How to Ceiling Mount a Projector


Installing a projector on the ceiling can be tricky business if you don't have all the facts. Sometimes it is as simple as attaching the mounting plate to the extension pole and attaching the pole to the support structure. Other times, it involves more creativity. We will walk through the basics of ceiling mounting: ceiling type, mount type, projector model, throw distance and security features. Addressing these different issues will help you determine how best to approach your ceiling-mounting situation.

To start, let's consider the following list of questions that need to be answered to get the correct ceiling mount kit for your application.

Ceiling Type

Cathedral - high rise ceilings
Structural - a non cathedral ceiling that is eight feet high. Usually covered.
Suspended - ceiling tile system in a business type setting

Mount Type

Cathedral Ceiling Adapter
Round Ceiling Adapter
Suspended Ceiling Kit

Do you want to flush mount or suspend the projector from the ceiling? Flush mounting the projector allows for approximately four to six inches between ceiling and projector. Flush mounting a projector is not applicable in cathedral mounting but can be used for both structural and suspended applications.

Projector Model

You'll need to know the exact projector model that you will be installing. Projector mounting plates are made to fit a certain model projector's mounting holes exactly, and this varies from one model to another. Most projectors are mounted upside down on the ceiling and have a menu selection to invert the image properly.

Projector manufacturers produce "throw charts" that list
image size based on distance from the screen.

Throw Distance

You'll need to know how far back you have to install the projector in order to fill the designated screen. As in mounting plates, each projector model may throw a different image size. Projector manufacturers produce "throw charts" that list image size based on distance from the screen. You will have to consult this chart before deciding where to install the projector in the room.

Security Features

Protecting the projector from theft is a consideration that should be given some thought. If the projector is going to be in a high visibility area, then the projector should have some sort of security feature attached. Security features come in many different types, I will address two of them. The first option is to order a projector mount that has a clamp device. The clamp device shrouds the projector on both sides to keep it from being removed from the mount. It is secured by a set of security screws that use a special Allen wrench to remove the screws. The second option is a security cable. The security cable attaches to the side of the projector via lock. The cable is then secured to the ceiling mount. These security features prevent theft of projectors by preventing people from taking the projectors down from the mounts and walking off with them.


Ventilation intakes and outtakes can affect the performance of the projectors cooling system. Allow a three-foot radius for ventilation of your projector as recommended by most manufacturers.

Now you are ready to place the projector. In both the cathedral and structural ceiling applications you will place the projector on the existing structures. The suspended ceiling kit applications will have the projector attached directly to the ceiling tile that is included in the kit. In any of these applications you may use an extension pole to drop the projector to the height of the screen or you may flush mount both the structural and suspended ceiling applications. All mounts come with pitch, roll or yaw or all of them. Using these features will allow you to adjust the projector picture on the screen from the mount. This is not to say that you will not have to use the projector's features to correct the image. The mounting features are designed to get the picture square to the screen if the projector has been mounted correctly. Keep in mind that each installation is different, but if you follow these basic guidelines you should experience fewer headaches when installing a projector on the ceiling.

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