White projector with remote control

Projector buying advice at visunext

We have summarised the most important information on the subject of projectors for you!

DLP or LCD, LED or laser, 4K or Full HD, ANSI lumens, contrast ratio, lens shift - in the world of projectors , you first have to find your way around to make the right choice!

We have compiled the most important information on the subject of projectors for you as a buying guide based on the latest technological developments.


Area of application: What do you want to use the projector for?

The first question you should ask yourself before buying is what you want to use your projector for. The different areas of application result in very different criteria such as resolution, brightness, contrast and volume, which you should pay attention to when buying a projector. Basically, a distinction is made between projectors for home use and projectors for business use.

Projector use in the home cinema or living room

For your private home cinema or living room, we recommend a projector with 16:9 resolution, as most films are available in 16:9 format. Full HD projectors (1920 x 1080 pixels) and 4K projectors (3840 x 2160 pixels) offer this format and have become the standard for home cinema applications.

Living room with beamer on the table that projects an image onto a screen
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3D representation

A good home cinema projector today is 3D-capable. A very good home cinema projector offers another important function: intermediate image calculation in 2D as well as in 3D. This ensures a smooth picture during fast movements. In order to be able to play high-resolution Blu-ray films, the projector also needs an HDMI connection or an HDCP-capable DVI connection.

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Luminosity and contrasts

In order to display colours and gradients optimally, your home cinema projector should have acontrast ratio of at least 10,000:1.
the luminosity you need for your projector depends on the ambient brightness. If your home cinema can be completely darkened, a luminosity of approx. 1500 ANSI lumens is already sufficient. If there is a lot of ambient light in your rooms, at least 5,000 ANSI lumens are necessary.


Especially in home cinema, the volume of the projector is an important criterion. If you want to enjoy films in peace, a quiet projector below 30dB is the right choice for you. In the living room, on the other hand, the volume is less decisive, as factors such as light output play a more important role here. Only the right sound makes the home cinema experience perfect. However, the internal speakers of a projector are not sufficient for this, which is why we recommend using an AV receiver with surround speakers and Dolby Digital or DTS sound.

If you already want to prepare for the high-resolution future, a 4K projector (3840 x 2160 pixels) is the right choice, provided the budget is generously planned. High-quality Full HD home cinema projectors also offer 4K upscaling, such as 4K enhancement technology. This doubles the resolution by shifting each pixel diagonally by 0.5 pixels. This produces a noticeably better picture quality.

Projector use in business for presentations

Basically, we distinguish between business projectors for ceiling mounting and portable presentation projectors for mobile use or as tabletopprojectors. For ceiling mounting, the projector should have an appropriate mounting hole. In addition, a projector with automatic keystone correction is very helpful to compensate for distortions in the projection.

Large conference room with screen and beamer
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Mobile devices should not weigh more than 3 kilograms for easy transport and ideally have internal loudspeakers to be able to give presentations at any location. If the sound is not sufficient, you can use an external loudspeaker that can be connected directly to your notebook via Bluetooth or 3.5 mm jack
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Since business projectors are usually used in a bright environment, a high luminosity of at least 3,000 ANSI lumens is important for displaying good contrasts. For daylight use, a contrast ratio of approx. 5,000:1 is sufficient.


Also look for USB or SD card slots if you want to play presentations directly from the stick without a PC. For maximum flexibility, Wi-Fi capability is a helpful feature for your projector. If you have an MHL-enabled smartphone or tablet, an MHL-enabled projector is of interest to you. You can connect it directly to the mobile device via cable.

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In terms of resolution, at least a WXGA resolution (1280 x 800 pixels) is required for a legible display of fonts and graphics. WXGA is particularly popular with customers who have a widescreen laptop. Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) or WUXGA projectors (1,920 x 1,200 pixels) are an even better choice, as these resolutions enable a higher-quality display of graphics and videos.

Brightness: How bright should your projector be?

The brightness of a projector, also called luminous intensity or luminance, is measured and specified in ANSI lumens. It describes how much light a projector can project onto a certain surface.

To determine how high the light intensity should be, you need to consider the conditions of the premises. Can your room be darkened? For example, the brighter the ambient light, the brighter the projection needs to be. The image size and the projection distance are also important factors for the required brightness of the projector, as the luminous intensity naturally decreases with increasing distance.

optimal luminosity for LCD projectors

The illustration shows the optimum brightness for LCD projectors in various scenarios such as living rooms or meeting rooms. For DLP projectors, approx. 1000 lumens must be added to the values given below, as these are somewhat darker due to the technology, provided that mainly coloured content is projected.

Contrast: What are the lighting conditions of the location?

The contrast ratio describes the maximum difference in the brightness of black and white. With a contrast value of 1,000:1, the brightest point is thus one thousand times brighter than the darkest point. The higher the contrast of a projector, the sharper and more natural the projected image.

How high the contrast values should be always depends on the area of application and the ambient brightness. Especially with home cinema projectors, a high contrast is important to create a deep black. Even in darker rooms, high-contrast projectors can reproduce vivid and true-to-life colours.

high/low contrast

If you want to use your projector mainly in daylight or artificial lighting, the contrast is therefore of secondary importance. However, every projector should have a contrast ratio of at least 5,000:1 .

