The best 4K projector matches the march of progress in visual fedlity: 4K is no longer a luxury for the discerning home cinephile. It has truly replaced HD as the standard for image quality and the best 4K projectors will get you there with a bang.
The advent of the PS5 and Xbox Series X in late 2020 was, as next-gen launches tend to be, a turning point in resolution, framerates, and visual clarity. Just as Playstation 3 helped BluRay become the standard, 4K devices have now reached even more homes and we really are in the era of 4K.
As progress goes on, the price of tech lowers and this is the same when it comes to those vying for the title of best 4K projector. Just a few years ago the best 4K projectors were financially out of reach for almost all home cinema lovers. And while you’re still going to need four figures to get most of the contenders for best 4K projector into your home, there are now great options at the lower end of this market – as well as the truly exceptional and ‘genuine’ best 4K projectors at or above the several thousand dollar or pound mark. Those at the lower end will still give the best gaming TVs a run for their money offering 4K-quality images, but are not native 4K, utilising pixel-shifting technology to give ultra-HD quality images.
What Are the Best 4K Projectors?
There are many factors to think about when choosing the best 4K projector for you; below are the most important ones, which we considered while we were researching this list.
As the name suggests, the best 4K projectors display 4K content with better clarity, contrasts and detail than HD projectors. Images are sharper and more vivid, with the projectors capable of reproducing more shades and tones along the color gamut. The best 4K projectors also feature powerful processors that faithfully reproduce the source material the way it was created, letting you see a show or film the way the creator intended, with more accurate and life-like images.
The newest 4K projectors are packed with performance-minded upgrades, like different viewing modes that enhance and adapt images based on what you’re watching (say, fast-moving sports versus a nature documentary), HDR capabilities, and new technologies that help eliminate banding, blocking, and the dreaded “rainbow effect.”
Designed for indoor and outdoor use, these projectors also offer adjustable brightness settings and enhanced tone mapping in the dark, so you always get a clear picture no matter the time of day — or where you’re sitting in the room. Whites are bright without being blurry, and darks are crisp and clean, without blending into the background.
The best 4K projectors are great for gaming too, especially where players need to see and discern every last detail. By casting a larger screen, a projector provides a larger, more immersive viewing area for gamers to make their moves.
Keep in mind, a 4K projector will only display content in 4K if that’s how the source material was created. Still, everything from the Super Bowl to The Simpsons airs in 4K these days, so this is a home entertainment component worth picking up.
We’ve found 4K projectors that can throw a screen size up to 300 inches. You’ll want to start by casting a smaller screen (around 100 inches), as the picture quality may change the more you extend the projection.
Our Top Picks
If you’re ready to take your home theater to the next level, here are the best projectors you can get for 4K content.
1. Epson Home Cinema 5050UB
The Epson Home Cinema 5050UB is the best all-around 4K projector because it has the perfect balance between image quality and price. An excellent contrast ratio, paired with impressive brightness and accurate color, all with better detail than what’s possible with a 1080p projector, and you’ve got all the pieces for a fantastic image.
This UHD projector is not cheap, but offers a significant step up in image quality over other 4K projectors. Extensive lens shift and a motorized zoom are the icing on the cake.
- Excellent color reproduction
- Motorized lens controls are handy
- Blacks could be deeper
- Motion not its strong point
2. XGIMI Halo
The XGIMI Halo is a great shout for anyone after a portable projector that doesn’t give up on quality pictures entirely. This stylish, compact, and capable projector is easy to take with you on the go, with built-in 5W speakers and 1080p / Full HD resolution to offer both sight and sound.
You’re getting 800 lumens max brightness while plugged in, though this does drop to 600 lumens when running on battery – fine for dark, outdoor settings, though you’ll undoubtedly fare better with the former setting. Regardless, the battery life is long enough to watch an average-length movie. There’s no native Netflix support, sadly – something that also plagues the XGIMI Horizon Pro – but complaints are few and far between for the Halo.
It’s worth noting that theater enthusiasts may not be satisfied with the brightness and picture of the Halo, especially because of somewhat distracting video noise in dark scenes – but for anyone who needs flexibility and wants the best projector that can fit that need, the XGIMI Halo will prove a worthy choice.
