A projector is a wonderful invention. It’s been around since ancient times when it was known as the magic lantern. Technology has progressed significantly since then, thus making way for the overhead and slide projector of the 1950s and 1960s to the digital video projectors of the 1980s to 1990s.
At present, we’re experiencing the consumer-grade HD video projector revolution that’s even overtaking business projectors used for presentation purposes. With that in mind, how energy efficient is a projector anyways?
Do projectors use a lot of electricity? How much electricity does it use up?
Does a Projector Use a Lot of Electricity?
On average, a whole range of different projectors can use up somewhere between 150 watts to 800 watts an hour. The most affordable and basic projector uses up to 300 watts on average. This is $0.03 or 3 cents per hour.
If you’re using an Ultra HD triple-laser lamp projector, you can go up to 800 watts or more, which translates to $0.08 or 8 cents per hour. The more a projector is used the more electricity it will use up. It’s not exactly as power-hungry as an A/C unit but it’ll cost you more than an HDTV.
There are other costs linked to using this device. The more you run the projector the more likely you’ll replace its lamp or the more likely you’ll have to replace the device itself depending on whether you’re using a standard lamp, LED lamp, or laser lamp.
Is a Projector More Cost-Effective Than an HDTV?
On the other hand, a projector can also be more cost-effective in terms of how you have to limit the amount of time you have it turned on to keep it from breaking down early. As the screen gets bigger the more cost-effective a projector gets.
A similarly sized TV screen that’s about 100 inches or so will use up more energy than a projector that merely projects a 1080p Full HD or 4K Ultra HD projection that’s about 100 inches or so. As long as you don’t run the projector rugged or make it overheat, it’s inch-for-inch more cost-effective than an HDTV.
Black & white TVs of yore used up less energy and lasted longer than film projectors. Color CRT TVs did the same when digital video projectors came about. HDTVs continue this legacy of economical use of electricity in the advent of 4K laser projectors as well.
How Does a Projector’s Electricity Consumption Compare to an HDTV?
In many cases, the electricity level used by both the projector and an HDTV is similar. So how does a projector cost you more than an HDTV? Many LCDs and DLPs can only work for so long before breaking down due to overheating and the like. You’re not supposed to keep your projector open all-day.
An HDTV, like a CRT TV, can be left open for a lengthy period of time and won’t break down. A projector could and its lamp life is limited by several thousand hours. It could last 3 years or 10 years depending on the lamp, but not while operating as heavily as a normal TV.
HDTVs with projector-tier screen sizes are much more expensive than simply availing of an HDTV. A smaller TV only uses up to 66 watts per hour versus the 300 watts per hour of the average basic projector.
See more this post: Projector vs. TV Power Consumption: Which Consumes More Power?
What’s the Electricity Consumption of an HDTV vs. a Projector?
An LED, LCD, or plasma flatscreen TV has varying electricity consumption ranges depending on size, make, and model. Smaller-sized or laptop-sized screens are more energy-efficient and can be used for prolonged periods of time, like HDTVs put on the waiting rooms of hospitals.
Nevertheless, size-wise a projector at 300 watts is more energy-efficient than an HDTV with the same screen size. Furthermore, projectors are designed to be used occasionally to view films from time to time at a limit of 8 hours per day if you could help it.
How Do Projectors Use Electricity When Compared to HDTVs?
LED TVs use electricity quite differently from a projector. LED, plasma, and LCD flatscreen HDTVs vary the amount of power used depending on the type of image they’re showcasing. TVs use less power compared to projectors not only due to their smaller screen size but also how they operate.
TVs use less energy when the image is more saturated, black, and lacking of color. If the video features color-rich scenes and bright displays, more energy is used up. In contrast, regardless of the image being a projector, projectors use the same amount of electricity.
LED TV electricity usage is hard to predict exactly because of this tendency.
How Can You Reduce the Amount of Electricity a Projector Uses?
If you’re worried about racking up a higher electricity bill with your projector use, here are a few techniques you can use for the sake of cost reduction and energy economy.
An energy-efficient projector has things like eco mode or auto turn off when idle like in many other monitors out there. It doesn’t have a screensaver mode because screen burn isn’t an issue with a projected image when compared to a CRT monitor or even an LCD/LED screen.
Optimal Viewing Settings
Check the settings of the image and conserve energy by lowering the brightness, using saturation settings to make the image grayer, or taking note of your minutes or hours of usage on the lamp to conserve not only electricity but the lifespan of your projector light.
Some devices even have auto shut-off when it’s about to overheat or if it reaches a certain temperature, which saves you electricity and reduces the risk of overheating.
Rationing Out Usage
Abstinence or controlling your usage of the projector to every weekend, every special event, or every-once-in-a-while instead of testing the limits of the device during this pandemic and rampant lockdowns is the way to go.
This ensures you won’t put extra strain on your projector from simple overuse.
Never Forget the Following
An HDTV is more energy efficient due to its ability to work longer hours than a projector that overheats. Size-wise, a projector consumes less electricity than an HDTV with a similar screen size. However, price-wise, a smaller HDTV consumes less than a similarly priced projector.
A projector will always give you more bang for your buck or more inches for your cents but longevity, eco mode, and overheating prevention make HDTVs cheaper by the dozen in terms of performance.