May 6th, 2021 at 09:21 am

Best Projector Under $500 – 4K Or 1080p? Which one?

best projectors under 500

Today, I’ll share with you the seven best FullHD projectors under 500. But, before I do that. I want to ask you something. 

Tell me a little bit about yourself. 

Who are you? 

  1. Are you a gamer? 
  2. Are you a pro in a meeting? 
  3. Or someone who just loves watching movies, like me. 

In all three cases, a normal-sized display is not going to work for you anymore. 

Because the main entertainment, professional meetings, and business presentations are only possible if you have the best projectors at your place.    

However, it all depends on your budget. Therefore, I divided this article into some different budgets: 

And finally,

7 Best projectors under 500 In 2021

ProjectorsRating
1. ViewSonic 3600 Lumens WXGA High Brightness Projector4.7
2. Epson VS250 SVGA – Best For Presentation4.6
3. ViewSonic 1080p PX700HD Projector4.6
4. Optoma HD143X 1080p 3000 Lumens 3D DLP Home Theater Projector – Best 1080p projector under 5004.5
5. Epson VS355 WXGA 3,300 lumens 3LCD Projector4.5
6. BenQ MH535FHD 1080P – Best Home Theater Projector Under 5004.5
7. GooDee YG600 2020 Upgraded4.5

Winner Under $500

My Views:

If you want a complete solution for home and business. I would recommend this ViewSonic PA503W. Moreover, it offers excellent advanced features for an affordable price. So, this is first second under 500 bucks projector on our list.

Highlights: 

  • Brightness: 3600 ANSI Lumens
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080p Full HD( 1200X 800 ) WXGA 
  • Display: DLP
  • Contrast: 22000:1
  • Throw Distance: 3.28ft – 36.02ft
  • Screen Size: 30-300 inches
  • 3D Compatible
  • Lamp Life: up to 15,000 Hours
  • Warranty: 3 years 

Overview:

Viewsonic is a WXGA DLP projector. It comes with 36000 Lumens, which ensures fantastic color accuracy with a contrast ratio of up to 22000:1. That is why we get an excellent image quality. It supports 1.1x optical zoom with vertical lens (+/-40 degree). Unlike previous version PA503X, its aspect ratio is 16:10.

Pros
  • It uses DLP technology instead of LCD.
  • It comes with a big projector screen, which can project up to 120 inches.
  • Like BenQMH530FHD, it also uses superEco technology, which is responsible for a better lamp life. It can last up to 15,000 hours.
  • The connectivity of this projector is also flexible as it allows you to connect media players, Mac, PC, and smartphone with input units, including HDMI, VGA, and others.
  • ViewSonic offers a 3-years of warranty with this projector.
Cons
  • It comes with a single HDMI port.

Bottom Line:

  • I found this projector the best for education and small business. However, Earlier BenQ MH530FHD was good in 2019, but somewhat, it is ideal for home users. On the other hand, ViewSonic offers more contrast and aspect ratio than BenQ. That’s is why I took it at the second position on our list.

Office Presentations

My Views:

My list of top projectors is not possible until I included any projector for everyday business presentations. However, My research on finding the best one, especially for presentations, completes with Epson VS250.

Highlights:

  • Brightness: 3200 Lumens
  • Resolution: 800×600 (SVGA)
  • Display: 3LCD
  • Contrast: 15000:1
  • Screen Size: 30 – 350 inches

Overview:

The Epson VS250 is one of the most popular portable projectors from Epson, and it offers aa wide range of connectivity and compatibility options, including tablets, Smartphones, Laptop/computer, Gaming consoles, and many others. When it comes to the brightness of the projector, it offers 3,200 lumens with the contrast ratio of up to 15000:1.

Pros
  • It is a high-quality projector and feels quite premium with an innovative design.
  • Brightness and colors are quite accurate and vivid. It works perfectly even in Well-Lit rooms
  • It comes with FAN Noise ECO mode technology. Thus, it is quiet compared to the previous model.
  • With small image adjustments and convenient control, it can be set up in no time.
Cons
  • It doesn’t include any audio output port.

