To really appreciate what makes the HT3000E so very special, though - and worth its money - you need to check it out with a picture that blends extreme darkness with extreme brightness within the same frame. For it's only then that you can fully appreciate the truly extraordinary range the projector delivers between the brightest whites and the deepest blacks - all thanks to the combination of extreme brightness with a huge contrast range that you really can't get from any ‘sensibly priced' projector.
The HT3000E's BrilliantColor system plays its part in the exceptional image quality too. Colours have a dynamism, expressiveness and tonal range that we genuinely haven't seen before on a single-chip DLP projector of any price, helping portray HD films and TV shows with a vibrancy and immaculate subtlety that will have your eyes riveted to the screen. Even if the actual content of what you're watching happens to be total dross. The BBC's Robin Hood, anyone?
Another area in which this projector excels is fine detailing. Its compact, full HD DLP chipset ensures that it proudly displays every single pixel of image data, even from a particularly pristine HD disc such as Casino Royale on Blu-ray. In fact, so crisp, clean and sharp are its HD pictures that you start to treat any sloppy HD disc transfer, which fails to show the projector off at its best advantage, as almost a criminal act.
Obviously the clarity we're talking about wouldn't be there if the HT3000E suffered in any serious way from any grain, dot crawl, colour moiré or other video noise, so that's another success SIM2 can chalk up.
Yet more good news finds the HT3000E running superbly quietly for such a high-brightness projector. We had it sat within three feet of our viewing position (hardly ideal, and something you'll probably be able to avoid in your own living room), yet we seldom found ourselves distracted by the whirring of its fans, even during very quiet parts of movies.
The HT3000E only has one little flaw, in our opinion, and that's the rainbow effect. With single-chip DLP technology you occasionally see pure stripes of colour in your peripheral vision, or over particularly starkly contrasted parts of the image. And that is true of the HT3000E. But while it is there and so needs to be mentioned on a projector as expensive as this, we should add that it occurs far less commonly or aggressively than with practically any other DLP projector we can think of. And in any case many people appear to be lucky enough to be somehow immune to the problem.
The HT3000E costs an arm and a leg, there's no denying that. But if you happen to have an arm and a leg to spare, you really could do worse than trade them in for what's comfortably the finest projector we've seen to date, and the very epitome of a high-end dream machine.