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Mitsubishi HC3800 Review

Mitsubishi HC3800 Full Definition LCD Home Theatre Projector

Mitsubishi have recently taken the plunge into the budget end of the Full HD home theatre market and with the HC3800 they have not skimped on picture quality. The unit gives you a decent contrast with 4000:1 giving you deep blacks and shading. Utilizing a 6 segment colour wheel they have decreased the problems with the rainbow effect of this DLP projector. The brightness though is a little on the low side. With most home theatre projectors now ranging between 1600 to 2000 lumens Mitsubishi has stuck with a 1300 lumen light output which will still give you a good picture but we would recommend an image size below 100inches and a well darkened room.

The connections are fairly standard with one HDMI, Component, S-Video, Composite and VGA allowing for connection to pretty much everything in an average home theatre. An extra HDMI would have been nice as this is fast becoming the more common connector in many theatre components.

The Mitsubishi HC3800 offers a massive lamp life of 5000 hours on economic mode. We found that this setting though is only applicable for a fairly dark room. The unit has a 1300 lumen brightness on the brighter settings but in economic mode the picture dims quite a bit which is still fine up to about 100inches diagonal in image size with a dark home theatre room.

Lens shift - none. No it's not that big a deal most people like the idea of lens shift but end up putting the projector dead center anyway. But for the few that like to put their unit to the left or right of the screen this isn't the unit for you.

The image itself was quite good 1080p resolution we tested it on a bluray player as well as some of the higher definition games in an xbox 360 and we were impressed by the image detail and the very good colour processing. It offers an incredibly sharp image with good colour, outstanding detail and fairly good contrast. We even tried it with a standard DVD (which runs at 576p) and even at the lower resolution the upscalling made a good image.

The HC3800 is a good all round projector but it gets marked down on what the competition provides. With most 1080p projectors coming down in price recently the HC3800 is a little pricey and for an entry level 1080p projector with a similar performance but a better price the BenQ W1000 would be a brighter option and at the HC3800's price point the Epson TW3500 offers lens shift a higher brightness and contrast.

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