Finding the best home theater projector to make your home a small movie theater and enjoy relaxing time together with your family? Check this article out!
If you are in two minds about buying the best home theater projector, we confirm that it is very helpful and well-worth!
The projectors are good for home entertainment.
You can build an in-house cinema at home and enjoy your favorite blockbuster. Don’t bother going to the movie theaters and queuing forever for buying tickets and snacks!
Moreover, quality projectors are better for your eyes than a TV thanks to many features like the LCD, DLP, adjusted brightness, etc.
Best Home Theater Projector – List of 10 Reviews
For those who are asking “what is the best home theater project?”, we provide all reviews of the top-choice models at different prices and with packages of features for your reference.
DR. J Professional HI-04 Mini Projector – Best for Movie Nights
J Professional HI-04 Mini Projector
DR. J Professional HI-04 Mini Projector is the most preferred home theater projector on the market. Although the device does not provide ultra picture quality, it maintains a balance of price point and is acceptable beyond viewing in a completely dark environment.
Our first impression of the projector is its run-of-the-mill compact size (about 7.8 x 2.7 x 6.02 inches). You can easily place it room by room and also for traveling.
The operation is straightforward since all controls and connectivity options are visible on the top of the tool. Meanwhile, the keynote adjustments and dials are available right behind. It is possible to connect and transfer videos from VGA, HDMI, USB ports, if any.
It is worth noticing that the maximum motion resolution is 1080 x 1920. Most input materials will be automatically downscaled to the native 840 x 480 though. Still, the images are wonderful, with full HD and vivid colors.
The display, nonetheless, is easily “bright white-washed” due to the light leakage in ambient situations.
- [100Inch Projector Screen Included] PORTABLE LED VIDEO PROJECTOR: To meet our customer's new needs, DR.J has improved not only the brightness, contrast ratio of the projector, but also included a 100" Portable Projector Screen in the package. Enjoy the great movies outside with your family in your yard.
- HIGHEST 1080P RESOLUTIONS SUPPORTED: Supported resolution:1920*1080, Aspect Ratio: 4:3/16:9, Contrast Ratio: 2000:1, Lamp lifetime: 40000 hours, Watching Size: 32”-176” with projector distance 1.5m-5m. [Note: not recommended for PPT, word, excel or business presentation.]
- Affordable projector
- Lightweight and compact size
- Clear and full-HD resolution
- Long-lasting batteries for 4000 hours
- Possible light leakage
- Not 3D supported
GRC Mini Projector 1080P HD – Best Budget Home Theater Projector
GRC Mini Projector 1080P HD
Also labeled as a mini projector, GRC Mini Projector 1080P HD is an alternative to the DR. J Professional HI-04 for small rooms on a tight budget.
Accordingly, you can set up the projector to be 1 to 5m away from the screen to get a projection size from 32 to 200 inches based on your available space.
The native resolution is lower than the first model, which is only 800 x 480. This rate is enough for small rooms to ensure a lively viewing; meanwhile, you can save more battery life for later use. It is more exciting to know that the lamp life is up to 4500 hours.
We also appreciate internal speakers to help control the sound quality and level shock in a small area.
The limited brightness, again, is the drawback of most mini projectors. In other words, the GRC 1080P HD is only good for dark situations.
- 【1080p High Definition Performance】 This mini projector equipped with 3000:1 contrast ratio, supported 1080p resolution. It can play ultra-clear movies smoothly. The projection distance is 1 to 5 meters and the projection size is 32 to 200 inches. It can meet the projection needs of different occasions.
- 【Multi-interface Compatibility】 It includes HDMI/USB/TF/AV/VGA interfaces. Whether it is a computer, game host, smartphones, TV or DVD player, It can be perfectly compatible with GRC projector. There are four projection modes (Front, back, Hang, desktop). there is always a way for you to have your own home theater system.
- Among the most budget models
- Portable construction
- Good picture and audio output
- Durable lamp life
- Limited brightness
- Bad remote control
ViewSonic PA503S 3800 Lumens Brightness SVGA – Best for Bright Rooms
ViewSonic PA503S 3800 Lumens Brightness SVGA
The options above are excellent for enjoying movies in a dark room. Nevertheless, what if you prefer daylight viewing? Go for ViewSonic 3800 Lumens SVGA, then.
