Epson 5040UB Review

Overall Impression

The 5040UB Epson is a projector that is above and beyond what you will get from other projectors in the same price range. The fully mechanical lens makes the set up for the projector easy. The projector supports HDR, WCG, and UHD, so you have the tools you need to enjoy the projector now and know that you will have a projector that is going to be compatible with future changes in technology.

Watching Blu-ray content or content in 4K is stunning on the Epson 5040UB. We do recommend that you perform calibration on the machine. The factory settings are good but not optimal for a great home theater experience. 

PROS

  • Bright
  • Accurate image once calibration is complete
  • Ultra HD support
  • 16 piece motorized lens

CONS

  • Less than stellar 3D mode and HDR
  • The projector does not automatically switch picture mode based on the content

Specifications

  • Manufactured by: Epson
  • Lumens: 2,500
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080
  • 3D support
  • Size: 20.5 x 17.7 x 7.6”
  • Weight: 24.3 pounds
  • Inputs: 1X HDMI 2.0, HDMI 1.4, Ethernet, USB, DSub, RS-232 

Epson 5040UB Review

If you are looking for a projector that offers unbelievable quality at a price that will not break the bank, we recommend taking a look at the Epson Home Cinema 5040UB. It is equipped with three 1080P LCD chips as well as Epson’s proprietary pixel shifting technology that allows for 4K enhancement. This means that when you look at the quality of the picture on the screen, you are going to see something that is closer to 4K than it is to 1080P.  See related - true 4k projectors

Epson 5040UB

The Epson Home Cinema 5040UB gives you superior resolution at an affordable price. Its compatibility with the 4K content that is currently being produced is another plus, allowing it to continue to be of use in years to come.

16 Piece 2.1 X Zoom Lens

A feature that should catch your eye is the all glass, 2.1 X zoom, and 16 piece lens. This lens has been specifically designed to provide you with 4K-like performance. The lens is equipped with motorized zoom. It is able to provide focus, shift, and a shift range that is unparalleled for a projector at this price point.

The motorized lens coupled with the Lens Memory technology lets the user save up to 10 preset lens positions. This way, a user can adjust all of the settings with just one command. 

Lumens - Bright Enough for Big Rooms or Gaming

The 5040UB offers users HDR compatibility. You will be able to enjoy rich full colors thanks its ability to show DCI color spaces as well as sRGB color. According to Epson, this projector is going to give you 2500 lm.

Here we are talking about color brightness and weight brightness. However, this number is deceptive in that it underestimates the full potential of the projector. 

True, you will get 2500 lm in Video Optimized calibration. However, if you push this projector to its brightest mode, you can expect up to 3500 lm. This means that this projector will work great in a wider range of lighting situations. It’s powerful enough to function in a room that has ambient lighting. However, thanks to the HDR support, you can have a stellar image in a dark theater-like environment.

This makes it a great candidate for home theater setups. see more home theater projectors here. 

See the Specs

  • Lamp Life: 3,500 hours / 5,000 hours (eco)
  • Lamp Type: UHE
  • Lamp Wattage:250 Watts
  • Lamp Quantity:1
  • Lamp Code: V13H010L89 

Picture Quality

The Epson 5040UB stands out from the competition when it comes to picture quality. It is truly in a league of its own in this price point. Some of the benefits it offers include: 

  • A wide color gamut
  • Refined colors
  • Sharp detailed images
  • A high contrast
  • Deep blacks

All of these benefits are noticed even before you use the 4K enhancements or HDR support, which take your viewing experience to another level. The depth of the colors, the contrast, and the blacks gives the image projected by this projector a sense of depth as if it has a quasi-three-dimensional quality. 