Resolution and format: How many pixels does your projector need?

The resolution describes the number of pixels that create the image. The higher the pixel density, the sharper the image. The resolution you need for your projector depends on the intended use and the image source.

Since we are used to high-resolution picture quality from TVs and monitors these days, you should start with at least Full HD resolution when buying a projector.

With an HD Ready projector (1,280 x 720 pixels), you can experience DVDs on the big screen, but if you expect a razor-sharp picture with Blu-ray or modern streaming services, you should go fora Full HD projector (1,920 x 1,080 pixels). A Full HD projector is also the right choice for gamers with PS4 or XBox 360.


Full HD is by no means the end of the line - more and more projectors are opting for 4K resolution with 3,840 x 2,160 pixels. Thanks to streaming portals, high-quality Blu-rays and next-gen game consoles such as PS5 and XBox Series X, more and more content can be enjoyed in 4K. However, with a good upscaler (e.g. in the AV receiver), you can also enjoy Full HD content in 4K.

Projector resolutions at a glance

SVGA (800x600)4:3Very cheap, just enough for simple presentations in 4:3 formatLimited detail, not ideal for videos or complex graphicslower entry level
XGA (1024x768)4:3Sufficient for occasional business presentations, still very affordableNot ideal for videosEntry-level
HD ready (1280x720)16:9Supports HD content, sufficient detail for many applications, suitable for occasional video viewingNot as detailed as Full HDMid-range
WXGA (1280x800)16:10Supports HDready content, better detail, good for videos and presentations in offices and schools
Slightly more expensive than SVGA and XGAMid-range
Full HD (1920x1080)16:9Excellent picture quality, ideal for home movies and detailed business graphicsInexpensive, requires more bandwidth for streamingProfessional class
WUXGA (1920x1200)16:10High resolution for detailed graphics, ideal for business and school presentationsMay be more expensive, not all content supports this resolutionProfessional class
4K UHD (3840x2160)16:9Extremely high detail, incredible picture quality, ideal for 4K moviesRequires high quality media sources and plenty of bandwidthHigh-end professional class

Operating noise: How many decibels are quiet, how many loud?

Depending on the area of application, the noise development of a projector plays a more or less central role.

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So that you can enjoy the film at a home cinema evening or are not disturbed by loud background noise during a presentation, the operating noise of the projector should not exceed 30 dB. As a rule, the larger a projector is, the quieter it is, because larger fans can be built into a large housing, which can rotate much more slowly than small fans for the same amount of air. Therefore, home theatre projectors with large chassis reach values below 30 dB much faster. Small, portable projectors, on the other hand, are usually somewhat louder.

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The brightness also plays a decisive role. The brighter the projector, the louder it is. This is because brighter lamps need to be cooled more. In addition to the volume, the frequency of the fan also plays a role in whether the noise is perceived as annoying. Therefore, the dB value is not always directly comparable.

Tip: To be able to enjoy the film during a home cinema evening, the operating noise of the projector should be below 30 dB. We also recommend external speakers, as they drown out the operating noise of the projector.

Technology: Which method is suitable for your projector?

What are the different technologies and how do they differ? We present the most important projector technologies and show you the advantages and disadvantages.

DLP technology

DLP technology

In the DLP (Digital Light Processing) process, the image is created by millions of small mirrors that project the light from the lamp onto the screen. Each mirror corresponds to a point of light (pixel) whose tilting movement, invisible to the human eye, produces a multitude of colour nuances. The mirrors can also be tilted completely backwards so that no light is cast onto the screen from this mirror and the pixel remains black. This gives a very good representation of the contrast ratio.

Due to the fine mirror structure, the image display is also very sharp and no raster structure is visible in the image. DLP technology requires less space in the projector housing, which makes it interesting for the production of smaller devices. DLP projectors work with a closed system from the light source to the optics. Since no dust can penetrate, DLP devices are low-maintenance or virtually maintenance-free.

Advantages and disadvantages of DLP technology



  • fine writing and line drawing

  • high contrast

  • long-life DMD chips

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  • Rainbow effect (slight flashes of colour visible)

  • audible colour wheel under certain circumstances

  • lower colour fidelity

Tip: DLP projectors are particularly suitable for business / home cinema entry-level applications.

LCD technology

LCD technology

In the LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) process, the projector splits the white light of the projector lamp into the RGB colours with the help of various dichroic mirrors. The light rays of the individual colours are passed through LCD chips and then reassembled into a recognisable colour image. Simplified, this process can be thought of as a slide projector. Instead of a slide, they contain small liquid crystal elements that display the image to be projected. With LCD technology, particularly strong and natural colours as well as high-quality colour gradients can be produced, but slight gradations in the saturation of the black value as well as a slight raster formation must be accepted. In home cinema projectors, on the other hand, the black level is digitally optimised.

Advantages and disadvantages of LCD technology



  • true colour images

  • fine pixel delineation

  • slightly brighter in direct comparison with DLP technology

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  • Fly screen effect possible at low resolution

  • more maintenance-intensive (filter change necessary)

Tip: LCD projectors are particularly suitable for high-end home cinema!

