The idea of using an ultra-short-throw projector as a replacement for a regular TV has been around for a few years, but there's no denying the explosion of recent interest as numerous projector manufacturers have jumped into the fray. You can blame it on a number of factors including the dropping cost of bright lasers that eliminate the usual lamp replacements associated with projectors, the development of high-tech screens that let you effectively watch projections with the lights on, and the still very-high costs associated with a panel TV at the 100- to 120-inch image size these projectors play at. Whatever the reason, what was once a curiosity has become a bonafide product category, with quite a few models to choose from at different price and performance levels.

The projectors listed below (in alphabetical order) all use a solid-state light source—typically laser—that eliminates costly lamp replacements and provides essentially stable brightness for at least 20,000 hours of use. That's more than nine years of watching six hours of TV every single day. Some include on-board streaming platforms for receiving services like Netflix and Amazon, a built-in off-air TV tuner, or an integrated soundbar. Likewise, some are shipped as a complete solution with an ambient-light-rejection screen designed for use with UST projectors. In our guide below, we've called out these and other features, and included a link to our review where applicable and to each product's page in our ProjectorCentral database. From there, you can see more specifications, download a product sheet and user manual for more information, or visit our Projector Throw Calculator for that model. You can also directly compare prices and specs on up to six different models by hitting the blue "+ Add to Compare List" button at the top of every spec page. Clicking on the price for any projector in the guide will provide a link to our affiliated online resellers. As always, follow the links through to the retailer to check for the latest discounts.—Rob Sabin, editor-in-chief.


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AWOL Vision LTV-3500/LTV-3000/LTV-2500

  • Rated Brightness LTV-3500 3,500 Lumens
  • Rated Brightness LTV-3000 2,400 Lumens
  • Rated Brightness LTV-2500 2,000 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price LTV-3500 $4,998
  • Price LTV-3000 $3,999
  • Price LTV-2500 $2,499

The AWOL Vision LTV-3500 is an RGB triple laser 4K UHD projector that distinguishes itself as being one of the brightest ultra-short throws on the market, and it measured reasonably close to its 3,500 ANSI lumen claim in our review, where the LTV-3500 earned our Highly Recommended award. This high-performance UST is packed with features and offers good picture quality along with its bright image. AWOL's mid-tier LTV-3000 and lower tier LTV-2500, offer 2,400 and 2,000 lumens respectively and is essentially the same as the LTV-3500 in most aspects. The latter models would be better suited to darker rooms with good lighting control, whereas the LTV-3500 can withstand higher ambient light scenarios—especially when paired with an ALR screen.

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The AWOL Vision LTV-3500 boasts vivid colors and wide gamut that, similar to other RGB laser projectors, exceeds full Rec.2020. This is well in excess to the DCI-P3 color gamut used for most HDR content today. The projector comes with the Fire TV Stick 4K Max streaming dongle, providing a robust multimedia experience, and it has support for 4K, HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Atmos and eARC (which gives the ability to pass a Dolby Atmos signal to an outboard audio system). Both models are spec'd for 80- to 150-inch screens, with most other models topping out at 120 inches. Keep in mind, though, that the preferred ALR screens for USTs aren't readily available above 120 inches, and the larger you go, the darker the image gets.

Our reviewer found the menus a bit awkward to navigate, and as with some other RGB laser models there is visible laser speckle, though the LTV-3500 was neither the best nor worst in this regard.


BenQ V5000i lifestyle

BenQ V5000i

  • Rated Brightness 2,500 Lumens
  • Screen Included No (ALR option available)
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price $3,499

BenQ, though a well-known projector manufacturer, didn't enter the ultra-short throw living room projector arena until 2021 with the V7050i. This follow-up V5000i is a 4K UHD DLP projector with a triple laser light engine. The projector is rated for 95% of the BT.2020 color space and 98% of the DCI-P3 color space, slightly short of the 100% BT.2020 or higher rating boasted by most RGB projectors, though the difference is inconsequential.

When purchased on BenQ's website, this 2,500 lumen projector has the option to bundle a 1.4 gain, 100-inch fresnel ALR UST screen (model SNS21) and to add home installation. The screen is normally $800 and the home installation $500. But at the time of this update in mid-January 2024, you can add the screen for just $400 and get home installation for free.

The V5000i has a robust color management system for calibibration, as well as color temperature tuning and 11-point white balance adjustment. The projector has both HDR10 and HDR10+ in addition to HLG support. It also has Filmmaker Mode, which delivers cinematic experience that reflects the filmmakers' intent. Dynamic Black contrast preserves dark details, while Local Contrast Enhancer adjusts gamma in each of 1000+ zones, adding more depth and further enhancing the image.

BenQ V5000i front top

The Android TV 10 operating system includes streaming apps like Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, YouTube, with the bonus of having hotkey access. More apps and access to 700,000 films and TV shows are available through the Google Play store. As with other Android projectors, Google Assistant is on board for voice search, and the projector has Chromecast built-in for casting to it.

The V5000i has Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM), which reduces input lag to make the projector suitable for gaming when the projector detects a game is being played. As usual, the input lag time varies based on resolution and frame rate, with 4K/60Hz or1080p/60Hz rated at 17.9 milliseconds, 1080p/120Hz at 21.2 ms, and 1080p/240Hz at an impressive 8.7 ms. This is suitable for serious gaming.

This BenQ has powered focus, Auto Screen Fit to automatically adjust to and match the size of the screen, and Auto Keystone. A manual 8-point geometric correction facility is also available. It has three HDMI ports so multiple sources can be connected simultaneously. The dual 5-watt speakers feature a woofer and midrange-tweeter that support Dolby Audio and Dolby Atmos, and the projector can send digital audio to an outboard system via eARC. It also has an optical audio out.


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BenQ V7050i

  • Rated Brightness 2,500 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Single-Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $3,499

BenQ took its time joining the UST living room projector party, but eventually launched with this 4K model that takes square aim at the heart of the market with its $3,499 price tag. It's a great performer, too, earning a coveted Editor's Choice award in our review and coming in first in overall image quality among the Single Laser projectors in our 14-model 2022 Laser TV Showdown. As with others in this price range, a single blue laser combines with a phosphor wheel and color wheel to make the magic happen, but the V7050i boasts wider color gamut, specifically the ability to reach nearly 100% of the DCI-P3 color space used for HDR content (98%, to be exact). At 2,500 lumens, it's rated a bit lower than some competitors, though we found in testing that it makes up for it by delivering good image quality in its brightest mode. Filmmaker Mode is also a plus. And Full 1080p 3D is supported.

The V7050i is spec'd for image sizes from 70 to 123 inches diagonal, though you'll need to add your own UST ALR screen to get the most from your purchase. What it does come with is a modest but respectable built-in audio system with a pair of two-way 5-watt speakers tuned by treVolo (which unfortunately scored rather poorly in the 2022 Laser TV Showdown audio tests), and a streaming platform via BenQ's QS01 Android TV streaming stick whose operation integrates with the remote. This is a much preferred alternative to the Android-based Aptoid platform built into some other projectors and includes well-performing apps for several major services including Amazon, Disney +, and others, though like a few other projectors it lacks authorization for for Netflix.

