Sub $500 LED projector ... 2000+ lumen? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 03:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Sub $500 LED projector ... 2000+ lumen?

Sorry to rehash a topic discussed before, but wondering if technology has changed enough in the last years that makes the conversation different than in other threads.

So the question is about these LED projectors on [email protected] and elsewhere that are around $200-400 and claiming to be LED and somewhere north of 2000 lumens. It seems crazy and maybe the contrast or quality aren't high but let me explain what we need:

We are an overseas NGO in Ethiopia and often have power cuts. The projector is needed for power points, etc. So we don't need high quality "home theater experience" but need a functional projector for daytime that is durable: meaning that when power cuts and it doesn't get a proper cool-down we aren't going to need to buy $200 bulb replacements. So, that is why I am trying to focus on LED projectors. But now I start to get confused between LED lamps and the "display technology". Again maybe I don't care about the "display technology" as much as long as the lamp itself is LED.

What is strange is seeing all the "no name" projectors at the above site for around $200. Is there no brand name in this category of projector besides Pyle, which seems to get mixed reviews but at least has some sort of customer support? Again I don't need great image quality, just need something that isn't going to suffer under power cuts. So in the $500 max range what direction do I go? Pyle? Other?


Thanks for any help,

Rik
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post #2 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 03:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rik Shaw View Post
Sorry to rehash a topic discussed before, but wondering if technology has changed enough in the last years that makes the conversation different than in other threads.

So the question is about these LED projectors on [email protected] and elsewhere that are around $200-400 and claiming to be LED and somewhere north of 2000 lumens. It seems crazy and maybe the contrast or quality aren't high but let me explain what we need:

We are an overseas NGO in Ethiopia and often have power cuts. The projector is needed for power points, etc. So we don't need high quality "home theater experience" but need a functional projector for daytime that is durable: meaning that when power cuts and it doesn't get a proper cool-down we aren't going to need to buy $200 bulb replacements. So, that is why I am trying to focus on LED projectors. But now I start to get confused between LED lamps and the "display technology". Again maybe I don't care about the "display technology" as much as long as the lamp itself is LED.

What is strange is seeing all the "no name" projectors at the above site for around $200. Is there no brand name in this category of projector besides Pyle, which seems to get mixed reviews but at least has some sort of customer support? Again I don't need great image quality, just need something that isn't going to suffer under power cuts. So in the $500 max range what direction do I go? Pyle? Other?


Thanks for any help,

Rik
Most of these PJs project images that are much dimmer than the advertised lumens, and many of them have poor quality optical systems which lead to the corners of the image being dark and unfocused. I think they would be a false economy, go for a brand with a reputation to protect.
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post #3 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 04:57 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rik Shaw View Post
Sorry to rehash a topic discussed before, but wondering if technology has changed enough in the last years that makes the conversation different than in other threads.

So the question is about these LED projectors on [email protected] and elsewhere that are around $200-400 and claiming to be LED and somewhere north of 2000 lumens. It seems crazy and maybe the contrast or quality aren't high but let me explain what we need:

We are an overseas NGO in Ethiopia and often have power cuts. The projector is needed for power points, etc. So we don't need high quality "home theater experience" but need a functional projector for daytime that is durable: meaning that when power cuts and it doesn't get a proper cool-down we aren't going to need to buy $200 bulb replacements. So, that is why I am trying to focus on LED projectors. But now I start to get confused between LED lamps and the "display technology". Again maybe I don't care about the "display technology" as much as long as the lamp itself is LED.

What is strange is seeing all the "no name" projectors at the above site for around $200. Is there no brand name in this category of projector besides Pyle, which seems to get mixed reviews but at least has some sort of customer support? Again I don't need great image quality, just need something that isn't going to suffer under power cuts. So in the $500 max range what direction do I go? Pyle? Other?


