In the world of engineering diagrams, a line is much more than just a line. It can be a wall, a ceiling, a circuit, or an indication of any number of other important details. Displaying the fine lines of AutoCAD drawings with a video projector requires precision and clarity. For the Orlando-based consulting engineering firm TLC Engineering for Architecture, this means using the Canon REALiS SX50 Multimedia Projector, which outputs high-resolution SXGA+ image quality at a contrast ratio of 1000:1 and a brightness of 2,500 ANSI Lumens. Employing a unique design that combines Canon’s patented AISYS (Aspectual Illumination System) optical engine with next-generation LCoS (Liquid Crystal on Silicon) imaging panels, the REALiS SX50 projector provides crisp display of computer graphics, spreadsheets, text, digital still photos, and full-motion high- or standard-definition video. The REALiS SX50 projector also features a high-performance Canon 1.7x Ultra-Wide Angle Lens that can project a 100-inch image from a distance of just 9.8 feet.
“We provide our own in-house training, and needed a lightweight projector for our conference rooms that could display AutoCAD images at very high resolution to reduce jagged lines,” explains Tom Munson, Division Director of TLC’s Communications and Technology Division. “I fell in love with the REALiS SX50 projector when I first saw it. We purchased five of them for our new headquarters and branch offices.”
TLC’s training program is known as TLC University, which teaches new employees about the highly specialized AutoCAD techniques the company has developed on top of standard AutoCAD software. Instructors teach the new employees the nuances of AutoCAD as well as various other essential software programs.
“We needed to make sure the projector could render very specific colors and line weights in AutoCAD so that they stand out the way we wanted them represented and match our computer monitors’ output,” Munson explains. “With some of the other projectors we’ve used, the native resolution just wasn’t there to capture the actual quality of the lines. Our research criteria also demanded a projector that provided enough punch that it wasn’t drowned out by task lighting. The REALiS SX50 projector not only meets our internal needs, its performance has convinced me to specify this line on several design projects.”
“I haven’t been real happy with other products that have spinning color wheels or screen-door effects,” Munson continues. “We’ve got students in there for maybe a full eight hours watching a projected image, and when you use a color wheel, you can actually get a headache after a while. But with LCoS, you eliminate the flickering, the rainbow effect, and the screen door effect–all of the negative sides you see with some of the other projector technologies.”
Canon’s patented AISYS optical engine maximizes the imaging advantages of LCoS technology, while achieving both the high brightness of 2,500 ANSI Lumens and contrast ratio of 1000:1, while also reducing projector size. At 8.6 lbs., the REALiS SX50 projector is the smallest, lightest SXGA+ (1400 x 1050 resolution) LCoS projector in the world.
“When you fly, you want to be able to take it on the plane with you. The REALiS lends itself very well to travel. It also has very intuitive connections, and has no trouble connecting to a computer and starting up right away. The projector also has a DVI connection so that you can take advantage of HD presentation when you’re ready. We project our PowerPoint presentations and our video presentations for potential clients to hire us as their engineering firm, and sometimes they’re spending more time talking about our projector than they are talking about our presentation!”
Features and Performance
The REALiS SX50 projector is designed for classrooms, boardrooms, and all other mission-critical professional environments that demand crisp, precise image-projection quality. One of four Multimedia Projectors in Canon’s REALiS line, the REALiS SX50 features multiple Image Modes that provide a wide range of display settings, depending on user needs. These Image Modes include four Color-Preset Modes, which are designated as Standard, Presentation, sRGB, and Cinema. Additional Image Modes include: Dynamic Gamma Correction for optimum contrast balance; Six-Axis Color Adjustment to fine-tune tone and contrast adjustments on both RGB and CMY color axes; a Greenboard Mode to adjust colors for optimal display on green chalkboards; and Memory Color Correction for photo display of colors based on subjective human recollection.
The REALiS SX50 projector also includes multiple input jacks and connectors, and can accept a wide variety of digital and analog computer display formats. In addition to DVI video, inputs include all major component, composite, and S-video inputs. All connectors attach from the side of the projector housing for convenient cable placement.
Munson sees the REALiS SX50 projector as playing a vital role in his business. “We’re going to start doing video conferencing to our remote offices for training, rather than flying our staff in and out of Orlando. As we move forward with that, it is vital that we have a good, clear, bright image that our Orlando training group can use to push information to our remote offices. We’ve also bought SX50 projectors for the remote offices, so that they too can have a high quality projector that they’d use not only for training, but to take along on presentations to try and win projects. The one thing we ask when trying any new product is always Is this really a product that we would want to stake our name on?’ The REALiS SX50 projector was a great find for us, and its performance has not disappointed.”