Thursday, March 20, 2008

What is a Lumen?

In layman's terms, Lumens are the unit by which we measure how much light a projector puts out. This is important to know because when you are looking into buying or renting a projector, you need to make sure the projector you get is strong enough for the lightning conditions, the size of your audience, and the size of the room you are using it in. The larger your room or venue or the brighter your venue, the more bulb strength you will need.

Projector strength starts as low as 650 lumens and ranges as high as 10,000+. The biggest consideration you should be making, other than price, is your need for projector strength versus the portability of the projector. Generally, speakers prefer to make presentations in rooms with as much ambient light as possible, making some low-strength projectors unsuitable for the occasion. However, as a rule of thumb, the more powerful the projector the less portable it becomes.

Projector Strength Guide:


  • 650 - 1,000 lumens: suitable for presentations with low ambient light.

  • 1,000 - 2,000 lumens: the most common type of projector on the market today. Suitable for situations with some ambient light.

  • 2,000 - 4,000 lumens: smaller models in the professional projector class. Suitable for audiences of up to 100 people.

  • 4,000 - 6,000 lumens: mid-range professional models suitable for usage with audiences greater than 100 people.

  • 6,000 - 10,000 lumens: high end projectors suitable for large venues such as conventions or conferences where thousands of people need to see it at the same time.

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