The Best 4K Projectors for 2021

If you’re in the market for a 4K Projector and you’d like some recommendations for the best 4K movie projectors for different situations, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, I’ll give you our top picks for the best 4K projectors in SIX different categories – including those focused looking for home theater projectors, gaming projectors, smart-projectors, short throw projectors, portable projectors, and our top picks overall – ALL of them 4K models that are sure to give you the ultimate 4K projector experience!

When it comes to 4K projectors, the primary names to know are BenQ, Epson, Optoma, and Sony – these brands will generally have something great for most people. That said, we’ll also be examining a few other 4k projectors from the likes of LG, VAVA, and AAXA for those customers with specific needs (short-throw, portability, smart features, and the budget category). If you’re really serious about finding the best 4K projector for YOUR needs – you’re sure to find it on this page.


Best 4K Projectors – Summary


Best 4K Projector Overall

There are two 4K projectors that we believe are the “Best Overall” – they are the BENQ HT3550 and the EPSON 5050UB. Before we showcase them to you, it’s important to understand HOW we decided what makes a 4K projector the ‘best overall.” In order to earn this rating from us, we require the 4K Projector to have ALL of the following:

  1. It’s made by a company that is well-known for projectors;
  2. It has all of the top features expected by shoppers (true 4K resolution, ultra high contrast ratio, super bright lumens, etc);
  3. It has quality warranty;
  4. It has 100’s of consumer ratings that have at least 85% 4-star or above ratings;
  5. It has to be affordable to the majority of shoppers in this class;

There may be some 4K projectors that have better ‘specs’ than the two 4k projectors we chose for our “Best Overall” rating (especially those in the ‘High End Home Theater” Category) and while those 4K projectors may be technically superior to the two projectors we chose for our top rating, those ‘higher spec’ projectors (while awesome!) just didn’t have enough consumer reviews to back them up and/or they were simply too expensive for most consumers to afford. When you parse out ALL the data, we belive the BENQ HT3550 and the EPSON 5050UB offer the best value for the money and thus they have earned our “Best Overall” Ratings!

#2 Overall – BenQ HT3550

The BenQ HT3550 is our runner-up pick for the Best Overall 4K Projector for most consumers. It’s a fantastic 4K projector and it’s available at a great price for all that it offers.

  • TRUE 4K PROJECTOR: 3840 x 2160 resolution consisting of 8.3 million pixels that provide amazing clarity and crisply defined fine details while gaming or watching movies.
  • SUPER CLARITY: Contrast Ratio of 30,000:1 and 2000 Lumens delivers true blacks and amazing pictures.
  • FLEXIBILITY: vertical lens shift and short throw with 1. 3x big zoom lens enable use in smaller spaces.
  • CONNECTIVITY: 2.5A USB port, USB3.0, two HDMI ports, and optical SPDIF ports.
  • INDUSTRY LEADING WARRANTY: BenQ’s 3-year warranty.
  • DLP TECHNOLOGY: DLP is used in 90% of the world’s cinemas and 100% of digital IMAX theaters.

#1 Overall – EPSON 5050UB

If you want a 4K projector that ticks all the boxes and provides the perfect confluence of price-to-value, you can do no better than the Epson Home Cinema 5050UB 4K PRO-UHD 3-Chip Projector. Don’t just take my word for it – on nearly every review site you find this projector on, you’ll see it almost exclusively rated with 5-stars. On Amazon alone, it’s got 100’s of reviews and over 85% are 5-star ratings – that’s the most consistent of any projector on this page!

