projectors on a budget

N

nolukjustskil

Enthusiast
so my plan is to build a ~100inch screen, and then buy a 250-300$ projector (VANKYO Performance V630). the reviews ive seen say its pretty good for the price (yes i know more expensive would be better). but this is just to get into projectors and see if its something we want to keep or upgrade in the future. if anyone knows of a better projector for around that price point please let me know. and i can go over that budget, and only will if someones says like this projector for 400$ is 10x better than that vankyo, but like i said i want to start kinda cheap and upgrade in the future. im a budget shopper, i like getting the best bang for my buck.
thank you so much for your help and i hope you have a great day!
.
 
M

Movie2099

Full Audioholic
so my plan is to build a ~100inch screen, and then buy a 250-300$ projector (VANKYO Performance V630). the reviews ive seen say its pretty good for the price (yes i know more expensive would be better). but this is just to get into projectors and see if its something we want to keep or upgrade in the future. if anyone knows of a better projector for around that price point please let me know. and i can go over that budget, and only will if someones says like this projector for 400$ is 10x better than that vankyo, but like i said i want to start kinda cheap and upgrade in the future. im a budget shopper, i like getting the best bang for my buck.
thank you so much for your help and i hope you have a great day!
.
When you say "future" how long is the future from right now? Usually with Audio/Video you want to try and purchase the best you can now so you don't have to always keep upgrading every year or two and blowing all that money on cheap stuff early on when you could've just purchased something good right away and then upgrade 5-8 years down the road. I would suggest upping that projector budget to at least $1k. At least in that price point you can find a pretty solid faux 4k projector. Check out Epson projectors. Lots to choose from.
 
TheWarrior

TheWarrior

Audioholic Ninja
How are you building the screen? I would think some the internet direct options would ultimately be cheaper.

I have a perforated or "acoustically transparent" Stewart that looks just as good as the wall that I sanded the heck out of and painted in another room - went through multiple attempts, paints, even tried furniture wax at one point too.

Epson is an easy recommendation because they manufacture their own lamps as well so they are MUCH cheaper than most any other brand. But as stated above, a cheap projector is just a cheap projector. It's not going to look that good.
 
N

nolukjustskil

Enthusiast
How are you building the screen? I would think some the internet direct options would ultimately be cheaper.

I have a perforated or "acoustically transparent" Stewart that looks just as good as the wall that I sanded the heck out of and painted in another room - went through multiple attempts, paints, even tried furniture wax at one point too.

Epson is an easy recommendation because they manufacture their own lamps as well so they are MUCH cheaper than most any other brand. But as stated above, a cheap projector is just a cheap projector. It's not going to look that good.
something like this, https://www.carlofet.com/shop/projector-screen-material?screen_material=FlexiWhite&finished_edge=Raw+Material&seam=Seamless&packaging=Rolled+on+a+Tube&aspect_ratio=16:9&size=145"+(71x126)
only 90$ and i can build a frame for the screen to sit on. and i know cheap projectors are cheap, i just want something that would look good enough, but still be cheap, for us to decide if we want to do a better projector (in a year or 2) or just buy a new TV.
 
TheWarrior

TheWarrior

Audioholic Ninja
something like this, https://www.carlofet.com/shop/projector-screen-material?screen_material=FlexiWhite&finished_edge=Raw+Material&seam=Seamless&packaging=Rolled+on+a+Tube&aspect_ratio=16:9&size=145"+(71x126)
only 90$ and i can build a frame for the screen to sit on. and i know cheap projectors are cheap, i just want something that would look good enough, but still be cheap, for us to decide if we want to do a better projector (in a year or 2) or just buy a new TV.
I went kinda the same route with an Epson 2045 and a painted wall. Worked Beautifully. Moved that to the bedroom and got an Epson 3100 and have been quite happy with that on the same wall after some trial and error til I got a FLAT surface. Getting the vinyl to sit cleanly on a wood frame is going to be a PITA. And a frame that big will be pretty heavy, too!

The picture size is my main reason for loving projection. I don't watch much TV but my wife swears by the big screen, now. I'm much more in to movies and games and it's hard to beat - and these aren't even 4K projectors.

