What is a projector?
projector may be best thought of as an inverted camera, spitting light out of a lens rather than receiving it. Benefits of projectors over TV include:
Larger image sizes
Flexible installation possibilities
Can I rely on a projector’s built-in speakers?
Projectors, much like TVs, aren’t built to deliver great sound; often limited to 1-watt or 3-watt speakers, which won’t cut it in most situations. In general, investment in a separate sound system-even portable computer speakers-is recommended. If you do need the convenience of an all-in-one solution, opt for a project that has at least a 10-watt speaker.
Types of Projector
The lamp projector has been around for decades and has consistently undergone new innovations such as brighter light and increased life span. However, lifespans for much of its history were measured in hundreds of hours; it wasn’t until the last 10 years or so that we began to see 1000+ hour projection lamps.
Along with the evolution of the lamps, the need to accomplish higher and higher lumen output led to the introduction of dual-lamp systems. This achieved the desired effect, but also increased the ongoing maintenance costs to keep the unit functioning.
More recent projector releases now boast lamp lifespans of 5,000 hours and even a 10,000-hour estimated lifespan if the projector is run in its “Eco” mode, which reduces lamp output for the benefit of longevity. With numbers like this, I’m hard-pressed to say that lamp-based projector is anywhere close to going away.
So where would one choose lamp-based over a solid-state solution? The easy answer is that lamp projectors are best for those who are only utilizing projection intermittently, such as a movie night once a month, or a couple times a week in a classroom. One could easily argue that churches, particularly small churches without a lot happening during the week, could still find a valuable use-case in the now lower cost lamp projectors.
Until fairly recently, most LED-driven projectors have not provided impressive numbers: low lumen output, low quality imaging chips producing less desirable imagery, and a lot of overseas, off-brand manufacturers flooding the market with substandard products have left a lot of consumers wary, and for good reason.
As with laser engines, the typically more affordable LED projectors may boast 20,000 hours or more of operation and virtually no maintenance (most still have filters that require cleaning at recommended intervals). These projectors can greatly aid those who have projectors installed in hard to reach locations or who use their projector every day and hence would burn through a lamp at a faster pace.
Projectors are widely available, affordable, and practical for a variety of uses, from business and education to home theater, gaming, and general home entertainment.