Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Verdict

JVC has evolved its mid-range 4K laser projector, adding a redesigned D-ILA chipset and upgraded 8K/e-shiftX to deliver peerless black levels, increased brightness, and crisply detailed images. The HDR tone mapping is state-of-the-art, and the resulting performance is beautifully cinematic, ensuring the NZ800 remains the beamer to beat.

Pros

  • Beautiful cinematic images
  • Class-leading black levels
  • Exceptional HDR tone mapping

Cons

  • It’s a significant financial investment
  • It’s not exactly small or light

Key Features

  • Native 4KThird generation D-ILA chipset (4096 x 2160) based on LCoS technology
  • Laser light sourceBLU-Escent laser diode with a claimed brightness of 2,700 lumens and a lifespan of 20,000 hours
  • Frame Adapt HDRSecond generation dynamic tone mapping for a superior projected HDR experience
  • Theatre OptimiserCustomise the projector’s HDR to your specific home cinema setup
  • 8K/e-shiftXSecond generation four-direction processing produces an 8K-quality image of 8192 x 4320
  • 2 x HDMI 2.1 inputsSupport for 8K/60p, 4K/120p, and HDR10+

Introduction

The JVC DLA-NZ800 replaces the outgoing DLA-NZ8, and while not as revolutionary as that 4K HDR laser projector, this new model evolves its predecessor’s already class-leading performance by adding a newly redesigned D-ILA chipset and second generation 8K/e-shiftX processing.

The result is a beamer that builds on the success of the NZ8 by retaining its long-life BLU-Escent laser light source, and second generation Frame Adapt HDR and Theatre Optimiser for superior tone mapping, while also increasing the claimed output to 2,700 lumens and the contrast to 100,000:1.

Other new features include a Deep Black function, Balanced laser dimming setting, and Vivid picture mode, along with more detailed control of the overall laser power setting. The NZ800 retains the high quality all-glass lens, and HDMI 2.1 inputs with support for 8K/60p, 4K/120p, and HDR10+.

JVC has long been the projector brand that put the ‘cinema’ into home cinema, but how does the NZ800 compare to its illustrious predecessor and does it live up our expectations? Let’s find out…

Availability

The JVC DLA-NZ800 (DLA-RS3200) is the the mid-range model in brand’s 4K laser-powered line-up, it’s available now and retails for £15,999 / $15,999 / €15,999 / AU$24,999. The NZ800 sits below the range-topping DLA-NZ900 (DLA-RS4200), which costs £25,999 / $25,999 / €25,999 / AU$40,999, and above the DLA-NZ7 (DLA-RS2100), which has been retained from the earlier generation and enjoys a reduced price of £8,999 / $7,999 / €10,999 /AU$16,999.

The NZ800 doesn’t have a direct competitor and the closest is the Sony VPL-XW7000ES, which retails in the UK for £12,999, or the VPL-XW6000ES, which costs $11,999 in the US. Both projectors use SXRD, which is Sony’s version of LCoS, but while the XW7000ES is rated at 3,200 lumens, the XW6000ES only hits 2,500 lumens, and neither has support for 8K, 4K/120p or HDR10+, nor do they have HDMI 2.1 inputs. The NZ800 also has better black levels and superior HDR tone mapping, making it the perfect choice for well-heeled cinephiles.

Design

  • 65mm all-glass lens
  • High contrast light path
  • 2 x HDMI 2.1 inputs
  • Backlit remote control

The JVC DLA-NZ800 looks identical to the previous NZ8, with the same awesome build quality and massive matte black chassis that measures 500 x 234 x 505mm (WxHxD), and weighs in at a back-breaking 23.1kg. This beamer is aimed at dedicated home cinemas that use a permanent stand or ceiling mount.

JVC NZ800 right side
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

The NZ800 also uses the same 17-element, 15-group all-glass 65mm lens as the NZ8, and includes the coating on the inside of the lens barrel that was introduced on the earlier model, which is designed to suppress any reflected light and improve the overall contrast performance.

JVC DLA-NZ800 projector connections
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

There are two HDMI 2.1 inputs at the rear, both of which support bandwidths up to 48Gbps and accept 8K/60p and 4K/120p – with the latter great news for gamers. The HDMI ports also handle HDCP 2.3, 3D and high dynamic range – specifically HDR10, hybrid log-gamma (HLG), and HDR10+

JVC DLA-NZ800 projector controls
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

There’s also a 3D synchro port for the optional emitter, RS232 and Ethernet ports for serial control, a USB port for firmware updates, and a 12V trigger for use with a motorised screen. Over on the right hand side as you face the rear are some basic controls in case you misplace the zapper.

