Laser Projectors

A Sony projector with laser light engine
The Sony VPL-FHZ65 is a commercial grade laser projector suitable for many advanced applications.

The Coming of Laser Projectors

Hint: Laser projectors have arrived en masse, and they will dominate over lamp projectors by 2020. Now that we are transitioning into 2019, it should be pointed out that the choices in laser projectors has changed greatly since 2016 – just three years. Back then the laser projectors tended to be either fairly high end business, education, or commercial projectors with few below $10,000.. Today we have consumer laser projectors selling from about $2500 street price and up, and business and education projectors with lasers start as low as $1999 (for a Sony WXGA resolution laser projector! (about 1/3 of the lowest priced laser projectors just 3 years ago). There are now plenty of laser projectors for business, education and commercial use that are priced from $2K to $6K Once you start around that $6K price you start getting either advanced features such as edge blending and projection mapping, or higher resolutions such as 4K. 4K lasers however are still about $20,000 and up, but feature laden and extremely bright.

The transition to laser projectors is moving very quickly everywhere but “entry level – that is small portable/fixed install projectors such as those typical of K-12 classrooms and small conference rooms.

We have reviewed a number of these projectors, including, fairly recently, Epson’s new affordable Powerlite L610W, a WXGA model with a MSRP price $2599 and 6000 lumens! Our image player and the list of laser projectors below point to those reviews, and the list also points to other laser projectors which we have not reviewed.

There is one other group of projectors using laser light engines worth mentioning. Those are the extremely small pico projectors. Although most of those have LED light engines but there are just a few of those that do use lasers. We recently reviewed Sony’s CL1, an especially tiny example of a laser projector.

Laser powered projectors tend to be more expensive than lamp based projectors, but offer some major advantages for many applications. This page will explore some of those practical differences and why laser based projectors may be the right choice for many installations. The most recent news (as of 3/2016) is that Epson just announced 7 new commercial grade laser projectors, covering a range of brightness from 6000 to 25,000 lumens! Now that’s impressive.

This is going to be one of the fastest growing segments of the projector market thanks to the multiple benefits of using lasers – many described below.

Laser Projectors Reviews

Epson Home Cinema LS11000 Laser Projector Review
September 3, 2022

The Epson Home Cinema LS11000, which retails for $3999, is a 4K HDR compatible laser home theater projector.

BENQ LU9750 PRO WUXGA 8,500 LUMEN LARGE VENUE LASER DLP PROJECTOR REVIEW
August 30, 2022

  BenQ LU9750 Performance, Installation Flexibility, and Reliability   The BenQ LU9750 is an ultra-bright 8,500 ANSI lumens professional projector compatible with interchangeable lenses (not included) that sells for $11,999 MSRP. The LU9750 has a manuf ...

OPTOMA ZU920TST PRO WUXGA 8,200 LUMEN LASER PROJECTOR REVIEW
August 16, 2022

The ZU-920TST is Optoma’s replacement for the ZU-720TST The Optoma ZU920TST is an ultra-bright 8,200 ANSI lumen professional projector that sells for $12,999 MSRP. The ZU920TST has a manufacturer-rated DYNAMIC CONTRAST Ratio of 3,000,000:1 and a WUXGA ...

EPSON PRO EB-PU1008W 3LCD LARGE VENUE LASER PROJECTOR REVIEW
July 18, 2022

The Pro EB=PU100W is one of seven new P series projectors in Epson's 2022 line The Epson EB-PU1008W is a WUXGA 8,500-lumen 4K-enhanced laser projector that accepts the full range of 4K content. This projector is designed for large venues, but its compa ...

Hisense L5G 4K Smart Laser TV Review
June 30, 2022

A great addition to the Hisense line of ultra-short-throw projectors The Hisense L5G is an X-Fusion laser-equipped, smart, ultra-short-throw projector with a brightness rated at 2,700 ANSI lumens that comes with a screen at $4,499 MSRP (120-inch) and $ ...

ViewSonic X2000B-4K Ultra Short Throw 4K Laser Projector Review
June 29, 2022

  The ViewSonic X2000B-4K has a nice shape and modern design.   The ViewSonic X2000B-4K is a 4K Ultra-Short Throw (UST) smart Laser Projector that retails for $3,098.99. The projector can deliver 2000 ANSI lumens of brightness and it includes a high-qu ...

