Projection mapping is a powerful new art form that has found its way into the world of visual arts in recent years. It has been used in countless ways to create beautiful, moving images on surfaces of any size or shape imaginable.
The ability to use this technique is only limited by the creativity of the artist who creates it and they are constantly finding new ways to push their ideas forward through projection mapping.
This blog post will cover some of our favorite projectors for projection mapping so you can be sure to find one perfect for your needs.
Best Projector for Projection Mapping Top Picks
1. Optoma GT1090HDR
This model is an improvement to its predecessor, the 1080HDR. In addition, the projector is maintenance-free, so it is one headache less compared to other brands.
- Laser Light – uses a DuraCore light source; you no longer need lamp and filter replacements. The light source can provide up to 30,000 hours of work.
- Short Throw Lens – the beauty of it is you can use the projector close to your screen; you can enjoy up to 120 inches of the image even if the projector is merely four feet away. I can say that this is ideal for small spaces, like living rooms or small classrooms.
- 4K HDR Input – there are two HDMI ports at the back, and one of them is 4K; use it to sync 4K inputs or sources like Xbox. However, the output is not 4K, as it only shows 1080p.
- Lights-On Viewing – you do not have to turn off the lights. The projector has 4,200 lumens of brightness, which is enough to produce a powerful output despite the room being bright
- Movies and Gaming – you can connect the projector to media players and consoles. In addition, there is a dongle you can connect for other devices like Fire, Chromecast, and Apple TV.
This projector is highly versatile and is an excellent option for people with small rooms. It is also easy to install, with bright lamps that allow use without turning off the lights. As a result, it is ideal for media rooms and living rooms.
- Short throw, great for smaller rooms
- Turns on and off quickly
- Very good picture quality
- No rainbow effect
- Quiet fan
- Internal speakers are good enough for presentations
- No zoom
- Audio out only stereo
2. Optoma EH412ST
This model is another short throw that is an excellent choice for small rooms. It is a workhorse projector that is best for daily use.
- Short Throw – like the other model, you can enjoy the view of large screens up to 120 inches even if the projector is only four feet away from the wall.
- Connectivity Options – there are many ways to connect your input source. These are VGA, HDMI, and USB-A. For audio, there are audio in and out ports.
- Integrated Speaker – you can buy a speaker separately, but this one has a built-in speaker that you can use. The speaker that comes with the unit is 10 watts—not incredible enough for movies and gaming, but it will do for presentations.
- Lamp Life – no need to worry about lamp replacements. This projector can work up to 15,000 hours. At this rate, you can use it every day for five hours and never replace the lamp in eight years.
- DLP – it has Digital Light Processing, a proprietary technology from Texas Instruments. As such, the projection has high contrast. On top of that, what you see on screen has excellent pixel structure, and you will not experience color degradation.
This model can easily replace your television. It has low input lag, which is one thing that irks many projector users. However, it has no built-in Bluetooth or WiFi, which means it will not be easy to integrate it with a smart home theater system.
- Short throw ratio
- Supports 4K content
- Can be used in bright environments
- High color accuracy and contrast ratio
- Connectivity includes VGA, USB, and HDMI
- Supports 3D content from all HDMI sources
- No Bluetooth or Wi-Fi capabilities
- Weak on-board speakers
- No zoom or lens shift
3. ViewSonic PX701HD
This model is ideal for both office and home use, particularly gaming. Overall, it is one of the best gaming and home theater projectors in the market.
- Full HD – watch games and play movies in 1080 x 1920 resolution. This projector can produce a big viewing screen of up to 300 inches.
- Bright Environment – no need to turn off the lights, as the projector can produce up to 3,500 lumens of brightness. You can enjoy high video fidelity or quality in a bright room.
- Reduced latency – one thing that prevents gamers from using projectors is latency. This one has reduced latency by 16 milliseconds from the input. As such, it is ideal for gaming.
- Lamp Light – the lamp can last up to 20,000 hours. What this means is you can enjoy five hours of viewing time per day for ten years.
- Connectivity – it has ports for many devices like consoles, PCs, and Macs. You can also connect mobile devices. It has HDMI, USB-A, and more.
- Cinematic Colors – get an exhilarating experience with the Exclusive Super Color Technology. The projector offers a high resolution that delivers smooth images.
