Projectors

JVC X55 Three-Chip D-ILA Projector

ARTICLE INDEX

The JVC X55 Projector On The Bench

With our receivers and display bench, the JVC handles everything perfectly. All color spaces come across well, with no loss of luma or chroma detail. Blacker than Black and Whiter than White content come across if you adjust the HDMI Input settings appropriately. Deinterlacing also passed with flying colors as well. With e-shift enabled the JVC does much better with test content than it did last year, showing that the improved algorithms they implemented for it seem to pay off. The one test that didn't perform as well with e-shift enabled is the Ship video on the first Spears & Munsil test disc. The ropes on the ship had a bit more aliasing, but also a bit more edge enhancement added that could be seen with some white halos around them. Turning off e-shift removed this issue, and I didn't see it on any films, but since this is actual video content, you could run into it sometimes in action.

Calibrated from 11' away, I managed to get 409 lumens out of the JVC X55 in low lamp mode. As I found high lamp mode to be too loud in an open room, this is what you might expect to see. Running in 3D mode, which uses high lamp, I got 919 lumens on the screen, which comes up short of the 1200 lumens spec. With these you can use a screen calculator, like the one at http://www.eliteprojectorcalculator.com/, to determine the light output on your own screen.

Before calibration, I used a color temperature of 6500K for white, and the Cinema mode for color, along with a custom gamma with a value of 2.3. Taken together, these result in some pretty good out of the box numbers. Gamma is almost perfect, and the grayscale is good with the dE staying below three, but there is certainly a blue-green shift that you can see in the charts. Since the dE is still below 3 this won't be immediately apparent, and likely will only really bother you with a black and white film. The contrast ratio here was 8805:1, and these grayscale numbers are quite good.

Colors are good but not excellent, with green showing the largest error of any primary or secondary. This is due to a hue shift where pure green has a bit of a yellow shift to it. Luminance values are very good, and that's the most important thing to see here.

On the Color Checker test, we see a very good result. Only the final teal/cyan bar is above a dE of 3.0, indicating great performance everywhere in the gamut, not just on colors that are typically measured. The average dE2000 of 1.458 is truly low for something that isn't calibrated at all, and shows the care that JVC puts into the X55. Things get even better when we look at the saturation data, where we see some issues at 100% saturations, though still usually below 3, but the lower saturation values are even better. I think for a great number of people, you could be happy with the JVC X55 out of the box, though your room and screen will influence the results you get of course.

After calibration, the grayscale on the X55 manages to improve quite a bit. We can remove that blue-green tint that we saw and get our average grayscale dE down below 1.0, with only a couple very dark samples even hitting a dE2000 of 2.0. Our gamma suffers a tiny bit, but not that much. Doing this does reduce the light output a good bit, as green is almost three times as bright as blue and red combined, so in the interest of a bright image you might want to accept a slightly higher error at 90-100%, say a dE2000 of 2.0, in order to get 1-2fL more off of your screen. At least as the bulb ages and you have to calibrate again, you can know that's an option.

The contrast ratio measured here was a very nice 14,321:1. I also begin to run into the limits of measurements here as dark screens are getting very tough to do accurately, and even the smallest error on a black reading can affect the contrast ratio by a couple thousand.

Color improves a bit, with some small adjustments in the CMS leading to all the dE2000 values falling below 3.0. Green is more accurate, with less of a yellow cast to it, and the luminances improve some but they were already quite good.

Our Color Checker data is even better now, with a dE2000 average of only 1.15, and only one bar even hitting 2.0 with nothing coming close to 3.0. Saturations also improve a slight bit on the whole, and I really find nothing to complain about here with the quality of the JVC after calibration. Out of the box it is excellent, and calibration improves it by a small but measurable amount. It is a fantastic performer on the bench.

Looking at the uniformity of the brightness across the lens, the JVC X55 does very well. There is a slight drop-off on the left side, but it's not large and I wasn't able to notice it in use. Overall this is the most uniform projector I have tested thus far, but I'm still early in using this measurement.