I can say without a doubt this has been one long, strange journey with my home theater set up. Being a big Sony fan the past how many years I can say it has been a very long time since I had a JVC hanging (RS60) in my theater. I have seen some of their past models installed in other places and have had a couple other brands at the house but never this close and intimate like I am with this NZ9! After participating in a JVC seminar in early September I was very excited about the NZ9 and all the innovative features it was coming with. Will this projector live up to the hype? Let's find out!
After first mounting this big boy (yes- it's way easier with two people) I was immediately shocked to see the set up screen on my wall basement beam. It was the sharpest out of the box I have ever seen a projector come with. I snapped a quick pic of it (over to the right.)
Getting it set up was super easy and I was up and at them in no time. I haven't had any unbiased third parties over to make measurements (just got it) but will update this Review when I do. I will say the image was definitely bright and punchy with extreme sharpness and clarity. The High Laser setting can be loud especially in a silent room but once we got the movie going it wasn't a factor. I actually forgot I left it in High instead of Mid where I had planned to leave it. The majority of this Review will
be mainly about the NZ9 on its own but I have also been using it with my Envy Extreme Video Processor which was written about here. This combination has clearly proven to produce the best image to date in my theater. I have recently had a Sony 1025ES, JVC NX9, Sony 715ES, Epson 3800, Sony 915ES and Sony 995ES. The Sony 995 and 1025 were obviously the top Sony models which with the Envy also have created amazing images but the JVC NX9 was right on their heels. Being a lamp based model it was impressive hanging close to the laser crowd. The 915 and 715 are close to that tier but just a little less sharp and bright. Finally my Epson 3800 which we use for outdoor movie nights is still worthy of a mention. So how does the JVC NZ9 best the competition? It is the perfect combination of specs and features which translate to unparalleled performance. Before I get into content below I want to mention I was able to participate in a JVC Seminar on September 1st 2021. It was super informative and very public friendly. I will share some of their educational product slides:
"The NZ9 is the perfect combination of specs and features which translate to unparalleled performance."
As you can see the entire line up is stacked with features and impressive specs. The competition has a lot of work to do just to catch up. As many know I am a Sony fanboy or advocate for their brand. I was somewhat prepared for the impact of the NZ9 because of the NX9 and how good it was. I just wasn't expecting next level performance. Some of the standout features include the EDID settings. Being able to switch this from 1080 (C) all the way up to 8K (A) ensures component compatibility will not be an issue. Speaking of compatibility I went through a couple of different HDMI cables before I finally settled on the NEW Audioquest Cherry Cola which is an Active Fiber Optical 33 foot cable. It was able to pass 8K/60p from the Envy Extreme without a problem. It also was seamless with all sources and resolutions. And yes for the money it should but that's why I spent it! Some will point out we don't need 8K yet but being ready with knowing you have a cable capable doesn't hurt. Not to mention for those with an Envy Extreme Video Processor it is fun sending 8K to the NZ9. Also for those who might plan to play video games!
Speaking of 8K... Using the Envy Extreme to send 8K/60p 12 bit looked fantastic. This is definitely unchartered waters and it is cool knowing you're on the cutting edge of technology. It's also great to know the JVC NZ9 can accept 8K and display it beautifully.
So let's focus on the NZ9 and its impressive 8K e-shift. I like High-res 1 with Enhance on 7 or 8. This to my eyes looked sharp with impressive clarity. I definitely can see why everyone finds the JVC's black levels intoxicating. I tested some of our favorite scary movies and the night scenes really were immersive. The newest Conjuring and then I spent some time in space with Gravity, Passengers and then back on earth with Oblivion. My sources were the newest Apple 4K and the Oppo 203. Other settings I am liking are CMD (Clear Motion Drive) on Low. We seem to prefer the Picture Mode on Natural for everything. Gamma 2.4 with the color temp at 6500K. Some other notable features include the Screen specific settings. You can dial in your screen's dimensions and gain which will Optimize your Theater experience. Also on the Sony models I have always appreciated their Masking feature. It's refreshing to see it here on the NZ9 as well. Being able to tweak the sides and tops of the image to perfection really makes a difference. The amount of Lens Control is very flexible. Everyone should be able to accurately dial in their image with ease. I also am not used to the ability to "Hide" your image at the touch of a button in the theater. If little ones are coming down the stairs its nice to be able to do so. Of course most of our movies are at night when they're asleep but it's still comforting to know there's a cool Hide feature. Last but not least I have to say again how razor sharp those menus are!
