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Frequent Projector Questions

How do I find a replacement lamp (bulb, light bulb)?

The light source in your projector is called a lamp, although many users refer to them as bulbs or light bulbs. To find a replacement lamp (bulb), click on Lamps under Where to Buy in the navigation to the left. This will present you with a list of lamp dealers. Adjacent to the list of dealers is a yellow column of projector brands. Click on the brand of projector that you own and you will be presented with a list of dealers that sell lamps (bulbs) for that brand.

How can I compare projectors?

Just click the check box you see next to any projector model name anywhere on ProjectorCentral and it will pop-up on a compare list in the top rightmost column or go directly to the Compare Projectors utility to choose the projectors you want.

Click on the Compare button to see a side-by-side comparison of the projectors you selected. Delete those you don't want and add new ones directly from the Compare utility or as you browse the site.

Give it a try. Your Internet browser needs to be accepting cookies for this feature to work.

How can I find projectors with special features that I need?

Click on Search by Feature in the left navigation bar under Research to define the projector you want. You can choose from 45 different projector features, 12 different drop down menus and even define the screen size and/or throw distance that you need. Once you've narrowed your search, click the "Sort by" menu to sort your results by what's important to you.

Here's an example of a list of home theater projectors between $1,500 and $2,500, with HDTV resolution (1920 x 1080), a brightness in the range of 2,000 to 1,000 lumens, a zoom lens and the ability to throw an image with a 100 inch diagonal with the projectors sorted in ascending order by price.

Play with the example, click Hide Details to show less information, change the Sort by to whatever is important to you, or add, delete or change to get the configuration you want.

How can I find a projector that will work for a specific throw distance and/or screen size?

It's simple. Go to Feature Search. Enter the throw distance and/or image size that you desire in the Projection Setup section. The results will give you every projector that can deliver your desired image size and/or throw distance and will include both standard and optional lens solutions. The results will show whether the lens is included in the cost.

How do I setup my projector?

Our Calculator Pro provides everything you need to setup a projector properly. For example, if we select the Epson Home Cinema 8350 projector in the Calculator Pro it immediately gives you the recommended seating area, the position of the projector relative to the screen and the seating area, the maximum recommended room light, and an ideal screen size based on the Primary Use you selected.

In our example the projector is intended for Video/Movies so the setup has been optimized by the Calculator Pro to generate a brightness of 16 fL (foot-Lamberts), which is the optimal value that your local movie theater attempts to achieve. If you cannot get your room as dark as a movie theater, then you might consider a smaller screen, a higher gain screen, or a brighter projector for the screen size you've chosen.

For a business application where ambient room light is needed for note taking, 32 fL is usually a good setting. In a well lite room it may be necessary to go as high as 50 fL.

Assuming you can manage ambient light, the Green Zone will be the ideal area for your setup. If the room is well lit, a setting in the Yellow Zone may be necessary. Avoid going into the Red Zone unless you have complete control over ambient light.

The Image Diagonal and Throw Range can be controlled by the vertical slider.

We also offer our Classic Calculator, which is multilingual and allows you to control throw distance and image size. The calculator makes no judgments about the quality of your setup.

How can I get a price on a projector?

There are 5 ways to find projector pricing on ProjectorCentral:

1. If you know the brand or model, click on Projectors in the left navigation column, enter the brand and/or model and you will be presented with a list of resellers with street price, dealer ratings, and additional dealer services.

2. As you browse ProjectorCentral, you can get specs and pricing by clicking on any projector model name.

3. If you're shopping for a projector and you are unfamiliar with the brands and/or the models, click on Search by Feature (this link is also in the left navigation bar). Narrow your search by defining the features and performance you are looking for in a projector and results will be presented to you as you define your needs. To focus on pricing, click "Hide Details" and use Sort by Price to order your list in ascending order by price.

4. Click on E-Z Quote in the left navigation bar and complete the form to receive a personal quote from qualified resellers.

5. Our projector reviews also include a list of resellers with street pricing at the end of the review.

How can I find a local projector merchant?

Under Research in the left navigation bar you'll find a link titled Find Merchants. Click it to locate a reseller near you that sells the products and/or services that you need. You can also choose from any of the Internet merchants that appear adjacent to the map.

To find a dealer near you with the products and/or services you selected, use the map sliders to zoom in on your location. Click on the map pins to for contact information on each reseller.

How can I find a discontinued projector?

As projectors go out of production we or the manufacturer will change its status to discontinued. You can still find these projectors by clicking on Projector Brands and then click the manufacturer you want. This will take you to the manufacturer's page where you will see a list of all their current projectors. Just above that list is a box you can check to Show Discontinued Projectors.

You can also go directly to Search by Feature, select your Brand, and check the box above the results to Show discontinued Projectors. Both Projector Brands and Feature Search are available to you in the left navigation under Research.

What is lens shift and why would I want it?

Projectors with lens shift give you greater flexibility on where you can place a projector relative to the screen. Lens shift comes in two forms: vertical lens shift and horizontal lens shift. Vertical lens shift gives you considerable latitude on where you can place the projector vertically relative to the center of the screen, while horizontal lens shift gives you a similar capability horizontally.

These means that with both vertical and horizontal lens shift you could, for example, place a projector on a nightstand or a table where the projection lens is lined up perpendicular to an edge of the screen and still throw a perfectly rectangular image onto the screen.

About a third of the projectors in the market today offer vertical and/or horizontal lens shift. Consult the projector's User's Manual or contact a dealer to determine the full range of setup that the projector provides. Here's a list of all the projectors with both horizontal and vertical lens shift that have been sorted by Price. Use this as a starting point to help you find the projector that is right for you.

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