A projector can be a very helpful tool for educators, business leaders, and anyone else who needs to convey information to a large group of people.
However, a model that’s popular for use in home theaters won’t necessarily be the best projector for presentations. While you’ll still want a clear image, finding a projector that’s bright and easy to use is more important than finding the absolute best video quality if it will mostly be used in classrooms and meeting spaces.
All of the projectors below check those boxes. Considering all the factors, the Epson EX9230 is the best overall presentation projector (>>> Check its pricing on Amazon). Let’s take a closer look at the key features so you can decide if it’s the best choice for you.
Best Projector for Presentations 2023 – Our Top Picks:
|Epson EX5280||Epson EX9230||BenQ LW500ST||Optoma ZH406STx||BenQ MS560|
|Brightness (Lumens)||3,800 ANSI||3,500 ANSI||2,000 ANSI||4,200 ANSI||4,000 ANSI|
|Throw Distance||3.6' - 29.6'||3.6' - 29.9'||1.8' - 10.2'||1.3' - 10.9'||4.3' - 39.2'|
|Screen size||30" - 300"||34" - 332"||30" - 200"||37" - 300"||30" - 300"|
|Internal Speakers||2.0 Watts Mono||2.0 Watts Mono||10.0 Watts Mono||10.0 Watts × 2||10.0 Watts Mono|
|Price||Find on Amazon||Find on Amazon||Find on Amazon|
|Find on Amazon|
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If you want to leave the lights on during your presentation, you should get a projector that produces at least 3,000 lumens. Lower than that, and the image will lose clarity and may be hard to see for much of your audience. In very bright spaces or outdoor venues, you’ll want something that’s around 4,000 lumens or higher.
The BenQ MS560 can handle all of these environments, and is the projector you’ll want for use both indoors and outdoors. That said, the 3,800-lumen Epson EX5280 and 3,500-lumen Epson EX9230 or Optoma ZX300 will be bright enough for most presentation spaces.
Brightest Projector: BenQ MS560
Two qualities make a projector portable. First, it needs to be small, light, and easy to carry. Second, it needs to be rugged enough that it won’t break during the trip.
Both the Epson EX5280 and EX9230 use a narrow, lightweight design, with a well-protected lens and solid construction that gives them good durability.
While they’re very portable, the winner in this category is the BenQ LW500ST, which is similarly compact and lightweight. It also comes with an instant on-and-off function. It only takes around 8 seconds for the projector to start up. >>>You might need to connect the projector to your phone.
Most Portable: BenQ LW500ST
This may not be a concern if you’ll be using the projector in spaces like auditoriums or conference centers that have their own sound equipment. Not every space has this luxury, though.
For traveling professionals, a projector with a solid built-in speaker saves you the need to bring extra sound equipment. It’s also helpful for educators and small businesses since that’s one less thing you’ll have to buy before giving presentations.
All of these projectors have speakers, but two stand out for their ability to fill a presentation space: the BenQ MS560 and Optoma ZH406STx are tied. Each projector comes with integrated dual 10-watt speakers. However, the BenQ MS560 comes at a lower price point while still providing enough sound to fill small and medium size auditoriums.
Best Sound: BenQ MS560
The Epson EX5280 is designed with presentations in mind. Its 3LCD display is optimized for crisp lines on text, with bright and accurate colors when you’re viewing graphics, charts, logos, and other images.
It plays video content at a standard definition (XGA) resolution, and though that would be low in a home theater context, it’s fine for uses like video conference calls and training videos.
The EX5280 also gets high marks for portability. It has a slim 3.2-inch profile and weighs just over 5 pounds. It’s also made to stand up to traveling, with the lens built into the housing to minimize the risk of damage during transportation. The included carrying case helps here, too, and includes a pocket for the remote and cables.
The rear panel of the Epson EX5280 includes HDMI, VGA, RCA, and USB inputs, so it can be used with equipment like VCRs and camcorders as well as modern A/V equipment.
As for the space and set-up, it does need a larger room but most people won’t need to worry about ambient light control, and its lamp is bright enough to use in moderate to bright indoor spaces.
It also has both vertical and horizontal keystone correction, though the long throw and limited zoom can still make it tricky to install in some spaces. For our more detailed review of this projector, click here.
- Excellent clarity for text and graphics
- 3LCD display produces consistent, accurate colors
- Compact and lightweight
- Good variety of input options
- Bright enough for use in most indoor light environments
- Accepts video content up to 4K
- Low resolution for video content
- Long throw with limited image alignment features
For presentations that will involve lots of video content, the Epson EX9230 is a great choice. Its full HD display matches the detail of a typical home theater projector available in the under-$1,000 price point.
This is paired with dynamic image contrast and a 3-chip LCD display that produces the full RGB color for an overall vibrant and realistic picture.
The Epson EX9230 has a shorter throw distance than many standard-throw projectors, producing a 100-inch image from around 8-10 feet away.
The inclusion of a horizontal slider and automatic keystone correction give it a faster set-up, too, good news for traveling professionals or schools that need to share projectors between multiple classrooms.
It is similar in size and shape to the EX5280 above and equally portable, down to the durable lens design and included carrying case.