LCoS Technology


This process is known under different names by the manufacturers. JVC calls it D-ILA (Direct-Drive Image Light Amplification), Canon calls the technology LCos (Liquid Crystal on silicon) and Sony calls it SXRD (Silicon X-tal Reflective Display). All three are based on the same mode of operation.

It works similarly to LCD technology, but the panels reflect the light instead of letting it pass through (as with DLP technology). D-ILA / LCoS / SXRD thus combines the advantages of DLP and LCD technology.

Advantages and disadvantages of D-ILA, LCoS and SXRD technologies



  • high quality images, true colour images

  • fine pixel delineation

  • somewhat brighter in direct comparison with DLP technology

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  • lower lumen output

  • relatively higher price

Tip: Projectors with D-ILA, LCoS and SXRD technology are particularly suitable for home cinema!

Features: What features should your projector have?

Depending on the application, there are various functions that make it easier to use the projector. We have compiled the most important functions for you, which are usually very useful!

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Keystone correction

  • also called: keystone correction
  • corrects the trapezoidal distortions that occur when the projector is tilted.
  • the image is squeezed at the top or bottom of the screen until the trapezoidal distortion is corrected
  • helpful to compensate for slanted projections and to straighten the image

Optical zoom

  • 2x zoom for great flexibility in home cinema projectors
  • helpful when an optimal distance to the screen cannot be guaranteed

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Lens shift

  • Move image without distortion horizontally and vertically without tilting the projector
  • helpful if projector cannot be placed centrally in front of the screen

Connections: Analogue or digital interfaces?

When it comes to connection options, you should consider which devices you want to connect your projector to.

Generally, a distinction is made between analogue and digital interfaces. Analogue connections include inputs for VGA, S-Video, composite video or component video. Among analogue connections, the VGA connection is most likely to be used, if still required today. Digital connections - standard today - are HDMI and DisplayPort, which are considered the highest quality.

One of the two connections should be considered for every purchase in order to meet current requirements. A DVI connection is now mostly only used with installation projectors, as HDMI and DisplayPort have prevailed in the display of HD and 4K content. If your source and projector offer a digital interface, you should always use the digital connection, e.g. HDMI or DisplayPort, forbetter picture quality . You can find out more about all the connections, their meaning and how they work on our"Connecting a projector" page!

Tip: The digital connections HDMI and DVI are considered the highest quality.

Set-up: How do you place your projector correctly?

Seating Distance

Seat spacing

The optimal seating distance of the viewer to the screen depends on the resolution of the projector. For HD Ready resolution (1,280 x 720px), the optimum seating distance should be at least 1.8 times the screen width. If you want to use a Full HD projector (1,920 x 1,080px), the minimum distance for a high-quality image is 1.5 times the screen width. Do you want an even bigger picture? Then 4K resolution is the right choice! With 4K projectors (3,840 x 2,160px), you can reduce the seating distance to 1 times the screen width. Due to the high resolution, the image is of high quality despite the small distance and the pixel structure is not visible.

Optimum seating distance
HD Ready / WXGA resolutionSeating distance = screen width x 1.8
Full-HD / WUXGA resolutionSeat pitch = screen width x 1.5
4K resolutionSeat pitch = screen width x 1


When setting up LCD project ors, the projector should be as parallel as possible to the bottom edge of the screen or, if ceiling mounted, hung parallel to the top edge of the screen. LCD projectors project the image relatively straight out of the lens.

DLP projectors often work with a so-called offset. This means that the image starts a little higher. The projector should therefore be placed slightly below the bottom edge of the screen or hung slightly higher than the top edge of the screen. Small corrections to the image can be made with keystone correction. The projection ratio of the projector should also be taken into account. This indicates how far the projector must be from the screen in order to project the entire image area.

To determine the projection ratio of your projector, use our projection surface calculator. Also note that depending on the installation location, you will need a correspondingly long HDMI cable.

Operating costs: How expensive are replacement lamps?

When buying a projector, pay attention to the possible follow-up costs forreplacement lamps. The price is usually between approx. 35 and 350 euros, depending on the lamp.

As a rule, the service life of a lamp is between 2000 and 4000 hours. With mobile projectors, the lamp life is much shorter due to the different design and is approximately 1000 to 1500 hours .

If you use the projector every day and want to keep the maintenance costs as low as possible, an LED or laser-LED hybrid projector is interesting, which can last up to 20,000 hours without changing lamps. In addition to the costs for the lamps, there are also no costs for changing them if you are not allowed to change the lamp yourself (e.g. in a school).

By the way: the cost of a replacement lamp varies between 35 and 350 euros, LED projectors have a longer life.

Let's go on the projector search!

Have we been able to give you an idea of the most important selection options and purchase criteria? If you now know which features your projector should have, try our buying guide! You can use it to filter the diverse range of products according to your wishes and find the ideal projector for your projecton project!

Of course, our contact persons will also be happy to advise you personally.

Our projector recommendations


Screen buying advice


Projector test winner


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Tobias Berg and Oliver Stenzel - contact persons in Purchasing and Sales - write on glass pane

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