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The V7050i's distinctive sliding motorized cover that protects the lens when not in use isn't necessary for a UST, but it's sure to be crowd pleaser and adds to the projector's distinctive styling. The 0.23:1 throw ratio is about average for the product class, and results in placing the projector about 9 inches from the wall for a 100-inch image.



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Epson EpiqVision Ultra LS800

  • Rated Brightness 3,500 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light SourceSingle-Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $3,499

The Epson EpiqVision Ultra LS800 continues Epson's reign as having the brightest UST on the market, with a 4,000 ISO21118 lumen rating. It's an update to the earlier LS500, offering that model's 4K PRO-UHD detail enhancement technology, which doubles the pixel-count on the projector's native 1080p chip and provides detail processing to mimic the look of a full UHD-resolution projector from normal viewing distances. At the same time, it trades in the LS500's awkward periscope lens for a sleek form factor and pulls in the title for the industry's shortest throw UST lens (0.16:1), which means it offers the closest placement to the screen wall of any projector for a given screen size. In this case, that's anything from 80 up to 150 inches diagonal, though if you keep the image to 120 inches or less you'll likely be able to fit the projector on a standard-depth credenza or TV stand without having to pull the furniture out from the wall. Epson recommends pairing it with an ambient light rejecting screen and offers its 100- and 120-inch SilverFlex Ultra screens as an accessory. The projector is available in either black or white to match your décor.

Epson LS800

As usual, Epson uses a 3-chip 3LCD architecture that eliminates any need for a color wheel and provides immunity to rainbow artifacts, while also offering 100% color brightness, something single-chip DLP projector's can't match. However, the projector's single laser+phosphor design is only rated for Rec.709 color gamut, so it can't take advantage of the extended color gamut found in HDR movies and shows.

On the smart end of things, the LS800 does have an integrated Android TV streaming platform. Sadly, it is missing Netflix, but does have HBO, Disney+, Hulu, ESPN, YouTube, and others. Google Assistant is available from a mic on the remote and Chromecast built-in is available from streaming from a phone. You can also stream live TV via YouTube TV. Unlike the earlier LS500, there's no 3D capabilities on this one. Our review can be viewed here.


EpiqVision Ultra LS650

Epson EpiqVision Ultra LS650

  • Rated Brightness 3,600 Lumens
  • Screen Included No (ALR option available)
  • Light Source Single-Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $2,424

The Epson EpiqVision Ultra LS650 is one of the brighter ultra-short throw projectors on the market at 3,600 lumens. As a 3-chip 3LCD projector, it has equal white brightness and color brightness for consistently vivid colors, an advantage over most single-chip DLP projectors that sacrifice some color brightness. It also eliminates the need for a color wheel, so there are no rainbow artifacts that also can affect single-chip DLP projectors. Paired with an ultra-short throw ALR screen, this Epson could easily be used in higher ambient light scenarios, such as a living room or family room. Like the LS800, it is available in either a white or black chassis to match best with your decor.

The single laser+phosphor light engine has a lifespan of up to 20,000 hours at full power consumption, and like most other single-laser projectors, it show no real evidence of laser speckle that can afflict triple laser RGB projectors. But unlike most of the DLP models, the LS650 does not offer full 4K resolution and instead uses Epson's 4K PRO-UHD detail enhancing technology. With this approach, pixel shifting tech doubles the on-screen pixel count to twice that of 1080p, which is one-half of the full 8 million pixel count for 4K. However, this is combined with sophisticated detail processing to successfully give the appearance of full 4K UHD resolution image at normal viewing distances.

The LS650 has an immersive 2.1-channel sound system with stereo speakers (two 5-watt) and a subwoofer (10-watt) from Yamaha which features Yamaha DSP. One of its HDMI ports supports eARC for feeding bitstreams up Dolby Atmos quality to a compatible AV receiver or soundbar.

EpiqVision Ultra LS650

This low latency projector is good for all but the most competitive gaming, with its input lag measuring at 24 ms. The LS650 has Android TV OS 11. Unfortunately, there is no dedicated Netflix app, so an external media player will be required for that platform. It does have several popular streaming services, such as Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, and YouTube, and the Google Play store allows for download of other apps and streaming services. It does not have 3D compatibility.

Our reviewer noted that with its single-laser engine, the Epson LS650 has a restricted color gamut that tops out around Rec.709, and it lacks serious calibration controls that professionals might use for tuning the color. Along with its high brightness, makes this projector more for everyday TV watchers over serious cinema enthusiasts.

EpiqVision Ultra LS300 NPA slider

Epson EpiqVision Ultra LS300

  • Rated Brightness 3,600 Lumens
  • Screen Included No (ALR option available)
  • Light Source Single-Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $1,533

Like the Epson LS800 and LS650, the EpiqVision LS300 Streaming Laser Projector is based on a trio of native 1080p LCD imagers. However, Epson's 4K PRO-UHD pixel-shifting technology to enhance image detail is not present here as it is with those other products, so we're left with a 1080p-resolution projector that accepts 4K UHD HDR signals and applies HDR10 or HLG processing to take advantage of the wider dynamic range inherent in that content. The resulting cost savings from the lower resolution and a modest reduction in brightness is passed on to the consumer and evident in the pricing.

EpiqVision Ultra LS300 Black NPA

The LS300 boasts a Yamaha-engineered 2.1-channel integrated sound system featuring processing to create a more spacious image. Onboard Bluetooth allows it to be used for music from your portable devices. And the LS300's Android TV streaming platform, supported by the Google Play store, Google Assistant voice control, and Chromecast built-in, is integrated fully into the projector and mic-enabled remote instead of being executed via an HDMI dongle and extra remote. The LS300 further touts automatic "scene-based color correction," though its color gamut taps out at Rec.709 as it does with the LS500.

The LS300 is a relatively compact and lightweight projector, measuring 18.4 x 15.7 x 5.9 inches and weighing in at 15.9 pounds. Like most of the projectors in our listing, it will throw an image up to 120 inches diagonal, but it goes as small as 61 inches, and thanks to the smaller throw ratio of its lens, casts a 100-inch image from only 10.5 inches away from the rear of the projector, or 15.2 inches for a 120-inch image. Like the LS800 and LS650, it is available in either black or white styling.


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Formovie Theater

  • Rated Brightness 2,800 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price $2,799

The Formovie Theater beckons from a consumer-facing division of Appotronics, a Chinese company known for making the ALPD-branded laser light engines used in many UST laser TV projectors. Despite being brand new and unknown to judges at the ProjectorCentral/ProjectorScreen.com 2022 Laser TV Showdown, it took first place for overall image quality in the Triple Laser grouping. It also snatched the top spot last fall at the 2023 Laser TV Showdown and had the best audio quality both years, thanks to a bespoke sound system by Bowers & Wilkens—B&W's signature clean and spacious sound quality was readily evident and beat the competition hands down for both movies and music. The Formovie Theater also earned ProjectorCentral's top Editor's Choice award; our review can be found here..