The rear panel of the EX9230 includes the dual HDMI and USB ports you’ll find on most home theater projectors, with the added options of VGA and RCA.
It also has a built-in speaker, though it’s not very powerful and the sound is weak, particularly in the low end. It’s functional for things like narration or video chats, but if you want room-filling sound you’ll need to connect it to external speakers.
- Full HD resolution with strong image contrast
- Vibrant colors with no rainbow effect
- Very portable design
- Dual HDMI ports plus RCA, VGA, and USB
- Fast and easy set-up
- Short lamp life span
- Built-in speaker is weak
Putting on a presentation can be a nerve-wracking experience, even if you’re a pro. The last thing you want is a projector that’s difficult to set up or takes forever to turn on. The LW500ST has you covered. The projector comes with an array of features, making setup a breeze.
Best of all, you’re not going to strain a muscle moving the projector from the auditorium to your car. It only weighs a little over 5 lbs.
A convenient instant on/off function restarts the projector in about eight seconds. You don’t need to wait for the projector to warm up.
It also helps ensure your presentation runs smoothly, even if an attendee accidentally unplugs the projector. Image alignment functions like vertical keystone correction, corner fit, and screen fill make it easy to center everything from spreadsheets to videos.
You can also take advantage of 1.2x zoom to align images when you are in cramped spaces.
Along with flexible throw distances, thanks to the various lenses, the projector comes with dual HDMI ports. You can easily connect a laptop or other external devices.
Image clarity is key for a successful presentation. The projector is equipped with a Presentation Mode that matches onscreen brightness and colors to the connected device.
What you see on your PC is the same image displayed on the projector screen. The projector also covers 98% of the Rec709 spectrum, ensuring realistic colors for your charts, graphs, and videos.
The contrast ratio is a little low for anyone planning on using it as a home theater projector. However, a 20,000:1 contrast ratio is more than enough for your presentation materials to appear crisp and clear.
If you need to walk away from the projector, the Kensington Lock feature discourages theft.
- Quick and easy setup
- Power saving mode
- Presentation mode
- Crisp, bright colors
- Flexible throw distance
- Without horizontal keystone correction, images can be difficult to align at some throw distances
With less than five feet of space, you can cast 120” images. The ZH406STx is a short-throw projector ideal for presentations and even home use.
It produces a bright, clear picture in 1080p. You can also enjoy videos in 4K. The projector has a 4K HDR input and is also compatible with 720p. Whatever the source for your presentation, you can display the images.
HDR10 and HLG technologies produce deep blacks and crisp whites. You can find projectors with contrast ratios higher than 300,000:1, but it’s more than enough for your presentations.
Documents, videos, and spreadsheets are clearly displayed on the screen. You also don’t need to worry about ambient light in auditoriums or conference rooms.
The projector has a 4,200 lumens light long-lasting light source. It can last for up to 30,000 hours and it’s also dust-resistant, thanks to the IP6X certification.
Along with the 4K input, the projector comes with dual HDMI ports. Audio, USB-A, and USB ports ensure you can easily connect all of your devices. It makes it easier to move smoothly along with your presentation when all of your devices are connected.
The two internal 10-watt speakers are not going to replace a sound system. The speakers are powerful enough to fill a medium size auditorium with clear audio. The audio ports on the projector also allow you to connect to external speakers when you are in larger spaces.
Since it is a short-throw projector, it doesn’t come with a lot of adjustment features. However, four corner correction and 0.8 – 2.0x zoom give you some installation flexibility.
- Bright light source
- Flexible installation
- 4K HDR input
- Dual internal speakers
- Robust connection panel
- Aligning onscreen images can be difficult when the projector isn’t centered
If you need a projector that can handle indoor/outdoor use, the BenQ MS560 is a top option. Its 4,000-lumen bulb maintains the image clarity and saturation even in bright spaces, and its strong dynamic contrast means dark areas will look as rich as the colors.
The BenQ MS560 is also perfect for those who need a portable projector but don’t have a lot to spend. It’s both the most affordable and the lightest projector on the list, and is nicely compact for those who’ll be taking their projector on the go.
You won’t need to bring speakers, either, since the 10-watt speaker that’s built-in puts out enough volume to fill a classroom, conference room, or similarly-sized space.
Of course, no projector at this price will be perfect, and the BenQ MS560 has its limitations. The main one is its image resolution, which is the lowest of the projectors reviewed here.
Its all-glass lens and high image contrast still do a good job producing legible text and good-looking graphics, but you’ll definitely notice the difference if you’re watching videos.
It also needs a lot of space, around 13-14 feet to fill a 100-inch screen, with only a 1.1x zoom and vertical keystone correction to help you align the image.
- Good image color and contrast
- Super-bright lamp
- Wide variety of input options
- Light and easy to move around
- Built-in speaker has decent volume and sound quality
- Excellent value
- Long throw with few alignment features
- Lowest resolution on the list
So What’s the Best Projector for Presentations?
The Epson EX9230 is the strongest overall performer, but it won’t necessarily be the best choice for everyone (>>> Find on Amazon). The budget-friendly BenQ MS560 has a powerful lamp ideal for use outdoors, while the BenQ LW500ST is extremely portable and a breeze to set up.
Whatever type of presentation you’re giving, one of these five projectors will be an ideal match.