Own The Boardroom

PROJECTORS ARE THE NAME OF THE GAME

For many years, projecting your presentations onto a screen for an audience has been accompanied by the cumbersome task of lugging out the giant projector, plugging it in, letting it heat up, etc. Fortunately for travelling business professionals, those days have passed. There are many small, portable projectors now and that’s how we can make your life so much easier.

Based on their very name, it should go without saying that portable projectors are very small and lightweight. They can fit right into your briefcase and won’t slow you down. They are also very straightforward and easy to use and your setup time will be very minimal.
A portable projector will be ready for you to present at any time. You can simply pull it out of your bag and go! There is nothing to plug in as they have rechargeable batteries. Another huge time saver is that you can present directly from the projector itself, with your USB. There is no need to connect to a laptop or computer. You don’t need to copy or transfer any files or open anything up.

These projectors are perfect for those that travel for work or make presentations to clients and customers at various locations and offices. In the past, you would have had to either count on them to have one of the big, wired projectors or found a way to transport yours. Taking these from one room to another was enough of a hassle, but getting them outside and into a vehicle to go somewhere else took a lot of time and effort. With a portable projector, all you must do is pop it in your bag or even your pocket, and it can travel with you with no problem.

KNOWING WHERE TO PLACE THE PROJECTOR

It’s important to consider the location of your projector, as this will affect its weight. If you want to place it high—where it doesn’t need to be moved—a lightweight projector could be considered. However, you may get away with heavier ones, as long as the ceiling holds. If you need to carry the projector around regularly, think about lightweight, smaller options to make your job much easier.

Take your time when considering the best projector for your needs. This is more than just looking at your budget. You need to consider the size, weight, brightness and resolution. These all affect the quality of the image you will see, and the ease of use.

Short Throw vs Long Throw Projectors
What is Throw?

The ‘Throw’ or ‘Throw Distance’ is the distance from screen to projector. Each projector model will have an advertised Throw Ratio that lets us calculate the throw distance for a required image size. For projectors that have zoom there will be 2 figures, one zoomed in and one zoomed out. To calculate this distance just multiply the throw ratio figure by your required image width.

For example, the advertised throw ratio on Epson’s EB-W42 projector is “1.3 – 1.56:1”, if we require an image 2 metres wide then the calculation is as follows;

1.3 x 2m = 2.6m

1.56 x 2m = 3.12m

So we now know that for a 2m wide picture we would need to place this projector between 2.6 and 3.12 metres back. Checking the throw distance of a projector is particularly important if you have a set installation point where your new projector must be placed.

In the event you have a particular distance in mind and wish to know the image width you’ll get, you simply need to divide the distance by the throw ratio figure. For example, if you want to place this same projector 3 metres back the calculation is as follows;

3m / 1.3 = 2.3m

3m / 1.56 = 1.92m

So at a 3m distance we now know you will be able to zoom the image width between 1.92 and 2.3metres.

Throw ratio is always based on image width, not diagonal or height.

What is a Short throw Projector?

Most projectors, like the Epson in the above example, need to be placed a few metres back for an average image size. Sometimes this longer distance is not possible, and we need a projector capable of projecting a large picture from a closer distance. A short throw projector is a projector with a lens that creates a large picture from a shorter distance. For example, With Optoma’s EH412ST Short Throw projector, it has an advertised throw ratio of 0.5:1, so for a 2m wide picture we would need to place the projector exactly 1 metre back (0.5 x 2m = 1m).

Note, this projector (like most short throw projectors), only has 1 throw ratio figure as there is no zoom so you need to be precise with positioning.

Are short throw projectors brighter?

All major projector brands use the ‘ANSI’ (American National Standards Institute) Lumens standard to measure brightness. The measurement is taken at the screen by the manufacturer prior to release. Using a short throw projector does not necessarily mean it will be brighter. If a very bright picture is required, and you have the ability to place the projector further back, you may be able to get a brighter long throw projector at a similar price.

Advantages of a Short Throw Projector:

Short throw projectors are particularly handy for business and education use as there is less distance where the presenter can block the projection while trying to present. It would also mean the projector does not need to be placed far back among the audience. The use of a short throw projector can also be advantageous if you need to install it on the ceiling in close proximity to avoid ceiling objects like fans, vents, or light fittings. Short Throw projectors are also popular in the home; if you have a small room but still want a large image a short throw projector may be for you.

Downsides of a short throw projector:

Most short throw projectors feature no zoom. When setting up or installing your projector you need to be careful to install the unit at the right distance…. Being off by a few centimetres can affect your image.

