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Budget setup < 27K INR, PJ - Egate P531 (1280x800)

driverace

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Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
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8
Location
Pune
Hello All,

To begin with, a big Thank you to @elangoas :clapping:

--
What I wanted
--

I wanted-
1. Big screen experience in my living room.
2. Was actually looking at a "stretched" budget of 60K INR for a full HD 60" screen
3. Since I mostly play stuff on my laptop and HDMI it to my TV anyway, I was fine testing the PJ/Hometheatre setup as a replacement of TV.

Before @elangoas suggested the PJ setup, I really didn't know about LED projectors and that the life and performance has improved so much, that we can actually plan to have a Full HD, 3D full wall screen at around 60-90K INR.
What impressed me the most is the pure-budget-WXGA, LED projector availability at the 20K price point!

Reliability of which, is still a grey area, but, i have the 2 year warranty to keep that covered.
If I am full into this, I wouldn't mind going ahead with the FHD, 3D setups too!


--
The purchase
--
After a lot of reading and checking reviews online. I ordered and received the Egate P531 Projector unit.
with the recommended extended warranty of +1 year.
I bought it directly from the company, and that helped me buy it with the warranty at 20100 INR (incl. shipping).

--
Delivery
--

I received the product in 4 days.
Packed well.
The lens "has some play" but, that doesn't cause any trouble, as such.
No other rattles or loose bits.
The unit has a cheapish plasticky gloss to it, but, since it is going to be out of sight (soon), that shouldn't be a problem.
They have sent an extra fuse and tissue wipes booklet for lens cleaning.
Box also has VGA cable, a unbranded short HDMI cable, and basic RCA cables.
Warranty card, extended warranty certificate & invoice.

--
First impression
--

It boots pretty quick, into it's own Android 4.4 version, by default.
I connected it to home wifi, and that was done pretty quick.
Some "update ready" popped up immediately.
I ran it, but didn't realise what exactly it updated. :indifferent14:
The popped up screen menu were all in chinese language only.
I will check it again tonight.

I ran couple of quick tests to see if the resolution and connectivity is okay, and I can say it is fine.
The Android menu projection was very clear and sharp, when the focus was adjusted manually.

I did not get the time to play with settings yet, or to project it on a clear wall, with throw distance of more than 6 feet.
I could manage a short session with 5-6 feet throw distance and around 4.5 feet of projected image width.

--
Phone casting /sharing
--
Air play with iphone works pretty well, seamless, actually.
Photos are easy to run - like a slide show.
Videos lag.
I (obviously) need to tune the projector for display accuracy.
The images had too much contrast and lot of loss of detail while "casting".


--
HDMI connectivity
--

Quick connect with HDMI (through laptop) worked fine.
Picture / content played was sharp and bright.
I really need some inputs on a "basic and quick" image tuning of the PJ.
I will fiddle with the PJ more and report with updates.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Points to note-

  1. The remote with PJ is okay. Definitely not durable, if used like our regular TV remotes. It would need careful handling.
  2. The displayed screen is really a notch above my expectation, so far - at least in terms of sharpness and brightness.
    *above perception is in a room which is almost "theatre-like-dark" for testing. also, to be fair, my expectations were/are only of a 'clear' projection. I know I paid for a budget projector, and I expect a "budget" level performance :p
  3. It's my first PJ setup. So, I need to consider many aspects of the setup before I order my screen. (especially the mounting distances).
  4. I am going to run a few screen calibration videos off youtube to begin with.

---

Cheers,

Ace.
 
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elangoas

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Nov 4, 2009
Messages
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Location
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Am glad some inputs were of help to you :thumbsup:..Congrats on your purchase.. Once you mount it, share some images..

Also share the picture tweaking videos, i would also try them :)
 

driverace

Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
Points
8
Location
Pune
Am glad some inputs were of help to you :thumbsup:..Congrats on your purchase.. Once you mount it, share some images..

Also share the picture tweaking videos, i would also try them :)
Most definitely, your inputs did help me save some money :D haha.
But, now I am hooked to this "projection" setup.
And, looks like I am going to spend wayyy more on getting the cinematic experience! :eek:hyeah:

--
For calibration-

I am going to download THX and Disney calibration discs soon.
For now, I am using youtube resources for screen calibration.
Just basic calibration videos like this


Meanwhile, can you please share your PJ settings?
So, i can have a good starting point? :)

Any more pointers for me wrt tweaking the projector settings?

Thanks,

Ace.
 

elangoas

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Messages
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Location
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Most definitely, your inputs did help me save some money :D haha.
But, now I am hooked to this "projection" setup.
And, looks like I am going to spend wayyy more on getting the cinematic experience! :eek:hyeah:
Great.. you also got extended warranty.. Am yet to speak to the company rep on this..

