5 Great Projectors for under $1000

Projector in Action
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Electronics can be expensive. It can be hard to stay in your budget, especially if you are looking to create a home theater experience in your home. If you want to keep your home theater projector purchase under $1000, you shouldn’t have a problem. There are many options from top-selling manufacturers with great sound quality, performance, features, design, and reliability. Here are a few tips and reviews to help you find the best home theater projector for under $1000. If you want to skip straight to the answer – the ViewSonic PX747-4K is our pick for the best home theater projector you can get for $1000 bucks. 

Home Theater Projector Buying Guide

Type of Home Theater Projectors

Multimedia Projectors

Used for general purposes, multimedia projectors are portable, thin, and lightweight. Sometimes used for a home theater they are mostly used for slideshows, video clips, or PowerPoint presentations. Multimedia projectors usually have a zoom lens and brightness ranges of 2500 to 4500 lumens. If you use one make sure the screen size is compatible with the throw ratio of the projector when choosing this type of projector. Also look for wireless and interactive functionality as well as the ability to show a presentation without using a computer. Beware that the visual output of multimedia projectors will be below what you want from a home theater projector.

Short Throw Projectors

Both short throw and ultra-short throw are an important subcategory when discussing projectors. A short-throw is considered less than 1:1 while an ultra-short throw comes in at 0.3:1. You usually won’t find a zoom lens on a short-throw projector. Some ultra-short-throw projectors use a mirror to project the image first before it is reflected onto the screen. They are also usually wall-mounted and should between 18 inches and 2 feet from the screen.

 Short-throw projectors are more often  is most often found in a classroom than in a home theater. They work well with digital whiteboards. Since they are meant for a small screen, a short-throw projector won’t have more than 3000 lumens. If you have limited space or need a brighter projector, look for a fixed installation projector that comes with interchangeable lenses instead. 


Home Theater Projectors

Image quality is the most important feature of any true home theater projector. The sub-$1000 range of home theater projectors usually come with lower brightness ranges than their more expensive peers.  They usually also have a cooling system allowing them to be more efficient while at the same time making them more awkward to install.

Considerations when choosing a home theater Projector

Resolution – Resolution refers to the number of pixels that found on the imaging chip measuring from top to bottom and then side to side. A high-definition projector that is made for use as a home theater projector will have the full HD 1080p or 1920 x 1080 pixels. Some 4K HD projectors have 4096 x 2160-pixel resolution, which is more than four times the detail of full HD.

 When your resolution is higher, each pixel size becomes smaller allowing for a seamless looking image. There should be a built-in scaler that will convert the incoming signals to match its “native resolution.” You may also see 1080p projectors that use “pixel-shifting”. This makes them compatible with 4K video sources that provide a sharper picture.


Picture contrast – One of the most important parts of good picture quality. Contrast measures the difference between the deep blacks and bright whites that a projector can show. A high contrast ratio gives you a picture with more subtle color detail and deep black color.


 This is a critical consideration when buying a home theater projector. Projectors usually have several lamp settings allowing you to boost contrast and reduce brightness. This allows you to get the achieve the best picture in a dark room. Some  4K projectors have HDR capability. This lets them decode video sources like an Ultra HD Blu-ray providing incredible picture contrast.


Light output – Typical brightness ratings range from 700 to 2500 lumens. You will find every projector has plenty of brightness to watch a movie in a dark or dimly-lit room. Hgh brightness ratings will allow you to watch a movie where there is ambient room light. This can also help if you project the movie on the wall or if you want to display an extra-large image.


 3D– High brightness levels can help to improve 3D since 3D glasses tend to dim the picture a lot. You won’t need a specific screen to show a 3D movie on but having a more reflective surface can help a 3D movie look crisp and bright.


Wireless Input– Having wireless input help reduce installation issue by letting you connect components to the projector without having to deal with cables. Units with a wireless receiver built into the chassis of the projector chassis and a small transmitter module placed near the video source can change all that. Simply connect an HDMI cable from the transmitter to the components and you are good to go. Keep in mind that they must both be in the same room and have a range of 32 feet.


Lens shift – Having a lens shift will make installing your projector easier. You will be able to move the projected image while you keeping the projector stationary. This is extremely helpful in room setups where you cannot place the projector in the perfect position.  You can set the projector off-center to where your screen is and still see a perfect image. 


Best Home Theater Projector Reviews

The ViewSonic PX747-4K provides an immersive experience that makes it feel like you are at the cinema.  With 3500 lumens, it is a powerful unit featuring high brightness and Ultra HD resolution. It can also support most mobile devices, Macs, PCs, gaming consoles, and media players.

 The ViewSonic has great mounting flexibility giving you a wide optical zoom and SuperColor technology. The immersive audio and bright visuals will fill any room with sound and brightness. This is one of the more affordable home cinema experiences that includes a powerful 10-watt speaker.


 Another benefit of the ViewSonic is its long lamp life. The ViewSonic reduces power consumption as you enjoy a breathtaking home movie experience. The 4K HD Resolution and the HDR Content Support help to provide razor-sharp details and lifelike color. Along with the projector, you also get a VGA cable, power cable, and a backlit remote control that comes with illuminated buttons.

