JVC X30 and X70 - Performance First Impressions


The X70 is particularly interesting as it gives us our first glimpse of the e-Shift technology in action. And we have to say that its effect is surprisingly impressive – once you accept the fact that it isn’t producing a ‘true’ 4k2k picture in the normal sense of the term.

What e-Shift appears to do is make pictures look more solid and densely detailed – an effect that might sound subtle on paper, but actually makes images look surprisingly more ‘cinematic’; as if they’re coming from an analogue source like celluloid rather than a digital, pixel-based medium.
Another way of putting this would be to say that the e-Shift picture feels like D-ILA managing to reproduce the sort of analogue-like image ‘finish’ you see with good quality DLP projectors. All of which counts as a good thing, in our book.

The X70 also reminds us in no uncertain terms of the black level prowess of JVC’s D-ILA projectors, reproducing dark scenes like the assault on the tower block in Hong Kong in Dark Knight with a purity of black tone you just don’t see anywhere else at anything like the X70’s price level.

The latest refinements to JVC’s optical engine have allowed it to reduce light ‘spillage’, which leads to the X70s pictures looking noticeably brighter, more rich in shadow detail and more dynamic than those of the X7.

JVC X30 white

Colours also look more punchy yet still more natural than they did on the X7 too, and detail levels look outstanding. We wouldn’t say that there seems to be more detail on the X70, though; as we’ve hopefully established now, the e-Shift ‘4k2k’ technology as explored in the limited content of a preview scenario seems to work more to create a smooth analogue image finish rather than to add tangible extra image detail.

There appeared to be improvements with the X70’s 3D playback, too, as pictures look slightly brighter and less prone to crosstalk – even without bothering with the crosstalk canceller. The X70’s new 2D to 3D converter also looked startlingly and unexpectedly effective during our preview.

Switching our attentions to the X30, although it only boasts the same claimed brightness and contrast figures as last year’s X3 model, it appeared to us as if its pictures were slightly more dynamic than those of its predecessor. Which is, of course, pretty fine news given how excellent the X3 was for its money.

Furthermore, while the X30 might not have the new feature or performance advances to capture our imagination as much as the X70 and X90 models, it does actually have one new trick up its sleeve that might very well make it the Christmas season’s hottest projector property: its price.

For JVC has confirmed to us that the X30 will cost just £3,000 – a remarkably low price that becomes even more attractive when you learn that it includes both JVC’s external 3D transmitter and two pairs of active shutter glasses.

Needless to say, we’ll be bringing you reviews of all three new projectors when final production models start to come through in November.