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Purchasing A Slide Projector Part One

Oct 11, 2007
With so many slide projector manufacturers, and types of slide projectors to choose from, selecting the right one for you may seem like an impossible task, but it does not have to be.

With some research, a little know how, and the help of this comprehensive article, you can have the confidence in knowing you are purchasing a slide projector that is right for you.

Most slide projectors on the market today feature one of two main projection technologies LCD and DLP. LCD stands for liquid crystal display, and is the oldest and most widely used projector technology.

With this type of projector, three LCD panels located inside the projector separate the color spectrum into red, green, and blue, and the passes through these panels to form the image on the screen.

With LCD technology, there is generally better color saturation, meaning that the colors are more vibrant and crisp. The images and data re typically more detailed with an LCD projector as opposed to a DLP as well, but it should be noted that DLP is a relatively new technology that is constantly being improved upon and updated.

DLP stands for digital light processing, and is a newer technology that reflects the light of the projector lamp off of thousands of tiny spinning mirrors and also, through a color wheel, which produces the image shown on the screen. DLP is a proprietary technology developed by Texas Instruments.

With DLP technology, there are generally less pixels available, making DLP the better choice for video projection, which is the reason that many home theater enthusiasts prefer DLP over LCD.

DLP technology is also capable of producing higher contrast ratios than the average LCD projector. Contrast ratio is a term used to describe the measurement of black on black levels on video.

The main weakness that has been observed with DLP technology is the tendency of these spinning color wheel projectors to produce an artifact on the screen which is commonly known as the rainbow effect. Not everyone, however, can see this effect, and with technological improvements and todays line of six segmented color wheel DLP projectors, this problem is steadily decreasing.

LCOS stands for alternative liquid crystal on silicon, and is a very high resolution and typically higher priced type of projector than the average LCD and DLP products.

LCOS projectors use three LCOS chips, one to modulate red, green, and blue light channels. There is no spinning color wheel, and no rainbow effects or visible pixels due to the extremely high, i.e. SXGA 1365x1024 and above resolution class.

The disadvantages to LCOS technology are a lower contrast ratio, and limited lamp life, but if you require the highest resolution, than this type of projector may be the right choice for you.

Now that you know about the different types of projector technologies available, the next step is to determine your projector use needs.
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