Congratulations to the 2019 Scholarship Winner – Jacob Popielarczyk!

Congratulations to Jacob Popielarczyk, the 2019 Pureland Supply scholarship winner!  Jacob graduated Charleroi Area High School in PA and will enter the Penn Commercial Business/Technical School to learn welding. 

Jacob loves working with metals and machinery and has been interested in welding since the age of 12.  As he describes it, “welding is used all around us and plays a primary role in the manufacturing sector, construction, transportation, maintenance/repair and energy.  It is a specialized skill that serves a wide variety of industries and is used in an immense amount of ways throughout the world.”  

Jacob looks forward to mastering “the precise, challenging and high-tech skill” that is welding.  He says, “There are endless career paths available in welding and advancement opportunities.  I am passionate about the industry and want to learn new and innovative techniques and to further my education upon completion of a certified program at Penn Commercial Business/Technical School and become a member of the Steamfitters or Iron Workers union.”  We congratulate Jacob and wish him the best in his future career!

Welding in only one of the many trades that qualify for the $1000.00 Pureland Supply Scholarship. 

This scholarship is available to students who have been accepted to an accredited trade school, vocational college, technical school or community college for the study of trade, craft, or labor occupations.  Recipients are chosen on their ability to describe how their chosen trade or field plays an important role in today’s world and why this is the path they have chosen.  To apply for the scholarship that will be award on May 1, 2020, visit

https://www.purelandsupply.com/t-scholarship.aspx.

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Is It Time to Replace My Projector Lamp?

After watching Season 8 Episode 3 of the HBO Game of Thrones on my Optoma TH1060, it inspired a question that seems relevant. Is my lamp bright enough to watch videos or is it time to install a new lamp?

My lamp is still coming on so why would I consider replacing it before it actually fails?

Unlike many other types of lamps, a projector lamp will slowly dim as it ages. This is due to the type of technology used to make the lamp function. As I have described in other blogs, these use a ‘Short Arc Mercury Vapor’ technology. In normal people speak, this means there is no filament(small wire that glows to make light). Rather there are two small pieces of tungsten that sustain a small yet powerful spark between the two points. Those points are encased in a small glass tube that you see in the middle of your bulb.

When you sustain a spark, it is called an Arc. hey..that rhymes…

Normally an arc is not going to give off white light. It will be a mix of blue, white, lots of ultraviolet and Infrared light. This sort of light will not make a good picture. It will ruin optics and possibly your eyesight.

To get a more color correct picture, there is a mix of gasses inside that little arc tube. Using a minuscule amount of mercury metal as well as some other gasses, the heat of the arc makes that gas mixture glow with a bright white light with some UV and IR emissions. The UV is blocked by the glass of the lamp lens. The IR is blocked by either an IR block coating on the lamp lens itself (most DLP) or on a built in piece of glass in the projector( most LCD). If the IR is not blocked, it can heat up the components inside the optical path. They will melt or burn and ruin the projector. Fortunately every lamp we sell has its coating checked. That means the only thing left to watch out for is when the tungsten arc points inside the arc tube start to wear apart too far.

On average the tungsten electrodes are 0.8-1.3mm apart. This varies per bulb, per model of bulb or bulb size. On the bulb you will sometimes see this arc gap measurement in the part number. For instance the 280W bulb in my BL-FP280E shows an arc gap of 1.0mm. That gap will grow as the bulb is used. The tungsten starts to wear. Once the arc gap is wide enough, the bulb may not light when asked to. It also may flicker as the arc cannot be held uniformly due to the tungsten points becoming uneven with use.

This is where the lamp life estimations come from. Manufactures measure the light output of their projector until the output drops to a certain level. That level will vary of course and is not published. No matter. The point of this time limit is to make sure you are not trying to see a picture that should be bright enough but isn’t. I have heard claims that they set these time limits to ensure more lamps are sold. That might be partly true but in reality the lamps do lose their original brightness as they age. There are some symptoms to look for that will tell you if the lamp is wearing out besides the brightness. Because really, if you watch it often enough, you will not notice the lamp dim. It happens so slowly over such a long period that it is almost not noticeable. At least until you put the new lamp in and exclaim, “WOW! That is WAY brighter!”.