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With a list price of $3,499 and typical street price of $2,999, this projector distinguishes itself among the triple RGB laser competition—and single lasers, at that—for good image quality at a low price. The DLP light engine delivers 4K UHD resolution and the UST covers 107% of the Rec.2020 color gamut. It's also one of the few projectors on the market that supports Dolby Vision HDR (as well as HDR10+). The projector also has speckle elimination technology and projects up to a 150-inch diagonal image.

Similar to a few other USTs, the Formovie Theater has an Android-based streaming platform and OS. It's Android TV 11.0 platform comes pre-installed with popular apps including Netflix, Disney+, and Apple TV+, and there's an entire world of additional apps you can download via the Google Play store. Google Assistant Far-field Voice allows you to control the projector from a distance, such as while entering or leaving the room or sitting on your couch. The Formovie Theater also earned our top Editor's Choice award; our review can be found here..


Formovie C3 lifestyle

Formovie C3

  • Rated Brightness 2,250 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Single-Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $1,899

The Formovie Cinema 3 beckons from the consumer brand co-owned by Appotronics, which makes the ALPD laser light engines used by several projector manufacturers. It has a single laser+phosphor light engine and is a less expensive sister model to the triple-laser Formovie Theater, which took 1st place honors in both the ProjectorCentral 2022 Laser TV Showdown and 2023 Laser TV Showdown. Its $1,899 list price is the lowest of all the projectors mentioned in this guide.

Unlike the Formovie Theater, which offers an Android operating system designed for global markets, the 2,250-lumen C3 comes with a Chinese language FengOS operating system, so using an external video source or streaming device is mandatory for U.S. consumers. Regardless of your native language, it does not have any functional streaming apps for the U.S. market.

Formovie C3

The Formovie C3 is a 4K DLP projector that is said to use AI to track the incoming signal and enhance the image quality for the large screen images. This is supported by the MT9669 flagship processor for upgraded image processing capabilities. Other features include MEMC frame interpolation to enjoy smooth motion when viewing sports content or other high-motion content. For movies, the projector is compatible with HDR10 and HLG high dynamic range content as well as HDR10+.

There is an app that allows you to take photos to identify the screen so the projector can automatically adjust, but there is also 8-point geometric correction if you want to fine tune the image. With its 0.23:1 throw ratio lens, the projector can project a 100 inch image with about 8.6 inches of clearance from the screen.

Infrared sensors on either side of the lens that sense when a person is present, and the image will automatically decrease in brightness when someone is nearby to avoid a strong glare. There are three HDMI inputs, and one of those supports eARC. Its dual 15-watt sound system supports Dolby Audio and DTS HD and there is an optical audio out port.

Input lag gets as low as about 40ms in the projector's Game mode, good for casual gamers but a too high for serious competitive gaming.


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Hisense L9H TriChroma Series

  • Rated Brightness 3,000 Lumens
  • Screen Included Yes
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price $4,499 w/ 100-inch Daylight screen
  • Price $5,499 w/ 120-inch Cinema screen

The 3,000 lumen, 4K UHD Hisense LH9 comes with a fixed-focal length lens for either of two image sizes: 100 inch and 120 inches. This triple laser projector comes bundled with its respective screen sizes, with the 100 inch mated with a high gain fresnel Daylight screen, and the 120-inch paired with a 0.6 gain lenticular cinema screen (ProjectorCentral's preferred screen type; you can read more about UST ALR screen technology here). The L9H replaces the L9G, and is designed to completely replace a smart TV, with a built-in TV tuner, a smart OS utilizing Google TV, and closed captioning. Built-in apps include Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, Max, Showtime, Sling TV, YouTube, and Pandora. It is compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa to control the projector, and search for content.

Like the PX1 and PX2-Pro, the LH9 features both Filmmaker Mode and Game Mode. Game Mode automatically activates when a signal is fed from a game console. It reproduces 107% of the BT.2020 color space, and has Dolby Vision, HDR10, HLG HDR compliance. MEMC frame interpolation is on board for smooth motion.

Hisense L9H

This Hisense has dual 20-watt speakers equipped with Dolby Atmos and an optical audio out. It does support eARC for sending audio to a Dolby Atmos sound system and is WiSA ready to stream to a wireless multi-channel sound sound system. Three HDMI and two USB inputs allow for connection of external sources. The projector features both wired and wireless networking, and works with Mac, Windows, and iOS.


Hisense L5H lifestyle

Hisense L5H

  • Rated Brightness 2,700 Lumens
  • Screen Included Yes
  • Light SourceSingle Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $2,999 w/ 100-inch Daylight screen
  • Price $3,799 w/ 120-inch Cinema screen

The Hisense L5H replaces the L5G, and like the Hisense L9 and Leica Cine 1, comes with a fixed-focal length lens for either a 100 inch or 120 inch image, in this case with the ALR screen included. The 100 inch L5H comes with a high-gain fresnel screen, while the 120 inch is mated with a low-gain lenticular ALR screen, ProjectorCentral's preferred screen type. This 2,700 lumen ultra-short throw projector has 4K UHD resolution, a single laser+phosphor light engine, the latest Google TV platform, a built-in TV tuner, and closed captioning, making it a good replacement for a smart TV. It has an option for low blue-light emission to reduce eye strain while you can binge watch your favorite content.

The L5H has wireless connectivity and works with both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, and Google Assistant can be used to not only control the projector, but to search for movies and TV shows, stream apps, and play music. It also has Apple Airplay 2 for streaming an Apple device's screen to the projector, and HomeKit functionality. The Google TV interface consolidates all your app subscriptions, with Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Disney+, Max, Showtime, Sling TV, YouTube, and Pandora coming preinstalled. Additional apps can be downloaded from the Google Play Store.

Hisense L5H

The projector offers Filmmaker Mode for accurately displaying films and TV shows at the frame rate, aspect ratio, color, and sound settings they were meant to be viewed in. To further enhance color, the L5H has Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG support. It also has an AI Picture Mode, which uses AI to scan each frame and adjust brightness, color, contrast, and other settings to bring out the best in each scene. The L5H has smooth motion frame interpolation for fast-paced content like sports and games.

This Hisense is encased in a black chassis with two built-in 20-watt speakers, and the audio system is equipped with a Dolby Atmos mode. It has eArc on one of its three HDMI ports for hooking up an external sound system, as well as an optical audio output and a stereo analog mini jack.


Hisense PX2 Pro Lifestyle

Hisense PX2-PRO

  • Rated Brightness PX1-PRO 2,200 Lumens
  • Rated Brightness PX1 2,000 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price PX2-PRO $2,799

The Hisense PX2-Pro is a $2,799 triple laser projector that replaces the PX1-Pro and has many of the same specs. The Hisense PX1-Pro received our Editor's Choice Award, and won 3rd place in the triple laser category in the Laser TV Showdown 2022. The PX2-Pro tied with the Epson LS800 for 2nd place in the Laser TV Showdown 2023 among laser TVs. This 4K UHD ultra-short throw projector displays an image from 90 inches up to 130 inches, and Hisense suggests using an ALR screen to get the most out of its 2,400 lumens, a brightness that makes it more targeted at low ambient light and dark room conditions. It has powered focus and Auto Geometry Calibration to help simplify the initial setup of the PX2-Pro, though we generally recommend avoiding keystone and geometry correction and setting the projector up manually to preserve image maximum image quality.

