TV vs Home Projector – Which Should You Buy In 2020?

Projectors have a lot of advantages. For starters they are easy to install, they offer a bigger screen, they consume less space, they are affordable, they are lightweight, portable, and easy to repair. The advantages keep coming.

In our previous post, we discussed some of the reasons you should get a projector. However, today we want to do something a little bit different. We want to outline the advantages of a projector in comparison to a TV. Let us assume you can only buy either a projector or a TV, you are probably wondering which you should choose. In this post, we will compare these two to help you decide.

Table of Content

Price Challenge: TV vs Projector

Projectors are much cheaper than TVs. For less than $100, you can get a really good projector that will display your movies on a 120-inch screen. With less than a hundred dollars you have access to all that and more. If you decide to go a bit further and expand your budget, you can even get a better display for less than $500.

A TV with a screen measuring 120 inches can cost around $130,000. The price is not even comparable. You cannot get a $100 flat-screen TV. However, you can get on for $150 but it would be around 32 inches. The prices of TVs are justified. They have plenty of functions and are built differently. However, if you are on a budget, a projector would be better.

Winner: Projector


Neither projectors nor TVs need a lot of maintenance however as someone who has used both extensively, I would say I had to repair my projector a couple of time in a space of some years and only ever had to repair my TV once. The thing, however, is that each time I took my projector for repairs, I never spent more than $20 to repair it. It was always tiny things developing faults. In fact, I suspect that if I had listened to my guts and bought a projector within the $200 and $500 dollar range, I may never have needed to fix it at all. However, when my TV developed a fault, the bill was over a quarter of the overall cost. When all these are considered, it is rather hard to pick out a winner and so. However, when you consider the fact that projector bulbs wear out from time to time, you will have to go with a TV.

Winner: TVs


When we speak of durability, we speak of how long it can last without needing to buy a new one. The answer to this depends widely on how it is used. If you do not know how to correctly handle even a stone, you can damage it. It is extremely important that you take good care of your appliances. That being said, despite the fact that I had to repair my TV once, I am still able to use it years after. Except you buy a really shitty brand or mishandle it, your TV will last very very long. I cannot say the same for projectors. In order to get the same decade long use out of a projector, you have to pick a good brand and use it well. However, my projector is going on six years and so, it depends on how you use it. I think the winner is obvious.

Winner: TVs

Screen Size

Projectors have larger screens and that is a fact. One of my reasons for getting a projector was to host large movie nights. If you are tired of having to focus on a tiny screen, know that for as low as a hundred dollars, you could get a screen wide enough to host your own mini-theater. TVs do not have this advantage. Of course, there are wide TVs but their costs make projectors seem like child’s play. For  $100, you can get a really good projector that will display your movies on a 120-inch screen. A TV with a screen measuring 120 inches can cost around $130,000. Incomparable size, I think it is obvious who wins this.

Winner: Projectors

Contrast and Brightness

When we speak about contrast or brightness, you probably understand already. We are speaking of the vividness and amount of light emitted. This is one point that TVs win hands down. Since projectors do not emit light, they cannot control the brightness. The brightness is controlled by whatever is playing and is being played. If you are a fan of turning the brightness way up to the point where you have to use glasses because your eyesight is damaged, sorry, projectors won’t cut it.

Winner: TVs

Eye Care

It is common knowledge that screens on laptops, TVs, and phones emit light. This is why more and more phones are having an eye care option. This light emitted can damage the eyes if one watches for too long. A lot of times, the ache and discomfort in our eyes interrupt us while we watch TV. That doesn’t mean we stop. Game of Thrones is more important than our eyes. However, projectors present an alternative to this. Rather than emitting light, projectors reflect light which is why if you have an open window that lets in a lot of light, it could really affect the clarity of your projector. Long story short, projectors are great for the eyes as they do not emit light. Safe to say; the winner is clear.

Winner: Projectors


A TV stays on the wall or on a stand. If you do not have space, it could present a problem as it has to have a dedicated space. If you use a projector, however, the projector itself barely takes up any space. However, you may ask ‘but what of the screen?’ Depending on your choice and projector, your screen could be as large as 120 inches. However, you can roll a projector screen up [think a roll of tissue paper]. When you roll a projector screen up, it easily comes together as it is light. You can place the circumference with a very thin diameter under your bed or behind a door or anywhere. You would only need to bring it out when you want to use it. Hence, there is not a need for a designated space.

Winner: Projectors

Sound Quality

Each TV comes with its own speaker system. Depending on the make, they are usually loud and focus a lot on clarity. However, not ever projector comes with one. Although most do, a projector without one can be found. Those projectors that have speakers do not have as much detail put into them as TVs do. However, if you pick a good brand you’ll get good quality. This round, however, has to go to ‘you know who’.

Winner: TVs


Lastly, we speak on portability. Without a doubt, TVs are not portable. They are heavy and large and they aren’t easy to carry without having a thousand and one worries coursing through your mind. What if it falls? What if I fall? Projectors are the real deal when it comes to portability. Both the screen and the projector itself are easy to carry and move from one place to another. If your projector falls, similar to your TV, it will probably get damaged. However, since it is lighter, there is less chance of that happening.

Winner: Projectors


Final Scores

  • Projectors: 5
  • TVs: 4

Despite the fact that the projector won, due to the different features, a TV might be what you choose. If you decided to go for a projector, here are some of the best projectors under $100. If you are looking for something a bit higher, here are some of the best ones under $500.

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