The Conjuring image is an actual pic taken at the opening scene. Look how inky black the NZ9 goes with the incredibly sharp letters. Definitely has that floating in the room effect. This is the best I have witnessed in my home theater. And again I have had many many projectors here...
Let's take a quick minute to discuss the remote. I am so used to the Sony remotes but will say the JVC is very nice as well. It is easier to see the backlit white on the JVC that's for sure. It is well laid out and has the direct buttons to some of the most needed options. For example Picture Mode, CMD, MPC e-Shift 8K, the Advance Menu, Hide feature and of course gamma and Lens Control are there as well as a couple others. As you can see from the pic it is a nice remote that gets the job done!
3D... So we love doing 3D movies from time to time. I have over 150 movies in 3D! It's great to be able to offer a different movie experience. The NZ9 with its 3000 lumens was just what the doctor ordered. Bright and punchy with amazing depth. Subtitles just seem as if they are floating in front of the screen! I added some images I took through a single lens of the glasses just to show how bright the image looks. For more information on their glasses go here. For information on the 3D Emitter go here. Below are pics of the Emitter which just connects to the back of your projector and a picture of the glasses in a case I found on amazon here.
Thanks to Noah from Audio Video Interiors of Chicago and Chris Deutsch of JVC I got my NZ9 just in time for the Super Bowl. My favorite with the Sony models was how well it rendered colors and of course their motion flow. The NZ9 equally impressed and my guests were more than happy watching the game on it. I didn't get an opportunity to take too many pictures but between making cotton candy and popcorn duties (and drinks) I did manage one. Of course this was a live shot not a still pause. I did include a college playoff image from last year I found I had recorded. Anyway I still love the Picture Mode on Natural and the gamma at 2.4 or 2.6 (just for sports maybe 2.6.) Motion Enhance we set to High and kept Clear Motion Drive on Low. That is a taste and depending on yours it could be on High as well. Colors of the uniforms and helmets were excellent. Close-ups were incredibly revealing. The JVC NZ9 was as good as the best Super Bowl we have seen down here or even slightly better.
World first projector to support high-resolution 8K signal input: 8K60p/4K120p
Light source: BLU-Escent laser
Display resolution: 8192 x 4320 (with 8K/e-shiftX)
Input connectors: HDMI x 2 (48 Gbps/HDCP 2.3)
Output and control connectors: RS-232C (D-sub 9pin) x 1, LAN (RJ-45) x 1, Trigger x 1 (Mini jack), 3D Sync x 1 (Mini-DIN 3pin)
3D formats: Frame Packing, Side-by-Side (Half), and Top & Bottom
JVC proprietary 8K/e-shiftX technology with 4-direction shift reproduces 8K-quality image
Ultra-High Contrast Optics with BLU-Escent laser light source contributes for optical brightness of 3,000 lumens and longevity of 20,000 hours
Multiple Pixel Control image processor accurately reproduces images closer to the original
Infinity:1 Dynamic Contrast Ratio; 100,000:1 Native Contrast Ratio
Cinema Filter (DCI-P3) creates saturated, beautiful images that come to life
Compatible with the two dynamic tone mappings of HDR10+ content and Frame Adapt HDR with Theatre Optimizer*; together, the projector expresses HDR/HDR10+ content at optimum brightness and darkness in each scene as the creator intended.
The projector automatically reproduces HDR10+ content based on the metadata of the producers intentions for each scene.
Frame Adapt HDR with Theatre Optimizer performs tone mapping according to the input signal of the content, as well as the
installation environment and/or usage conditions of the projector.