You’ll notice that the color is accurate regardless of the color mode that you are using. The one exception to that is dynamic mode. When the projector is using dynamic mode, you are going to see a bias for green, something that is common in most projectors when they are on their brightest mode. We recommend that you try the black and white cinema mode. This has been designed to provide the user with a 5500 degree color temperature. The idea is to re-create the look of black and white films that were shown in movie theaters in the 1940’s

See the Specs

  • Brightness:2,500 Lumens
  • Color Brightness:2,500 Lumens CLO
  • Contrast:1,000,000:1

The images projected by the 5040UB have a sharpness to them that may surprise you. You get the sharpness, even though you’re using 1080 P because of the high contrast ratio offered by this projector as well as from the video processing. An example of this is the Epson Super Resolution feature. When you use this feature, even without adjusting its settings, you’re going to notice that certain details are enhanced, making the image look sharper and giving it a crispness that’s not always present with other projectors. This kind of picture quality surpasses what you'd expect on even the best hd projectors

We have mentioned the 16 piece glass lens. This unique design increases the sharpness and detail of the projected image. Its design allows it to retain a high level of detail. This is true whether or not the 4K enhancement is being used. It is seen even more so when the 4K enhancement is turned off.

See the Specs

Video Modes: 720p, 1080i, 1080p/60, 1080p/24, 1080p/30, 1080p/50, 2160p/60, 576i, 576p, 480p, 480i 

4K Enhancement

The reason why the 4K enhancement looks so nice on the 5040UB has to do with the amount of detail the human eye is able to capture. The pixel shifting enhancement boosts the perceived resolution of the picture to a point where it comes close to the maximum that a person can perceive. There are a few factors that need to be considered, of course. One of them is how close the viewer is sitting in relation to the screen. The other is what is being projected on the screen.

For example, if high-resolution graphics or text documents are being displayed, you will be able to notice the difference between the 4K enhancement and a native 4K projector. 

3D Video and HDR

The 3D feature is a nice touch, but we do not feel it is the strongest point of the projector. You can only use 3-D when you’re in the 1080P mode. You will need to use RF glasses. We found the image to be comparable to what you would see in 1080P if you were in 2-D mode. There are not a lot noticeable motion related artifacts when you are in 3D mode. There is a slight amount of cross talk between the clips, but it is not noticeable to the point where it will diminish your viewing experience.

See related - best 3d projectors

See the Specs

3D Glasses Type: Shutter 

The HDR feature faces the same limitations on the 5040UB that you see on most projectors. Ambient light diminishes the quality of darker shades and this impacts the effect of HDR. As long as lighting circumstances are taken into consideration, we feel that the 5040UB’s HDR feature is adequate.

Areas for Improvement

The Epson 5040UB is a great projector.

However, as with any product, there is some room for improvement. One source of frustration is not being able to shift between HDR and SDR modes. When we initially set up our unit, there was some misalignment. The menu system allows one to correct this. Any 3 LCD projector is going to have this problem.

You may notice judder artifacts as well as stuttering when the projector is showing panning shots. It does not happen all the time. However, if you are very particular about video, you’re going to notice it when it does happen. The average consumer will probably not blink an eye at it. It is definitely not bad enough to cause us to not recommend this projector.

We would like to see them improve the range of the remote. You have to point the remote right at the projector. It’s not the end of the world, but it’s a little annoying. In the future, it would be nice to see a Bluetooth remote that allows us to make the adjustments needed regardless of where the remote is pointed.

Our Final Word - We Like It 

The Epson 5040UB surpassed our expectations. We do recommend calibration to get the most out of your projector. The ultra HD and Blu-ray content you play on this projector will look amazing. For this price range, the projector is powerful and has power to spare. The motorized lens makes setting the projector up a breeze. It's also a top notch choice for a high quality gaming projector

This is an awesome projector for cinema. But the pixel shifter technology makes playing video games, especially those with 1080P graphics, amazingly sharp.

What you think? Have you tried the Epson 5040UB? Tell us what you think about it in the comment section below. 

Reference

My name is Steve Scott. Father of 2 and owner of Outdoor Movie HQ. I’ve been involved in the A/V industry for most of my life and built this blog to help people better understand projector technology. Please leave a comment if you have any questions.

5/5 (1 Review)