Digital Light Processing Projectors
DLP, or Digital Light Processing projectors are best suited to video projection. If you are lucky enough to be thinking about buying a projector for your home theater system, then a DLP projector will probably be your best option.
How much will it cost?
Prices of DLP projectors are still expensive, although they are have fallen considerably in the last few years. This trend is expected to continue, and today's prices are expected to half in the next year or two. A good quality DLP projector will probably set you back around $2000.
Choosing a Projector
There are several key issues to consider when you are choosing your projector.
Firstly, if it is to be used in one room, you will probably find it better to buy a fixed projector, in which case you should try to find good quality projector lamps to go with it. Although it will be more expensive, it will be of better quality and cause you less hassle because it will probably last longer, therefore won't need changing so often.
Secondly, you should consider the brightness of the room that you will use the projector in. If it is bright you will need a more powerful projector. The brightness of a projector is measured in ANSI lumens, and the higher the rating, the brighter the projector will be. Typically, a good quality projector will be around 2000-3000 lumens although brighter models do exist.
Finally, the other thing to consider is the resolution of the projector. Currently, there are four choices beginning with SVGA (800x600), then XGA (1024x768), SXGA (1280x1024) and finally VXGA (1600x1200). For watching movies, it is not advisable to buy an SVGA projector. These are better suited to PowerPoint presentations and for use with LCD projectors. If you are willing to spend around $2000 on a DLP projector, then the quality of the performance is obviously important to you. However, buying a projector means that you are really splashing out, then you might consider the difference in performance between the top two groups to not be justified by the price. Therefore, you might be better to opt for an SXGA projector.
If you will be using a computer with your DLP projector, it is highly advisable to pick a projector that operates in the same resolution as your computer. This way you are guaranteed the best possible picture for the equipment you have available to you. Ideally your DLP projector should be able to be used by at least one computer at a time and preferably a video source such as a DVD player too, giving you the widest possible range of uses for your projector.
Budget models do not necessarily mean poor performance. It is possible to buy good quality projectors but without some of the extra features, such as zooming or wide-angle lens functions. But then, if you are just going to be watching a movie, you probably wouldn't need a wide-angle lens function.