Best Selling Business and Church Projector

Hitachi CP-X3010 projector

We spend a lot of time on this blog discussing the features and specifications of home theater projectors (like the Panasonic PT-AE4000U or the Epson Home Cinema 8500 UB) because they make up our best selling models.

But we just as many projectors to people who use projectors for business, church, school, and training efforts. So why don’t these projectors usually show up in the Top Ten projectors list? Probably because we sell so many different models in the business category that it dilutes the numbers for any one model. So, usually you’ll find popular business units near the end of the top ten.

However, lately we have had one product that has been burning up the top ten charts here at So, we thought it might be useful to look at some of the reasons the Hitachi CP-X3010 is a top selling business projector here at And in the process, we’ll talk about some of the features these buyers look for when they purchase and why.

Top Five Projectors (as of December 29th, 2009)

Here is a quick look at our top five at the time of this posting. As is typical, four of our top five are home theater units. But there at number three we have a Hitachi projector.

  • 1. Panasonic PT-AE4000U
  • 2. Panasonic PT-AX200U
  • 3. Hitachi CP-X3010
  • 4. Epson Home Cinema 8500 UB
  • 5. Epson Home Cinema 8100

[ see current list of Top Ten Projectors ]

So how does the Hitachi CP-X3010 find itself at the number three spot this week on top projector countdown? Of course the short answer is simply; brightness for the price. But the value, warranty, and feature are also motivators.

The first question most business users ask is, “how much brightness do I need for what I do?” And for most users, brighter is better. For a portable projector (7.9 lbs.) 3000 lumens is pretty bright. We used to recommend at least 1000 lumens for lights on presenting, but now we are more likely to suggest 2000-2500 because there are so many inexpensive options in that category. And at $845 (before discount) the X3010 has the cost and the brightness combo that resonates. For church and training buyers, the features are also a real plus.

Church and School Projector Buyers

This projector seems to be particularly popular with Church and Worship segments because the features fit the application. Youth groups and smaller worship spaces are a good match for this projector because the 16W speaker is nice and loud for audio. Usually you’d get a 5W speaker or so with a projector of this size. The 16W speaker provides good audio in a small to mid-size room. Also, it has a 6000 hour lamp life (in economy mode) which is a little longer than most lamps claim to last. They ‘hybrid filter’ is also a plus because it means less regular maintenance. And finally, for church sanctuaries and large auditoriums, the VGA output for daisy-chaining means some cost in cable runs in a large multi projector installations.

  • Low price
  • 3-year warranty
  • 16W speaker built-in
  • 2 VGA in and 1 VGA out (for daisy chaining)
  • 6000 hour lamp and Eco mode – Budget friendly
  • Hybrid filter for easy maintenance

Training and Sales Projector Buyers

Sales and training managers are frequent buyers of projectors for presentations. Many of which are on the road. That means portability is a real plus. So lighter weight is better, but lighter usually means less brightness. The X3010 falls a little closer to the heavier portable category, but the 3000 lumens is a plus – particularly because traveling presenters have to deliver in various spaces. The component video input is a plus for business users who want to watch some movies at home on the weekends. The template function is also a plus. It allows you to place a company logo on your opening screen for a polished touch. So, along with the value assessment we managed above, some other nice features for the business user include:

  • 7.9 lbs. carry weight
  • Component video and 2000:1 contrast (for the weekend user)
  • Template function

Special Buy Alert : If you need more brightness, watch for a special buy (and new lower price) on the 4000 lumen Hitachi CP-X4020 coming very soon!

Of course there are many, many options for portable and installation projectors. From projectors for under $600, to network ready projectors, wireless ready projectors, brighter, higher resolution, HDTV projectors, and about any possible projector your heart desires. If you are looking for a specific manufacturer, feature, or to meet specific specifications for brightness, resolution, weight, connectivity, or just about anything else… check out our Projector Finder tool. You can sort through the wide selection of projectors by feature, price, and more. You can stay informed of which are our top ten projectors any time.