The projector reaches 107% of the BT.2020 color space, and has Dolby Vision, HDR10, and HLG HDR compatibility. The Android OS with a Google TV streaming platform provides access to the major services including Netflix, and the projector works with both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

Hisense PX2 Pro front

Its Filmmaker Mode preserves the original frame rate, aspect ratio, color, and sound of the film or TV show being projected, allowing you to see the film as it was intended to be viewed by the filmmakers. Game Mode is automatically activated when the PX2-Pro is connected to a gaming console for low latency. However, judges from this year's Laser TV Showdown found the input lag to be 49.5ms, which is suitable for casual or family gaming only.

The built-in 30-watt speaker system has a Dolby Atmos mode, though along with the Hisense PL1 and Leica Cine 1, it was among the worst-sounding projectors in the 2023 Showdown. The PX-2 Pro has three HDMI ports, an optical out and mini jack for audio, two USBs, an RJ-45 connector, and wireless networking.

Hisense PL1 lifestyle

Hisense PL1

  • Rated Brightness 2,200 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light SourceSingle Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $1,999

The 2,200 lumen Hisense PL1 utilizes a single laser+phosphor light engine, lasting up to 25,000 hours. At that brightness, it's geared more toward low ambient light or dark home theater environments. The PL1 laser TV projects a 4K UHD image from 80 inches to 120 inches, and Hisense recommends an ALR screen to get the most out of the brightness and color. It features HDR10, HLG, and Dolby Vision for visual enhancement.

Filmmaker Mode, a mode common on many home theater projectors, allows movies and TV shows to be viewed how the film creators intended—frame rate, color profiles, aspect ratio, and other elements are true set to industry standards and unneeded processing, such as frame interpolation/MEMC are turned off. Game Mode, with its low latency mode, activates automatically when connected to a game console like a Playstation, Xbox, or Nintendo Switch. Unfortunately, that "low latency" mode has an input lag of 40.4 ms, which is suitable only for casual gaming.

Hisense PL1 fronttop

The PL1 has powered focus and automatic geometric correction if you choose to use it. Its option for low blue light emissions relieves eye strain when watching for an extended period of time. The dual 15-watt speakers feature Dolby Atmos for spatial audio and deeper immersion into the content, whether that's TV, film, sports, or gaming. The Google TV interface comes with pre-installed apps like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Max, Hulu, Showtime, YouTube, Sling TV, and Pandora. Via the Google Play Store, more apps can be downloaded.

Google Assistant can be used to control the PL1 by saying, "Hey Google," and following with a command to stream apps, find movies, and play music. In addition, the projector has HomeKit and Alexa compatibility, and Apple AirPlay 2. With AirPlay, iOS devices can be screen mirrored, or you can send videos and share photos. It also has wireless networking, an optical audio out, and dual HDMI inputs. At just $1,999, the PL1 is a relatively low-cost option for an ultra short throw projector.


JMGO U2

JMGO U2

  • Rated Brightness 2,400 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price $2,999 MSRP

Like the Formovie Theater, the JMGO U2 is a suprisingly affordable triple-laser RGB UST. Like most of the laser TVs out there, it uses the 0.47-inch DLP chip with XPR fast pixel-shifting to achieve 4K resolution on screen, and it comes with a fairly sharp fixed-focus lens that's optimized for a 100-inch image but proved in our testing to work well at any of its rated image sizes between 80 and 120 inches. It's modern, eye-catching design features a pair of raised acoustic-lens waveguides for the premium Dynaudio-branded audio system, which performed well in our test and ranks among the better built-in sound systems for a UST. The projector's large size benefits the bass by providing a good-sized cavity for the two 15-watt full-range drivers, which are supplemented by dedicated tweeters beneath the waveguides that spread out the sound. The U2 also one of a few UST projectors that supports 1080p 3D, and it offers a game mode, though with a relatively high 42 ms of input lag.

JMGO U2

The JMGO U2 has a built-in smart system, called Luna OS, which is limited in its offerings, though it does offer apps including HBO Max, YouTube, and Spotify. The projector also has a nice remote control that is simple, made of aluminum and connects via Bluetooth.

Unfortunately, despite its strengths and its nice fit-and-finish, our review of the U2 revealed flaws in image quality. Though it has an extremely wide color gamut for HDR thanks to its three-laser design, the out-of-the-box color accuracy is poor and the projector has limited color adjustments to fix it. To the extent you can do so, it offers only a single adjustable User mode to store your settings, so you can't optimize the image for both SDR and HDR. And its HDR picture lacked suitable brightness for the format. You can read details in our review.

JMGO makes a bold claim for the U2 on its website, declaring it "The Laser Projector that Outperform's IMAX Theater," an apparent reference to its wide color space spec'd for 114% of the BT.2020 color space. Whatever you might say about its gamut, we can say confidently after our review that this projector doesn't outperform other triple-laser or even single-laser models at its price point.


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JMGO O1 Pro/JMGO O1

  • Rated Brightness JMGO O1 Pro 1,500 Lumens
  • Rated Brightness JMGO O1 800 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light SourceLED
  • Price O1 Pro $1,260
  • Price O1 $1,099 MSRP

The JMGO O1 Pro and JMGO O1 are LED-driven UST projectors with a minimalist design that are quite sophisticated for their price. JMGO went with an LED engine instead of laser to provide a uniquely low-cost UST solution, though the sacrifice is seen clearly in these projectors' native 1080p resolution and relatively low brightness. With the O1 Pro spec'd at 1,500 ANSI lumens and the standard O1 at 800 lumens, they are really best suited for dark- or dim-room viewing, perhaps on a wall or an inexpensive high gain white screen. Though you could add an ALR UST screen to improve contrast in a bright (or dark) room, our preferred lenticular UST screen type with maximum overhead light rejection sacrifices brightness with its negative gain, and the cost of an ALR screen in any event is likely to equal or exceed the cost of the projector.

JMGO O1Pro leftfacing
JMGO O1Pro

This doesn't mean you should reject these products if you're looking for a good entry-level UST solution to get you in the big screen game at relatively low cost, particularly the more premium O1 Pro. Offered in black, JMGO partnered with German camera and lensmaker Leica for the PRO's UST optics system, which is said to reduce internal stray light and make for a sharper image with better contrast. (Following their development work on the O1 Pro, Leica even unveiled plans for their own premium tri-laser 4K UST, the Cine 1, in partnership with Hisense.)

Beyond the lens, the projector is plug-and-play using smart features such as AI cameras and sensors to autofocus and keystone correct the 80- to 100-inch image. The AI camera auto adjusts the brightness for the best image under ambient light conditions. Image processing is handled by a MediaTek MT9669 processor that is touted as premium, and the projector offers MEMC frame interpolation to smooth motion.

JMGO O1 right facing
JMGO O1

The JMGO O1 Pro accepts 4K signals and offers HDR10 compatibility and a Low Blue Light mode said to reduce dangerous hblue light. There's a Low Latency mode for gaming said to be suitable for casual gamers. Amazon Alexa is built-in and supported by a mic on the remote. It has a Dynamic Art Gallery feature in collaboration with MANA, a digital art platform, that will allow you to display artworks curated by artists the world over. The JMGO O1 Pro also features a premium Dynaudio-developed sound system with two 10-watt stereo speakers. It offers JMGO's Luna OS operating system and streaming platform, which is Android-based with a JMGO skin over it.

