Mitsubishi HC8000D-BL 3D DLP Projector


Setup of the Mitsubishi HC8000D-BL 3D DLP Projector

I decided to mount the HC8000D-BL upside-down from the ceiling, which is a pretty typical installation method. Once locked down, I selected Mirror Invert from the menu to right the picture. An Oppo BDP-93 was connected via HDMI. I also installed the 3D emitter next to the projector so its signals would bounce off the screen.

After breaking in the bulb for 50 hours, I turned to the extensive menu system. The first section, Image, contains everything you need for a detailed and precise calibration. There is a two-point white balance, multi-point gamma control, and full color management system. Out of the box, the HC8000D-BL had decent grayscale tracking and fantastic gamma so calibration was pretty easy. The CMS was unable to fix all of the color errors I encountered but the end result was quite good.

All your settings can be saved to any of the four picture modes, or the three additional memories. There are also ISF Day and Night modes which can be accessed with a passcode. These can be locked once calibrated. I chose the Cinema mode as the best starting point and saved all my work to that mode. You can do a separate calibration for 3D and save your settings to that, or any other mode. One quirk I encountered; the 3D picture mode is not automatically selected when the projector is switched to 3D operation, you have to do it manually.

In exploring the other features of the HC8000D-BL, I was particularly drawn to its multi-iris system. A variable iris is installed near the DLP chip and serves a dynamic contrast function. There are three settings that each takes the black level progressively lower. The third option definitely crushes detail. Then there are two fixed irises that reduce light and a third that can be set to one of two openings. Closing down to the High Contrast setting maintained good light output and produced excellent native contrast to the point where the variable iris was unnecessary. Thanks to this unique system, the HC8000D-BL boasts some of the best contrast I've seen from any DLP display.

Mitsubishi also offers a frame interpolation feature which they call Frame Rate Conversion. In practice, it's one of the best I've seen. There are two modes, True Film and True Video. True Video definitely produces the soap-opera effect. True Film however is much more subtle. Even on the fourth of five presets, I could barely tell it was on. It does improve motion resolution noticeably without flattening the picture like most other displays do. Overall I found it very impressive. Additionally, there is a 120Hz mode for 24p signals. The default is 96Hz which looked fine to me. If you notice flicker, bump it up to 120Hz. Also, for those few viewers who experience DLP rainbows, the color wheel can be set to run at 6x rather than 4x. Since I don't see the rainbows, there was no effect on the image to my eye.

The rest of the menus contain the convenience settings for the HC8000D-BL. Anamorphic lenses are supported for both 2D and 3D and there is a dedicated menu for computer signals. You can adjust the image position, sync and tracking, overscan, and the colorspace input. These settings all apply to the analog inputs.

With calibration complete for both 2D and 3D, it's time to see what some actual content looks like!