3 reasons to buy a smart projector – and 2 not to

Looking to get the best projector? We look at the pros and cons of going for a smart projector

(Image credit: Future)

Having the best TV is all well and good but what about when you want to watch something massive? Well, you'll need one of the best projectors, of course. 

Now, you can always get one of the best 8K TVs in a huge size, like 75-inches and 85-inches, but there is something great about having a projector cover an entire wall, or at least most of a wall.

But projectors offer a few advantages. 

Notably, you can probably get a larger projector than TV – some even go up to over 100-inches – and your devices, such as a PlayStation 5, are going to struggle less outputting to 1080p or 4K resolutions. 

We'll go more into the exact details below, both for and against, but getting a decent projector is a great shout for anyone looking to host a movie night or just regularly fill your living room with a blockbuster. 

As we're now in August, getting ready for the winter – a core feature of which should be snuggling in the living room – is a must and a projector might be the missing piece. 

Let's jump in, looking at the pros and cons of buying a smart projector. 

Reasons to buy a smart projector

The best projector: Image depicts family sat on sofas around projector screen

(Image credit: Canva)

1. Everything looks great – straight away 

Unlike an 8K TV, which can have some teething issues upscaling content, a projector looks great immediately, thanks to displaying content in HD or 4K on a larger scale. 

It's unlikely that you'd need to faff around with too many settings to get a projector up and running, especially if your plan is to stream from Netflix and the other best streaming services

The same is true for gaming, especially console gaming, which can often require changing various settings to get the very best content. Not so on a projector and we recommend the Benq TK700STI, which is perfect for 4K gaming. 

2. Projectors are pretty cheap 

Now, we're not saying that projectors are cheap – just that, compared to a high-end 4K or 8K TV, projectors can often be the more affordable option. 

For example, the Epson EH-TW9400 has an affordable 4K/UHD option that looks fantastic on the wall without breaking the bank, or at least breaking the bank less than the 8K monster, Samsung QN900B

Of course, a more standard TV, such as the superb Samsung AU9000, will cost less than a high-quality projector but won't provide 80+ inches of screen real estate. 

It really depends what you want to do and we content that if your goal is to get a picture that is as big as possible, a projector is (slightly) more cost effective. 

3. Make your space into a cinema 

The best thing about a projector is pretty simple: it looks like a cinema. Everything is really big and you even get the projected light effect. 

If you've been missing the cinema during the pandemic, or just want a cheap-ish way of making one at home, we can't recommend a projector enough. 

Some of our favourite options, like the ViewSonic M2, are completely portable, too, meaning you can set up the big screen wherever you go. 

Reasons not to buy a smart projector

BenQ GS1

(Image credit: BenQ)

1. 8K TVs have a better picture 

In terms of visuals, it's hard to beat the best 8K TVs – everything about them is turned up to the max. You'll pay for the privilege, but anyone wanting the very best should look at some options. 

T3's pick, the incredible Samsung QN900B, can be scaled up to a pretty massive 85-inches, too, which is most likely getting close to a wall or projector stand. 

Of course, once you've installed the 8K TV on a wall, moving the thing is pretty much impossible (or at least very difficult), whereas a projector by its very design is movable, so take that into consideration. 

2. Projectors are still fairly expensive 

As with anything that is truly high-quality, a great projector is going to cost a fair amount of money, especially if you're also buying a screen. 

On a pound-for-pound basis, we'd still say it was cheaper than getting a giant 8K TV – especially if you want to project over 90 inches – but it's by no means cheap. 

There are some budget options available but these almost always come with drawbacks, like a low resolution. 

Max Slater-Robins

Max Slater-Robins has written for T3 now on and off for over half a decade, with him fitting in serious study at university in between. Max is a tech expert and as such you'll find his words throughout T3.com, appearing in everything from reviews and features, to news and deals. Max is specifically a veteran when it comes round to deal hunting, with him seeing out multiple Black Friday campaigns to date.