This projector is a powerhouse including 3800 Lumens, meaning it can compete with the natural ambient light and project the source materials to different screen sizes for you to see finer details. It would be even better if its native resolution were higher (800 x 600p) and with the full HD.
To make it up, the ViewSonic PA503S comes with an option for 3D film connectivity – as long as you have appropriate 3D glasses and a Blu-Ray player device.
Another selling point of this projector is the budget-friendly price and eco-friendly features.
The lamp lasts for 4500 hours at the normal performance, or you might even turn on the Eco Mode, consisting of the auto-sleep timer, low-power Sleep Mode, and auto-Shutoff. As a result, you can preserve up to 15000 hours.
We do not like the speakers, though. They are small so that you might miss out on the whispering conversations of characters.
- Versatile projector: Advanced visual features ideal for use in education and small business environments
- Big screen projection: Projects 120 inches from 15-feet 8-inches in 3800 lumens
- Small and entry-level projector
- Powerful 3600 lumens
- Built-to-last lamp life
- Eco-friendly modes available
- Low resolution
- Need of external speakers
Jinhoo M8-TPA Projector – Best LED Projector
Projector Jinhoo Excellent Home Theater
Compared to the projectors above, Jinhoo M8-TPA Projector is a step up thanks to its higher native aspect ratio. It is 1280 x 720p resolution with 1920 x 1080p supported also.
Besides, this device offers 80% brighter images than the models at its price range. The contrast ratio is 2000:1; thus, the focus and keystone adjustment is also improved.
Another plus is the built-in speaker equipped with noise reduction technology. You can now expect the sound is clearer and more enjoyable with this item.
We also want to mention that the Projector Jinhoo Home Theater is Wifi-enabled. All settings and connectives are well-presented on the streaming apps, meaning that you can set it up without any professional expertise. The operation via Wifi is supposed to be stable as well.
The brightness of 2400 lumens is still not high for lighting conditions. And that is what to complain about this projector.
- ★ 【Convenient WiFi & USB Connection】 Connecting deivces with our wifi projector through wifi or usb cable directly. 2020 we have updated TWO things to make it friendly user: (1) Updated the wifi connection steps, make it easier and more stable; (2) Updated the usb connection, synchronize your smartphone by USB cable direcrly, both for android and ios system, without any extra HDMI adapter. So own our wifi projector, you can enjoy it anytime anywhere, it makes your life easier and happier
- ★【THREE Added Bonus---Better than others】 (1) UPDATED BRIGHTNESS: Our 5500L is more real than others. It is much brighter than 99% mini projectors. (2) UPDATED NATIVE RESOLUTION: our wifi mini projector's native resolution is 1280*720P, with 1920x1080P supported, better than 90% mini projectors which are native 480P. (3) UPDATED ACCESSORIES: Projector with screen, it packed with 100" Portable projector screen for our customers' Daily home theater use.
- Higher resolution
- Brighter images at the prices
- Clearer built-in speakers
- Wifi connectivity enabled
- Not for ambient situations
- Not durable over time
VANKYO LEISURE 3 Mini Projector – Best for Long Movies
VANKYO LEISURE 3 Mini Projector
Supposing that you are on holiday, you might want to stick yourself at home watching as many films as possible. Make sure that your projector has a durable built-in battery enough for your demands. If you do not have any name in mind, we suggest VANKYO LEISURE 3.
The lamp life is up to 40000 hours of operation, and there is an innovative cooling system to disperse the heat.
Other features, nonetheless, are not very different from some models introduced earlier. The projector has a single-chip LCD in distributing the light sources up to 1080p and naturally downscale to 800 x 480p.
All in all, it is good for common film display purposes. However, you need to pick up the distance manually because there is no zoom function available.
- SUPERIOR WATCHING EXPERIENCE: Leisure 3 Projector is Powered by MStar Advanced Color Engine. 2018 upgraded LED lighting provides +40% brightness than ordinary projector. Supporting 1920x1080 resolution, 2000:1 contrast ration which is ideal for home entertainment. Not recommend for PowerPoint or other office presentation.
- MULTIMEDIA PORTABLE PROJECTOR: VANKYO Leisure 3 projectors is fit for playing videos, TV series, photos sharing, football matches etc. It can be easily connected with your smartphone, PS3, PS4, X-Box ONE or Wii to enjoy BIG games. A customized bag is designed for you to carry and store it easily.
