November 09, 2010 by Lisa Montgomery
LED (light-emitting diode) light engine technology is gaining momentum as a viable home theater projector technology.
What makes it different than the current crop of the more common DLP and LCD projectors? Helen Anne Travis from projectorpeople.com provides the low-down.
- Better for the environment. The light source (light emitting diodes) used in LED projectors last longer and don’t contain toxic mercury like other types of projectors.
- Easier to Use. LED projectors can power off and on almost instantly. Plus, they don’t require a fan to control their operating temperature.
- Lower Cost of Ownership. Traditional mercury lamps last about 4,000 hours and cost around $400 to replace. LED light sources last more than 10 times longer.
- Lack of Dimming and/or Burnout Over Time. Mercury lamps can grow dimmer over time, losing as much as 50 percent of their brightness after 10,000 hours of use. LEDs don’t suffer from this problem.
- Pricey. Home theater LED projectors cost significantly more than their traditional mercury lamp counterparts, upwards of $15,000. Less expensive LED data projectors are available, but are intended for use in conference rooms. Samsung hopes to drive down the cost, however. Its F10M is the first full-size LED projector that’s bright enough to be used in a home theater setting and sets the bar at $1,099.
- Few Choices. There are more hitting the market for home theater, but most LED projectors are designed for data and business use.
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Lisa Montgomery has been writing about home technology for 15 years, with a focus on the impact of electronics on a modern lifestyle.
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