For calibration-

I am going to download THX and Disney calibration discs soon.
For now, I am using youtube resources for screen calibration.
Just basic calibration videos like this
I will try this link..

Meanwhile, can you please share your PJ settings?
So, i can have a good starting point? :)

Any more pointers for me wrt tweaking the projector settings?

Thanks, Ace.
Sure.. Will update when i get back home..
 

elangoas

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Messages
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Location
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Meanwhile, can you please share your PJ settings?
So, i can have a good starting point? :)

Any more pointers for me wrt tweaking the projector settings?

Thanks,

Ace.
Here are my picture settings.. As mentioned before, i use picture mode "user" with tweaked values in Projector and also use "ISF Day" preset on my AVR..
 

driverace

Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
Points
8
Location
Pune
Here are some photos of the first calibration + testing setup (projected on a white wall).

Note:

Ignore the obvious grainy-ness of the pictures, that is due to the darkness.
Photos are taken with iphone.
The brightness, contrast & sharpness - give fairly balanced image (slightly on the warmer side).

I am in process of tweaking the PJ output.
Part tweaking in the PC (display profiles).
Part tweaking in the PJ settings.

I understand, that I will need a lot of back and forth to get to the right display.
So far, I have decent detail, normal-ish skin tones and slightly lowered saturation/hue/color-pop.
I still get jagged edges in some videos, at times, the sharpness seems too off.

The edges are considerably out-of-focus, but they seem to be okay after some focus-resets.

EDIT Note
The images look slightly on the "too bright side" with highlights blown out.
The image compression messed that up.

Actual projection images are not like that. They are 'sufficiently' bright.
I will try taking future photos with a DSLR, and downscale better.

---



The PJ parcel


P531 (with lens cover)


Distance from wall.
Projector lens to screen = 370 cm / 12 ' 1.6"
Projected image size (wxh) = 239 x 144 cm / 7' 10.1" x 4' 8.7"

Throw ratio = 370/239 = 1.548

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

--
Tweaking Day 1
--


Settings 1 of 2


Settings 2 of 2


Test Video 1


People-faces 1


people-faces 2


People-faces 3


People 1


People 2


People 3


People 4


Nature 1


Nature 2


Nature 3


Nature 4


Nature 5


Text & Color 1


Text & Color 2


------------------------------------------------------------
 
Last edited:

elangoas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2009
Messages
6,935
Points
113
Location
Madrasapattinam
Here are some photos of the first calibration + testing setup (projected on a white wall).

Note:

Ignore the obvious grainy-ness of the pictures, that is due to the darkness.
Photos are taken with iphone.
The brightness, contrast & sharpness - give fairly balanced image (slightly on the warmer side).

I am in process of tweaking the PJ output.
Part tweaking in the PC (display profiles).
Part tweaking in the PJ settings.

I understand, that I will need a lot of back and forth to get to the right display.
So far, I have decent detail, normal-ish skin tones and slightly lowered saturation/hue/color-pop.
I still get jagged edges in some videos, at times, the sharpness seems too off.

The edges are considerably out-of-focus, but they seem to be okay after some focus-resets.

EDIT Note
The images look slightly on the "too bright side" with highlights blown out.
The image compression messed that up.

Actual projection images are not like that. They are 'sufficiently' bright.
I will try taking future photos with a DSLR, and downscale better.
Great Job.. Pictures look great.. I will also try these settings and see for any improvement for my room..

I had reduced brightness in the PJ, as the picture mode in the AVR brightens the dark scenes..
 

driverace

Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
Points
8
Location
Pune
Great Job.. Pictures look great.. I will also try these settings and see for any improvement for my room..

I had reduced brightness in the PJ, as the picture mode in the AVR brightens the dark scenes..
Hi.

I did some calibration / tuning using the Nvidia control panel on my laptop.
I need to do some more tweaking.

Meanwhile, did you tweak your settings?
Please post when you do & get better results.
Also share, when you see any "limits". As in - going beyond 60 on contrast doesn't really do much good. :)

Do you also observe significant out-of-focus (for text) at the screen edges?

Thanks,

Ace.
 

danielnaveen2003

Active Member
Joined
Dec 25, 2010
Messages
216
Points
43
Location
Bangalore
Hi.

Do you also observe significant out-of-focus (for text) at the screen edges?

Ace.
Since you have asked this question in both threads I am replying to it there as it seems to be your main projector set up thread.

Before I answer i just noticed in a an image above that you have set the RGB values to 100. Is it still that way? As this is going to cause major colour clipping.