Thanks for any help,

Rik
I have one of those no-name LED projectors (Excelvan 720d), and it does a surprisingly nice job for the price. However the lumens are projected lumens, and are not measured the same as regular projectors are. Mine says 3000 lumens but it definitely isn't brighter than my other more expensive projector. These extreme budget projectors don't have enough brightness to stand on their own in a day-lit room as you require, so you'll have to make sure that the room is as dark as possible by drawing the curtains and closing out as much sunlight as possible, or use a grey screen like I have. Take a look at the attachment comparing the video in a day-lit room with the curtains open and closed. You can see that the grey screen really helps. Also, due to its lower brightness, it's best not to put this thing too far from the screen. At night, it's fine.

The LED is rated for years of use, but because it's so cheap I would literally laugh my head off if it can last that long. Basically, because of the low price of the projector it's practically worry free and no huge loss if something goes wrong. Dealing with power cuts shouldn't be a problem with this projector. I switch this thing on and off all the time and it's still working fine. I even leave it on overnight several times because I fell asleep while watching movies.

The best way to really check the picture quality of these sub $200 projectors is to go on youtube and find as many video samples and see for yourself.

Look at reviews of top 10 budget projectors, or best projector for under $200. That's what I did and I ended up with the Excelvan. Some people's experience may vary, so get on amazon then get on youtube to find video samples and see if they can back it up. You can ask the reviewers all the questions you want and I'm sure they'll be happy to help you.

Don't worry too much about the naysayers scaring you into trying to pay more for other projectors unless your budget can really support paying more. You really need to set aside a bit of money to get everything right if you want theater-like quality. This means the right projector, paying more for replacement lamps, higher running costs etc.
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post #4 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 01:06 PM
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If you are a prudent person who hates taking a chance on getting ripped off, it's best to stick with proven products from established name brands. Even though Pyle is an established name its LED projectors are not highly rated. Brands like AAXA and LG will provide you with a better chance for a positive experience.

If you are a gambler in search of a great bargain who can live with ending up with a piece of crap, feel free to roll the dice. Either way, the following article at projectorcentral.com will give you an idea of how bad it can get:

Cheap Projectors -- how bad are they?
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post #5 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 02:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rik Shaw View Post
Sorry to rehash a topic discussed before, but wondering if technology has changed enough in the last years that makes the conversation different than in other threads.

So the question is about these LED projectors on [email protected] and elsewhere that are around $200-400 and claiming to be LED and somewhere north of 2000 lumens. It seems crazy and maybe the contrast or quality aren't high but let me explain what we need:

We are an overseas NGO in Ethiopia and often have power cuts. The projector is needed for power points, etc. So we don't need high quality "home theater experience" but need a functional projector for daytime that is durable: meaning that when power cuts and it doesn't get a proper cool-down we aren't going to need to buy $200 bulb replacements. So, that is why I am trying to focus on LED projectors. But now I start to get confused between LED lamps and the "display technology". Again maybe I don't care about the "display technology" as much as long as the lamp itself is LED.

What is strange is seeing all the "no name" projectors at the above site for around $200. Is there no brand name in this category of projector besides Pyle, which seems to get mixed reviews but at least has some sort of customer support? Again I don't need great image quality, just need something that isn't going to suffer under power cuts. So in the $500 max range what direction do I go? Pyle? Other?


Thanks for any help,

Rik
Chances are you will not get a quality LED projector in the lower than 500 range unless you can get a old stock LG. If you see single TFT screen or something that says 640x480 or 800x600 RUN. these single screens are basically a GPS screen with a cheap LED behind them and you will get a washed out image find the model number you are looking at and go on youtube and you can see just how generally horrible they are.
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post #6 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 02:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rik Shaw View Post
Sorry to rehash a topic discussed before, but wondering if technology has changed enough in the last years that makes the conversation different than in other threads.

