Finding any explanation at all for how InFocus has managed to make the X10 so cheap is a monumental effort. In fact, I couldn’t find one. The bottom line is simply that if the X10 were £500 more, it would still look like a bargain.
This is not meant to imply, of course, that the projector is perfect. Thankfully for the rest of the projection market there are two or three areas where you can get improvements if you spend more.
Potentially the biggest problem is the X10’s susceptibility to DLP’s rainbow effect. This refers to stripes of pure red, green and blue that can flit about for a split second in your peripheral vision, or over very bright parts of the image, as a result of the machinations of DLP’s colour wheel mechanism.
I was definitely slightly aware of this happening on a few occasions while watching ”National Treasure 2”, especially during the dark scenes toward the film’s end, where bright points of light stand out against predominantly dark backgrounds.
You can reduce the rainbow effect’s impact on the X10 by closing the iris to limit the image’s brightness, and personally I consider the issue a small price to pay for all the remarkable things the X10 gets right. But I know some people are more susceptible to the rainbow effect than others, so it’s definitely something you need to be aware of. Maybe you should try and get a demo of the unit before you buy, just to see if the rainbow effect is particularly bothersome for you.
A far less troubling issue is some extremely low-level grey pixel noise over very dark parts of the picture, though this is seldom if ever distracting. In fact, you might not even see it at all if you don’t go looking for it. Which of course you will now that I’ve mentioned it here. Sorry…
A final point would be that motion doesn’t look quite as fluid or crisp as we’d ideally like. But again, this is seldom a distracting issue, and I’m almost embarrassed I mentioned it at all given that we’re talking about a Full HD DLP projector costing under £900.
If I had a pound for every time I’d used the phrase ‘you only get what you pay for’ in the course of my reviews for this website, I’d be a wealthy man by now. But thankfully very occasionally you stumble across a perspective-shifting product that’s the exception to the rule. And the X10 is just such a product – with knobs on. In fact, quite where the rest of the home projection industry goes from here is anyone’s guess.