5 Best Projectors for Home Theater Under $500

With the advent of streaming services and high-speed Internet, it has become much more convenient to enjoy movie nights at home. While a huge TV might cost thousands of dollars, home theater projectors can deliver big screen experience at a much smaller cost. Here we have carefully picked out some of the best projectors for home theater under $500.

Best Home Theater Projectos Under $500

Although most top-end home theater projectors now cost $1000 or more, it’s still possible to find projectors under $500 that offer a good balance of picture quality, smart features, and sound. But before getting started:

Now, let’s get to the best projectors for home theater under $500.

1. GooDee YG600 Plus Native 1080p Projector

  • Weight: 5.32lbs | Dimensions: 13.94 x 10.2 x 5.35 inches
  • Mounting Type: Table/Tripod, Ceiling/Wall Mount
  • Connectivity: 2x HDMI, 2x USB, 3 in1 AV, AUX, BT
  • Resolution: 1080p | Speakers: 2 X 5W
If you’re looking for an affordable home-theater projector, this mini projector from GooDee is a good option. It’s one of the few affordable options that offer native 1080p resolution. It has multiple connectivity options like HDMI, USB, and AV, and also features built-in stereo speakers.

The speakers aren’t that great though, and it’s recommended to use the AUX port or Bluetooth to connect to a good speaker setup. This projector supports 360-degree flip, which means front, rear, and ceiling installation are acceptable, although you’ll have to buy the mounts separately. It doesn’t come with a built-in battery and needs to be connected to a power outlet.

Coming to the picture quality, this projector can display screen sizes of up to 300 inches, but ideally, something around 90-100 inches should be optimal. The projector offers good brightness and contrast levels, and most users find the picture quality to be well worth the price. It also features a zooming feature so you can adjust the screen size without moving the projector.

It doesn’t feature built-in streaming apps, but you can use screencasting from your smartphone on some apps. A built-in office suite lets you directly project excel sheets and PowerPoint presentations from a USB stick. Overall, this projector provides bright 1080p video with in-built speakers and screen-cast options. At under $200, it is definitely one of the best cheap projectors for home theaters.

  • Reasons to buy: Native 1080p, stereo speakers, office suite, affordable.
  • Reasons not to buy: No built-in apps, manual focus.

2. Tkisko T01 1080p Projector

  • Weight: 5.92lbs | Dimensions: ‎14.45 x 10.67 x 5.43 inches
  • Mounting Type: Table/Tripod, Ceiling/Wall Mount
  • Connectivity: 2x HDMI, 2x USB, 3 in1 AV, AUX, BT
  • Resolution: 1080p | Speakers: 2 X 5W
If you’re looking for slightly better picture quality, Tkisko’s T01 projector offers a bright 450 ANSI Lumens picture and an impressive 12000:1 contrast ratio. This makes the visuals feel vibrant, and those low-light movie scenes come to life. It features multiple connectivity options and even has built-in dual speakers.

This HD home theater projector also features bi-directional Bluetooth, meaning you can connect it to BT speakers and also use the projector as a standalone BT speaker. You can use this projector on a tabletop or with a mount, and it also features auto-focus and 4D keystone correction features. While the projector can play 4K content, it still outputs only 1080p resolution, which should still be fine for movie nights.

The projector can display a screen size of up to 300 inches, although you’ll have to keep it pretty far away from the wall for that. It supports adjusting screen sizes without moving the projector itself. Most online reviews praise this projector for its picture quality, although it’s not meant to be used in well-lit conditions.

Talking about downsides, it doesn’t come with any streaming apps, so you’ll have to use your laptop or a streaming stick as the source. You can also use the built-in Wi-Fi to cast content from your Android or Apple smartphones. The impressive brightness and contrast ratio make it a great home cinema projector.

  • Reasons to buy: Native 1080p, great contrast, bi-directional Bluetooth.
  • Reasons not to buy: No built-in apps.

3. ABoolon Movie Projector

  • Weight: 5.7lbs | Dimensions: ‎‎10.6 x 9 x 4.7 inches
  • Mounting Type: Table/Tripod, Ceiling/Wall Mount
  • Connectivity: 2x HDMI, 2x USB, AV, VGA, AUX, BT
  • Resolution: 1080p | Speakers: 2 X 10W
The reason why it’s one of the top home theater projectors is its impressive picture quality. It offers a brightness of 900 ANSI lumens with a contrast ratio of 15000:1 and 99% coverage of the NTSC color gamut. Simply put, this is one of the best and brightest images a projector at this price can offer.

