The change has been brewing for a while now. There’s the perceived value projectors offer, of placement flexibility alongside the ability to make for much larger displays, than TVs can for the same price. The former may still be subjective depending on the specifics of your home layouts and subjective preferences, the latter is an argument that TVs are not winning. Quite emphatically.
Just one example to illustrate the matter. For ₹3,79,990 or so of your money, you can get a LG Nano95 65-inch TV. But would you, really? We want you to ask this question as you count the cash (or tally the limits on different credit cards). With a ₹3,95,000 price tag, the alternate is the ViewSonic X1000-4K projector. This raises the stakes with projection sizes up to 100-inch.
Also Read: ViewSonic CPB701 4K projector: Is the old-world charm really a charm anymore?
Since it is an Ultra Short Throw (UST) type projector, that canvas size on the wall (or a projection screen, if you really invest) can be achieved by placing this just 15-inches away from the wall. Any closer, if distances don’t permit, and it takes no more space than a 55-inch TV would, even for an 85-inch projection size. Also, UST doesn’t force you to find acres of space for the projector to sit (often that ended up inconveniently in the middle of the room), aimed at a clean wall.
Any table that you would otherwise keep the TV on, is fine. And it doesn’t need to be any further away from the wall either. That said, you cannot get too close to the wall either. the ViewSonic X1000-4K projector’s power cable gets in the way. Or scrapes the wall. The power port placement is less than ideal – it should have been on the side.
The ViewSonic X1000-4K projector also sorts the audio system requirements, at least for the most part, with the powerful soundbar that is integrated into a design that looks rather clever. Not something that hasn’t been tried before (rivals including Optoma have), but the sharper attention to detail makes sense. For instance, the dials to adjust the height of the metal legs, to get the perfect frame.
It is perplexing that ViewSonic has had to bundle a USB Wi-Fi dongle to connect to your home internet – that just feels unnecessary. How difficult would it have been to get built-in Wi-Fi in place?
Power on the ViewSonic X1000-4K projector and the home screen feels more like a file manager than something you’d expect from a modern-day smart entertainment device. You can get apps on to the projector using the third-party app store, but it’ll just be better if you plug in an Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K, a Fire TV Cube or an Apple TV 4K to the projector. The apps will be better. The experience will be less clumsy.
Things really transform when you have either of these devices, connected, powered on and ready to stream movies, TV shows or Live sports. In a complete transformation to the home screen’s tryst with being out of sync with the times, the picture and sound settings for each source are extremely detailed. Beyond brightness and contrast, there are finer controls too for colour temperature. It isn’t at all difficult to get the perfect picture, as you want it.
We did notice that the wall colour presets are a bit more pronounced than they should have been. If you have, for instance, a cream-ish wall colour, you’d have to choose the yellow preset. That really puts, and the Instagram crowd would understand this very well, a pronounced filter on the visuals.
The solid foundations are the reason why the streaming experience, particularly for Ultra HD content with HDR, is so involving. The brightness is rated at 2400 lumens, the LED projection system has a native 4K resolution (that is 3840 x 2160) and one of the three HDMI ports ticks off the 2.0 standard.
We had the chance to use the projector in detail for Live sports, since the FIFA World Cup 2022 slowly inched towards the business end, and there were multiple bilateral cricket series being played globally. Amazon Prime Video’s streaming of India’s tour of New Zealand (when the rain didn’t play spoilsport) looked really good, and when JioCinema got their act together, football in 4K looked gorgeous.
This also gave us a chance to assess how the ViewSonic X1000-4K projector handles fast moving visuals, and we noticed no issues with ghosting, blurring, or trailing. That is something even TVs often struggle with at times – a cricket ball racing across the grass often betrays image trails.
The Harman Kardon soundbar which the projector integrates has two tweeters (each is 1-inch in size) and a larger full range driver (that’s 2.5-inch in size). We did not feel the need to either use the HomePod as the default speaker for our Apple TV or plug in a separate soundbar. It has been tuned for detailing and that reaps dividends at higher volumes and when there are a lot of elements to reproduce during movies.
It isn’t often that a soundbar (or a speaker that isn’t focusing on the finer details) reproduces the clatter of a bullet shell as it bounces on the floor. This projector does.
It all comes down to sensible choice, as it is with most things. If you have the budget for a premium Ultra HD TV, you could do well to consider a projector. They aren’t as hard to maintain now, work well in active (and nicely lit) living rooms too and the large screen sizes you get for movies and sports is worth every penny paid. The ViewSonic X1000-4K projector is one of the better TV alternatives you’ll consider, for now. Projectors aren’t always exciting. This one is.