Optoma HD70 Color Wheel Trouble

I was watching an old episode of Dexter the other day (I know, I’m late to the party) and my projector (an Optoma HD70) image became an off color for just a second, but most alarmingly started to make a terrible buzzing/whirring/grinding noise, almost like a bad computer fan.

There are a couple of high volume brushless DC (computer) fans inside there, so I knew it was possible that one had thrown a vane. Since the HD-70 is a DLP projector it uses a complex set of mirrors to reflect the image through a color wheel in order to get the correct colors displayed in the image. The color wheel in the HD70 is seven segments. I believe that it is ordered red, green blue, white, red, grean, blue. When I heard the noise I shut the projector down as quickly as I could, and the color shift that appeared along with the noise only lasted a split second. For this reason I think that my color wheel simply lost its white (or clear, if you prefer) segment. When I pick the projector up and move it around I can hear a piece of what sounds like glass moving around.

When I bought my projector it needed a new lamp and a thorough cleaning inside. I got a great deal on it, so that was no problem, and I ventured inside the box to get it all taken care of. I am completely comfortable opening the case and working on the internals. What concerned me was that no matter how hard I Googled I couldn’t find anyone selling a replacement color wheel. I even found the Optoma part number for it (70.85S22GR01, by the way), but even searching for that yielded few results. I have one hit from Alibaba, which has been an unreliable source for me in the past (and often requires that you order 10-100 of something you only need one of) and one for a website that I had never heard of that wanted $300 for the color wheel. If I was going to have to pay $300 I was planning to upgrade to a new 1080p projector (HD80/22/33, something along those lines). Sure, it would have cost a lot more, but this projector is outdated now, even though the image quality and reliability are both excellent.

My next resort was this thread (second page) on AVSForum, where someone had kindly posted a phone number and quote from Optoma. Sadly, that number didn’t work for me, disconnected. So as my last resort (before pinching pennies for a new/used machine) was to call Optoma. I’ve never had good luck getting companies to sell my internal non-user serviceable parts directly, nor have I had luck with ordering parts for out of warranty/support machines, but the projector gods were on my side today. Optoma sold me a new color wheel for $50 plus about $12 to ship it (FedEx Ground) to me. I tried just about every number on their contact us page, and finally got to a message that said ‘for out of warranty machines please call (888) 942-2929, and that is what I did. No lies, no weirdness (the lady wasn’t very nice, at all), and I got my part. Once it arrives I may post some instructions/pictures of the replacement process.

  • J

    Thank you for including the contact info for Optoma replacement parts. It’s amazing this simple info has been this difficult to find. A simple 5 minute call and I have a replacement color wheel for a GT720 on the way. $35 fro the part, $12 to ship it. I first needed a replacement lens for one that meltd internally, I too found what looks like it would work on DHGATE or something, $68 with shipping from China. The Optoma parts number you provided said $109 for the optical engine. Although it costs a tiny bit more, and all I really need is the lens, at least there’s a return option, 15% restock fee. No hassles, simple to place the order. There must be a search syntax that would help Google provide results other than liks to unanswewd posts looking for the same answer you are. I even tried justanswer, where “18 Optoma technicians”, were availabe to answer my question… inquiring about replacement parts for a melted lens internal to the device, provided expert tech results like… the user manual, product data sheet, list of available accesso
    ries, and an RS232 configuration guide. The “tech” must have really wanted to believe the info I needed would be there, if ony I clicked the pasted link to Optoma website differently the fifth time he responded with the same useless info.

    Anyway, Thanks for providing useful info! Much appreciated!!

    • Glad I was able to help. Took me an extra 2 minutes to write up a blog post so that others could find the info. I try to do the same with all of the things that I’m not able to find a quick answer to. I’ve always found JustAnswer to be a complete rip-off.Optoma is awesome, though. Feel free to send a link to the article via Twitter to @OptomaUSA.

      Again, glad I could help. Thanks for leaving a comment!

      • Phil Myweenie

        I have the HD70 I would like to sell. Has very few hours I am a senior, anyway it needs a color wheel, if anyone here is interested. bjl348@outlook.com

  • Dave

    Ezra – Thanks for posting this very helpful info. Unfortunately, Optoma CS (very nice, BTW) now says that they are sold out on these and will not be restocking as HD70 is “end of life” i.e. discontinued.

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