LG CineBeam HU915QB 4K Laser Projector Review
June 26, 2022

  The LG HU915QB is an ultra-short-throw laser 4K smart DLP projector with retails for $6499. It utilizes a multi-channel laser light source that can reproduce nearly 100% of the DCI-P3 color space and deliver up to 3000 ANSI lumens of brightness. Whil ...

Wemax Go Advanced Full HD DLP Business Laser Projector Review
June 24, 2022

8.6" x 4.6" x 0.97" (W x D x H) and weighs just 1.7 pounds The Wemax Go Advanced is a first-of-its-kind, ultra-portable 1080p DLP business laser projector, capable of 600 ANSI lumens of brightness, 1.5 hours of battery life, less than one-inch thick, a ...

Panasonic PT-FRQ50 4K DLP Business/Education Laser Projector Review
June 14, 2022

PT-FRQ50 Available in black and white chassis The Panasonic PT-FRQ50 is a SOLID SHINE, professional, DLP laser projector that can display 4K (3,840 x 2,160 pixels) resolution with a rated brightness of 5,200 lumens. The PT-FRQ50 is an installation-clas ...

Sony VPL-XW7000ES 4K SXRD Home Theater Projector Review
April 25, 2022

The Sony VPL-XW7000ES is a 3200 lumen, native 4K home theater projector and part of Sony's SXRD projector lineup refresh.

Hisense PX1-PRO TriChroma Laser Cinema Review
March 10, 2022

  Fifth Generation Hisense Ultra-Short-Throw Projector   The Hisense PX1-PRO is a Tricolor laser-equipped smart ultra-short-throw projector with a brightness rated at 2,200 ANSI lumens which sells for $3,999 MSRP.  Hisense introduced the world's first ...

LG CineBeam HU715Q 4K Laser UST Projector Review
February 21, 2022

  The LG HU715Q 4K UHD Laser UST CineBeam Projector is LG’s newest Ultra-Short-Throw.   The LG HU715Q is a 4K UHD Laser Ultra-Short-Throw (UST) CineBeam Projector that retails for $2,999. Its laser light source is rated to deliver 2,500 ANSI lumens for ...

LG CineBeam HU710PW Hybrid LED Laser 4K Projector Review
February 13, 2022

  2022 LG HU710PW   The LG HU710PW is one of two newly announced CineBeam projectors. We were excited to get our hands on the HU710PW ($2,499.99 SRP) because it is the first LG projector to utilize a hybrid light source system. This new LG system uses ...

Sony VPL-GTZ380 4K SXRD Laser Projector Review
November 29, 2021

  If you are looking for the ultimate home theater experience, you should definitely take a close look at Sony's flagship projector, the VPL-GTZ380, which is a 10,000 lumen, native 4K SXRD projector that retails for $80,000 (minus lens). In 2017 when A ...

Hisense L9G TriChroma Laser TV 4K Review
November 2, 2021

  Hisense TriChroma Laser TV 4K   The Hisense L9G is a Tricolor laser-equipped smart ultra-short-throw projector with a brightness rated at 3,000 ANSI lumens. These types of projectors are commonly referred to as "Laser TVs". They are called Laser TV b ...

XGIMI Aura 4K Ultra Short Throw Smart Laser Projector Review
October 28, 2021

The Aura is XGIMI’s First Ultra Short Throw Smart Laser Projector. We are taking a look at XGIMI’s new Aura 4K Ultra Short Throw (UST) Smart Laser Projector which retails for just $2499. The Aura is XGMI’s first UST projector. XGIMI made sure their fir ...

Panasonic PT-MZ880 3LCD SOLID SHINE Laser Projector Review
October 5, 2021

The Panasonic PT-MZ880 is feature packed   The Panasonic PT-MZ880 3LCD SOLID SHINE Laser Projector is an 8,000-lumens projector with a laser light engine that can natively display WUXGA (1920 x 1200) resolution. This is an installation class projector ...

BenQ GS50 Ruggedized Portable 1080P Projector Review
September 14, 2021

BenQ has announced another exciting portable projector, the GS50 which is the second generation of BenQ’s GS lineup. The GS50 is a 1080p Full High Definition (FHD) portable LED projector that is rated at 500 ANSI lumens and the first portable projector to have a 2.1 channel Bluetooth speaker with “Extra Bass.”

Why Many Video Enthusiasts Still Choose Projectors
August 31, 2021

In this article, we discuss why projectors continue to be a viable option for those looking for high-quality video in massive sizes. 

