These Affordable Projectors Will Turn Your Living Room Into A Home Theater

By Emily Estep

If you consume a lot of media — whether it’s movies, video games, or streaming an entire TV series in a single afternoon — investing in one of the best cheap projectors can be a game-changer. For less than $100, a projector can turn any room in your house into a home theater, sans the stick floors and overpriced popcorn.

When you're looking for a projector, the first thing you need to do is consider how and where you plan to use it. The brighter the ambient light in the room is, the higher the lumen output you'll need. If your space is darker, then you can opt for a lower lumen output. Also, unlike more expensive projectors, most cheaper models require another device to stream from, such as a laptop or a smartphone. Be on the lookout for a projector that offers the compatibility you need, and note whether or not it needs an adapter.

Projectors also range in size and weight, making some well-suited to a permanent spot on a sturdy tripod while others can be stashed in your bag and taken from place to place. If you're looking to bring the party with you, you're going to want a projector that doesn't feel like dumbbells in your bag.

Not sure where to begin? These cheap projectors serve various purposes while each one offers big, bright images — without making your wallet cringe.


A Highly-Rated Projector That's Perfect For The Average Room

DBPOWER LCD Mini Projector, $100, Amazon

This projector emits 1,500 lumens, creating clear contrast in an average room, and it can project up to a 176-inch image. With the appropriate cable, you can hook the projector up to your smartphone, PC, or laptop. Plus, it uses an innovative cooling and heat dispersion system to prevent overheating, no matter how long you leave the device on. And with more than 2,100 impressive Amazon reviews, you know this projector is reliable.


A Low Lumen Projector That's Ideal For Dark Rooms And Basements

Dihome Video Projector, $60, Amazon

This LED projector offers low light at 60 lumens — more than enough for a dark basement but not enough to hurt your eyes if you happen to look into the lens. With an HDMI and a USB port, you can hook the projector up to a variety of media, and since it's small enough to fit in your palm, you can easily take it with you anywhere. The projector's LED lamp is designed to shine brightly for more than 50,000 hours, giving this projector a long shelf life.


A High Lumen Projector That's Crystal Clear In Bright Rooms

Joyhero Mini LED Projector, $83, Amazon

This 3-D-compatible LED projector emits beautiful images even in the brightest rooms, with 2,000 lumens. Its high luminosity makes it ideal for playing video games, as it can be connected to an Xbox, PS4, or other gaming system, for big-screen gaming that's super sharp. Its cooling system also keeps the fan from kicking into overdrive and causing too much noise. The projector comes with a variety of cables to hook up various devices.


This Budget-Friendly Mini Projector That You Can Take With You

Artlii Mobile Projector, $46, Amazon

This mobile projector will sync with your smartphone or basically any HDMI device, weighs only about half a pound, and will cost you less than $50, making it the perfect portable projector. It still offers 600 lumens, which will give you clear quality especially in a dark room, and it can project an image up to 60 inches wide. The projector even comes with a power bank, so you won't need a nearby outlet to power it up.

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