Projectors have been competing with televisions for many years. There is no clear answer to the question which device is best for home or office, so it is important to know their pros and cons. The LCD TV screen wins in brightness, noiselessness, independence from lighting. But projectors have their own charm. Even a cheap projector surpasses costly large televisions in image size. Many of them are mobile and do not take up much space. They are harmless to the eyes, allow you to change the image format and create a unique atmosphere of the cinema.
When compiling the review, special attention was paid to:
- Opinions of users and experts
- Value for money
- Technical parameters.
Highlights of BenQ SW921 WXGA:
Brightness of 5000 Lumens
WXGA (1280 x 800) Native Resolution
VGA, RCA Composite, S-Video, 2x HDMI-In
Taiwanese DLP projector will be a worthy choice for both office and home, thanks to a high luminous flux of 5000 lumens, which goes well with a 370-watt lamp and good, although not the best, contrast. In addition, the development of BenQ is equipped in many ways no worse than analogues with a much more sky-high price.
The projector was especially proud of two loudspeakers of 10 watts each. As a rule, the sound does not belong to the strengths of such devices, but BenQ can be safely used without connecting any additional speakers. Like some other stationary models, the projector received a movable lens with universal distortion correction. Therefore, it can be placed above or below the screen and even from the side, which makes watching movies and presentations as convenient as possible for viewers.
Highlights of LG HF80JA CineBeam:
Big Vivid Picture
Up to 120 Inch Screen Size
Vertical and Four Corner Keystone
While most manufacturers do not part with the popular but imperfect LED light source, the South Korean company created a projector using the latest laser-phosphor technology. In addition to instant turn-on and low power consumption, the light source of such a device also has a service life of 20,000 hours, which is five times the time it takes to use analogs. However, this is far from the only advantage of the projector for a home theater, suitable even for use in a full-fledged hall thanks to impressive capabilities.
Powerful DLP device delivers clear Full HD images with a contrast of 150,000 and perfectly conveys all colors and shades. The brightness margin is also good – 2000 lumens is enough even to play high-resolution films in a brightly lit room. At the same time, unlike most home projectors, LG supports Wi-Fi and the parallel use of two USB.
Highlights of Acer C120:
Brightness: 100 ANSI Lumens
Aspect Ratio: 16:9 (native), 4:3
Lamp Life: 20,000 hours (Standard)
Most buyers do not have a budget to buy flagship projectors and prefer balanced solutions to them. Acer C120 is an excellent example of a solid compact projector for multi-purpose use, which in many characteristics is not inferior to the most advanced models.
An impressive lamp life (20,000 hours), as well as a luminous flux of 100 lumens, favoring the model from a Taiwanese company, say that the Acer C120 almost catches up with projectors from the highest price category. We can’t but mention the weight of the model: 180 grams is a worthy indicator even in the segment of ultra-compact solutions. At the same time, the projector can display an image with a diagonal of up to 2.5 meters with a resolution of 854×480 pixels, that is, it is not inferior to competitors in this indicator.
But in order to squeeze the Acer C120 into the middle price segment, the company had to make a number of compromises. For example, there is no way to eliminate keystone distortion. Also, for the sake of size, I had to deprive the projector of a composite input and a VGA connector. But despite all these disadvantages, the Acer C120 is still one of the best compact projectors in terms of price and offered features.
Highlights of Vivitek Qumi Q6-BK:
Easy Touchpad Navigation
Built-in 2 watt audio speaker
Native Support for Popular File Formats
One of the best representatives of TOP compact projectors is becoming a modern model with support for three-dimensional images and Wi-Fi. An elegant device weighing less than half a kilogram with battery power reproduces images with a resolution of 1280×800. Thanks to the excellent aperture value of 1.9, this Vivitek model pleases with good brightness, despite the rather mediocre light output, which reaches 800 lumens.
DLP technology and 30000 contrast provide excellent color reproduction and clarity when playing back a darkened video sequence. At the same time, the projector boasts a universal projection distance of one to three meters and a projection diagonal of up to two and a few meters. Therefore, it is convenient to use it both in a small audience and in a spacious hall. A lens with a focal length of only 15.3 millimeters guarantees the best viewing angle in the category.
Highlights of ViewSonic PRO7827HD:
ISF Certified Color Calibration Tools
PortAll: Discreet Wireless Streaming
True-to-Life Color and RGBRGB Color Wheel
The presence of a huge number of expensive analogues did not prevent Viewsonic from winning first place. Indeed, by most characteristics, the projector is in no way inferior to other representatives of this class, which are many times more expensive. At the same time, Viewsonic is not without additional advantages. In particular, the device supports digital and optical scaling, its lamp will please with a long service life, reaching 3500 hours in standard mode or 6500 in economical.