  • TRUE 3 CHIP PROJECTOR DESIGN : Full 10 bit HDR color processing accepting 100 Percent of the HDR source information to faithfully reproduce HDR content for an exceptional visual performance
  • SUPER CLARITY: 1,000,000:1 Contrast (yes you read that right) and 2600 Lumens for super clarity and brightness.
  • Epson “ULTRA BLACK” technology : Epson’s proprietary Compensation filter controls the polarization of light itself. 
  • LCD TECHNOLOGY is preferred by those who fear the ‘rainbow’ effect sometimes seen with DLP projectors.
  • CONNECTIVITY: 2x HDMI 2.0, 1x USB Type A, 1x LAN (RJ45), 1x Computer/D-sub 15-pin, 1x RS-232c, Trigger out. Including Hemi 2. 0 support that’s fully compatible with virtually all color formats, depths, and spaces while simultaneously supporting 4K HDR content at a full 60 Hertz. This allows for outstanding Compatibility with the latest 4K HDR content and next generation gaming hardware

NOTE: if you’re wondering the difference between the Epson 5050UB vs Epson 5050UBE the answer is not much – they are a similar 4k projectors but the Epson 5050UBE has a WIRELESS transmitter included – you can view the Epson 5050UBE here.

When to choose the BenQ HT3550 vs Epson 5050UB?

There is no ‘right’ answer to this question and it often comes down to whether you’re a BenQ fanatic or an Epson advocate. But if you’re looking for some objective decisions, consider the following points to ponder.

  • If you’re budget is under $2,000, then the ONLY choice is the BenQ HT3550. It’s a steal for well below that price.
  • If you’re a fan of LCD, you’ll choose Epson. If you believe in DLP and don’t ‘fear the rainbow’ then go with the BenQ. (Personally I have never had a problem with a rainbow effect on my BenQ).
  • If contrast ratio is your thing, the Epson’s 1,000,000:1 constrast ratio blows the BenQ’s 30,000:1 constrast ratio away – yet whether these ‘lab values’ translate to the real world for the Average Joe like you and me is hard to say.
  • If consumer reviews matter, the Epson has 100’s of reviews with combined 93% 4to5-star ratings (which is pretty incredible), while the BenQ has “only” 85% combined 4to5-star ratings – although this is with double the number of reviews (nearly 500 on Amazon alone as of this publication).

Bottom line: whether you choose the BenQ HT3550 or the Epson 5050UB, you’ll be happy. BOTH are truly awesome 4K projectors.


Best “High End” Home Theater 4K Projectors:

If you’re looking for more of an ‘ultimate’ experience AND you have the coin to procure it, there are a few additional 4K projectors you should look into.

  • The BenQ HT8050 is the world’s first DLP 4K UHD home cinema projector. The projector delivers an authentic picture quality of a commercial digital cinema. 
  • 4K UHD with razor-sharp True 8.3 million Pixel detail, 50,000:1 contrast ratio, and 2200 Lumens.
  • Immaculate True Zoom at 1.5:1 ratio and Focus Sync
  • THX Mode, pre-calibrated by THX engineers for the most accurate out-of-the-box picture quality possible.
  • Connectivity : 2 digital HDMI ports, D-Sub, USB-B mini, LAN, RS232, DC 12V, IR

There’s nothing quite like the Sony VPL-VW295ES…

  • NATIVE 4K RESOLUTION: 3 SXRD imagers display BEST IN CLASS 4096×2160 pixels each for ULTRA HD pictures – that equates to 8.8 millions pixels x 3 imagers for over 26-million pixel displays!
  • TRILUMINOS DISPLAY: View a broad spectrum of hard to reproduce tones for bright, true to life colors
  • Reality Creation Lens with 1500 Lumens 6000 hour life span.
  • MOTIONFLOW TECHNOLOGY: Smooth, lifelike motion for 4K and HD movie, sports and video game action
  • IMAX ENHANCED: bring stunning IMAX visuals to your home theatre with BEST IN CLASS viewing on up 200″ displays!

Epson breaks new ground in the world of home theater awesomeness. The release of “EpiqVison” gives you an ‘All-in-One” solution with the combination of an ultra short throw 4K projector AND a high end movie screen!

