Epson EH-TW5800 review

The latest projector from Epson is more than competent, but does it represent good value for money? Tested at £3500.00

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

The Epson is a fine proposition, but the class leaders on either side of this price point represent better value


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    Detailed image

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    handles movement with HD content especially well

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    easy to set up


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    Struggles with subtleties

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    image lacks the punch and vibrancy of the very best

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Epson might be better known for its printers and scanners, but don't forget that the company does a bustling trade in projectors, too. The EH-TW5800 is positioned at the top of Epson's current range.

The ‘TW5800 is a Full HD, LCD design that features 12-bit video processing and the very latest version of Epson's D7 C2 Fine Panel LCD technology.

There's nothing too taxing about setting up this projector.

Although luxuries such as motorised zoom are absent, the ‘TW5800 can be quickly manipulated into position using the lense shift dial on top of the machine, and the focus and zoom dials positioned around the Fujinon lens.

The Epson is also very quiet, and doesn't suffer from the hair dryer soundtrack of some models.

On-screen menus look simple enough, but there's a chance you could get bogged down by some of the in-depth options on offer.

The ‘TW5800 is ISF-certified, so a qualified engineer could be called out – for a fee, of course – to set it up if you wish.

Vibrant motion tracking
One of the Epson's big plus points is its ability to handle motion. Panning shots from Transformers and The Dark Knight remain smooth and stable.

Edge definition is crisp, without a trace of colour bleeding. There's also no sign of the ‘chicken-wire' effect that poor projectors can suffer from.

The ‘TW5800 uses Epson's DeepBlack picture technology to enhance contrast, and there's no question that it can produce solid, deep blacks. However, the very best at this price provide excellent black depth while maintaining dark detail – this Epson doesn't quite have the same insight and subtlety.

The only real problem for the ‘TW5800 is that it's positioned between excellent budget models from InFocus and high-end machines from JVC.

The Epson doesn't outperform cheaper models by enough of a margin, and isn't close enough to the performance of more expensive models. Very good, but not a world-beater.

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