5 Best Projector Under £500 UK 2021 | Buyer’s Guide and Reviews

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Best Projector Under £500 UK

Last Updated on 30 April, 2021 14:49 by highreviews

Nowadays, it’s easy to enjoy the thrill of the cinema at home. Projector equipment has exploded in popularity in recent years, with home cinema projectors now an incredibly affordable and reliable option for those looking to replicate the thrill to watch movies on the big screen from the comfort of their living rooms.

Our go-to guide on the best projector under £500 UK market has to offer has everything you need to know in order to make the best choice when buying new equipment for your home cinema setup, with all the essential information required to help you find the best budget projector the UK market has to offer.

Key Types of Projector


Before we delve into the various projector designs available, we will take some time to explore the chief types that all model varieties fall under. The first is the so-called “short throw” projector. These types of projector are designed with smaller spaces in mind as they can be positioned close to a projector screen or wall you’re using to project an image on.

Despite this, they can still produce a substantial enough image size and deliver impressive image quality. If you’re looking for a projector to use in pokey spaces or in the home, a short throw projector is almost always the safest bet.

You will also find many projectors advertised as “long throw” models. These are the opposite of short throw models, with the devices a much more suitable choice for use in larger rooms.

You have more freedom when it comes to placement and positioning here. Long throw projectors can be placed as close as fifty centimetres to a wall or projector screen.

However, if you want a larger image to make the most of a long throw projector, you can place the device upwards of 10-15 metres from a surface. This is definitely the preferred option for those looking to project a significant image size onto a projector surface or screen, with a long throw projector a must if you’re keen replicate the appeal of the big screen at home.

Different Projector Models


Now that we have determined the difference between long throw and short throw projectors, let’s look at some of the most common varieties of projector model you can find on the market. Below, we have outlined some of the most popular options you can put to use at home or in the office.

For Home Cinema Applications


A home cinema projector is without doubt the preferred option for those looking to enjoy a movie night, television shows, streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime at home in style. A quality home theatre projector can be used to project in full HD clarity, giving you an incredibly clean and vibrant image.

A good home cinema model will allow you to project at reasonable size. Furthermore, home cinema projectors will provide easy connectivity to other home entertainment equipment.

You should have no trouble connecting your projector to things like your set top boxes and Blu-ray players, while most models will also include SD card slots and USB inputs for attaching dongles an other devices. Most models come with remote controls for ease of use.

Fully Integrated Solutions


An all in one projector is well worth looking into if you are keen to save money on surplus equipment. The vast majority of all in one projectors will integrate speakers into their overall design, saving you the need to invest in separate audio equipment. This is not only a cost-effective solution, but also ensures you can count on an audio solution that’s been tailored and calibrated to the projector image itself.

The best all in one projectors will also allow for more enhanced visual technology, with 3D applications possible. With an all in one projector, you can look forward to vibrant and clear images, with plenty of versatility when it comes to placement and positioning. These devices are used to project indoors in low light and at shorter distances, so they’re a good choice for using in small rooms.

A Compact Alternative


If you’re after something that won’t take up much space, go for a compact take home projector. A compact projector choice will deliver all the standard features you’d expect from a mid-range home cinema projector model, although it benefits from being significantly smaller.

This makes it a good option if you are very strapped for space in the room you’re looking to project in. In fact, a good compact projector can be placed discreetly on a coffee table or bookcase if you’re looking to enjoy projected images in a tiny living room.

Admittedly, unless you are investing in something at a premium price point, you will probably have to put up with a few compromises to a larger model. However, if the appeal of compact design is top of your list of must-haves, these compromises won’t concern you too much.

What are Portable Projectors?


As with compact home cinema projectors, portable projectors are far smaller than other varieties on this list. In fact, the smallest portable projectors can be picked up and carried in a single hand. The portability makes them a very good bet for travelling. If you’re looking to take your projector with you on holiday or on visits to friends and family, a portable model is well worth considering.

In addition to being incredibly lightweight and generally far smaller than conventional models, a good portable projector should include integrated batteries to allow for operation when you’re not within reach of a mains power socket. Provided you regularly maintain full charging cycles, you might want to consider investing in a portable projector in lieu of a home cinema alternative.

What is Resolution & Lumens?


Image quality will of course play a significant part of your purchase decision when it comes to shopping for the best projector. To best understand resolution capabilities of a potential mode, bear in mind that resolutions will be measured in pixels.

An advertised resolution will tell you how many individual pixels are present in a projected image. The more pixels to an image, the sharper the overall image quality. Look out for Full HD (1020 x 1080p) for the best image results.