But they do need to be refocused occasionally, they have air filters to clean, can need crazy long HDMI cables, can have weird picture/color anomalies, and short of the $5k+ JVC's, will not have quite as good of a picture as some 65" OLED I've seen. But the picture size, for me, is waaaay more worthwhile. I personally cannot fathom having to deal with these 80+" TV's, their boxes, and some day needing to pay to dispose of them.
 
N

nolukjustskil

Enthusiast
I went kinda the same route with an Epson 2045 and a painted wall. Worked Beautifully. Moved that to the bedroom and got an Epson 3100 and have been quite happy with that on the same wall after some trial and error til I got a FLAT surface. Getting the vinyl to sit cleanly on a wood frame is going to be a PITA. And a frame that big will be pretty heavy, too!

The picture size is my main reason for loving projection. I don't watch much TV but my wife swears by the big screen, now. I'm much more in to movies and games and it's hard to beat - and these aren't even 4K projectors.

But they do need to be refocused occasionally, they have air filters to clean, can need crazy long HDMI cables, can have weird picture/color anomalies, and short of the $5k+ JVC's, will not have quite as good of a picture as some 65" OLED I've seen. But the picture size, for me, is waaaay more worthwhile. I personally cannot fathom having to deal with these 80+" TV's, their boxes, and some day needing to pay to dispose of them.
yeah, thats kinda the way i feel about it. like yeah will it be as pretty as a 65" oled? no but if its 100" and looks good then ill be uber happy. i dont think the frame would be that heavy, ive watched a few DIY people do it on youtube and they move it around themselves with no issue. heres one of the better ones if you want to watch.
 
TheWarrior

TheWarrior

Audioholic Ninja
yeah, thats kinda the way i feel about it. like yeah will it be as pretty as a 65" oled? no but if its 100" and looks good then ill be uber happy. i dont think the frame would be that heavy, ive watched a few DIY people do it on youtube and they move it around themselves with no issue. heres one of the better ones if you want to watch.
Totally! My buddy has an LG that was just gorgeous to watch on, but cost more than both of my PJ's and cannot come close to the experience of an 8ft screen.

Yeah if building the frame works for you, go for it! Looks like a well thought out process in the video, but I might skip the background lighting.
 
N

nolukjustskil

Enthusiast
Totally! My buddy has an LG that was just gorgeous to watch on, but cost more than both of my PJ's and cannot come close to the experience of an 8ft screen.

Yeah if building the frame works for you, go for it! Looks like a well thought out process in the video, but I might skip the background lighting.
yeah i would for sure skip the backlight too.
 
BMXTRIX

BMXTRIX

Audioholic Spartan
Building a GOOD screen with a proper black (velvet) border takes a lot of work, but certainly is an option. Just painting your wall is fine as well. It all depends on the quality you are hoping to achieve from the final product. I think the border adds a TON of punch to the image, so that's something I certainly would recommend. I would not do it with just a 'white canvas' screen without any trim.

You should also build a screen that is appropriate for the room. Not sure your viewing distance, but plan for at a minimum of 10" of diagonal for each foot of viewing distance.

You spend a lot of time talking about what you want to do, but not about the room it is going into, what your seating distance is, what the lighting situation in the room is, what color the walls are, or much else. These are some of the most important factors when deciding on both a projector and a screen.

As for a projector, don't buy a piece of crap. The cheap Chinese imports are throw-away technology with warranty support that is typically next to non-existent and image quality which is acceptable, but a LONG way from what proper LCD or DLP projection looks like. Single panel LCD projection SUCKS. Period.

If you are looking for a value oriented projector, then check out the refurb stores for Epson and BenQ. Epson offers the better warranty, but BenQ will have a better projector at the entry level.

Epson is running a bit thin at this time, but keep an eye on their site as new 1080p refurbs come and go on the regular...

The HT1070a, refurbished, is $300. It will KILL any entry level Epson and will decimate Vankyo or other cheap Chinese import crap.

BenQ offers other models with better features as well on the outlet site.

Features you often need, but don't know you need: Decent zoom range, proper lens offset, perhaps lens shift (adds $$$), more resolution ($$$), etc.

So, you need to know what your final setup will look like well before you start buying and building things.

But, yes, 10" of diagonal MINIMUM for each foot of viewing distance. Often 11 or 12 inches of diagonal for some.

I sit 15' from a 162" diagonal image.
 