The first symptom is the lamp taking longer to come on. The lamp should reach full brightness pretty quickly. If the lamp seems like it is taking a few minutes rather than less than a minute to get bright, it might be wearing out.

Another is if the lamp seems to be ‘flickering’. I say flickering in a light-to-dark sense rather than colors flickering around. That is something else entirely for another blog post. The light-to-dark flickering is mostly the arc starting and stopping and then restarting again very quickly. Another cause is the arc ‘walking’ around the arc points. It will leave its optimum position and this will be obvious by the image getting dim and then bright again in less than a second.

More common than you would expect would be the appearance of specs of dust in image. You would think any amount of dust would appear but these projectors are designed to be able to work properly with a moderate amount of dust. This is even true with dust directly on the DLP chip in a DLP or on the LCD panels of an LCD projector. Dust is inevitable in a normal install situation. Manufacturers know that and design the light path to work “around” it. I say “around” because the a new or not highly used lamp will output enough light to flood out the dust so that it is not affecting the image at all. The light is so bright that the dust is invisible in the image.

When a lamp is nearing the end of its life, the light output has dropped to the point to where you may notice bits of dust causing spots on the screen that weren’t there before. While a good cleaning is good to do seasonally, no amount of cleaning will get rid of all dust. There will always be a little. Replacing the lamp with a new lamp should bring back the brightness so that the small amounts of inevitable dust will not show up anymore. This is always my first go-to when I hear about dark spots or ‘water spots'(its been described that way to me). If the visible anomalies are still there after the lamp change, then its something else, but most of the time that is the solution.

Lastly look at the age of the lamp. Manufacturers have all sorts of life-span claims. The average is 2000-3000 hours of use. This isn’t a guarantee of course. There are many variables that come into play such as ambient temperature. How many times the lamp it started per day(schools tend to go through them well under the rates hours). Plus dust buildup inside(lack of cooling shortens lifespans of lamps). Check the lamp time of your unit. If you are 75-85% through the lamps life, the light output is much lower than it was. Keep in mind the old lamp can be a nice backup. Put that new lamp in and put the old one away for a spare.

These days, you can even download a light meter for your smart phone. Take a brightness reading(notice I do not say lumens, that is for another article). It’s arbitrary but that is OK as its for your projector only.

Then in a few months, measure it again using the same image. I prefer a white picture(YouTube has plenty of 10 hour white image vids). You can then start to get an idea of how fast or slow the lamp is wearing out. Once you get to 50% of the brightness it should be pretty obvious and you can put the next new lamp in.

Ideally purchased from us of course!

To break it down into an easy checklist, read below

  1. Is the lamp taking longer than a minute to get to full brightness?
  2. Is the lamp flickering light-to-dark?
  3. Do you see any visual anomalies in the picture that weren’t there a few months ago? Do they look like spots or dark circles?
  4. Does your light meter ap say the image is now 50% of the original brightness?

If your answer yes to any of those, click here, put in your model or lamp number and get a new lamp sent out today!

That way when we head back to Westeros for the rest of season 8 we can actually see what happens in Game of Thrones…

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Did I Buy a Counterfeit Lamp?

How do you tell if this OEM Philips bulb is really an OEM?

There is the cost. Was the lamp 50% less than most of the other listings of the same lamp?

Real DT01291 w/ Original Philips UHP Bulb Inside

Let’s use a Hitachi DT01291 replacement lamp. This is used in over two dozen units across four manufactures(Hitachi, Dukane, Christie, and Infocus). The original bulb is a Philips UHP 330W. This is a higher wattage bulb and not an easy one to substitute.