However, if you need to make some compromises to secure a cheap projector, a HD Ready resolution of 1280 x 720p should still provide you with quality image results.

Another key spec you need to bear in mind is lumens. The lumens number will let you know about what kind of brightness you can expect from a final projected image. As a rule, the more lumens, the brighter an image.

If you are looking for a home projector to use in well lit spaces, you will want a projector with a bright enough lumens rating to ensure adequate picture quality. Go for 3000 lumens in this case. However, if you are looking for a projector to use exclusively indoors in dark room, opting for something below 3000 lumens is entirely justified.

Consider Device Connectivity


We have already talked a little about connectivity with other devices, but it’s worth stressing again. If you are looking for a projector model to become an effective element of your home cinema setup, you certainly want one that can be readily connected to all manner of audio-visual equipment. At the very least, you will want a HDMI port connection so you can hook your projector up to your set top boxes, DVD players and Blu-ray players.

You will also want a USB input so you can insert dongles and connect to streaming services or access stored media on flash drives. A VGA port is also a good idea if you plan on using your home projector for office applications or presentations.

A 3.5mm audio jack should also be accounted for so you can connect wired headphones and speaker units to your projector. If you are looking at more premium models, consider going for a projector with Bluetooth connectivity as standard. This will make life far easier when it comes to connecting wireless speakers and supporting devices, saving you the hassle of cable cutter.

If there is money to spare then we highly recommend looking into some premium projector names such as the BenQ , Optoma  & Epson range whereby these brands cater for 4k projectors  / HDR picture quality.

Be sure to check our in-depth buyers guide and review on Portable DVD Player and Best Budget Soundbar.

Are you a gaming enthusiast? Why not pair the projector with a Gaming PC. We have also put together an article on the Top Tips For That Ultimate Gaming Setup.

Our Top picks of the Best Projector under £500 UK

We review the following Budget Projectors

  1. DR.Q HI-04 Budget Projector
  2. QKK Budget Projector
  3. VANKYO L430W WiFi HD Projector
  4. Projector APEMAN Portable Mini Budget Projector
  5. DR.Q Projector, L8 Mini Projector
Preview
DR.Q HI-04 Projector with Projection Screen 1080P Full HD Supported, Upgraded 6500 Lumens Video Projector Compatible with TV Stick PS4 HDMI USB AV for Home Cinema & Outdoor Movie, White.
QKK AK-81 Projector With Projection Screen, 6500 Lumens Mini Projector 1080P Full HD Supported, HD Video Projector Compatible with TV Stick Smartphone HDMI USB, Portable Projector for Outdoor Movies.
Recommended Choice
VANKYO L430W WiFi Mini Projector w/ 100 Inch Projector Screen, 6500 Lumens Portable Movie Projector Supports Full HD 1080P & 236" Display Compatible with TV Stick, HDMI, USB, PS5, iPhone, Android
Projector APEMAN Portable Mini Projector 5500 Lumens [2021 Upgraded] Support 1080P Max 180" Display LCD Home Cinema Projector 50000 Hour Life HDMI, VGA, USB, SD, AV Input Chromecast Compatible
Best Mini Projector
DR.Q Projector, Mini Projector 6000 Lumens, Video Projector Supports 1080P HD, Portable Projector Supports HDMI VGA AV USB TF Devices, Home Theater Projector, White.
Title
DR.Q HI-04 Projector with Projection Screen
QKK AK-81 Projector With Projection Screen
VANKYO L430W WiFi Projector
Projector APEMAN Portable Mini Projector
DR.Q Projector, Mini Projector
Native Resolution
720P
720P
720P
480P
720P
Maximum Display Resolution
1080P Full HD
1080P Full HD
1080P Full HD
1080P Full HD
1080P Full HD
Brightness
6000 Lumens
6000 Lumens
6000 Lumens
5500 Lumens
4500 Lumens
Contrast Ratio
3800:1
3800:1
3800:1
2000:1
3800:1
Projection Size
32 - 220 Inch
32 - 220 Inch
44 - 236 Inch
34 - 180 Inch
32 - 170 Inch
WiFi Connectivity
Projector Screen Included
Price
£76.49
£67.99
£89.99
£67.99
£55.99
Prime
Preview
DR.Q HI-04 Projector with Projection Screen 1080P Full HD Supported, Upgraded 6500 Lumens Video Projector Compatible with TV Stick PS4 HDMI USB AV for Home Cinema & Outdoor Movie, White.
Title
DR.Q HI-04 Projector with Projection Screen
Native Resolution
720P
Maximum Display Resolution
1080P Full HD
Brightness
6000 Lumens
Contrast Ratio
3800:1
Projection Size
32 - 220 Inch
WiFi Connectivity
Projector Screen Included
Price
£76.49
Prime
Learn More
Preview
QKK AK-81 Projector With Projection Screen, 6500 Lumens Mini Projector 1080P Full HD Supported, HD Video Projector Compatible with TV Stick Smartphone HDMI USB, Portable Projector for Outdoor Movies.
Title
QKK AK-81 Projector With Projection Screen
Native Resolution
720P
Maximum Display Resolution
1080P Full HD
Brightness
6000 Lumens
Contrast Ratio
3800:1
Projection Size
32 - 220 Inch
WiFi Connectivity
Projector Screen Included
Price
£67.99
Prime
Learn More
Recommended Choice
Preview
VANKYO L430W WiFi Mini Projector w/ 100 Inch Projector Screen, 6500 Lumens Portable Movie Projector Supports Full HD 1080P & 236" Display Compatible with TV Stick, HDMI, USB, PS5, iPhone, Android
Title
VANKYO L430W WiFi Projector
Native Resolution
720P
Maximum Display Resolution
1080P Full HD
Brightness
6000 Lumens
Contrast Ratio
3800:1
Projection Size
44 - 236 Inch
WiFi Connectivity
Projector Screen Included
Price
£89.99
Prime
Learn More
Preview
Projector APEMAN Portable Mini Projector 5500 Lumens [2021 Upgraded] Support 1080P Max 180" Display LCD Home Cinema Projector 50000 Hour Life HDMI, VGA, USB, SD, AV Input Chromecast Compatible
Title
Projector APEMAN Portable Mini Projector
Native Resolution
480P
Maximum Display Resolution
1080P Full HD
Brightness
5500 Lumens
Contrast Ratio
2000:1
Projection Size
34 - 180 Inch
WiFi Connectivity
Projector Screen Included
Price
£67.99
Prime
Learn More
Best Mini Projector
Preview
DR.Q Projector, Mini Projector 6000 Lumens, Video Projector Supports 1080P HD, Portable Projector Supports HDMI VGA AV USB TF Devices, Home Theater Projector, White.
Title
DR.Q Projector, Mini Projector
Native Resolution
720P
Maximum Display Resolution
1080P Full HD
Brightness
4500 Lumens
Contrast Ratio
3800:1
Projection Size
32 - 170 Inch
WiFi Connectivity
Projector Screen Included
Price
£55.99
Prime
Learn More