Contrast is also an order of magnitude higher than average – 22000. Luminous flux of 2200 lumens is also a good indicator, although not the best. Those who want to watch movies without connecting additional audio systems will enjoy the pleasant sound power of 10 watts.
One of the main reasons for Viewsonic getting into the TOP was the variability of image size. The user can easily configure both a small projection with a diagonal of 76 centimeters and a picture up to 7.62 meters.
Highlights of CINEMOOD:
Up to 12-foot projection
Ultralight, portable and durable
Connects to headphones and speakers
Despite the relatively low resolution, the Chinese model confidently enters the TOP of the best, due to ease of use, mobility, a number of add-ons and the ability to work without recharging up to five hours. The projector has a practical cube shape, which allows you to place it as you like and make the screen not only walls, but also the ceiling. Cinemood is useful for both home and travel, but for a good picture you need some dimming.
The projector can be controlled in one motion through the application on a smartphone and even on a smart watch. Support for Bluetooth audio allows you to play songs from any modern mobile device. Internal memory will even allow you to download some files to the projector itself. Cinemood also plays video from flash drives or via Wi-Fi. At the same time, the manufacturer made a pleasant surprise for the smallest viewers: he created a pre-installed collection of popular cartoons.
Highlights of Acer H6517ST:
ExtremeECO Functionality & Protection
The cutting-edge Dust Shield Solution technology
TOP of the best modern projectors for home theater opens the most popular Chinese model with Full HD-resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels. Despite the rather big price, many film enthusiasts choose it because of the brightness and contrast characteristic of many high-quality DLP devices. Since the projector successfully focuses the image both from a half meter and from a distance of just over three meters, it is comfortable to use it in any room. At the same time, it is portable and easy to move.
For its size Acer endowed with good features. Good projection quality is complemented by support for playing 3D movies directly from a USB drive. Also, the projector’s advantage was the presence of two HDMI inputs, which allow you to connect several video sources to it at once and instantly switch between them without fuss with cables and wires.
Highlights of Everycom X7:
Small Size, suitable for travel
Contrast ratio: 1000:1-2000:1
Max resolution: 1920×1080 pixels
A simple Chinese model will be an excellent solution for those who dream of a projector for a home theater, but are not ready to spend their entire salary on it. One of the most inexpensive LCD-type devices deserves the title of the best representative of the budget segment.
Like other affordable projectors, Everycom can offer only a rather modest 800×600 resolution, which, however, is enough to watch popular TV shows and satellite channels.
Surprisingly, the device is even equipped with a TV tuner for that kind of money, so the user can watch live television directly on the projector. A profitable home model also received a card reader and a USB connector. The device is relatively picky about lighting due to a good luminous flux of 1800 lumens. But the contrast, as one would expect, is an order of magnitude lower than that of expensive projectors. Therefore, the dark footage is not reproduced very clearly.
Highlights of NEC NP-U321H:
ECO Mode technology
Vertical Keystone adjustment
Ultra short throw lens (0.25:1 throw ratio)
Lightness and compactness for stationary projectors, as a rule, are not decisive factors, but they have a certain impact on the operation of the device and this should not be forgotten. Efficient small devices are extremely rare in this class, and this model is all the more valuable. After all, it has incorporated the user’s favorite properties: Full HD, support for USB and Ethernet, three-dimensional image, HDTV and much more.
The main difference between NEC and purely Chinese and Taiwanese competitors is considered a reasonable combination of brightness and contrast. Also a characteristic feature of the projector was the projection distance, which is about half a meter. In this regard, NEC will fit particularly well in a miniature room or small office. The disadvantage is only a slightly overpriced, but it is justified by the latest technologies used to combine powerful filling and accurate dimensions.
Highlights of BenQ MW571 DLP:
Eco blank mode
Blu-ray full HD 3D Supported
Lan control with Crestron and pj-link
The popular Taiwanese projector with the best luminous flux of 3200 lumens takes its rightful place in the top three finalists. Unlike most analogues, BenQ not only works relatively quietly, but also has a good 10-watt speaker system. Although she can hardly compete with special audio equipment, for a modern projector this is a very worthy indicator.
Belonging to the DLP type provides excellent detailing of shadows and dark shades. In combination with a contrast ratio of 13000, this gives a fairly clear image, so the projector is universal and suitable not only for the office, but also for a home theater. Despite its small size and portability, BenQ boasts a number of interfaces, including Ethernet, RS-232, USB, video and audio inputs. A good bonus was optical scaling, which allows you to resize images without moving the projector.
