s 1200 lumens of peak brightness with screens at 120” or smaller, or possibly a screen larger than this that has some positive gain.

   The RS440 does offer several things the 285ES does not. Those things would include a lens iris that can be used like the 385ES’ (manual, dynamic or both), around 600 more calibrated lumens, roughly double the native contrast and about an order of magnitude more dynamic contrast. Brightness and contrast capabilities are the biggest differences between these two models and are the things that will stick out most if you were to compare the two images next to each other. The RS440 also has lens memories, creative frame interpolation that works with a 4K source (the 285ES is limited to 1080p sources) and an auto-calibration suite with the option to upload custom gamma curves and custom color profiles offering greater HDR flexibility. I've also found that the JVC has a slightly nicer lens that has better focus uniformity and can focus on pixels better. The RS440 has two full-spec HDMI 2.0 ports which includes 18Gbps throughput. The 285ES has two proprietary HDMI 2.0 ports that only support 13.5Gbps throughput. 13.5Gbps is enough bandwidth to fully support UHD blu-ray as the specification stands now. This means UHD resolution at 60 frames per second at 10bit 4:2:0. However, the 285ES does introduce very visible banding within the image when a UHD/60p 10bit 4:2:0 signal is sent to the projector. It seems this is a video processing issue. Hopefully Sony can address this problem with a future firmware update. There is very little video content on UHD bluray encoded this way. So this issue should be more of a concern for gamers who want to take advantage of 4K HDR gaming at 60p. The JVC does not have any banding issues with this type of content sent to the projector.

       At the time of writing this, the RS440 is not out yet. I’m using the RS400 as a frame of reference here for the purposes of this comparison. The RS400 should be considered the same to the RS440 as far as brightness, contrast and color performance goes. We know it uses the same chassis, power supply, DiLA panels, lens, iris system, fans and lamp as the RS400. General performance is very similar, with the new eshift5 system being touted as having better 4K detail with 4K source material. That claim will have to be looked at more closely to see how accurate it actually is. The main differences between the RS400 and RS440 are mainly in newly developed software implementations. This would include a better MPC (Multiple Pixel Control) implementation that extracts more detail from a 4K source than it did on previous models. JVC says this new software was created based upon things they learned when creating their first consumer-based native 4K projector; the RS4500. The RS440 also includes a low-lag input mode for better gaming performance and an update to CMD (Clear Motion Drive) which fixes a processing issue where banding was added into the image.

        Native contrast is excellent on the 285ES, but is beat out by the RS440.  But this should not come as a surprise, as it’s been this way for years. JVC has almost always had a lead with on/off contrast. Placing the lens at the telephoto end of it’s zoom range, with my Minolta CL200 measuring towards the lens at around 8 inches away, the 285ES achieved 17,826:1 on/off contrast. At maximum zoom, under the same measuring conditions, the 285ES achieves 12,989:1 on/off contrast. The JVC RS400 measures in at 23,432:1 at the telephoto end of it’s zoom range and 16,834:1 at maximum zoom with it's lens iris fully open. Closing the iris manually allows for even greater native contrast, up to about 40000:1. The JVC has a dynamic iris which increases contrast dynamically to about 10 times it's native performance. With the DI engaged, the JVC had an obvious advantage in contrast when A/B'ing the two images on the same screen.

   Measuring lumen output, also with my Minolta CL200, shows that the 285ES is capable of 1221 lumens at maximum zoom in high lamp mode. Low lamp mode at maximum zoom, the 285ES is capable of 911 lumens. The RS400 measures in at 1234 lumens at maximum zoom in low lamp and 1743 lumens at maximum zoom in high lamp mode. This is another area where the JVC pulls ahead. If you want a native 4K projector from Sony with more lumens you'll need to step up to a more expensive unit.

