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» Film-Tech Forum   » Operations   » Digital Cinema Forum   » Sell me on a CP2000 (Page 1)

 
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Author Topic: Sell me on a CP2000
Galen Murphy-Fahlgren
Master Film Handler

Posts: 405
From: Canton, MI, USA
Registered: Oct 2007


 - posted 06-18-2008 10:13 PM      Profile for Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Email Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
The company for which I work is in the process of planning it's digital rollout, and my theater is among a half dozen slated to receive a single 2k system sometime this summer. This company already has a single all digital location, which was a new build that has just recently opened. However, this location is equipped with Barcos, which I have heard less than stellar reports on. So, what I want is to know why, from the perspective of the corporate execs who make these decisions, I should have a Christie package instead of the Barco that they apparently haven't had issues with yet.

I am told that Christie has a buy-back program on their 35mm stuff when you buy their DLP setup, but we would be ditching a V5, Potts platter and Big Sky lamphouse/automation, and keeping our Christies for the time being. We have corporate techs, who likely would be getting some training on the things, so I don't know how important a good service contract is, at least from corporate's perspective (I know I would like Christie support, but they don't put much stock in what I think).

Or, alternatively, if the Barco isn't so bad, please tell me how wonderful it is. Maybe I've just built the Christie up in my mind. Regardless, advice on making this transition is what I'm really looking for, though since I will still have six operating 35mm systems, I will always be able to tinker with them when I get fed up with computerized crap.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
Resident Trollmaster

Posts: 16657
From: Music City
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 06-18-2008 11:36 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
The truth put... Christie is the only "Digital(and film) Company" that truely has their act together. More experience, the most modern production facilities dedicated to just DLP production with room to double production ability when necessary, best tech support in all areas, best on site and off site training, quickest to return calls, best designed projectors, Spotless up to date film equipment production facilities, the equipment works properly out of the box, they are really nice folks to do buisness with, they sincerely want the end user to be happy with the product. I've seen them go to great extremes to do so. Superior dealer support. Of course most here expect me to make this post but I would not have posted any of this 5 years ago. They cleaned house a while back and obviously got back on the track stayed there and branched out in may other positive directions all at once... while most other U.S. based companies have derailed, are still stuck at the cross track, or are frantically buying up other little companies so they can still exist in a digital age.

My experience with BARCO... They are near impossible to get parts for, They usually want to sell you new boards at high prices instead of providing more economical R/A/ boards, They don't return calls, The sealed light engine is totally unecessary and only adds more needless expense to the overall cost, BARCO's DLP division seems to be no more than a corner on someones desk, I could go on but this is enough.

NEC... Excellent images emerge from them but they are a virtual rats nest of thoughtless wiring and hoses. The base as made by Strong is already on version 3. The good thing is you don't have to deal with Strong to buy them. There is also NEC Direct. NEC also has a well structured leasing company with many plans and options that can be tailored for theater owners and the usual up and down cash flow. You don't have to lease NEC equipment. They will lease other makes of DLP projectors and most servers.

However, best of luck with what ever choice you guys do make.

Mark

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David Zylstra
Master Film Handler

Posts: 432
From: Novi, MI, USA
Registered: Mar 2007


 - posted 06-19-2008 12:58 AM      Profile for David Zylstra   Email David Zylstra   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
First thing would be if the projectors are part of one of the integrators packages - i.e. AccessIT's current install base is 100% Christie/DoReMi (for sure the next wave will have a Dolby option, it is unknown if they will still be 100% Christie); TDC's base is a mix of all manufacturers and I'm assuming the actual final choice was left up to the exhibitor; DCIP AFAIK will allow it's memebers to choose their preferred equipment; I hear Kodak is doing some rollouts but I have not heard specifics (beyond assuming they are using their server and TMS).

If the equipment is being purchased I'm sure many issues factored in - i.e. past experience with certain manufacturers, current claims of the manufacturer chosen, comfort level that the chosen manufacturers will deliver on their promises, ongoing maintenance costs if a service plan is chosen, a company's equipment dealer's preference on which package to sell (don't forget many dealers and installers feel slighted because of how the AccessIT deals and installs were done), and there's the final factor - price - sometimes a package is chosen simply because it is the cheapest (or "total cost of ownership" works out to be the lowest).