- Compact design
- Acceptable picture display
- Built-in fan system
- Long hours of lamp life
- No image size zoom
- Limited resolution
Optoma HD146X High Performance – Best Picture-Quality Projector
Optoma HD146X High Performance
Next on the list is HD146X High Performance, which is provided by one of the most reliable brands in the industry known for quality DLP and LED projectors. This projector is a DLP single-chip version.
The device provides bright and sequentially color images toward the screen using tiny mirrors and advanced Dynamic Black Levels Technology. You can even adjust the lamp output to improve the contrast ratio according to the nearby environment.
There is even a gaming mode supposing that you desire to have some video games between the movie time. The input response time is less than 16 ms, so you will not experience any delay or frustrating lost kills. It would be more exciting to have a dedicated gaming monitor.
The sleek modern look is another selling point in comparison with other models. Wherever you plan to settle the projector, it will add a nice touch of an aesthetic household theater.
Its noisy fan ruins the movie theater experience, though. It is even more obvious when you are watching films in small rooms.
- CINEMATIC PICTURE QUALITY: Enjoy crisp, high-definition images with a native 1080p (1920×1080) resolution and an RYGCWB color wheel for home cinema color calibration.
- PERFECT IMAGE ALIGNMENT: With the latest technology from Texas Instruments, the DLP DMD single-chip design ensures perfect image alignment combined with high-brightness for an incredible picture
- Sleek modern look
- High picture quality
- Sequential accurate color gamuts
- Supported gaming projector
- Noisy fan
- Limited input connectivity
Optoma HD28HDR 1080p Projector – Best for 3D Films
Optoma HD28HDR 1080p Projector
Once you look into an Optoma projector, you will want to know more. Obviously, the manufacturer provides the best home theater projector choices on the market. The Optoma HD28HDR is not an exception.
It delivers high contrast and excellent color accuracy, which are required by fans of home movies. When you put the two Optoma machines in comparison, the quality of standard images and videos is nearly similar – although the HD28HDR has an improved resolution.
Nonetheless, if it is an HDR video, you will find the later model’s outstanding difference. It is because the projector supports the HDR videos and 4K inputs.
You can expect advanced features like the earlier projector of Optoma, such as a sleek modern look or gaming mode.
What about disadvantages, does the HD28HDR all good? – Not actually. Its zoom range is limited, leading to fewer placement options.
- NEXT GENERATION TECHNOLOGY: Enjoy clear detailed 1080p (1920×1080) images (with 4K input) and 50,000:1 contrast ratio renders sharp and detailed images from high definition content without downscaling or compression
- HDR COMPATIBLE: HDR10 technology (with 4K input) enables brigher whites and deeper black levels for an enhanced viewing experience
- HDR and 4K support
- Good brightness
- Long lamp life
- Possible to play games
- Not cheap
- Limited zoom range
YABER Y30 Native 1080P Projector – Best Versatility
YABER Y30 Native 1080P Projector
For those wanting a versatile projector for a dedicated home theater and tasks like studying or presenting, we will suggest the YABER Y30.
When unboxing the package, you will find the projector included numerous accessories. They are a power cord, HDMI/VGA/AV cables, a cleaning cloth, and remote control. Thanks to them, you can instantly connect the projector with almost all electronic devices.
The screen zooms are ranging from 45 to 200 inches so that you can invert any images from small to large sizes. Even the vertical and horizontal keystone correction is supported. Besides, the acceptable resolution of 1920 x 1080 and the high brightness of 7000 lumens will provide you with clear images, even in daylight conditions.
We also appreciate that there are glass lenses that are larger and more obvious than other projectors in the range. A soft rubber cover is found as well to protect the lenses from scratches and damage.
Nonetheless, the overall build quality is not excellent, and you had better handle the projector with care.
- ❤[Innovative 4D Keystone Correction & Zoom Function] Our HD projector is the first projector with± 50 ° 4D (vertical & horizontal) keystone correction function to ensure the projected image is always a standard rectangle. It’s very convenient to adjust the screen by using the remote control, especially for the projector suspended from ceiling. Reducing projection size by using the X/Y Zoom function, while others can only do that by changing the projection distance.
- ❤[1080P Native Resolution (1920*1080), Support 4K Video] The projector with a real native resolution of 1920*1080, remarkable 7500L bright and high dynamic contrast ratio of 10000:1, provides sharp and detailed images from HD content without downscaling or compression, which is four times higher than 720p. Combining an innovative high-refraction 5 layers glassed lens, ensuring the best video experience.