        The 285ES needs to be in high lamp to match the RS440 in brightness (at around 1200 lumens from each) so the comparisons should be made with each projector set to the mode where light output remains equal. For HDR performance, if the 285ES were placed in low lamp mode, it would a suffer peak white bright deficit placing it’s HDR performance lower than that of the RS440. Unfortunately, the 285ES is much louder, both objectively and subjectively. I placed a dB meter exactly 10 inches away from each projector to get a sense of how much of a measured difference there was relative to one another. The 285ES measured in at 44.3dB and the JVC measured in at 34.5dB. This is a very noticeable difference in person. The JVC was measured with eshift enabled. The Sony was much quieter in it’s low lamp mode, but again, this lowers its lumen output to only 900 lumens. This is fine for SDR, but for HDR the 285ES really needs to be in high lamp mode to look best. The Sony defaults to high lamp mode when you enabled the REC2020/HDR10 mode inside the projector. I should also note that the pitch of fan noise leaving the Sony is higher, whereas the JVC has a more low pitch mechanical tone. I’ve recorded both projectors from the same distance with a high quality Marantz Professional microphone. Hear the relative difference for yourself. See here:



     Being forced to use high lamp mode has two issues. One is that it draws more power and the other is that due to the lamp being used in it’s higher wattage state, it means there is more heat being put into your room as well. With my Kill-a-Watt P3 meter, the Sony pulls 42 more watts from the wall (310 watts, vs 268 watts) to output the same amount of lumens and also outputs hotter air and does so faster due to the fan speed being higher than the JVC.  I measured the exhaust air to be 12°F hotter on the Sony (114°F vs 126°F). These are just some practical considerations when making a decision between the two. The Sony will be louder, less efficient and heat up your room more so than the JVC to give you the same amount of lumens.

   As with previous 4K SXRD projectors, native motion handling is class leading among reflective-LCD type displays. While having roughly the same measured motion resolution in video test patterns, around 300 lines, subjectively these SXRD panels pull slightly ahead of JVCs DiLA panels with subjectively less added blur. Sony also has excellent creative frame interpolation modes with minimal artifacts present for those wishing to achieve greater-than-300 lines of resolution. Smooth Low and Smooth High does produce the classic Soap Opera look that many purists dislike, but are greatly beneficial for things like sports, video games, animated titles or 3D titles. The 285ES does offer a black-frame-insertion mode with extremely minimal flicker. This mode is called Impulse. This is a great way to achieve more than 300 lines of motion resolution without the SOE appearance introduced in your image. It’s nice to see Sony still offering this mode. JVC does not offer a BFI mode anymore. Kudo’s to Sony for this.

     Out of the box color and grayscale on the 285ES is exemplary measuring in with deltaE’s under 3. This is much better than the out of the box performance of my RS400. You’ll need  to step up to JVCs more expensive units for better color and greyscale out of the box. The out of the box gamma is also good with the 2.4 tracking well which I found looked great with SDR content. However the 285ES does struggle a bit with it’s 2084 EOTF which means that you’re going to get a less-than-ideal HDR experience. Unfortunately there is no way to calibrate the 285ES’s 2084 EOTF which means it can struggle a bit in giving a reference HDR10 experience. Your only option to get better HDR10 performance, without the need to spend more money on something like a Lumagen Pro, would be to use Sony’s Image Director software and create your own custom gamma curve. But the granularity of what you can accomplish is not as fine as what the JVC offers with Arve’s tool. The out of the box 2084 EOTF on current JVCs is excellent, but if you'd like, you also have the option to create your own EOTF with different clip points with a piece of software called Arve’s tool. This software adds a level of granularity and customization that the Sony lacks.

Sony’s Out of the Box EOTF

https://i.imgur.com/Nkk528d.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread

       Hopefully Sony addresses this issue with a firmware update. Sony’s “Image Director” calibration software is hard to obtain and is something that is out of the scope of most end users who have very little calibration experience and/or who also lack an appropriate meter to compensate for these deficiencies. When you look at both of these units from an objective and subjective point of view, it’s easy to say that the JVC is better overall for HDR. You’re getting more brightness, more contrast, the same color saturation ability and a better out of the box or custom EOTF. If Sony addresses the out of the box EOTF, it may help lessen the gap in HDR performance.

       3D performance goes to JVC overall. It’s brighter, has more contrast, less crosstalk and with it’s universal 3-pin port you can use any 3D sync device and glasses that you wish. The Sony has a built in RF emitter that does work with a few “universal” branded RF glasses as well as the stock Sony glasses, but the selection is not as big as what the JVC offers. The JVC does have some mild flicker that can be seen from behind the glasses whereas the Sony does not exhibit this phenomenon. But then again, the Sony shows more crosstalk. Some say the flicker bothers them more and others say the crosstalk bothers them more. Personally speaking, as long as the JVC has been on for at least a half an hour, the flicker is something that I don’t really notice after a few minutes. Issues with ghosting has always been more bothersome to me.