We may be buying our own equipment for our next building and while I will be looking at all options (Barco, NEC, Sony and Christie) I have a personal bias towards Christie since our current solution runs well and I know what to expect when talking to them.

Edit - You may find that you like the Barco (in spite of any complicated maintenance issues - especially if all you have to do is run them and take care of the minor maintenance, let the company techs complain about repairs). I know several techs from different service companies (and dealers) that like Barco simply because they were first to train them on installing their systems and pushed sales (it was only recently that these techs were given Christie training). Please post your thoughts when you get the projector(s) installed or if you happen to visit a location that already has them.

[ 06-19-2008, 02:20 PM: Message edited by: David Zylstra ]

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Tim Reed
Better Projection Pays

Posts: 5246
From: Northampton, PA
Registered: Sep 1999


 - posted 06-19-2008 11:01 PM      Profile for Tim Reed   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Mark Gulbrandsen
Christie is the only "Digital(and film) Company" that truely has their act together.
 -

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Frank Angel
Film God

Posts: 5305
From: Brooklyn NY USA
Registered: Dec 1999


 - posted 06-28-2008 10:02 PM      Profile for Frank Angel   Author's Homepage   Email Frank Angel   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Is Sony the only company putting their effort in 4K projectors? Suposedly they are showing their second generation 4Ks capable of projecting 3D (which their prototype could not) and supposedly they have fixed the light-starved lumen output that plagued their first round. At least that what THEY are saying at Cinema Expo.

Is anyone following the 4K route? Sure, there may not be much 4K product out there now, especially with 2K intermediates, but if the theatres start putting in 4K units, it would follow that if not the studios, then at least the producers and directors will want to be making 4K pictures. One would think...er....hope.

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Richard Fowler
Film God

Posts: 2392
From: Ft. Lauderdale, FL, USA
Registered: Jun 2001


 - posted 06-29-2008 05:35 AM      Profile for Richard Fowler   Email Richard Fowler   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Barco has a 4k unit but it is not being promoted by the Digital Cinema Division......

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Steve Guttag
We forgot the crackers Gromit!!!

Posts: 12814
From: Annapolis, MD
Registered: Dec 1999


 - posted 06-29-2008 08:11 AM      Profile for Steve Guttag   Email Steve Guttag   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
That is because the LX-5 is not a DLP...it is an LCoS machine, much the same as the Sony's. It is also only 4500 lumens. Then there are the contrast issues (anything that manipulates the light to alter contrast is a no-no...contrast ratio is to be measured with a checkerboard pattern).

Steve

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Galen Murphy-Fahlgren
Master Film Handler

Posts: 405
From: Canton, MI, USA
Registered: Oct 2007


 - posted 06-29-2008 05:51 PM      Profile for Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Email Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well, my company apparently decided on the Barco DP-3000, I believe. I will give this thing the benefit of the doubt, but if it turns out to be awful, I will be both smug and bitter. They are replacing the CP45/DA20 in that theater with some processor I have never even heard of, although I can understand not wanting to spend nearly $10k on the CP650 I asked for.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
Resident Trollmaster

Posts: 16657
From: Music City
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 06-29-2008 06:21 PM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Parts will be an issue with Barco for sure and the sealed light engines which so far show no real definate advantage are much more expensive to replace! They probably went with the USL JSD-80 which is a dynamite processor. Also, more or less plug for plug/pin for pin compatable with the CP-650.

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Louis Bornwasser
Film God

Posts: 4441
From: prospect ky usa
Registered: Mar 2005


 - posted 06-29-2008 06:37 PM      Profile for Louis Bornwasser   Author's Homepage   Email Louis Bornwasser   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
JSD-80D is real good. And the CP-650 isn't $10K either. Louis

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Steve Guttag
We forgot the crackers Gromit!!!

Posts: 12814
From: Annapolis, MD
Registered: Dec 1999


 - posted 06-29-2008 07:55 PM      Profile for Steve Guttag   Email Steve Guttag   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Had you all kept the CP-45 (presumming you were okay with it)...a Dolby DMA8 Plus or the USL ECI-60 would have allowed your CP-45 to continue on with DCinema. But if you want 1/3-Octave EQ on all channels then yes....this was a good excuse to replace the CP-45.

