The projector is a very useful device for meeting rooms or training, in its fixed or transportable versions, but also in the lighter versions, called portable, for commercial forces on the move. So when it comes to choosing a model, it is first necessary to determine what will be the use, in which room (s) it will be located, to finally tackle the technical characteristics.
What Use For The Outdoor HD Projector?
The desired use of anoutdoor hd projector will determine the type of model for which to opt. If it must accompany the salespeople in their presentation to a prospect or a customer, then it is essential that it is designed to be nomadic. Lighter, with a suitable connector, it will be a companion easy to move. If the projector is intended to stay in the business, but must regularly change rooms, then we will opt for a transportable model. A little heavier and cumbersome, it is also equipped with superior capabilities. Finally, if the video projector is to be fixed in a room, it is then possible to move towards a model dedicated to this use.
In What Type of Room Will It Be Used?
A video projector must always be chosen according to the environment in which it will be used. And this for many reasons. The size of the room will determine the luminous power of the device, as well as the possibility to make black or not. Indeed, a projection in daylight will require a more powerful video projector than for a projection in a dark room.
What Surface Will It Project On?
For the sake of economy, the temptation to project the image directly on a white wall is great. But this is a practice to avoid. The rendering of light, like colors, is greatly altered. The projection screens are specifically designed to maximize image quality and improve their readability. Also, there is no point in investing in a high quality projector, if you do not have a suitable screen. In this case, it is better to reduce your purchase budget of the device and use the savings made to buy a screen.
Help With Choice: The Main Criteria for Choosing an outdoor Projector
Mobile or Fixed
This is a basic criterion. The mobile models are of course lighter (less than 2 kg) and more compact, so easier to carry in a bag. But their specialization does not stop there. Since they also have useful functions on the move such as a faster ignition, integrated speakers, but also a suitable connection, including USB connections that allow them to use a simple USB key without necessarily using his laptop.
For fixed or portable use, most video projectors can do the trick.
The goal here is not to engage in a broad debate about the best video projection technology. To put it simply, there are two main ones: the LCD and the DLP. For professional use, it is better to opt for an LCD model, or its evolution the TRI-LCD, which offer the best quality / price ratio and more compact devices. DLP technology, which provides better contrast is rather recommended for home theater systems.
This is a criterion of importance. The basic principle is that the distance of the projector from the screen and the brightness of the room are the two main factors of image degradation. It is therefore according to these two criteria that the brightness of the apparatus must be chosen. It is measured in lumens. If a 1000 lumens projector is suitable for a meeting room in the dark, for a medium-sized illuminated room (up to 30 m²), 1500 lumens are a minimum. And for a larger room, then you have to opt for a projector of 2,500 to 3,000 lumens, depending on the degree of ambient lighting. It should be remembered that most of the time, the projector needs to work in a room bright enough to allow note taking.
Contrast is the difference between dark colors and light colors. There, it is better not to skimp to make sure to project a quality image. A contrast ratio of 1000: 1 seems a good compromise to make sure that the last PowerPoint presentation is effective.
The resolution is the number of dots (pixels) that the image will use to display. At most there is, the higher the resolution is fine and the image of good quality. There are several such as SVGA 800 x 600 pixels in 4: 3 format. This is the basis. To project office documents, the XGA resolution (1024 x 768) is sufficient. However, if you also want to broadcast videos or movies, then you must opt for a device that meets the standards Full HD or HD Ready.
The Size of the Image
Beyond the capabilities of the projector, the size of the image will first depend on the room where it will be located. A fairly simple calculation makes it possible to get an idea. Measure the height of the room, then remove a meter (which is the height of the screen from the floor to avoid obstructions that could obstruct the field of view). You then have the maximum height of your screen. Then, depending on whether you want to use your projector in 4: 3 or 16: 9, simply multiply the height of the screen by a factor of 1.33 and 1.79 for the width. Ex: for a height of 2 meters in diffusion 4: 3, the width will be 2 × 1.33 = 2.66 meters.
Some projectors have interchangeable lenses that allow the projector to be placed in various areas of the room.
THE VGA CONNECTOR
This is the most used socket that allows you to connect your computer (via the integrated graphics card) and the video projector.
THE DVI INPUT
This jack offers a video quality significantly higher than the VGA (sharper and better colors), and allows you to transmit video streams from your computer to your projection device.
HDMI is a standard and fully digital audio / video interface that can connect an audio / video source (DVD player, Blu-ray, computer, etc.) to a broadcast device (HD TV, video projector).
This analog connector connects the video projector to video equipment (camcorders, graphics cards with a TV output, etc.).
More and more present on the projectors, the USB port makes it possible to diffuse the contents of a USB key without resorting to a computer.
To Take Into Account in Your Purchase Decision
To work, the projectors use a lamp with limited life. Depending on the model, the price is in a range of 200 to 500 €, which is not trivial. Also, check the life of the lamp announced by the manufacturer, it can go from 1,000 to 6,000 hours. Knowing that, on average, it is around 3,000 hours.
A video projector is not silent. The fan or fans used to cool it make noise. The latter is measured in decibel (dB). Below 30 dB, the noise is barely audible. Attention, when you choose, manufacturers indicate a sound level corresponding to use in economic mode. Also check the sound level in standard use to avoid having a bad surprise.
To Decide: Make Your Choice According To Your Needs
Mobile usage: Use in multiple rooms fixed usage
If your projector needs to leave the company walls regularly, then a portable LCD model is the best (and only) choice possible. On the shelf are very compact and light models, more or less efficient. Think of useful functions on the move such as USB, or built-in speakers.
- If your main criterion is the price, know that we find the first models, in SVGA resolution around 350 €.
- If your main criterion is the quality, then it is better to opt for a minimum resolution XVGA, whose models start around 500 € to go up to 1 500 €. In any case, the resolution should not make us forget the other selection criteria mentioned in the article: brightness, contrast, etc.
Many models correspond to this use. Their weight is between 2 and 4 kg, so they can be transported from one room to another without much difficulty. If the projector needs to change rooms often, to simplify the process, you may have to go to a Wi-Fi model, which allows access to all documents in the corporate network without connection.
- If your main criterion is the price, know that there are models in SVGA resolution from 400 €.
- If your main criterion is the quality, then it is better to opt for a minimum resolution XVGA, whose models start around € 600 to € 1,500.
In any case, the resolution should not make us forget the other selection criteria mentioned in the article: brightness, contrast, etc.
In this case, take the time to find the projector “perfectly” sized for the room that will accommodate it. It is also necessary to consider a suitable fastening system. In some cases, the use of specialized installation companies may be useful.
- If your main criterion is the price, the XVGA LCD models (between 500 and 1500 €) will be a wise choice. A good compromise, it will be necessary to decorate with a luminosity adapted to your environment.
- If your main criterion is quality, it is better to opt for a higher-end model, which will provide excellent visibility in all conditions. Prices start at around € 1,500 to go up to € 5,000 for models reserved for intensive use.