- Reasonably-priced projector
- High brightness and resolution
- Multiple supported connectivities
- Glass lenses and lens cover available
- Not good quality build
- A little bulky design
YABER Y31 Native 1920x 1080P Projector – Best Home Theater Projector under 500
YABER Y31 Native 1920x 1080P Projector
With a little more investment, you can consider the YABER Y31 – the upgrade version of Y30. While it is not the best model found on the market, this projector is an affordable bright package.
There are up to 7200 lumens – more than those of Y30, so you can say that for sure that the projector will work well in bright rooms and even ambient outdoor spaces.
In case you are wondering whether such high brightness will run out of battery soon, then no worries. Its lamp life is estimated at 90000 hours and even more under smart usage.
Features like resolution, connectivity, and accessories remain unchanged compared to the previous version.
Unfortunately, the drawbacks are also not fixed, meaning that all parts are not very durable over time. Not to mention, there is a focus issue at the edges of the device.
- 🌻 [Innovative One-Click to Brighten & 4D Keystone Correction Function] Our Y31 hd projector is the first projector with One-Click to Brighten function and Auto Vertical Correction. With manually ± 50° 4D (Vertical & Horizontal) Keystone Correction, One-Click Restore & -25% zoom function, very convenient to adjust the screen by using the remote control, especially for the projector suspended from ceiling.
- 💜 [1080P Native Resolution (1920*1080), Support Play 4k Video] The projector with native 1920*1080 resolution, remarkable 7500L Brightness and high dynamic contrast ratio of 10000:1, provides sharp and detailed images from HD content without downscaling or compression, which is four times higher than 720p, ensuring the best video experience.
- Unexpected affordable price
- Ease of setup
- Excellent lumen brightness
- Possible as an outdoor projector
- Not durable materials
- Focus issue in the edges
VAVA 4K UST Laser Projector – Best Ultra-Short Throw Projector
VAVA 4K UST Laser Projector
If the price is not your first concern, but the convenience and ease of installation, the ideal of throw-laser projectors like the VAVA 4K UST Laser Projector will interest you.
In specific, you will not need to install the device on your ceiling or prepare an extra distance between the projector and the projector screen. Put the VAVA 4K UST on the place where your TV used to live or wherever it is flat.
In terms of resolution, the projector is equipped with an XPR DLP chip of Texas Instruments, of which the native resolution is 1080p. Moreover, the VAVA 4K – as the name suggests, performs better than what you can expect from 1080p projectors.
It uses Pixel Shift technology to instantly emit the pixel 4 times when it comes to 4K images. Every movie moment will be conveyed vividly. Indeed, this device is the best 4K home theater projector!
The sound is also impressive. There is an internal 60W stereo soundbar, plus the DTS-HD and Dolby audio. Even when you go to the kitchen for some snacks, you can still hear the movie sound, which is great!
The downside, however, is the limited 2500 lumens of brightness. It is not the brightest projector out there, so we will not recommend it for ambient environments.
- Ultra Short Throw: Cast a 100 inch image from only 7.2 inches away from the wall! With a space-saving design, quick and easy setup, and the ability to adjust your projection from between 80 to 150 inches on the fly, you can enjoy a cinematic experience from the comfort of your own home!
- 4K Resolution with HDR 10: Feast your eyes on awe-inspiring visuals with deeper colors, higher contrast, fuller saturation, and sharper imagery. The VAVA's 3000: 1 native contrast far exceeds the standard 2000: 1 native contrast found in movie theaters.
- Ease of installation
- Portable and durable build
- High 4K resolution
- Impressive audio gear
- Among the most expensive models
- Limited lumens of brightness
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How to Select A Projector for Home Theater?
Video projectors come in different quality and prices, based on their purposes. When it comes to enjoying a cinematic experience, you must consider devices with extra bright image quality, ease of installation, and advanced features like 3D or 4K, etc.
Contrast Colors And Flexible Brightness
The very first thing to consider is the image quality provided by the chosen projector. Besides the quality of source movie materials, there are three factors involved: the native resolution, contrast ratio, and brightness.
- Native resolution
Naturally, the higher resolution means a more detailed image.
Acceptable pixels of home theater projects would be 1280 x 720 for Blu-ray and DVD videos. 1280 x 768 versions are better at transferring the computer into a larger screen. Meanwhile, 1920 x 1080 cinema projectors are more expensive, yet they are the best to get the full out of HDTV, gaming, and Blue-ray devices.
