Which projector is better to choose for home theater
A crisp popcorn bucket, a glass of cold cola and a ticket in your hand - a standard set of a happy movie theater visitor looking forward to watching a good movie. If you want to be able to experience such emotions without leaving your home, you need to know how to choose a projector for a home theater, because it will help to convey the unique atmosphere from going to the movies.
In addition, during home viewing, you will not only get rid of extraneous noise that is necessarily present in the hall, but you will also be able to fully control the course of the session by clicking on the “pause” at any time.
Table of Contents
- 1 Why a projector?
- ; _ _ _;
- 8 arrays Presence of necessary functional connectors
- 8.1 Video: Acer
projector overview Pochth the projector?
Modern TVs with an impressive diagonal, allow you to get great picture quality. Why then do you need a projector for home theater? There are a number of reasons for this, which are listed below:
Projectors allow you to get absolutely any screen size: you want the whole wall?- you are welcome! It is not a secret for anyone that a modern film with its set of special effects can fully “open up” only on the big screen.
Ability to hide equipment when not needed
Modern projectors are perfectly mounted under the ceiling, or in a niche specially reserved for them, due to which the viewer will not even notice the presence of the device. In addition, the image is projected on a special screen, which is easily folded when necessary, freeing up the room for other needs. This is especially true when there is no opportunity to take a separate room for home theater, and you have to arrange it, for example, in the living room.
Lack of eyestrain
Users who managed to use the projector in their practice, unanimously assert that when watching movies in this way their eyesight hardly strains, their eyes do not hurt, and there is no discomfort( as is the case with a large TV).Of course, for this you need to know how to correctly select the projector, which we will discuss in the next chapter of the article.
In addition, projectors are very easy to fit into any interior. In fact, they do not affect it, which cannot be said about the overall plasma or LCD panel.
Here is a list of the main criteria that help you make a thoughtful choice of a projector for a home theater.
It makes no sense to go over to considering the main characteristics of a home theater projector before you comprehend how it works. Without going into complex technical terminology, the projector device can be explained as follows: in its far corner a powerful lamp is installed, the light from which overcomes the system of elements( color filters, lenses, etc.) and enters the screen, from which it reflects and forms an image. Depending on the elements located on the path of the light flux, the projectors are divided into two types:
- LCD( liquid crystal) projectors. They use a combination of three mirrors that divide the light into three primary colors( blue, green, and red), which, after passing through a prism, are assembled into a finished full-color image. The technology allows you to get millions of shades, each of which has a high brightness( this makes it possible to watch movies with incomplete darkness).In addition, the LCD projector for home theater produces several times less noise and heat than the DLP, and does not create a "rainbow" effect on the images.
The disadvantage of technology can be considered distinguishable pixels in the picture, the need for constant cleaning of the filter and a lower level of black in the image( which affects the contrast).
- DLP( micromirror) projectors. The formation of the image on the screen is due to the use of a huge number of microscopic mirrors installed directly on the surface of the chip that generates signals. Due to the maximum location of each mirror from each other( at a distance of less than a micron), it is possible to get a clear and incredibly “smooth” image( without distinguishable individual pixels).Projectors of this type are much lighter and smaller than their LCD “brothers”, as well as less demanding for maintenance. However, they also have a number of drawbacks, such as relatively high noise, the need for a high level of brightness for working in rooms with good lighting, as well as the creation of a “rainbow” effect around objects on the projected images.
To decide which technology will suit you personally, do not hesitate and look at the "live" demonstration of the operation of both types of devices. Manufacturers provide such an opportunity in showrooms at home appliances stores. This is done because most of the significant differences between the two types of projectors remain out of our focus and have little effect on image quality( the very principle of image construction, lens focal length, etc.), and some subjective “little things”( does the user seeflicker, or not, whether its noise is embarrassing from the work of the projector or not, etc.) come to the fore.
Minimum distance to the screen
Standard home theater projectors require 3-4 meters to the screen for the image to be clear and focused. But what to do if the room where you plan to install it, does not allow you to select the desired distance? The solution to this problem in creating a home theater will be short-focus projectors. They can be placed at a distance of 1.5 meters from the screen.
It would be even better to choose a projector capable of changing the focal length of its optical system. In this case, it is not necessary to guess and calculate the dimensions of the room by centimeters, it will be enough to install the device and adjust it on the spot.
You don’t have to worry about the maximum distance to the screen: the farther the device is, the larger each pixel and the whole image will be( and at the same time dimmer, but the projector’s good brightness will help to cope with this problem, as we’ll describe below).
The brightness( intensity) of the light flux.
