Best business projector buyer’s guide & test

Find out everything you need to know about projectors for seminar, meeting and office rooms in our business projector buyer’s guide. We explain the most important projector features and introduce you to the best projectors in our business projector test 2021.



Business projector test & recommendations

We have put together a selection of test-winning devices for you based on years of experience with projectors for business use. The projectors presented here are specially recommended by our experts for AV business solutions.

Buying a business projector: Here’s what you need to keep in mind

There are a lot of projector features to consider when determining whether a projector is ideally suited for business use. But that should not deter you. We will show you how to find a suitable business projector in no time in light of the most important projector features.

This business projector checklist will help you get started:


Business projector checklist

  • Home theatre or business
  • DLP, 3LCD, LCoS, SXRD
  • Room size, installation, distance to the screen
  • HD, Full HD, 4K
  • ANSI lumen values; higher value = brighter picture
  • Brilliant picture; higher value = better contrast
  • Projector fans above 32dB are perceived as loud
  • Digital and analogue, audio and video, control connections
  • 3D, lens shift, optical zoom, keystone correction

This is the fastest way to find the right business projector: Call us and we will find the best model for you - quickly and easily with no obligation! Phone: 0800 5893429211



Mobile or stationary projector: Which one fits your needs better?

Size ratio - stationary projector | Mobile projector:

Size ratio of projectors

If you only want to use the business projector in your meeting or conference room, we then recommend using a stationary projector such as an installed projector for business applications or a standard business projector for table set-up or ceiling mounting.

We recommend projectors for mobile use if for example you need to give PowerPoint presentations or lectures at different locations. These projectors are usually compact and light-weight. The smallest mobile projectors are mini projectors, which are also known as pocket projectors.

Stationary projectorsMobile Beamer
Good to very good brightness Compact
Good to very good image quality Light
One-time installation only Portable
Larger projection surfaces possible Low power drain
Selection of interactive projectors Ready-to-use

Stationary projectors

Good to very good brightness

Good to very good image quality

One-time installation only

Larger projection surfaces possible

Selection of interactive projectors

Mobile Beamer

Compact

Light

Portable

Portable

Ready-to-use


Is high image resolution important for a business projector?

Image resolution plays a slightly smaller role in business projectors than in home theatre projectors. However, you should not choose a resolution that is too low because the image resolution of a projector significantly influences the overall image quality.

A good business projector with convincing image quality should at least have WXGA (1,280 x 800) image resolution. However, we recommend a full HD business projector because full HD projectors can display text and images equally well on larger projection screens.

Image resolutionImage format
WXGA (1,280 x 800) 16:10
WUXGA (1,920 x 1,200) 16:10
Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) 16:9

Image resolution: WXGA (1,280 x 800) / Image format: 16:10

Image resolution: WUXGA (1,920 x 1,200) / Image format: 16:10

Image resolution: Full HD (1,920 x 1,080) / Image format: 16: 9

What level of brightness should a business projector offer?

Size ratio of projectors

It depends on how well you can darken the room in which you use a projector. Generally speaking, more powerful projectors are preferable to those with a low light output.

The brightness of a projector is specified in ANSI lumens. The higher the ANSI lumen value, the higher the light output of a projector.

For bright rooms such as conference and meeting rooms, we strongly recommend a projector with a brightness of 5,000 lumens. If it is possible to darken the room, then you can also use a projector with lower light output. However, the brightness should not be below 3,000 lumens.

RoomBrightness
Slightly darkened From 3,000 lumens
Not darkened From 5,000 lumens

Brightness

Room: Slightly darkened / Brightness: From 3,000 lumens

Room: Not darkened / Brightness: From 5,000 lumens

What is the right screen to use for a business projector?

You should buy a screen suited to your business projector if possible. This ensures the format of the screen will coincide with the projection image format of the projector, so the image completely fills the projection surface. That means, for example, that a screen for a full HD (16: 9) business projector should also have the format 16:9.


