The 10 Best Video Projectors

Updated May 09, 2018 by Sheila O'Neill

Best High-End
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We spent 44 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. Treat yourself, your family, and your friends to the full cinema experience in the comfort of your own home with one of these stunning video projectors that can deliver an image as big as 300 inches. They work equally well for web content and video games, too. Our list features everything from the highest-quality upscale models to more affordable options for the movie fan on a budget. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best video projector on Amazon.

10. Aaxa P300

The Aaxa P300 is an extremely portable option that weighs less than a pound and can fit in the palm of your hand. It's not as bright as the full-size alternatives, but it still offers crisp HD images and can project up to 120 inches.
  • long-lasting led lamp
  • tripod included
  • difficult to focus
Brand AAXA Technologies
Model KP-600-01
Weight 2.5 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

9. Ragu Z720

If you're looking for a portable option that won't break the bank, the Ragu Z720 is a good choice. It produces a bright, clear picture and is incredibly easy to set up. Plus, it weighs less than three pounds, so it isn't difficult to take it on the go.
  • av and hdmi cables included
  • powerful built-in sound
  • fan can get a bit loud
Brand Ragu
Model Z720
Weight 2.3 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

8. ViewSonic PA503S

The ViewSonic PA503S combines brilliant colors and a high-quality lamp with the flexibility of choosing a model that meets your resolution needs without overspending. The most inexpensive option is SVGA, while on the higher end you can get WXGA.
  • low power consumption
  • eco mode for extending lamp life
  • no stereo output
Brand ViewSonic
Model PA503S
Weight 7.1 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

7. Optoma HD27

The Optoma HD27 features MHL connectivity, which makes it easy to pair with any mobile device. Far brighter than the previous HD26, it also has the latest color profiles to project crisp, modern imagery, with a lamp designed to last ten years.
  • incredible picture quality
  • quick to set up
  • doesn't work well in bright rooms
Brand Optoma
Model HD27
Weight 6.9 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

6. Epson Home Cinema 1060

The Epson Home Cinema 1060 creates bright, rich colors and connects with everything from VGA to USB to HDMI-equipped devices. Since this model produces 3,100 lumens of brightness, the picture quality will look just fine in a fully-lit room, or even outdoors.
  • dynamic contrast ratio
  • no rainbow effect
  • built-in speakers aren't great
Brand Epson
Model HC1060
Weight 8 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

5. Optoma GT1080

Gamers will appreciate the Optoma GT1080 for its lightning-fast response time and bright, vibrant visuals. And since it can create a 100" image from less than four feet away, this model is a great option for people with limited space.
  • srbg display profile
  • long-lasting lamp
  • no picture size adjustments
Brand Optoma
Model GT1080Darbee
Weight 8.4 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

4. BenQ HT3050

The BenQ HT3050 is a great choice for fans of movies and video games alike. It features zero latency technology for immersive gaming and has two HDMI inputs, so you can hook up your Blu-Ray player and a gaming console at the same time.
  • wide variety of component inputs
  • built-in 20-watt speakers
  • cinematic color reproduction
Brand BenQ
Model HT3050
Weight 11.3 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

3. Sony VPL-HW45ES

Serious home theater fans should consider the Sony VPL-HW45ES, which features a high-quality 1080p resolution and smooth, fluid action. It uses the same digital projection technology found in movie theaters to deliver a stunning cinematic experience.
  • extremely quiet fan
  • high contrast ratio
  • factory calibrated settings
Brand Sony
Weight 25.9 pounds
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

2. Acer H6502BD

The Acer H6502BD offers fantastic picture quality at a reasonable price. It has a native resolution of 1080p and its ambient light sensor can automatically adjust the brightness and color saturation levels to create an ideal viewing experience at any time of day.
  • wall-color compensation
  • dlp projection system
  • built-in wireless hd receiver
Brand Acer
Model H6502BD
Weight 8 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. Epson 5040UB

If you're willing to pay a little extra for top-notch image quality, then you can't go wrong with the Epson 5040UB. It features 4K enhancement technology that brings even the smallest details to life for a truly immersive experience.
  • allows for 3d projection
  • powered lens position memory
  • compatible with hdr content
Brand Epson
Model Home Cinema 5040UB
Weight 31.9 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

Making An Amazing Media Room

To take your enjoyment of movies, shows, and console video game play up to the next level, you have to have a dedicated space for viewing or playing. A media room allows you to enjoy the content before you without the distractions of other sounds or sights, from clattering in the kitchen to whatever is walking past the windows. When you step into your media room, you can immerse yourself in the film you are about to watch or the world of the game you will play, and you will ultimately enjoy the experience much more.

