nView z115 and OHP Question

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I am new to the DIY projector stuff but i am wanting to try some stuff out.
My first question is, is teh nView z115 a good lcd panel for home theatre use or would the nView spectra C be better? or maybe even another brand. My next question is, from reading posts i have come to teh assumption that the more lumens the better, but most i see are about 2200 lumens, is this sufficient? most of the 5000 lumen OHP's are like $1000. Can any projector produce this amount of lumens if the right bulb is in it? or what? i just dont understand. and if you could make any OHP recomendations or lcd panel recomendations that would be terrific. Also if i take teh stage plate off of the OHP and just set teh LCD on top that would produce better light but get to hot! so what if i route a tube from a window A/C unit to the inside of the OHP? will this work, or be better, or none of the above. thanks Brad :confused:
I use the z115 with a 4000 lumen ohp and the picture is fine, day and night. In the day you have to cover the windows though. As far as your other questions go concerning removing the faceplate, ac hookup, etc, I consider those uneccesary with this setup. The law of diminishing returns starts to kick in. You could buy a nice 7000 lumen projector instead, but the bulbs are $100 a pop.

Check out the page where my projector is documented before you do much.

I have an nView Z115. I traded in a Spectra C for it. The resolution on both is 640x480 on both panels. The Z115 was more expensive and in it's day won lots of high praise from the PC rags as well as the Spectra C. The Z is a little fancier with LCD displays, a quiter fan and a little bit better overall picture quality. I think the key to my system is the OHP. I use an Elmo HP-305A Solar Deluxe. It uses a 575 watt MH bulb and puts out 7300 lumens. These OHPs routinely sell for upwards of $250 on ebay and the replacement bulb is $149, but it's bright! The Z panels can get pretty expensive on ebay also. I live in Atlanta and I drove down to Inventory Solutions and hand picked my Z panel and tried it on my laptop. I also suggest you get a line doubler. You can see my setup at:

For what it's worth, I would get the Z over the C.
I recommend that you look on eBay for a cheap 3M 9700 or 9750. It has a triplet magnifying lense, it's portable, it's 4300 lumens in normal power mode and like 5000 lumens in high power mode (or is it 3500 lumens in normal power and 4300 in high power mode? either way, picture still looks fine). I checked a couple days ago and found 3 of them going for $70 each. If you get the 9700, you can get a zoom lens that'll make your LCD fill your whole screen. I have pictures of my setup, including the 3M 9700 OHP, at http://photos.yahoo.com/cyberlien . Keep in mind, though, I did take those pictures without pausing what was on the screen and I used an old HP C200 digital camera without the flash to take the pictures. The blurryness is motion blur. I'm gonna take some pictures of movies paused in a couple of days.

Replacement lamps are like $13 for the 9700/9750... The bulbs last 100 hours and the projector has a lamp switch, so when one dies out, you can switch to the next one.
Buhl 113

I got a Buhl 113 for around 40 bucks and it is reated at 5500 lumens. work great for my setup (I do not have a web site on this yet. I am using a NView Z-215 on it and it show everything except TV right now, I am waiting to get a TV-4000 next month. This is one that I have not found mentioned on here as yet (the Buhl that is) and it seems pretty reasonable, I found a place that has the bulbs for 10.50 a piece, bulb-source.com, and it will fold up into a compact package so I can take it over to my friends houses if I choose. Hope this helps.

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