BenQ V7050i 4K Laser TV Projector Review
August 26, 2021

  BenQ V7050i   The BenQ V7050i is a 2500 lumen Laser TV that retails for $3499. Ultra-short throw, smart 4K laser projectors commonly referred to as "Laser TVs" have been growing in popularity. If like me, you have been waiting for BenQ to enter the L ...

ViewSonic X100-4K 4K LED Smart Home Theater Projector Review
August 9, 2021

ViewSonic's flagship 4K LED home theater projector. I’m all about that portable all-in-one projector life, but today, I’m stepping away from my usual portable projectors for this review and taking a look at the ViewSonic X100-4K. The X100-4K is ViewSon ...

LG PROBEAM BU60PST LASER BUSINESS PROJECTOR REVIEW
July 19, 2021

LG BU60PST ProBeam laser business projector is a 6000 Lumen 4K Smart business projector which retails for $4499,

OPTOMA CINEMAX P2 LASER TV REVIEW
July 15, 2021

Optoma CinemaX P2 ultra-short-throw smart 4K laser home theater projector also known as a laser TV review.

SONY VPL-VW1025ES 4K SXRD LASER PROJECTOR REVIEW
July 2, 2021

The VW1025ES is Sony’s least expensive 4K Home Theater projector The Sony VPL-VW1025ES which retails for $40,000 is a 4K SXRD laser home theater projector. It is the successor of the highly-rated VW995ES ($35,000 SRP) we reviewed a few years ago. Art l ...

PANASONIC PT-FRZ60 LASER DLP INSTALLATION PROJECTOR REVIEW
May 15, 2021

Review of the Panasonic PT-FRZ60 an installation class DLP laser projector with WUXGA resolution and rated brightness of 6,000 lumens.

Maximize Your Theater’s Performance with Kaleidescape
April 1, 2021

This month’s sponsored article is brought to you by Kaleidescape, the industry leader in premium multi-room, home entertainment systems that store and play back full fidelity video and audio content.   One of the things you’ll notice as ...

VIEWSONIC M2 SMART LED PROJECTOR REVIEW
March 17, 2021

The ViewSonic M2 Smart 1080P LED projector with Harman Kardon Bluetooth speakers (referred to as “the M2” in the remainder of this review) is a 500 ANSI Lumen (1200 LED lumen), full HD (1,920 x1,080) DLP LED-powered business and home media projector de ...

Overcoming Seven Common Projector Installation Challenges
March 1, 2021

This month’s featured article is brought to you by Sharp NEC, leaders in the commercial projector marketplace. We've all been there. You’re in an important meeting and no one can figure out how to turn on the projector in the board room. Even worse, on ...

LG AU810PB CINEBEAM 4K LASER PROJECTOR REVIEW
February 15, 2021

As we have mentioned in a few reviews this year, we have been very impressed by some television manufacturers who have released new projectors such as LG and Samsung. These television manufacturers are doing incredibly well incorporating the technologi ...

NEC P506QL 4K LASER BUSINESS PROJECTOR REVIEW
February 8, 2021

The NEC P506QL is a laser light engine equipped installation class DLP projector capable of displaying 4K resolution with a current street price of $4,299. Its laser/phosphor wheel light engine can deliver 5,000 ANSI lumens and has a rated life of 20,0 ...

Indiana University’s Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art Designs Ultra-Immersive Contemporary Art Space with State-of-the-Art Native 4K Laser Projection
February 2, 2021

This month’s sponsored article comes to us from Epson, which partnered with Indiana University to install three Epson Pro L12002QNL native 4K 3LCD Laser Projectors and Epson ELPLX02W (V12H004Y02) ultra-short-throw lenses in the on-campus museum’s conte ...

EPSON EF12 SMART LASER PROJECTOR REVIEW
January 31, 2021

The Epson EF12, part of their EpiqVision series of Smart projectors, offers all the benefits of a Smart TV with the benefits of a projector.

LG GRU510N 4K Laser Projector Review
January 4, 2021

The LG GRU510N is an HDR-compatible DLP home theater laser projector that retails for $3999 and is part of their ProBeam series.

Elite MosicGO 360 Portable Cinema System Review
December 15, 2020

The Elite Projector offers multiple MosicGO systems, which are a portable home theater system designed for outdoor and indoor entertainment.

