How to Choose a Projector: 4 Things to Look At
With so many projectors being sold, how do you choose a projector?
There are several factors for you to consider so you can get the best projector for you. But here are the four main aspects you should focus on.
1 – Check the Brightness
To decide on the brightness to look for, think about these things:
Do you have control over the light?
Projectors work best in dark rooms. But you can’t have a perfectly dark room all the time.
If the room where you’re using the projector has some ambient light, or the curtain is not thick enough to conceal sunlight, choose a projector with a high brightness level.
Are there going to be many people in the room?
If the room is big with a large crowd, you’ll want the images to be bigger.
To make bigger images, you’ll need to place the projector far from the screen. Because of this, you’ll need a projector with high brightness so it can still project good-quality images.
What will you use the projector for?
If you’re going to use the projector to watch videos or for a home theater, the projector doesn’t need to be very bright.
Usually, when watching videos, the room is dark with very minimal ambient light.
On the other hand, if you’re going to use it for business meetings where you always show graphs, diagrams, or other illustrations with details, you’ll need a projector with a high brightness level.
Especially because participants might need some light to take notes or review other materials.
How You Can Tell if it’s Bright Enough.
Brightness is measured by ANSI lumens.
Less than 1000 Lumens: okay for home theater or very dark rooms
1000 – 2000 Lumens: can be used in classrooms or rooms with some light coming in
2000 – 3000 Lumens: can be used in large rooms with a large screen; will do well even with ambient light
3000 – 4000 Lumens: ideal for displaying high-quality images even in large rooms with some light
More than 4000 Lumens: for big environments such as auditoriums, stadium, etc…
2 – Resolution
Resolution is the number of pixels per square inch of an image.
The larger the number of pixels, the better the images you will get.
Through the process of scaling, projectors are compatible with different resolutions. However, somewhere in the process, the image quality can be compromised.
Experts recommend matching the projector’s resolution to the source’s resolution so it doesn’t need to go through scaling anymore.
3 – Projector Aspect Ratio
This refers to the ratio of an image’s width to its height.
These are your options:
4:3 Projectors (computer monitor shape): usually used with a computer for business purposes.
16:9 Projectors (widescreen TV shape): used for home cinemas.
16:10 (commercial widescreen format): used in widescreen projectors.
Almost all projectors are compatible with any aspect ratio.
In the projector menu, you can change the aspect ratio of the images.
But experts suggest not to use an aspect ratio that is not its native aspect ratio because this will distort the image.
The images might look stretched or compressed.
4 – Weight
Having lightweight projectors is not always best.
There are perks to having quite heavy projectors. A good-performance projector weighs heavier.
If you’re after a portable projector that you can easily bring with you, look for a projector that’s less than 2 kgs.
If you intend to use it often in one place but have the option to easily move it, you can look at projectors between 2 and 5 kgs.