Focus uniformity is usually not quite as good on a short throw projector. This means you sometimes may notice the corner of an image not being as sharp as the middle or opposite corner. This is generally not noticeable while watching a film but can be seen when displaying text.

Short Throw projectors require a very flat surface to project on to, this is particularly true when using an Ultra Short Throw projector. Screens that roll or fold are not recommended as the image can appear wavy. Best to stick with a good quality fixed frame screen or projection whiteboard.

Generally, Short Throw projectors can cost a little more than standard/long throw projector.

Should I pick a Short Throw or Long Throw Projector?

If you are flexible with the installation distance, we recommend sticking with a standard/long throw projector. There are far more long throw projectors on the market so you have more choice and often can save some money.

Short throw projectors are a great option if you can’t install a projector further back, possibly to avoid a ceiling fan, light fitting, or air vent. They are perfect for small rooms and are becoming increasingly popular for flight and golf simulators.

Why does my 4K signal drop out?

1. The Cable

Sadly, the HDMI market has been flooded with low quality cables, all spouting magnificent claims of high speeds and bandwidth. You do not need to spend a fortune on a good quality HDMI cable but do not go cheap. The ‘bargain bin’ cables at your local hardware, office supply store, or online marketplace should be avoided. Try to use a high quality ‘High Speed with Ethernet’ grade cable purchased from a reputable Audio Visual dealer.

Keep the cable length as short as possible. 4K Signals hate long distances. Typical High Speed HDMI cables work well with 4K up to 5m, beyond that the risk of drop out increases substantially. For long distances we recommend using an ACTIVE HDMI cable, these give the signal a boost so are capable of sending 4K signals at 60hz up to 20metres.

HDMI signal interference can also cause signal loss. This occurs when a HDMI cable has been positioned close to power cables, power points, or near large speakers. Try to keep a minimum 10cm gap between your HDMI cables and power cables.

cheap hdmi cable

2. Receivers, Amplifiers, & Adapters

Every time a cable connects to something you can expect a slight drop in signal strength. This is the case when you plug into a receiver, or an adapter, or a wall plate. Whilst HDMI wall plates they look great on the wall that extra connection can weaken the signal further. If you would like a neat cover on the wall, we suggest using a BullNose plate that the entire cable runs through without requiring an adapter or plug. Receivers/Amplifiers are a common feature in a typical home theatre and are required for surround sound set ups. Many receivers do not output overly strong HDMI signals so when using a Receiver, we recommend pairing with an Active HDMI cable and to keep the cable length as short as possible. When connecting your players to the receiver use as short of a cable as possible.

3. The Player

Similar to how some receivers output weak signals some players can too. Recently we have seen an increase in clients encountering drop out with the latest Foxtel box and AppleTV when outputting 4K signals. Adjusting the resolution down to 1080p often solves the issue, alternatively if you would like to stick with 4K try setting the hz rate to 50hz instead of 60hz.

4. The Projector

It is rare but the projector can also be the cause of signal drop out if an issue exists with one of the ports or the inbuilt firmware. Before commencing any troubleshooting, it is recommended to reset the projector to factory default settings.

How do I fix 4K signal drop out?

Start Short. If you are encountering drop out the first step would be to test using a short HDMI cable (2m or less). After resetting your projector to factory default settings, plug your player directly into the projector, bypassing any receivers or adapters you may have been using. If a short cable solves the problem, it likely means the projector is fine and the weak signal is being caused by the long cable, the receiver, or an adapter.

If drop out still occurs with a short cable it is then recommended to try a different player (ie maybe a computer or another device around the house) and different cable to try and identify if there is any issue with the player. Make sure your player is outputting a compatible resolution that the projector can read too. Following this it may be worthwhile arranging for your projectors firmware to be updated or serviced.

If a short cable is working well, it is time to work backwards and slowly start testing other components. For example, you may next try a longer cable with your player directly, then try the same long cable connected through your amplifier. It is also suggested to try different ports, one port on a receiver could be stronger than another. Make sure your long cable is installed away from PowerPoints and power cables to avoid interference. If no luck with your longer cable it may be time to upgrade to a higher quality version such as an ACTIVE HDMI Cable and/or attempt to reduce your cable length.

Support from our staff is available to all Just Projectors clients, if you continue to encounter signal drop out, please send us an email so we may assist.

HERE ARE OUR BEST PROJECTORS FOR HIRE

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