So the question is about these LED projectors on [email protected] and elsewhere that are around $200-400 and claiming to be LED and somewhere north of 2000 lumens. It seems crazy and maybe the contrast or quality aren't high but let me explain what we need:

We are an overseas NGO in Ethiopia and often have power cuts. The projector is needed for power points, etc. So we don't need high quality "home theater experience" but need a functional projector for daytime that is durable: meaning that when power cuts and it doesn't get a proper cool-down we aren't going to need to buy $200 bulb replacements. So, that is why I am trying to focus on LED projectors. But now I start to get confused between LED lamps and the "display technology". Again maybe I don't care about the "display technology" as much as long as the lamp itself is LED.

What is strange is seeing all the "no name" projectors at the above site for around $200. Is there no brand name in this category of projector besides Pyle, which seems to get mixed reviews but at least has some sort of customer support? Again I don't need great image quality, just need something that isn't going to suffer under power cuts. So in the $500 max range what direction do I go? Pyle? Other?


Thanks for any help,

Rik
Maybe this will give you an idea about how a single screen panel works
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post #7 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 02:43 PM
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Maybe this will give you an idea about how a single screen panel works https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CxLvzuF7Wu4
Even better
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post #8 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 03:03 PM
 
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Chances are you will not get a quality LED projector in the lower than 500 range unless you can get a old stock LG. If you see single TFT screen or something that says 640x480 or 800x600 RUN. these single screens are basically a GPS screen with a cheap LED behind them and you will get a washed out image find the model number you are looking at and go on youtube and you can see just how generally horrible they are.
That may be true for now given that LED projectors are relatively young in technology and not everyone is using it, but these are only sub $200 projectors so expectations are a lot lower. If you're not open minded and you expect more then it's not for you, move on and buy something else. All these teardowns are very intriguing technically, and would appropriately be a good challenge for anyone who can piece together a better product for under $200 Otherwise, this practice of "hey watch me tear down this cheap thing to show you how bad it is and I can't put it back together again" thing is just low level entertainment and doesn't really help anybody.
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post #9 of 13 Old 02-01-2017, 10:02 PM
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Rik, let's take a step back and try to understand the basics. Do you have any past experience with front projection? If not, you may not know that using a projector in the daytime requires a lot of lumens and no LED projector currently on the market produces a lot of lumens.

Where do you plan to use the projector in the daytime, inside a building where you can draw the shades or in a really bright environment without any light control? How large an image do you need to throw? The bigger the image the more lumens you need.

Epson has some very bright lamp-based portable projectors that produce an honest 3,000 lumens and do not require cool down. With Epson's Instant Off feature you can turn it off and unplug it right away as the fan doesn't have to run to cool the lamp. So in the event of a power failure the lamp would not be damaged. One of these would produce a much brighter image than any LED model.
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post #10 of 13 Old 02-02-2017, 07:44 AM
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That may be true for now given that LED projectors are relatively young in technology and not everyone is using it, but these are only sub $200 projectors so expectations are a lot lower. If you're not open minded and you expect more then it's not for you, move on and buy something else. All these teardowns are very intriguing technically, and would appropriately be a good challenge for anyone who can piece together a better product for under $200 Otherwise, this practice of "hey watch me tear down this cheap thing to show you how bad it is and I can't put it back together again" thing is just low level entertainment and doesn't really help anybody.
ahhhh, Sorry but there are all kinds of chincy projectors on the market that produce poor quality images, I was just showing a newbie what to look out for and why
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The transmissivity on that 800x480 LCD looks quite good, actually. Probably due to higher aperture (low DPI screens let more light through)
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post #12 of 13 Old 02-02-2017, 11:46 AM
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Ya'all may want to watch his as it describes the way a three panel LCD Projector functions. The down side is that with the older models you have organic panels ( usually the blue one) that break down . The newer higher end ones are inorganic and are supposed to last muck longer
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post #13 of 13 Old 02-02-2017, 12:42 PM
 
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ahhhh, Sorry but there are all kinds of chincy projectors on the market that produce poor quality images, I was just showing a newbie what to look out for and why
Sure, but if you have time to show videos of what bad projectors look like at this price and specs then you should also have time to look for better ones at this price because that is what OP is looking for. Youtube has a vast amount of information to support this.
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