Projector Inventory Clearance Sale

Inventory Clearance Sale - Projectors

It’s the end of the year, so it’s time to clear the shelves of the best products from the past year. We haven’t got much home theater left, so these are primarily business projectors. If you are in the market for a projector, these are some fantastic values. If you aren’t in the market, you might consider it with prices this low on top brand projectors. View our entire list here »

  • Casio XJ-S32B Refurb : $499.00 | XGA, 2300 lumens, superslim design.]
  • Casio XJ-S41B Refurb : $499.00 | XGA, 2500 lumens, superslim design ]
  • Epson PowerLite 822+ : $689.00 | XGA, 2600 lumens, 400:1 contrast, 6.4 lbs.]
  • Hitachi CP-X2010 : $639.00 | XGA, 2200 lumens, 500:1 contrast ratio, 7.7 lbs.]
  • Hitachi CP-X3010 : $799.00 |
    XGA (1024 x 768) resolution, 3000 lumens, 2000:1 contrast ratio, 7.9 lbs. ]
  • Hitachi CP-X5 : $599.00 |
    Native XGA (1024 x 768) resolution, 2500 lumens, 500:1 contrast, 3.9 lbs.]
  • Mitsubishi XD530U : $949.00 | XGA, 3000 lumens, 2000:1 contrast, wireless capable, 7.5 lbs.]
  • NEC NP200 : $499.00 | XGA, 2100 lumens, 1300:1 contrast ratio, 5.3 lbs.]
  • NEC NP300 : $559.00 | [ XGA, 2200 lumens, 500:1 contrast ratio, 6.6 lbs.]
  • Sanyo PLV-Z700 : $1,399.00 (plus discount with coupon code SANYOSAVE) | HD 1080p, 1200 lumens, 10000:1 contrast, short throw lens.]
  • Toshiba TDP-EW25U : $1,299.00 | WXGA, 2600 lumens, 2000:1 contrast, 9.2 lbs.]
  • Toshiba TDP-TW420U : $1,499.00 | XGA, 4000 lumens, 2000:1 contrast, wireless capabilities, 9.5 lbs.]
  • Vivitek D825MX : $499 | XGA, 2600 lumens, 2200:1 contrast, 5.7 lbs.]

Find all Clearance Projectors listed here »

Home Theater Buyers Guide

[ this is a reprint of our Projector People Post home theater tech story ]

Happy Snowfellow

Ho! Ho! Ho! The Holidays are here again! And the decade will end on a particularly joyous year for the home theater enthusiast on a budget. Why? Well, you could say it’s because our best selling new projectors are aggressively priced right out of the gate. Or you might also say it’s because there is so much wonderful HD content out there. Or maybe it’s just because the newest projectors produce the best looking video you’ve ever seen on a 120-inch screen. Whatever reason resonates, this is a great year for big screen, home theater projection. So, let’s move on to some of our usual holiday buyers guide. You’ll get some tips for saving money, and fast and easy tech information that’ll help you pick the best home theater projector for you.

Projector People : Savings Places

Before we get into our technical guide, here are a few pages that might lead to savings for you. Our demo projector inventory (usually very limited use projectors), rebates and promotions, Deal of the Day, and other specials we may featured are linked below.

SAVINGS TIP: Due to manufacturer regulations, authorized resellers have to be a little creative in order to offer you our best price. So add your projector to your cart to see the lowest prices on most projectors. Or, request a quick quote for a Sanyo product to see the lowest price. Packages are also a good way to find additional savings. Call for the most up to date pricing or to create a custom package.

Projector Brightness

As usual, we will start with brightness. Brightness is an important specification, but not much has changed over the past year. In general, dedicated home theaters (ceiling mounted projector in a room with controlled lighting) are still your best space for achieving a flawless image, even with a low lumen projector. Media rooms, backyard theaters, converted garages and basements will most likely require a projector with more brightness to get the best image. But really, about any new home theater projector is going to be bright enough in most environments. Still, we have put together a chart for brightness in general conditions. Call a Projector Expert if you have special considerations in your space.

Home Theater Projector Brightness Recommendations
Room Type Recommended Brightness
Small Theaters* 900 – 1500 lumens (or more)
Large Theaters** 1200 – 2000 lumens (or more)
Outdoor Theaters 1500 lumens (or more)
Media Rooms*** 2000 lumens (or more)

* Dedicated space with controlled lighting and a screen under 100-inches.
** Dedicated space with controlled lighting and a screen over 100-inches.
*** A media room as defined here is a space with windows that is used for multi-purpose entertaining.

