Beamers, sometimes misspelled as beemers or called projectors, use one of 3 technologies: DLP, LCD or LCoS
We will take a look at the difference.
DLP – digital light processing (single chip or 3 chips)
LCD – liquid crystal display
LCoS – liquid crystal on silicon
Working in short:
- DLP – lights reflects on a chip (or 3), made of millions of tiny mirrors, each mirror is a pixel
- LCD – light passes through glass panels on which the pixels act like shutters
- LCoS – light first reflects on a panel and then passes through a prism (combines both techniques)
3LCD => The LCD technology used in projectors.
All LCD projectors use 3LCD.
Pro’s and con’s :
|DLP||- sealed chip so no dust spots and no filter needed- single chip cannot go out of alignment- DLP chips don’t degrade||- rainbow artifacts (only on single chip)- dithering artifacts*- restricted zoom which makes placing in home more difficult|
|LCD||- no artifacts so cleaner picture- greater zoom so easier to place||- panel degradation (less with inorganic panels)- sensitive to dust spots**- can get dead pixels|
|LCoS||- no artifacts- sharp and high saturation and contrast||- runs warmer, so fan is louder- less common because chips are harder to mass produce|
* dithering artifacts occur because grey is made by turning black on and off again really fast.
** dust spots are not a problem when you regularly clean the filter.
There are a lot of misconceptions about the different types of beamers. Mostly because technology is developing so fast nowadays, it is almost impossible for websites to keep up.
- LCoS is barely more expensive than other technologies anymore.
- The rainbow and dithering artifacts are barely noticeable in the newer DLP projectors anymore.
- The screen door effect on the newest LCD projectors is barely noticeable anymore.
LED light source can be used with all 3 technologies, LCD, DLP and LCoS.
More and more beamers use a LED light source because of its economic use of energy and long life.
Normal beamer light bulbs usually have a lifespan of 1000 to 2000 hours,
but a LED light can have a lifespan of 20.000 to 50.000 hours.
Since normal beamers have gotten more commonly available and cheaper, our site will only list mini-beamers because they are still rare in Europe and the shipping costs will still be low enough for it to be worthwhile to order in China.
Practically all mini-beamers use LED light source, which is probably the reason why I can’t find any replacement lamps for them.
But when you do the math; if your lamp lives for 50.000 hours and you use your beamer for 10 hours a day, this should be 13.7 years.
By that time all cellphones probably have standard projectors build in anyway.
ANSI-lumen => American Nation Standards Institute. Measures white light per 1 m2
While ANSI-lumen is a good indicator of how bright the light of your beamer is you should know the following:
- With a LCD projector – 2000 lumens of white light, will also get you 2000 lumens of color light.
- With a DLP projector – 2000 lumens of white light, might only get you 1000 lumens of actual color light,the rest would be white light.