- Phenomenal 2D performer
- Good 3D performer
- Plenty of calibration tools
- Sounds noisy when optimised for 3D
- Needs to be 'run in'
- Low-level crosstalk with 3D
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Before we get stuck into JVC’s DLA-X7 projector, we really feel compelled to say that we were perhaps a bit harsh on the 3D capabilities of the brand’s DLA-X3 entry-level model when we reviewed it a couple of weeks back. We’ve actually continued to use the X3 a lot since the review went live, and the longer we’ve spent with it, the less its 3D crosstalk issues have bothered us.
This is strange, as experience usually suggests that you notice crosstalk on a 3D product more over time rather than less. But we guess it proves that the crosstalk on the X3 is ultimately low-grade enough for us to have slowly started to tune it out.
We were having these feelings even before Sony’s VW90ES 3D projector turned up. But when that considerably more expensive rival ended up suffering markedly more with crosstalk than the X3, we could no longer deny that an 8 for the X3’s 3D performance would probably have been fairer than the 7 we originally gave it.
We’ve reflected these thoughts in the Comments under the X3 review, but it’s worth reiterating them here. Partly to give peace of mind to people who might have been put off the X3 by its 3D mark, and partly to add pressure to the X7 we’re looking at today!
After all, with the X3’s performance ultimately impressing us pretty much across the board, and the X7 costing nearly twice as much at £6,550, the X7 is clearly going to have to go some to make the extra outlay seem worthwhile.
It’s first attempt to win us over comes with its 70,000:1 contrast ratio claim - a near 40 per cent jump on the X3‘s 50,000. And the figures take on even more significance when you consider that as with all JVC’s recent home cinema D-ILA projectors, the X3 and X7 both quote native contrast ratio figures, rather than figures conjured up via a dynamic iris.
Why does this matter? Because it means the figures are genuine reflections of the projector’s ability to place light and dark objects simultaneously within the same frame, rather than being ‘artificially’ created by automatically reducing brightness levels when showing predominantly dark content, as happens with the dynamic contrast ratio systems found on many home cinema projectors.
As well as making dark scenes punchier and more detailed, not having to use a dynamic contrast arrangement should also make the X7’s pictures more stable and consistent.
Home cinema enthusiasts, meanwhile, will be very happy to see the X7’s high-gloss black body emblazoned with a white ‘THX’ logo, revealing that its pictures have been officially endorsed by the renowned American independent quality assurance organisation. The projector carries a THX picture preset, too.
Endorsement is also present and correct from the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF), which considers the projector flexible enough with its set up tools to allow an ISF-trained engineer to come round and professionally optimise the X7‘s picture settings to suit your particular environment.
The sort of tools we’re talking about extend to three user memories for gamma control into which you can store your preferred values for the output level of the white, green, red and blue elements of gamma performance using a 12-point system.