I purchased one of these half priced lamps myself to see how they could sell it so cheap (well under the cost of the real bulb itself!). After having to wait 2 weeks for the 2-day air shipment I paid for, the lamp arrived. It was stuffed into a USPS box with some paper as padding. Fortunately the lamp was also inside a box with some foam or it would have been damaged.

Bad housing for DT01291

First thing I noticed was the housing. The plastic was cheap looking. There were fingerprints on the lens (big no no) and there was a paper warranty sticker on the seam of the housing. The edges of the housing were sloppy. The mold used was obviously well worn. It was probably from an original lamp and had been discarded and then re-used by the housing company who made this particular housing. I may be wrong but in seeing where they blanked out the OEM name on the side, I suspect I am not. While not terrible or dangerous, having a substandard housing can cause cooling problems and alignment problems with the projector.

Next thing I looked at was the bulb itself. Philips has a very specific set of part numbers/codes used to track their bulbs. Each bulb can be traced back to where it was made and when and even who it was sold to.

Counterfeit Philips bulb
This is a real looking ceramic label, not enough to indicate if it is counterfeit or not.

The ceramic label on the side was the first code I look at. This particular bulb said ‘452/53 330/264W 1.0’ . Under it is the rest of the serial #, date code and manufacturer location code. That in itself looked OK. It wasnt until I turned the bulb over and noticed a piece of info that seemed to contradict the label. There is a serial number printed directly on the reflector. If it was a real Philips 452/53 bulb, the serial number on the bulb would have an aftermarket designation, “AMxxxxx”. This bulb had a new construction serial number. Meaning the bulb was made to be sold inside a new projector rather than a replacement lamp. The serial number as just the numbers without the ‘AM(aftermarket)’ in the front. This made me very suspicious…

The next and most definite place to look is at the arc tube/burner (referred to as burner from here on).

The burner is the glass tube that actually makes the light. This is the part that unscrupulous companies put into used bulbs by clearing out the old burner and cementing in a new burner. They then pass them off as new OEM bulbs.

The OEM burner should have another serial number actually molded into the end of the burner near the tip. You should be able to read it or at least see that its there. If there is no serial number and the bulb is supposed to be an OEM, you can safely believe it to be counterfeit.

Counterfeit Philips 452 bulb
No Serial number was etched/molded into the burner.
All OEM Philips Bulbs have a serial number on the end.

I even went as far as to contact Philips directly and they were able to confirm my findings. The bulb here was sold originally to a real company and was then likely sent back as a recycle bulb. Normally the bulbs are crushed and used to make new glass(it’s good quality glass). In this case the bulb had the old burner removed and new, non-oem burner cemented it.

This is how the company was able to sell what they called an OEM bulb inside for more than half the cost of everyone else.

Being that I can’t confirm they are doing it on purpose, I will not be disclosing their name. It really doesn’t matter as there are many companies doing this. This company just happened to be the one I bought from.

It is up to you as a consumer to make an informed choice. The too-good-to-be-true holds fast here.

If you aren’t sure if the deal you are seeing is worth it, I would recommend calling around. Call us of course (1-800-664-6671) as we can guarantee our lamps are properly made without replaced burners or counterfeit bulbs. The pricing should be within $20-30 or so no matter who you call. If the price is $100 less with one company, you can figure they have a counterfeit lamp and play it safe buying it elsewhere.

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5 ways to Avoid Buying Counterfeit Projector Lamps Online

Counterfeit lamps are a problem for everyone. From the companies who sell them (either willingly or through ignorance) to the end users who end up with damaged or non-functional equipment because of it.

How can you protect your wallet and your projector from counterfeit lamps?

