Best Projector for Projection Mapping 2020

Creating videos for projection mapping takes talent. Brilliant minds and incredibly skilled individuals put an awful lot of effort into their 3D mapping, so it is only natural to want the best projector for projection mapping.

Why, after doing so much hard work, would anyone want anything less than the very best projector to display with?

It wouldn’t make any sense.

Projection mapping at events requires a projector that will enhance the fantastic visual that has been created. If you are looking for such a projector, then read on. There are plenty on our list today that will more than meet your requirements.

Comparison Chart For Top 10 Projector for Projection Mapping

Image

Name

Key Features

Ratings

Price 

EPSON HOME CINEMA 1060

Resolution: 1080p
Contrast Ratio: 15,000:1
Lumens: 3100
Lamp Life: 10,000 hours

5/5

BenQ MH535FHD

Resolution: 1080p
Contrast Ratio: 15,000:1
Lumens: 3600
Lamp Life: 15,000 hours

4.8/5

Christie Digital Systems HD14K-M

Resolution: 1080p
Contrast Ratio: 10,000:1
Lumens: 12,000
Display Type: 09.5” 3DLP

4.7/5

Barco PHWU-81B

Resolution: 1920×1200
Brightness: 7,500 ANSI lumens
Technology: 0.67” DMD
Color Wheel: 4S standard (RGBW)

4.5/5

BenQ HT8050

Resolution: 4K
Brightness: 2,200 lumen
Contrast Ratio: 50,000:1
Display Technology: DLP

4.3/5

ViewSonic PG800HD

Resolution: 1080p
Brightness: 5000 lumens
Contrast Ratio: 50,000:1
Lamp Life: 2500 hours

4.2/5

BenQ MW612

Resolution: 1280×1200
Brightness: 4000 lumens
Contrast Ratio: 20,000:1
Lamp Life: 2000 hours

4/5

ViewSonic PX700HD

Resolution: 1080p
Brightness: 3500 lumens
Contrast Ratio: 22,000:1
Lamp Life: 15,000 hours

4/5

WOWOTO Mini Projector

Resolution: 854×480
Brightness: 4000 lumens
Contrast Ratio: 3000:1
Tech: TI DLP Display

3.8/5

InFocus IN112XA

Resolution: 800×600
Brightness: 3800 lumens
Contrast Ratio: 26,000:1
Lamp Life: 15,000 hours

3.5/5

5 Best Projector for Projection Mapping Reviews

1. EPSON HOME CINEMA 1060

Projection mapping requires a projector boasting high-resolution specs and the ability to make colors leap out at an audience.

The Epson Home Cinema 1060 is a projector that can do just that. Crystal clear images can be projected in 1080p up to a 300-inch size.

The contrast ratio of the projector is 15,000:1. This is a brilliant ratio for any mapping projector of this price. It will ensure that the contrast between lights and darks in your projection will look fantastic and add value to any viewer’s experience.

You may be tempted to spend more money getting a projector with a higher lumens figure. However, the 3100 lumens of brightness that this projector produces is more than enough to withstand bright light streaming through the windows.

Yes, a greater lumen will produce a better effect, but if you don’t have the available budget, you are still getting a projector that can do the job.

Highlighted Features

  1. Bright projector that can be used in a variety of settings
  2. Technology means the projector does not produce any rainbow effect
  3. Energy-efficient projector won’t lead to a shocking electricity bill

2. BenQ MH535FHD

Ben Q has produced a projector of high quality here. When looking for a projection mapping projector, this one most definitely has to come into your consideration.

The first thing to say about the MH535FHD is that it is capable of an incredibly detailed projection image. That image comes at 1080p and has a contrast ratio of 15,000:1. Essentially, everything we said about the previous projector on the list applies here.

Differences can be seen first in the brightness. Three thousand six hundred lumens will produce a more extraordinary screen in less than ideal light conditions. So that is a plus point in the column for Ben Q.

The second plus point comes when we look at lamp life. A video mapping projector has specs that mean the lamp does a lot of work. However, depending on the mode you use, this projector can go up to 15,000 hours of usage. That’s at least a decade if you are using 4 hours per day.

Highlighted Features

  1. IMAX level projection technology to ensure the very best projection mapping
  2. Short throw projection means big images in small spaces
  3. Zoom function allows flexibility in projector positioning

3. Christie Digital Systems HD14K-M | best projector for 3d mapping

3D mapping projectors don’t come much better than this beautiful model from Christie Digital Systems. It is a marvel to behold.

With 12,000 ANSI Lumens of brightness, this projector could be used to light an entire football stadium! Okay, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but you get the point being made. This projector will cut through ambient light and render it a redundant problem.

This projector features all sorts of cool tech such as LiteLOC, which enhances the colors across multiple screens; Comprehensive Color Adjustment lets you adjust every RGB channel, and Embedded Christie Twist, which allows you to warp images and blend edges.

If you a projection mapping for professional purposes and know what you are doing with projection mapping software, then this is the projector that you have to invest in.

People who excel in what they do need the best equipment. This is the best of the best.

Highlighted Features

  1. The most compact projector you can find in this range of projectors
  2. Get rich, vibrant color displays that enhance any projection mapping
  3. Efficient projector getting high brightness from 2 lamps rather than 4

4. Barco PHWU-81B

The Barco PHWU-81B is a stylish-looking projector with all the specs that a video mapping projector requires.

Boasting 0.67″ DMD technology, this WUXGA single-chip DLP projector will take your projection mapping to an entirely different level thanks to the 1920×1200 WUXGA resolution and 4S standard (RGBW) color wheel.

