JVC X30 1080p Three-Chip D-ILA 3D Projector


Design and Setup of the JVC X30 Projector

The overall design of the X30 remains very similar to the prior year models. Compared to the older Panasonic AE-900U that I had around, the X30 is much larger in size but it still fit in my rack. The main visible change on the exterior is the lack of a motorized lens cover, one reason they were able to reduce the price. All of the controls and inputs for the X30 are located on the rear of the unit, where you will find dual HDMI inputs, a component video input, Ethernet and RS232 jacks for control, and a trigger input. There is also a connector for the optional 3D emitter, remote control, and then buttons to enable full control of the unit without the remote. The rest of the unit is very clean, with large feet that make it easy to level the unit. The included remote is backlit and has a very nice layout, with one button access to inputs, display modes, and features.

One new feature that is of great interest to me on the X30 is the addition of lens memory modes. More people have started shifting to cinemascope screens for their home theater to fully replicate the movie theater experience. Typically using one of these has required you to either manually zoom your projector or an expensive anamorphic lens system. While some projectors have had zoom memory in the past, it expanded onto projectors from JVC and Sony this year as well. The X30 has three memory positions to save zoom, lens shift, and focus for different ratios, and each can have their own name. This feature worked really well in practice and made it easy to switch between different ratios while filling as much of the screen as possible.

When it came time to setup the projector, I have to give JVC applause for the quality of their manual and their OSD. The manual covered everything in depth with clear explanations and plenty of detail. The OSD was also designed with home theater users and calibrators in mind. The default position is out of the way of meters when making adjustments, and the individual adjustment controls are at the very bottom of the screen. These controls also stay on the screen until you choose to hide them, making setup and calibration much easier than on displays with the settings in the middle of the screen, and that go back to the previous screen too quickly that quickly hide them of use the center of the screen. Other vendors would be wise to copy JVC here.