N

nolukjustskil

Enthusiast
Building a GOOD screen with a proper black (velvet) border takes a lot of work, but certainly is an option. Just painting your wall is fine as well. It all depends on the quality you are hoping to achieve from the final product. I think the border adds a TON of punch to the image, so that's something I certainly would recommend. I would not do it with just a 'white canvas' screen without any trim.

You should also build a screen that is appropriate for the room. Not sure your viewing distance, but plan for at a minimum of 10" of diagonal for each foot of viewing distance.

You spend a lot of time talking about what you want to do, but not about the room it is going into, what your seating distance is, what the lighting situation in the room is, what color the walls are, or much else. These are some of the most important factors when deciding on both a projector and a screen.

As for a projector, don't buy a piece of crap. The cheap Chinese imports are throw-away technology with warranty support that is typically next to non-existent and image quality which is acceptable, but a LONG way from what proper LCD or DLP projection looks like. Single panel LCD projection SUCKS. Period.

If you are looking for a value oriented projector, then check out the refurb stores for Epson and BenQ. Epson offers the better warranty, but BenQ will have a better projector at the entry level.

Epson is running a bit thin at this time, but keep an eye on their site as new 1080p refurbs come and go on the regular...

The HT1070a, refurbished, is $300. It will KILL any entry level Epson and will decimate Vankyo or other cheap Chinese import crap.

BenQ offers other models with better features as well on the outlet site.

Features you often need, but don't know you need: Decent zoom range, proper lens offset, perhaps lens shift (adds $$$), more resolution ($$$), etc.

So, you need to know what your final setup will look like well before you start buying and building things.

But, yes, 10" of diagonal MINIMUM for each foot of viewing distance. Often 11 or 12 inches of diagonal for some.

I sit 15' from a 162" diagonal image.
man, some great info here... where to start... so the room that the projector will be placed in will be white, with limited light. gonna have blackout curtains on any of the windows, plus tv doesnt get watched much until around or after dinner time. the room is roughly 10x14, so seating will be roughly 9-10 ft away from the screen. i figured ~100 inches would be my sweet spot. i cant believe i didnt think about refurbs, i will for sure check out the BenQ projectors, i have a BenQ monitor and i love it, get picture quality, build quality is amazing, couldnt be happier. thank you for all this info, it truly helps out a bunch!
 
allfred

allfred

Enthusiast
In the $400-$500 price range you're looking at some of the better 720p projectors or the least expensive 1080p models. So the first thing to determine is whether or not you can get along with 1280x720 pixels as seen on HD TV or if you want 1920x1080 pixels as seen on Blu-ray and other full HD sources.

For sports, DLP is generally considered better than LCD because DLP has inherently better motion handling so less motion blur in fast moving sports. For movies some prefer DLP and some LCD. DLP tends to be sharper while LCD tends to be more film-like. There are many DLP projector brands but Epson is the only lower cost LCD option.
 
BMXTRIX

BMXTRIX

Audioholic Spartan
man, some great info here... where to start... so the room that the projector will be placed in will be white, with limited light. gonna have blackout curtains on any of the windows, plus tv doesnt get watched much until around or after dinner time. the room is roughly 10x14, so seating will be roughly 9-10 ft away from the screen. i figured ~100 inches would be my sweet spot. i cant believe i didnt think about refurbs, i will for sure check out the BenQ projectors, i have a BenQ monitor and i love it, get picture quality, build quality is amazing, couldnt be happier. thank you for all this info, it truly helps out a bunch!
A 100" screen with a 9'-10' viewing distance should be very good. If you have a white wall currently, then you can 'test fit' different screen sizes before you mount a projector. Just ensure that the projector's throw distance works in your room from the distance you will be at. This is where models like the BenQ HT2050a are very good because they have a medium/short throw. About 1' of throw distance for each foot of diagonal. They are often placed nearly overhead in a typical theater room space.

I always say that if this is a dedicated space, or just a room in your home, if you can paint the room a darker color, it will help significantly with image quality. Blackout shades are a near must during the daytime, but after dark viewing it is the reflections from the wall, and ceiling, which hurts image quality the most. This is often a tough discussion with the wife. I always say that this room, if it is purpose used for TV watching, is okay to be completely different than all the other spaces in your home. It's okay to have a room that is 'dark'. It has a completely different feel than a family room or a bedroom, it's much more relaxing. But, that's your discussion to have and decision to make.

Keep an eye on that BenQ site to see if things come into stock. I haven't seen that happen yet.
 

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