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How Many Lumens are Needed for an Outdoor Projector?

Outdoor projectors are becoming increasingly popular by the passing day. People are leaning towards their us, for both recreational as well as commercial purposes. People in their backyards are increasingly using outdoor projectors.

Invite a couple of friends over, get your projector ready, pop some popcorn, and watch something in the comfort of your backyard. Outdoor projectors are easily mobile and can be moved under the starry sky upon will with ease. Outdoor projectors can even be taken on camping trips to increase the fun and have memorable late-night movie views.

Things to take care of

When using an outdoor projector, there are a few things that need to be taken care of. One of the main things is the level of brightness. An outdoor projector will never properly work if it is displayed under the sun.

The reason for this is that there is no projector that is brighter than the sun. If you are going to use a projector, make sure that you do it after the sun has set. Another extremely tricky part that you need to take care of while using an outdoor projector is the number of lumens.

How Many Lumens Do I Need for a Projector?

Every novice that ventures into the world of backyard movie screening by the use of outdoor projectors has heard the mention of lumens. Lumens have a significant effect on the quality of your image.

They have a direct correlation with the brightness and clarity of the display of your outdoor projector. It is directly correlative with the quality of your image because it is the light emitted by your outdoor projector.

It is the brightness of your projector. A brighter image will, consequently be a clearer image. When you are projecting an image outdoors, brightness levels play a great role in your final image quality.

The natural light outside also interferes with the brightness of the projector. This is the reason why it is suggested that an outdoor projector should always be operated in the dark so that the image can be clear.

While opting for outdoor projection, the image quality should be your top priority. You do not want your image to be distorted, blurred, or dark. Hence a projector with the maximum number of lumens should be chosen.

The more the number of lumens, the brighter will be the image. The brighter the image, the clearer the view. Although the prices of the projectors increase with the increase in the number of lumens, a person should always opt for the maximum number of lumens within their price ranges.

Why should you have a greater number of lumens?

If the lumen number is not comparable with the size of your screen, your image will be dark. This will result in you having to rush around and turn off all the lights in the surrounding.

Not only will it be a waste of time, but the image would still not look as good. The number of lumens in your screen should be comparable with the size of your screen because the image will be brighter and clearer.

Furthermore, if you completely darken the place where you are screening the movie, there is a lot of chance that your guests will bump into items as they walk around.

It is recommended that you do not darken your surroundings completely but keep a few lights on and buy an outdoor projector that has enough intrinsic brightness that you would not need to turn off all the lights around you.

How Many Lumens Do I Need?

The quality of the image is significantly affected by the number of lumens. A general relationship between the number of lumens and the size of the screen is followed, and it is given below:

  • For a screen of 100 inches (give or take) your lumen count should be between 1500 ANSI lumens and 2300 ANSI lumens to get a good image.
  • 3000 ANSI lumens to 4000 ANSI lumens are required for a screen of 200 inches.
  • A massive screen of 300 inches would require a higher lumen count of 5000 to 10,000 ANSI lumens to have a crisp and bright image.
  • If your targeted screen is of 400 inches or more, then an outdoor projector with a lumen count of 12000 ANSI lumens or more would be appropriate.

Other factors

The most important question you need to ask yourself when you are projecting a movie using an outdoor projector is whether or not you are pleased with the picture or image.

The lumen number is not the only factor which affects the quality of the image. There are other factors that affect the quality of the image. The material of the screen in one of the prevalent factors that influence the image quality.

The screen should be completely clean and spotless. Furthermore, it should either be white or extremely light-colored. The more colored the screen becomes, the worse the image quality gets.

The number of light sources present in the ambiance also matters to a great extent, especially if you have a projector with a low lumen number.

The number of light sources should be kept as minimal as possible so that the image remains bright as easily visible. The age of your projector lamp or bulb also matters.

The newer the bulb, the crisper the image. Projector bulbs can also be replaced after regular intervals of time to keep the image crisp and of good quality.

There are also settings on the outdoor projector that needs to be taken care of. You need to make sure that your projector is properly set to get the best image.


The lumen count is usually specified on the packaging of an outdoor projector. Always make sure that you check the specifications of a projector before you decide to buy it. Also, check the image result of an outdoor projector and gauge if your image is bright and satisfactory enough.

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