Auditoriums come in all shapes and sizes. From campus classrooms, to multi-tiered houses of worship to gymnasiums that double as community center concert venues, people flock to presentations that must transcend the size of the room and the number of people in the audience. If there’s a supplemental media element incorporated into the event, there’s likely a powerful projector somewhere in the confines of that venue.
Several features are similar among auditorium-worthy projectors, but here are a few to consider as part of the evaluation.
Bursts of Color
Like any good artist, understanding how to manipulate color to evoke an emotional and psychological reaction is key to leaving a lasting impression. The same can be said for a projector. Auditoriums offer unique challenges in that the space is often vast, and certain elements are not always controllable, like lights from windows, doors opening and closing and camera flashes. Having strong lumen levels, coupled with high contrast ratio and resolution functions on the projector will allow the media to stand out, despite the conditions. If the venue offers unpredictable surroundings, consider a projector with ANSI Lumens ratings of 3,500 or higher, with contrast ratios of 3,000:1.
If the projector target changes from event to event, consider a projector that features interchangeable lens. If there is a screen or backdrop that changes colors, or requires texture to make the image standout more, certain lenses offer greater focal range and depth of field. While certain projectors only have a fixed lens, if swapping lens and changing the dynamics of the presentation are crucial to the venue, be prepared to pay more for the extra “eyes.”
Being able to handle the demands of a long multi-media presentation is just the beginning. The lamps inside projectors need to be able to deliver consistency week in and week out. Consider a unit that features lower wattage lamps which also offer long life. Expect a power draw of around 300W per lamp, and lifespan of 2,500 hours, depending on the projector’s operation mode.
Many projectors can take in feeds from multiple sources, like a laptop, a tablet, a broadcast feed and even an MP3 player, but they switch easily among them? If presenters using the projector like to share information from a variety of inputs, consider a projector that provides many connections. Each projector varies, so study the manufacturer specs closely.