- Bright pictures, even on battery
- Great portability
- Video noise in dark scenes
- Aggressive autofocus
3. JVC DLA-N5
JVC’s D-ILA devices are some of the best home cinema projectors in the business. They offer exceptionally good contrast handling, effortless smooth colour blending and the best black levels around. The N5 may be the baby of this famed native 4K family but it’s still an absolute belter.
Its bigger, pricier siblings are better and blacker but there’s easily enough shading skill and depth of darkness even here to produce an incredibly involving and three-dimensional feel whether at 4K or Full HD. What’s more, JVCs ongoing upgrades to its HDR capabilities just make that picture better and better as time goes on.
The motorised lens, simple menu system and excellent choice of usable preset picture modes make it surprisingly easy to set up. It might not compete with the others here for value but it’s the best performing projector on this list.
- Deep blacks
- Excellent HDR handling
- Brilliant colour control
- Add-on required for 3D
- No full-screen SD upscaling
4. Sony VPL-VW290ES
This is Sony’s replacement for the excellent VW270ES. Now armed with the X1 for Projector picture processor, and features like Super Resolution Reality Creation and Dynamic HDR Enhancer, it resets the standard for the entry-level native 4K projector.
Like the rest of the native 4K Sony series, the 290ES uses Sony’s SXRD, 4096 x 2160 resolution, D-ILA panels which combine the best of LCD and DLP technology. The results in this case are sharp picture which draws an excellent balance between HDR punch and tonal details.
As with most native 4K machines, there’s no Dolby Vision support, but Sony’s own dynamic HDR technology can still provide a frame-by-frame HDR analysis for the best possible picture at all times.
Even with SDR material, the results are quite astonishing. There’s little want for detail when upscaling from HD and there are bags of carefully shaded nuance with both contrast and colour. The only thing that stands in its way is that the even better JVC DLA-N5 isn’t a whole lot more expensive.
- Glossy HDR picture
- Excellent HD upscaling
- Insightful, cinematic image
- Nothing at this price
5. BenQ W2700
Projectors typically aren’t very good at reproducing HDR content due to their limited black and brightness levels. However, what this projector does well is recreating colours at close to HDR levels. Indeed, if you feed it a 4K Blu-ray, it will lap it up and project an image that’s as close to a movie screen in your own home as anything this side of five grand.
It may not be the brightest projector around with a peak of only 2,000 ANSI lumens, but it has a short throw lens that allows it to create a large display from relatively close up. It also has all the connectivity you need without any frivolous extras, plus adjusting the image to suit your screen and room setup is a doddle thanks to zoom and vertical lens shift capabilities.
Quite simply, the BenQ W2700 is a stunning projector. If you’re looking to recreate a movie theatre vibe in your living room and don’t have many thousands to spend, this is a very good place to start.
- Motorised and adaptable lens
- Handles HDR well
- Vibrant colours
- Excellent sense of depth
- Noisy at full power
6. Optoma UHD60 Projector
Even though the UHD60 may not have all the bells and whistles of super high-end projectors, it’s able to pack in most of what we love all while coming in at around $1,600 at the time of this review. This is definitely one of the best home theater projectors on our list.
The Optoma UHD60 packs in all the features you could want out of a 4K projector. This 4K ultra HD projector features an awesome 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, which keeps bright scenes clear and dark scenes detailed, all while boasting an impressive 3000 lumen brightness rating. This is plenty of brightness for both dark and light viewing environments, which ensures you’ll have the best experience no matter what time of day it is. Set this projector up in your living room, or set it up in your bedroom. Either way, you’ll have a high-quality image.
For these reasons and so many more, we’re naming this our best 4K projector of 2022. Your living room will rival any movie theater in no time.
- Super bright picture/3000 lumens
- Native 4K resolution
- Quiet operation
- Struggles with HDR image quality
- Input lag is high
- Top panel isn’t very durable
7. ViewSonic PX747-4K 4K Projector
All that aside, when you consider it’s sub-$1000 price tag, it’s easy to forgive those slight missteps to make this the best budget 4K projector you’ll find on shelves. The ViewSonic projector is the perfect entry point for the budding 4K projector enthusiast on a budget. This could also make a fairly good portable projector as well.