The brightness of the projector you plan to choose depends on the lighting conditions in the room where you plan to install it: the more darkness( preferably full) you can achieve, the lower the brightness will be needed to form a high-quality image. So, if you plan to watch movies only in the evening, or with tightly closed windows, it will be enough 800-1200 lumens( units of measurement of brightness).Even the cheapest home theater projectors can produce this value.
The situation is different with watching movies in the daytime, or when the room is not completely darkened( transparent curtains, light from the corridor, etc.).To form a rich, clear and pleasant image for perception in such conditions, you will need 2000-3000 lumens. In addition, such a “powerful” projector will be able to provide sufficient brightness for projecting a 3D image, which through special glasses will not be either “flat” or blurry and dim.
Try to choose a model in which you can adjust the intensity of the light flux. This will allow to “slow down” in the absence of the need for a particularly bright picture, so as not to overload the lamp( increasing its service life) and facilitate the work of the cooling system.
Contrast projected image
The next most important indicator of the quality of the projector is the contrast of the projected image. Unlike TVs, where it is possible to create a rich black color, the projector is not able to generate it, since the black glow just does not exist. Thus, the light areas of the picture on the screen are the result of the direction of the directed rays of light, and the dark ones are their total absence. And it is not difficult to guess that the higher the intensity of the light flux will be, and the more concentrated it is, the higher will be the contrast of the image.
How do manufacturers manage to direct the light so accurately? For this purpose, special diaphragms, complex electronic filter control systems, through which the light passes with a constantly changing intensity, are used.
This parameter is measured in different ways, but the most common is: “the brightness of the lightest area: the brightness of the area without light”( “1000: 1”, “2000: 1”, etc.).The higher this indicator, the greater the saturation and “depth” the picture will have. But do not be fooled by numbers like 100,000: 1, which is nothing more than a thoughtful advertising gimmick.
Whatever you choose to choose a projector, its entire ability to provide high contrast will be reduced to zero if light from an external source penetrates the room where it will be installed( it will simply light up the picture).
Physical lens shift, distortion correction
It’s good if you are able to install a projector directly in front of the screen when organizing a home theater. But what to do if a chandelier or another element of the interior appears on the “path” of the light flux? And if you want to hide the projector from the eyes, setting it in a special niche in the corner of the room?
The manufacturers took into account the possibility of getting out of this position by physically shifting the lens. It will allow you to shift the image on the screen without turning the projector. If you are familiar with the basics of geometry and have spatial thinking, then you will quickly realize that such “movements” of the picture will inevitably lead to its distortion( they will turn it from a rectangle into a trapezoid).
Keystone distortion significantly reduces image quality, since it "smears" and stretches all the objects on it, detrimentally affecting its contrast. In order to prevent such defects in the picture, the projector must be able to correct the distortion by changing the position of individual lenses. The user will not have to figure out how the complex optical system is arranged: to eliminate this drawback, it will be enough to use the remote control.
Image resolution and matrix format
When purchasing a home theater projector, try to determine in advance what video resolution you plan to watch on it. If the main “repertoire” of a home cinema will consist of high-quality films( Full HD, HDTV with resolutions of 1920x1080 and 1280x720 respectively), you will need a projector capable of matching it. Models with lower resolution will not be able to unleash the full potential of the video stream.
However, when acquiring a high-resolution projector, you should not hope that it will magically improve the quality of the video, turning it into “Full HD” from the low-end “320x240”( both values are given as an example).
The next parameter to which you need to pay attention, trying to organize a home theater - what format( aspect ratio) has a projector matrix. There are two main common video formats: 4: 3 and 16: 9.It is recommended to choose a model with a “wide”( 16: 9) format, since most modern films are shot just for it. In addition, if you decide to use the projector not only for a home theater, but also as a regular TV, please note that satellite( and cable TV as well) today also switches to 16: 9 format.
Availability of the necessary functional connectors
Modern projectors used to create a home cinema should be able to process and turn into a picture all the video signal formats used today. This result can be achieved only if the device has a whole set of inputs:
- Digital( HDMI, DVI, USB);
- Analog( RCA( "tulip"), VGA, SCART, S-Video, "antenna" input).
It’s good if each connector is duplicated by a “twin”, which will allow you to connect several signal sources at once, and only then choose which one to consider as the main one. This can be useful if you plan to install the projector in a closed niche, and access to it will be associated with certain difficulties.
As you can see, there is no “universal” home theater projector, which is suitable in all cases. It is necessary to clearly understand why you plan to install it and in what conditions you will use it. Much depends on your personal preferences, which is impossible to determine without the personal "test" of the projector.