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Depends on the model. If you saw a little fan, then there is a fan problem. There might be 3 fans. 2 square ones and one blower fan. Look for plugs with 3 wires(red/white/black or red/yellow/black). Those will lead to the fans from the mainboard. Occasionally the fan will spin but the tachometer lead will stop reporting the fan status and the projector shuts down. To being with I would clean out the projector fans and ducts thoroughly. That may clear up the issue. Otherwise there is a button press sequence to enable the service menu, but you cannot upload new firmware without special optoma software that isnt available. Another possibility is you have failing filter capacitors in the power supply. Be careful poking around under the hood. There is lethal high voltage possibly stored even when unplugged.
It could be 3 things--
1. You need a new cable
2. This is unlikely, but the red segment could be off the colorwheel, but if this was the case the wheel would be way out of balance and the projector would be vibrating like crazy.
3. The "color ramps" or colorwheel index in the hidden factory menu may need to be adjusted.
If you have any video at all and it's only Black and white there is a 99.99% chance that your Color Wheel has lost all of it's glass color filters. You can confirm this by removing the lamp. then look straight into the projector where the lamp was and you should see the color wheel of colored glass segments (Red, Green and blue) I believe you won't see them because they came off of the wheel. Also if you lift up the projector and turn it around in various angles and you will hear the small pieces of broken glass from the color wheel. Unfortunately you will need to take it to an authorized service center for repair. Be prepared to spend upwards of $300 for the repair.
the red is cutting out. white=blue+green+red. without red, you get blu+green, or cyan. if this was an lcd projector, i'd say it's a burnt light filter, the red lcd, or the lcd has come unplugged. but since this is a dlp projector, you have either a dmd board issue or a main board issue. either way, it'll be pricey.
Thank you for your help I visited a Sony retail outlet yesterday and they explained that to obtain sound you have to go through a sound system using the red connection because they is no sound / speakers build into the projector.