Regarding edge sharpness, things to check before blaming the projector would be
1. Is your wall perfectly flat, in my experience they never are, however this isn't a major factor as your projector is not a short throw.
2. Is your projector square with the wall or are you performing more than ideal key stoning (ideal would be just 10 pixels at the max on a single corner)?

If your wall is flat and the projector is square then its going to be down to the projector lens (being a 1280x800 projector has nothing to do with the optics). The only solution you have at this point is to make a slightly curved screen to make up for the edge focus degradation. Should be fairly easy if you use a pvc foam board.
 

gainil

New Member
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May 26, 2014
Messages
26
Points
3
Location
Pune
Do you also observe significant out-of-focus (for text) at the screen edges?

Ace.

As said by danielnaveen2003, the issue has to be either of the two points.

Mine too had this issue, after focusing, if right side corner text was sharp, left bottom corner went unsharp and vice versa. Found that height adjustment screw is very clumsy, it moves one thread up or down where I want it to be. Using keystone button resolved the issue.

Thanks
 
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elangoas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 4, 2009
Messages
6,935
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Location
Madrasapattinam
Hi.

I did some calibration / tuning using the Nvidia control panel on my laptop.
I need to do some more tweaking.

Meanwhile, did you tweak your settings?
Please post when you do & get better results.
Also share, when you see any "limits". As in - going beyond 60 on contrast doesn't really do much good. :)

Do you also observe significant out-of-focus (for text) at the screen edges?

Thanks,

Ace.
Am yet to do any of the calibration tests.. Will do and update here..

Here are some pics of parts of the screen..

This is top left hand corner..


Top right hand corner


Cente of the screen


Bottom left hand corner


Bottom right hand corner


Note : Since i used keystone tilt, the picture is not sharp on top left & right hand corners.. If the PJ is firing straight without any tilt, the image is sharp in corners..
 
Last edited:

shibashis

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Kolkata
Focusing is one of the shortcomings of these Chinese models, even if the picture quality is often more than acceptable and quite great for the price, positioning of the projector has to be absolutely at the right spot otherwise it messes up the focus.
I placed an order for the Egate but Amazon lost my order, I am glad that they did, I went ahead and bought the Epson, it was a good decision I believe.
Unfortunately the best and the most reliable model is no longer available in India, the Excelvan 720P model.
 

elangoas

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Messages
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Location
Madrasapattinam
Focusing is one of the shortcomings of these Chinese models, even if the picture quality is often more than acceptable and quite great for the price, positioning of the projector has to be absolutely at the right spot otherwise it messes up the focus.
Right.. There are few niggles with these chinese PJ, but they are really good for the price..

I placed an order for the Egate but Amazon lost my order, I am glad that they did, I went ahead and bought the Epson, it was a good decision I believe.
Strange amazon.in missed it..

Unfortunately the best and the most reliable model is no longer available in India, the Excelvan 720P model.
I got an Excelvan 720p model from US thru my friend, 6 months back.. Right out of the box it had issue.. A black spot starts to develop in the center of the screen and then the whole screen gets black, like ink leak..

So any brand is subject to reliability issues..

Excelvan 720p & Egate P513/P531 are almost identical in specs..
 

danielnaveen2003

Active Member
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Messages
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Location
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Focusing is one of the shortcomings of these Chinese models
I think it's more to do with the price of these projectors, I say this as the xgimi h1 which is a 100% Chinese is one of the best entry level 1080p projectors out there. With motorized focusing and the works. And it's one of the few projector I've used that is spot on the dci p3 colour standard as well, while many big brands claim the same but are usually far off target.
 

driverace

Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
Points
8
Location
Pune
Thank you for the inputs above, folks.

Here are a few more screen-shot-captures (on iphone).
Ignore the pixelation, that's due to overall darkness.

The clarity has improved a lot.
I have done some more tweaking & changes in the "firing" position of the projector & position - with respect to - the projected image.

here are imgur links-

Very Dark scene


Bright scene



Close up of animated character



Another scene



Part Bright and Part dark


Blown out sky (in movie) but, okay details left on the horizon


Big Blue earth



Skin tone with closeup


_______________________________________________________


The projector lens distance from screen, makes a lot of difference on the brightness!

From current 12 feet Lens-to-screen distance, If I reduce it to 6 feet 3 inches, the difference in screen brightness & overall clarity is a LOT!
(diagonal screen size reduces from 110" to 55")

Just to give a easy understanding, i had to reduce the brightness setting on projector from 85~87 to 55~58.

_______________________________________________________

Additionally, for this particular projector -only a certain keystone setting (within possible range of adjustment) usually delivers a way clearer picture all over the projected image range (i.e. decent focus in centre as well as the corners).
I would say, the difference would be about 20-30%! in the clarity & focus sharpness - between the ideal & other-not-so-ideal keystone settings.

