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Thread: Projector bulb replacement question

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    Default Projector bulb replacement question

    Non laser related but, I'm sure some people on here have experience with this. In my banquet hall, built into a lift in the ceiling is a Panasonic D4000u projector. It uses ET-LAD40w bulbs and there are two of them inside the projector.

    I've had to replace them on a couple of occasions now and it's a frustrating process. The problem seems to be that most anything you buy is going to be refurbished and the whole damn industry is a bit of a racquet. I have seen anywhere from $76 to $750 on the price of bulbs. And it's really all over the map. Twin packs for $180. Twin packs for $225, Twin packs for $330, Twin packs for $530, Twin packs for $609. Singles as much as $459. Even Buyquest has a single listed on their website as an OEM for $459 and in the lower right hand corner has Genuine Compatible for $329.

    I've bought a pair that lasted 6-7 months (just out of warranty). I've bought a pair where 1 exploded on it's second use. I've bought a pair that I got about two years out of them. They're supposed to last about 3,000 hours. Some came in a box with a suspicious box that said 2400 hours left on it. And I've paid various prices. A higher price doesn't necessarily mean they lasted.

    Who the heck do you trust????

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    Default

    A few years. It's a $7000 projector.

    Figure we opened in May 2008. Maybe in 2011, I got a "Replace Bulb" message showing up for the first 30 seconds after the projector turns on and that's supposed to happen at 2800 hours. If I remember the history correctly, the first set I ordered lasted about four months and started getting the Replace The Lamp message again. I couldn't figure out who I bought them from so, did a search and ordered some from someplace else. I think I started getting an error light flashing on the projector for one of them after a few weeks. I contacted the company and they replaced them. The second set they sent I think I got a couple years out of. A while ago, I noticed I had the red blinking light indicating a problem with one and ordered another set from another company. They came in two weeks ago. Changed them and used them once and then the second time, it wouldn't turn on and one of the bulbs had blown apart. I contacted the company and they sent me a return shipping label to send them back and will refund my money. No offer to send out another set. I keep putting back in the original bulbs and praying I don't hit the 3000 hour mark during an event while I wait for these sets of bulbs to arrive. But... I need to order another pair and thought I'd post here first.

    The bitch about this is that, the owners of the building are who paid for the projector and AV system here when the building was built. We're the caterer that leases the facility. We don't charge people for AV when they have an event here like so many other facilities do but, the owners don't feel the bulbs are their responsibility and the catering family who I work for doesn't necessarily think they should pay for the bulbs either although they haven't balked too much about it But, I hate to keep blowing their money when I'm the one doing the research and buying them and trying to keep things working around here. I also don't want to over spend and pay $1000 for bulbs either thinking that paying more means they're going to be better.

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    Default

    There are a few shitty chinese lamps that i have come across. I generally only used lamps from makers i recognized, like phillips , osram , the money saved on the cheap ones does not add up in the end. if the projector still eats lamps i would check capacitors on the ballast and/or the caps on the power supply. DLP and sony's failed LCoS would some times have that type of failure.
    One thing you can sometimes do is get only the lamp with out the cartage and just swap the lamp in that.
    Polk SDA SRS, Parasound HCA 3500, Luxman M117, Onkyo 504, 7.62X39, sometimes a ball on a string is the greatest of toys for us nonhuman types. oh and some lasers, lots of lasers

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    Lightbulb

    Heya Chief -

    Quote Originally Posted by Bradfo69 View Post
    A few years....
    One thought (yes, besides cheap knock-off lamps, w/ bad everything / Used, presented-as new, etc..) would be to check the lamp-socket contacts for any corrosion.. If the plating was kinda thin to begin with, then add 'a few years' of operation, even a bit of corrosion / plating-wear will result in poorer contact / hotter running / possible arcing, etc and shorten lamp life / cause explosion, etc.. Yours may be fine, but, I've seen that happen before in one of ours, way back, and it's (poor / corroded lamp-contacts..) the #1 cause of lamp-failures in the 'Scopes, too, so.. Fwiw / just a data-point to check / consider..

    ..If you find them dirty / corroded, replacement would be best, but if you can't source a replacement for that contact-block, cleaning can be done w/ electrical-contact cleaner (which, iirc is butanol or other-such..) and/or a bit of 'CLR' on a swab (be sure to clean any CLR off / dry thouroughly! and/or use a micro-bristle wire brush / acetone to clean, as are usually found in hobby-shops...

    Fwiw..
    j
    ....and armed only with his trusty 21 Zorgawatt KTiOPO4...

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    Brad,

    It could be heat related too. I would make sure the fan filter is clean and check that the fan is not bad or intermittent. With the projector up near the ceiling it would be hard to hear if the fan is making noise/spinning slowly.

    Also vacuum any openings in the case to remove dust, especially if you use a lot of fog/Haze. If your venue allows smoking I would open the projector and do a full cleaning. Use a vacuum and a very soft bristle brush to clean all parts, passages, components. Any restricted air flow can reduce the cooling capacity. Nicotine kills (electronics) - I have had amplifiers that were in a club for only one night and years later they still smell like smoke/nicotine even after a good cleaning.

    Years ago while in college, I worked as the in house electronics tech for a large nightclub. It was a full-time job keeping the intelligent lighting, Mobolazer and the pa/amplification clean. With the doors to the club always propped open, dust was always being sucked into any electronics with a cooling fan. The nicotine (which is very sticky) in the air also got sucked into the gear and makes the dust stick to the PCBs - making a dust and nicotine blanket that keeps the gear warm and toasty.

    I used this to clean the PCBs http://www.techspray.com/p-17-g3-blu...degreaser.aspx

    And, Deoxit is great for cleaning contacts and connections http://www.caig.com/



    BTW, the original bulbs should be fine even after reaching their 3000 hour expected lifetime. Usually bulbs just get dimmer over time, rather than die or explode. Exploding bulbs are usually caused by overheating, or from cheap bulbs with thin/weak spots in the glass. I have 4 projectors and have never had a bulb just die. The dimming is not noticeable over such a long time period until you install new bulbs and see the big difference in brightness.

    Hope you get your bulb issues fixed. I agree that the cheap bulbs cause reliability issues, but cleaning also goes a long ways.
    Last edited by djeric68; 05-04-2015 at 05:45.
    Eric in New Orleans

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    Default

    Thanks!

    I will definitely see about cleaning the contact points. That's a bit tricky on top of a 12 ' ladder and when they're buried deep inside the projector but, I'll see what I can do. No, we don't allow smoking but, I do use haze for the laser shows and once in a very rare while a little fog. I also clean the filters pretty regularly.

    I'm going to call Gary's suggestion today and discuss it with them. That's a pretty low price as compared to some others I've seen which makes me a bit nervous but, maybe some open dialogue as opposed to just placing an order may go a long way.

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    The reason the lamps lose there output is the electrodes eventually "wear" away and redeposit on the inner wall of the arc bulb, they darken, overheat distort and eventually fail. That can result in the lamp failing to strike, go out, or just explode. These UHP lamps operate at a very high pressure.
    I do see name brand lamps operate past the recommended life span, some times you can reset the nag window that pops up telling you to replace the lamp, some times it's nothing more then the hour count that the unit has been on.

    I love Deoxit as well, that stuff is great! Just go easy, a little goes a long way. don't want red fluid collecting more dust or dripping on customers...
    Polk SDA SRS, Parasound HCA 3500, Luxman M117, Onkyo 504, 7.62X39, sometimes a ball on a string is the greatest of toys for us nonhuman types. oh and some lasers, lots of lasers

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