JVC DLA-NZ800 remote control
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

The provided remote control looks identical to the previous generation, but enjoys a couple of minor tweaks with a more luminescent light button, and small bumps on the on/off and enter buttons – all of which makes the zapper even easier to use in a blacked-out home cinema.

Features

  • BLU-Escent laser light source
  • Gen3 4K D-ILA chipset
  • Gen2 8K/e-shiftX
  • Gen2 Frame Adapt HDR
  • Theatre Optimiser
  • Optional 3D support

The JVC DLA-NZ800’s headline feature is the brand’s proprietary Gen3 D-ILA (LCoS – liquid crystal on silicon) 4K chipset, which is more efficient thanks to a new layout. This allows for brighter images, deeper blacks, and better uniformity, with a claimed brightness of 2,700 lumens and contrast ratio of up to 100,000:1.

The NZ800 also adds JVC’s Gen2 8K/e-shiftX device, which still physically shifts each pixel by half a pixel in four directions (up, down, left and right), allowing for a full 8K (8,192 x 4,320) image, but uses improved upscaling for increased sharpness and detail across a wide range of content.

JVC DLA-NZ800 menu example hdr
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

JVC has added a Deep Black function that uses a revised algorithm to enhance contrast without crushing shadows. In addition, the dynamic laser control adds a new Balanced setting for even punchier pictures without introducing the distracting brightness pumping seen on earlier models.

JVC DLA-NZ800 menu example picture mode
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

The laser power is controlled by a sliding scale setting, and while this still goes from 1 to 100 it’s now more useful, allowing you to gradually boost the brightness without a sudden increase in fan noise. There’s also a new Vivid mode for watching sports or gaming in rooms with ambient light.

The NZ800 retains JVC’s BLU-Escent laser diode light source with its claimed 20,000-hour lifespan, along with motorised focus, zoom and shift controls, plus lens memories for different screen aspect ratios. There’s also a Filmmaker mode, along with extensive ISF-certified calibration controls.

The latest proprietary Gen3 Frame Adapt tone mapping remains class-leading by dynamically analysing HDR10 content on a frame-by-frame basis to optimise the image. There’s also the Theatre Optimiser that enhances the tone mapping by allowing for screen’s size, shape and gain.

JVC DLA-NZ800 menu example filmmaker mode

The NZ800 can now read Display Mastering Luminance (DML) metadata that tells the tone mapping the peak brightness of the display on which the content was originally mastered. This is useful because the more metadata the tone mapping has to work with, the better the results.

Finally, while its popularity may be waning the NZ800 still supports 3D – although you will need to buy the optional emitter and active shutter glass, plus a 3D-supporting Blu-ray player, to enjoy all the immersive benefits of big screen three-dimensional action.

Performance

  • Exceptional HDR tone mapping
  • Rich and saturated colours
  • Superb image processing

The JVC DLA-NZ800 may be a cutting-edge piece of kit, but it’s a pleasingly simple projector to setup. This is primarily thanks to a generous throw ratio and motorised controls, so even a relative novice should have it up and running in no time with a picture perfectly matched to their screen.

If you select the Filmmaker mode, you’ll have a fairly accurate picture right out of the box, although if you’re dropping this kind of money you should really get it professionally calibrated. Once I’d calibrated the review sample I was impressed by the incredibly accurate measurements.

I actually use an NZ8 as my current reference projector, so I was able to directly compare the two in my dedicated home cinema. The fan noise was identical at around 24dB, but what I also noticed was that the 8K/e-shiftX device is nearly silent on the NZ800, whereas I could clearly hear it on the NZ8.

While the NZ8 is an impressive performer, I could immediately see that the NZ800’s contrast was better in my completely blacked-out room. And this wasn’t just some placebo effect, because in testing I measured the contrast ratio at up to 100,000:1, so JVC is being honest in its marketing.

The increased brightness is less obvious, and once calibrated I’d say there’s little difference compared to the NZ8. However the granular nature of the laser power setting means you can squeeze more brightness out of the NZ800 without the fan noise kicking up a gear, which is handy.

The colours are not only accurate, but also deep and richly nuanced thanks to the NZ800’s filter, which allows it to cover 100% of the DCI-P3 HDR colour gamut. While this does reduce the brightness by about 20%, it can be mitigated by gradually increasing the laser power setting.