1:1 screen format

Of course you can also project a 16:9 or 16:10 image on a 1:1 screen. The projection surface will not be used fully in this case. This projector-screen combination has an advantage for rooms with high ceilings: The length of the 1:1 screen compensates for the difference in height. As a result, the projection can be better aligned at eye level.


Stationary & mobile screens

We also offer screens for stationary as well for mobile use. Stationary screens are permanently installed and are ready for immediate use, while mobile screens need to be set up at a new location before each use. However, the well thought-out construction of mobile screens allows for quick assembly.


Screen operation

The biggest advantage of a stationary screen compared to a mobile screen is that you have a choice between two ways of operating it: You can either opt for a screen with manual operation or for a screen with a built-in motor for easy handling.


Operation by handOperation with motor
Roll-up screen Motorised screen
Roll-up screen Motorised screen
Crank-operated screen Built-in ceiling screen
Crank-operated screen Built-in ceiling screen

Operation by hand:

Roll-up screen


Crank-operated screen


Operation with motor:

Motorised screen


Built-in ceiling screen


Our screen buyer’s guide will help you choose a suitable screen!

Tip: You can also custom order screens with a maximum width of up to 24 metres with us. For a non-binding consultation, give us a call!

Maximum mobility with a mini projector

Size ratio of projectors

The projectors with the best mobility are by far mini projectors. You can even take these projectors with you in a briefcase. Mini projectors are ready-to-use on location in just a few minutes.

While mini projectors are undoubtedly among the smallest and easiest to transport projectors, they do not come close to their bigger brothers in terms of light output and image resolution. Mini projectors are hardly ever brighter than 500 lumens, and their image resolution is usually far below Full HD. However, we recommend mini projectors for smaller presentations in well-darkened rooms with a small number of participants.

AdvantagesDisadvantages
Small and compact Low light output
Portable Low resolution
Also available with battery
Direct power off

Advantages

Small and compact

Portable

Also available with battery

Direct power off


Disadvantages

Low light output

Low resolution

The best projector technology for the office: LCD or DLP?

DLP (Digital Light Processing) and LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) are two projection technologies that are often used in projectors. DLP technology uses micromirrors for projection, while LCD works with liquid crystal panels.

There are certain advantages and disadvantages for both the DLP and the LCD projectors due to the technology used. You should consider these advantages and disadvantages depending on your needs before buying a projector.

Projection technologyApplication
Presentations in which good contrast plays a major role.
Presentations in which high colour fidelity and strong colours are more important than high contrast

Projection technology:

Application: Presentations in which good contrast plays a major role.


Application: Presentations in which high colour fidelity and strong colours are more important than high contrast


Buying a business projector with lamp or LED?

Just like when choosing the right projector technology for you, the decision depends on the advantages and disadvantages of the respective light-generating technology. Projectors with a mercury lamp are on average significantly brighter than projectors with LEDs as the light source.

However, LEDs have a lifespan many times longer than that of a projector lamp. A comparison: A projector lamp has to be replaced after 5,000 to 6,000 operating hours, while LEDs can supply a projector with light for up to 20,000 operating hours.

Advantages of LED projectorsAdvantages of lamp projectors
Very long lifespan of the light source Significantly brighter than LED projectors
Quieter than lamp projectors Better image quality
Low power drain Suitable for brighter rooms

Advantages of LED projectors

Very long lifespan of the light source

Quieter than lamp projectors

Low power drain


Advantages of lamp projectors

Significantly brighter than LED projectors

Better image quality

Suitable for brighter rooms

All information about LED projectors can be found in our LED projector buyer’s guide.

Speakers for business projectors

Speakers application

The sound is often as important as the image in a presentation or lecture. That is why many manufacturers include built-in speakers in some projector models. The output power of such projector speakers is very limited, so they are not suited to sound amplification in large rooms. However, we do recommend projectors with built-in speakers for smaller offices and office spaces.