  • ULTRA-Short Throw Laser-Array is new type of laser projection that produces a stunning 100-120″ display, while being just inches from the wall itself.
  • Beautiful 100″ or 120″ ALR Screen — High-resolution ambient-light-rejecting screen produces an amazing wide-angle viewing experience with virtually zero glare.
  • 4K PRO-UHD Projection Technology — advanced processing for resolution enhancement, color and image processing, resulting in an exceptionally sharp picture with BEST IN CLASS 2-MILLION:1 Contrast Ratio!
  • Advanced HDR Processing — 10-bit HDR processing accepting 100% of the source information to faithfully reproduce HDR content for an exceptional visual performance.
  • Incredibly Bright — BEST IN CLASS 4,000 lumens for all-day viewing in virtually any lighting environment.

Best “Short Throw” 4K Projectors

Short Throw projectors allow you more flexibility in the size of room you want to watch in as well as where you place the projector itself. Standard projectors generally require ceiling mounting because they need to be place many feet away from screen you are projecting on to. Short throw projectors can be placed much closer to the screen – sometimes as close as a few inches. This gives you a wider range of possibilities and portability.

In addition to the short throw projectors to follow, don’t forget that the BenQ HT3550 (our #2 overall projector) and the new Epson EpiqVision (from the High End Home Theater category) are both short throw projectors and if you have the funds would be superior choices. However if you can’t go that route and still want a good short throw 4k Projector, then go with one of these…

  • 0.233:1 Ultra Short Throw Rate: Cast a 100 inch image from 7.2 inches away from the wall! Project between 80-150 inches
  • DLP Technology offers 4K Resolution with HDR 10: The VAVA’s 3000: 1 native contrast exceeds 2000: 1 native contrast in movie theaters.
  • Advanced Laser Light Source: 2500 Lumens of brightness offers 25,000 hours lens life.
  • Integrated Harman Kardon Soundbar: Built-in stereo surround speakers provide high-fidelity sound with 60W of power. Lossless dts-HD and Dolby Audio prevent distortion and create a superior audio experience.
  • 1.5MILLION:1 contrast ratio for superior clarity.
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth, USB, Triple HDMI, Wi-Fi, Optical
  • Beloved by Consumers: Over 90% 4-5 star ratings with over 800 reviews alone on Amazon.
  • DLP 4K UHD (3840×2160) Resolution featuring RGB separate primary colors for virtually no color loss compared to conventional projectors.
  • Up to 2700 Lumens and 2-Million:1 Contrast Ratio offers Best in Class performance.
  • Ultra Short Throw displays 120-inch image from just 7. 2″
  • TruMotion technology, a type of video processing where animation frames are generated between existing frames, makes animation look and feel more fluid
  • LG webOS lite. Use the included Magic Remote on this LG CineBeam projector to access LG’s webOS smart TV operating system for all your favorite content streaming apps such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, and VUDU and Alexa Built-In

Best 4K Projectors for Gamers

While any of the above projectors could certainly be used for video games, the fact is that Pro Gamers want their 4K projectors to have ultra fast refresh rates, low input lag, and super fast response time. Of the projectors already mentioned, the best on the list so far would be the Epson EpiqVision with it’s 16.7ms input lag which rivals even the Gamer-Recommended 4K Projectors below.

If you’re a Gamer Pro, you’ll want to seriously consider one of the following Best in Class 4K Projectors for Gaming: The Optoma UHD30x or the BenQ TK850

  • TRUE 4K ULTRA HD: 4K Ultra HD with 8.3 million pixels
  • LAG-FREE GAMING: BEST IN CLASS 240Hz gaming with blur-free visuals and unparalelled smoothness––combined with Enhanced Gaming Mode for 16ms response time.
  • CRISP, COLORFUL PICTURE: UltraDetail RGBWRGBW 8 segment color wheel for vivid and cinematic image
  • DYNAMIC BLACK: Contrast ratio (500,000:1); bright scenes appear clear while dark scenes remain detailed
  • EASY IMAGE SETUP: 1.1x zoom and ±40° keystone correction
  • ULTRA-BRIGHT: 3,400 lumens.
  • The Optoma UHD50X is another option – for a few hundred dollars more you’ll get the ability to project up to 302″ with a larger zoom and 1-Million:1 Contrast Ratio – see the Optoma UHD50X here.
  • TRUE 4K: 3840 × 2160 resolution with 8.3 million Pixels
  • 4K Gaming – BenQ True 4K Projectors with its 10-Element Crystal Lens Array provides such a razor-sharp image that you will never want to leave the action that is brought to life.
  • VIVID COLORS IN ANY AMBIENT LIGHTING: Perfectly balanced high visual brightness (>3000lm) and vivid colors (98% Rec.709) for use in well-lit environments
  • Awesome Sound: A 10-watt chambered speaker enhances sound quality for gaming, movie-watching, and streaming.
  • DLP Technology 60hz refresh rate, 3000 Lumens, and 1.3 Zoom Lens.