Both the O1 Pro and O1 share a similar compact, modern design with soft, rounded corners, though the step-down O1 differs in some key respects. Besides its silver and white color scheme and significantly less brightness, its non-Leica lens offers images from 60- to 100-inches diagonal, with 80 inches being the largest recommended size. We have a sample of the O1 Pro and expect to review it shortly.



Leica Cine1 lifestyle

Leica Cine 1

  • Rated Brightness 3,000 Lumens
  • Screen Included No (ALR option available)
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price $8,995 / 100 inch
  • Price $9,495 / 120 inch

From the company that brought us the first 35mm camera, we have the Leica Cine 1. It is a 4K UHD resolution, RGB triple laser projector with DLP technology. The Cine 1 has up to 3,000 lumens, making it usable outside of a dedicated home theater, especially when paired with an ALR screen. While the projector doesn't automatically come with its own screen, there is an option to bundle with a 100 inch or 120 inch ALR screen. The 100 inch screen is a Daylight fresnel screen, whereas the 120 inch is a Cinematic screen using lenticular technology, ProjectorCentral's preferred screen type for USTs.

The Cine 1 is based on a Hisense L9 projector platform and, similar to those models, comes with a fixed focal-length lens good for one of two image size options depending on the model: 100 inch or 120 inch. However, Leica provides a premium Leica-branded Summicron lens that did prove in our testing and in the ProjectorCentral 2023 Laser TV Showdown to be exceptionally sharp in the 100-inch samples we tried.

Leica Cine1

The projector also features an aluminum housing with an automatic dust cover, a built-in 50-watts surround system with Dolby Atmos (which ranked poorly for sound quality in the Showdown), and an HDMI port that supports eARC. It's also WiSA-ready to stream audio directly to a wireless multi-channel sound sound system. True cinema enthusiasts will appreciate having Filmmaker Mode, HDR10+ and Dolby Vision HDR, and rich, wide-gamut color thanks to the triple-laser enging that reaches over 100% of the BT.2020 standard. The onboard Google TV streaming platform includes access to apps for most major services, including Netflix.


LG HU915QB

LG Cinebeam HU915QB/HU915QE

  • Rated Brightness HU915QB 3,000 Lumens
  • Rated Brightness HU915QE3,700 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light SourceTriple Laser+Phosphor
  • Price HU915QB $6,498
  • Price HU915QE $5,489

The LG Electronics HU915QB is LG's high-performance home theater UST projector with a triple laser light engine. Its sister model, the HU915QE, is similar in all respects except the color of the cabinet, lumen output, and what LG says is some sacrifice in color gamut. The HU915QB (black) sports 3,000 lumens, while the HU915QE (white) has 3,700 lumens to withstand a fair amount of ambient light. These USTs are more advanced version of their predecessor, the tri-laser HU8LA, which (for now) remains on the market.

LG HU915QB
LG HU915QB

Unlike other triple laser projectors that use discrete lasers for red, green, and blue light, the LG HU915QB and HU915QE use a red laser and two blue ones, with the second blue laser bouncing light off a phosphor to create the green primary. The result is a color gamut that isn't as spacious as its discrete RGB brethren, but offers less laser speckle on the image and less potential for rainbow effects. Note that all single-chip DLP projectors, even those with discrete RGB light sources that have no need for a color wheel, can suffer from DLP rainbow effect due to sequential timing errors of the colors.

LG HU915QE BG
LG HU915QE

The HU915QB had excellent out of the box image quality in our review, where it earned our coveted Editor's Choice Award. It offers a bright image with excellent contrast, though it benefits from calibration for best accuracy. To that end, the HU915QB has extensive color calibration controls and is also the only UST projector on the market that can be calibrated with Portrait Displays' Calman AutoCal functions if you or a pro you hire has that software and the appropriate instruments. Furthermore, the LG HU915QB has outstanding dynamic tone-mapping for HDR, which is rarely seen among USTs. This projector uses the larger 0.66-inch 4K DLP imager typically seen only in premium models, which some say provides a sharper image with better color saturation.

LG includes a Game Optimizer function that can be used to adjust image settings for different game types and lowers input lag, though our lowest measured lag at 67 ms remains far too high for all but the most casual gaming. On the other hand, one strong suit is the excellent webOS smart TV platform borrowed from LG's televisions which provide access to Netflix, HBO Max, and Disney+ among others, and support for 4K HDR and Dolby Atmos sound. Unfortunately, like the HU85LA that preceded it, LG's built-in sound system for these 915 models and the 715QW is a disappointment and the projector fared poorly in our 2022 Laser TV Showdown audio tests; you'll likely want an external sound system. The projector also comes with LG's Magic Remote control, which is an air-mouse navigation—but you can use it like a regular remote if you so wish.

LG HU85LA Lifestyle trolley

LG CineBeam HU85LA 4K Laser Smart Home Theater Projector

  • Rated Brightness 2,700 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Triple Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $4,239

The LG HU85LA, released in the summer of 2019, was the most advanced home theater UST projector we'd seen to that point, but was leapfrogged in 2022 with the more advanced HU915Q models listed above. However, it was a ProjectorCentral Editor's Choice when we reviewed it and it remains on the market, and in our Buyer's Guide, for now.

Despite its high cost, the HU85LA doesn't include a screen as part of the package, and its onboard stereo audio system uses a modest pair of 5-watt speakers that ran out of steam quickly during our review, so you may want an external sound system. However, it still qualifies as a smart TV replacement, thanks to its built-in digital TV tuner, and its WebOS streaming platform that supports Netflix, YouTube, and a browser, plus an app store for more. It even offers voice control with LG ThinQ, Google Assistant, and Alexa.

HDR support in the HU85LA is limited to HDR10, making it one the few projectors included here that doesn't support HLG. It's also one of the few that lacks 3D support. On the other hand, as reported in our review, it offers effective dynamic tone-mapping to optimize HDR10. And its 2,700 lumen rating should be enough to deliver an image that can easily stand up to moderate levels of ambient light at the 90 to 120-inch screen size LG recommends, especially if mated with an ALR UST screen.

Hisense 120L10E1 FrontAngle
LG HU85LA

As with most projectors is this category, the LG HU85LA is built around a laser-phosphor light source paired with a DLP chip that uses TI's XPR technology to deliver 3840x2160 resolution. Unlike most, though, it uses the larger 0.66-inch DMD, which uses two-phase rather than four-phase pixel-shifting that is said by some to deliver a sharper image. More notable is that it fully eliminates a color wheel by using red and blue lasers plus a third blue laser and phosphor for green, which LG says delivers more vivid color than a color wheel. Its DCI-P3 coverage is rated at 97% and its contrast ratio at 2,000,000:1.

