Review: NEC Display Solutions PH1000U Digital Projector
Designed for areas with high ambient light that require a large, eye-popping screen display, including house of worship


The PH1000U is NEC’s second project to offer Open Pluggable Specification (OPS) and features a unique 3-chip, .96-inch DLP system.
February 06, 2013 By CI Staff

High-quality projection and high ambient light aren’t usually a match made in heaven. With its PH1000U digital projector, NEC Display Solutions is looking to help solve that common challenge for integrators and their clients.

The 11,000-lumen WUXGA resolution projector, which features a unique 3-chip, .96-inch DLP system is designed for areas with high ambient light that require a large, eye-popping screen display — higher education facilities, houses of worship, corporate environments and retail space. The PH1000U is NEC’s second project to offer Open Pluggable Specification (OPS), a standard in option slots to simplify installation, use and maintenance. The model seems to provide a nice combination of installer-friendly features with outstanding performance.

But don’t take our word for it. Here is one of your colleagues’ thoughts on the product.

Reviewer: Mark Willems, senior account manager, Cine Audio Visual, Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta

“The light output of the projectors was important for these 500-seat theaters with lots of ambient light on them.”

› 11,000-lumen brightness
› 2000:1 contrast ratio
› 3-Chip DLP - 1920 x 1200 WUXGA native resolution
› Dual UHP lamps with lamp life up to 2,500 hours in ECO Mode
› Open Pluggable Specification option slot including an HD/SD SDI input card and SBC
› Connectivity: HDMI with HDCP, DisplayPort, three computer inputs, component and S-Video
› Stacking capability (up to 44,000 lumens with four projectors)
› Complete line of five bayonet-style lenses with powered zoom, focus and lens shift
Estimated Price: $49,999

Tell us about a project in which you used the NEC PH1000U.
The University of Alberta project initially was deployed in 2009, with the design [having been] done by an A/V consultant in 2008. There were projection systems in two theaters. [Cine Audio Visual recently] updated the initial projectors. These theaters are used by the arts department, medicine, engineering and other departments, each with different wants and needs. The light output of the projectors was important for these 500-seat theaters with lots of ambient light on them. Accurate color reproduction and contrast ratio was also not achieved well enough by its predecessors.

Which features were instrumental in your decision to use this product versus another solution?
We looked at equivalents from some of the competition, units at similar price points. The bang for the buck was the big thing. Also, the ROI for things like lamp life; running them in NEC’s economy mode extends up to about 2,500 hours because [the projectors are] used seven days a week and rented out, so they’re high-times theaters and need high-times projectors. It is also ready to go for the theater’s planned analog-to-digital conversion.

For what types of applications do you recommend this product to other commercial integrators?
Any larger venue, house of worship or theater, they’d do very well in; any environment that [requires] high-resolution, accurate color reproduction, or smaller control rooms.

How difficult or easy is the installation?
We didn’t have any challenges, which was surprising. NEC had a suitable lens that fit the throw distance and the screen sizes. It was pretty much plug and play, very little set up, a little bit of lens calibration.

Can you name the three biggest benefits – “pros” –for an installer using this product?
Ease of setup, its dual stacking capability; light output and accurate imagery production.

Can you name the three biggest negatives – “cons”– for an installer using this product?
I have nothing. It was pretty smooth and seamless.

Now that the installation is done, how has the client reacted to it?
Those two theaters were part of phase one of the University of Alberta’s project. [Phases two and three have since begun.] We’ll be installing these projectors in four more theaters, with two projectors in each. There has to be over 1,000 NEC projectors at the University of Alberta, so it’s their projector of choice. No. 1 reason is the reliability factor, very few failures with them.

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