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Topic: Please help choosing short throw projector
Joined: May 22, 2017
Posts: 2
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Hello everyone!

I can't seem to find ideal projector for my room. It's for my small home theatre room. Firstly bought Sony HW45ES, absolutely loved picture quality and everything, but my room is too small to put it far enough to project 100" image. Had to sell it unfortunately. Then tried Optoma 1080.. After Sony, it seemed so cheap and build and picture quality weren't there, but it could project necessary image size though. Sold it!

My requirements are.. Projector that can project 100" image from less than 2m, has optical zoom and horiz/vertical shift, max quiet fan, great picture quality for best home cinema experience. Planning to spend 3000-4000$.

If you can suggest me best possible projector for the job, I'd appreciate it very much, as it's been struggle to find the right one..

Thank you!
Joined: Mar 28, 2005
Posts: 11,647
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Unfortunately, to my knowledge, you aren't going to get it.

The BenQ HT2150ST is a short throw model which will be better than the Optoma and has a bit of zoom, but isn't anywhere near the Sony in image quality. It has no lens shift, and must be placed at the top edge of the screen.

It won't reach the black levels of the Sony, or the quietness of the Sony.

Sony has a ultra short throw projector, and it's $25,000:

I'm sure it is excellent.

The reality is that good short throw is hard to achieve, and the lensing system is tough to get right. Ultra short throw is almost always a terrible experience. While we have seen an uptick with a few short throw models, like the Optoma and BenQ, they aren't top shelf units. They are entry level.


Because the lens trades off some image quality for the short throw distance. The ability to add lens shift would be well outside what short throw is capable of. Likewise, even getting a bit of zoom is unusual. So, when manufacturers are asked to deliver the best quality, for the lowest cost, they don't make short throw projectors. They make standard throw models, like that Sony you had. Or the Epson 5040, or the JVC models. The cheapest projectors are almost always mid-throw projectors as well. The lenses are cheaper, and the quality is better, so that's what they make.

This leaves people who have your type of setup really in a tough bind. You fall into a room which isn't standard for front projection, and your budget is almost meaningless because people that have $4,000 to spend, have rooms which support a nicer projector, which manufacturers agree upon will not be short throw.

I'm sorry to say that you aren't going to find anything that I'm aware of which will touch the Sony for anywhere near the budget you have, and only the Sony 4K, linked above, is comparable to the Sony you returned.

Something like this might work, but is probably in the $15,000 range...

I know, it sucks.
AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology consultation during the build and installation process in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.
Joined: May 22, 2017
Posts: 2
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Thank you so much for your answer! And you just confirmed my biggest concerns I thought I just wasn't looking hard enough and there must be the right projector, there must be... Reality is, I could put HW45ES or similar projector at the very, very back of my room 1cm from the back wall where my couch is gonna be, I tested it and it does project EXACTLY 100" image with max zoom, however that would make me ceiling mount the projector right on top of my head, because there's sloped ceiling, not sure if it's the best option, all the heat would come right at face, uh...

Saw the VZ1000ES before, it must be superb, too bad I'd rather spend that money on a new car

Maybe there is decent projectors like Sony that has perhaps slightly shorter throw ratio, any extra centimeter count if I can get it closer to screen and more far away from couch and head? Otherwise, I might have to go back for HW45 where I returned it and install it even in such bad spot, if there's no other choice... Basically I need projector that can do the job below 3m, and Sony did project 100" at exactly 3m or something like 2.95m distance (from screen to front of the lens).