Highlights of LG PH450UG:
30,000 Hour LED Lamp Life
Embedded Battery (up to 2.5 hours)
Ultra Short Throw (Project 80” from 13″ away)
Projectors for mobile presentations have existed for a long time, but their problem is to equip a conventional lens, which must be placed either on the ceiling or on a tripod in the middle of the audience. Whether it is the ultra-short-focus device LG PH450UG, which the manufacturer himself calls Minibeam, i.e., a mini-beam. Truly compact and lightweight, weighing only 1 kg, it can be taken with you everywhere and run even in the smallest rooms. To get a diagonal of 80 “, it is enough to move the device only 33 cm from the screen.
To organize viewing, you do not need anything but a light wall and a USB flash drive – no audio system, no cables, no power outlet. All the necessary elements are already built into this baby or can be connected separately wirelessly.
The autonomy of the model reaches 1.5 hours of operation at maximum brightness mode, and when you connect a powerbank of 18 thousand mAh, you can not even think about the duration of the video session. The only negative – the 720 p resolution, which is weak by modern standards, is crossed out by its advantages: compactness, reasonable price, and thoughtful functionality.
Highlights of Canon LV WX320:
Aspect Ratio: 16:10
6th generation Intel Core Ultra HD graphics
Native Resolution: 1280 x 800 (WXGA), 1,024,000 pixels
Good home cinema projectors are extremely rare at affordable prices. Therefore, this representative of the category rightfully takes its place among the best. Despite the relatively low cost, according to many characteristics, Canon is not inferior to competitors, several times superior to it in price.
To enter the TOP-13 he was prevented only by the lack of a Wi-Fi interface. However, the projector is equipped with an Ethernet network adapter, which means that it can be connected to a local network via a cable.
Unlike most mid-range models, Japanese development not only supports 3D, an RS-232 interface and is equipped with a good 10-watt speaker, but it is also mobile. Despite its compactness and light weight, the projector received a movable lens, adjustable vertically, and even vertical and horizontal keystone correction. Such a device is very flexible, it does not have to be placed strictly opposite the screen.
Highlights of Sony VPL-VW600ES:
Built-in Auto-calibration Features
Integrated RF 3D Sync Transmitter
Immersive, vibrant picture for any environment
The best projector for home theater is a unique device that creates the most realistic images in full 4K resolution. Created using the latest LCoS technology, referred to as SXRD, the device offers one of the best contrast ratios, reaching 350,000, and a balanced luminous flux of 1800 lumens. At the same time, the projector has an amazing diagonal run: from one and a half to almost eight meters. Therefore, Sony is what you need to project a high-quality image onto an entire wall.
Unlike most analogues, the model gives the impression of a real movie theater and is suitable for creating digital reality according to the 4K Reality Creation standard. 9 image modes and 11 gamma modes are possible, the projector is equipped with a zoom, a function of motorized lens shift, so it is easy to adjust to any taste and any environment.
How to Choose the Best Projector
Projectors are diverse and can be used in various fields, depending on the characteristics of a particular model. Therefore, before purchasing it is recommended to determine the main tasks of the device and pay attention to the following characteristics:
- Class: Projectors are divided into pocket, ultraportable, portable and stationary. The latter two are characterized by better image quality, a variety of functions and interfaces, and the first – mobility.
- Type of device: Projectors based on LCD and DLP are the most common. The advantages of LCD-devices include stability and realism of the image. DLP projectors are distinguished by the best contrast and deep detail. But some devices of this type are prone to flicker. The most advanced technology is considered LCoS, the only negative of which is the high price.
- Resolution: The higher the resolution, the more detailed and better image.
- Contrast: The most important parameter that determines the quality of colors, halftones and the reproduction of dark scenes.
- Power of a light stream: This characteristic determines the brightness of the image and even the scope of the device. Projectors with a luminous flux of more than 2000 are suitable for offices and other lighted rooms, and slightly less powerful ones are recommended for a home theater with good dimming.
- Focal length: the smaller it is, the better the viewing angle.
- Projection distance: It determines how far from the screen the device should be for an acceptable picture. For spacious rooms, projectors with an indicator of about 3 meters or more are recommended. For the house, especially for small rooms, 1 meter is also suitable.
- Aperture number: the lower the indicator, the brighter the image.
- Noise level.
I hope you have found the best projector for yourself after this tutorial. If you would like to comment, notice that the article content has not been updated in time, or suggest a projector I did not include, please use our contact form to stay in touch.
Have fun and good luck!
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