We might be back at the movies and watching the T20 World Cup games at our favourite nightspots but not at the same frequency as 2019 or before. Blame it on a post-pandemic world. Home projectors are on a roll. Quite a few homes have opted for a home projector over a TV, many are opting for a blended model – a home projector in the living room or den for big screen entertainment and a TV in the bedroom for short bursts.
Picking the right projector for you just got more complex:
Buying a home projector never involved a simple decision making process. That process has only got more complex in 2021. Ultra-short throw projectors are trending now. An Ultra-short throw projector uses its reflector lens to spread out its light signal across a minimal distance. You don’t need more than 20-inches for a massive projection. But not everyone is willing to spring Rs 5 lakh for a home projector. Conventional projectors have evolved too. Optoma’s new UHD35+ is one of the first in its class that is billed as a ‘Cinema Gaming Projector’. Should you be interested if you’re a compulsive gamer? We certainly think so.
Set up is mighty simple:
We’ll say this, projectors like the UHD35+ are best mounted on your ceiling. I set it up a few feet above the ground to create a projection that was about 9-10 feet away in my entertainment den. Set up was effortless. The remote offers easy keystone correction while a set of rubber feet at the base allow you to tweak the projection angles. There’s also a focus dial on the projector (front of the lens). The remote is quite busy with multiple buttons, it’s a good thing that it’s backlit, especially when you’ve dimmed the lights to catch the latest episode of Succession.
There’s no smart element baked in to this projector – no Android TV or app ecosystem. I hooked this up to my Apple TV via one of the HDMI ports and didn’t really need the projector remote thereafter. I was unable to hook it up with a soundbar via the Apple TV Bluetooth bridge and relied on the in-built speaker while testing the device. I placed this just behind my sofa and the audio output was just about manageable.
Great picture quality:
Now let’s talk about the biggest purchase driver for a home projector – picture quality. The UHD35+ boasts of a brightness of 4000 lumens and an impressive 1,200,000: 1 contrast. This is a True 4K UHD projector (3840 x 2160 pixels) that delivers vibrant colours. HDR10 and HLG support ensure deep blacks and true to life colours. We checked out varied Content from live sports to HD Content on Netflix and the projector did a great job.
While most buyers are looking at live sporting action or Avengers style blockbusters as key reasons to take the leap to a home projector, there’s another use case scenario that is also driving projector sales – gaming. Our consoles got better last year and now we are also looking for larger screens to express ourselves. This projector is aimed at gaming addicts. It’s an area where the projector triumphs. The 4.2 ms input lag in ‘Enhanced Gaming Mode and a lighting fast 240Hz rate with the 21:9 ultra-wide resolution all come together to create an immersive gaming experience. It’s a key reason to consider this projector aside from the stellar image quality and the ease of installation that all make the Optoma UHD35+ one of the best options at this price point.
What we like: Enhanced gaming mode, picture quality
What can be better: sound quality (built-in speaker), no smart elements built in.
The Optoma UHD35+ costs Rs 2,50,00 /-