JVC NZ800 left side
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

In terms of its performance with SDR content the NZ800 is stunning, delivering incredible levels of detail while still retaining that all-important film-like quality. The new D-ILA chipset also ensures excellent uniformity and geometry, with no annoying bright corners on the review sample.

The processing is first-class, taking lower resolution content and flawlessly upscaling it to 4K, while the 8K/e-shiftX creates a perceived resolution of 8K. I really like the latter, but didn’t use it on my NZ8 because of the noise. Now that I can’t hear it on the NZ800 I’d use it all the time.

The motion handling is equally impressive, with smooth images free of judder, blurring or other unwanted artefacts. With 24p content I’d definitely turn the clear motion drive off, but this feature can be useful when smoothing motion for greater fluidity with video-based content like sports.

As good as this projector is with SDR, when it comes to HDR it’s in a class of its own. Those deep blacks and bright highlights combine perfectly with flawless tone mapping that expertly renders HDR and making full use of the format’s increased dynamic range and wider colours.

Watching The Crow on 4K disc reveals the NZ800’s black level prowess, producing inky depths while still being able to tease out all the details in the shadows during the film’s numerous night scenes. This remarkable contrast performance gives the picture far greater dimensionality.

JVC DLA-NZ800 front view

This is where JVC is head-and-shoulders above any other projector manufacturer, producing real blacks rather than dark greys, and the new Deep Black feature is a great addition that manages to extend the latitude in the lower reaches of this beamer’s already impressive dynamic range.

At the other end of the scale the sun-bleached deserts of Arrakis and black and white sequences on Giedi Prime are rendered with precision in Dune Part Two, allowing the image to remain bright and punchy while also ensuring no details are lost in the highlights due to clipping.

The level of detail on display in Oppenheimer is exceptional, with the new D-ILA chipset and high quality all-glass lens bringing out every pixel in the native 4K image. Here the 8K/e-shiftX really comes into its own, managing to give the already impressive photography a tiny bit more sharpness.

The HDR10 is frequently breathtaking, but the NZ800’s support of HDR10+ allows this projector to take advantage of the format’s added dynamic metadata to deliver exceptional images where the more precise tone mapping gives images more depth and greater impact.

Speaking of depth, the NZ800’s 3D performance is equally eye-popping, and this remarkable projector delivers the added dimensionality with images that are bright, accurate, and free of any ghosting. You’ll need to purchase the optional RF transmitter and glasses, but if you’re a 3D fan you won’t be disappointed.

Finally, gamers will delighted to learn the input lag is only 36ms with low latency turned on, which is good for a projector. This results in enjoyably responsive game play, and once you include the 4K/120p support and long-life laser light source, the NZ800 is an excellent, if rather pricey, gaming choice.

Latest deals

Should you buy it?

You want stunningly cinematic big screen fun

The combination of deep blacks, amazing HDR tone mapping, and crispy 8K processing results in some of the best images you’ll see from a projector.

You have white walls or ambient light in the room

This projector is designed for dedicated home cinemas, any reflected light will rob the image of its deep contrast and all-important film-like quality.

Final Thoughts

The JVC DLA-NZ800 picks up from where its predecessor left off and runs with it – increasing the brightness while somehow still managing to deliver deeper blacks and wider contrast. The new 8K/e-shiftX produces exceptionally detailed images, while the latest HDR tone mapping is often breathtaking in its cinematic presentation.

Impressive accuracy, richly balanced colours, and extensive features that include support for 4K/120p and 3D round-out a near-perfect projector that, due to the lack of a direct competitor, is literally in a class of its own.

Trusted Score
rating-star rating-star rating-star rating-star rating-star

Sign up for the Trusted Reviews Newsletter

How we test

We test every projector we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.

Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.

Tested with real world use

Tested for several weeks

FAQs

Which HDR formats does the DLA-NZ800 support?

The JVC DLA-NZ800 supports HDR10, HLG, and HDR10+ HDR fomats.

Full specs

UK RRP
USA RRP
EU RRP
AUD RRP
Manufacturer
Size (Dimensions)
Weight
Release Date
Model Number
Model Variants
Resolution
Projector Type
Brightness Lumens
Lamp Life
Contrast Ratio
Max Image Size
HDR
Types of HDR
Refresh Rate
Ports
Colours
Projector Display Technology
Throw Ratio
3D

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2003, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.

Trusted Reviews Logo

Sign up to our newsletter

Get the best of Trusted Reviews delivered right to your inbox.

This is a test error message with some extra words