The ViewSonic PX701HD is one that I recommend for those who want to try out projectors. It is versatile enough for both home and office use. It has no 4K, but it does support 1080p. It is best for entry-level but cannot compete with models that offer 4K. It does have a built-in speaker that produces decent sound.
- Short Throw
- Decent built-in speaker
- USB-C connection with power
- Auto keystone
- Low input lag and gaming mode
- Remote is not backlit
- No horizontal keystone
- No USB type-A power
4. InFocus IN116xv
If lamp life is your concern, this projector is what you have been looking for. For its price, it does pack tremendous value for what it has to offer. It has HDMI input and Brilliant Color technology that makes viewing an incredible experience.
- Lamp Life – the lamp will last 15,000 hours. It does not compromise the quality of viewing. The projector can sustain long hours of crystal-clear viewing for many years to come.
- Surface Flexibility – one problem with projectors is that they are so picky with the surface. With this one, you get bright and crisp images on any surface. You do not need to buy white screens anymore. The lamp can produce 3800 lumens with a contrast ratio of 26000:1.
- Viewing Size – choose the viewing size that fits your environment. Set the projector to show between 28 inches and 300 inches of screen. However, you also need a good distance of at least 12 meters. What makes it a great projector is that you can move it further back by 12 meters without affecting the quality.
- Video Modes – decide how you want to view the resolution of the video. You can watch in 720p to 1080; view the best mode according to your input source.
It is easy to set it up, and there are several connectivity options. You can use your phone or iPad as input. However, you need to buy the LightCast Key, which is sold separately.
- Incredibly bright with excellent black levels and contrast
- Very quiet
- calibration menu
- Excellent image scaling for non-native resolutions (720p, 480p, 1080p)
- The zoom is minimal so make sure to work out throw distance before purchasing
- Shutting down the projector can take a bit of time
- Rainbow effect is noticeable
5. Optoma EH412
The predecessor of the EH412ST, this one comes with 4,500 lumens of brightness. Like the other Optoma models, I recommend this to people who want to view games and videos without turning off the lights.
- High Brightness – since you can use it in bright conditions, it is ideal for classrooms and meeting rooms where you do not have to turn off the lights.
- 4K Input – it works great if your source is 4K. It produces if paired with 4K HDR video sources like gaming. You can also render in 1080p.
- Resolution – the contrast ratio is 50,000: 1. It has a high color profile which enables it to produce rich colors. This resolution is what makes it a perfect option for gamers.
- Easy Set Up – once you have connected your input source, the projector has 3x zoom that makes it easy for you to make adjustments to the video quality.
You will also love that this projector has a 10-watt built-in speaker. It is a decent speaker, and you no longer need to buy separate ones. It is loud enough for small conference rooms. There are several input options like VGA, HDMI, and USB-A. With a long lamp life of 15,000 hours, you do not need to worry about replacement for years.
- Full HD resolution with 4K HDR support
- Offers 1.3x zoom
- Vertical Keystone Correction for flexible image set up
- Produces highly detailed visuals and excellent picture quality using projectors’ advanced DLP display technology
- 10-watt speaker
- Lamp life of up to 15,000 hours
- Not budget-friendly
What features should you look for in a Projector for Projection Mapping?
Projectors can be expensive, but they’re not always the best option. There are cheaper projectors out there that will work just as well and provide brighter images for projection mapping purposes. The best projector will depend on your budget, but a good place to start is with one that falls into the mid-range. Mid-range projectors are the way to go in order for you not only to get a good video but also to keep your budget. When going with cheaper projectors, quality will always be sacrificed which can make any creative work obsolete.
The contrast ratio is a measure of how well black and white are balanced with dark or light colors. Many people don’t think about this when they’re buying a projector and it can create a poor viewing experience if your projector lacks color accuracy. For the best possible viewing experience, it is important to buy a projector that has a wide contrast range so you can adjust your image to maximize your viewing experience.
Lamp Life Lifespan
Projectors for projection mapping can be very power-hungry. You’ll want to take this into account when looking at the different models available, as some may only last a short time before needing replacement due to their lamp’s durability or low bulb life span. Commercial use requires high-quality projectors, and for this reason, it is important to buy one with a long lifespan.