  1. This applies to most things in life. “IF IT SEEMS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE, IT PROBABLY IS” I cannot re-iterate this enough. If you read an advert for a lamp that uses an “OEM Philips UHP Bulb” and the price is significantly less than a comparable listing, then you are probably buying a counterfeit bulb.
  2. Look at the companies reviews with a grain of salt. I notice that some of the more ‘questionable companies’ tend to have five-star glowing reviews all in groups and they all tend to be within a day or 2 of each other. That is followed by no reviews for a week or so and then usually a reasonable amount of negative reviews. Those tend to be people who were duped by the ‘stuffed reviews’ that convinced them to buy the lamp they thought was a good deal. Many of those less than honest companies do this every few months. Sometimes they even change their name and start the dance all over again.
  3. Check the online forums.Make sure they require a confirmed order and that they check the reviews to make sure they legitimate end users. There are other sites like r/hometheater and AVSforum but they should be taken with a grain or five of salt. It’s possible for fake or erroneous reviews to be posted there. Always trust your gut.
  4. Look at the warranty. The longer the warranty, the better most of the time. That said, the long warranty can be a gamble by the company to make it look like they stand behind a great product when in reality they are banking on the chance that if the lamp fails you will forget its under warranty and not exercise your rights. I am slightly biased as our warranty is 6 months but I think that is a reasonable length. If you lamp lasts at least 6 months, the chances of it lasting the rest of it’s rated life-span are very reasonable. It is the “One year” warranties that concern me. If you need to cover your lamp that long, then why? Is it that unstable of a manufacturer that it might fail from a build error in 9 months? These are questions to ask yourself.
  5. How are the listings worded? Do you see “OEM Equivalent” or “Made from OEM parts”? OEM means Original Equipment Manufacturer. OEM Equivalent means its not an Original, but equal to it. That is a curious way to say “compatible”… Listen to that little voice that tells you it doesn’t sound right. Add up the red flags. Way too low of a cost, Way too long of a warranty and tricky wording on their listing. All of this means you would be better off looking elsewhere.

Look no further than our main page. We list over 12,000 items with inventory and each lamps specs clearly listed for your own knowledge.

Check us out here. Purelandsupply.com or call us directly at 1-800-664-6671 where you can speak to a representative who can help you get a real lamp, real fast.

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Is Your Projector Ready for Super Bowl?

I’m sure you can picture this situation. It’s SuperBowl Sunday and that one team you hate and the other team you love are slugging it out. Mostly killing time until the you get to watch the Halftime commercials. Then as the commercial break begins you hear a loud pop and the lamp LED starts flashing as the fan in your projector kicks into over-drive. Your projector briefly sounds like a 747 getting ready to take off.

Your heart sinks as your friends look around confused. You know your lamp has failed and let you and your guests down.

But why?

You just put the projector in 4 years ago.

You barely watch it.
Well maybe you watch it more than barely but you already reset that nag screen telling you to replace the lamp.

Why replace the lamp? Its still working, just reset the nag screen.

These thoughts all run through your head for what seems like an hour when in reality its been less than a minute as the jet engine projector is still whirring its fan to cool down the now failed lamp.

Your projector was designed by some pretty smart folks. The team involved was a group of engineers from multiple disciplines. Software, Mechanical, Electrical, Optical, even Ergonomic engineers all pooled their talents to create a device that was cost effective, feature rich and fulfilling for you, the end user to enjoy for many years.

One of the design aspects is the lamp and lamp control. That lamp is running very hot. It contains what is essentially a constant bolt of lightening inside its quartz envelope. It uses that lightening bolt to excite some gas that creates the light that gives you your images.

Those projector engineers know that the lamp will inevitably wear itself out. The temperature at the center can be over 500 degrees. Your projector works hard and well at keeping that heat manageable, ensuring you get your rated lifespan. The projector even warns you that your lamp is probably been beaten to the point that it needs replacement.

To make this a little more clear, let’s pick a great home theater projector.

The Epson Power lite Home Cinema 3010 is a great home theater projector. While a little more than 6 years old, this unit possesses the specs that make for a good video. 2,200 lumens with a 10,000:1 contrast ratio give you a clear and vibrant image in most if not all home theater rooms. This projector is one that has a rated lamp life of 4,000 hours in standard power mode. That give you the 2,200 lumens. You can save some lamp life if you have an extra dark room by using ECO mode and running the lamp at a lesser power. This will give you around 5,000 hours of use before you need to be concerned about lamp failure, but at a lesser vibrant image. Depending on the install, this may not be a concern.

