Best short throw 4K projectors – 2021 buyer’s guide

4K projectors have redefined media consumption, classroom demonstrations, and boardroom presentations.

Until recently, projectors needed a lot of room to display images properly. However, the introduction of short throw projectors allowed the projection of images from just a few feet away.

Like other tech markets, there are tens of short-throw projector brands. While most of them boast features such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, some often experience a range of technical issues.

So, how do you determine the best short throw 4K projectors?

Having spent days of research on this topic, I can help you select a 4K projector that is durable and displays crisp images. With these findings, you wouldn’t have to spend your precious time searching through substandard products anymore.

Just before we jump into the list of the best short throw projectors for 4K viewing, here are a couple of things you should always look for when choosing a projector.

Best short throw 4K projectors in 2021 – Top 4 picks!

If you want to buy a short throw project, the following are the best options.

ProjectorBrightness
(Lumens)
Lamp Life
(hrs)
Max screen
Size (in)
Price
Optoma GT1080HDR380015000120
BenQ HT3550200010000100
Optoma EH412ST400015000120
ViewSonic X10-4KE240030000120

1. Optoma GT1080HDR Short Throw Gaming Projector


Optoma GT1080HDR is a cheap short throw projector for gaming and general media consumption. The projector can connect with HDMI-supported devices such as Apple TV, Google Chromecast, and Fire Stick.

Also, with dual HDMI — with 3D support — this is an ideal device for connecting with gaming consoles.

Some of its top features include:

  • 120Hz refresh rate
  • HDR10 technology that supports 4K input
  • Up to 15,000 hours of lamp life
  • 10-watt integrated speaker
  • Flexible connectivity —for both HDMI devices and gaming consoles
  • To achieve a full-screen display, the distance between the screen and display must be 6”
  • Short throw lens with an incredible 120″ Image projection
SEE ALSO:  Best Ultra Short Throw projector – 2021 buyer's guide

Pros

  • The projector is easy to set
  • The picture and video quality are unmatched
  • Better color balancing
  • It has an eco-mode
  • The higher refresh rate makes it ideal for gaming

Cons

  • The projector does not have a noise reduction feature, and the noise can be distracting

If you are looking for the best 4K short throw projector for gaming and general media consumption, Optoma GT1080HDR is a perfect option for you.

2. BenQ HT3550 4K Home Theater Projector with HDR10 and HLG

BenQ

If you want the brightest short throw projector to stream Prime Video and Netflix, BenQ HT3550 is what you need. The cinematic color technology gives you a larger visible spectrum and therefore recreating a cinema in your living room.

On the other hand, the HDR tone mapping helps in ensuring that the videos have the right color and contrast.

Other features include:

  • It supports HDMI, USB (type A and B mini)
  • 3D compatibility
  • The projector has HDR tone mapping
  • Active iris controls which balance colors and brightness for better picture quality
  • It has a 3X big zoom lens
  • To achieve the maximum screen, you must place the projector 8.2” away

Pros

  • Unmatched contrast and therefore more details in darker scenes
  • Shaper images and better clarity on motion
  • Easy to set up
  • Handles 3D well
  • Better menu responsiveness

Cons

  • The projector has an input lag

The BenQ HT3550 standout out from the rest short throw projectors because of its focus on media consumption.

3. Optoma EH412ST Short Throw 1080P HDR Professional Projector


Optoma EH412ST is the best short throw projector for professionals and classroom use. The projector allows you to connect your phone or iPad and share the content on a big screen.

The projector also has an improved speaker, and you do not need an external sound amplifier.

Optoma EH412ST has the following features

  • It is compatible with both 4K UHD and 1080p HDR inputs
  • To achieve a full-screen display, the distance between the screen and display must be 4.5”
  • It has a 10W integrated speaker
  • 10,000 hours’ lamp life with eco-friendly features
  • It has dynamic black technology, which shows details of black scenes and brighter scenes clear and crispy
  • MHL connectivity makes it possible to connect phones and tablets
SEE ALSO:  Best Ultra Short Throw projector – 2021 buyer's guide

Pros

  • It has sharper and detailed images
  • Accurate color profile
  • A better sounding speaker (10 Watts)
  • Can handle HD and 3D content

Cons

  • The fan can be quite noisy

If you are looking for the best short throw 4K projector for professional or classroom use, this is a perfect buy.

4. ViewSonic X10-4KE True 4K UHD Short Throw


The ViewSonic X10-4KE combines two functionalities — portability and smart streaming. This design approach means that this projector is primarily for media consumption. The Smart TV interface, for example, is not only innovative but also an essential stride in bridging the gap between mobile phones and the world of Smart TV.

Other features include:

  • A refresh rate of 120Hz
  • Inclusion of frame interpolation technology, which eliminate image blurriness in movies
  • To control the projector, you can either use Amazon’s Alexa or Google Assistant
  • It integrates Harman Kardon speakers for premium sound
  • 30,000 hours lamp life

Pros

  • Unmatched color accuracy
  • Better sound integration
  • Longer lamp life
  • Portability
  • Smart TV enabled

Cons

  • The contrast of the images is unfortunately not consistent

If you are looking for a portable projector to integrate into your smart home, this is a great buy.

Things to consider when choosing short throw 4K projectors

Before you buy a short throw 4K projector, you should consider several factors. They include:

Connectivity

Most projectors rely on VGA and HDMI ports for connectivity. While the two connectivity options are reliable, you should invest in a short throw projector 4K with multiple connection ports.

The DVI, AV, micro USB, and USB are popular with newer projectors. If you want to go wireless, some models support Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

Lamp life

The longer the lamp life, the better the projector. Also, you should consider projectors that have Eco-Mode settings since it increases lamp life.

SEE ALSO:  Best Ultra Short Throw projector – 2021 buyer's guide

Speakers

While you should always shop for projectors that allow you to connect to external speakers, consider a projector that has integrated speakers.

This is particularly great if you don’t wish to spend on a home theatre system immediately. An ideal integrated speaker should be at least 5 watts.

Ease of use

The short throw LED projector should be easy to set up, and more importantly, you should be able to connect it to a source device easily.

It is, however, advisable to read the manual before setting up a new projector.

Are short throw projectors better than long throw?

Well, this depends on three factors -budget, watching preference, and space constraint. Each type of projector has a target market.

For example, the long throw projectors are favorites in the world corporates, while short throw projectors are more prevalent in the consumer markets.

However, the short throw projectors are better in the following ways.

  • They are easy to set up. Some models also have wireless connectivity features such as Bluetooth, which make them easier to use.
  • The outside and inside lighting do not affect your watching experience, thanks to high-quality lenses. However, this feature does not negate the importance of a well-lit room and blocking light from outside.
  • The images and videos from short-throw projectors are of high quality. While there are 4K long throw projectors, the images and videos from 4K short throw laser projectors are unmatched. Also, the colors in a short-distance projector are more accurate than in long throw projectors.

Conversely, the average price of a close-range projector is higher than that of a long-throw projector. The wireless connectivity features and high-quality lenses are, however, vital.

Conclusion

The best 4K short throw projectors highlighted above not only have bleeding-edge specs but are also durable.

For example, the average lamp life — for all the four projectors — is 10,000 hours. Assuming you use the short throw projector for 3 hours a day, you can use a projector for ten years.

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