Projection mapping is a challenging process that requires great attention to detail. The brightness and color quality of your projector can have an impact on how well viewers enjoy the end result, so make sure you get one with high lumens for perfect results in brightly lit areas like day-time projections. If you want to do projection mapping in a dark area, use 1500-3000 lumens. But if the area is brightly lit up, use projectors of up to 4500 lumens and above. 3000 lumens may not work as well because the image quality will be duller.
Projection mapping is an incredible tool to showcase your work, but only if you have the right projector. The resolution plays a significant role in this case and will affect how well everything displays when projected onto surfaces such as walls or ceilings; higher resolutions allow for more detailed imagery without sacrificing clarity. For those who can’t afford the lofty price tags of 4K projectors, we recommend getting a 1080p device. It will provide you with HD projections and ensure that even small details in your work are clearly visible. The higher the resolution, the clearer and more detailed your projected image will be.
Short-throw projectors offer a clear and large image from short distances. These are better options for small rooms because they do not require much space to produce an impressive display, unlike long throw projectors. The high price tag on these projectors is matched only by their ability to project images up to 30 feet large from short distances.
If you want to make sure your images are as clear and crisp in real life, get a high-resolution projector. The higher the resolution of the projector, the more pixels it can display. Projections that include colors and animations are best projected at resolutions of 800 x 600 or higher. If you want a more memorable experience, then 4K projectors offer the perfect solution for your needs! However, they can be pricey so 1080p will work in most cases.
Projection Screen Size
The size of your projected surface is important for projecting quality images. It should align with the dimensions of your projector to ensure a satisfying viewing experience. Knowing the right mounting distance is important when choosing between short-throw projectors and long-throw ones.
Recommendations of use
Cables and connections
The image quality will depend on the type of cable you use. HDMI and DVI cables allow for better resolutions while VGA provides lower cost but less detail in your video output. It is important to know how long the cable should be, and using very long cables can result in lower-quality projection because of signal strength. To avoid this you could use repeaters that boost signal quality. It’s recommended to use shielded cables are the best way to avoid interference.
Transport and Precautions
Your projector is a powerful and versatile machine, but it can still fail if you don’t take care of it. You should always wait until your projector has cooled down completely before unplugging or moving the device – know that sudden power failures may also damage the lamp in some cases. If you use an LED or laser projector, it is not necessary to wait for your equipment to cool down.
Image Repetition Frequency
The image repetition frequency is measured in Hertz (Hz) and has a usual range of 50 or 60 Hz. This does not impact the performance of projection mapping, so you can safely ignore it when choosing which projector to use. If your projection mapping will be filmed, you might see vertical scan lines. To avoid this, change the frequency of your computer’s operating system or change the recording settings of your camera.
What kind of projector do I need for projection mapping?
Projection mapping requires a projector with a higher contrast ratio and brightness. The image will be more vivid when projected onto non-flat surfaces. Consideration of a resolution is important when it comes to projected mapping. A device with a 720P (HD) or higher video resolution will ensure clarity and quality for your audience.
How does 3D projection mapping work?
3D projection mapping turns any everyday objects into an interactive exhibit. Projection mapping is a visually stunning way to project imagery. This process uses preloaded resolutions and brightness levels that are all designed for maximum impact, so your viewers will be overwhelmed by what you’re showing them on screen.
What is projection mapping technology?
Projection mapping is a technique for projecting videos onto objects. It can be used to project videos on stages, runways, buildings or water. The mapping process takes the shape and texture of its surface, combining it with the projected video to create an interactive illusion.
How many lumens do you need for projection mapping?
For projection mapping in well-lit environments, you need at least 3000 lumens from your projector. The higher the lumen count, the brighter your display will be even if there is plenty of light around you. However, you need to have some kind of shade available because the sun’s glare will make everything look dull and washed out.
How much does 3D mapping cost?
3D projection mapping can be an expensive venture, with the average cost coming in at about $10k per minute. You’ll also need to consider the cost of projectors, media servers as well hard drives for storing data.
Projection mapping has proven to be a powerful new art form with limitless possibilities. If you are interested in using this technique for your own project, we hope the information shared here will help make your decision easier and enable you to find the perfect projector for your needs.