The white case, which measures 5 x 26.8 x 13.7 inches (HWD) and weighs 26.7 pounds, is stylish enough to look good in a living area, thanks in part to a fabric grille covering on the audience-facing side. LG says it can be mounted in front of the screen or behind it, and on a flat surface below or a ceiling mount above. It also offers the setup convenience of 12-point geometric correction for keystone, pincushioning, and barrel distortion. Thanks to an aggressive 0.19 throw ratio for the lens, the distance from the screen-facing side to the screen for the recommended 90 to 120-inch sizes ranges from 2.2 to 7.2 inches.


LG HU175QW

LG CineBeam HU715QW

  • Rated Brightness 2,500 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light SourceSingle Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $2,997

The LG CineBeam HU715QW, a Projector Central Editor's Choice Award winner, is a single laser+phosphor UST projector and LG's entry-level model. It has good out-of-the-box image quality and extensive picture settings, but the more limited gamut typical of single-laser projectors—it's rated for only 86% DCI-P3 coverage. It uses the more common 0.47-inch 4K DLP chip rather than the larger 0.66-inch used in LG's high-end triple laser projectors, but we found in our review that it's mated here with a sharp lens with motorized focus. It supports HDR10 and HLG HDR assisted by LG's dynamic tone-mapping, and HGiG (HDR Gaming Interest Group) is on board for console gaming, though with a low measured input lag of 53.9 ms it's not suitable for serious competition or fast games.

LG HU175QW

The LG HU715QW has two 20-watt speakers, each with a tweeter and a woofer, but it still ranked in the bottom tier in the audio tests from our 2022 Laser TV Showdown, and an external soundbar or audio system is highly recommended. Fortunately, there's an eARC HDMI for exporting up to Dolby Atmos sound quality from the excellent webOS streaming platform. LG provides their Magic Remote control, which is highly functional, and comes with a voice search mic.


Nexigo Aurora Pro lifestyle

Nexigo Aurora Pro

  • Rated Brightness 2,400 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price $2,699

NexiGo saw its beginnings in 2020 as an online retailer of consumer electronics like laptops, desktops, and other electronics, with a webcam being the first product they launched. Their 4K UHD projector, the $2,499 NexiGo Aurora Pro, can project from 80 inches to 150 inches?a 150 inch image is produced with about 1.5 feet of clearance from the screen wall. It offers 2,400 lumens and reaches 107% of the BT.2020 color gamut and has both HDR10 and Dolby Vision HDR compliance.

Like many projectors, the Aurora Pro has an Android TV platform, which in this case comes pre-installed with Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and Plex, with other streaming services and apps being available to download. There is also support for 3D.

Nexigo Aurora Pro

The 60-watt speakers produce big sound with four 15-watt speakers (two woofers and two full-range speakers), and the projector recognizes and supports Dolby Atmos. It has an optical audio out as well as a 3.5mm audio jack, three HDMI inputs, and three USB connectors. The Aurora Pro's remote is backlit?a nice feature not found on most projectors.

The Aurora Pro claims a low input lag of 12ms, and it measured at 17.8 ms, either way it's still suitable for serious gaming. It has MEMC for smooth motion to enjoy sports and other fast-moving content with crisp definition, and both 4-point and 8-point geometric correction.


Nomvdic P2000 lifestyle2

Nomvdic P2000

  • Rated Brightness 2,500 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Triple Laser
  • Price $2,799

NOMVDIC is a newer projector manufacturer, with the company being founded in 2021. The $2,899 NOMVDIC P2000 is a 4K UHD ultra-short throw projector with a triple laser light engine powered by an ALPD 4.0 light engine.

The P2000 projects up to 150 inches, and its 2,500 lumens will go further when paired with an ALR screen for ambient light conditions. Reaching 100% of the BT.2020 wide color gamut, the P2000 has support for HDR10 and HLG. A Fire TV Stick 4K Max is included with purchase, allowing access to top streaming apps and a plethora of choices for entertainment.

Nomvdic P2000 fronttop

It has MEMC for smooth motion and support for 3D content. Both 5Ghz Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are available routes for wireless connectivity, and content can be screen mirrored from mobile devices. The custom, built-in sound system has two 25-watt speakers from Harman Kardon, a leading manufacturer in the audio space that has partnered with other UST brands and has a proven success record in those products. The system features Dolby and DTS support, as well as eARC for feeding high-quality sound to an external system if you choose to do so.

The projector features auto geometric correction to assist setup including 4-corner, and warping capabilities to project on a curved surface.

Optoma CinemaX D2 Series Lifestyle BG

Optoma CinemaX D2 Smart

  • Rated Brightness 3,000 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light SourceSingle Laser+Phosphor
  • Price D2 Smart $2,699

The Optoma Cinemax D2 Smart, launched in the fall of 2022 and reviewed here, is descended from for the CinemaX P2 and the original CinemaX P1 that was one of the earliest laser TVs to reach market. Originally released as part of a series that included the D2 Smart and the stripped down D2 without WiFi streaming, the latter was recently discontinued while the D2 Smart lives on. It uses the same 0.47-inch 4K DLP chip and 3,000-lumen rated brightness found in the earlier P2; note that the current claim of 30,000 hours of laser lifetime vs the previously cited 20,000 hours is based on using the ECO power mode rather than full brightness. The D2 Smart offers an Android TV streaming platform that gives access to apps from the Google Play store, including an authorized Netflix app (which doesn't appear in all Android-based projectors). Google Assistant is built-in, and the Optoma Cinemax D2 can become a smart home hub that works with your other products, dim the lights, and even manage tasks and see your calendar.

Optoma CinemaX D2 Series Lifestyle BG

The D2 Smart also boasts some impressive gaming specs, with 16 ms lag time for 4K/60 signals and capability for 240Hz smooth motion refresh to achieve 4 ms input lag for 1080p PC gaming. That's the lowest we've seen for any UST projector and competitive with today's better gaming projectors, and represents a significant upgrade from the earlier CinemaX models.

Another update to the D2 Smart is an HDMI port equipped with eARC, which allows you to pass full resolution Dolby Atmos bitstreams from the onboard streaming platform or a connected source to an external Atmos soundbar or A/V receiver. There's also a built-in dual 10-watt speaker system, though it's a redesign from the earlier, well-regarded system found in the P1 and P2.

Optoma CinemaX D2 Series Lifestyle BG
The Cinemax D2 Smart is available in black or white.

As with prior CinemaX units (and most single-laser USTs), the projector is rated for Rec.709 color gamut, and supports HDR10 and HLG. Compliance for 1080p 3D playback has been carried over. And with ISF calibration modes and a full suite of color calibration controls, the D2 models should provide a high degree of optimization. Setup is supported with 3x3 geometric correction. The D2 Smart comes in either black or white to mate with your décor.



Samsung Premiere2 800

Samsung "The Premiere" LSP9T

  • Rated Brightness 2,800 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Laser
  • Price $5,664

At the 2024 CES in Las Vegas, Samsung announced new USTs pending for later in the year, including a flagship 8K model, a compact desktop projector with interactive capabilities, and updates to the LSP9T and LSP7T (below) that will add brightness and an updated video processor. Until then, the LSP9T and LSP7T will remain on the market. The current top-of-the-line LSP9T fared well in our review, earning a Highly Recommended award.