SAVINGS TIP: If you see higher lumen ratings on a low priced projector, there is usually going to be a trade off for contrast, video processing and/or optics. When buying, ponder the importance of image quality versus image brightness. Do you want a flawless image in a dedicated space? Or a more flexible media room projector that will work with the lights on? The more expensive projectors will offer you both brightness and image quality, but may lack portability. Ask a Projector Expert for more about what is right for your viewing habits.

The Reigning Resolution


Last year we said ‘if you can afford 1080p HD, then get 1080p HD.’ This year, there are plenty of ‘budget’ 1080p options. So the question becomes, entry level (low priced) 1080p or high end (higher priced) 1080p projection? Our 720p category has all but disappeared, with just one or two strong products left on the market. So, the answer to which resolution is right for you, is in most cases 1080p. No chart needed for that. However, there are certainly more questions to be asked about the technical differences between high and low-end 1080p projectors. For that, I am going to share a few blog entries where we cover the details in depth.

Three Helpful Blog Entries

Compare Three $999 High Resolution Projectors
BenQ W1000, Optoma HD20, and Vivitek H1080FD featured in this article. Brightness, contrast, and more are explored. Click here to read »

Compare Three High End 1080p Projectors
Panasonic PT-AE4000U, Epson Home Cinema 8500UB, and BenQ W6000 discussed within. Brightness, contrast, and more are explored. Click here to read »

Compare Entry Level $999 1080p to High End HD Projectors
Video comparison and information about the differences between the two categories. Click here to read »

Price Breakthroughs This Year

This has been a breakthrough year for low prices in home theater projection. Projectors have broken two price barriers. Entry level true HD 1080p home theater now under $1000 (at $999) and high-end home theater for as low as $1999. That’s good news for buyers that have been watching and waiting for lower prices. For those who prefer suggested products mentioned directly, here’s a quick breakdown of products in the three home theater categories.

    Entry Level Home Theater : $999

Mid Level Home Theater : $1199 – $1499

High End Home Theater : $1999 – $2499


Video of Home Theater Projectors

If you’d rather just see the projector in action, we’ve got some video for you. We have recently added the Panasonic PT-AE4000U, BenQ W6000, and Vivitek H1080FD to our Home Theater Showroom. We’ve also taken some video of the Vivitek H1080FD, Panasonic PT-AE4000U (low quality), and Optoma HD20. We will be adding more as soon as we have a chance to do some head-to-head shootouts.

For more video, visit us on YouTube or test new projectors in our Home Theater Demo Room.

Happy Holidays from Projector People! Get Your Card and Coupon Code Here!

GIFT09 Holiday coupon code for projector people

It’s time once again for the magical holiday season! This year, along with a downloadable holiday card, we also have a special promotion as a gift to you. Find the details below or just go ahead and click here :

Free express 3-day shipping on :

You must select 3-day shipping from the drop down menu to receive the free 3-day shipping.

Free ground shipping on our popular accessories bundle which includes:

  • 106-inch fixed frame Elite screen
  • Chief universal ceiling mount
  • 25-ft. professional grade HDMI cable
  • Just 489.00 plus FREE ground shipping with coupon!

Thanks to one of our Facebook friends for this suggestion!

To get your gift from, just use coupon code GIFT09 in your shopping cart. Or, click here for details.

Our very best to you and yours!

The Projector People

Projector People group photo

Holiday Guide to Business Projector Savings

[ This is a repost of our Projector People Post Business Newsletter Tech News from December 2009 ]

It’s time once again for our Holiday Projector Buyer’s Guide. Here we try and provide some general guidelines for finding the right projector, and we include some money saving tips along the way so you can be sure you are getting the best possible value for your dollar. We’ll start with some tips on business projectors, crossover projectors, and we’ll also preview our home theater guide. And as an added bonus, we will include links to parts of our website where you can find rebates, promotions, discounts, and such. Alright. Let’s get jingling!

