Most home theater projectors use an LED or bulb-based lamp design to project the image. Laser projectors use a different light source that allows them to provide a broader range of colors and a sharper image. Generally speaking, the best laser projector will offer a superior picture to a lamp-based projector.
We’ve rounded up our favorite laser projectors and reviewed them below. Taking everything together, the BenQ V7050i is our top choice. It combines a phenomenal picture with an ultra-short throw and bright lamp, as well as wireless streaming.
That said, each of the projectors below has its strengths. Let’s compare them side by side on the key features.
Important Features to Consider
The native resolution of a projector determines whether it’s capable of playing HD content with its full detail. As you might expect, a higher resolution typically comes with a higher price tag.
While 4K projectors aren’t nearly as expensive as they used to be, they still tend to cost at least $1,500, where Full HD projectors can be found for $1,000 or less. There are also an increasing number of projectors capable of 8K resolution, though these are still relatively rare and usually cost $10,000 or more.
All of the selected best laser projectors can produce at least 4K resolution (except Optoma GT1090HDRx). While none of the projectors on this list quite reach 8K resolutions, the HU810PW uses Super Resolution upscaling, adding even more detail to Ultra HD content and producing the sharpest, clearest picture on the list.
Projector with the best resolution: LG HU810PW
Throw Distance and Ratio
Another advantage of laser projectors is that they often have a shorter throw distance than lamp-based models, in some cases producing a 100-inch or larger image with two feet or less between the screen and wall. A short throw is especially important in smaller rooms, but even if you have plenty of space, this can give you more flexibility when you’re setting things up.
The Epson LS800, Samsung LSP7T, ViewSonic X2000B-4K and Optoma D2 are all ultra-short throw projectors, and can produce a 120” image with 2 feet or less between the screen and lens. We tested, that for the absolute shortest throw distance, the BenQ V7050i needs only 13” of distance for a 120” image and can produce a clear picture from as little as 2 inches away.
Best Short Throw Laser Projector: BenQ V7050i
Laser projectors are typically brighter than their lamp-based counterparts. There’s still some variation from one model to another, though. A quality laser projector can range anywhere from around 1,500-2,000 lumens on the low side to as much as 20,000 lumens or more.
Keep in mind that brighter isn’t always better. A lamp that’s too bright will be hard to watch for long spans of time and can lead to eye strain and pain. In a dedicated home theater or other dark space, 1,500-2,500 lumens is an ideal range. During our test in the bright space, the 4,000 lumens of the Epson LS800 ensured a high image quality in any space and was perfect for indoor/outdoor use, so you won’t need to wait until nighttime to see the picture. (More info about recommended projector brightness).
Brightest projector: Epson LS800
Product Name – Best Laser Projector
Keep in mind that brighter isn’t always better. A lamp that’s too bright will be hard to watch for long spans of time and can lead to eye strain and pain. In a dedicated home theater or other dark space, 1,500-2,500 lumens is an ideal range. During our test in the bright space, the 4,000 lumens of the Epson LS800 ensured a high image quality in any space and was perfect for indoor/outdoor use, so you won’t need to wait until nighttime to see the picture. (More info about recommended projector brightness). 3D projectors are in demand, if you want to check 3D projectors read our detailed guide.