- High contrast ratio
The contrast ratio, simply put, is the light versus darkness. Thus, a low one can result in faint and muddy images, whereas too much contrast causes all color nuances to go away.
There is no correct ratio for all situations because it is affected by the projectors’ location and available brightness. Thus, it is better to buy devices with multiple ratios and adjust them accordingly to have a clear display and details of the images.
- Brightness adjustment
You will also want to turn on projectors in a similar situation to get the most cinema experience.
Unfortunately, it is hard to block all ambient lighting sources out at home. The last resort is relying on the adjustment on the projectors.
The best range should be between 2000 to 3000 lumens.
Throw Distance And Installation
The place you want to put the device also matters since you must maintain a suitable throw ratio between the screen and projector.
- 1.5 – 2.5 meters for small homes.
- 2.5 – 4 meters for larger spaces.
Once you determine the distance, you might continue deciding where to install the projector so that any obstructions do not limit the projection path. Your family members can also move around freely.
Forever mounting it to the ceiling or wall is a good option if you have a bulky and multimedia projector to maintain stability during the display.
Otherwise, there are pocket or moveable versions for those who like to see films in different places and with many people once in a while.
Thanks to many modern features, cinema projectors have become more and more user-friendly and comfortable to use.
- HDR: High Dynamic Range helps improve the image quality with high-gamut colors.
- 3D: A projector supporting a 3D display would be great if you have computer software and graphic cards available.
- 4K: With a less common, 4K is the step-up of 3D technology using advanced LCD or DLP chips. This technology offers incredible resolution and deep colors.
Frequently Asked Questions
If you still have any confusion, the following questions and answers might help!
How Does A Home Movie Projector Work?
Wonder whether you have used a projector at school or work?
If yes, then the home movie projector works similarly – it projects images onto a flat surface (screen) by shining light sources through the transparent lens or lasers.
The difference is that a home theater project requires the specified resolution and brightness to bring the most vivid and lively motions.
Is A Home Theater Projector Better Than TV?
Both projectors and TVs have pros and cons, thus, it is hard to say which is better.
TVs provide bright and clear pictures without asking for too much space and maintenance.
Meanwhile, projectors are impressive, thinking they give a box-office feel right at home. Those devices, with a big screen, make 3D and 4K resolution more enjoyable. More excitingly, they are a better bang for the buck.
Which Is Better: LCD vs. DLP Projector?
It is better to provide an overview of the two types of projectors, and you can make your own choice.
LCD technology distributes light sources through 3 liquid crystal displays and clearly presents data, images, and videos.
- High lumen output
- Improved picture quality
- Richer colors and sharper images
- Possible screen-door effect
- Bulky construction
DLP technology quickly brought the LCD projectors on wars since its introduction. It makes use of a reflective chip with thousands of tiny mirrors to transfer digital imagery to the screen.
- Portable and cheap projectors
- High contrast in colors
- Less pixelation experienced
- Rainbow effect
- Light leakage
All in all, LCD versions are preferred for sharper and superior image quality. The DLP projectors are more reliable and compact projectors though.
What Projectors to Buy Without Having A Dark Room?
It would be great to prepare a dark room to install the projectors and enjoy the home theater. Nonetheless, if you do not have such a place available or wish to enjoy the film in daily viewing, some projectors are still under your fingertips.
Take the ViewSonic 3800 Lumens SVGA, for example.
That device has extremely high lumens brightness to cut through ambient light easily. You can even install an ALR screen to better cope with bright situations.
Can I Install The Projector Wirelessly?
The wireless age is the future of almost all electronics since it makes things compact and portable.
Get started by selecting a projector with a wireless connection. It often comes with a wireless dongle and web browser or streaming app.
Can I Connect Other Outputs to The Projectors?
It is based on the available connectivity of your model.
For instance, most theater projectors provide HDMI ports to connect with your smartphones’ Chromecast instantly.
Above are the best home theater projector reviews for your reference. We hope that you can already pick up your favorite models based on your demands. The projectors for your favorite movies should have vivid color ranges and various brightness settings. Moreover, it should also be easy to install and set up.
And of all the top 10, we will pick up the DR. J Professional HI-04 for the small and dark situations and the YABER Y31 Native 1920x 1080P for its versatility in multiple situations.