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Epson EH-TW6600 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £1399
inc VAT

A bright lamp, excellent lens shift and built-in speakers make this a very convenient and flexible projector


Projector type: 3-chip LCD, Native resolution: 1,920×1,080, Video inputs: 2x HDMI, VGA, component, composite, Lamp life: 3,500h, Lamp brightness: 2,500 lumen, Size: 304x410x157mm, Weight: 6.7kg

The EH-TW6600 is a rather radical departure from the rest of Epson’s 3LCD projector range. Having kept the same centrally positioned lenses and large, industrial-looking side air vents for several years, Epson’s stylish new look for the TW6600 is a breath of fresh air. Now there’s just one main air vent that’s angled to the side, hiding the fan from view when looking at it face on, while the main lens sits just off-centre, giving the whole projector a much more rounded, sleeker design.

Another major attraction is the wide amount of lens shift (+/- 24 per cent horizontal and +/- 60 per cent vertical), making it very easy to set up and get started. This lets you adjust the position of your image without physically moving the projector itself, giving it a lot more flexibility than slightly cheaper projectors such as the Optoma HD50. The lens shift isn’t electronic, so you’ll have to use the manual dials on top of the projector rather than the remote, but this is the case on even high-end projectors such as the £1,850 Sony VPL-HW40ES. The TW6600 also has manual 1.6x zoom and focus rings round the lens to help make filling your projector surface even easier.

You’ll still need to position the TW6600 toward the back of your room to get a decent sized image, as its long throw ratio of 1.32:1 to 2.15:1 means images will appear quite small if the projector is placed close to your wall or screen. You’ll still get a huge 73in diagonal from 7ft away, but its 26dB(A) of noise could be a bit distracting if you’re sitting right next to it.

All the ports are neatly hidden behind a plastic panel on the rear of the projector, located between the TW6600’s twin stereo speakers. It’s a shame the whole panel pops off instead of having a hinge to keep it attached, but there’s a wide variety of connections, including two HDMI ports, component and composite inputs, a VGA port, a USB port for projecting JPEG images from a USB stick or a compatible camera, a 3.5mm audio output, an RS-232C port for home automation systems, a 12V trigger and a mini USB service port.

If you’re concerned about the number of HDMI ports available or simply want to cut down on the number of wires in your home cinema setup, the TW6600 is also sold with a wireless HDMI transmitter pack as the TW6600W. This can transmit video wirelessly to the projector without the need for extra cables. It also has another five HDMI inputs, one HDMI output, an optical S/PDIF output for your sound system and a USB port for charging the bundled pair of 3D glasses.

The transmitter worked extremely well when we tried it out, and we didn’t see any decrease in picture quality, even when the video reception was at 40 per cent. We didn’t have to place the transmitter directly in the projector’s line of sight either, as we could still get a good signal even when it was facing away from it. Placing it behind other objects often killed the signal completely, though, making the picture completely disappear. This may problematic depending on your AV setup. However, at time of writing, the transmitter adds another £300 onto the projector’s price, which is a hefty premium for what’s essentially a relatively small bit of extra convenience.


Otherwise, the TW6600 and TW6600W are both exactly the same projector, so image quality should be identical on each model. With a 2,500 ANSI lumen lamp at its disposal, our test footage of Star Trek was beautifully bright and vivid even in our brightly lit test room, so you should have no problem watching films during the day or with the curtains left open. We could even see a good level of detail in darker night scenes with the lights on, but you’ll want to turn the lights off to make the most of its claimed contrast ratio of 70,000:1. Epson’s Auto Iris is meant to recognise the brightness of the projected image and automatically adjust the aperture of the lens to control the intensity of the lamp light, leading to brighter highlights and deeper shadows, but we found it made little difference to the overall picture.

The TW6600 is set to the Auto colour profile by default, but you’ll need to switch over to one of the other four if you want to use any of the additional picture settings. We wouldn’t recommend Dynamic, as this made the screen appear overly green and yellow, but Living Room, Natural and Cinema all produced a much more balanced colour palette.

