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-   -   Outdoor projector recommendations (http://www.avsforum.com/forum/68-digital-projectors-under-3-000-usd-msrp/1597329-outdoor-projector-recommendations.html)

vonedaddy 07-09-2014 01:42 PM

Outdoor projector recommendations
I am looking for a projector to use in my backyard for the neighborhood kids to watch movies. I would like to start the movie at dusk and project to an approx 8 foot screen.

I have read differing opinions about how many lumens I need and what resolution will look good. I am hoping that some of the experts here can give me some clear recommendations. I am looking to spend 500-600 dollars if possible.

Thanks in advance for any help.

AV_Integrated 07-09-2014 02:11 PM

If you can swing $100 more and get the BenQ W1070, you will be very happy. It's very entry level priced 1080p and really delivers on image quality. To the point where you may decide to setup an indoor theater as well.

Otherwise, there are tons of options, but the Optoma H180X delivers 720p HD performance for about $450.

I would spend the extra hundred. You can easily fill a screen that size, or even go a lot larger if you wanted to. I use it with a 161" diagonal screen and it looks solid even with a fair bit of ambient light on it.

vonedaddy 07-09-2014 02:48 PM

Thank you for your reply. Another issue I have been hearing about is replacing the bulbs/lamps. Some folks have told me the bulbs are VERY expensive, do you have any idea if these bulbs are affordable and how often they need replacing?

AV_Integrated 07-09-2014 04:43 PM

Lamps are a part of projector ownership and are expensive. This is true for all bright projectors which use traditional lamps.

For example, the original (BenQ branded) W1070 lamp is about $230.



Lamps are typically rated to at least 2,000 hours or more.

In perspective, you could watch about 1,000 two hour movies at the very least.

In low power mode, the lamp on the W1070 is rated to 6,000 hours, in high power mode, it's rated to 3,500 hours. You may see 4,000-5,000 hours realistically before you want to replace the lamp.

Let's go back to 2,000 hours though. At 1,000 movies, that would mean that each movie costs about 23 cents to enjoy. If you get double that lifetime from the lamp, then a movie is less than 12 cents to enjoy.

If you watched two movies outside, every week, then you should reasonably expect it to be 5+ years (or quite a bit longer) before you would be looking at replacing a lamp.

So, while lamps are expensive, replacements aren't frequent unless you are using your projector 6 hours a day. In which case 'frequent' may mean once every 1-2 years. Since you have indicated a lot less usage, you may never end up replacing the lamp. But, I suggest you do save up for a new lamp and have funds set aside for a new lamp should you need it. ALWAYS get a factory branded original lamp to replace the one in the projector.

vonedaddy 07-09-2014 06:04 PM

Thank you so much, you have helped me a great deal!

bentleyazure 07-10-2014 08:04 AM

I am interested in a similar set-up outdoors, and comparing the 1080ST/1070 vs. the HD25-LV. My area get afternoon shade, so the projector and screen would be completely in the shade in mid-afternoon.

Is it preferred to have the projector in front of the seating area? If so, the 1080ST is probably the one for me so I can maximize the size via the short throw. Only concern there is the brightness is rated 2000 lumens...

Adult Beverage 07-10-2014 09:39 AM

Take a look at BackyardTheater.com for lots of info on outdoor theater set ups.

You want lumens. Nothing worse than waiting an extra 30 minutes for it to be dark enough. If this will probably only ever be outside just for fun I'd rather have 3,000-lumen 720p than 2,000-lumen 1080p. I started out with a 7-foot wide drop cloth and upgraded a few times to a 14-foot wide Dazian rear-projection screen. Once you start you may realize 8 feet is not enough and as you go bigger, you'll need more lumens to maintain the brightness. Depending on the screen material, ambient light and source material, you may not see much (if any) difference between 720 and 1080. If you plan to use the PJ inside as well, I would definitely consider 1080 at that point.

AV_Integrated 07-10-2014 09:58 AM

The HD25 can't deliver the actual lumens it is rated for when showing color content.

No projector will work outdoors during the daytime in the shade. The lighting out there is far higher than anything indoors is typical to expect. It must be after sunset usage no matter what.

The 1080ST is the same as the W1070, but you will always need a very flat screen. Any flaws in the screen with a short throw projector like the 1080 will have serious image issues. That's why a bit longer throw with the W1070 is a better way to go.

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