Optoma HD23 review

Affordable, but suffers from the strength of the competition Tested at £800

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Our Verdict

Bound to find favour at this price, but not quite the last word in sub-£1000 performance

For

  • Competitive price
  • compact and sturdy
  • colourful, bright images with impressive detail levels

Against

  • Can be seen working hard in the most taxing scenes
  • spills light through its vents

There’s nothing in the Optoma HD23’s appearance or specification to suggest it’s comfortably the most affordable projector in its class.

In terms of build quality, maximum image size or socket set it’s giving nothing away, and aside from forgoing the Epson EH-TW5900’s 3D ability (which will cost you extra in terms of glasses, don’t forget) it presents itself as something of a bargain.

Set-up is straightforward, thanks to crisp, logical and friendly on-screen menus and a dazzingly backlit remote.

Given its throw ratio the Optoma is likely to be positioned in front of your seated position (or at least it will unless you’ve a humungous screen to fill), and given the amount of light that leaks from its vents it won’t thank you for putting it on a particularly reflective surface.

You can overcome this trait (and the fact that it generates the most fan noise of any of these three machines) by fixing it to the ceiling, of course.

Bright, vivid images

Properly set up and warmed up, and with a Blu-ray copy of Machine Gun Preacher piped in via HDMI, the HD23 serves up bright, vivid images.

You can finesse the menus as much as you like, the Optoma’s colour temperature will never dip below ‘slightly warm’, but beyond that it’s a vibrant watch. It doesn’t deliver the strongest contrasts, with black tones lacking outright depth – although they do at least contain plenty of detail.

Whites are bright and clean, though, and they stay that way even if the rest of the screen is in (relative) darkness.

Overall detail levels are high, the HD23 doing particularly good work with skin-textures (even though the overall warmth of images does tend to make everyone look in rude health).

Confident with motion
Movement is handled confidently in most circumstances, although complex patterns in motion can cause a little hesitancy, and it’s a similar story with picture noise: the majority of scenes find the Optoma delivering nice clean images, but when the going gets properly testing some blocking and mosquito noise can intrude.

Most of the time, then, the HD23 is a watchable, quite engrossing projector with a real facility for details and white tones.

Against rivals such as the Epson EH-TW5900 and BenQ W1200, though, its shortcomings (which are far from fatal) are thrown into rather sharp relief. It’s really the strength of the competition, rather than any inherent problems with the Optoma itself, that sees it a star short of top marks.

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Specifications

View All

Interfaces-Ports

HDMIYes
USBYes

Image

Native Aspect Ratio16:9
Native Resolution1920 x 1080
Graphic ModeFull HD
Contrast Ratio5,000:1
Standard Mode Brightness2500 lm

Lamp

Lamp Power230 W
Normal Mode Lamp Life2500 Hour
Number of Lamps1
Economy Mode Lamp Life4000 Hour

Projection Lens

Maximum Diagonal Image Size7.62 m (300")
Optical Zoom1.2x

General Information

Product NameOptoma HD23
Product ModelHD23
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.optoma.co.uk
Brand NameOptoma
Product TypeDLP Projector
ManufacturerOptoma Technology
Manufacturer Part NumberHD23

Power Description

Operating Power Consumption220 W

Video

Video Signal StandardHDTV
Output Scan Format1080p

Physical Characteristics

Weight Approximate2.90 kg
Width324 mm
Depth234 mm
Height97 mm
Dimensions97 mm (H): 324 mm (W): 234 mm (D)

Miscellaneous

Package Contents
  • HD23 DLP Projector
  • Lens Cover
  • AC Power Cord
  • Back-lit IR Remote Control
  • Batteries
  • +12V Plug
  • M3 Screws
  • Quick Start Card
  • CD User Manual
  • Warranty Card

Technical Information

Projection MethodFront, Ceiling