We settled on Cinema for our testing, which gave us access to the projector’s full range of controls. As well as basic brightness, contrast, colour saturation, tint, skin tone, sharpness and colour temperature settings, the TW6600 also lets you adjust the gamma, RGB offset and RGB gain, as well as RGBCMY hue, saturation and brightness.

Sadly, the TW6600 doesn’t have frame interpolation, so you’ll have to make do with the projector’s slightly jerky image processing. We only really noticed this in particularly fast camera pans, though, and it certainly didn’t make watching films uncomfortable. As it uses LCD projection, you don’t get any rainbow effects that are common to DLP projectors either.

Super Resolution upscaling proved very effective, making films appear that much sharper and more defined, even on Blu-ray. In Star Trek it was a little too noisy for our liking on top of the intentional film grain effect, but we did appreciate the extra sense of detail it brought to close-up facial features and clothing textures in Avatar.

The TW6600 is 3D-ready, shipping with a single pair of active 3D glasses. We’d recommended watching 3D films with the lights off, as the glasses tended to produce a fair amount of extra flicker in harsh lighting conditions, which created quite a strain on our eyes. You get plenty of options to adjust the 3D to your liking, though, including 3D brightness to counter the dark glasses, 3D depth and the diagonal screen size to help balance out any crosstalk. We found the default depth to be a little too strong in Avatar, so we changed it to -2. This also helped eliminate the very slightly amount of crosstalk on the Na’vi subtitles we noticed. Otherwise, we were very pleased with the TW6600’s 3D capabilities.

Sound quality from the rear 2x10W stereo speakers was surprisingly good too. Bass was lacking, but this is to be expected. Serious home cinema enthusiasts will want to use a proper surround-sound setup to get the best audio experience; though the ability to move it around the house, or take it to a friend’s even, without having to worry about the audio is a very handy feature.

Running costs aren’t astronomical either, as replacement lamps can be bought for £82 at time of writing. This brings total running costs to just 2p per hour for the standard lamp brightness and 1p per hour on Eco mode.

We’re big fans of the EH-TW6600’s new look, and its sheer convenience. The bright lamp means you can use it in almost all lighting conditions and those built-in speakers could come in handy too. It’s most attractive feature though is the large amount of lens shift available. It’s rare to see this on a projector under £1,400, though the old-but-still-good Epson EH-TW3200 is an alternative.

The only thing the TW6600 is missing is any kind of frame interpolation, which is available on the cheaper Optoma HD50 – although that uses DLP projection which inevitably creates a small rainbow effect from the colour wheel. Right now, we also think the wireless version of the TW6600 is too expensive, as you can get the vastly superior Sony VPL-HW40ES for almost the same price. If you value the added benefit of lens shift, then the TW6600 is a good choice, but otherwise we’d say the Optoma HD50 was the better buy – as long as you don’t mind the potential rainbow effect.

Projector type3-chip LCD
3D supportYes
Contrast ratio70,000:1
Native resolution1,920×1,080
Native aspect ratio16:9
Throw ratio1.32-2.15:1
Max diagonal at 7ft distance73in
Projection distance2.95m-4.8m
Optical zoom1-1.6x
Mirror imageYes
Invert imageYes
Lens shiftManual vertical 60%, horizontal 24%
Video inputs2x HDMI, VGA, component, composite
Audio inputsN/A
Video outputsN/A
Audio outputs3.5mm stereo
Noise (in normal use)36dB(A)
Internal speaker (power)Yes (20W)
Card readerNo
Image formats readJPEG
Document formats readN/A
Lamp life3,500h
Lamp life in economy mode5,000h
Lamp brightness2,500 lumen
Price including VAT£1,399
WarrantyTwo-years carry in, lamp 36 months
Part codeEH-TW6600
Lamp cost (inc VAT)£82
Lamp cost per hour of use£0.02
Lamp cost per hour of use (economy)£0.01

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