Best 4K “Smart” Projector

Smart Projectors should support seamless connectivity with other smart devices in your home. In addition to the smart projectors below, the LG HU85LA Ultra Short Throw 4K Projector is also a smart projector.

  • 4K UHD + HDR10: 4K Ultra HD, HDR10 technology and an incredible 2,000,000:1 contrast ratio
  • BRIGHT, RELIABLE LASER: Up to 30,000 hours Lens Life with 3,000 lumens Lens
  • ULTRA-SHORT THROW: up to 120″ image from inches away
  • VOICE ASSISTANT COMPATIBLE: With the Alexa smart home and custom skills or Google Action, control your CinemaX P2 projector with intuitive voice control using Amazon Echo and Google Home devices
  • IFTTT SUPPORT: Seamless connectivity with thousands of other smart devices; for example, the CinemaX P2 can be programmed to mute when your smart doorbell rings
  • 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) resolution with 8.3 million pixels
  • BRIGHT: up to 2500 lumens with 150,000:1 Contrast Ratio
  • Long Life – up to 20,000 hour lens life.
  • SMART: LG’s exclusive Smart TV streaming content platform is simple to set up and offers fast and fun discovery of exciting premium movies, TV shows and more from the most popular content providers
  • Screen Share: Watch premium content from popular providers such as Netflix, YouTube and more. Wirelessly screen-share videos to this projector with a compatible smartphone or tablet, over a simple Wi-Fi connection.

Best PORTABLE 4K Projectors

Most 4K Projectors are around 20 pounds and at that weight are best suited for ceiling mounting in a home theater setup. If you’re looking for a PORTABLE 4K projector so you can easily do OUTDOOR MOVIES, take it camping, or move it between rooms, you’ll want to find one that’s a bit easier to carry – ideally under 10 pounds. In addition to the ones listed below, the LG HU80KA 4K UHD Laser Smart Projector is portable, and the Optoma 4K Projector line has multiple options under 10 pounds (Optoma UHD50X and the Optoma UHD30 are both under 9 lbs).

Meanwhile, for a 4k projector designed with portability in mind, check out the AAXA 4K1 Portable Projector which is UNDER 4 pounds!

  • Native 4K UHD (3840×2160) Ultra High Definition Pixel Resolution, 1500 LED Lumen Brightness
  • Long Life: up 30,000+ Hours Osram Quad-Cast LEDs
  • Dual HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.2 Inputs allows user to stream 4K UHD content. Compatible with Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video
  • Portable Design and Operation – Play Video, Image, Music and Text directly from a USB or TF Card with the Onboard Media Player. Portable size, easy to carry between rooms or throughout your home.
  • Perfect for Home Theater, Business Use. Up to 200″ screen.
  • Weighs less than 4 lbs.

Best 4K Projectors Recap

The ‘best’ 4K projector is the one that fits YOUR family’s intended use and that will depend on your personal situation – where you want to use it, how big the room is, if you plan to mount it or move it around, what you want to use it for (gaming vs home theater vs general use), and of course what your budget it. Hopefully we’ve given you some insights that will help you decide that’s best for you. And when you do, drop us a line in the comments so we can hear how you made out.

If you’re looking for advice on how to set up your home movie theater, check out this article from our friend’s at The Porch.

Now grab your popcorn and get busy enjoying your new 4k Projector!


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