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How Do I Choose the Best Digital Projector Lamp?

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  • Written By: Jeremy Laukkonen
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 20 September 2016
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There are various factors to consider when choosing a digital projector lamp. If you have not yet purchased a digital projector, then you may make your choice based partly on the lamp. In this case, you will want to look for a digital projector lamp that offers sufficient brightness for your purposes and a long service life. If you already have a digital projector and the lamp has burned out, then you have fewer choices. Each model of digital projector requires a specific lamp replacement, so your choices will typically be limited to finding the manufacturer or supplier with the best price and half-life rating.

Digital projectors can use a number of different technologies, though they all require light bulbs to operate. These lamps are highly specialized for use in digital projectors, so they can be very expensive to replace in comparison to other light bulbs. When looking for a new digital projector, you may want to take this into consideration. You will want to look for a unit that has a digital projector lamp capable of sufficient light output for your viewing needs. It can also be a good idea to check the service life rating on the bulb before purchasing a projector because frequent replacements can add to the total cost of buying and operating these devices.

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If you already own a digital projector and the bulb has burned out, your choices are limited by the manufacturer specifications. Digital projectors each have specific bulb requirements, which are often listed in an owner's manual or other literature. Each manufacturer typically also offers replacement bulbs, so that can sometimes be the easiest option. Many aftermarket companies also make digital projector lamps to the same specifications, which may be a cheaper option.

Each digital projector lamp has a service life rating in addition to its other specifications. The service life rating is a factor that can vary between one lamp and another that can both fit in the same device. This rating is usually given in a number of hours that represents the half-life of the bulb, or the amount of usage time it will take the lamp to only be half as bright as it originally was. In order to find the best replacement digital projector lamp, it can be helpful to compare this half-life to the cost of the bulb to determine the best value.

The other option you typically have when choosing a replacement digital projector lamp is whether to purchase a bare lamp or a complete unit. Instead of installing a lamp directly into a projector, many designs make use of a cage. The lamp is installed into the cage, and the complete unit is then slid into the projector. Purchasing a bare lamp and then installing it into your old cage is typically less expensive, though it involves a little more work than buying a complete unit.

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