Best full HD projectors under R5,000

South Africans looking to spruce up their home cinema experience can choose from several projectors available under R5,000.

When shopping for a cheap projector, it is crucial to consider its native resolution, brightness, and contrast ratio.

There are three types of projectors — LED, incandescent, and laser. The latter two types are much more expensive than LED projectors.

LED projectors are the cheapest type and offer the worst brightness and contrast ratios.

We browsed Takealot and Makro to find five of the best native 1080p LED projectors.

The problem with browsing for cheap projectors on online shopping platforms is that sellers often list deceptive specifications.

While a seller could describe a projector as 1080p or full HD, confirming that this refers to the native resolution is crucial.

In many cases, the 1080p descriptor does not refer to the projector’s native resolution but that it can display a 1080p video source.

Manufacturers can measure a projector’s brightness in three ways: ANSI lumens, LED Lumens, and light source lumens.

According to BenQ, ANSI lumens is the gold standard of brightness measurement because it is certified by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

ANSI lumens are measured by averaging the brightness levels of nine distinct regions of a projection screen.

On the other hand, light source lumens are calculated by measuring the light source’s brightness instead of the projection brightness.

Some sellers list a projector’s light source lumen rating instead of the ANSI score, which could make them seem much brighter than devices that only list ANSI lumens.

BenQ’s formula for converting light source lumens to ANSI lumens is as follows: Light source lumen value x 0.04 to 0.06.

To accurately represent the ANSI lumens of the projectors in this list, we multiplied the lumen value by 0.04.

A projector’s picture quality also depends on the contrast ratio — higher ratios produce deeper black levels.

Other essential factors to consider regarding projectors are the room size and the amount of ambient light present.

Since all the projectors listed are LED-based, it is highly recommended that you have some way to reduce the amount of light in the room as much as possible.

The consensus is that LED projectors are not a suitable replacement for your TV because the latter is brighter and better suited to daytime viewing.

MyBroadband recently tested a native 1080p projector from Amazon and found it was more than adequate for the average viewer in a darkened room.

Below are five of the best native 1080p projectors available on South African online tech retailers.

T10 1080P full HD Android home projector (Takealot)

T10 1080P Full HD Android Home Projector (Takealot)
Native resolution 1,920×1,080
Listed brightness 5,000 lumens / 200 ANSI lumens
Listed contrast ratio 2,000:1

Q9 Android projector (Takealot)

Q9 Android projector (Takealot)
Native resolution 1,920×1,080
Listed brightness 5,500 lumens / 220 ANSI lumens
Listed contrast ratio 4,500:1

T10 White projector (Takealot)

T10 White Projector (Takealot)
Native resolution 1,920×1,080
Listed brightness 3,600 Lumens / 144 ANSI lumens
Listed contrast ratio 5,000:1

Ultra Link compact smart projector (Makro)

Ultra Link compact smart projector (Makro)
Native resolution 1,920×1,080
Listed brightness 3,800 lumens / 152 ANSI lumens
Listed contrast ratio 4,000:1

We Love Gadgets M20 projector (Takealot)

We Love Gadgets M20 projector (Takealot)
Native resolution 1,920×1,080
Listed brightness 5,500 lumens / 220 ANSI Lumens
Listed contrast ratio 1,000:1

Now read: I bought a 1080p projector for R1,300 — and was blown away

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Best full HD projectors under R5,000