Bottom Line:

  • After comparing it with other models, I found it best in terms of brightness, contrast with accurate, vivid color balance. Therefore, I can recommend this projector to everyone – whether you’re looking for home theater or business occasions, it won’t disappoint you. However, I consider it the best for office presentations.

Best 1080p projector under 500

My views:

When it comes to gaming projector under $500, my mind only thinks of ViewSonic PX700HD. I consider it a better option for both home and gaming. So this is our third projector on my list.

Highlights: 

  • Brightness: 3500 ANSI Lumens
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080p Full
  • Display: DLP
  • Contrast: 12000:1
  • 3D Compatible
  • Lamp Life: up to 15,000 Hours

Overview:

The ViewSonic Px700HD is a Full HD (1920×1080 resolution) and 3d compatible projector. However, it is not a short-throw projector, just a normal one. But, it comes with reduced input latency in order to improve the gaming experience. Plus, it has SuperColor technology which ensures a wide color range for perfect images.

Pros
  • Lamp life is fantastic; it can last up to 15,000 hours.
  • We can expect smooth images without delay from this projector.
  • Gamer won’t be disappointed as it comes with reduced input latency, which is ideal for action-packed gaming.
  • It comes with dedicated sports mode with SuperColor technology.
  • It offers extensive connectivity options such as dual HDMI and USB.
Cons
  • Lack of horizontal keystone.

Bottom Line:

  • ViewSonic made this projector keeping gamers in mind. That’s is why ViewSonic has put its extra efforts in order to improve the gaming experience. Whether it is cinematic colors or reduced input latency, in results, we get smooth images without any delay. So, This is your gaming projector under $500.

Best for Gaming

My Views:

Optoma HD143X is another option if you want home theater projector. However, Above both, projectors are also good for home users, but they are a bit cheaper. That’s why I took this projector in the third position on our list. Being an expensive projector, it offers excellent features and advanced technologies if compared to others.

Highlights: 

  1. Brightness: 3000 ANSI Lumens
  2. Resolution: 1920 x 1080p Full HD( 1920X 1080 ) WXGA 
  3. Display: DLP
  4. Contrast: 23000:1
  5. Throw Distance: 1.47ft – 1.672ft
  6. Screen Size: 30-300 inches
  7. 3D Compatible
  8. Lamp Life: up to 12,000 Hours

Overview:

The Optoma HD143x is a full HD DLP home theater projector. It comes with 3000 Lumens of brightness for lights-on viewing. It offers throw ratio from 1.47ft to 1.62ft with 1.1x optical zoom. It also supports MHL with screen project size from 28 to 301 inches. Unlike BenQ and ViewSonic, it has 10w in-built speakers, whereas BenQ and ViewSonic come with 2W.

Pros
  • An excellent full HD resolution 1920 x 1080.
  • It comes with 1.1x optical zoom with 1.47ft to 1.67ft throw ratio.
  • It offers extended impressive Lamp life up to 12,000 hours.
  • It comes with multiple input ports including 2xHDMI ports, audio-out jack, 3d Sync port, 12v trigger, and USB power port.
  • Installation and setup of the projector are quite straightforward.
Cons
  • It doesn’t support Dolby.

Bottom Line:

  • Under 500 bucks, this projector offers excellent features, whether it is its resolution, contrast ratio, or brightness. If you are a big-screen fan, then you won’t find any better projector than this. However, it is a bit pricey if compared to others, but worth the money.

Best For Presentations

My Views:

Epson is known for their 3LCD technology which they have been using for a long. However, I am not a big fan of LCD over DLP. Even though there some advantages of LCD projector too. So, this was the reason which forced me to take this projector at the 4th position on our list.

Highlights: 

  • Brightness: 3300 ANSI Lumens
  • Resolution: 1280 X 800 WXGA
  • Display: 3LCD
  • Contrast: 15000:1
  • Throw Distance: 1.49ft – 1.72ft
  • Screen Size: 33-320 inches

Overview:

The Epson VS355 is a WXGA 3LCD projector. It is quite bright as it comes with 3,300 Lumens. Plus, it ensures more accurate colors in even daylight. It uses 3-chip technology with the 3LCD display, meaning we get Vivid Color images with WXGA HD resolution.

