While the flickering film reel is a thing of the past, a good projector can turn any room into a little slice of home cinema heaven. But with so many to choose from, each with its own complexities, it can be difficult deciding which is best for you.
So sit comfortably and grab some popcorn – we’ll guide you through it.
What kind of projector should you get?
Let’s start by breaking down the different kinds of projector. Most will be one of two varieties: DLP (Digital Light Processor) and LCD (Liquid Crystal Display).
LCD projectors use three liquid crystal displays – each of which handles a primary colour – to project three images tinted red, green, and blue. These images are then recombined in a glass prism to show the full colour spectrum, before being beamed onto the big screen.
4K or Full HD: What resolution should you get?
While buying a HD television nowadays is a little passé, a Full HD projector is still a good choice – especially if you want to try and keep costs down. There are a number of good choices, but our favourite at the budget end remains the £600 Epson EH-TW5350.
But if your budget can stretch to it, there are a number of ways of getting an Ultra HD 4K picture (which is four times the resolution of HD).
Newer projectors (which hit the £2000-and-under price tag) often come with Texas Instrument DLP chips. These aren’t natively 4K, but rather have resolutions of 4.15 million pixels – half that of Ultra HD’s 8 million. Through a form of pixel shifting, which rapidly fires two lower-resolution images at the screen to create a higher resolution image, the projectors can call themselves 4K– and get certification from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) in the USA.
By Adam Smith
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