Epson EpiqVision LS500 Laser TV Review
December 11, 2020

The Epson LS500 is a laser powered, 4000 lumen, 3LCD projector with an ultra short throw design, and it is bundled with either a 100” or 120” screen.

Sony HDR Projection Reimagined
December 1, 2020

In this article, sponsored by Sony, we explore the challenges of projecting HDR and how higher-end projectors utilize features and technologies to improve the picture quality of HDR content dramatically.

HISENSE 100L5F LASER TV REVIEW
November 14, 2020

The Hisense 1000L5F Laser TV is a 4K DLP Laser Ultra-Short Throw Smart projector. With a retail price of $3999, the new Hisense 100L5F is the most affordable Laser TV they have ever offered.

LG BU50NST 4K LASER BUSINESS PROJECTOR REVIEW
November 11, 2020

The LG ProBeam BU50NST is a compact projector designed for various ProAV applications, including enterprise, education, hospitals, and museums. It provides UHD (3840 x 2160) resolution and is rated to deliver 5,000 ANSI lumens of light output.

ViewSonic LS700HD Laser DLP Home Projector Review
October 23, 2020

The ViewSonic LS700HD is a lamp-free 1080p laser home projector featuring 3,500 ANSI lumen high brightness and cinematic color for you to enjoy a big screen experience in a bright living room or in your dedicated home theater.

Maxell MP-JU4001 3LCD Laser WUXGA Business Projector Review
October 22, 2020

Maxell's business 3LCD Laser projector with 4,000 ANSI Lumen designed for classroom and conference room environments.

Sony's Powerful Video Processing Delivers A Better HDR Picture
October 5, 2020

We discuss video processing and its impact on a projector’s SDR and HDR picture quality. Video processing separates one video display from another because it impacts so many factors like 4K upscaling, visual contrast, color reproduction, and motion performance.

Hisense 100L10E Laser TV Review
August 20, 2020

The Hisense 100L10E Laser TV is a 4K DLP ultra-short throw smart laser projector which includes a 100" ALR Screen.

Sony Introduces Flagship 4K SXRD Laser Projector for Professional Applications
July 28, 2020

The VPL-GTZ380 is Sony's Flagship 10,000 Lumen 4K SXRD Laser Projector designed for professional applications.

Epson BrightLink 735Fi, PowerLite 750F, and PowerLite L200SW Education Projectors: Our First-Look Review of Key Features and Capabilities
July 27, 2020

Epson recently announced a slew of new projectors aimed squarely at the education market, including two interactive BrightLink models and seven non-interactive models.

VividStorm 120” Projector Screen Review: An Ambient Light Rejecting, Motorized Floor Screen For Laser TVs and UST Projectors
July 6, 2020

A quick review of VividStorm’s 120” motorized screen designed for ultra-short-throw projectors and laser TVs.

BENQ LU710 Business/Education Projector Review
July 5, 2020

New 4,000 lumens laser WUXGA DLP business projector from BenQ.

Be Amazed: Using Panasonic Commercial Laser Projector For Higher Education and Houses Of Worship Applications. And See Imagery of Panasonic Projectors Doing Incredible Things
June 22, 2020

Panasonic's latest laser projector for education application, houses of worship, digital signage and more!

Casio XJ-F211WN Laser/LED Hybrid Business and Education Projector Review
June 16, 2020

Great for both business and education environments, the Casio XJ-F211WN is their latest in DLP WXGA projectors .

Optoma CinemaX P1 Laser TV Review: A Smart, 4K UHD Projector For The Really Big Screen Experience
June 5, 2020

Optoma's hot new ultra short throw, 4K UHD laser TV.

Panasonic PT-MZ16KL Laser Projector Review
May 15, 2020

The Panasonic PT-MZ16KL is an installation class 3LCD laser projector with WUXGA (1,920 x 1,200) resolution and rated brightness of 16,000 lumens.

Epson’s Laser Projectors Transform the World We Know in Entertainment Venues and Other Large-Scale Environments
May 1, 2020

This feature article primarily focuses on some exciting uses of the larger, more powerful and capable laser projectors.

BenQ EH600 Smart Business Projector Review
April 27, 2020

BenQ describes the EH600 as the World’s first Android based smart projector designed specifically for business applications.

CHRISTIE LWU530-APS Laser Projector Review
March 16, 2020

The Christie LWU530-APS is a 5,000 ANSI lumen business class laser projector with WUXGA resolution that can accept a full range of content up to 4K.

