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The Myth of the Digital Projector
© 2009 KenRockwell.com. All rights reserved.

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December 2009   Nikon Reviews  Canon Reviews   Leica Reviews   Pentax  

October 2010 See the Canon REALiS WUX4000 projector, which has great resolution.

 

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I personally buy from Adorama, Amazon, Ritz, B&H, Calumet and J&R. I can't vouch for ads below.

 

Digital makes me laugh.

As I keep telling everyone, digital camera resolution doesn't matter.

Among the many reasons it doesn't matter is, that as of 2009, digital projectors are still usually less than one Megapixel, regardless of how bright or how big the images.

Go ahead. Browse the listings at Adorama or B&H, and all the projectors are still usually 1,024 x 768 resolution.

That's less than 0.8 megapixels.

Many other current projectors ar 800 x 600 pixels, or less than half a megapixel!

Camera and projector companies lie to us to get us to buy more stuff from them. They list camera resolution in impressive megapixels to exaggerate meaningless differences in resolution, and projector makers do the opposite and list pixel dimensions to hide the dirty fact that there is almost no way even to get one megapixel out of a digital projector.

If you want to spend big bucks, several thousand dollars can get you a Canon projector with less than 1.5 MP resolution, but you also can spend $5,500 for a brighter Canon projector with less than 0.8 megapixels.

If you want two megapixels, you'll have to spend five figures. Try the $10,000 Canon WUX-10 Mk II or the $14,000 LEICA PRADOVIT-D-1200.

Got a quarter-million dollars? A state-of-the-art 2K theatrical digital cinema projector still has only two megapixels.

When you project film in a slide projector,so long as you get it in focus, you've got your full 25 megapixels — or more — of your original film on-screen. Walk up closer and you see more details instead of the pixel matrix of the projector.

But wait! Direct-from-film projection also offers a far better dynamic range with much deeper blacks, and a far broader color range, able to show bright and vivid reds much deeper than the wimpy orange-reds that are the best digital can do.

Bit depth? Don't even try to get a straight answer out of projector makers, because LCD and DLP projector engines usually only deliver about 5 bits per color channel. The interface is only 8bits per color channel.

Direct-from-film projection has no such limitations. You can see the full 12-bits or more that film offers. Actually, film has no bits at all, so the bit precision is actually unlimited.

I don't know about you, but I'm sticking with film, which is both superior and far less expensive.

 

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Thanks for reading!

Ken

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