One of the questions we are asked more and more at Personal Projector these days is should you buy a 4k TV or a 4k projector?
The lines are now blurring between the 4k TV and the 4k projectors with 4k projector prices now rivalling 4k TVs. Projector brightness levels are also improving and most importantly 4k content is also becoming more easily available.
What are the main differences between 4K TV versus 4k Projectors: Price, Screen Size, Brightness
According to a recent article by T3 4th August 2017, "this year, some 230 million televisions will be sold worldwide (pub quizzers take note, of which 50 million will be 50-inch plus UHD models. On a high-street near you, the fastest-growing 4K screen size is now roughly 43 inches. As we strive for larger, cinema style screens the option to upgrade to a 4K projector has never looked better."
Both the Acer H7850 and the Optoma UHDX550 4k projectors can project a 4K screen of up to 120-inches and beyond instead of 43", with built in sound systems to deliver an accessible cinema experience in your living room. Although we would still recommend they are connected up to an external home cinema audio system if you want the best 4k audio visual experience.
Some 4k projectors are also now cheaper than the 4k TV equivalents at only £1899 inc vat which is half the price they were 12 months ago.
Projector brightness has now also improved to around 3000 lumens on a 4k projector too meaning its perfect for viewing in normal light conditions without the curtains being drawn so you get the brightness and the cinema sized images in one package.
How easy is it access 4K TV/Cinema Content ?
There’s actually a huge difference between the various 4k paid TV content packages when it comes to the depth of their UHD catalogue. Here is a summary below of 4k content from the main providers in the UK via Sky, BT, Virgin, Amazon and Netflix.
In addition you can also obtain free UHD 4k content via YouTube.
How to find 4K content at a glance:
|4K Content||SKY Q||BT YouView + UHD||Virgin V6||Amazon Fire Box||Netflix|
|Sports||Sky Sports F1, Test Cricket, Premier League Football||Champions + Europa League Football, Boxing, Rugby||Stream through apps||Stream through apps||N/A|
|Movies||Sky Cinema||In Development||Stream through apps||Stream through apps||Stream through app|
|TV and Box Sets||Selected Box Sets||On Demand||Stream through apps||Stream through apps||Stream through app|
T3 tech magazine believe, "with 4k Cinema and 4k box sets on offer you can bingewatch shows in UHD, including The Blacklist, Fortitude and Riviera. If you’re watching live sports, 4K viewers will receive a prompt to switch to a UHD broadcast if it’s available. Sky offers the entire Formula 1 season in 4K plus Test Cricket and Premier League Football.
Currently, the headline attraction from BT is 4K football (Premier League, UEFA Champions League, and EUFA Europa League), but it also screens regular UHD boxing and Aviva Premiership Rugby in 4K (with Dolby Atmos audio, which makes a not inconsiderable bonus).
The latest set top box from cable giant Virgin TV, the ultra-compact V6, is 4K capable, too. Unfortunately, unlike Sky, Virgin TV currently does not offer any UHD content beyond Netflix and YouTube in 4K.
If you’re hoping to stream 4K Netflix or Amazon Video content from a separate mediaplayer, the best value is Amazon’s Fire TV box, priced at £80. This hooks up via HDMI and supports 2160p streams. Only the bigger Amazon Fire box offers 4K, the little Amazon Fire stick is HD only.
It’s also important to note that HDR from Netflix and Amazon is only available from apps integrated within a 4K HDR TV itself. It’s not (yet) available from outboard devices, like media players and Blu-ray decks."
Two Popular 4k Projectors: Acer H7850 and Optoma UHD550X
The main advantage of course in viewing 4k content on a 4k projector as opposed to a 4k TV is the supersized ultra lifelike, immersive images blown up to a huge cinema size as it was intended to be and these 2 models below do a great job at very reasonable prices.
The Acer H7850 4k projector delivers 4K resolutions with AcuMotion Frame Rate Enhancement to deliver sharper images during shaky or unstable moments in whatever you’re watching. Along this technology the brightness of 3000 lumens and built in speakers combine to provide a full cinema experience all in one box. This home cinema is available for £2,278.80 (Inc Vat).
The Optoma UHD550X 4k projector goes one stage further than the Acer and provides a uniqe feature of vertical lens shift allowing you to bring the projector further or closer from the wall electronically ie without the need to move it which can be an advantage if you are restricted on where you need to place the projector.
The various adjustments on offer means this projector is also incredibly accessible, easy to install and connect. It even has a built-in gaming-mode, optimising your projector for lightning response times, maximum contrast and vivid colours to capture every detail. This versatile projector is available at £1899.99 which is less than some 4K TVs.
Blu-ray is still best
Unlike 4K TV, UHD Blu-ray discs stream 2160p at a constant high-bit rate with wide colour range delivered in a next generation BT.2020 container. This means a movie on disc could potentially offer the same DCI colour depth as you’ll see in a digital cinema. While 4K TV content is still colour graded to the old school REC.709 standard, most UHD discs take full advantage of the wider colour volume available. This translates to far greater colour intensity and depth.
Overall, there is more and more 4k content out there than ever before and this christmas is sure to be a very popular one for both 4k projectors and 4k subscriber channels like Sky, BT, Virgin, Amazon and Netflix.
Source: T3 4th August 2017