Is a $30k projector really worth it?

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Projectors are the latest devices to see all-over innovation. They're getting smaller in size, larger in projection, and even smarter with integrated Amazon Alexa. But, are they worth the price?

  • Projectors are hitting headlines with some incredible innovation. The MirraViz screen allows viewers to watch different content on the same screen simultaneously.

When you imagine upgrading your home entertainment systems, a projector is the first thing that comes to mind. Over the years, things have changed massively in the world of projectors. Everything from technology to specs has improved and, somehow, they have even gone down in size to fit any space.

Early projectors

Early projectors

In fact, now there are projectors that can fit in the palm of your hand.

Pico projectors offer great portability

Pico projectors offer great portability

That may be what’s driving consumers to buy more projectors compared to getting large screen TVs. The reasons are obvious. Projectors make it easy for us to get that massive screen anywhere we want. Even if it’s a camping site or your backyard, you can still manage to display The Last Jedi or Jumanji in brilliant color. In fact, Amy Lessig, ‪National Training and Execution Manager at Hisense, said at CES 2018 that “[t]he future of television is panel-less.” On one hand, we feel that projectors are getting better and better every day. But, on the other hand, are they too expensive for what you get? After all, they all do the same thing, right?

$30k for a projector – ahead of the curve or stupid?

Short throw laser projectors are the latest thing to replace your TV. But dropping $30,000 on one sounds irrational. A smart TV comes with a much smaller price tag and is loaded with technology. Nevertheless, there must be a reason for that insane pricing. We dug deep into one of the Sony 4K short-throw projectors, and here’s what we learned.

  1. Unlike most other projectors, short throw technology allows you to get a massive projection even from a short distance. These projectors sit exactly where your TV would sit but they give you the same large display you’d get from a projector in the center of the room.
  2. There are organic glass tubes to create the sound effect you usually find in theaters. This is an interesting feature that really sets projectors apart from TVs.
  3. One notable feature of these projectors is the 2500 lumen laser projection. It offers stunning brightness to really deliver that theater experience.
Short-Throw projection

Short-Throw projection technology

But, the question still remains the same. Is all of that worth $30,000? With those features, you do get a movie theater-like experience at home. But, you’d have to be an avid moviegoer in order to see an ROI. Spending that much money on just a projector system is insane considering you need to supplement with audio systems and peripherals. For those who live in a studio or smaller apartments, it’s even more superfluous. These projectors require lots of wall space to deliver the full image.

Sony 4K laser projector

Sony 4K laser projector

However, with need comes innovation. The latest from Epson is a 4K short-throw projector that comes in at literally 1/4th of the price. Hopefully, this drop in pricing will be the impetus for other brands to follow suit.

Is any projector worth the hype?

It’s no secret we’ve got a thing for Amazon Alexa and all the convenience she brings. If a projector can also listen to our Alexa commands, that’s certainly worth a try. Optoma’s 4K projector does just that. It’s $1,700 and complete with Alexa, a 120-inch screen projection, and 4K resolution. It’s quite affordable when you consider all of these features.

If you’re more of a gamer and love projectors to view your games on the big screen, MirraViz is made for you. The beauty of this system lies in the fact that it shows two screens at one time. So, gamers can play two different games simultaneously and still view the entire big screen. Pricing starts at just $699.

What’s the future of projectors?

Along with advancement in laser projection, we’ll also definitely see more compact sizes. Laser projectors are usually very heavy and bringing them down to a portable size is a huge challenge. If someone made that kind of a system under $2,000, we’re looking at a flourishing industry. As of now, $30,000 is a bit too much.

The Gadget Flow Daily Digest highlights and explores the latest in tech trends to keep you informed. Want it straight to your inbox? Subscribe now.

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Meet Ashley Timms

Ashley Timms is the Editor in Chief at Gadget Flow where she gets to write about the most incredible products in the world. When she’s not writing, she’s producing fine art dog photography.

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