Projector or TV: Which Screen Is Right for Your Home Theater?

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Let’s Break Down the Considerations for Each Display Option

When our team works on custom home theater projects in the Glencoe, IL area, we often hear: “Should I get a projector or TV?” This question used to be much easier to answer when the brightness, size, and price gaps were significant between the two options. Today, you can find projectors that are more competitive with TVs in brightness and price. Plus, some TV screen sizes have reached the triple digits.

The reality is that both display options are excellent depending on the environment and how they’re used. Below, we break down key considerations for each option to help you pick the right display type.

SEE ALSO: 5 Lighting Best Practices to Consider for Your Home Theater

When You Might Choose a Projector:

You Want to Emulate the Feel of the Cinema

If your home theater looks like a smaller version of a movie theater, then we recommend a projector. These spaces are meant to maximize the viewing experience with softer, more cinema-like picture rather than with an ultra-bright TV, which may need different brightness and contrast adjustments in a dark room designed for immersive viewing. Plus, you can watch film the way it was meant to be seen in ultra-wide aspect ratio as opposed to 16:9.

You Want Big-Screen Entertainment

Anyone who wants a private home theater likely wants a big screen. We’re talking 100 inches and up. If that’s you, go with a projector. Long-throw projectors can cast a display that measures 300 inches! Unless you want to fork out six figures for Samsung’s 292-inch Wall TV, then a projector is the winner.

You Can Control the Light in Your Home Theater

Light is a key element in home theater design. There’s a reason why movie theaters are dark and have no windows. If your home theater offers complete light control and you desire a dark movie-watching environment, then a projector’s reflected light will feel more comfortable on your eyes.

When You Might Choose a TV:

Your Home Theater Is Used for More Than Movies

Not all home theaters are private spaces designed for film. Some are more like media rooms in open areas of the home. If you also use your entertainment room for activities like listening to music, socializing, and reading, then you may prefer a TV that attracts less attention than a projector/screen setup and can blend with your décor when not in use (check out The Frame TV by Samsung).

Ambient Light Spills into the Room

If your home theater is more of a media room, it likely has windows. While you can cover these windows with room-darkening shades, a super-dark room isn’t always possible to achieve when it’s exposed to other living spaces in the home. In this case, TVs are more efficient at overcoming ambient light that spills into your media room—although ultrabright projectors paired with ambient light-rejecting screens aren’t a bad runner up.

You’re Working with Limited Space

Display sizes are limited to their environment. If your home theater or media room is small, your screen may need to shrink to maintain a comfortable and balanced view from your seats. While a TV fits the bill for this condition, you could still enjoy the picture quality of a projector with Sony’s ultra-short-throw, which casts an image as small as 80 inches.

If you need help choosing the right display, call on the experts at Avidia. We can recommend the best option based on your environment, use, and budget. As leading home theater installers, we work with the best names in video displays, including Sony, Samsung, and Screen Innovations. Let us help you design the perfect viewing environment for your home theater or media room.

Schedule a free consultation by contacting us here or sending us a message below. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Office:
655 Academy Drive
Northbrook, IL 60062
p:  (847) 868-9200