The Optoma HD131Xe is a remarkably powerful high resolution 1080p projector designed to deliver magnificent quality video with superb color accuracy and amazingly sharp detail. With its 2500 lumens bright image and impressive 18000:1 contrast ratio, the Optoma HD131Xe will help you create the most fantastic, most enjoyable home theater experience. Offers full 3D compatibility for seamless integration with your favorite Blu-ray 3D player, also compatible with Apple TV, gaming consoles and set-top-boxes. The Optoma HD131Xe combines industry-leading energy saving features, whisper quiet operation and Optoma's legendary performance and quality to satisfy the needs of even the most demanding home theater enthusiast.
- Maximum Resolution: WUXGA (1920 x 1200)
- Single 0.65" DC3 DMD DLP® Technology by Texas Instruments
Maxed out Performance Value, Still Needs Some Polish.
1. Aside from a zoom lens, no placement flexibility. Additionally, vertical offset adds a dimension of difficulty with setup.
2. No 12 volt trigger.
3. Hourglass meter shown when streams are being switched during blu ray playback. Input identification also is shown.
4. Remote presses are unresponsive and/or IR receiver has a very narrow reception angle requiring user to be precise when using remote.
5. Light spillage from front grill. Thankfully, this does not manifest on the screen.
6. Menu screens not completely elegant in navigation setup. Some selections exist on a second page when they could have been included on a single page. This makes going back to change a setting like retreading back through a maze.
7. Only one user setting. Although, it does appear that 2D and 3D settings are stored separately.
8. Contrast boosted during 3D playback causing washed out image.
9. Lens cap not included.
1. Awesome image processing post calibration.
A. Silky smooth. No image tearing during camera pans.
B. Very good blacks.
C. Very good shadow detail.
D. Very good colors.
E. Reduced mosquito noise effect for a DLP.
2. Should street for less than $800 soon.
3. Less than $200 bulb replacement.
4. Very organic 3D performance. No artificial pop-out book effect. Even with films transformed into 3D like Beauty and the Beast.
5. No cross-talk in 3D.
5. DLP Link and RF glasses sync at 144hz.
6. About as loud as a long exhale of breath.
7. Onboard audio is better than most LED TV’s (not that any projector user will ever use this long term).
8. Comes in black!
9. Every inch of performance, operation costs, enjoyment are absolutely maxed out at this price (under $800).
There may be some projectors that are going to be a hair less in price than the HD131Xe, but other drawbacks with those projectors will put them below the HD131Xe in value. When splitting hairs with cost, a bulb replacement of under $200 should not be discounted when price is a consideration. The cost of bulb replacement of other projectors is going to run $350-$500. Some projectors may be brighter, but at the cost of being louder. And there is no projector at under $800 that can match its black level performance. The only way to gain on the performance of this projector is to pay more. And the only reason I am hesitant to give it a perfect 5-star rating has more to do with Optoma’s laziness than the limitations of the actual projector. Optoma has its roots in the business class projector arena. That these business class vestiges are still around really is why this projector isn’t perfect in its class. Take for instance offset. With 4 people huddled around a projector with an image being projected high up on a wall, offset proves valuable in say circa 2004. But in today’s world where virtual meeting software allows everyone to view the presentation on their own private laptop screen or without even being in the same room, offset is not needed. The idea that a projector serves the dual purpose of being a business projector that can be used for entertainment doesn’t exist anymore. Projectors are either Home Theater projectors or large venue projectors for business use. Optoma needs to get rid of this silly offset. They are really shutting out the basement theater room and low ceiling folks from buying their products. Give some lens offset to widen the potential market and flexibility for users. Most viewing devices today get thrown all sort of media at them: video games, blu rays, TV, sports, internet rips, etc. None of these media sources are equal. So it really is cripling to users for Optoma to have only included one single user setting. And that this is the case is an indictment towards Optoma’s laziness. Optoma, realize that the landscape for business projectors has long since eroded. Projectors are no longer going to be fed just Microsoft Windows from a laptop. Using the same resources already at Optoma, programmers could very easily give users at least just one more user setting for different media types we are throwing at it. Prolonged refusal to do this is just plain laziness. In a home theater environment, where the user is attempting to duplicate the moving going experience at home, we don’t need to be reminded that our efforts are artificial by having a ticking hourglass displayed with streams are being swtiched during blu ray playback. Improve those HDMI handshakes and get rid of these nag screens. These things that I mention as cons are really the polish that is needed to lift Optoma projectors from the respected and reputable, and into the reverent elite and beloved.