Along with offering great picture quality, this 1080p projector from ABoolon has dual 10W speakers that add enough loudness and bass to your movie nights without needing external speakers. It can play 4K content, although its output resolution is still 1080p.

The projector can display screen sizes of up to 500 inches, but for optimal experience, 100-120 inches should be more than enough. It doesn’t come with any in-built apps, so you’ll have to use a streaming stick or cast content directly from your phone over Wi-Fi.

Along with offering a great home cinema experience, this projector can display Excel/Word/PDF files directly via USB and also offers features like auto-keystone correction and changing screen size without moving the projector. These features make it our pick for the best home theater projector under $500.

  • Reasons to buy: Great picture quality, good speakers.
  • Reasons not to buy: No built-in apps.

4. XGIMI MoGo Pro Portable Projector

  • Weight: 1.9lbs | Dimensions: ‎‎5.51 x 3.94 x 3.54 inches
  • Mounting Type: Table/Tripod
  • Connectivity: 1x HDMI, 1x USB, AUX, Wi-Fi
  • Resolution: 1080p | Speakers: 2 X 3W
If your home cinema keeps shifting locations, or you like to take your movies with you when you travel, XGIMI MoGo’s rechargeable battery will keep you entertained. This projector features a native resolution of 1080p and can project a screen brightness of 300 ANSI lumens. While that’s not the brightest, it’s still more than enough for family movie nights.

It’s super portable at under 2 lbs weight and with a cylindrical design smaller than some soda bottles. This is also the first projector on our list to feature the Android TV interface. This means you can directly download and access streaming apps like Hulu, YouTube, etc., on this projector without needing any external source. You do get HDMI and USB ports here to connect to other media.

Besides using it with home theater, you can use it when traveling as well as it also features dual 3W speakers. However, the speaker quality isn’t the best, and connecting external speakers with AUX or Bluetooth is recommended.

This projector is unique because it can run on a battery, so you can use it while camping, traveling, or at outdoor parties. Although the company claims a battery life of about 2 hours, many users claim that in real-world usage, the projector only manages to last about an hour on battery.

  • Reasons to buy: Built-in battery, Android TV, travel-friendly.
  • Reasons not to buy: Not the brightest projector for the price.

5. Epson EpiqVision Flex CO-FH02 Projector

  • Weight: 5.7lbs | Dimensions: ‎‎8.3 x 12.5 x 3.4 inches
  • Mounting Type: Table/Tripod, Ceiling/Wall Mount
  • Connectivity: HDMI, USB, AUX, Wi-Fi
  • Resolution: 1080p | Speakers: 1 X 5W
This projector brings Epson’s legacy and reliability to the table, which itself is a huge bonus. It can deliver screen sizes up to 300 inches and also features a single 5W speaker. It features Epson’s 3-chip 3LCD technology, which displays 100% of the RGB color gamut for every frame, allowing for outstanding color accuracy while maintaining excellent color brightness.

Simply put, this is the best Epson projector you can get on this budget and one of the best at-home projectors in image quality. This projector has hundreds of reviews on Amazon praising its image quality and smooth performance.

While it’s not a smart projector by itself, it comes with an Android TV streaming stick allowing you to download and use all your favorite streaming apps directly. One downside is that this projector features a fixed lens, so moving the projector is the only way to adjust the screen size.

It features a single speaker only, but the bass reflex port helps add some more weight to its performance. If you’re looking for a trusted brand option, this is one of the best projectors for home theaters. Priced much higher originally, it’s generally selling for a discount on Amazon. So, keep an eye out for that.

  • Reasons to buy: Good picture quality, Android TV, reliability.
  • Reasons not to buy: Fixed lens, pricey.

FAQs About Home Theater Projectors Under $500

1. What are some common issues with home theater projectors under $500?

Some common issues include low image quality, poor sound, and a lack of connectivity options. It’s also common for these projectors to have limited adjustability and a short lifespan compared to more expensive models.

2. What are the best lumens for a home theater projector?

Generally, you’ll want a projector with at least 2,000 lumens (or 300ANSI lumens) for a small to medium-sized room with low ambient light. Remember that higher lumens do not necessarily equate to better image quality. A projector may be able to display a brighter image, but it may also have a lower contrast ratio or poorer color accuracy.

The Show Must Go On..A Budget

All of the projectors featured here offer only 1080p native resolution, but you can also check out the best 4K projectors. When it comes to finding the best home theater projectors under $500, it’s all about balancing price and performance.

While legacy brands charge a premium for their experience and reliability, some newer brands pack plenty of features at more affordable prices. So, grab some popcorn, dim the lights, and let the show begin!

Last updated on 20 January, 2023

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