When the Powerlite 3010 reaches the end of its rated lamp life, it will give you a subtle hint by flashing “Replace the lamp” on the screen. This is not really a suggestion. It is not Epson trying to trick you into buying a new lamp with your first born. It’s really a feature that the team of engineers built in to make sure your projector keeps running properly.

Fortunately for you and them, you can purchase a replacement lamp from Pureland Supply and save a few bucks in the process. Our lamps are designed to replace your original without sacrificing the quality designed into the projector. Our lamps use the same cooling features and bulb specifications as the engineers called for when the projector was made. You can see the ELP-LP68 lamp for sale here.

With the SuperBowl airing next weekend, it is a great time to give your projector a once over and even order a new lamp to make sure you do not end up watching it on your smart phone because the projector is doing its 747 impression for you and your friends.

Order a replacement lamp from PurelandSupply today! Ground shipping is always free and we will ship your order same day if we receive it before 5pm Est.

Call us at 1-800-664-6671 or visit the website at Purelandsupply.com

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Happy Holidays From PurelandSupply.com

We want to take a moment to wish everyone a Happy and Prosperous Holiday for 2018.

This is a great time to remind you to give your projector some much deserved attention with a good cleaning.  Get ready for 2019 with a projector that is ready to perform as you need it to:  Quietly, brightly and without issues.

Here are a few tips for some holiday maintenance.

  1. Clean the outside with a damp cloth.  If your projector is ceiling mounted, there will be dust build-up on top.  That dust can get sucked in and build up in the fans/ducts.
  2.  Unplug the power, remove the lamp and put your wand attachment on a vacuum. Give the lamp a gentle pass with the wand to pull off any surface dust. Then put the wand up inside the lamp well and pull out any dust building up on the surfaces or near the vents inside the lamp well area.  The goal here is to draw out any dust build up in the lamp fans.  You will not likely see those since they send to be inside the projector rather than exposed.
  3.  Run that vacuum with a brushed attachment across all of the vents on the outside of the projector.  That will help remove any build up that is going to be pulled inside. Any dust you remove is possibly another hour of lamp life that wasn’t there before. It can add up.
  4. Re-install the lamp but leave the power unplugged for the last part.  Clean the front of the projector lens with a clean dry cloth or microfiber ideally.  Stay away from solvents or soap cleaners. They can and will damage your lens if used incorrectly.  Use the clean dry cloth in a circular motion to wipe the lens from the center out.  picture a spiral pattern moving outward.  That will prevent smudges and give you the very clean lens.

To everyone and your family, please have a safe and happy holiday season and we hope 2019 is even better!

 

Thank you

PurelandSupply.com

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Can I Buy a Brighter Lamp for My TV or Projector?

One question we get fairly often is,  “Can I buy a brighter lamp for my projector?”  or, “My TV says it’s a 150 watt bulb. Can I buy a 200 watt bulb?”.

The answer is No.  Thanks for reading!

 

Just kidding…

I take that back.  Technically yes, you can buy a 200 watt bulb for your TV but it will definitely not be brighter.  Front Projector and Rear Projection TV lamps are not the same kind of technology as an Incandescent lamp.  When you put a new bulb in your desk lamp and want it brighter you would look for something with higher wattage and you would get brighter light.  If the old bulb was a 75 watt and you screw in a 100 watt you definitely had more light so why not the same thing on a projector lamp?

Projector lamps rely on a dedicated power supply whose only job is to make sure the lamp installed runs at the proper power rating it is designed for.  The projector lamp ‘takes’ power from the power supply. Where as an incandescent lamp ‘takes’ power from the wall socket.  The projector lamps power supply is designed to run and supply the wattage the lamp is designed for.

