Q. I’ve always wanted a Home Theater with the classic projector and big screen that looks like a movie theater. But I have also always wondered if the projector picture is all that good? How would you compare it to a big-screen regular TV? — Carlo, Buffalo, New York. 

Carlo, I used a Sony 1080p projector in an Home Theater for eight years, and I was very happy with its performance. (I recently sold the house, boo-hoo, and I still miss my Home Theater!)

The picture was just as sharp as any non-projector TV I’ve ever own (except, maybe, my 55-inch LG OLED TV.) — and nothing beats watching your favorite movie or sports team on a 100-inch wall screen

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However, there are few things to keep in mind when buying a ‘Home Theater’ projector.

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One, you want to make sure the projector will be in a room that is completely dark or very close to completely dark. You’ll find that the picture on most projectors will look washed out if there’s even moderate light in the room.

That doesn’t mean the room can’t have windows — you can use blackout curtains to keep the light out if necessary.

Two, the Home Theater projector comes with a lamp which can last somewhere between 2,00 and 4,000 hours of viewing. Once the lamp goes out, you will have to replace it and that can cost $200-400. (Don’t panic. 2,000-4,000 hours is more than you think; I didn’t have to replace my projector’s initial lamp for six years.)

Also, once the lamp begins to reach its maximum number of hours, you’ll find that the brightness will start to decline a bit.

Other than two cautionary notes, I would highly recommend buying a projector for your Home Theater.

Happy Viewing!

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