Sony Bravia VPL-VW85 SXRD Projector Review - Sony Bravia VPL-VW85 Review

This £10 note action also introduces the bit of the review where I look at the VW85’s motion-related processing. For one of the reasons the detail on the £10 notes looked so clear is that I was experimenting, when I first noticed it, with the projector’s High Motion Enhancement mode – a mode that makes even 24p Blu-ray playback look silky smooth (while generating startlingly few side effects).

If like many movie fans, though, you don’t like the fluidity introduced by the highest Motion Enhancement setting, there are two options open to you. First, you can turn Motion Enhancement to its less dramatic Low setting, or you can experiment with the VW85’s Film Projection settings. For I found that the flickering/pulsing effect this introduces serves to make the fluidity of the Motion Enhancement system look more natural without losing motion sharpness, leaving you with a picture that looks kind of cinematic but also judderless and clear.

Having said all that, I have to say that personally, despite trying to live with it for many hours, I never really got used to the Film Projection modes – not even the ‘gentlest’ setting. The flicker was just that bit too distracting and didn’t feel quite organic enough to really recreate the celluloid experience. But this could well just be a matter of personal taste.

In any event, I urge anyone who buys a VW85 to at least experiment with its dual motion processing tools. And don’t forget that even if you decide you don’t like them at all, the VW85’s pictures are still absolutely excellent even with all the motion processing turned off.

As final reasons to celebrate what really has been a mighty fine showing by the VW85, it runs very quietly for such a potent projector, and suffers seemingly no technology-related noise (like DLP’s rainbow effect or LCD’s ‘screen door’ effect’).


As well as succeeding where its predecessor did not in justifying its price hike over Sony’s latest entry-level SXRD model, the VW85 sets a really high new standard for the £5,000 sector of the projector market. Will JVC’s new D-ILA models manage to be even better? Well, sadly I just don’t know right now. But man, it’s going to be fun finding out…

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