If you want to convert an existing space into a media room, the most important consideration is how you will control the lighting. If the room has no windows, or has windows that can easily be darkened with existing blinds and drapes, so much the better. If a room has windows that allow in light, then new window dressing is imperative. You can also consider using blackout window film to fully block light from entering your windows at minimal cost. Window film can usually be installed quickly and with ease, and it is not permanent, so you can always peel it off and use the windows for light and the view again later.

A great media room also needs great audio. If you can afford a surround sound system and added acoustic insulation for the walls, then go ahead and treat yourself to an aural space par excellence. But keep in mind that there are many options for small but powerful speakers that still put out plenty of sound. Better yet, there are many great, compact speakers that are Bluetooth ready, so you don't have to worry about wires or about permanent installation of audio hardware.

And finally, a great media room needs a great television. Rather than spending top dollar on a large TV that will take up space and requires either wall mounting or a media console, consider using a video projector in lieu of a television. All you need is a flat, smooth surface onto which you can project your favorite media to finish off your ideal home media room.

Choosing A Projector For Movie Magic

There is a vast gulf between the price of a top tier video projector and between the most affordable options on the market. In fact, the most expensive, top quality units cost as much as ten times more than their cheapest counterparts, with prices near $1500 on the one end and $150 at the bottom end of the spectrum.

There are two primary differences when it comes to selecting between a high end projector and a lower end mode, and these are light conditions and screen distance. To discuss light first, many of the more expensive projectors can create clear, crisp images with faithful color reproduction even in lighted rooms.

These are great options for use as your everyday television, or for use in classrooms, conference rooms, or anywhere you need to show media or give a presentation where you can't (or don't want to) turn off the lights and shut the windows. Top tier projectors also tend to have a much longer projection distance across which they can maintain crisp images and colors. You can expect to enjoy as much as 2000 lumens of output with these models, and detail as sharp as a 50,000:1 contrast ratio. (The difference between the "darkest dark" and the "brightest white" the projector can create, in basic terms.)

However, one need not think of a projector that costs only a hundred and fifty dollars as an inferior unit, it is simply a machine that meets less exacting standards. If you are setting up a home theater that will be used with the lights turned off and where the screen (or projection surface) is only a dozen feet or so away from the projector, then a lower cost model is the smart choice. There are many affordable video projectors that still create high definition images, boast 1,500 lumens of brightness, and that are fully compatible with all major input types, such as HDMI, USB, and more.

The Video Projector As A Computer Monitor

There are many reasons you might want to consider ditching the traditional computer monitor in favor of a projector, and they start with simple convenience. If you use a laptop as your primary computer, then keeping an external monitor perched on your desk for those times when you need a bigger screen or to use multiple screens can be an annoyance, especially if you have a smaller work (or play) area. When you use a projector in place of a monitor, you can attach the projector to the ceiling or stick it on a shelf out of the way of your daily routine.

A projector allows you to enjoy a much bigger screen than you could hope to find in a traditional monitor, even letting you turn a far wall into your work or gaming screen. Using a larger screen set farther away from you can help to mitigate the eye strain that can come with hours of using a computer. Thus using a video projector as your computer monitor might be good for your health as well as a boon to your gaming or programming experience.

Video projectors are also a great choice for collaborative work. If you regularly work with colleagues on projects, it is much easier for you all to sit back and look at a large screen or wall than to huddle around a single desk.

If you are considering getting a projector to connect to your computer, just make sure to choose one that works well even in bright light. It would be a mistake to limit yourself to seeing your "monitor" properly only when the lights are out and the sunlight blocked.

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Last updated on May 09, 2018 by Sheila O'Neill

Sheila is a writer, cosplayer, and juggler who lives in Southern California. She loves sitting down with a hot cup of tea and coming up with new ideas. In her spare time, Sheila enjoys drawing, listening to podcasts, and describing herself in the third person.

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