Update - my original post read this as a 12,000: 1 contrast ratio - just re-read the specs, and it's 1,200 to one which is more in line with projectors from a few years ago.
Certainly not bad for a budget projector with a fair amount of placement flexibility!
In that same price range, I'd expect the Mistubishi HD 1000U to look better, but at the expense of placement flexibility and being DLP, a possible rainbow issue.
I currently use a Hitachi PJTX100 and purchased it shortly after it was named LCD projector of the year by Secrets. I am using a 40 red color correction lens and have its RGB settings adjusted to match the settings used by Steve Smallcombe as detailed in the Secrets review. Placement flexibility is a big win with this projector.
I have noticed problems with the bulb output decreasing and reducing the contrast now that I've got 1200 hours on it. I am planning to re-calibrate tomorrow night. You'd probably want to re-calibrate every 200 or 300 hours. Although I suspect that's probably the case with many projectors.