For example. Your 200 watt Epson Brightlink 435Wi lamp has a power supply that pushes 200 watts of power to the bulb.  If you put in a 300 watt bulb, the power supply is only going to feed 200 watts of power. That bulb will only put out 200 watts worth of light even though the rating is 300 watts. In some cases it may even put out less than 200 watts worth of light…

It is similar to stereo speakers.  If your stereo has 100 watts per channel and you hook up 200 watt speakers, your stereo is not going to be any louder.  You would need a stereo that put out 200 watt per channel to get more volume(not really that much more but this is about projector lamps so I won’t get into logarithmic increases).

This is why you cannot merely purchase a brighter lamp.  Projectors are designed to run with the wattage lamp for all sorts of reasons.  Mostly cost related but also image quality related.  I have seen people who have installed higher output power supplies into projectors to get more brightness and the image looked washed out.  The contrast suffered because the projector was designed for a certain amount of light to be pushed through and exceeding that caused the image to look poor.

Your best bet for having the brightest picture possible is to minimize light pollution in your “theater” room. Blackout curtains, putting black tape over the myriad of things with indicator LEDs.

The most important things are to make sure your projector is clean and your lamp is new.  That will get you the brightest image every time.

Check out Pureland Supply’s whole series of Epson Lamps here!

 

 

 

 

 

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3 Examples of When to Replace Your Lamp and Why…

Owning a projector also means you will inevitably have to replace the lamp.  Many times the lamp will fail in spectacular fashion and leave no question that you need to replace it.  There are plenty of other times that you may need to replace the lamp even though it still seems to work.

You have a picture. That means the lamp is fine, right?

The real answer is a loud maybe.  There are plenty of instances where buying a new lamp before the old one explodes is the prudent (and less expensive ) option.

A projector lamp has a finite lifespan.  They are built with components that consume themselves as the lamp runs.  Once those components are fully consumed the lamp will not light and may even burst.  The best time to replace the lamp is before that happens.  Almost every single projector has an expected lamp life that is designed into the unit by the manufacturer.

The skeptic in me immediately figures the manufacturer does that on purpose to “make you buy a lamp”.  They even build in reminder messages on the screen “REPLACE LAMP” or have the Lamp LED on the projector start blinking after a certain amount of hours have passed.   However, the skeptic in me also decided to see what the lamps look like when they reach that point. My findings humbled me to a degree.

When the manufacturer says the lamp life is 2000 hours in standard mode(we’ll discuss eco mode), it means that the lamp will have consumed most of its materials under normal conditions. They actually want you to replace the lamp before it fully fails.  They found (and I confirmed myself) that when their lamp is used to the 2000 hour mark, the arc-point electrodes have degraded to the point to where the arc is no longer uniform or reliable.  That means your image is as dim as it’s going to be and probably has some flicker to it.  It also means that the arc tube may overheat and burst from the projector trying to ignite a lamp that has reached the end of its useful life.  If the lamp is run past the useful life you are putting your projector at risk for some serious damage.

I personally have seen $30,000 Runco projectors damaged incredibly bad because they ran their $330 lamp an extra 200 hours.  The lamp burst, it sent molten quartz glass into the color wheel and mirrors.  This caused an additional $1000 in repair.  But hey it got them another 200 hours… Had they listened to the manual and replaced the lamp at the warnings appearance, they would have only been out $400 instead of $1400(plus shipping a 80 pound projector).

As skeptical as I am, the evidence shows that while it does seem like a printer ink sort of situation it truly is not.  The lamp timers and lamp replacement indicators really do have a valid reason for warning you to replace the lamp.  When you see the message or you see a flashing light that refers to the lamp life expiring, take this advice and buy a new lamp.  If your old lamp is still working, you can put it away as an emergency spare.  Do not run any lamp until it bursts or I may see your projector and use it as an example in another blog post.