Featuring a light engine with separate red, green, and blue lasers, the LSP9T achieves a claimed 147% of the DCI-P3 color space used today for the mastering of 4K content, and even 106% of the full Rec.2020 gamut that remains a distant target for most consumer displays today. This discrete three-laser RGB design should also reduce or eliminate the usual single-chip DLP rainbow artifacts. Brightness is rated at 2,800 lumens, contrast at 2,000,000:1 full on/off (peak) or 1,500:1 ANSI. Samsung is using the larger and better performing 0.66-inch DLP XPR chip in this model. Laser life is rated at 20,000 hours.

The LSP9T is cited as the first projector compatible with HDR10+ high dynamic range content, a more advanced form of HDR10 initially developed by Samsung that offers dynamic metadata (similar to Dolby Vision) to assure a better result than is usually found with the static metadata found on regular HDR10 titles. However, HDR10+ content is still not widely found, and the projector will process regular HDR10 as well. The LSP9T also supports the UHD Alliance's Filmmaker mode, which recognizes metadata in compatible content to engage a picture mode that optimizes the image based on the creator's intent.

Samsung LSP9T rightangle

Audio in the LSP9T is handled with an integrated 4.2-channel sound system driven by a total of 40 watts of power and utilizing Samsung's Acoustic Beam technology to provide a more enveloping image. It's one of the better-sounding systems you'll find among these USTs and it ranked well in the audio portion of our 2022 Laser TV Showdown. Smart technology appears with Samsung's excellent Smart TV Powered by Tizen streaming platform for streaming, which includes a working Netflix app, and it offers compatibility with both Amazon Alexa and Samsung's Bixby voice assistants. NFC-enabled screen mirroring from some mobile devices is also accommodated.

The LSP9T measures in at 21.7 x 5.5 x 14.5 inches (WHD). Its 0.19:1 throw ratio lens is unsually short among USTs and allows it to cast a 100-inch image with the back of the projector just 4.5 inches off the screen wall, or its maximum 130-inch image from 9.4 inches away. This could prevent many users from having to move their credenza or TV stand back from the screen in order to acheive a large 120- or 130-inch image.


Samsung Premiere1 800

Samsung "The Premiere" LSP7T

  • Rated Brightness 2,200 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Laser
  • Price $2,897

According to an announcement made at the 2024 CES, Samsung's LSP7T will enjoy a rechristening later in the year that will see it get a boost in brightness and a more sophisticated image processor. In the meantime, this step-down model to the LSP9T features a similar cosmetic to that current flagship, but is slightly smaller at approximately 21 x 5.4 x 13.5 inches (WHD). Its image size maxes out at 120 inches, and its lens has a slightly longer throw ratio at 0.25:1, which casts a 100-inch image when the rear of the 13.5-inch deep projector is about 12 inches from the screen wall.

The primary cost savings comes in the use of a single blue-laser combined with a yellow phosphor wheel to achieve the three primary colors—a common approach used in other competing UST models in this price class. Consequently, color gamut is claimed at a more limited 83% DCI-P3, which is in keeping with this approach. Also similar to other models at its price, the LSP7T uses the smaller 0.47-inch DLP XPR 4K-resolution chipset. At 2,200 lumens, it's also among the least bright laser-driven UST living room projectors available.

The LSP7T features the same Smart TV by Tizen streaming platform found inthe LSP9T and in Samsung's flat-panel TVs, along with voice control via Alexa and Bixby and NFC mirroring. Its integrated 2.2-channel sound system is driven by 30 watts of amplifier power, and basically mimics the excellent audio performance we found in the LSP9T in our 2022 Laser TV Showdown audio tests.


Ultimea lifestyle2

Ultimea Thor T60

  • Rated Brightness 4,000 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Tri-Laser
  • Price $4,999

The Ultimea Thor T60 is a 4K UHD projector with an RGB triple laser light engine. One of the brightest UST projectors on the market, it's designed to work in high brightness environments like living rooms, family rooms, and media rooms where ambient light control may be limited. Paired with an ambient light rejecting screen, the projector should be quite enjoyable for TV watchers during the day. It projects images from 80 inches up to 200 inches diagonal.

The T60 claims 120% of the expanded BT.2020 color gamut, a top-tier microprocessor with 2GB of RAM and 32GB ROM, as well as an AI Smart Image Engine. The projector has HDR10 and Dolby Vision compliance, and its 8-point calibration allows for further improvement of color. The IDDW technology (integral dynamic diffuser wheel) is said to combat laser speckle artifacts sometimes seen on laser projectors, though it was found in the ProjectorCentral 2023 Laser TV Showdown to have mildly distracting laser speckle and rainbow artifacts.

Ultimea Thor T60

MEMC provides smooth motion, which can be toggled on for sports or off for TV and movie viewing. Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) automatically optimizes settings for responsive gaming, claiming an input lag of between 10 ms and 25 ms, making it suitable for both serious and casual gaming.

The Android TV OS 11 includes apps for HBO, Disney+, Hulu, and YouTube, as well as access to other apps via the Google Play store, though as with most Android TV projectors Netflix is not among them. The built-in Google Assistant allows for smart control of the projector, and it has Chromecast built in. It also has 3D compatibility. The integrated soundbar has stereo15-watt speakers, driven by a tweeter and woofer for each channel, it the system supports Dolby Audio, Dolby Atmos, and DTS HD. One HDMI port has eARC for feeding digital audio to an external sound receiver or soundbar.

VAVA Chroma Lifestyle BG

VAVA Chroma

  • Rated Brightness 2,200 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source RGB Tri-Laser+Phosphor
  • Price $3,549

VAVA followed the release of its VAVA 4K single-laser projector with this triple-laser discrete RGB model. It offers 2,200 lumens from its advanced Appotronics ALPD 4.0 laser light source that claims 106% of the Rec.2020 color gamut along with reduced laser speckle. Like the original VAVA, the Chroma uses the 0.47-inch DLP chip with Texas Instruments' XPR fast pixel switching technology, giving it full 4K UHD resolution. The projector supports HDR10 high dynamic range as well as 1080p 3D playback, and can project up to 150-inch diagonal.

VAVA Chroma right facing

For gaming, the projector measured a 42.2ms input lag, which is good enough for casual gaming but not competive first-person shooters or other games that require super-fast response time. The built-in 30-watt stereo Harman Kardon sound system is also among the best we've heard in a UST, thanks in part to projector's large size which gave it a little extra bass as heard in the audio tests from our 2022 Laser TV Showdown.

With Amazon's Alexa built in, the VAVA Chroma allows you to control your experience and your smarthome devices via the remote's microphone. For your content needs, the VAVA includes a smart Android 9.0 TV system. Keep an eye out for our full review of the VAVA Chroma currently in progress.


VAVA 4K UST lifestyle rocks

VAVA 4K Projector

  • Rated Brightness 2,500 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Laser
  • Price $2,799

The VAVA 4K Projector is less of a smart TV replacement than most of the other choices included here, with no digital TV tuner, no voice control, and no screen included. However, it still offers smart TV features, courtesy of Android 7.1 and the Aptoide app store, which has apps for Netflix, Hulu and more. It also boasts an integrated Harman Kardon sound system with 60 watts of power, dts-HD, and Dolby Audio that fared well in our evaluation (see our review).

