The projector's innovative Launcher page is used for picking the source, starting its internal apps, and visiting Web sites. It can also connect to a phone or Bluetooth keyboard. But at its $999 street price, the 3,500 ANSI lumen EH600 is expensive compared to the much brighter, 4,500-lumen Optoma EH412 at $849, as well as the 3,600-lumen Epson Pro EX9220 at $799. Still, the EH600 delivers an unusual all-in-one projecting experience that schools and businesses could find compelling.
At first glance, the EH600 is a thoroughly conventional business projector that uses a traditional 200-watt mercury vapor lamp and a 0.65-inch DLP imaging target to create 1920x1080 (1080p) video at a 16:9 aspect ratio. Its 5,000-hour lamp life (Normal mode), 3,500 lumen brightness (as verified in our tests), and 6,000:1 rated contrast ratio should fit equally well in a conference room, a small house of worship, or a school's small lecture hall or large classroom.
If it's used for 40 hours a week and the office pays the national average of 13 cents per kilowatt-hour for electricity, its annual operating expenses add up to roughly $132 a year. That's on the high side, particularly compared to solid state projectors that use less power and don't require periodic lamp replacements. The comparable figure for the recently tested, 4,500-lumen Vivitek DH3660Z, for example, is $58 a year.
On the surface, BenQ's EH600 might appear to be a conventional conference room projector capable of pumping out 3,500 lumens of light, but dig a little deeper and you'll find that the projector is unique, with the equivalent of a built-in Android tablet that can independently project a variety of material. On its own, the EH600 excels at projecting documents, spreadsheets, presentations and Web sites.
Brightness. The projector's brightness and contrast can be adjusted from the remote control or via the projector's Settings. Using the Normal lamp mode and Bright Picture setting, the EH600 projected its maximum brightness of 3,516 ANSI lumens. This dropped to 2,248 lumens for both the Presentation and Infographic modes, 2,239 for Video mode and 2,069 for sRGB mode.
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In short, the generally-accepted number of lumens for an outdoor projector to be clear - in daylight - is about 2,500. Almost all of the models on our best outdoor projector have that amount or more so will serve you well. However, at night the required brightness can be lower than this due to it, well, being darker and nighttime. That's why something like the XGIMI Halo+ with 900-odd lumens can be a belter at night.
The XGIMI Halo+ is a great outdoor projector that boasts a bright 1080p picture, quick auto-keystone and focus, and a very decent battery life of almost three hours. Bright enough to watch in any light, by dusk you can get huge images that belay the small size of the unit. Setup is a breeze with really fast auto-keystoning and focus giving perfect picture from a range of angles, and the built-in stand further helps position the image.
The native 1080p picture (it also supports UHD images) looks sharp with instant autofocus and kearning to give quality display wherever you set it up. In our testing we found that it gave wonderfully clear images up to 150 inches, which is a huge picture from such a small projector. The 100ms+ input lag is an issue though and is a real drawback for gaming, though.
Generally speaking, the best outdoor projector will have to have a lumen brightness starting point of about 2,500. This is the best minimum to aim for, but, of course, being outside and subject to all the natural light, the more the better. Like a TV might be bad with glare from incoming natural light so to can outdoor projectors - and that the brighter your projector can go, the better it will combat the natural light. Thus, an outdoor projector that has 7,500 lumens will absolutely be bright enough for using externally.
Our new Black Diamond SI Screens' proprietary screen material is able to reflect the light from your projector back with so much potency it actually increases the contrast ratio of your projector by more than 300%, enabling you to use the projector in a well-lit space. But for those looking to purchase a projector, read on to learn how many lumens you need for your presenting environment.
All colors and no lag make a brilliant 4K projector: That's the Optoma UHD55 in a nutshell. Designed for both gaming and home entertainment, the Optoma UHD55 offers 4K resolution (3,840 by 2,160 pixels, via DLP technology and TI's fast-switch pixel shifting), superb color output, and the short input lag that gamers demand. It delivers a faster response at 4K than most projectors can manage, putting it within the range that a serious gamer would consider acceptable. Even better, the lag dropped by roughly half, to 8.6ms, for 1080p/120Hz input.