Note, with DCinema...there is no real need to use a Cinema Specific product unless you plan to keep film equipment. The JSD-80, while not cut out for screening room work is a lot of bang for the buck in mainstream cinemas. It has probably the most impressive feature set. USL has hit a home run with that one.

I've found the Barco software to be substantially superior to the others I've worked with. As to the sealed light engines...time will tell.

The fact that Christie machines are made in non-Euro countries (Canada/Japan/USA) will tend to keep their repairs a bit more reasonable so long as the dollar value stinks.

Steve

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Galen Murphy-Fahlgren
Master Film Handler

Posts: 405
From: Canton, MI, USA
Registered: Oct 2007


 - posted 06-29-2008 08:30 PM      Profile for Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Email Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well, I wanted a CP650 largely because it is a known quantity. I already have one and can use it well enough for my purposes. And Louis, a CP650 with 35mm and DCinema capability with all the cards lists on Dolby's site for $13.5k or so. I realize nobody pays list, and we probably could scavenge up some of the cards, but I'd guess that still puts the cost of a new unit in the $8k range for our install. I will check with my manager on what unit we are getting because I am curious about what I'm coming up against.

On my end, the server and all that good stuff is going to be more important, since I will likely never turn a wrench on any of it. I expect that it will be a fun few weeks after the install, which should be in the next week or so. They want it up and running for Journey blah blah in 3D.

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Lyle Romer
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1400
From: Davie, FL, USA
Registered: May 2002


 - posted 06-30-2008 07:32 AM      Profile for Lyle Romer   Email Lyle Romer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
If you are taking out the 35mm, the CP650 has a D-cinema only version that is list for around $7,000.

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Mark Gulbrandsen
Resident Trollmaster

Posts: 16657
From: Music City
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 06-30-2008 08:25 AM      Profile for Mark Gulbrandsen   Email Mark Gulbrandsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Galen Murphy-Fahlgren
Well, I wanted a CP650 largely because it is a known quantity.
I'd have to say the same thing about the JSD-80. Its pretty difficult to beat it and it's acccessory internal AES decoder card also works really well.

quote: Galen Murphy-Fahlgren
On my end, the server and all that good stuff is going to be more important, since I will likely never turn a wrench on any of it. I expect that it will be a fun few weeks after the install, which should be in the next week or so. They want it up and running for Journey blah blah in 3D.

I think you will find the systems to be very reliable and extremely reliable at least until you need something from Barco.

Mark

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Galen Murphy-Fahlgren
Master Film Handler

Posts: 405
From: Canton, MI, USA
Registered: Oct 2007


 - posted 07-09-2008 12:11 PM      Profile for Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Email Galen Murphy-Fahlgren   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Well, my DP-3000 is in, sitting on all the Kodak server crap that Barco sells you. We did get the JSD-80, and so far I've found it to function just as well as the CP-650, plus other people can figure out how to set fader presets, which is either an advantage or a disadvantage, depending how you look at it.

We haven't gotten actual content to show yet, just some trailers that the Barco rep carries with her. For some reason, our Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D won't be arriving until tomorrow, so we'll have no time whatsoever to correct any issues with Real D or even running a full feature. Awesome.

My first impression of the Kodak software is that it is made for children and has no security at all. There is no password required in between boot-up and operation, and no way to lock out the system. The only password protected functions are the ingesting screen and the extremely limited setup controls. The interface is reminiscent of the Picture Project or whatever bullshit software came with my sister's $80 Kodak point and shoot camera, and looks downright idiotic compared to what I remember of the Christie/AccessIT stuff that my competitor has. For some reason, the touchscreen (which is the only control, no keyboard or mouse) is just sitting on some mystery piece of equipment next to the front of the projector. It is too low to actually sit at, unless you wanted to sit on the step of the platform, and you can't turn the excessively bright monitor off to cut down on ambient booth light, because when you turn it back on, I guess the touchscreen doesn't respond (the Barco rep said this with no hint of remorse or understanding of just how stupid it is).

All in all, I reserve final judgement until Friday, but I expect that all of my worst fears are being realized. If they try to hoist six more of these on us, I probably will be in the market for a new occupation.

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