Put 400 dollars in your pocket, go through the buying guide, take FAQs into account, assess your needs, pick the projector from the list, then enjoy watching your favorite content at your home.
Who likes watching movies, playing games, and business presentations on a small screen? If you think that buying a TV is the only option when these things are concerned. Of course, you can get an 80-inch television or above and spend a lot of money on that, around $1000 or more. Another option that is better than a TV, which I prefer, is to buy one of the best projectors for under $400. After that, you’ll be the only limit for the projection size as per your content.
However, buying a good projector entirely depends on many factors, it includes brightness, contrast ratio, display technology, throw distance, screen size, lamp life, and many others. You can go through them one by one in the buying guide below; it can help you find the perfect projector for your needs.
What is the best projector under $400? The ViewSonic PA503W is the overall best projector in this price range. It supports the full HD 1920x1080p resolution with an aspect ratio of 16:10.
5 Best Projectors Under 400 in 2021
|Epson VS250 SVGA||Spreadsheets/Video Conference||4.8|
1. FANGOR 701 Projector 1080p – Overall best Under 400
- Native 1920x1080p resolution
- Maximum screen projection up to 300″
- UltraHD video support
- 8500 Lumens
- 10000:1 contrast ratio
- 100,000 hours of lamp life
The FANGOR 701 is a native full HD 1920×1080 pixels packed yet 4K video supported projector. Its design is the first thing; it says a lot – a well-finished, light-weight, and ensures lower noise than its competitors. Since most projectors, even expensive ones, fall ill when the dust comes its way, results in black spots on the projected image, the FANGOR 701 handles it pretty well as it has adopted a fully sealed-tight design.
Of the many features and technologies it carries, it seems to know everything about the future and its ability to pair wireless devices with a single click. Equipped with 7800 lux of brightness and a high contrast ratio of 10,000:1, the FANGOR 701 takes full responsibility to bring you a sharp, vivid, crystal clear image on the projection screen that can go up to 300 inches.
For around 400 bucks, the FANGOR ensures easy screen synchronization, offering a Wi-Fi connection to mirror the screen. Therefore, watching movies or your other favorite content using the widely-accepted Miracast feature is child’s play to the projector. Besides, its digital keystone correction enables you to adjust the projection directions remotely.
Pros & Cons:
What I like:
- Its sealed optical design
- Up to the mark, incredible picture quality, even for the 4K
- Up to 300 inches projection size
- Wireless connectivity
- Digital keystone correction
- Its high-quality customized carrying bag
- Its setup is easy and convenient
What I don’t:
- Speakers are okay for home use but not for business.
The FANGOR 701 is for everyone who wants to take a big-screen experience at their favorite places, whether indoors or outdoors, for movie nights. It offers everything that one would need in their day-to-day life, from wireless connectivity to wired, without compromising the budget.
2. YABER Y31 Full HD– For Home Theater
- Native FullHD 1080p, 4K supported
- LCD technology
- Brightness 8000 lumens
- 4D ±50° vertical and horizontal keystone
- Projection size from 45 to 300 inches
- 16:9/4:3 aspect ratio
- 80000 hours of lamp life
The YABER Y31 is among the top devices that offer native full HD resolution. However, it’s not only about its impressive resolution but also its capability of handling Ultra HD content when connected with HDMI-enabled devices such as your laptops and smartphones. It doesn’t stop here; its ± 50° 4D vertical and horizontal manual keystone correction is the key feature that most manufacturers can’t think of implement for under 400 bucks.
Another area where the YABER Y31 draws attention is its brightness and contrast. Over 8000 lumens of brightness and a 10,000:1 contrast ratio ensure high-quality, detailed images on its maximum projection size of 300 inches. Unlike others, you might not see any downscaling or compression projection issues with the projector, as its one-click -25% zoom function and one-click restore handle the overall image adjustment pretty well.
Moreover, it has dual 3W built-in stereo speakers utilizing the SRS technology to provide a better sound quality as per the content being played. However, these are decent speakers for normal usage, don’t expect them as good as external speakers.
Pros & Cons:
What I like:
- Overall best picture quality, clear, sharp, and enough bright
- Native True Full HD resolution
- great adjustability options
- Its double-sided cooling system, three cooling fans
- Multiple connectivity options
- Easy setup
What I don’t:
- Its fan noise could be improved.