When projection mapping, you really want everything to look crisp and perfect. The brightness of images being projected is absolutely part of that. 7500 ANSI lumens brightness isn’t the best we’ve seen here, but it is still outstanding and comes at half the brightest projector’s price.

Will you need that much brightness from a projector? That depends on your surroundings. However, should you wish to save the lamp life, this projector handily has an eco-mode that can drop the brightness to 5,450 ANSI lumens.

In eco-mode, the projector is still brighter than some of the projectors we have seen running full capacity!

Highlighted Features

  1. DLP technology makes this a low-cost projector in the long term
  2. Projector can be easily upgraded with add-ons
  3. Intuitive controls menu makes the projector easy to use

5. BenQ HT8050

Every projector we have looked at today has one standout feature that sets it apart from a competitor. With the BenQ HT8050, that feature is the contrast ratio. It is 5-star quality, 50,000:1, and that means the color levels and contrast are cinema hall quality.

It isn’t just the contrast ratio that makes this projector stand out. It also has the best resolution of anything we have seen because it is a 4K projector. Projector onto a wide, large projection area, you will see the difference in quality even between a 1080p projector and this one. 4K takes everything to a whole other level.

Finally, the cost of this projector is astonishing. If you do a bit of research and look for projectors with similar specs, you will quickly see that those projectors can be up to 4 times more expensive than this one. We have no idea how BenQ can charge so much less for this great projector, but we’re more than happy to pay their quoted price.

Highlighted Features

  1. Incredible image contrast ratio produces mind-blowing projection mapping effects
  2. 4K UHD resolution provides cinematic images that will take your breath away
  3. 5:1 zoom gives you incredible flexibility on projector placement

How to Choose Right Projection Mapping Projector

There are many factors to consider when searching for the best projector for projection mapping. Here we take a look at the features projectors are offering that meets your needs.

1. Resolution

Projection mapping is needed to show off something truly incredible. To do that, you need to have the best resolution you can with your available money.

At the high-end of the market, you have 4k projectors. We’d recommend them to everyone, but unfortunately, not everyone is working with the same budget.

If you can’t afford a 4K projector or consider one extravagance too far, you need a 1080p projector, if possible. That is a high definition projector that will ensure the intricate details that you’ve put into your work are visible for all to see.

2. Contrast Ratio

The contrast ratio tells you of the balance between black and white, dark, and light colors. It is a feature that many people overlook, but a high contrast ratio can create an entirely different viewing experience when compared to a projector with a  low contrast ratio.

We’re not saying that you have to go with a 50,000:1 contrast ratio, though that would undoubtedly set your work worlds apart from others. But if possible, you should try to get a contrast ratio of 10,000:1+. This will entirely take your work to a different sphere.

3. Brightness

If you know you’re going to be doing all your projection mapping in dark rooms, or rooms with very little light, then you can afford to go for a projector with a lower contrast ratio. Mind you, we wouldn’t suggest anything below a 3000-lumen projector.

The problems with projector brightness start to creep in when you need to do your 3D mapping in rooms with a lot of light, or even outside.

A 3000 plus lumen projector will still provide a visible image, but you will begin to lose some of the quality.

Four thousand five hundred lumens will produce a very bright image with sunlight streaming in through windows. That is the type of projector you should be going for if the conditions you work in will vary greatly.

4. Lamp Life

The type of projectors we’ve been looking at is very powerful. This can result in decreased lamp life. Check the lamp life before purchasing any projector. For projection mapping, look towards 10,000 to 15,000 hours. That way, you will get a good few years of usage.

FAQ on best projection mapping projector

1. How do you map a projection?

Projection mapping is where you use projection technology to get a video image onto a surface such as a building or a road.

This requires a lot of pre-production work as the video images have to be designed to overlap to fit a 3D model.

Once you know what you will project onto, a lot of work has to go into calculating brightness and how shadows will affect the content being developed.

Once that is done, it then takes time to ensure the images’ alignment onto the projection surface.

Projection mapping requires a lot of skill.

2. Do you need a special projector for rear projection?

No. Every projector has the function to reverse or flip an image, so any of them can be used on a rear projection surface. What you may need, however, is a projector with a short-throw lens because of the space required for rear projection.

As the space for rear projection will likely be less than that available for front projection, either a short-throw projector with a 0.8:1 ratio or a projector with a decent zoom function is needed.

You will also want a bright projector so that ambient light does not interfere.

3. How many lumens do you need to project in daylight?

Daylight is a killer, especially to projectors that don’t have a certain level of brightness. If you’ve ever owned a budget mini projector, then you already know that very well.

Many will tell you that 3000 lumens and above should be used to project in bright rooms. That is very much the minimum requirement as far as we are concerned.

There isn’t a projector on the market that will do the job well to project in direct sunlight. So don’t even think about it. You need to have some kind of shade available, whatever the brightness of your projector.

4. Is projection mapping expensive?

Projection mapping is an extremely complex process requiring skilled designers and top-end equipment. That is never going to come cheap.

2D projection mapping will cost less than 3D projection mapping. It has been mooted that the average cost of projection mapping in 3D is $10,000 for a one minute video.

Whether that is expensive depends on what you expect after the projection mapping. This technique is a fantastic marketing tool, so if you are going to make a lot of money on the back of it, then the expense is relative.

Wrapping Up

The best projection mapping projector will blow the minds of those who are watching your creations come to life before them.

We have looked at some great projectors offering high resolution, high contrast ratio, and many other unique features at the cutting edge of modern technology.

Whichever of the projectors you go for from our list, you will see something spectacular unfold before your eyes.

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