RS400 vs 285ES

All Current JVCs
https://i.imgur.com/FVYDNmH.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


285ES
https://i.imgur.com/iab8XMg.jpg
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


     Input lag is essentially a tie. Both offer a low lag input mode which removes or lightens some of the video processing to achieve faster input-to-display performance. With the Leo Bodnar input lag tester I measured 35.2 milliseconds of input lag on the 285ES. Without the low lag mode enabled I measured 121 milliseconds. This device only outputs 1080p, so a native 4K signal should be a little faster, but unless you’re a professional gamer 35 milliseconds is already very fast and even less time is not something most casual gamers are going to notice. The JVC measures in at 33 milliseconds in it’s low lag mode. The low lag mode is also available with a 4K image going to the JVC. This is not available on the Sony, but with less video processing needed for the Sony to display an image, it should handle 4K sources very well too. With the low lag mode disabled the JVCs measure similar to the 285ES at 130ms. So again, for all intents and purposes, both are equally good in this regard.

       An area where the 285Es pulls way ahead of the RS440 is with HDMI sync times. It’s a night and day difference. The Sony only takes 5-6 seconds to lock onto a signal and display an image. It can take the JVC up to 15-20 seconds to lock onto a signal and display an image. Sync times do vary and are dependent on what type of signal is being sent to the JVC, but in general you’re looking at a minimum of around 15 seconds before you get an image up on your screen. If possible, try and set a locked refresh rate otherwise be ready for long blackout periods in your theater when switching sources and frame rates. JVC needs to work on this.

       I want to spend a large chunk of this write up on the resolution and subjective sharpness of the 285ES and how it compares to JVC's eshift technology because I think these points are extremely important to make. After all, on paper, this is one of the biggest differences between these two models. I often see people dumbfounded when reading reports from others that the seemingly obvious benefit of native 4K on a Sony 4K SXRD projector, with native 4K source material, doesn’t actually appear sharper (or only subtly sharper) than an e-shifted image from a normal seated distance. Taken at face value, it seems obvious that more pixels on screen should in fact look sharper and more detailed than less pixels on screen. I agree with this as that should be the case, but there are some caveats with how Sony implements their 4K SXRD projectors that come into play here. It’s also difficult to compare subjective image sharpness and resolution between these models because the way in which they render a 4K image is very different. The JVC relies on proprietary scaling and rendering software combined with optical manipulation of their 1080p images through a process called eshift to put on screen greater-than-1080p resolution. Effectively it can only do 4 million pixels worth of information on screen. The 285ES is native 4K which means it can put up more than 8 million pixels on screen. The 285ES, in a perfect world, should most definitely have more detail in it’s image with 4K source material. With that said, I have to agree with those other reports that say, more often than not, it’s difficult to see more detail with the 285ES. Let me discuss why I think this is and try to explain these caveats...
 
       The first caveat is the lens in the 285ES. Simply put, it cannot focus down on pixels across the entire SXRD panel as well a the JVCs lens can with it’s own DiLA panels. This is still the case even though Sony has taken steps this year to manufacture their lenses closer to specification. It has not reached the level of performance that the Sony 1xxx/5000ES lens has. I don’t think anyone was expecting it to though. The excellent German website, cine4home.de, did a deep dive awhile back into the dozens of 6xx/3xx 4K SXRD projectors they received and reported that only about 20% of lenses in those projectors were issue free. This meant that around 80% of all the lenses they looked at in previous years either had poor focus uniformity, had issues focusing down on individual pixels or a combination of both. Sony seems to be rectifying this issue this year with better quality control to avoid this. But still, I don’t think even a lens built to specification can focus down on pixels as well as the JVCs lens and the JVCs lens has stellar focus uniformity. Though to give Sony a little leeway, the pixels are roughly four times smaller on these 4K SXRD panels, so it may be cost prohibitive to get something like the JVC’s focusing performance at the 285ES’ price point. It looks like you need to step up to the 5000ES to get a lens that good or better when the pixels are this small.
       