The YABER Y31 is an amazing option for all sorts of people under their budget. Its brightness, contrast, and resolution are some of the primary reasons to buy the projector. Plus, you have dual support of HDMI ports and USB ports. The only disappointment is its fan noise; it comes in action and can be heard sometimes when the content is really quiet.
3. ViewSonic PA503W – Small Businesses & Education
- Display technology: DLP
- Brightness: 3,600 lumens
- Contrast: 22,000:1
- resolution: 1080p Supported
- Screen size: 30 to 300 inches
- Throw distance: 3.28 to 36.02 ft
- Warranty: 3-year
The ViewSonic PA503W is a DLP type projector. It boasts 3600 lumens with the contrast ratio 22000:1; meaning a brighter, clearer, and vivid image. It comes with a native resolution 1280×800 and can support Full Hd 1080p with the aspect ratio 16:10 when it is used with the recommended throw distance between 3.28ft to 36.02 ft. Plus, long lamp life up to 15,000 hours with 1.1x optical lens zoom.
It allows multiple connections inputs if connectivity is concerned, such as Audio output, 3.5mm audio jack, HDMI, VGA In, VGA Out, RCA, and Mini USB type B. The compatibility of the projector is great, you can connect all the modern gadgets whether it is your laptop for a gaming console.
Pros & Cons:
What I like:
- The accuracy of colors is amazing as it uses Supercolor technology.
- It produces bright images even if we use it in daylight.
- 16ms Input Latency, which is very low and delivers images without any delay.
- It is capable of displaying 3d images when we connect it with 3D Blu-ray players via HDMI.
- Vertical keystone correction works great.
- It comes with a 3-year of warranty with ViewSonic customer support.
What I don’t:
- Single HDMI port.
The ViewSonic PA503W is a versatile projector; you can use it for home, education, or your business environments. That is why this is my favorite projector. After using it for a long, I didn’t have any issues with the picture. It is quite bright, we can use it as an outdoor projector. So, It is a complete feature-packed projector under $400.
4. Epson VS250 XGA 3LCD Projector – Spreadsheets/small Businesses
- Display technology: 3LCD
- Brightness: 3,300 lumens
- Contrast: 15,000:1
- resolution: 800×600 (SVGA) and 1080p supported
- Screen size: 35 to 180 inches
- lamp life: 30,000 hours
Epson VS250 SVGA is an LCD 3 type projector. It is bright, vivid, and delivers a crisp image with amazing color accuracy. When brightness and contrast are concerned, it is equipped with 3200 lumens and a contrast ratio of 15,000:1. Besides, It can project from 30inches to 350 inches – large screen size, which you can enlarge or reduce using its zoom ring feature.
It also offers multiple connection options; it uses HDMI as standard connectivity. Plus, it is compatible with many devices, whether it is your latest laptop or a media player. It is an SVGA model with native resolution 800×600 pixels. If you want higher resolution models, you can go for XGA, WXGA, and WUXGA, but for that, you have to spend a little more.
Pros & Cons:
What I like:
- The brightness of the projector is amazing and accurate, even in a well-lit room.
- It has several projections modes, including mounting, which is very handy.
- It supports the latest compatibility, HDMI port allows connecting new generation laptops and media players.
- Setup and installation are simple and straightforward.
- Easy slide correction for horizontal keystone.
What I don’t:
It doesn’t have an audio jack.
The Epson VS250 can be an ideal option for those who are looking for a projector that is portable and good for everyday business presentations. However, the resolution you get with it is not high, but you can go for a higher model if your primary concern is the resolution. Other than that, it is a good projector under $400.
5. BenQ MW535A 1080p SVGA – Office/Home
The BenQ MW535A is an amazing DLP projector packed with 3600 ANSI lumens and a 15000:1 contrast ratio. It can produce a screen size from 30 inches to 300 inches, while the recommended screen size is 120 inches from 13 feet and 2 inches distance.
Moreover, It comes with a lamp life of up to 2,000 hours with flexible connectivity options such as 2x HDMI ports, 2x VGA ports, and audio In/Out ports. Plus, it is compatible with most devices, whether it is your gaming consoles or smartphones.
Pros & Cons:
What I like:
- It can enhance flexibility in your office or meeting rooms.
- It is using ECO technology in order to extend its lamp life, and it can be bright up to 15,000 hours.
