The results are in from the 2022 Laser TV Showdown hosted August 4th by ProjectorCentral and ProjectorScreen.com that faced-off 14 laser UST projectors, with newcomer Formovie capturing the top honor in the Triple Laser category and projection stalwart BenQ coming in first in the Single Laser category.
Right behind the Formovie Theater ($2,999) in the final ranking for the Triple Laser category, by less than 1/10th of a point, was the recently reviewed LG HU915QB ($6,499), the company's just-released new flagship UST. The Hisense PX1-PRO ($3,499) came in third, with the Samsung LSP9T ($6,499) running closely behind it in the overall aggregate scoring.
How We Tested & Scored
As previously reported, the Showdown featured two separate rounds of competition, with eight Single Laser models in Round 1 and six Triple Laser models in Round 2. Single laser models typically have a blue laser combined with a phosphor wheel or chip and usually a color wheel to generate the three primary colors of red, green, and blue. Triple laser projectors usually (but not always) have dedicated red, green, and blue lasers that have the potential to provide a wider color gamut.
The evaluation studio set up at ProjectorScreen.com's New Jersey headquarters allowed for simultaneous viewing of a maximum of eight contenders on matching 100-inch ambient light-rejecting (ALR) screens designed specifically for USTs, plus a high-end JVC DLA-NZ8 reference projector in a dimmed, adjoining space projecting on a reference quality, matte-white screen to allow judges to better assess which projectors looked "most right." Multiple sponsors as described in this article stepped up with the expensive test instruments, signal distribution infrastructure, source/reference components, and screens to make the Showdown happen. ProjectorCentral and ProjectorScreen.com are extremely grateful to AV Pro Edge, Jeti, Kaleidescape, Murideo, and Spectra Projection for their equipment contributions and assistance.
The event was self-funded by ProjectorCentral and ProjectorScreen.com, and ProjectorCentral handled the product selection and judging as an independent editorial entity. The projectors were calibrated for the SDR Dark Reference and HDR Dark Reference modes by ProjectorScreen.com staff calibrator Dave Harper with input from ProjectorCentral editor Rob Sabin, who calibrated the bright-room SDR Day Mode for each projector by eye to optimize color accuracy, brightness and contrast in the harsh, challenging overhead light of the test studio. Sabin also moderated the event.
Six expert judges were recruited from the calibration and A/V editorial communities to judge the projectors, including the following respected calibrators and reviewers:
- Chris Eberle, professional ISF-trained display calibrator, display reviewer for Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity (hometheaterhifi.com), display reviewer for Tom's Hardware (tomshardware.com)
- Al Griffin, Senior Editor, Home Entertainment US and display reviewer for Tech Radar (TechRadar.com), former editor-in-chief/display reviewer for Sound & Vision (soundandvision.com), ISF-trained calibrator
- Mark Henninger, Managing Editor for Home Theater Review (hometheaterreview.com), former editor-in-chief for AVSForum.com, contributing technical editor/UST projector reviewer for ProjectorCentral.com, THX-trained calibrator
- Chris Majestic, YouTube projector reviewer and influencer at MajesTechs (youtube.com/c/Majestechs)
- Ralph Potts, veteran Blu-ray Reviewer and A/V writer at AVSForum.com
- Sammie Prescott, Jr., professional ISF-trained display calibrator at AV Chroma Cal LLC, contributing technical editor/reviewer at ProjectorCentral.com
Judges were given ballot sheets to rate each projector for specific attributes of picture quality, such as Color Accuracy, Contrast, Black Level/Shadow Detail, and Detail/Sharpness. For tabulation, the highest grade within each attribute was assigned a score of 10 and all other scores are relative, making the final result a pure ranking with the spread between each projector retained. Additionally, some picture quality attributes were given different weights to reflect their importance to overall image quality with motion handling, 4,000-Nit Tone-Mapping, and Color Gamut given less weight than those related to color accuracy, contrast and black level.
The tight final overall scores seen in some parts of the rankings reflect how similar the projectors were as a group; none of the contenders could be said to have blown away the competition overall, and the scoring reflects multiple ties within a few of the individual picture attributes. However, examining the most important attributes within each picture mode provides a good sense of the strengths and weaknesses of each projector. Note that price was not a factor in any of the judging or rankings, though current pricing for each projector as of the day of the event are included in the results for context along with a listing of some key features which may be important for some buyers.
The final results for the 2022 Laser TV Showdown are shown below. For specs on the individual products, current pricing, and access to our reviews click the projector model below.
Triple LaserAWOL Vision LTV-3500
Single LaserBenQ V7050i
Optoma CinemaX P2
2022 Laser TV Showdown - Triple Laser Rankings
2022 Laser TV Showdown - Single Laser Rankings
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