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Choosing an Education Projector: Specs and Features

Time:2020-02-24 Click:90
Several additional features impact an education projector’s overall picture quality. This holds true for interactive, short throw and network projectors.
Projection Technology
Most education projectors are based on DLP or LCD technology. Digital light processing (DLP) is the most-used projector tech for all types of applications. This includes the most basic projectors to the most advanced, such as those used in high-end digital theaters.
Light Source
All projectors use some type of light source to create projected images. There are three options: LEDs, lamps, and lasers.
LEDs are used in pico projectors – tiny models designed to be extremely portable.  Many are so small they can fit in a pocket or purse. They can be a great way to extend resources among classrooms. LED light sources are eco-friendly. They consume less power and generate less heat than traditional bulbs. They’re also mercury-free, for easier disposal and less hazardous waste. Because LEDs don’t contain a filament, they last significantly longer than traditional bulbs. They power on in an instant, for a fast startup – another reason they’re great classroom projectors. LED projectors are also cooler and quieter to operate than lamp-based projectors. On the downside, LED-based projectors are typically not as bright as those powered by other light sources. This can limit their use in some applications. In terms of lifespan, LED-based education projectors reign supreme, with over 30,000 hours of operational life.
Lamp-based education projectors have been around the longest and are the least expensive. Because of this, they can be cost-effective for lower-use applications. They’re common and popular classroom projectors. For frequent use, however, the need to replace bulbs and clean filters increase their total cost of ownership. Lamp replacement can also cause downtime, interrupting class when a bulb unexpectedly blows out. Lamp brightness and color tend to fade. However, the impact of this is often minimal. Because it happens over time it’s often not noticed. The lifespan of lamp-based projectors is shorter than LED- or laser-based projectors, typically 10,000 hours. Traditional bulbs are also the least eco-friendly option. They contain mercury and require appropriate disposal to minimize harm.
Laser is the latest thing in projection light source technology.  It offers several advantages. Education projectors with laser light sources have a higher up-front cost. But they can be quite cost-effective over time. This is thanks to their longer lifespan and lower maintenance needs. Laser projectors deliver precise color and high brightness levels that remain stable across their 20,000 hours of life. Another helpful feature for education is instant on/off. Unlike lamp-based projectors, lasers need no warm-up period. This adds efficiency and conserves valuable class time. Laser is a mercury-free, eco-friendly option. It consumes less power than traditional lamp-based projectors.
Color Processing Technology
Most education projectors will include some type of technology to enhance color performance. One of the better known is BrlliantColor™ by Texas Instruments. It’s used in many projector brands. Some manufacturers offer proprietary tech to expand upon BrilliantColor benefits. This includes ViewSonic SuperColor™.  This unique color wheel design delivers higher brightness and a wider range of true-to-life colors. The result is an immersive viewing experience in any lighting condition.
Native resolution refers to the number of pixels a projector has available to create an image. It’s typically shortened to simply “resolution.” The first number represents the number of pixels in each horizontal row. The second is the number of pixels in each vertical column. Multiplying the two delivers the total number of pixels the projector can display. The higher the resolution, the more pixels.
Resolution is the number of dots or pixels used to display an image. Higher resolutions mean that more pixels are used to create the image resulting in a crisper, cleaner image. High resolution is important for projecting detailed charts and graphs, text, and high-definition video. The resolution is indicated by a number combination such as 1920 x 1200. This indicates that there are 1920 dots horizontally across the display by 1200 lines of dots vertically, equaling 2,304,000 total dots that make up the image seen on the screen.
Higher-resolution education projectors can display a greater degree of detail. They reduce or eliminate visible pixelation, for crisper viewing at a closer range. They’re also more compatible with high-definition source content. For the most part, as resolution increases, so does cost. In general, for classroom use, ultra-high resolution isn’t needed for typical viewing material. Exceptions may include specialized classes with high-detail content such as science, technology or math.
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Source: ViewSonic