- The ECO blank button is for hiding the screen; it saves the lamp’s life and power up to 70%.
- Vertical keystone and 1.2x zoom allow easy setup.
- A 3-year of warranty, whereas 2,000 hours lamp warranty.
What I don’t:
- Short bulb life, it should be higher.
If compared to other models, BenQ is far better than its similar range projectors. It is 2020 model and can be an ideal option for education, home, and your office as it is a WXGA 1080p supported model with high brightness. So under $400, you can’t get better than this projector.
Buying Guide: The Criteria for your Under 400 Projector
This Buying Guide will help you in finding the best projector under $400. However, there are some essential key factors you have to keep in mind before buying one. It doesn’t matter what type of projector you are looking for, whether it is for home entertainment, business presentations, or gaming.
1. Projector Display
There are many different types of displays available to you. But, here I’ll share only two most popular ones: LCD and DLP
LCD: Pros & Cons
- It is known for bright picture quality.
- This type of display is considered the best for dark colors.
- LCD displays are cheaper and affordable than DLPs.
- Not good for 3D effects.
- Fast motion issues.
DLP: Pros & Cons
- It is known for sharp picture quality.
- This type of display is considered the best for 3D.
- It is perfect for fast motion frames.
- DLP displays are more expensive than LCDs.
- Dark colors rending have always been an issue with these types of displays.
- You might notice some rainbow effects.
2. Screen Size
Screen size is the projected image size that is produced by your projector. You can either make it large or small as it is all up to you. However, most of the projector comes with a recommended screen size and throw distance so that you can get the best picture quality. Still, you can minimize and maximize its screen sizes as per your needs or requirements.
If you don’t want to use the recommended screen size, then you have to measure the distance between the projector and the surface you intend to project onto in order to maintain the picture quality.
Most of the people think that the brightness of a projector is everything. However, it is not. If your projector can produce brighter images, it doesn’t mean that the quality of that image would be the best. Nope. Brightness level needs to be changed as per your needs; otherwise, you will end up with a good headache. So, you should determine the brightness level according to the location.
So what projector would be the best according to the location? If you want an outdoor projector, then make sure your projector has 3000+ lumens. If it used in dark area, then a dimmer projector with 1,000 lumens would be the best for you. However, under $400 projector, you should go for more than 3000 lumens.
4. Contrast Ratio
The contrast ratio is the difference between light and dark of an image. It is always better to have a projector that has a wide contrast range so that you can adjust the image in order to achieve a preferred look. So make sure your projector has at least 15000:1 contrast ratio.
The higher the resolution, the higher the picture quality, simple. If your projector is capable of handling higher resolution, it would be great. Most of the projectors under $400 come with a native resolution 1280×800 pixels and supports from VGA 640 x 480 to 1920 x 1080p WUXGA. If you want a higher resolution projector such as 1920 x 1080p, then you have to spend an extra $100. For that, you can check the best projectors under 500 dollars.
6. Throw Distance
As you already know, if there is much distance between the projector and screen, you will end up with blurry images and bad picture quality. The throw distance lets you know which is the right distance can be in order to see a clear image. Most projectors offer throw distance from 3ft to 16ft. However, Under $400 projector, you can expect up to 18ft throw distance.
7. Lamp Life
The bulb life is going to be very important as the bulb of a projector is the most expensive part or component. So, it is clear that you should go for a projector with a longer bulb life. However, it all depends on the money that you spend on a projector as expensive projectors can come with a bulb life more than 50,000 hours. But, projectors under $400 can give you at least 15,000 hours of bulb life.
In 2021, you might notice that most of the projectors come with multiple connectivity options such as HDMI (standard connectivity), Bluetooth, VGA, and RCA connectors. So, make sure your projector is packed with these inputs. However, if you connect your projector wirelessly, then you might not get the best picture quality as we get via HDMI.
And when it comes to home theater, the RCA connectors become a very necessary feature. So choose a projector as per your needs.
The compatibility with your latest devices, whether it is your smartphone or laptops. Your projector should be compatible with all modern devices so that you don’t need a certain type of device that your projector allows you to connect.
So make sure that you don’t face any compatibility issues after buying a projector.
I’ve tried to cover everything—Full reviews with pros and cons, the buying guide, and the FAQ section, in this article. So now, as far as the best projector under 400 is concerned, you have all the information, including the top five reviews and my verdicts.