I would have to figure out the best setting and arrive at the mounting height + screen mounting height, to get a clear picture!

Lot more benchmarking to do.

_______________________________________________________




Over the last week + weekend, we watched the grand movies -
Avatar, Gravity, Bahubali 1, Interstellar - on the BIG screen at home! :p

It has been a lot of fun.
No eye strain.
Good clarity & really nice experience, especially considering the price we have paid for the equipment.

Hope to turn this setup into a good weekend movie zone one.

Lot of tweaking still to happen.


________________________________________________________

Others,

Please feel free to share your inputs.

Thanks.

Ace.
 

driverace

Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
Points
8
Location
Pune
Plenty of setup tweaks have been done.

Majorly-
1. PJ is setup on the ceiling now.
2. Screen fixed (8x6' screen - the cheapest available with pull-down option, without auto lock for about 3.5K INR)
3. Some tweaking with the display profiles to get the sharpest image/videos.

-----------

The screen setup:
Screen is mounted about 1' 8" from the ceiling.





Ignore the waves here, they can be minimized/eliminated by adjusting the weights on the ends.


The projector is mounted about 3.5' from the ceiling.

The text clarity / focus uniformity check test:


Right-bottom:


Right-top:



Left-top:


Left-bottom:



--------------------------

Overall text sharpness:


 
Last edited:

driverace

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Messages
66
Points
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Location
Pune
Movie & Other image screenshots:

Abstract colors & darkness


Movie scene - with me :lol:


Another HD wallpaper


Bond still


GoT :)


----------------------

This pretty much meets my expectations from this Projector setup.

Cheers,

Ace.
 

elangoas

Well-Known Member
Joined
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Messages
6,935
Points
113
Location
Madrasapattinam
Plenty of setup tweaks have been done.

Majorly-
1. PJ is setup on the ceiling now.
2. Screen fixed (8x6' screen - the cheapest available with pull-down option, without auto lock for about 3.5K INR)
3. Some tweaking with the display profiles to get the sharpest image/videos.

-----------

The screen setup:
Screen is mounted about 1' 8" from the ceiling.

Ignore the waves here, they can be minimized/eliminated by adjusting the weights on the ends.

The projector is mounted about 3.5' from the ceiling.

The text clarity / focus uniformity check test:

--------------------------

Overall text sharpness:
I think the text towards the corners of the screen are sharp enough to read from a 10 feet distance from the screen..

Off Topic - Why have you mounted 4 speakers over the screen ?

Movie & Other image screenshots:

Abstract colors & darkness

Movie scene - with me :lol:

Another HD wallpaper

Bond still

GoT :)
----------------------

This pretty much meets my expectations from this Projector setup.

Cheers,

Ace.
Pretty good.. Am guessing your diagonal size is 106 inches ?

Am considering re-mounting my PJ avoiding the tilt & Keystone to get sharp images like your's..
 

driverace

Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
Points
8
Location
Pune
Focusing is one of the shortcomings of these Chinese models, even if the picture quality is often more than acceptable and quite great for the price, positioning of the projector has to be absolutely at the right spot otherwise it messes up the focus.
I placed an order for the Egate but Amazon lost my order, I am glad that they did, I went ahead and bought the Epson, it was a good decision I believe.
Unfortunately the best and the most reliable model is no longer available in India, the Excelvan 720P model.
Shibashis,

Have a look at the sharpness/focus screen-photos posted above.
I think, that's satisfactory - at this price point :)

Like you said, it is a matter of finding the "best" setup of the PJ to get the best possible picture.
Picture quality is acceptable - provided we have the flexibility of PJ positioning/alignment & screen positioning.

Cheers,

Ace.
 
Last edited:

driverace

Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2014
Messages
66
Points
8
Location
Pune
I think the text towards the corners of the screen are sharp enough to read from a 10 feet distance from the screen..

Off Topic - Why have you mounted 4 speakers over the screen ?
Yes, the text is clear enough to read from 10 feet distance.

The speakers system is 4.1 and not a surround sound. (Sony SA-D10)
So, we have kept them all in the front.
I definitely agree, this is just a basic setup, but works well - for now :D

Any suggestions?


Pretty good.. Am guessing your diagonal size is 106 inches ?

Am considering re-mounting my PJ avoiding the tilt & Keystone to get sharp images like your's..
Yes, the diagonal screen size is about 110 inches :D:cool:

Sure, I would also suggest you to try and re-position the PJ to get the best possible projection clarity.


-----------

I am looking forward to mod the screen - to make it brighter & clearer.
Perhaps a grey paint to begin with.


Cheers,

Ace.
 
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