Excellent Budget 1080p Projector with 144Hz DLPLink or RF3D Support
+ Noise: Nearly Silent in ECO Mode. My seating position is directly under the projector and I do not hear it over my HTPC/PS3 located in the corner of the same room. Bright Mode is slightly audible, but does not emit a high pitched fan noise. I cannot stress this point enough. My central air is much louder than this…If the projector wasn’t throwing a giant image on my screen, I wouldn’t know that its on. Its that quiet to me!
+ Price : I got this on Preorder for $ 7 6 9 . It seems to be in price flux with supply/demand. If you see this for above $9, just buy the HD25e (similar specs, brighter, more contrast, white color). Excellent value and Bang/Buck. It will be great if the price settles down to under $800 again.
+ Black Levels and Colors were very good right outside of the Box. Several Color Presets available as well as Fine Tuning of Color Temperature (Warm/Cool), Color Space (RGB Full 0-255 or RGB Limited 16-235 or YUV), and Hue/Saturation/Gain Levels for Red/Green/Cyan/Magenta/Blue/Yellow. RGB Adjustment on White. If you want to fine tune and professionally calibrate, you should be able to. This is a budget projector, but Shadow Details were pretty good. On projectors with horrible black levels, even the empty black side borders (like a 2.35:1 aspect ratio movie on a 16:9 screen) will be a washed out black or light grey.
+ Input Lag : This projector is very responsive. I play 3D Fighting Games which require 1-Frame Links (Button Presses with 1/60th of a second timing) to execute combos. I did not have any problems playing demanding video games on this projector. It should not hinder your gameplay. I have most post processing features turned off (BrilliantColor, Dymaic Black, Noise Reduction, Edge Masking, Zoom).
+ RF 3D: I paired this up with the Optoma RF 3D Glasses and 3D Emitter. Watched Avengers in 3D without any problems. Very impressive, did not notice any dropouts or abnormalities even when viewing from the opposite side of the room.
+ Lamp Replacement is affordable: A quick google of the 190W BL-FU190E shows $179 replacement cost. The Lamp is rated at 6000 Hours in Eco Mode, or 3500 in Bright Mode. 6000 Hours is about 4 years using the projector for 4 hours a day
- Remote Control Backlighting: Extremely bright blue blacklighting. Borderline offensive
- Flimsy Plastic Zoom and Focus: Does not feel sturdy at all. Very loose. I havn’t noticed focus or zoom drifting though
- Did not come with Lens Dust Cap (although manual refers to it)
- Placement requires more pre-planning due to no Horizontal/Vertical Lens Shift
Other Comments (neither pro or con)
1. 2D/3D Color Settings are maintained separately. Meaning you have to be in a 3D Mode (SBS, T&B, Seq) to alter your 3D color settings. It definitely saves different settings in 2D/3D modes
2. If 3D is a top priority, you may still want to get a brighter projector like the HD25e or HD25-LV. Brightness takes a big hit when you put on 3D Glasses (I used Optoma RF ones). I’d recommend putting the projector in Bright Mode or having a very well light controlled room for Eco Mode 3D.
3. Power Consumption Read from a Kill-a-Watt Meter:
4. Did not and will not test the speaker. I think its a useless feature for a home theater projector
Best Bang for your Buck
I debated on the HD33 when it came out, on the benq 1070 and then the optoma hd25 and 25lv. As you can see from the projectors I have been looking at, they all have about 3 things in common. They all have 3d, they all have around 2000 lumens, and they are all under 1500.00. When I saw the optoma hd131xe come out at under 800.00 that met all my criteria, I waited to see a few reviews before I pulled the trigger. I almost waited for CNET because I love and respect their reviews, but my anticipation got the better of me. Boy am I glad it did!!!!! For the money, you WILL NOT find a better projector. Right out of the box this thing looks amazing. It’s more than bright enough on eco mode (6000 hour rated), that I don’t even see myself using bright unless it’s in 3d. The blacks are good, NOT OUTSTANDING, but for the price really unbelievable. The picture is greeeeaaaat, even my wife complimented on it, and she could care less about my man cave.