The white case, designed with rounded corners for an attractive look, measures 4.2 x 21 x 14.5 inches (HWD) and weighs 23.8 pounds. Inside is a laser light source, an RGB phosphor color wheel, and a 0.47-inch DMD that uses TI's XPR technology to produce 3840x2160 resolution. VAVA rates the color coverage at greater than 100% of Rec.709 and the contrast ratio at 1,500,000:1. Maximum input resolution is 3840x2160.

VAVA 4K UST front angle
VAVA 4K VA-LT002

You can position the projector on a flat surface below the screen or in ceiling mount above it and either for front or rear projection. A welcome convenience is eight-point geometric correction for keystone as well as pincushion and barrel distortion. For the recommended 80 to 150-inch screen, the distance from screen to projector is just 3.3 to 10.9 inches.

Note that the warranty is shorter than for most of the competition, at only one year, so you may want to add an extended warranty. Also, HDR support is limited to HDR10, and there's no 3D support yet. However, VAVA plans to add 3D as part of a planned firmware update during the 2nd quarter of 2020. The upper end of the recommended 80 to 150-inch image size is much larger than offered by most UST lensing systems. The 2,500 ANSI lumen rating should easily be bright enough for a 2D image in moderate ambient light even at that large size.


ViewSonic X2000B-4K

ViewSonic X2000B-4K

  • Rated Brightness 2,000 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Single Laser + Phosphor
  • Price $2,733

The ViewSonic X2000B-4K is a smart, compact, single laser phosphor UST projector that appears to replace the ever so fleeting, LED-driven X1000-4K that was only briefly on the market. The X2000B-4K should be more of a keeper, as it proved itself an excellent projector that reviewed well, earning our Highly Recommended award, and was a surprise sleeper in the single-laser category of our 2022 Laser TV Showdown. It produces pleasing color, accurate skin tones, and high contrast with good black level performance and shadow detail for a DLP projector. The X2000B offers HDR and HLG for high dynamic range content, though it's only rated for Rec.709 color gamut. It supports 1080p 3D.

ViewSonic X2000B-4K

This 4K UHD projector (it uses the 0.47-inch DLP XPR chip) is easy to set up thanks to built-in 4-corner adjustment, and it's equipped with an effective powered focus mechanism. It has built-in dual integrated Harmon Kardon speakers (10-watt tweeter and 15-watt woofer) with Dolby and DTS decoding on board and delivered clean sound and good dynamics in the audio tests for our 2022 Laser TV Showdown. The X2000B-4K is also equipped with Bluetooth in and out. You can use it to connect with your wireless device for listening to music, or send the audio out to a Bluetooth speaker or headphones.

Viewsonic dropped the ball on their proprieatry built-in streaming, which is clunky, so as with many projectors, we recommend you plan for adding your own streaming dongle or player. As with some other models, the X2000B has embedded Wi-Fi for sharing of content from mobile devices. It has Instant Power On, so you can use your projector without the wait. Check out our full review of the X2000B for more details.


Wemax Nova 4K

Wemax Nova 4K

  • Rated Brightness 2,100 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Single Laser + Phosphor
  • Price $2,099 MSRP

The Wemax Nova offers a fairly solid hardware offering, at the core of which is an Appotronics ALPD 3.0 single-laser+phosphor light module. As the name implies, it's a 4K projector that uses the 0.47-inch DLP chip with XPR fast pixel-switching. Color gamut tops out at Rec.709, which isn't ideal but is common among most single-laser USTs, and while the projector supports HDR10 content there is unfortunately no support for 3D. Image size ranges from 80 to 150 inches and the motorized-focus lens proved fairly sharp and free of color aberrations in our review, though the preferred lenticular screen type for USTs typically only goes up to 120 inches, and we generally recommend avoiding going larger than that anyway for a relatively low-brightness projector like this since the image dims the larger you go.

Wemax Nova 4K

The onboard Android web-streaming system provides good image quality on most apps and provides access to apps from the Google Play store, though like with many Android projectors there's no support for Netflix, so you'll likely end up adding your own streaming dongle or player. We found that audio system was also very good among USTs, with four speakers sharing 30 watts of power and backed with beamforming technology to provide a more immersive viewing experience.

Unfortunately, despite its strengths, the Wemax Nova proved itself in our review to be a bit of a dud on image quality. Though it functioned surprisingly well with regular SDR content and showed a good image with accurate color and high contrast right out of the box, with HDR content it exhibited a too-dark image with visible banding artifacts, and its rudimentary menu system offers virtually no calibration controls to fix its issues. Furthermore, our sample emitted audible coil whine, which is a form of high-pitched electronic noise separate from fan noise that afflicts some laser projectors. Some people are more sensitive to this than others, and coil whine is typically masked somewhat by whatever soundtrack is playing, but on the Nova it bothered our reviewer enough to cross it off his own shopping list. The Nova's limitations may still make it an option if you don't plan on watching any HDR and just want to use it as a day to day TV, but for most shoppers this is probably one to avoid given the other options available.


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XGIMI Aura

  • Rated Brightness 2,400 Lumens
  • Screen Included No
  • Light Source Laser
  • Price $2,349

Upon its release in October 2021, XGIMI's Aura was both the company's first laser projector and, at $2,499, the least expensive laser UST on the market. It's a solid, well-engineered projector at its price, and it reviewed well at ProjectorCentral, earning our Highly Recommended award.

Not surprisingly, the Aura uses a similar architecture to other entry-level laser USTs with a 0.47-inch 4K DLP chip and a single blue laser and phosphor wheel to derive the primary colors, which in this case contributes to somewhat limited color gamut that's rated at 90% Rec.709 and 80% DCI-P3. But its 2,400 ANSI lumen brightness is competitive with others in its price range, and it arrives with a number of plusses some others don't offer, including a good quality built-in Android TV 10.0 streaming platform, the ability to playback 3D content, and a 25,000 hour lifespan for the laser that's 5,000 hours more than most competitors can claim. Keep in mind that if you watch the projector for 4 hours a day, that adds up to an extra 3.5 years or 17 years total at that rate of use.

The Aura claims an image size from 80 to 150 inches. With its 0.23:1 throw ratio lens, it'll do a 100-inch image with the back of the projector 8.2 inches from the screen wall, a 120-inch image from 11.7 inches, and its max 150-inch image from 17.3 inches. Of course, if you mate the projector with a UST ALR screen, which we always recommend, you'll likely be limited to a 120-inch image. 8-point geometric correction is included as well.

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The Aura features an attractive two-toned designed with a fashionable sloped top, with a dark front grille that hides a Harman Kardon stereo sound system with a dedicated tweeter and woofer for each channel, driven by 15 watts each; it supports both Dolby and DTS audio tracks, and the system scored highly in the audio tests for our 2022 Laser TV Showdown. Back panel connections include both an optical audio output for driving an outboard system and a 3.5mm analog headphone output. Video inputs include three HDMI 2.0 ports and USB. Bluetooth is on board for streaming to the speakers from your mobile device, and network connections are supported with the built-in WiFi or an Ethernet port.