Another lamp replacement indicator is erratic flickering.  Flickering bright to dark(not to be confused with flickering colors).  Let us say you are watching your favorite show and the image seems to act like someone is turning your brightness up and down quickly. This indicates that the bulb is probably close to failing.  The arc inside is changing its shape and brightness because the electrodes have eroded to the point to where they are unable to keep the arc uniform. I mention this aside from the timer because this can happen well before the lamp timer runs out.  If the projector is older, or maybe hasn’t been cleaned internally, the lamp will run hotter and with more wear and tear.   Lamps fail or wear out early from excessive heat.  The fans do their best but if the lamp is running hot or is not being cooled as well as it should, the consumable parts will wear out faster.  Try not to wait for the lamp to burst as I said above.  Once you do go to replace the lamp, give the projector a good cleaning of dust in the vents with a vacuum and maybe some gentle use of canned air.  ExcessiveHeat+Use=Early Failure

 

The third instance where your lamp needs replacement is if you have a built in lamp hour counter module.  Many higher end projectors use a small circuit board on the lamp housing that controls the lamp hours being recorded.  Once that circuit is run to the top hour limit, it may shut the projector down.  They will almost always(I want to say always but I can’t be 100% on that) give you a few hundred hours warning before putting the projector into ‘safety mode’ and not allowing the lamp to run until replaced.   The lamps we sell that use those modules are all tested and verified so that when you install the lamp, your projector will resume proper function for another 1000-3000 hours depending on the model.  Some versions have an Eco mode. This eco mode will allow you to run past the standard hour count as the lamp is run in a lower power mode.  It will not be as bright but it will run longer.  At that point it is a trade off in brightness for lamp life, but depending on your needs, this may be perfectly fine.

You may even want to replace it now if you have a big event coming up and the existing lamp is getting long in the tooth(or short in the arc electrodes). As I mentioned above, you can put that existing lamp in the closet as a spare and you will be amazed at how much brighter a new lamp is.

 

The moral of all of this is do not wait to replace your lamp until it fails if you can help it.  A good replacement lamp from PurelandSupply is now the best value in many years. You can buy a lamp with the same parts as the OEM so that you can expect the same amount of performance.

 

 

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Good Bulb, Bad Bulb, Best Bulb, What Bulb?

Buying a replacement projector lamp should be a very straight forward process.  You find the model number or lamp number and plug it into your search engine of choice and then buy the one that appears.  Anyone who has bought one knows that is not what actually happens.

You end up with a page full of links with prices that can have over a $100 spread of difference in cost.  This can even happen on the same website.  Many sites list a Good, Better and Best option with prices that match.

What is the difference and what bulb should you buy?  These are the two questions I look to answer.  First lets go over what Good, Better, Best and OEM really mean.

The Good lamp is the cheapest.  It is almost always a non-original bulb.  Usually these are made by companies overseas that have older equipment and copy a design with cost in mind over quality.  They are limited by the patents so they use other methods to obtain brightness.  These methods include using Krypton 85 gas where it normally would not be used.  They also tend to have a much lower quality rating over the lifespan.  They tend to fail early and not be as bright.  They are cheap though.  If you only need a few hundred hours then maybe the Good lamp is fine if $25 is your budget.

I mentioned that in this post if you are interested.  These are almost always in a cheaply made housing.  They are sometimes even recycled housings.  A dead lamp will have its bulb removed and new knock-off bulb installed and then re-sold as new.  From the authors point of view, there is no place for these lamps in anyway as there are always reasonably priced options that use more reliable parts but that isn’t the point here.

Keep in mind if you expect the normal 2-3000 hour life-span, the chances are low. Even buying multiple ‘Good lamps’ will end up costing you more in the long term. See my older post here where I explain why.

The “Good’r”, I mean Better lamp can be tricky.  These can be made with Original brand bulbs such as Philips and Osram, but installed in a lower quality housing. The housing is as important as the bulb.  The housing is what makes sure your bulb is properly aligned with the optics.  If the bulb is not aligned, then image may be dim at the least or even melt the internals at the worst.  I personally have seen an NEC that had its iris assembly melted because of a “Better lamp” that had a housing that wasn’t built right.  They also will not have the proper coating on the lens.  I go on about this coating a lot because it is critical for proper color wheel operation. Many of the Better lamps cut corners in places that seem reasonable to the manufacturer, but do not serve the end user very well.

