Optoma GT1080Darbee Review Review
Optoma's latest projector is something special. The GT1080Darbee is a short throw projector that can give you a huge 100" image from a distance of just one metre, coupled with the enhanced Darbee functionality it becomes the ultimate quality portable cinema. Not only that, there is a 16ms mode that makes it the perfect gaming projector too.
In the box you get the projector - glossy white and looking beautiful with it's bulbous short throw lens - along with the power cable and remote control. Interest to note is that the inputs and outputs sit on the side of this projector resulting slightly less depth to the unit and ease of access but maybe not quite as an attractive look when mounted.
There are two HDMI ports (one MHL), an audio out, 12v out for the 3D sync and a USB port for powering external devices - interestingly this is the second Optoma projector we've looked at where we couldn't get the USB to power the Chromecast 2 but that may well be user error.
There are three adjustable legs which almost certainly will get used if you take the projector out of the home environment.
Setup is dead simple - connect the power and the devices and you're ready to go. The audio out is a simple analogue jack and I'll repeat my wish from my previous projector review for a digital optical output that could pipe 7.1 audio out to an amp just to reduce on complexity of wiring arrangements.
There isn't an option to adjust the size of the outputted image other than moving the unit backwards and forwards. There is a manual focus to aid in getting as sharp a picture as possible. We can confirm that Optoma's figures for throw distance - screen size are accurate. At just 1 metre from the wall we had a HUGE 100" picture. The further away the bigger it gets at the cost of brightness and also with a noticeable fisheye look to the image. The optimum position we found was between 1-2 metres anything more than this introduced issues. The keystone correction could have done with more delicate steps as it could take a little while to end up with something that looked perfectly square.
The 25,000:1 contrast ratio gave deep blacks and there is also the option to adjust based on screen/wall colour to enable you to get colours as close to their intended shade as possible. The 3,000 ANSI lumens that the projector outputs was plenty good enough to give a nice bright picture, even less than optimal lighting conditions.
This is a 1080p projector - no 4K here; you're talking much more money for something that can handle that - but the Darbee improvements are noticeable creating a more vibrant and sharper image than other projectors. The "Enhanced Gaming Mode" with its 16ms response time is a revelation for gamers - the reduced lag between your console and the final image makes a huge amount of difference for those who take their gaming most seriously.
The MSRP is £779.99 and even at full price we reckon this is worth every penny.
The GT1080Darbee is a quality piece of hardware and it shows in every way possible. A flawless picture and low input lag combined with the short throw lens make for an unmissable piece of kit.