Sheer specs don't tell the whole story of the TH685P. This 1080p projector has almost identical specs to those of its BenQ predecessor, but the TH685P delivers an obviously better image with HDR input. That is a big thumbs-up in a gaming and home entertainment projector at this price. It also surprised us with its onboard audio quality; the sound from the internal 5-watt chamber speaker is quite usable and pumps out high enough volume to fill a large family room.
The Vankyo Leisure 495W Dolby Audio is far from the only home entertainment projector in strictly bargain-basement territory, but it's the best we've seen in that price range, at $299 list and selling on Vankyo's website for $179.99 at this writing. It delivers 1080p (1,920 by 1,080) native resolution along with more-than-acceptable color accuracy and contrast for casual viewing. And its design guarantees that it can't show rainbow artifacts.
The EpiqVision Mini EF12 offers a native 1080p resolution and pairs a 1,000-lumen laser-phosphor light source with a three-LCD chip design. In our tests, the 1,000 ANSI lumens was enough to light up an 80-inch screen with nicely saturated color in a family room at night even with lights on and also delivered a watchable image in daytime. The three chips, which project all three primary colors at once, guarantee that it can't produce rainbow artifacts. Two other important pluses are integrated Android TV and a 4.7-pound weight, which makes the EF12 surprisingly light for a laser projector.
Whether you're serious about gaming and want a native 1080p room-to-room portable gaming projector with the shortest possible input lag, or are a more casual gamer who doesn't demand a short lag, but would love to have it, the X1300i will give you that advantage, along with the multiple game modes. Whichever group you're in, you'll appreciate that the same button on the remote that switches game modes also switches to the best picture modes for movies or video. Even those who aren't interested in gaming may want to consider the X1300i it for its combination of image quality for movies and video plus its high brightness, which is helpful for 3D viewing or a backyard movie night.
The BenQ GV30 offers both lower resolution (720p, or 1,280 by 720 pixels) and lower brightness (300 ANSI lumens) than most room-to-room portables, meaning streaming projectors with good enough audio so you don't need to lug an external sound system with you. It's also less expensive than most, and at just 3.5 pounds, it's the most portable as well, with a finger-size loop that makes it easy to carry. It's shaped pretty much like a 7-inch wheel of cheese, and it offers an innovative magnetic stand that stays in place when you pick up the projector but also lets you rotate the GV30 freely on the stand to adjust image height. The streaming is handled by a bundled Android TV dongle that fits in a hidden compartment.
Business users and educators who need a bright image above all, and maybe the ability to move the unit from place to place now and then. They'll also project a relatively basic menu of material, given the native resolution. If you never show anything more demanding than PowerPoint presentations with big fonts, and you don't need a widescreen aspect ratio, a lower-resolution projector like this one can serve just as well as a 1080p model.
The Epson EX3280 pairs a low price with high-enough brightness to throw a suitably large picture for a midsize conference room or classroom with ambient light. And because it's built around three LCD chips, it can't be plagued by the rainbow artifacts that some people see with single-chip projectors and find annoying. The three-chip design also guarantees that color images will be fully as bright as you would expect from the 3,600-lumen white brightness rating.
The Anker Nebula Solar Portable is our top pick for mini projectors, a category defined by weighing about two to four pounds, being small enough to fit in a briefcase or backpack, and still offering a reasonably bright image. Rated at 400 ANSI lumens, the Solar Portable was bright enough in our tests to light up a 90-inch diagonal, 16:9, 1.0 gain screen in a dark room. Its native resolution is 1080p (1,920 by 1,080), but it behaves like a 4K model with soft focus, connecting at 4K by default and downconverting the image to 1080p. Its home entertainment features include Android TV 9 for streaming over a Wi-Fi connection to your network, the ability to mirror mobile devices, and a built-in battery that's rated to last long enough on a charge to watch a full-len