Sure, the ViewSonic may not have the best contrast ratios or deepest blacks, but when you consider the price all those minor sins are easily forgiven. This ultra high definition projector is a solid all-arounder for the beginner in 4K projection, someone who isn’t sure that they’re ready to drop an arm and a leg but still want to become a part of the 4K projector elite.
- Super affordable price
- 3500 lumen rating
- HDR support
- Contrast ratios could be better
- Out of box color may need some tweaking
8. Epson Home Cinema 3800
Launched in September 2021, this is a great projector that makes Epson very competitive at this end of the best 4K projector market. But it gives a great picture which belies the price. Colours are impressive for wide landscapes or close-ups of faces, and although there are some of the problems with blacks lacking depths which projectors often suffer from you’d have to be quite pernickety to spot it.
While there aren’t any frame interpolation options on 4K-level settings, motion blur is low and action remains smooth. Even when switched to the 1080p modes there’s a fantastic picture, plus many extra settings to reduce any blur even further at this resolution.
The option of Bluetooth audio output means you don’t need to have quite so many wires trailing across the room if you’ve run a soundbar under the projected image. However, there are some practical niggles: the onboard controls are a little cluttered; and the dials for lens shift are a slightly strange way to employ this feature. But once you’ve set it up and you’re staring at the beautiful image these minor issues will be quickly forgotten.
- Great 4K picture at a mid-range price point
- Bluetooth connectivity for audio output
- No 4K motion processing settings
- Chunky, cluttered look
9. LG HU70LS CINEBEAM
LG’s lightweight Cinebeam 4K projector is an elegantly designed projector with a higher than average IQ, courtesy of LG’s webOS smart platform.
Connections comprise two HDMI v2.0 inputs, plus twin USB ports, a digital audio optical output and headphone jack. Ethernet is available, an alternative to on-board Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
The model will suit most living rooms and dens. To cast a 100-inch image, you’ll need around three metres from lens to screen. Brightness is rated at 1,500 ANSI lumens, and there’s compatibility with HDR.
When it comes to motion handling, LG’s TruMotion interpolation does a suitably smooth job. It’s. It’s useful for sports, but for movies we’d recommend turning it off. Operating noise is relatively high at around 30dB.
Ease of use is class leading, though. The remote control is an all-white version of the Magic Remote, familiar from LG’s smart TVs. It comes with dedicated buttons for Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.
- One-box, truly portable system
- Impressive 4K HDR picture
- Easy to build a system around
- Lacks a little detail
- Motion could be better
- Built-in speakers only adequate
10. Nebula Capsule
Don’t be put off by the star rating: this tiny, tin-shaped projector has a big picture and bigger ambitions. It’s an ingenious piece of tech – a portable projector with built-in Android-esque app store. The Capsule can also be used as a dedicated Bluetooth speaker.
Whether streaming from Netflix, Amazon Prime or YouTube, the Capsule presents a decent picture that rivals other pico projectors. It’s not perfect, but those looking for something a little bit different, portable and easy to use, and who don’t mind missing out in absolute picture quality terms, will enjoy it very much.
- Neat design
- Solid sound
- Passable pictures
- Doesn’t like dark scenes or lit rooms
- Needs fuller range of apps
- Short of connections
How many resolutions is 4K?
The symbol K stands for ‘kilo,’ meaning a ‘4k’ means ‘4 kilos’. Therefore, the 4k implies that the device screen has a horizontal resolution of about 4000 pixels. A 4k screen display features 3840 x 2160 pixels. And this is exactly 4 times the pixels of a Full HD display with 1920 x 2160 pixels.
Is 4K 4000 Pixels Per Inch?
Certainly yes, 4k refers to horizontal pixels proximity or around 4000. But of course, you should know there are two standard 4k resolutions. The big difference between UHD 4K and DCI 4K is that DCI 4k has 4096 x 2160/17:9 pixels, translating to twice the projectors’ standard 2048 x 1080 pixels resolutions. Moreover, while the film industry uses DCI 4k resolutions, the TV industry utilizes 3840 x2160/16:9) which is also twice the horizontal resolutions of 1920 x 1080 pixel full HD.
Are 4K Projectors Any Good?
Sincerely speaking, 4k projectors are worth in every sense. They create a high-quality, detailed image with vibrant colors. The 4k projectors form perfect video and image sharpness, bringing a real cinematic experience to your home. Above, all the 4k projectors are becoming affordable each day.