The Newest, Smartest Laser Projectors From Sony Are Impressive: "Affordable Lasers" for Business, Classroom! Commercial Projectors for Auditoriums, Museums and Entertainment!
March 1, 2020

Greetings, projector professionals: AV managers, IT, tech coordinators, educators, presenters, and buyers. Sony, as one of the most recognized brands in the world obviously needs no formal introduction.  Their reputation for quality goes back to the la ...

HT9060 Projector Review: BenQ’s Flagship 4K UHD Home Theater Projector
February 15, 2020

The HT9060, is a serious home theater projector from BenQ that uses the higher resolution 4K UHD chip set – with native resolution of 2716 x 1528 x 2.

LG HU70LA CINEBEAM THINQ 4K PROJECTOR REVIEW
January 26, 2020

The LG HU70LA is an HDR compatible DLP home theater LED projector which retails for $1,799.

Look Out Competition: It’s Fun Time! Epson Is Shipping Their First, Smart, Under $1000 Home Entertainment Laser Projector – HD Res, and 2000 lumens!
January 6, 2020

Epson's new EF-100 smart home theater projector that can be used in just about any room in your house.

First Look Review Kaleidescape Strato S – Theater Quality Movie Download System and Home Server!
January 5, 2020

The Kaleidescape Strato S is their "entry level" movie player. Plug this server into your display and you are ready to start downloading and watching high quality content.

JVC LX-NZ3 4K Laser DLP Projector Review
December 31, 2019

The JVC LX-NZ3 is an HDR compatible DLP home theater projector that can deliver true 4K UHD resolution (3840 x 2160).

Christie LHD878-DS Laser Projector Review
December 15, 2019

The Christie LHD878-DS is a 7,800 ANSI lumen business class laser projector with Full HD resolution that can accept a full range of 4K content.

Vivitek DH3660Z Business/Education Laser Projector Review
December 13, 2019

The Vivitek DH3660Z is a 1080p (1920 x 1080) resolution, DLP projector intended for business and education environments.

Optoma ZU506T-W Professional Installation Laser Projector Review
December 10, 2019

The Optoma ZU506T-W is a laser-powered Installation projector that will cover most of your projection needs.

VAVA Laser TV Review: 2500 Lumens of 4K UHD Ultra Short Throw Projector For The Whole Family
December 2, 2019

The VAVA Laser TV LT002 is a 2500 ANSI lumens (manufacturer claimed) at well below the price point of many other ultra-short through projectors.

2019 Holiday Guide To Five Great Home Theater Projectors Over $2000
November 22, 2019

Welcome to our Holiday Guide To Five Great Home Theater Projectors Over $2000. Here’s your chance to learn about some awesome projectors and screens that will change the way you enjoy movies, HDTV, streaming and more! You’ll find the scoop on a number ...

Optoma UHL55 4K UHD Home Entertainment LED Projector Review
October 7, 2019

The Optoma 4K UHD UHL55 is an all in one home entertainment solution with 1500 lumens and a contrast ration of 250,000:1.

Maxell MP-TW4011 Ultra Short Throw Interactive Laser Projector Review
September 27, 2019

The Maxell MP-TW4011 is an ultra short throw, 3LCD projector with WXGA (1280 x 800) resolution with a laser light engine.

Panasonic PT-VMZ50 Laser Projector Review
September 24, 2019

The Panasonic PT-VMZ50 is a business class 3LCD laser projector with WUXGA (1920 x 1200), resolution and rated brightness of 5,000 lumens.

LG HU85LA CineBeam ThinQ 4K Projector Review – UST Design Brings Quality Home Theater To Your Living Room
August 13, 2019

The LG HU85LA is a Laser TV, also known as Ultra-Short Throw projectors, with a list price of $4999.

BenQ HT5550 Review – A Very Impressive 4K UHD Home Theater Projector - Under $2500!
July 22, 2019

The BenQ HT5550 is a 4K UHD projector with a list price of $2499, making it an affordable 1080p projector option.

Casio XJ-S400UN Business/Education Projector Review
July 11, 2019

The Casio XJ-S400UN is part of Casio’s new Superior series, which features the next generation of their mercury-free, hybrid laser and LED light engine.

LG CineBeam HU85LA First Look Review – 4K UHD and Ultra Short Throw
June 13, 2019

The LG CineBeam HU85LA is a smart projectors and LG fans have been eagerly waiting for the arrival of this 4K UHD ultra short throw projector.