Pros
  • 3,300 Lumens of equal color balance and white brightness.
  • I found it quite portable, and replacement of the bulb is also easy.
  • It supports multiple input options, meaning we can all types of smart gadget, including laptops, smartphones, and media player.
  • Setup the projector is quite simple and takes only a couple of minutes.
  • The native resolution, it uses WXGA excellent standard, which ensures a better resolution than SVGA and XGA.
Cons
  • It doesn’t have audio out port.

Bottom Line:

  • If compared to VS350, the VS355 is far better as it comes with WXGA, which ensures 2x more resolution than SVGA. I also compared this projector with BenQ as well, and I found at some points, this was better in terms of brightness and contrast. So, I would love to recommend this projector for people who are looking for an HD-quality presentation.

Home Theater Projector Under $500

My Views:

The Benq MH535FHD is my fifthall-time favorite projector under 500 buck in terms of brightness, contrast, compatibility, and even lamp life. If you have read the guide below, then you might know why I am taking this projector in the fifth position on our list.

Highlights: 

  • Brightness: 3600 ANSI Lumens
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080p Full HD( 800X 600 ) SVGA 
  • Display: DLP
  • Contrast: 15000:1
  • Throw Distance: 3.9-43ft
  • Screen Size: 100-300 inches
  • 3D Compatible
  • Lamp Life: up to 15,000 Hours
  • Warranty: 3 years 

Overview:

Benq MH535FDH is a perfect choice for home users. It is a DLP type of projector and allows us to watch movies, sports, or any content in full HD. It offers high contrast ratio 15000:1, which ensures high-quality images without any compression or downscaling.

Pros
  • Picture quality is top of the line as it offers 3600 lumens ANSI, which is quite bright.
  • Contrast ratio 15000:1 ensures a tremendous sharp image on the screen.
  • With it, we can expect the project screen size from 100 to 300 inches.
  • Long-lasting lamp life up to 15,000 hours.
  • It also comes with multiple connectivities including USB, VGA, dual HDMI, TV, and AV capability.
  • Benq offers a 3-years of limited parts of warranty with this projector.
  • Setup is quite easy and simple.
Cons
  • Mounting holes look odd.

Bottom Line:

  • I’ve used this projector for several years without any issues. However, I found that in-built speakers are not above my expectations. So, If you want to buy a projector for home entertainment, then this Benq MH535FDH is going to be the best option for you. In other words, it is your home theater projector.

For Entertainment

Highlights:

  • Connectivity: 2x HDMI, 2x USB, 1x VGA, 1x AV
  • Display Technology: LCD
  • Display: DLP
  • Contrast ratio: 3000:1
  • Native Resolution: 1280×768 (1080p supported)
  • Max Screen Size: 230″
  • Warranty: 5 years Factory Support

Overview:

The seventh projector on my list is GooDee 2020 YG600. It is an upgraded model supporting 1080p Full Hd resolution. However, its native resolution is 1280*768p. In this upgraded version, GooDee has improved the brightness — claiming up to 80%.

With the maximum screen size of up to 230″ and an aspect ratio of 16:9/4:3, it also includes two built-in 3W speakers. For the optimal viewing experience, GooDee recommends 44″-230″ with distance 4.9-18ft. The projector comes with a 5-year of factory support with a 100% refund policy.

Pros
  • A broad range of connectivity options: 2 HDMI, 2 USB, VGA, and AV ports.
  • Built-in 2x3W internal Hi-Fi Stereo speakers.
  • Excellent sharpness with 720p native resolution.
  • It uses an advanced cooling system technology for heat dispersion.
  • It allows keystone rotating and features focus key for better performance and adjustment.
Cons
  • Internal speakers are not that impressive; you might need external for better sound.

