When choosing between the best 4K home theater projectors, there are a few factors you should keep in mind. After all, they don’t come cheap so you’ll want to know what you’re looking at. Here’s a few quick things to look for when you’re searching for a 4k projector.
Obviously, resolution is what dictates whether a projector is 4K or not. 4K resolution is 3840 x 2160, compared to traditional 1080p HD with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. You’ll want to ensure that the projector can project at the resolution that you’re looking for. The higher the better. Additionally, some projectors are ‘compatible’ with 4K resolution however they dull it down to 1080p. It’s important to find out whether or not the projector projects in 4K, or if it is just compatible with 4K. A true 4K projector will project in 4K resolution.
4K projectors have a fixed resolution, and therefore have a fixed aspect ratio, or native aspect ratio. Projectors typically come in a few popular aspect ratios: 16:9, 4:3 and 16:10. If you look at the resolution, you’ll be able to identify the aspect ratio. Simply navigate to this Aspect Ratio Calculator and type in the resolution.
Lumens refers to the brightness of the projector’s lamp. The higher the lumens, the brighter it can project. Brighter isn’t always better, but if you have a theater with a lot of ambient light, you’ll want a projector with a higher lumens rating. Vice versa, if you have a dark room for your theater, a projector with a lower lumens rating will be just fine. When you’re choosing a projector, keep in mind that small differences between lumens (100-300 lumens) is not a significant difference. We recommend 1,200 lumens or higher for a dark home theater room and at least 3,000 lumens for rooms with tons of ambient light.
Contrast ratio can be defined as the ration between the brightest and darkest pictures that a projector can emit. A higher contrast ratio will bring out more vibrant detail in colors. However, there are a lot of factors that contrast ratios don’t account for, including how the projector displays grays. The key thing with contrast is to look for good processing, like sRGB and BrilliantColor modes to control the projector’s display. Contrast ratio is important, however it’s not the most important factor to consider in a projector.
How do you plan to connect your video source to your projector? Connectivity is very important when considering any sort of video equipment. 4K projectors will all come with a 4K compatible HDMI input, but do you need additional inputs like VGA (analog), Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL) enabled ports, Wi-Fi connectivity? Knowing exactly how you’re going to be connecting your sources to the projector is critical to your decision making.
Ease of Setup & Use
If you look to install the projector on your own, understanding how easy it is to install and setup can be a very important factor. Is the graphic user interface easy to navigate and setup? Is it easy to customize the image to your liking? Does it have all of the hardware you need to install in your home theater? Although it may not be the most important factor, be sure to consider these questions.
Check out our list of the best 4k projectors on the market!