While some projector makes stick with a particular imaging technology like DLP or 3LCD, Mitsubishi decided to use Sony’s SXRD liquid crystal on silicon (LCoS) imaging devices for the HC9000D. And instead of using a garden-variety video processor, they instead went with the venerable HQV Reon Vx chip, with is a performance champ especially when it comes to deinterlacing 1080i video sources. Plus, the HC9000D is equipped with Mitsubishi’s excellent optics, which includes motorized zoom, focus as well has horizontal and vertical lens shift.
Consider this projector if: you’re looking for an active 3D projector that’s equipped with an excellent imaging engine along with fully motorized optics.
Look elsewhere if: you’re really fussy about color accuracy, as the color gamut that the projector delivers doesn’t match the established Rec. 709 HD standard (green and yellow are way outside the proper gamut points, which adds a noticeable tinge to flesh tones). Or, be prepared to pay for a full calibration which would include fine-tuning the color gamut accuracy via the projector’s color management system.
• Overall picture quality (HD): 7
• Features: 8
• Connectivity: 9
• User interface: 5
• Value: 6
The optical imaging engine is based on a trio of Sony’s SXRD LCoS devices, said to have better contrast and deep black reproduction than conventional LCD imaging panels. In addition to whatever other video processing chips are used, the HQV Reon Vx chip once again appears in the 9000D (Mitsubishi has used it on some other models). While not the absolute latest in the HQV chip range (the newer HQV Vida chip has a number of performance enhancements not present in the Reon chip), the Reon nonetheless is a proven performer in HD video processing, especially in terms of 1080i-to-1080p upconversion for smooth, jaggie-free progressive HD images. The lamp is a medium-powered 230W device, which provides sufficient brightness for fairly large screen sizes in the more economical (and longer life) lower output lamp mode.
The 9000D features fully motorized optics, including lens shift, for quick and easy initial setup. The main lens sports a 1.8X zoom specification, which is somewhat more than the average 1.6X zoom spec, for greater installation flexibility. For compatibility with external anamorphic lens setups, the 9000D has both anamorphic processing modes (vertical stretch for movable external lens and horizontal squeeze for fixed anamorphic lens setups, where many other projectors only provide the first processing option). There’s an Automatic Iris function that can improve perceived contrast, but it’s best left off as there’s noticeable lag as well as visible brightness jumps.
The optional IR 3D sync blaster is very compact and can be installed a couple of ways. First, the projector’s front panel sports two small holes directly under the lens that mate up with two small clips on the blaster, allowing a quick and easy snap-on fitting with the blaster aimed toward the projection screen. A 1-meter mini-DIN cable connects the blaster to the IR emitter port on the side of the projector but it’s about twice as long as it needs to be. For installations where front-mounting the IR blaster onto the projector isn’t practical, a snap on cover protects the mounting pins on the blaster which can then be placed somewhere else so that it can deliver the 3D sync signals directly to the viewing/seating area. A 15-meter (49.2 feet) cable is included in the blaster kit for that purpose.
Bucking the trend in the home theater projector market where fewer inputs are becoming the norm, the 9000D has a very generous input complement with three HDMI inputs as well as a component video input, an S-video input and a composite video input. Those are supplemented by an RGB computer video input that can handle 1920x1080 full HD sources. The 9000D has two 12V trigger outputs for motorized screen and external anamorphic lens control. There’s a mini-DIN connector to hook up the optional 3D infrared sync blaster, but it’s a 5-pin connector, and not a 4-pin configuration that matches the conventional S-Video spec. That might be a problem if the longer length blaster cable isn’t sufficient for a particular installation scenario, as 4-pin mini-DIN S-Video extension cables and inline couplers won’t work.
On Screen Display
The OSD won’t win any design awards, but sub-menu choices seem to be logically grouped. The text is rather tiny which might make adjustments a chore if the user is far from the screen, but the adjustment slider bars are relatively clear and straightforward to use. The input indicator pop-up that appears when a different input is selected features similarly tiny text, and really should be larger.