Will this projector contend with higher end projectors ???? probably not. It doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles and it doesn’t seem like their is a lot of adjustment options (I’ve only played with it for about a week and haven’t felt like I needed to adjust it much). Make sure you do a little research on that, if that’s important for you! Lens shift would have been nice, and limits where you can mount it. That is my only REAL complaint, but again you aren’t touching that feature at this price, so I live with a little bit of an offset throw. One of the reviewers was right about the mount holes being small and awkward. The universal mount that I also bought here on amazon didn’t fit it, and I really had to make shift a solution. The holes are really close together and I was only able to get 2 legs to mount. “The bottom line” is that the minor bads on this projector aren’t BAD. Price taken into consideration this projector is A NO BRAINER! I don’t foresee anyone being able to beat this feature set, for this kind of price for awhile. 3D, Native 1080p, 2500 lumens, AND 18000:1 contrast. Do yourself a favor and if you reading this review and debating BUY IT as it is the BEST BANG FOR YOUR BUCK!
Impressive and economical
Now as for this Optoma, I find the overall picture sharpness as good if not better than both the BenQ W1070 and the Optoma Dw339 I’m replacing. This projector has better blacks and shadow detail than the BenQ W1070, as well as a lot better 3D viewing using DLP-link.( I used the same glasses I had used with the BenQ, so I know the difference is in the projector’s ability) I like the fact that you can also play SBS and TB from your computer and get excellent results.
It is quiet and bright, it has a good throw ( I’m getting a 120 inch picture with a 13 foot throw). And best of all it counts actual hours of use, not equivalent hours as the BenQ does. It is fairly straight forward to setup and calibrate. During installation I did face an unusual problem you need to be aware of, the mounting holes on the bottom are not a standard size as the other projectors I’ve had. I’ve seen no mention of this in any of the other reviews either, so maybe it’s just my experience or lack of. But you will need three M3 screws, which is a very small screw with extra fine threads. I went all over town trying to find them so I know it’s not a common screw size.
Everything considered, I believe this projector will set the standards that all sub $1000.00 projectors will be measured. It has excellent performance, Optoma has always proven to be reliable and with the bulb costing only $179 and having a 6000 hr life span, it’s also going to be an economical projector to own and operate. I really don’t see a downside to owning this projector. It may not be a perfect projector, but with a cost of less than $800.00 it has to be the best bang for the buck you can get right now.
You’d have to pay double to get a better projector
I use it mostly for watching Blu-rays, and gaming (Xbox One, 360, Wii U, PS3). So far it works great in every application I throw at it.
Most projectors matching the specs of this one are a few hundreds dollars more. You can maybe find some with a higher lumen output, but that alone is definitely not worth paying several hundred more than this one. The value this one has for its price is unheard of. Full 1080p HD, 3D support, high lumen output, more video inputs/ports than I will ever need, HDMI 1.4a spec, low bulb replacement cost, black finish (most are white). These were all good selling points I was looking for, and coupled with the great price, pushed me to purchase this model.
The quality of the video output is great. It can be substantially improved from its default settings by using an AV optimization DVD or something along those lines though. I can use the projector with the lights on too if necessary, but it obviously looks much worse than it does when the lights are off and windows completely covered.
I like having a good choice of inputs in case I need to connect it to an older laptop or game console, or basically anything without HDMI. But as I have a pretty good AV receiver, I use that to manage all my various connections, so I only use the HDMI 1 input. But since it’s the HDMI 1.4a spec, it can handle 3D and any gaming situation I give it. It should be at least moderately future-proof.