       The second caveat is that the 285ES has an issue displaying discreet chroma (color) information on a per pixel basis. From a displaying color perspective I don't think you can call this projector native 4K. This issue seems to stem from a hardware limitation with the device that feeds the SXRD panels information; the “panel drivers”. This information as to how this artifact occurs comes from a high up employee at Sony EU when a 1000ES owner asked about it. This issue was worse on previous generation 4K SXRD projectors including the 1100ES, 600ES, 300ES and 665ES. Through some tweaks in software, the issue has been lessened. It’s now very difficult to see from a seated distance, but if you walk up to your screen, you can still make out the detrimental effects this issue has on the image. Anyone who owns a 4K SXRD projector need only to walk up to their screen to see what I’m talking about. Essentially you lose out on fine detail and subtle changes in color that are in the source. This issue manifests itself as banding and posterization in the image which can turn subtle color information into swaths of one color. In my opinion this artifact wipes away a fine layer of detail that the image could have if it weren't occurring. With that said, the 285ES does provide discrete single pixel information when the pixels only need to be black and white:

https://i.imgur.com/yv3DuLw.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread

       In this sense it is "native 4K" and will map information on a discreet basis as long as the pixels only have to be black and white. Again though, the issue I talk about where 4K SXRD not providing full 4K resolution has to do with when color information is added in to the image. Obviously this will happen when we watch real video content as next to no video content is pure black and white. Even "black and white" movies are not truly black and white in a literal sense. I'll reference this comparison between these two projectors so you can see how the Sony suffers from posterization issues:


       As you can see, 4K SXRD has issues providing subtle color changes in the source properly. This artifact has occurred on all 4K SXRD projectors released thus far and it''s still there on all of the 2017/2018 models. The result is same colored blotches (posterization) and banding. It does not show what's actually in the source properly as far as color is concerned. The JVC by comparison can simply show more subtle color information that's in the source over what the Sony can do. I would like to add that this issue is always there in the image no matter the signal type. It does not matter if the video is HDR, SDR, 4K, 1080p or even 24p or 60p. Again, this artifact is always in the image as it's something inherent to how Sony drives its SXRD panels.

       While difficult to see from a normal seated distance, it goes it show you how much of a fine detail advantage the 285ES could have if it were able to map color appropriately. I would really like Sony to fix this issue. It's one that has plagued 4K SXRD since the 1000ES (their first consumer 4K projector) back in 2012. From what I've read and been told privately it seems these issues are hardware limitations on the 4K panel and panel driver level, so a new 4K SXRD panel and driver is most likely needed. This would be nice to see as Sony has been rocking these mostly unchanged 4K SXRD panels since 2012 when the 1000ES was released. Hopefully we see something new out in the next year or two with a revised .74" 4K SXRD panel.

       Moving on to the he third caveat. All Sony 4K SXRD projectors, including the 285ES, have non-defeatable noise reduction video processing. This issue has been discussed in several professional reviews about previous 4K SXRD projectors. Out of all the caveats, this is by far the easiest to see from a seated distance. When doing an A/B comparison to a JVC or high end DLP projector you can see the Sony’s image is clearly lacking in grain structure when there is a lot of it in the source. Grain is especially important for movies or TV shows that were shot on film. Grain is how film stock get’s it’s “resolution”. The detail is almost always built into the grain structure on the film. The 285ES unfortunately wipes clean a lot of that fine detail due to the noise reduction you can't disable. Some people like a cleaner looking image, but purists looking to achieve a true-to-the-source rendering of the movie or TV show should look elsewhere. So, on top of the color resolution not being rendered as it should, this noise reduction takes away another fine layer on image detail that could produce extra detail to overtake eshift even more.

       The last caveat is one that I don’t see discussed often and is not something that is Sony’s fault. We’re still extremely early on in the life cycle of 4K/UHD source material and the avenues in which we play back 4K/UHD material. Right now UHD Blu-ray is the highest quality consumer video standard out and this will probably remain true for a long time. But right now the vast majority of UHD blu-ray titles out are sourced from a 2K digital intermediate. This means that most of the movie is scaled up to 4K resolution from 2K with often only a handful of elements of the film (or none at all) brought to the UHD bluray transfer to be shown off at native 4K resolution. This often leads to only a small (or none at all) benefit in fine detail. There are some movies that actually look worse than their 1080p blu-ray counterpart. See here for an example:


   The comparison photographs below were taken inches away from the screen. The source frame can be seen here. Please note this image is HDR and is meant to be viewed properly on an HDR10 capable display. I also have not calibrated my RS400, which accounts for the obvious overly-green cast to the image. The Sony looks much better overall for color. Viewing the source frame on a regular monitor will result in a somewhat washed out look. But we’re focusing on fine detail, not color or dynamic range. So for that purpose, this frame is fine to be viewed on an SDR monitor. This frame is from the UHD Bluray of Life, which is a reference UHD Bluray title. You can see the JVC is just ever so slightly less refined, but remember, this was taken from just a few inches away from the screen. At a seated distance, the difference in apparent resolution is not there.


