As you already know, different projectors have different resolutions. The most popular ones are :
- SVGA (800 x 600)
- XGA (1024 x 768)
- WXGA (1280 x 800) – that is, slightly higher than 720p (1280 x 720)
- WUXGA (1920 x 1200)
- HD (1920 x 1080) – also referred to as 1080p
However, which resolution is best for you? This may seem like a bit of a mystery, but it's pretty easy to figure out!
It's important to buy a projector with the right resolution, or more importantly, avoid the wrong resolution, because this will help you get the best possible picture relative to the amount you pay for it.
Currently, WXGA (1280 x 800) and HD (1920 x 1080) are the most common projector resolutions. An HD projector has about twice the number of pixels as a WXGA projector. This means that an HD projector will project a sharper image and will have better compatibility with high-definition sources – such as Gaming Stations and PC's, Blu-Ray Players, and Media Players like the Apple TV and Google Chromecast.
Where projectors are concerned, what you are watching will make a huge difference in the quality of your image. A low-quality signal fed to your projector will look like a low-quality image when projected. This is more noticeable on a larger screen.
You should try to match your projector with the native resolution of your PC or Video Player. For example, your Blu-ray player and Xbox 360 typically put out a 1080p (HD) signal.
Next, there are two different resolutions for HDTV, 720p resolution (1280×720) and 1080p (1920×1080). The fundamental difference between 720p and 1080p is the number of pixels for displaying information.
How does resolution affect picture quality?
For home theatre use, 1080p resolution projectors work best and are quite affordable. If you want your projector to double as both a video and a data projector at a lower cost, you could consider the 1280 x 800 (WXGA) format, as well as data projectors using WXGA.
While 720p projectors can deliver impressive HD images, the picture quality in terms of image details is better with a 1080p projector. The latter has the ability to show all 1080 lines of the signal in their native, uncompressed format.
A higher resolution projector generally means better picture quality especially on larger screens where higher resolution images will look sharper and less block-like.
This also means that you can sit closer to the screen without seeing the apparent pixelation. Higher resolution projectors will also be less likely to require signal compression and its associated loss in quality. For example, HDTV signals will look better on 720p projectors than 480p projectors.
This may all seem a bit complicated, but it's actually quite easy to figure out. Ultimately, the projector resolution you use will depend on your computer and the quality of the content you wish to share or project. So, before you buy a projector do check its resolution and figure out if it's right for you. Here's to happy viewing with the right projector!