Bottom Line:

  • In my testing, I found that the projector was brighter than other projectors. Moreover, with a contrast ratio of 3000:1 and wider viewing, making this projector an ideal choice for outdoor places, such as backyard, camping, and garage. In my opinion, you can buy this projector for playing videos, presentation, gaming, and outdoor movies.

Buying Guide: The Final Criteria Which Helps You In Finding The Best Projector Under 500 Dollars. 

When it comes to buying the best projector under $500, make sure you are following some considering points, which I use in order to buy a good projector, to make a good deal and smart choice. It actually doesn’t matter what is your intention to buy the projector, whether you’ll be using it for gaming, entertainment, or office. The criteria or key factors will be the same.

So let’s get into these nine considering key factors in order to buy a great $500 projector.

1. Type of a projector

It is as clear as it should be, the only two types of projectors you can find on the market these days: DLP & LCD.

I am not saying that DLP is better than LCD or LCD is better than DLP. In my opinion, both have their advantages and disadvantages in terms of picture quality, motion, and price.

Let’s compare them with each other:

A. DLP vs LCD

DLP
Pros:
  • 1. As compared to LCD, you might see more sharp picture quality with this type.
  • 2. When it comes to 3D, you have to stick to this DLP.
  • 3. DLP projectors are brighter than LCD.
  • 4. It ensures fast motion if compared to LCD.
Cons:
  • 1. Dark color’s rendering has always been a problem with DLP types of projectors.
  • 2. You possibly might face rainbow effect issues.
LCD
Pros:
  • 1. If compared to LCD, it is not as bright as DLP.
  • 2. No issue with dark color’s rendering.
  • 3. It is cheaper than DLP.
Cons:
  • 1. It is not good or ideal for 3D.
  • 2. Fast motion is not as good as DLP.

2. Screen Size:

I consider the screen size of the projector the second most important key factor. However, I am not talking about the screen which you see on the projector. Actually, it is a projector’s projection size, which we see on the wall or projector’s screen. You can use the projector with its maximum and minimum size.

It all depends on the surface you want your projector to project upon. Moreover, the distance between the projector and the screen also matters. So, you have to keep the distance in mind too while setting up a projector. You can use a projector screen distance calculator in order to line up your measurements.

3. Brightness

Brightness has always been a crucial task while setting up a projector. It matters a lot because it can give you a headache. So, the only thing you can do is to determine the brightness level as per your location, requirement, or needs.

Let me explain, Suppose you are using your projector somewhere which is quite dark, then you can simply go with 1000 lumens. It would work perfectly. In other words, any 1000 lumens projector would be a better option for the night.

However, if you intend to use a projector in daylight or as outdoor, then go with a brighter projector with around 3000+ lumens. It is my own experience as I tested it with all the different lumens.

4. Contrast

Just like the brightness of a projector, the contrast also works in the same way. Basically, it is a difference between dark and light, meaning an image you see on the screen can be more contrast or dimmer. So, you have to make sure you’re buying a projector that has a good wide contrast range.

5. Resolution

It is as simple as it sounds, in order to get better picture quality, the projector required a better resolution. However, it is not going to be that simple as most of the projectors come with a fixed resolution. So, we should have a projector that has a wide array of fixed resolution that can allow you to choose according to your needs.

It is also obvious that you have to spend more money when it comes to buying a high-resolution projector. If you wish to see the best quality images, go with any best outdoor projectors.

6. Throw Distance

As you know, the distance between the projector and the screen is responsible for clearer image quality, right? So, throw distance means you can get a clear image even after the maximum distance can your projector have. In other words, it simply lets you know how far you can put your projector until the screen gets blur image. And this range may vary by projectors. Usually, the projectors allow extending the range from a couple of feet to 15 feet.

But, if you buy an expensive projector, then this range can be up to 30 feet. When the distance is concerned, It is up to you which projector you should buy according to your distance requirement.

7. Bulb Life

When it comes to buying a projector, people first think of bulb life. How long will it be alive? Yes, it is a very important key factor that should come to your mind as it is the most expensive part of a projector.