They tend to run in the sub-$100 range, or about 1/3 the cost of an OEM(Original Equipment Manufacturer) lamp.  These can sometimes work just fine.  I have seen “Better” Epson lamps that worked perfectly fine.  The issue I see is that its hit or miss.  There is no consistency in he product lines. You will see these all over Amazon and eBay.  There are some brands that advertise a lot that you will see use terms like DLP in there name. These companies are the ones who tend to use word-soup to ‘inform’ you that you are getting the same lamp as the OEM when in reality you are getting 2 levels down.

In fact these lamps are the ones that I see cause the most problems in the projectors I see. They will have an Osram bulb but the housing will be cheaper and not vented correctly. Then the housing will let the bulb slip and then the bulb melts the internals of the projector.  On average these are about 2/3rd the cost of the Best lamps which means for $40-50 more, the problems would have been avoided.   You spend you money as you see fit, but I strongly advise staying far away from the Better lamps.  At least the cheap lamps will fail before ruining your projector…

The Best lamps are the lamps worth buying if you want to save money over the OEM.  OEM is the top tier cost wise. If you have a high dollar projector and it is under warranty, you may need to buy an OEM lamp when it fails or you may violate your warranty.  I think that is a bad policy but I understand the reasoning.

The Best lamps are as close to OEM as you are going to get without paying OEM prices.  Many time the Best lamps are made the same companies who make the OEM lamps.  They have a deal where once the projector is out of production or our of warranty, they can sell the OEM lamps themselves through non-OEM channels.    These lamps use the same bulb as the OEM and the housing is either exactly the same or has all of the important challenges covered. They use the proper air vent setup and lens coating.  They may also have a heat shield to protect the internals that the Better or Good lamps will not have. Best lamps do not worry about cost as much as quality.  They are always cheaper than OEM. Sometimes they are as much as 60% cheaper, yet they are the same lamp.  As someone who knows what it costs to build a lamp, I also know that OEM’s can cost as much as 300% more than the Best lamps and still be the same thing!

Best lamps are the Best value in my opinion.  They do not cut any of the corners that the Better or Good lamps cut.  They are not overly inflated price-wise and are definitely not lower quality.  In our case, they even have a 6 month(180 day) warranty.  The OEM only has an 80-90 day warranty from the best vendors.

When you inevitably go to purchase a lamp, you will see websites with multiple options. When you do I ask you to go back and read this blog post.  Once you read it, I hope you decide the close those other links and buy one from us, but if you don’t I hope you at least buy what you decide is right for you and do it with the confidence that decided for the right reasons.

Pureland Supply only carries the Best lamps(well we have some OEM) and we only use those with the Original Bulb Inside.  Give us a call or click today and get your projector back to where it was and save some of that money.

 

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Congratulations to Shane Sanders!

Everyone at PurelandSupply.com wants to congratulate Shane Sanders as the recipient of our 2018 Scholarship. Shane graduated from Splendora High School of Montgomery County Texas.

Shane begins Tulsa Welding School in August of this year. Shane has been interested in welding since he was very young. He said,”Welding is the most economical and efficient way to join metals permanently. Nearly everything we use in our daily life is welded or made by equipment that is welded”.

The goal for Shane is to continue to be a productive citizen and help our countrymen understand the importance of supporting US-Made products.  He advocates for the “blue-collar worker”, and says (agreeably so) ,”we are smart, we are driven, and the world needs us”. We congratulate Shane and wish him the best in his future career!

Scholarship Winner

Shane Sanders 2018 Welding is one of the many trades Pureland Supply offers a $1000 scholarship to help fund the education. Please see our 2019 Scholarship application if you are interested HERE.

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