NEC NP-P525UL Review: An Affordable 3LCD Laser Projector
June 3, 2019

The NEC P525UL is a laser light engine installation class 3LCD projector having WUXGA, 1920 x 1200, resolution and a bright 5,000 lumens rated light output.

The Optoma P1 4K UHD Laser Projector - Is this The Game Changer…
May 31, 2019

The Optoma P1 4K UHD Laser Projector has been generating alot of buzz since it was first announced. Will it be worth the hype?

NEC Commercial Laser Projectors - Advanced Wall Melting Performance
March 8, 2019

NEC's powerful 4K capable commercial laser projectors - the PX1004UL and the PH3501QL.

Optoma EH330UST Business/Education Projector Review
February 26, 2019

The Optoma EH330UST is a 3,600 lumen ultra-short throw projector with DLP technology for business and education applications.

Sony VPL-FHZ61 Commercial Laser Projector Review
September 28, 2018

The Sony VPL-FHZ61 is a WUXGA (1920x1200) 3LCD laser projector with 5,100 lumens.

Casio XJ-A257 Portable LED/Laser Projector Review
September 17, 2018

The Casio XJ-A257 is a portable laser projector designed for business and education applications.

Panasonic PT-MZ670U Business and Education Projector Review
July 23, 2018

The Panasonic PT-MZ670U is a 6,500 lumen projector with a laser light engine and WUXGA (1920 x 1200) resolution.

The LG CineBeam HU80K - A 4K Laser Projector That Gets It
June 29, 2018

The new LG HU80K 4K Laser Projector is turning heads.

Acer VL7860 4K UHD Laser Projector Review
June 22, 2018

The VL7860 projector is the first 4K UHD with respectable black levels that we've seen, and that makes it a strong, 4K capable home theater projector.

Dell S718QL - A 4K UHD, Ultra Short Throw, Laser Projector Review
March 13, 2018

Review of the Dell S718QL 4K UHD Ultra-Short Throw Laser business and education projector.

Epson BrightLink 710Ui Interactive Laser Projector Review
February 1, 2018

The Epson BrightLink 710Ui is a WUXGA (1920 x 1200) laser projector with interactive capabilities.

Optoma UHZ65 4K Laser Projector Review
December 20, 2017

Optoma’s new UHZ65 home theater projector is positioned at the top of Optoma's lineup of UHx6x models of UHD projectors sporting the first Texas Instruments consumer 4K UHD chip, and targeting home users.

Epson Home Cinema LS100 Laser Projector Review
November 9, 2017

The Epson Home Cinema LS100 Laser Projector is 1080p ultra-short throw projector with 4,000 lumens.

Casio XJ-L8300HN 4K UHD Business/Education Projector Review
October 19, 2017

The Casio XJ-L8300HN is a 4K UHD, commercial-grade large venue projector claiming 5,000 lumens that features a hybrid laser/phosphor light engine.

NEC NP-PA653UL Business/Education Projector Review
September 27, 2017

The NEC NP-PA653UL is a 6,500 lumen, large venue laser projector using 3LCD technology for advanced business and education applications.

Sony VPL-VW885ES 4K Home Theater Laser Projector Review
September 6, 2017

Full review of the Sony VPL-VW885ES, a true 4K projector that supports High Dynamic Range.

Ricoh PJ WXL4540 Ultra Short Throw Projector Review
July 9, 2017

Ricoh is an established manufacturer of business and classroom class projectors and they offer models using DLP and LCD technology. We wish to thank Epson America for sponsoring this year’s Best Classroom Projectors Report. ...

Sony VPL-VZ1000ES Laser, True 4K, Home Theater Projector Review
June 27, 2017

The Sony VPL-VZ1000ES is a 4K ultra short throw home theater projector which claims 2500 lumen and a $24,995 list price.

Optoma ZW300UST Projector Review
June 20, 2017

The Optoma ZW300UST is a business/education installation projector claiming 3,200 lumens, with WXGA resolution, DLP technology, and a laser light engine.

BenQ CH100 Portable Business Projector Review
May 19, 2017

The BenQ CH100 is a small, HD resolution, DLP portable business projector with an LED light engine, claiming 1,000 lumens.

Epson Pro Cinema LS10500 Laser Home Theater Projector - Review
May 11, 2017

Review of the Epson LS10500 laser home theater projector.