        So to sum this up, I think the reason why we hear so often that eshift can effectively match 4K SXRD in apparent resolution and detail is a culmination of several issues which include a relatively less performing lens creating a slight loss of optical resolution, a slight loss of digital resolution through noise filtering and subtle color information not making its way into the final image on screen (banding and posterization artifacts) and the fact that UHD Blu-ray is in its infancy not showing us what true 4K resolution can look like with most titles out so far. I really do think if all these issues are addressed, 4K SXRD would look obviously better than eshift. I realize all of this seems to be a huge knock against Sony, but I feel these points are important to make because the resolution difference is more than likely going to be the major reason why most people are going to consider this projector over a JVC. I feel these issues do make most of the advantage the 285ES could have in resolution, or essentially any 4K SXRD projector, almost moot. As it stands now, from a normal seated distance, I rarely see a difference in fine detail and sharpness between these two projectors. There are others who contest this finding and that’s fine, but for me and several others including professional reviewers, we aren’t seeing an obvious benefit as things currently stand most of the time. I think I make a fair argument supplemented with photographs and in depth explanations to explain why this is. With that said, does everyone claim to see the same things I and others have? No. Will they find the appeal of native 4K despite these issues as better than eshift? Sure. But again, I, like others, are not seeing much benefit. If Sony addresses these issues I think my opinion on the matter with change dramatically.

       I guess what I’m trying to say is that the native 4K aspect of this projector probably should not be the determining factor as to why you’re buying it. The apparent resolution increase over an eshift JVC unit just isn’t there the vast majority of the time. At a normal seated distance, the times where there was a clear visual increase in resolution when watching video were few and far between. With that said, the reasons in which one might prefer the 285ES over an eshift JVC are for it’s other inherent positive attributes that the JVCs lack. These would be slightly better native motion handling, a cleaner looking image (if you’re okay with some film grain being taken out of the image) , high ANSI contrast giving bright scenes a little more pop, and a slightly more organic and natural looking image. If you value these traits over the JVCs inherent strengths then I think the 285ES is the right choice for you.

       As a buyer you need to figure out which picture quality attributes are most important to you. This will help tremendously when making your purchase choice. The difference in brightness and contrast is large and easy to see on the JVC. Personally, I don’t think the higher performing image quality aspects of the Sony make up for the deficit it has with brightness and contrast. The JVC offers such a staggering value and does so many things well, while also costing $1000 less. This makes it difficult to recommend the 285ES over the RS440 when you take the all the relative shortcomings the 285ES has into consideration.

       In 2017 it’s difficult to make a “wrong” decision when deciding between projectors in the $3000+ market. At the end of the day, we’re really just nitpicking about projectors that all looking stunning. You can’t make a wrong decision, you just need to pick your poison and choose to buy something that performs best in the areas you appreciate most. I’ve tried my best to describe these differences in as much detail as possible to so you can make the most informed decision possible.


Sony VPL-VW285ES

Pros:

Cheapest Native 4K Projector Released To Date
Native 4K
Good Native Motion Handling
An organic and analog looking film-like image
Low Input Lag
Good ANSI Contrast
High Native On/Off Contrast
Great Out of Of the Box Color and Greyscale
Overall Excellent Image Quality

Cons/Gripes:

No Manual Iris
No Lens Memories
Non-Reference 2084 EOTF

Resolution loss due to:
Non-Defeatable Noise Reduction
Some Banding and Posterization

13.5 Gbps HDMI 2.0 Ports
UHD/4K 10bit 60p Banding
Limited Brightness At This Price Point


JVC DLA-RS440

Pros:
Price to Performance Ratio
Excellent Lens Quality
Class leading On/Off Contrast
Class leading Brightness
Low Input Lag Mode
Ultra Quiet
Lens Memories
Custom Gamma and Color Profiles
Auto-Calibration Functionality
CFI with 4K Sources
Class leading 3D Performance

Cons/Gripes:
Somewhat limited e-shift system
Some Flicker in 3D mode
Long HDMI Sync Times
« Last Edit: November 03, 2017, 09:25:21 AM by Dylan Seeger »

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #34 on: October 12, 2017, 03:39:27 PM »
Outstanding review and comparison, Dylan.  Appreciate your effort and feedback between these two units.