Installation Mode with 10 memories is ideal for applications such as ultra-wide screen, where multiple aspect ratios are needed. Focus, Zoom, Shift, Pixel Adjust, Anamorphic Scaling and more can be saved independently for each memory.
Compensation accuracy of Clear Motion Drive improved in the periphery of objects. Added with Motion Enhance technology, the projector can reproduce much smoother moving 4K images (function disabled when inputting 4K120p signals).
Low Latency Mode suppresses display delay for faster response when receiving signals from PC and game consoles
Color Management System with 6-axis Matrix
Auto-Calibration Function using an optical sensor** is capable of optimizing essential elements in the image, including color balance, gamma characteristics, color space and color tracking
ISF C3 (Certified Calibration Controls) mode*** to reproduce excellent picture quality optimized for specific environments.
Wireless transmission options for 3D viewing: RF (radio frequency) system transmission with PK-AG3 3D Glasses for 100H continuous operation and PK-EM2 3D Synchro Emitter
*Theater Optimizer can be activated only when the projectors picture mode is set to Frame Adapt HDR. **Exclusive JVC software and optical sensor are required. Please visit the JVC website for details. ***Professional calibration to desired screen is performed by trained dealers
Looking at the above features I can tell you firsthand they equal the performance on my screen. The price for admission with the JVC NZ9 is way under the Sony 1025ES I recently had here. Just yesterday our twins had a movie playdate and they wanted to see the new Ice Age movie on Disney Plus. The image was spectacular! Depending on your budget either of the JVC models will improve your movie watching experience. For those who haven't seen a JVC ever or in a long time be prepared to be shocked. I am planning to hook up my Xbox Series X and PS5 this week for some fun game testing. They will be used with the new McIntosh MX180 which is coming. I guess "8K All the Way" will be the slogan for our theater. So what is next? I have already had a few people asking me what I am doing with this great JVC NZ9 sample here. I can say I am not selling, and it is definitely staying. The razor-sharp image with the deepest black levels (passed the can you see your hand test easily) combined with brilliant color and image depth makes the NZ9 a keeper! Ours has easily found a home on our ceiling. The bar has not only been raised by JVC but has also been reinvented...
JVC NZ9 with Envy Extreme 8K
I need to thank my family for allowing me the time to "work" in the basement. Our twins Mila and Raelynn and baby Dallas do a great job helping me test movies. Jaclyn my Wife and her support is also amazing.
EQUIPMENT USED FOR ALL OR PART OF THIS REVIEW:
JVC NZ9 8K Projector, madVR ENVY Extreme, Stewart Studiotek 144 ST100 16:9, McIntosh MX180, Anthem AVM90, Apple TV 4K 2021, NVIDIA Shield Pro, ROKU Ultimate 2020, Datasat RA7300 Amps X 2, DirecTV 4K, Oppo UDP-203 4K Player, Samsung UBD-K8500 4K Ultra Blu-ray player, Furman Elite-20 PFI, Monster Power HTS 5100, AC INFINITY Component Coolers, Speakers: MARTIN LOGAN ILLUSION Center, IMPRESSIONS (Left and Right), VANQUISH (HEIGHTS & ATMOS & Top), AXIS (Backs), Subwoofers- Martin Logan BalancedForce 212 X 2, Seatcraft Equinox Seating with Sound Shakers, Remote: Harmony 1100, HARMONY ELITE. Cables: Audioquest shorter HDMI cables top to bottom. Audioquest (Cinnamon & Forest) HDMI cables with RuiPro 32 HDMI fiber optical cable...
Tap here to read more about the JVC NZ9.
If you're in or around Oakbrook make sure you stop in and see the guys at Audio Video Interiors of Chicago. Their expertise and product support is second to none!
1S550 Il Rte 83 Unit C,
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181
Like JVC suggest use two people to move or install!
UNDER THE SEA 3D
The potato cod fish 3D demo has
always been my favorite. Many guests have ducked watching it!!!
"The bar has not only been raised by JVC but has also been reinvented..."