A rogue ringtone, a knock at the door, a missing document—there are plenty of things to interrupt a presentation. Your projector, though, should never be the culprit.
Avoid interruptions to your message by considering which features will best suit your space, audience, and use case when choosing a new projector.
Choosing a Projector That Meets Your Needs
Your use case will determine the best projector solution. Some questions to consider include:
- How many meeting participants do you usually have?
- How far will people be sitting from the screen?
- Do you need a projector that can connect to your network or one that is compatible with external devices such as laptops?
- Where is the control panel for your projector and who will be operating it?
Generally speaking, projectors are more flexible than other display options such as flat panels because they are portable, can support multiple use cases, and offer higher quality for large images.
Next, think about the size of your room—and the size of your images. A common misconception about projector technology is that it’s designed to create large images for large spaces, but projectors can create big images for small spaces too.
Short throw and ultra-short throw projectors can create large images even if your projector is close to the screen. They are a particularly good option for spaces such as small conference rooms, small classrooms, or trade show booths. But a short throw projector isn’t always the right solution.
Long throw projectors are cheaper and better suited for large venues. A throw distance calculator can help you decide which option is better. Remember, an image that is too small to see—or so big it overwhelms the audience—will take away from the power of your message.
Another key component of a successful projection presentation is the brightness of the image. The number of lumens in your projector determines the brightness of its images. A lumen is a way of measuring the intensity and reach of light.
The level of ambient light in your room will determine the number of lumens you need. Just as bigger isn’t always better when it comes to projectors, brighter isn’t always better either. You don’t want your audience to feel like they’re staring directly into the sun when they look at your projected image.
Finally, consider which specialized features will support how you plan to use the projector. If your business has a large campus with conference rooms spread out in multiple buildings, consider a mobile or portable projector you can take anywhere. For applications that require highly detailed images—a university art class, medical training events or museum displays, for example—consider a 4K Ultra HD projector with high pixel density. Rear projection systems, which place the projector behind the screen, are ideal for outdoor applications or other instances where people are more likely to walk in front of the projector.
Calculating a Projector’s Total Cost of Ownership
As with any technology, the cost of a projector is more than just the initial purchase price. Factors that contribute to a projector’s total cost of ownership (TCO) include whether you need additional equipment to operate your projector or whether your projector has high overall maintenance costs, such as a lamp that needs frequent replacing.
It’s a lot to consider, but a certified AV professional can help you make the best choice for your needs.