For larger rooms and better audio quality you can also find external projector speakers. Here, you have the choice between passive and active speakers. The following table will help you find the right speakers for you.

SpeakersAdvantagesDisadvantages
integrated no additional speakers necessary
Ready-to-use
only recommended for small rooms
passive more flexible positioning
large selection
need an amplifier
active do not need an amplifier positioning restricted by limited length of power
and audio cable

Speakers: integrated

Advantages

no additional speakers necessary

Ready-to-use

Disadvantages

only recommended for small rooms


Speakers: passive

Advantages

more flexible positioning

large selection

Disadvantages

need an amplifier


Speakers: active

Advantages

do not need an amplifier

Disadvantages

positioning restricted by limited length of power and audio cable

You can find all the information you are looking for in our Speakers buyer’s guide!

The most important business projector connections

Whether a projector connection is important depends on the kind of playback device you want to connect to the projector. Both the projector and the playback device such as a Blu-ray player or a notebook need to have at least the same inputs and outputs for video and audio. Additional connections for the transmission of general data and control data are also needed.

Business presentation insider tip: The best solution for an interactive wireless presentation is provided by Barco ClickShare. Several participants can switch between individual presentations without delay with a single button that is connected to a notebook via USB.

The most important business projector connections at one glance:

ConnectionAudioVideoDataCharacteristics
VGA Only analogue video signal
HDMI Digital multimedia connection
Displayport Digital video connection
DVI-I Digital and analogue video connection
Cinch-Stereo For stereo-signal transfer
USB Only for data transfer
USB-C Digital connection for multimedia and data
LAN For transfer of control data
3.5-jack Transfers audio signal to external audio devices

Connection: VGA

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: Only analogue video signal


Connection: HDMI

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: Digital multimedia connection


Connection: Displayport

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: Digital video connection


Connection: DVI-I

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: Digital and analogue video connection


Connection: Cinch-Stereo

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: For stereo-signal transfer


Connection: USB

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: Only for data transfer


Connection: USB-C

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: Digital connection for multimedia and data


Connection: LAN

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: For transfer of control data


Connection: 3.5-jack

Audio:

Video:

Data:

Characteristics: Transfers audio signal to external audio devices

Learn more about how to connect a projector correctly!

Data as well as video and audio signals can also be transferred wirelessly to a projector. To do this, you can use a WiFi projector or upgrade your projector with a WIFI dongle for wireless transmission.

The most important business projector features

There are a lot of projector features that make handling a business projector before, during and after a presentation much easier and more pleasant.

 

MHL (Mobile High-Definition Link)

If a projector supports MHL, you can easily transfer high-resolution content from mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets and charge them at the same time.







USB/SD reader

The easiest way to get content to the screen quickly. Projectors with a USB/SD reader can play various file formats directly from a USB stick or SD card.







Direct power on/off

A feature that makes your projector ready for use or ready for transport as quickly as possible. Projectors with direct power on do not require time for the lamp to warm up; they can project an image immediately after switching on. And the projector can be turned off immediately with direct power off. However, only LED projectors have these features.





Media player

A media player integrated into the projector is a really practical feature. It allows you to play various media formats, for example from a USB stick.







Miracast

Projectors with the Miracast wireless screencast standard can also stream multimedia content from smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices. However, in order to do this the mobile device that is being used must also support this standard.






Speakers for business projectors


Speakers application

There is hardly a better alternative to a projector than an interactive display. This is especially true since interactive displays also offer some features that are reserved only for interactive projectors. In contrast to most projectors, interactive touch displays can also be operated in bright rooms as the image quality is not affected by the light.

An overview of the advantages

Interactive displays - all advantages

  • Stable assembly
  • Operation via touch input
  • Outstanding image quality
  • 4K displays also available
  • Some pre-installed software
  • Collaborative work
All displays

When combined with a document camera, interactive displays are ideal for presenting smaller products or product prototypes. Changes and suggestions can be recorded collaboratively as annotations on the display.

 

Helpful guides & reviews

 

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