In recent years, so-called short-throw or ultra-short-throw projectors have gradually arrived on the home cinema system market, generally compact equipment intended for users who above all seek ease of use and placement.

Most of the brands that have one of these devices in their catalog promise spectacular results with an excellent picture and even advanced functions, sound systems and everything that a traditional projector cannot do. But is this really the case? We will go over the main advantages and disadvantages of these teams.

Short throw projectors: advantages

The purpose of short-throw projectors is to be able to generate a large diagonal image by being located very close or even glued (in the case of ultrashort-throw projectors) to the wall or to the surface where the image will be projected. . This is its main advantage but also, as we will see later, one of its drawbacks.

Second, while it shouldn’t be, brands have chosen to offer more additional features in most models outside of the projector itself. For example, it is common to find integrated sound systems, smart TV platforms to be able to use it as if it were a TV, WiFi connectivity, Bluetooth, Ethernet, integrated media player, possibility of install apps and games, etc.

All of these functions mean that we are faced with compact equipment that integrates everything needed to reproduce our content, allowing us to transport it from here to there, change it from room to room with relative ease and use it in any location. different rooms in the house.

In addition, these devices have in some cases jumped a generation in terms of lighting system, since in many models they have chosen to integrate LED lamps or even laser systems that offer more light output, greater stability. and less wear and tear over time as well as durability that typically exceeds 20,000 hours, well above the 3,000 or 4,000 hours of a conventional model.

Short throw projectors: disadvantages

Everything looks wonderful, but the downsides of these devices are still there and they are quite considerable. To begin with, we have the issue of the small margin to place the material. The integrated optics, unlike LCD projectors (and to a lesser extent DLP), makes it difficult to change the position of the projector.

No suele haber zoom ni movimiento vertical u horizontal de la óptica, a diferencia de los proyectores tradicionales con potentes ópticas con aumentos de hasta 2X y desplazamientos de gran porcentaje, y los que se integran son muy escasos dando la opción solo de variar ligeramente la posición Team. That is, if we can put it in the right place in the room that is fine, if we cannot we will probably have little room to correct.

Another problem is the inability to place a center speaker in the home theater system, especially with ultrashort models that mount to the wall. Where can we install the center speaker? If you put it on the projector it will probably interfere with the light emission and below, for example on the floor, it is too far from the screen and the soundstage gets worse.

Some of you will tell me that a built-in speaker or sound system is included in many of these projectors for this. Well yes, but in general they are of very poor quality or at least not enough to replace a good center speaker and a pair of companions on the front. Rather, they are auxiliary systems for testing or in case we always take the projector from here to there, but not for a fixed home theater set.

We also have the noise problem. Short throw projectors produce operating noise similar to that of conventional equipment. However, given their raison d’être, it is customary for them to be closer to the viewer a few meters or even less, which can make the sound more audible and can be more annoying than a model we have at 3. or 4 meters from us.

So are they worth it? Well, it depends on what we are looking for and especially the possibilities of our room. If we have a room (it does not need to be dedicated) for home cinema with dimensions that allow us to place a classic projector with a range of between 3 and 6 meters, we will probably get a better result with a better control of image geometry, better adjustment and less background noise. If, on the contrary, the length of the piece does not give more of its own, then the short or ultrashort throw will be our best option.