Reviews of 5 Best Projector under £500 UK


Now you know what to look for, we have put together our pick of the best budget projector models you can currently find on the UK market. You will find a healthy selection of options to accommodate all budgets, with quality picks from some of the best manufacturers in the business for that cinema quality viewing.


DR.Q HI-04 Budget Projector 1080P Full HD

Key Features

  • Native resolution of 720P but supports 1080P resolution
  • Contrast ratio of 3800 to 1
  • 6000 Lumen
  • Projection Size of 32 – 220 Inch
  • Comes with a 100 Inch projector screen

The DR.Q HI-04 HD Projector is a great choice for those looking for an all in one solution they can put to work straight out of the box. This projector delivers an impressive contrast ratio of 3800:1, while the latest 7P LC technique is utilised in the projection to ensure a crisp and clear image in full HD. This projector has a native resolution of 720P but supports 1080P resolution.

It’s also incredibly bright choice when compared with similar models on the market, making it ideal for ensuring a sharp and vibrant image in darker spaces. If you are hoping for larger images, this projector will not disappoint.

When placed at an optimal distance, this projector will produce images measuring 220 inches in width. Connectivity is also assured here, with inputs for HDMI, USB, TF Card, VGA and AV.

As such, you will have no trouble connecting all of your favourite devices, smartphones, flash drives and micro SD card so you can enjoy all of your media. You can also connect this projector to external speakers.

Additionally, this projector comes complete with a projector screen, meaning you don’t need to prepare a clean wall surface beforehand.


QKK Projector 6000 Lumen Video Budget Projector 1080P Full HD

Key Features

  • Native resolution of 720P but supports 1080P resolution
  • Contrast ratio of 3800:1
  • 6000 Lumen
  • Projection Size: 32 – 220 Inch
  • Comes with a projector screen

If you are after incredibly dynamic and vibrant images, this QKK Projector is the way to go. This HD video projector comes with 720P native resolution and delivers a 1080P Full HD resolution. This particular model comes equipped with a dynamic RGB colour output, while also utilising the innovative LCD 5.0 technique to deliver superb image quality, every time.

Brightness is also superb here, with upgraded white and colour brightness. In fact, this projector boasts a brightness of 6000 lumens, making it a much brighter alternative to similar models available on the market. Combined with FHD resolution, this makes it a must for those after top-tier image quality with no compromises.

