Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Dell M109S Pocket Projector

Dell M109S Projector
Palm projectors have been seen on the net for a while now, but Dell is the first to offer a pocket projector to the mass market. The Dell M109S projector is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand (3.64” x 4.12” x 1.46”). The specs are nothing spectacular with a brightness of 55 lumens, resolution of 858x600 and a throw distance of 8 feet, but who cares when the projector is smaller than my hand. The main selling point on M109S is that it is tiny and has a weight of only .8 pounds and lets not forget the price either. With a pricetag of only $500 this is one gadget that will be on many tech enthusiasts holiday shopping list.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

What is a long throw Lens?

long throw lenseA long throw lens is a special type of lens that allows a projector to be placed farther back without stretching out the screen as far as a normal lens would. Long throw lenses are usually external lenses that are mounted on in front of the normal lens, like a pair of glasses. Some projectors will come stock with a long throw lens, but this is very rare and are often from name brands you cannot trust. Typically you can find a long throw lens from any where from $1000 for a very cheap one to all the way up to $5000 for a high quality lens for very long distances.

A long throw lens is typically used in a larger facility like a church. A church for example would not want a bulky projector in the middle of the church, but would rather have it placed in the back of the church where it is far out of site. Also University lecture halls, reception halls, and convention centers are often a common place for long throw lens due to the buildings large size. Another common place you might see a long throw lens is a school auditorium. If you have ever looked at the very back top corner of a school auditorium there is usually a sound and video box where a projector is placed. Now think of how big that projectors screen would be if it did not use a long throw lens, so in most cases like this a long throw lens a must have.

One last reminder when planning your budget and seeing how much money you want to spend. Consider whether or not you want a long throw lens.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

What to Look for in a Projector Screen

Projector ScreensAs projectors grow in popularity for home theater use, many people are deciding to get their money's worth and are completing the home theater package by buying projector screens. But just like projectors, projector screens vary from model to model and some of these differences shouldn't be ignored.

Like most products for sale, there are cheap, inexpensive options as well as higher priced, more expensive projector screens. The most glaring differences between the two being the quality of the material used in manufacturing and the quality of construction by the manufacturer. For fixed frame screens spending the extra cash usually translates to a more durable and taut screen. For screens built with extra sturdiness this means the screen will retain its shape longer, and will not warp from being held taught. Screens that are built with less sturdy material will often begin to lose shape over time and the screen material will become loose as it stretches which will result in a distorted image.

Velvet borders are also common in projector screens as they prevent light leaks off the side of the screen and provide the screen with a more finished look. As price goes up with a screen usually the quality and durability of the fabric used increases with it. Another fact to note is that many of the cheaper projector screen options are often manufactured outside of the United States. Draper and Da-Lite are two popular screen makers who offer tremendous products.

For those of you wondering just how much many projector screens are expected to cost, here is a general price breakdown for a few of the most popular screen options.

* Gallon of Matte White Paint: $20
* Screen Material (DIY screens): $12 per square foot ($300 for a 92-inch screen)
* Low cost Fixed or Pull Down Screen: $149 - $799
* Fixed Screen with Border: $549 - $2,199 (Draper Onyx)
* Electric Screen: $799 and up.

Source: Projector People