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Runco LS-1 - More Performance and Verdict

John Archer

By John Archer

Reviewed:

Awards

  • Recommended by TR
Runco LS-1

Summary

Our Score:

9

We’d worried that maybe the LS-1 would be lacking in brightness. But in fact it drove our 85in screen so potently that we could easily imagine it driving a 100in or even slightly bigger screen with no trouble whatsoever.

The LS-1 isn’t as bright, it must be said, as the in-some-ways-similar Sim2 Crystal 35 projector. But then crucially it scores a massive hit over the (more expensive) Sim2 model by not suffering anywhere near as much with single-chip DLP technology’s ‘rainbow effect’, where you can see stripes of pure red, green and blue in your peripheral vision or over very bright objects.

In fact, the LS-1’s resistance to rainbowing is quite outstanding considering how bright it is, with even notoriously tricky scenes like the opening black and white section of Casino Royale emerging almost totally rainbow-free.

Runco LS-1

The LS-1’s motion handling is another area where is excels. For it manages to deliver action scenes and fast camera pans with everything from 24p Blu-rays to 50Hz Sky feeds with startling clarity, no more judder than feels natural, and best of all not the slightest trace of the dotting noise that remains a common single-chip DLP artefact.

If you really pushed us to find anything wrong with the LS-1’s performance, we might say that dark scenes lose just a little shadow detail versus more expensive projectors once you’ve calibrated the contrast and brightness to get the best colour/black level balance. But we’re really grasping at straws here, for the bottom line is that the LS-1 delivers much of the precision, richness, and beautiful naturalism of a high-end projector for a price that barely qualifies as mid-range.

Verdict

Runco’s most concerted bid yet to enter the ‘mass’ part of the projector market is a stunning success, retaining far more of the brand’s legendary DLP quality than we’d have thought possible.

We guess it would be remiss of us if we didn’t make the point before signing off that the LS-1 doesn’t support 3D playback. But while we would certainly love to see what Runco could do with 3D, if it had been added to the LS-1 then its price would undoubtedly have been much higher. And we personally feel much more excited about being able to get this much Runco quality for so little money than we are about being able to watch the occasional bit of 3D.

Overall Score

9

Scores In Detail

  • Design 8
  • Features 8
  • Image Quality 9
  • Value 9

betelgeus

November 24, 2011, 8:08 pm

is that price confirmed.it seems to have a high street price of $4000 in us,so maybe as little as $3500 on amazon,do they expect uk to pay double the amount?

Barry at Pulse

February 17, 2012, 6:14 pm

As I am sure you are aware, buying a US made product in the US is always cheaper than buying the same product elsewhere in the world, in just the same way that buying a UK made product in the US is more expensive than the same product in the UK.

Look at the Chevrolet Camaro that retails at $33k in the US but £35k in the UK for the same spec car.

Unfortunately, it is not quite as simple as comparing the US $ price to the UK £ price for any given product. You also need to take into account any local taxes that vary from state to state on products. You then need to look at shipping from the US with sufficient insurance cover should the product be damaged or lost in transit. Then you need to pay import duty once the product arrives in the UK and remember that your warranty is supplied via the dealer that you purchased it from so if you did need any support you would need to arrange to send the unit back to them etc.

The LS-1 purchased in the UK is supported by a local dealer network, with a 2 year UK warranty and is inclusive of VAT currently charged at 20%. Your Runco dealer will also have full access to the ISF menu's for detail calibration and will be able to advise you on recommended screen size, material, gain etc for your room.

The LS-1 delivers superb performance and value for money, I am sure you would be delighted with one.

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