The ViewSonic PX747-4K provides an immersive experience that makes it feel like you are at the cinema.  With 3500 lumens, it is a powerful unit featuring high brightness and Ultra HD resolution. It can also support most mobile devices, Macs, PCs, gaming consoles, and media players.


Epson Pro Ex9220 1080P WUXGA

Featuring great connectivity and vivid, accurate color, the Epson Pro EX9220 is a wireless projector with 3,600 lumens of brightness. It is known for its bold and colorful images and incredible image quality. This projector has a screen mirroring feature with Miracast allowing you to mirror photos, apps, and videos. You can also use it to share HD videos straight from a wireless device.


You can use the Epson Pro to project from a smartphone, laptop, or tablet. Setup is super-fast with a simple to scan on-screen QR code and image adjustments are easy and convenient. Supporting HDMI, this projector allows you to run audio and video with a single cable.


BenQ HT3050

The BenQ HT3050 is a short-throw projector that is easy to install and setup. With super quiet operation, you can actually hear the movie instead of just the projector. It also has a Smart Eco feature that conserves energy and an auto-standby mode that helps to prolong the lamp life.


The BenQ HT3050 uses its short throw feature to project a 100-inch image from 8.4 feet. Projecting the truest colors with 100% accuracy, it provides crisp, detailed, and sharp visuals that give you an incredible home theater experience. It also has a 20-watt stereo speaker that gives a dramatic boost to both treble and bass giving you incredible stereo sound.


You also get a factory calibration report that uses special software and instruments to adjust color levels, brightness, saturation, and color tracking. BenQ also features vertical and horizontal keystone correction that gets rid of trapezoid effects if the project is set up at an indirect angle. Plus, you get uncompressed streaming and large transmission bandwidth and there is an available optional wireless full HD kit that is the perfect companion to the BenQ HT3050.

Optoma HD39DARBEE 1080P High-Performance Home Theater Projector

The Optoma HD39DARBEE was created to give you an immersive experience with incredible depth and outstanding color. Images look great – whether it comes to seeing photos, watching movies, or playing games. You get incredible depth and detail in textures and skin tones. This results in a larger than life experience that needs very little maintenance.


The HD39Darbee features accurate and vibrant colors thanks to the 3,500 lumens and a 32,000:1 contrast ratio. You also 15,000 hours of lamp life when used in Dynamic Mode. The multimedia interface gives you support for MHL ports that enable various MHL devices to directly connect to the projector. This gives you great video and music playback and the ability to share webpages and pictures along with other digital media content.


Featuring full 3D viewing of content from almost any 3D source, the sRGB Display Profile provides accurate and rich colors when you use it with a Mac or PC. The 12-volt trigger is also compatible with power screens that allow you to turn your screen on at the same time as the projector. Full HD resolution gives you sharp details making it perfect for playing games and watching movies.


Integrated dare Vision technology uses neuro-biologic algorithms that give you extraordinary depth and object separation. Not only does it give you bright images, but also deep black-levels. It also includes vertical keystone correction as well as a large 1. 6 times zoom that gives you flexible placement no matter where you use it.

EPSON PowerLite 1781W WXGA

Super portable with a powerful performance, the Epson PowerLite features a sleek and lightweight design that includes built-in wireless projection along with 3200 lumens of color brightness. Providing incredible widescreen presentations, this projector only weighs 3.7 pounds and stands 1.7-inches tall. This convenient and easy to carry projector is great for those that travel a lot and need a projector for presentations.


You can use this projector wirelessly with any tablet, laptop, and smartphone. The Epson PowerLite is easy to connect with a USB Plug ‘n Play instant setup. Presentations are also easy to set up with the automatic vertical keystone correction feature providing amazing performance. This super-thin projector also gives you brilliant output with colors that are three times brighter than its competitors.


A widescreen and high definition along with HDMI video and audio connection provides HD quality using a single cable. This included WiFi module makes connections easy while the handy lens control lets you optimize the size of the image no matter where your projector is sitting in the room. for easy connection to notebooks or mobile devices. Other features include a sleep mode that will pause your presentation without having to turn off the projector, instant on and off, and a long lamp life of up to 5000 hours.


Providing consistent and true-to-life color, this machine projects images with dark, deep colors or a white screen with text. You can also control the projector wirelessly from your phone using the EPSON iProjection App.

Bottom line

 The ViewSonic PX747-4K delivers as the best home theater use projector for $1000. Featuring high brightness and Ultra HD resolution, you get an immersive experience that makes it feel like you are at the cinema. It can also support most mobile devices, Macs, PCs, gaming consoles, and media players.

Providing SuperColor technology, the ViewSonic has great mounting flexibility giving you a wide optical zoom. The 4K HD Resolution and the HDR Content Support help to provide razor-sharp details and lifelike color. The definite winner of the best home theater projector under 1000 is the ViewSonic PX747-4K hands down.

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