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #35 on: October 12, 2017, 03:45:13 PM »
It was pretty easy to write up as both the RS440 and 285ES are evolutionary models. Much of what I've written about is well known but with most of the information scattered all over the internet. I tried my best to put all of that info in one post. Whether some people like it or not, the 285ES doesn't really put up more visible resolution on screen 99% of the time and I wanted to explain why this is as best I could. It's also worth pointing out how much louder the 285ES is to match the RS4xx in brightness. It has to be in high lamp and is considerably louder. The 285ES does have some positives over a JVC RS4xx and I think if people value those qualities it makes more sense for them to get the 285ES.  I just don't think the native 4K aspect is a reason you should choose it over the JVC.

I'll be fixing some typos and adding more images and information as I can over the next week or so before the 285ES goes back. So if anyone has any questions or would like more photos or for me to look at anything else, I'll do my best to provide them.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 03:56:20 PM by Dylan Seeger »

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #36 on: October 12, 2017, 06:06:14 PM »
It was pretty easy to write up as both the RS440 and 285ES are evolutionary models. Much of what I've written about is well known but with most of the information scattered all over the internet. I tried my best to put all of that info in one post. Whether some people like it or not, the 285ES doesn't really put up more visible resolution on screen 99% of the time and I wanted to explain why this is as best I could. It's also worth pointing out how much louder the 285ES is to match the RS4xx in brightness. It has to be in high lamp and is considerably louder. The 285ES does have some positives over a JVC RS4xx and I think if people value those qualities it makes more sense for them to get the 285ES.  I just don't think the native 4K aspect is a reason you should choose it over the JVC.

I'll be fixing some typos and adding more images and information as I can over the next week or so before the 285ES goes back. So if anyone has any questions or would like more photos or for me to look at anything else, I'll do my best to provide them.

Dylan thank you so much for that review.  Really excellent!  I was ready to buy a 385 but now I am thinking about the RS540 or 640 again. 

Javs

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #37 on: October 12, 2017, 06:23:42 PM »
It was pretty easy to write up as both the RS440 and 285ES are evolutionary models. Much of what I've written about is well known but with most of the information scattered all over the internet. I tried my best to put all of that info in one post. Whether some people like it or not, the 285ES doesn't really put up more visible resolution on screen 99% of the time and I wanted to explain why this is as best I could. It's also worth pointing out how much louder the 285ES is to match the RS4xx in brightness. It has to be in high lamp and is considerably louder. The 285ES does have some positives over a JVC RS4xx and I think if people value those qualities it makes more sense for them to get the 285ES.  I just don't think the native 4K aspect is a reason you should choose it over the JVC.

I'll be fixing some typos and adding more images and information as I can over the next week or so before the 285ES goes back. So if anyone has any questions or would like more photos or for me to look at anything else, I'll do my best to provide them.

Great writeup, thanks.

Its just been clarified that the gaming banding pic you showed from the game Hitman, the original poster of that image is saying that issue is in the game and visible on all his displays in the house. So I would probably remove it since its not really a Sony issue.

https://i.imgur.com/VSM5jfL.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread
JVC X9500 (RS620) | OZTS Majestic 120" 16:9 | Marantz AV7702 MkII | Emotiva XPA-7 | Rotel RMB-1555B | iNuke 3000DSP | DIY Javelin Audio TPL-150 L/C/R | DIY Faital MTM TPL-150 Surrounds | DIY Dolby Atmos MKII Modules | 30cf/Net Quad 18" Subs

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #38 on: October 12, 2017, 06:25:59 PM »
Great writeup, thanks.

Its just been clarified that the gaming banding pic you showed from the game Hitman, the original poster of that image is saying that issue is in the game and visible on all his displays in the house. So I would probably remove it since its not really a Sony issue.

https://i.imgur.com/VSM5jfL.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


I will take some photos tonight then. The UB900 has a forced 10bit 4:2:0 mode if I remember correctly.