Connectivity is also assured here, with inputs for HDMI, USB, TF Card, VGA and AV. As such, you will have no trouble connecting all of your favourite devices, smartphones, flash drives and micro SD card so you can enjoy all of your media.

This projector unit also comes complete with a projection screen so you can immediately start savouring home cinema. This quality screen can be used indoors and outside, making the whole package a very versatile option.


VANKYO L430W WiFi HD Projector | Home Cinema Projector | Full HD Resolution | Cinema HD | Best Projector under £500

Key Features

  • Native resolution of 720P but supports 1080P resolution
  • Offers WiFi connectivity
  • Contrast ratio of 3800:1
  • 6000 Lumen
  • Projection Size: 44 – 236 Inch

You will never need to worry about subpar viewing with the VANKYO L430 WiFi Projector. This high-end projector delivers high-quality HD images at all times, with a full HD resolution and impressive 85% higher brightness levels to hit the high notes of colour temperature and vibrancy.

This projector offers WiFi capability providing accessibility and portability to your home entertainment. This LED projector also offers wireless screen mirroring.

This projector also includes two integrated speakers, delivering superb HI-FI level audio performance as standard. When it comes to projection size, you’ve plenty of flexibility. With a range of 44 to 236 inches, this projector can be put to use in any size of room with ease.

This projector offers smartphone compatibility offering varied viewing experiences. It supports a wired connection too for iOS or Android through adapters. Other nifty features here include keystone correction, the dual cooling system that utilises two fans to ensure overheating isn’t something you need to worry about. This dual fan design will also keep operational noise down to a minimum.

It’s also a compact and user-friendly choice, making it a great entry point to the world of home cinema projection. If you’re looking for the Best Home Cinema Projector then this budget-friendly choice won’t break the bank.

How to Set up the VANKYO L430 Wifi Projector


Projector APEMAN Portable Mini Budget Projector

Key Features

  • Native resolution of 480P but supports 1080P resolution
  • Contrast ratio of 2000:1
  • 5500 Lumen
  • Projection Size: 34 – 180 Inch

The APEMAN LC350 Projector is a great choice for those looking to realise home cinema applications or project gaming action onto a larger screen.

There’s incredible brightness levels on offer here, with 5500 lumens and an impressive contrast ratio of 2000:1 on hand to ensure you get stunning projected images in most spaces even if there is ambient light. Sharpness and vibrancy is further enhanced by innovative 4.0 LCD technology and integrated LED light sources.

This projector will support 1080p Full HD viewing, while projected screen size ranges from between 34 inches and 180 inches. You also have ample choice of connection inputs. You can combine this projector with consoles such as xbox, set top boxes, USB drives, dongles and more.


DR.Q Projector, L8 Mini Projector | Best Mini Projector | Small Projector | Best Budget Mini Projector

Key Features

  • Native resolution of 720P but supports 1080P resolution
  • Contrast ratio of 3800:1
  • 4500 Lumen
  • Projection Size: 32 – 170 Inch

If you are after a very affordable option with plenty of premium spec, this DR.Q L8 Mini Projector is the way to go. This projector uses the latest dynamic RGB light output technology, delivering vibrant images in full HD clarity.

You can also look forward to enhanced colour and white brightness, ensuring your favourite media need never be compromised in terms of quality. Accessibility is also assured with wide points of connectivity.

The L8 Mini Projector can be connected via USB, HDMI, TF Card, VGA and AV. Therefore, all your favourite devices can be readily connected for projected viewing pleasure.

One of the biggest draws of this mini projector is of course its compact size. Easy to carry single-handedly and carry from A to B, it’s a good choice if you are after a portable projector that you can travel with.

However, with 4500 lumens brightness (2400 ANSI Lumen) and impressive HD support, not to mention a stunning lamp life, you don’t need to worry about making compromises to enjoy compact convenience.

Also included with this Mini projector is a 3 year full warranty.

What is the Best Budget Projector?

If you’re looking for an inexpensive and high-end Best Home Cinema Projector that is budget friendly, and delivers high Full HD quality images then VANKO L430W WiFi Projector is our recommended choice. It’s compact and user-friendly features, makes it a great choice for home cinema projection.

What is the Best Budget Mini Projector?

If you’re looking for a compact and portable high-end projector with a premium specification, then we recommend the DR.Q Projector, Mini Projector. This is an affordable mini projector that delivers high Full HD quality images and offers great connectivity with your favourite devices.

Interested in the Top 10 Amazon Best Sellers for Best Projector Under £500 UK?

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