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Sony VPL-VW1100ES 4K Projector Review

by on March 3, 2015
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Overview

I think it should be said that Projector Reviews stated that if you wanted a better projector, then you should buy an IMAX theater. I’m sure that you can see its beautiful design with a lens that looks like a giant Cyclops eye here, and you will pay for something like this.

We’ll get to the price of Sony’s “most immersive, awe-inspiring home theater with SXRD 4K movie theater projector technology”. Yes, that is a quote from Sony itself, as well as “nothing else comes close”.

At this point, what is there to say about a 4K projector that has such good features and yet costs so much? This would be like talking about a sports car that only the richest of the rich could afford, but one would have to question if one is truly getting what one is paying for.

The Good

The VPL-VW1100ES can deliver the 4096 x 2160 resolution that you have been craving, using three 4K SXRD panels without any artificial pixel enhancement. So you can use the VPL-VW1100ES to view Blu-ray, DVD, and even 3D content in 4K.

One of the features is the Triluminos Display Technology giving it a broader color range, reproducing more textures and tones than others. There is also a dynamic contrast with Iris3 technology and 4K SXRD panels for 1,000,000:1. The VPL-VW1100ES also comes with a wider range of color space, with a greater range than Adobe RGB or specified by the professional DCI standard. The electronic panel alignment puts the red and blue elements for the best of clarity, with adjustments that can be made by 0.1 pixels. The end result is a more satisfying and realistic picture which is also thanks to another technology known as Motionflow, which displays twice as many images and transitions per seconds than Full HD.

It also comes with Reality Creation, to provide detail and sharpness enhancement and upscaling. It is an algorithm that Sony uses in order to take an image, process it, and then have the result become sharper and more detailed.

You’re also looking at 2000 Lumens of Brightness, a very high performance lamp to make this almost like going to the movies. In fact, Projector Reviews states that if you had a screen with a 200 inch diagonal, you could use the VPL-VM1100ES to watch movies with. By the way, you can view your content at 60 frames per second.

Sony VPL 1

Okay, this is one feature that the VPL-VM1100ES has that I wish other projects had. It comes with a 16GB Xperia Tablet Z for control. Having the movie library or Video Unlimited 4K store allows you to select exactly what you want to watch. The tablet has and application to play or stop and use the touchscreen in order to drag where you want the video to start. You can even exit the application while you’re watching in case you want to use the tablet for tablet things. Just so I can add on a disclaimer here, I didn’t see this tablet on every VPL-VM1100ES site that I found, so it is possible that the Xperia Tablet Z only comes with some versions of the VPL-VM1100ES.

Another piece of hardware that is optional is a Sony 4K Ultra HD Media Player that comes with 10 bonus feature films and video shorts preloaded. This server comes with its own remote control, as well as Wi-Fi built right in.

Check the Price of Sony VPLVW1100ES 4K Projector on Amazon:

The bad

We mentioned earlier that the VPLVW1100ES is capable of 3D, but the VW1100ES is using an IR type 3D emitter and glasses rather than the RF which is placing this technology. If 3D doesn’t matter to you, then this will not be an issue. You could also just purchase an external 3D RF emitter and plug into the 3D input on the projector.

It should also be noted that it doesn’t have traditional CMS enabling the calibration of the individual colors. However, the same source that gave me this information, Projector Reviews, has also informed me that Sony “pulls it off”.

The control panel is very minimalist and somewhat tiny. The blue backlit remote control has also been reviewed as not giving enough light for the user to read the controls.

Final Thoughts

Yes, I am going to give the Sony VPL-VW1100ES a good review, because it can do 4K in a way that makes it seem like real 4K. I am contrasting a lot of other projectors, displays, and other products who say they have achieved 4K goodness but have only developed a process to make it seem like 4K resolution. The VPL-VW1100ES can do it, and if I had my own private screening room, then I would be rich, and would have no trouble paying top dollar for this projector, which is exactly what it costs.

Specs

• Weight: 44.0 pounds
• Projection Size: 60” to 200” inches
• Contrast Ratio: 1,000,000:1 Dynamic Contrast
• 3D: Yes
• Brightness: 2000 Lumens
• Video Compatibility: 480/60i, 576/50i, 480/60p, 576/50p,720/60p, 720/50p, 1080/60i, 1080/50i The following items are available for HDMI input only: 1080/60p, 1080/50p, 1080/24p,3840 x 2160/24p, 3840 x 2160/25p, 3840 x 2160/30p, 3840 x 2160/60p, 4096 x 2160/24p, 4096 x 2160/60p
• Lamp Life: Unknown
• Resolution: HD 4K (4096 x 2160)
• Connectivity Ports: Component (Y/Pb/Pr) Inputs: 2 side (RCA x 3), 15 Pin HD, D-sub 15-pin, RJ45, RJ45 Remote Network Connection, IR Input, RS-232, and 2 12V Trigger outputs.
• Power Zoom/Focus: Yes
• Zoom lens ratio: 2.10:1
• 3D Glasses: Unknown

Highlights

Much of the Highlights of this product were already discussed in the section of “The Good”. I believe there are a few that I have left out:

There is a Quiet Fan as well with 23 decibels to make certain it is quiet so you hear the content, not the cooling fan!

