The television screen is an ever-expanding thing — literally. These days you can easily find a high quality and reasonably priced 65-inch TV, and some of the best TVs you can buy are also quite reasonably priced. But if you want a true cinematic experience, a projector is the way to go. Projector screens easily reach beyond 120 inches, and some projectors now support 4K UHD resolution and cover impressively wide color gamuts, just like their 4K TV counterparts.
So should you buy a projector? Well, projectors are a bit more complicated than TVs and require a little extra work and consideration. There are five major factors that will determine whether a projector is right for you.
Can you control the light in the room?
The first consideration in deciding if a projector is right for you is room lighting. Projector brightness (or lack thereof) was once an issue that required an entirely dark room, but today’s projectors are brighter and less expensive than ever before. It’s easier to find a model that can handle moderate ambient light or even well-lit rooms thanks to better technology, including screens that reject ambient light.
Still, the darker the room the better the picture quality. When it comes to contrast, a projector needs darkness to make an image that looks bold, not washed out. This will also help make any required color calibration easier. Basements are popular for projectors because they tend to be dark by nature, but you can put a projector in a room with windows so long as you can effectively block out that light, usually with curtains. If you’re willing to put up black-out curtains or shades, nearly any room in your home can work for a projector.
Is there space for a screen?
You are going to need both the space and the means to install a screen. There are a few ways to do this. First you can mount a manual or motorized drop-down screen from your ceiling. You could also mount a fixed screen to your wall, so long as you’re willing to sacrifice the space. Or could paint your wall with a special projection-screen paint.
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