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #39 on: October 12, 2017, 06:35:44 PM »
Great writeup, thanks.

Its just been clarified that the gaming banding pic you showed from the game Hitman, the original poster of that image is saying that issue is in the game and visible on all his displays in the house. So I would probably remove it since its not really a Sony issue.

https://i.imgur.com/VSM5jfL.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread

We can't make the assumption that it is a game issue.  He only said it looks the same on an old Kuro.  If it looks this way on a 2017 top of the line 18Gbps HDMI capable hit bit display then I think we could say it is the game.

Javs

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #40 on: October 12, 2017, 07:21:20 PM »
The only thing we seem to be missing is a pic of a monkey! Can we see that please, assuming the banding will be gone in that pic.
JVC X9500 (RS620) | OZTS Majestic 120" 16:9 | Marantz AV7702 MkII | Emotiva XPA-7 | Rotel RMB-1555B | iNuke 3000DSP | DIY Javelin Audio TPL-150 L/C/R | DIY Faital MTM TPL-150 Surrounds | DIY Dolby Atmos MKII Modules | 30cf/Net Quad 18" Subs

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #41 on: October 12, 2017, 07:29:33 PM »
I still want to see some comparison of actors faces on the 385 vs. the JVC 540/640.  I use the face of the hotel desk worker in the Lucy 4k UHD to compare my Panasonic UB900 and Oppo 203.  The Panasonic was superior in conversion of HDR to SDR (1080P) and it had a much more graduated application of sharpness that looked better.  The Oppo sharpness adjustment almost seemed like it is broken as a single click up was almost too much and introduced noise (or enhanced it too much).

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #42 on: October 12, 2017, 07:47:18 PM »
The only thing we seem to be missing is a pic of a monkey! Can we see that please, assuming the banding will be gone in that pic.

I can confirm added banding with a 4K60 10bit 4:2:0 signal. Feel free to share these images. I was able to force that type of output with my UB900:

Click to enlarge the images

https://i.imgur.com/TvheXYA.jpg
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


Right at the main menu of the UB900 in this mode shows bad banding. The stock image on this player has some banding already, but the 285ES is adding a lot more than what's in the image already:

https://i.imgur.com/Tv3HNyA.jpg
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


Then the menu of The Fifth Element on UHD BD:

https://i.imgur.com/T6TVUxK.jpg
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


This is an extremely noisy film anyways (lots of grain) so it helps mask a lot of the banding but some of it still pops through. There should not be green and pink bands in the image. They are not there on my JVC:

https://i.imgur.com/X2mOx05.png
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


Edit: Here's the JVC.   I tried to get the same angle, but you get the point:
https://i.imgur.com/cQoiwng.jpg
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


Oh and still tons of posterization in the image. Maybe AMartin will prefer this ass instead of a monkey  ;)

https://i.imgur.com/RfsGmQH.jpg
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread
« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 08:42:00 PM by Dylan Seeger »

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #43 on: October 12, 2017, 07:55:27 PM »
It genuinely surprises me that people don't call AMartin out on his BS more. Not only has he never compared a 4K SXRD projector to a current JVC, he's never even seen a 4K SXRD projector in his own theater on its own. He talks as if he has and knows what the image of one looks like up close and personal. I can't wait for him to get his 385ES and actually walk up to his screen to witness the horror that is posterization and banding. On the Sony's it's always there taking away source information that should be displayed.

Javs

Re: Sony VPL-VW285ES Thread
« Reply #44 on: October 12, 2017, 09:14:36 PM »

Oh and still tons of posterization in the image. Maybe AMartin will prefer this ass instead of a monkey  ;)

https://i.imgur.com/RfsGmQH.jpg
Sony VPL-VW285ES/385ES Thread


haha that image is great.

Are these artefacts still there if you turn off HDR so it send SDR Rec709?
« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 09:16:36 PM by Javs »
JVC X9500 (RS620) | OZTS Majestic 120" 16:9 | Marantz AV7702 MkII | Emotiva XPA-7 | Rotel RMB-1555B | iNuke 3000DSP | DIY Javelin Audio TPL-150 L/C/R | DIY Faital MTM TPL-150 Surrounds | DIY Dolby Atmos MKII Modules | 30cf/Net Quad 18" Subs