Casio XJ-UT351WN Ultra Short Throw Projector Review
April 26, 2017

The Casio XJ-UT351WN ultra short throw projector that uses a solid state light engine - LED and laser combination instead of a lamp.

Sony LaserLite VPL-PHZ10 Laser Projector Review
April 13, 2017

The Sony VPL-PHZ10 is an affordable laser projector for business and education.

Sony VPL-VW5000ES Home Theater/Commercial Projector Review
January 29, 2017

Sony's VPL-VW5000ES is one of the best 4K Home Theater projectors to ever go to market.

Casio XJ-F210WN Projector Review
November 14, 2016

The Casio XJ-F210WN is a DLP projector with great picture in the $1000 range.

Epson Powerlite Pro L1500, L1505 Laser Projector Review
July 8, 2016

The Epson Pro L1505 is a 12,000 lumen, large venue, pixel shifting,  laser projector with WUXGA resolution, that can accept a full range of 4K content.

Casio Ecolite XJ-V110W - A Value LED/Laser Projector - Review
June 11, 2016

Casio's Ecolite XJ-V110W is WXGA and offers 3500 lumens for $799, with a 20,000 LED/Laser light engine.

NEC P502WL Laser Projector Review
April 28, 2016

The NEC P502WL is a laser light engine installation class DLP projector having WXGA, 1280 x 800, resolution and a bright 5000 lumens rated light output.

Sony MP-CL1 Pico Laser Projector Review
November 19, 2015

The Sony MPCL1 HD resolution pico projector is laser powered! Now that got my attention. Over the past couple of years, I’ve generally skipped bringing in pico projectors for review, choosing, instead to focus on the larger, brighter, heavier ...

Sony VPL-FHZ65 Laser Projector Review
October 22, 2015

Sony's VPL-FHZ65 Laser Projector offers high performance and better value than earlier commercial laser projectors.

Casio EcoLite XJ-V1 Projector Review
April 21, 2015

The Casio XJ-V1 is a new model (release date May 2015) for which the manufacturer uses the name EcoLite(tm).

Epson Pro-Cinema LS9600e Projector Review
March 13, 2015

The Epson Pro Cinema LS9600e is the little brother of the LS10000 that was have previously reviewed by Art

Epson Pro Cinema LS10000 Projector Review: Update
February 2, 2015

Epson LS10000 home theater projector -  update with full production version - it's even better! This update complements the original 9/2014 review based on an early engineering sample of the Pro Cinema LS10000.  The bulk of the info in t ...

Panasonic PT-RZ670BU Projector Review - Overview
December 1, 2014

Our review of the Panasonic PT-RZ670BU projector confirms it is a large, heavy and bright commercial business projector that uses a laser light engine. This isn't your typical business projector, rather it is a highly flexible projector suitable for us ...

Sony VPL-FHZ55 Laser 3LCD Projector Review
February 4, 2014

This Sony laser projector was one of the most talked about this year at the trade shows. Sony produces excellent color, from a long life laser engine.

Viewsonic Pro9000 Home Theater Projector Review
October 15, 2012

Viewsonic's Pro9000 projector is one of the rare home theater projectors to sport a hybrid, solid state light engine - in this case, an LED/laser light engine claiming a life of 20,000 hours.  This Pro9000 is a DLP projector, with a better than most wa ...

About 4K Projectors

Laser projectors aren’t new, they’ve been around for back to about 2010. Not only are there those projectors using a total laser light engine, but others, such as the Casio line of projectors uses a hybrid design with both laser and LEDs providing the light sources. Casio’s design has some limitations compared to the traditional laser/phosphor combination, but you can’t argue the value – with their solid state LED/Lasers starting around $600 for a very basic projector. Still…

Most laser projectors do not directly output laser light through the lens. Rather, they use the lasers to – through one method or another – create a white light source. This is true of the Epsons and Sonys. The Epson is fairly typical. It uses two blue lasers, but fires the lasers at color phosphors, ultimately to create a white light source. This solves the problem of visible artifacts you get projecting a laser beam.

If there’s one word to describe the big advantage of using a laser projector, that would be: “Consistency!” We’re talking about brightness consistency, and color consistency. Both are important, but both can be super important for a number of specific applications. More on this below.

Illustration of Sony’s laser light engine – hitting phosphors with a blue laser to create white, then splitting the white to hit red, green and blue panels.

