Vivitek D950HD Video Projector Review
The Vivitek D950HD is one of a few 1080p home theater projectors out now that cost less than a grand.
At its brightest, the Vivitek D950HD is looking mighty with 2477 lumens. This peak brightness competes with some of the brightest models at this price point, making it versatile for a host of situations from the classroom to a darkened theater room. Using our calibration, where we adjust for the widest and most accurate range of colors and black and white values, the brightness was significantly diminished. For our calibration, the one that will be best for your home theater setup, we suggest that the Vivitek D950HD only be used in a very dark room for best picture clarity.
Our tunnel contrast test is typically very difficult for video projectors. We display varying amounts of black, from 0 to 100% area, on a screen and test the brightness of the black level in the center of the screen. As these areas get smaller, the black level tends to rise significantly. The Vivitek D950HD, though definitely getting brighter, maintained a presentable black level throughout the test. The changes in black level may seem large, but are barely noticeable.
In the brightest mode, we noticed falloff of brightness on some of the edges and the corners. The dimmed areas were wholly inconsistent, with the bottom right corner as bright as the center, but the top right corner was the dimmest section of the projection by about 25%. Looking at the screen, it was hard to tell the difference between the center and the corners, and ultimately the Vivitek D950HD gets a high score here.
The greyscale gamma graph shows the amount of difference between black and white values along the spectrum from darkest to lightest. A flatter line would indicate little difference between values, meaning an inability to show detail at a given section of the brightness spectrum. A steeper line would mean that there are big differences between values, differences that can be too large. Ideally, we look for a straight-ish line with a slope of 2.2.
The graph in the chart we see below is both too shallow and too steep. At the darkest end you can see that the line is almost flat, meaning that shadows will appear as big black cutouts rather than showing subtle details in the dark. With an average slope of 2.46, we know that, when the line starts to get steep, it is overly steep, increasing far too fast for the input signal. The result of differences too large is a lot of contrast, but also a loss of overall detail distinction.
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