A guide to multimedia projectors

Posted on January 12, 2010 by Frankye Robinson
Shopping for a new multimedia projector? Choosing the right style depends on a few factor:
Where will you use your projector?
How big is the projection area? 
Which projector technology best suits you needs and budget?
This guide will define some technical terms and help you narrow down your options.

Multimedia Projector Venue

The most important multimedia projector feature is lumens. Lumens refers to how bright the projected image is. The higher the lumens, the better the visibility and the further away the projected image can be seen.

3M Pocket Projector

Portable Projectors
Up to 3,000 Lumens

LCD Epson Projector

Classroom/Conference Room Projectors
3,000 - 4,000 Lumens

Large Venue Epson LCD Projecto

Large Venue Projectors
4,000+ Lumens

Multimedia Projector Image Size

Just like the screen on your televisions and computers, projector image size is measured on the diagonal, from one corner to the other. Once you know how big the projection needs to be, there are two other dimensions to consider: resolution and through size.

Multimedia Projector Resolution

The resolution of the original image determines the level of detail visible in the projection. The higher the resolution, the more detailed the projected image. The original image's resolution also determines the aspect ratio of the projected image.

Standard 4:3 Aspect Ratio
800 x 600
1024 x 768
Widescreen 16:9 Aspect Ratio
1280 x 800

Multimedia Projector Throw Ratio

The further away your multimedia projector is from the projection area, the larger the projected image. That relationship is referred to as the throw ratio. Throw ration varies across brands and models. You'll need position your projector at the right distance to fill the projected area.


Multimedia Projector Technology

Projector technology is the final determining factor of picture quality. There are three types of multimedia projectors available on the market:

LCOS Multimedia Projectors

3M LCOS Pocket Projectors

Lycos models cost the least, and offer the lowest overall picture quality. 

DLP Projectors

DLP Projectors

DLP models are modestly priced and offer good picture quality. 

LCD Multimedia Projector

Epson LCD Projectors

LCD models cost the most, but offer the best picture quality. 

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Document printed / saved on 01/17/2018. Prices subject to change.