Projector Recommendation

CrazyJoeCrazyJoe Winter Springs, FL Icrontian
So one of the people at my school asked me for a recommendation for a projector and since I don't know too much about them I thought I'd ask you all since I know there are several of you that have theater projectors. They want one that's portable that they can put out in the back yard to show TV/movies, but not a permanent fixture. Any recommendations? They didn't give a budget so maybe a few different ones at different price points? Thanks!!


  • midgamidga "There's so much hot dog in Rome" ~digi (> ^.(> O_o)> Icrontian
    Paging @drasnor
  • BlackHawkBlackHawk Bible music connoisseur There's no place like Icrontian
    I believe @fatcat and @qch also have projectors.
  • RyderRyder Kalamazoo, Mi Icrontian
    @lincoln as well. We watched RHPS in the backyard on it.
  • LincLinc Owner Detroit Icrontian
    I bought one, but it's only been used once and wasn't particularly compelling, it was just inexpensive and fit the bill well enough. I don't know any more about projectors than Joe does.
  • QCHQCH Ancient Guru Chicago Area - USA Icrontian
    Two weeks ago my trusty 2007 DLP Projector died and I bought this one off WOOT.

    It is out of stock right now. Personally, Lumens is very important if you plan on viewing the screen in any place other than a dark room. I think 1700 is the minimum. Mine is 2400 and BLOWS away my old 800 Lumens. Contrast Ratio is somewhat important. Native Resolution ended up being a big one too. My old one could do 1080p but it was natively 854×480 and upconverted to 1080p. My new one runs at 1280 x 720 and upconverts to 1080p VERY nicely. I'm sitting at about 118" of HD beauty now... SO happy. And it quieter by at least 90% and less heat and shuts down so much faster...

    Stick with DLP since LED is just not bright enough yet at an affordable price point.
  • drasnordrasnor Starship Operator Hawthorne, CA Icrontian
    I have an Epson 6020UB which is incredibly awesome and also about as expensive as a 70" LED TV. As a general point, nothing will work if you're outside in daylight. All the inexpensive, bright projectors have crappy color but a lot of people won't notice or care. Your mileage may vary. DLP is a solid, affordable choice. Read ProjectorCentral reviews before shelling out cash.
  • fatcatfatcat Mizzou Icrontian
    I think you mean LCD, not LED Q.

    Without knowing a budget Joe, it's hard to recommend any projector since they can go from $400-$400,000

    Watching movies outside during the day, any projector will struggle (projects light into light, yea anyways) but for night viewing you will want to know how much ambient light from sources will directly effect the viewing area etc. Which brings me to Lumens. Basically the higher the better.

    But you also don't want to run the projector at max brightness either, as that will kill lamp hours. I have a 2000 Lumens projector that I can easily run about 700 Lumens at night and around 900-1100 when the sun is beating on the curtains. Remember the darker the ambient light is around the screen/projector, the brighter/more pop the image will have.

    Secondly, I will not recommend any projector that doesn't do 1080p. 1080p has been around for years now, is the standard, and when spending your hard earned cash on a projector, don't skimp with 720p. Some people don't mind upscaling, but it irks the hell out of me. I want all my movies in native resoultion. 4K is coming, but it's not practical yet.

    There are always debates about DLP vs LCD. Rainbows vs. Dynamic Contrast. Fixed positioning vs. 120% basically install it anywhere. taught me everything I know about projectors. Remember no projector will look perfect out of the box. I've spent a good 10 hours calibrating mine, and a 2nd time once I reached 50 hours burn-in on the lamp. When you're watching movies on a 10 foot or bigger screen in your living room, it's gotta look perfect.

    I own an Epson Home Cinema 8350 1080p 3LCD Bought it two years ago and have loved every minute of owning it.

    So if you get some more info Joe, I'll gladly help with what I can questions wise.
  • drasnordrasnor Starship Operator Hawthorne, CA Icrontian
    As an addendum, I agree with everything @fatcat just wrote. Since you're going to be using it outside for what sounds like temporary setup I'd say you can do without a tilt/shift or short-throw lens. I personally have problems with DLP because I "see the rainbow" but I'll grant a lot of people don't and it's a relatively inexpensive way to get a bright image with good contrast and color. I suspect that for temporary outdoor use quality isn't that important because they're not going to spend more than a couple of minutes dialing in the setup and we're not having a discussion of what screen they should get. Definitely get a 1080p projector because 720p is on its way out and 1080p looks better on large screens.
  • CrazyJoeCrazyJoe Winter Springs, FL Icrontian
    OK, thanks guys, I'll talk to them today to get a budget, so that can narrow down some recommendations.
  • CrazyJoeCrazyJoe Winter Springs, FL Icrontian
    OK, so I talked to them and they said their budget was somewhere between $500 & $800.
  • fatcatfatcat Mizzou Icrontian

    just a quick search. I've heard good things about the Viewsonic
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