Laser light engine based projectors typically claim a minimum “light engine” life of 15,000 to 25,000 hours at full power. That, folks, is a really long time. Some companies offer a special warranty on the laser engine, while others may go with their standard 2, 3 or 5 year warranty.

Laser Projectors VS Lamp Projectors

A laser projector has a tremendous advantage over lamp based projectors in a number of applications, but most importantly, lasers really “shine” when you need consistent color, and consistent brightness, over long periods of time.

A traditional projector lamp starts losing brightness almost immediately, and most have lost 50% brightness by 2500 – 5000 hours (whatever the lamp is rated at full power). By comparison, a laser might only lose 10% of brightness over those same periods of hours.

Because the laser engine will last several to many times that of lamps, you’ll be physically changing bulbs/light engines, far less frequently, and that will save a lot of money for labor.

Color is just as important. With a lamp based projector, color balance will normally be slightly different simply by switching between full and eco brightness modes. But, worse, the color also shifts over time.

Lamps color shift enough, that on the home theater side of projectors, for those getting their projectors calibrated, it’s typically recommended to put 100-500 hours on the lamp before doing the first calibration. Depending on the lamp life, etc., for fanatics that demand near perfect color, recalibrating every 500 – 1000 hours is in order. Of course few people who aren’t either rich, or who are techie enough that they own their own calibration gear, would consider re-calibrating frequently due to the high cost – hundreds of dollars per each calibration by a professional.

The color issue is especially important because some applications – such as edge blending, calls for very precise color. Edge blending means multiple projectors, that have to produce exactly the same color so you can’t tell where one projector’s image starts and the other projectors’ end.

In a perfect world for such multi-projector applications, you want consistent color combined with long life, and consistent brightness.

Let’s imagine for one second, that you have to choose between 4 laser projectors and 4 lamp based ones.

With the lasers in our “edge blending” world, you can have consistent brightness (aka “constant brightness”) over 10,000+ hours. And while colors will shift slowly over long periods of time, the laser engines won’t vary like lamp based ones, so they should all still have the same color balance 10,000 hours later. In other words, get your 4 laser projectors set up, and they should run without adjustment for 10,000 hours more.

With four lamp based projectors, you’ll need to first calibrate all four of them so they have the same exact colors to start. Because lamps do vary in performance, you’ll likely need an occasional calibration of the projectors to keep their color seamless from one to the next. That extra effort- support time, is likely to offset any dollar savings that come from going with lamps vs laser, especially after you budget in a bunch of replacement lamps to get you out to those 15000 – 20,000 hours of use.

But that’s only the beginning with a lamp based solution. Let’s imagine that the bulbs in the projectors are rated 4000 hours. OK, everything’ setup, everything is new, picture is perfect. (Let’s even forget about maybe recalibrating at 1000 hours.)

Instead, let’s consider a single lamp failure. Let’s say one of the 4 projector’s lamps fails at 2200 hours. Darnn!

Your support team puts in a replacement lamp, but:

  • That lamp is now brighter than the ones in the other projectors
  • That new lamp also has slightly different color
  • You’ll therefore need to either
    • recalibrate the other 3 projectors so they all look the same, or
    • This one really hurts the budget: You replace all four lamps instead of the one.

You see the problem is, if you don’t replace all four lamps, then the new lamp is going to shift both color, and brightness, at a different pace than the other 3, so it may be, that in just a 1000 hours the projector with the new bulb is definitely not fitting in seamlessly, as it may have shifted more towards (or away from) red, and it may have dimmed faster, than the other three.

Can you say nightmare? Bottom line: Where precision color and brightness are needed – in multi-projector arrays, a solid state light engine such as a laser engine can have a huge advantage, with long term costs proving to be lower than using lamp based projectors. And perhaps more importantly, the amount of support services needed for the lamp based projectors will be drastically higher!

The Price of Lasers - how Much More Than Lamp Based Projectors?

There’s no narrow price difference that can be assigned to the cost of using a laser vs lamp, but I would estimate, that on projectors like Epson’s $6K and $8K models, they could have offered the same projector with a lamp based solution for $1500 – $2500 less. Of course over several years a $1000 or more of the difference will be offset by the cost of replacement lamps. And, if you assign value to support time, even greater savings there.

If you are looking at extremely high end commercial projectors like a $60K Sony, you are talking about a much brighter light engine compared to those home theater projectors, so the difference between the retail of a lamp vs laser projector will be greater. But then the support cost savings are also greater for the laser.

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