So, if bulb life is concerned, I would suggest that your projector must have a bulb life up to 10,000 hours or more.

8.Connectivity

When the Connectivity comes to our mind, we first think of a wireless or wired connection, right? Yes, both options are available for you: Bluetooth and HDMI. However, if you connect it via HDMI cable, you’ll get a better picture quality. So, make sure your projector has these connectivity options.

9. Compatibility

The last thing which I want to include in this guide is the compatibility of a projector. Make sure your projector supports both Mac and PC.

So consider these nine key factors and keep them in mind before buying your first projector. Whether it is outdoor, gaming, star, 4k, or even under $500. You will be able to make a smart choice.

How to buy a projector that costs below $500? Five go-to steps For 2021.

You and I clearly know a projector is a perfect tool for homes and businesses. So, when it comes to presentations and home entertainment, we need a good projector. However, choosing for the intended use is not going that easy, especially in 2021, where the market is full of various types of projectors. So, I’m here to help you and let you know how you can buy a projector that will suit your needs. 

Here are my top three go-to steps for buying a projector under your budget. 

Step 1: Determine your intended use and space in your home. 

Yes, this is our first step to consider before buying any projector as it will us to narrow mouth the most crucial attributes. In this step, you’ve to figure out things, such as weight, location, space, and purpose of a projector. This step takes only 2 minutes. 

Step 2: Two most important factors about a projector that we need to keep in mind. 

The first is the resolution. For example, if you intended to use a projector for presentations in your office, you can go for a projector that offers a resolution of 800 x 600 DPI. On the other hand, if you’ll use it in an auditorium or a large room, you should go for atleast 1024 x 768 or higher. Always remember, the more the resolution, the higher the picture quality you’ll get. 

The second is brightness and contrast. Projector’s brightness and contrast are the most important factors to be considered. You measure brightness in lumens. If your room is small, it requires 500 to 1,000. A bright-lit large room requires more than 2,000 lumens – any $200 projector will be an ideal option. And, your backyard projector requires more than 2,500 lumens.

Step: 3: Your budget!

Like other factors, we also take a look at the price of a projector. In other words, how much we can spend on a projector as they come in a broad range of prices. Furthermore, we also spend on other necessary accessories, such as the projector’s screen, monitor, sound, stand, cables, and many others. So always consider your budget. 

 

FAQs: Most Common Questions Answered

Which Projector will be best for Home purposes under $500?

There is no doubt, our first projector on the list – ViewSonic PA503W can easily outrank others if home and small business projectors are concerned.

How much should I spend on projectors?

It entirely depends on your needs. If you want to buy a good projector for outdoor uses, then you have to spend around $500 to $1000. On the other hand, if want for indoor purposes, then go for a projector that comes under $500. 

Can I expect a 4K projector under $500?

No, you can’t. I didn’t find any $500 projector that offers 4k resolution. Meaning, you have to spend some more or check my article ‘5 best 4k projectors in 2021′. 

Is 500 Lumens enough for a projector?

In 2021, I would say – No. However, the 100″ screen projection requires only 350 lumens, according to SMPTE (the motion picture technicians). If you want a good quality image on your screen, then it is recommended that you go for a projector that offers atleast 1000 lumens. 

What projectors can I use with my 3D glasses?

 Any projector that offers DLP technology as most of the DLP projectors are designed for 3D technology so that we can use them with 3D glasses. However, it doesn’t mean that all DLP types of projectors support 3D technology. Moreover, you also have to make sure the content which you intend to play should be 3D as well. 

Conclusion:

Guys, It is time to wrap up this article “best projector under $500.” In this article, I tried to include projectors that can suit each and every type of person from home users to gamers.

All projectors which I am sharing with you guys are tested and reviewed by me. I used them for a couple of months, then sharing my experience with you.

I also use the same guide when it comes to buying any projector. Now, I hope, this article will help you in finding the best one.

However, If you think there is still something missing and can be added in this article. I would love to hear from you, and I’ll try to improve this article. For that, I need your 2 minutes. Just comment below and let me know. Thank you for reading and have a beautiful day!