As for the remote control for the VPL-VW1100ES, and it has a range of 35 feet.

Also included in this is a 2.06 x motorized zoom lens and wide lens shift range that is 80 percent vertical and 31 percent horizontal. Speaking of the zoom lens, it has Picture Position Memory can match it to the movie’s aspect ratio using Cinemascope and 16:9 for feature viewing. Another terrific feature is what is called “lens memory” which allows the user to define up to five different combinations of settings. A normal use of this would be to find the right size for filling a screen with 16:9 content, and then a second setting would be for widescreen Cinemascope shape, which is 2.35:1.

Sony VPL 3

Visual Specs

Well, we have already talked about how it is capable of HD 4K (4096 x 2160 resolution). We can also mention the contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1, and the brightness claim of 2000. We have also mentioned how Motionflow and other various processes within the VPL-VW1100ES projector keep the projected images and video clear and distinct.

Connectivity

For inputs and outputs, you really have a lot of choices here. It has a pair of genuine HDMI 2.0 (not 1.4) inputs, and they have the HDCP 2.2 copy protection needed for Blu-ray UHD. Then there is a DB15 connector for an analog computer input, and it is followed by three color coded RCA Jacks for a component video input. Then there is an RJ45 jack for an ouboard 3D emitter, or it candouble as a 12V source. Oh, yes, there is another RJ45 jack for plugging into a Local Area Network. It also comes with a DB9 serial port, as well as an IR in. The last that I will discuss is two 12 volt triggers for screen control and controlling an anamorphic lens sled.

It should be noted that the FMP-X10 also has inputs. It has two HDMI, and, as you might have guessed, one has to be plugged into the VPL-VW1100ES projector.

Sony VPL 4

Pricing

Okay, now here’s the damage. It will cost you $27,999.99 on the Sony store, and the price also matches that which I found on Amazon. I almost don’t think I even need to do the Not so Great part after saying that, but I’ll give it another reiteration.

Check the Price of Sony VPLVW1100ES 4K Projector on Amazon:


Not so Great

There would be no way of summarizing the Sony VPL-VW1100ES without mentioning the price. However, there are other nitpicking details like the buttons and the not properly backlit remote that I also should at least mention. But dang, that price. Most of us would take out a payment plan for a car of that price. Maybe get a 4k tv instead.

Positives

It gives 4K with SXRD
Broader color range
1,000,000:1 Contrast ratio
Motionflow technology
Reality Creation for more detail
2000 Lumens brightness
Sony 4K Ultra media Player included (may not be on some models, as is the Xperia Z tablet)
Quiet Fan
Zoom lens

Negatives

The price!
The back lit remote
IR type 3D emitter when it should be RF

Editor Rating
 
Features
A-

 
Quality
A-

 
User Friendliness
A-

 
Connectivity
A+

 
Price
B-

Total Score
B+

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User Rating
 
Features
B+

 
Quality
B-

 
User Friendliness
C+

 
Connectivity
B

 
Price
C

User Score
20 ratings
B-

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Bottom Line
 

I think that there will always be a place for high-end products such as the Sony VPL-VW1100ES 4K home projector. The issue will always be the price for the typical consumer, but there may come a time when the cheapest projector will have all these same features. Of course, that will only be because something else has eclipsed 4K as the best.

Check the Price of Sony VPLVW1100ES 4K Projector on Amazon:

 
5 comments
 
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  • Tom
    December 1, 2015 at 5:08 am

    It seems bizarre that you’d praise MotionFlow with its virtual frames. Surely you want the intended picture (generally 24p or 30p)?

    Reply

    • Stephen
      Stephen
      December 1, 2015 at 6:04 pm

      In many situations you’d be absolutely correct Tom, motionFlow isn’t for all types of content and there’s a lot to be said in favor of the cinematic experience which comes with 24p and such. However, for some content, the blur removing effect is very useful and the side effects of this aren’t so important. MotionFlow is a useful spec if used selectively.

      Reply

  • Jasterthemaster
    March 24, 2016 at 4:50 am

    it says 200 foot screen in “the good” section … but 200″ inches in the “specs” section

    Reply

  • Mark Weiss
    September 21, 2016 at 3:38 pm

    I wish 8K projectors would hurry up and obsolete the 4k projectors so that I can buy one on eBay for under $5,000.

    Reply

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