This article aims to explain lux vs lumens projectors, what is lux and lumen, the effects of ambient light on the image quality, and how bright your projector needs to be.
Lux vs Lumens Projectors
Lux: Lux also measures brightness in terms of surface area, but it is lumens per square meter in the case of projectors. It refers to the light falling on an area.
Lumens: It is the measurement of the brightness that a projector gives out. It refers to the total light output of the source. ANSI (American national standards units) lumens is the formal term of lumens in the industry.
How to convert lux to lumens: 1 lumen per square meter = 1 lux. This is equivalent to 0.0929 lumens per square foot = 1 lux.
In which area lux is more useful: Lux is more useful in the film and video business. For a lux unit, distance is the key like 2100lux/1m or 3ft. without that distance, lux is useless.
The farther you get away from the light, the lower the light level goes.
So if your projector is listed as lux, you need to know what distance that measurement was taken from, otherwise, it is meaningless. While you are at it, why not learn about how to choose projector lumens for a home theater.
We don’t recommend you consider lux for projectors because it is variable with distance. It is not the right unit to make a purchasing decision. The different units of brightness are further explained in this BenQ guide.
What are lumens in a projector?
In terms of a projector, it is the measurement of the brightness that a projector releases.Â These lumens can vary from projector to projector (LED, Laser, and Lamp).
Suppose a projector like Epson 5050UB whose lumen output is around 2600 lumens. If you want to measure its true lumen output, you would need to project a full white image over a screen. Light is evenly distributed over an entire screen.
Only experts like us test such things because we have to properly review such projectors. For consumers, the lumen output mentioned in the specifications is mostly correct, or you can read expert reviews for accurate information.
You just stay away from the lux because it depends on the distance.
How many lux/lumens should a projector have?
Since we have already stated that lux is not a suitable unit for projectors, we will concentrate on lumens.
The amount of light provided by any projector determines the size and visibility of the image.
That largely depends on the type of content you are watching, the room you are in, environment, type of projector, and ambient light, but we will roughly list the number of lumens you would need for a projector.
- For business: 2000 – 3000 lumen output is preferred because presentations and orientations for business purposes mostly take place in areas where ambient light is dominant. You would need a brighter picture.
- For home theater: 1500 to 2000 lumens is acceptable if your room is a dim home theater (bat cave) where no ambient light can penetrate.
- For gaming: 1500 to 2300 lumens are acceptable for gaming in a home theater condition, but you would need more if you are playing in a living room.
Other factors like contrast, white brightness, saturation, black details, shadow details, and color details are also a factor, but roughly you need would above-mentioned lumen output for gaming, business, and movies.
Why do we consider lumens instead of lux for a projector
It is not even a right comparison. We don’t consider lux for projectors as we have already mentioned that it depends on the distance.
Lumens on the other hand is the standard and most popular unit of projectors. All the brands mentioned lumen as the light source whether color brightness or white brightness.
Which is better: Lumen or Lux?
Lux depends on the number of lumens and size of the screen that is why we focus on lumens instead of lux. In the case of lumens, you know what size of screen you want to use.
You can compare the relative brightness of several projectors before making a purchasing decision.
Lux and lumens are two different units and comparing them in terms of projectors are useless.Â Lumens is the correct unit for projectors and you should it in mind before making a purchasing decision.