I still remember some of my old high school days. I’ll often talk with old friends about some of the memories from class. One memory seared into my brain is when the teachers did a presentation using AV projection technology. To present notes to the class, the teacher would lug out a cumbersome overhead projector. They would spend several minutes positioning the lamp until the image fit optimally on the projection screen. The clear acetate paper that went on top of the projector was usually overused with stains from vis-à-vis marker residue. Things have drastically changed with the introduction of laser projectors.
There have been significant advancements in lamp projection technology since my high school days. Projectors now fit multiple bulbs and the bulbs themselves now shine in thousands of lumens. In addition, the lamp bulbs last longer due to new gas formulas and enhanced cooling systems. The issue with many lamp-style projectors is room lighting, illumination and maintenance. Outside lighting coming in through the windows of a room will disrupt the quality of a projected image or video. Laser projectors are more versatile in this regard.
Laser Projectors vs. Lamp Projectors: Color and Brightness
In comparing laser and lamp projection in terms of color and brightness, the edge goes to laser. The consistency of color is superior, especially in areas where outside sources of light interfere with picture quality. For large venues, such as auditoriums and amphitheaters, laser projectors display deeper color and consistent brightness over longer distances. Another factor to consider is the lifecycle of LED bulbs for lamp projectors. The older the LED bulbs become, the less image quality they produce in terms of color and brightness.
Other Advantages of Laser Projectors
The infographic below from NEC Displays illustrates the value of laser projectors in terms of quality and long-term cost savings.
In addition to NEC, Sony also has their line of 3LCD laser projectors offering businesses and educational institutions a great value. Other projector manufacturers such as Epson, Sanyo, Hitachi, BenQ, and LG have stepped up their game to offer 4K projectors. Lastly, projection screen manufacturer Da-Lite has released its Parallax screen technology to block outside light interference.
In the comparison of laser projectors vs lamp projectors, the edge goes to laser. Consistent color and brightness regardless of ambient light or distance, lamp replacements, hours of illumination and total cost of ownership are all in favor of laser projection. With all the advantages the technology presents, should everyone upgrade their projection systems to laser? To answer that question, it depends on the need of the customer. Lamp projection still fills a niche for customers looking at low-cost and short-term display options. In addition, situations do arise where lamp projectors are more than enough to achieve desired outcomes. In summary, a niche market for lamp projectors still exists, however laser projectors are becoming the widely accepted standard for presentation display needs.
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