Sleek and swoopy, the Epson Power-Lite Home Cinema 1080 UB features a prominent lens mounted towards the right side with a row of exhaust slats on the left front panel that direct warmed air off to the side. The optics feature manual adjustments for focus and zoom, as well as horizontal and vertical offset. Although the owner’s manual feature list doesn’t call out the type of scalar chip used, the packaging carries a Pixelworks logo, a popular choice that’s found in some other projector brands. As with most other projector models, the PowerLite Home Cinema 1080 UB features both low and high lamp modes with Auto Iris to help extend visual dynamic range during darker scenes.
Note: For correct contrast and brightness adjustment, you’ll need test discs such as Avia (on DVD) and Digital Video Essentials HD Basics on Blu-ray. Other test patterns on the discs will let you further refine color quality, among other things.
(We Own The Night)
|Opening black and white crime scene photo montage is crisp and dramatic.||Captures the film’s gentle marigold patina, giving a warm tone to most scenes. Police station scenes properly show sharp blue institutional lighting tinge.||Excels at deep blacks and dark blues, many examples of cop uniforms throughout the movie.||Boardwalk scene (chapter 9) at night shows fine detail in weathered wood planks.||None noted.|
|Shows fine detail of the gents’ top hats in chapter 5 “Can Can” scene.||Wonderfully colorful costumes not oversaturated, with reds devoid of noise.||Top hats and tuxedos abound in the dance numbers, easy to see details in the clothing.||Clouds sequence in chapter 9 “Your Song” shows both actors’ dark costumes with good detail.||None noted.|
The Epson strikes a fine balance between solid performance and a useful feature set. There are extensive picture tweaking capabilities, and the adventurous can spend many hours finetuning the various adjustments to see if they contribute to (or detract from) the picture quality. The optics provide a wide range of adjustability, but the excessively coarse granularity of the adjustments is sure to cause some mild frustration during setup. I would have preferred that the gear ratios of the lens and shift adjustments be much lower and also be tightened up—adjusting one parameter sometimes causes an unwanted shift in another. In the low lamp mode, the Epson is whisper quiet and the remote control is a model of good design.