Ask the Expert: Renting a video projector can range from $300 or more. How do I know I’m renting the right one?
The cost for a projector rental is based on few factors:
How bright of an image do you need? The brightness of the projector is determined by the number of lumens, which is amount of light produced. The more lumens, the brighter the image, the more expensive the projector. Darker rooms don’t require as bright an image or as many lumens. Rooms with lots of windows create a lot of natural light, so you need more lumens to produce a vivid image in order for people to see it. This requires a more expensive projector.
Takeaway: As you increase your screen size, or if you have serious problems with light, you should consider increasing your projector brightness accordingly.
SD vs. HD. vs 4K. Depending on the image quality you require (standard definition, high definition or 4k, and the size of the screen it will be projected on, the cost will follow. Most people now choose high definition as the standard for their presentations. Fortunately, as projector brightness increases, generally the resolution also increases as well as the ability to project on a larger screen.
Takeaway: The larger the screen the more brightness and resolution will be needed to have clear, visible images.
Distance and Lenses. More expensive projectors have the flexibility to change lenses to adjust to the distance and size of the screen you are using. Cheaper projectors have one static lens that cannot be removed and need to be a certain distance from the screen. That means you are limited to placing the projector at a required distance and a particular screen size. Some lenses will also not accommodate an image to fill the entire projector screen, leaving black space around the image.
Takeaway: Detailed room layouts are critical to properly place the projector in the correct proximity to the screen.
Other Specifications. There are many other differences between projectors, such as Contrast Ratio, which refers to the difference between the brightest part of the image and the darkest, and uniformity, which is the consistency of brightness over the entire image.
Getting back to the first question: How bright of an image do you need? Each projector has different qualities and specifications. Just like when you buy a television, at first glance they all look alike, but the specs and features vary, along with the cost. The same goes for projectors. Your Event Production Manager can assist you with determining your exact requirements for a projector, as well as proper placement in the room.
Source: Event Resources, Inc., Http://www.alectrosystems.com/video/projection/projector_specs.htm