One other little bonus gem (feature I didn’t know existed until after I set it up) is that you can remove the Optoma logo on start-up and replace it with your own. Totally unnecessary for most people, but I thought that was awesome, so I sketched out a sweet home theater logo with our family name and custom graphics, just to (attempt) to impress visitors that use it. I’m probably the only one who will really think that’s cool, but whatever.
There aren’t a lot of things I don’t like about this projector, but since it’s not perfect I will explain. The remote feels like very low-quality cheap made-in-China garbage. It works, so I can’t complain too much, but it’s one of the worst-looking and feeling remotes I’ve ever used. Fortunately, all I really need to for was initial setup options, and to turn it on and off. I will probably also program my AV receiver remote to work with the projector also, so I won’t need to use the Optoma one at all.
It’s tricky getting all four corners perfectly in focus. When I get the top perfectly in focus, the bottom gets slightly blurry, and vice-versa.
I also would have really liked an ethernet port or some kind of network connectivity like my TVs all have. But I can’t deduct a star for lacking that feature, since for the price range I’m already getting far more than any other projectors have. I didn’t want to pay double the price for slightly higher lumens and an ethernet port that certain other models offered.
The projector isn’t totally silent, but it is definitely an acceptable level of noise. You can hear the fan if you are trying to listen for it, but it’s not distracting or annoying like how deafeningly loud my original Xbox 360 and PS3 were.
The last thing I’m not thrilled about is how expensive the 3D glasses are. I have six pairs of active 3D glasses for my Samsung smart TV, so me and any family/friends/visitors can all watch in 3D at the same time. The TV included four and extra pairs are not unreasonably priced. At a hundred bucks MSRP, or even, amazon’s 25% lower price, for EACH one, I definitely cannot describe them as affordable. I’d like to eventually get four, but I just don’t know if I’ll ever be able to justify the price since it’s mostly just me and my wife watching stuff on it. I rarely go 3rd-party on electronics, but I may look into getting some cheaper glasses that don’t have the Optoma name, if I can get them for half the price of Optoma’s.
Overall though, very happy with this purchase. The only thing left to see is how well the lamp holds up. I’m hoping I won’t have to replace it for a long time, but fortunately, the bulb replacement cost on this one is lower than most, which is another great reason to consider this projector.
Fantastic for the price
- Price/Performance ratio (Can’t beat it!)
- Very bright, easily usable as a computer monitor with standard room lighting
- Good quality speakers, will hold you over while you get your surround system set up, or if you’re on the road.
- Fast turn on and shut down (~5 seconds)
- Very quite, at ceiling level you won’t even hear it
- Zoom helps fit the image size to your screen without having the throw distance (thus your mounting location) perfect.
- No lens shift, I have it sitting upside down on a shelf at ceiling level with a towel under it so it doesn’t get scratched up and I had to bunch the towel under the back of it to get it tilted just right (without using yucky keystone correction). Haven’t used ceiling mounts before so maybe it’s not such an issue with those if they let you tilt it forward/backward easily enough.
- Remote control is BRIGHT. This is a minor picky point but I think it’s way too bright and can ruin the mood.
- Changing the volume brings up a large white image which can shift your contrast and ruin your black levels while it’s displayed. Not a problem unless you use the speakers, which most people won’t.
- Mine came with keystone correction set to maximum, which made trying to find the right mount location an impossible challenge until I realize what was wrong.
- Short power cable. Most people will ceiling mount this, I hope you have an outlet on your ceiling or a long extension cord. Even at the wall (without having to cross the ceiling at all) this cable won’t reach a standard outlet.
Not really a con, but I wish it had feet on the top for people like me who are setting it on a shelf at ceiling level. Accidentally turned it off several times while trying to position and align it just right due to the power button on the top. No projectors have this, and most people don’t mount it this way, but it would be nice.
Haven’t tried the 3D features yet, so no comment on that.
Overall, if you aren’t used to multiple-thousand dollar projectors that can display perfect black and bright white at the same time (and once you get it mounted properly) you will be extremely happy with this. At 16′ this gives me a 9×5 foot (125" diagonal) image that is bright enough to use as a computer display with the lights on!