Projector People : Savings Places

Before we get into our technical guide, here are a few pages that might lead to savings for you. Our demo projector inventory (usually very limited use projectors), rebates and promotions, Deal of the Day, and other specials we may featured are linked below.

Alright, now that you know where to find deals, let’s talk about how to find the right projector. Projectors for business are smaller, faster (to start up and shut down), brighter, smarter, and cheaper than ever before. I know we say that ever year, but it’s still true. And hopefully it always will be. So, let’s get you up to date on what you can expect in performance and price from a business projector today.

Projector Brightness : More Lumens for You!

2500 lumens seems to be the new benchmark for entry level business projectors. Home theater projectors make up the majority of projectors under 2000 lumens. This is good news for small business buyers because it means just about any projector (no matter how cheap) will get the job done in a small room without outside light. The room may lack the cheer of sunlight, but your $399 projector will look nice and bright in that space. One notable exception would be the new pocket projectors which are drastically dimmer in the 10 to 100 lumen range

Recommended Brightness by Room Size
Room Size Minimum Lumens Suggested Price Range Estimates
Multiple Locations (portable) 3000 lumens $799-$1499
Small Conference Room 2000 lumens $499-$1299
Large Conference Room 3500 lumens $1999 – $4999
Auditorium / Classroom 4500 lumens $2499 – and up

SAVINGS TIP : Features like wireless, networking, and higher (particularly HD) resolution will add to the cost of your projector. If you don’t need ’em, don’t pay for ’em. How do you know if you need ’em or not? Ask the questions… do you have an HD source to watch HD video? Do you have a wireless compatible laptop? Do you have a network in your office? I know, simple stuff, but skipping features is your best way to save money on a projector. But then, features like lens shift, auto-keystone correction, economy modes, and others may be extras you don’t want to live without. You’ll have to determine your budget and needs, but know that there are lower-priced projectors that lack some features you might be able to live without.

Projector Resolution : Sources, Sources, Sources

The key to selecting a projector resolution is to know your source. Like any good reporter, you should investigate the who, what, where, why, when, and how you will use your projector. If your business uses primarily VHS videos (because that old training video is still on a VHS tape) then resolution is not going to be an issue. Go as cheap as possible and save some cash. But if you are viewing detailed spreadsheets or drawings from a computer, you’ll need to invest in a higher resolution. And, if you take your projectors home for the weekend and watch on your Blu-ray player, then it’s time to consider switch to an HD widescreen resolution. If you want to do all of the above and more, HD is probably still the way to go, but call a Projector Expert for some good advice.

Resolution and Recommended Usage
Resolution Recommended Usage
SVGA Only for use with older sources such as VCRs, older computers, etc.
XGA A better choice for 4:3 sources such as NTSC DVD players, many laptop computers.
WXGA Best for widescreen laptops
SXGA+ Best for applications that require high-detail
HD Best for applications with video as primary viewing
3D Best for schools, architects, engineers with that particular need. (3D is a feature on some new DLP projectors)

SAVINGS TIP : An SVGA projector might cost a hundred bucks less in the short run, but as technology progresses it may not be supported by newer sources (computers, etc.). If you have 4:3 sources, investing in XGA will be more “future-proof.”

Connection Type Good to Have Because
Dual VGA / component flexibility. Most common connection type.
HDMI Playing video. Common on newer video sources – DVD players, etc.
S-Video A back-up for older video sources. Particularly useful in school settings.

SAVINGS TIP : If you plan to sneak the projector home on weekends for some movies and gaming, an HDMI connection is a plus. However, a dual component / VGA connection will do the trick if your source (receiver, gaming system, DVD player) has component video out.

So there you have just a few of the basics of business projection. Still have questions? Call a Projector Expert for more advice and information.

Cross Over Projectors

A couple years ago there were business projectors that touted their ‘work and play’ capability. You’d hear the call to “Take this projector home on the weekends!” But more recently, there are also home theater projectors that are promoting their versatility in work environments. This usually means that they have added a VGA input, and that they are a bit more portable than other home theater projectors. Either way, if a projector has both a computer (VGA) input and an HDMI connection, you’ve probably got a projector falls into the cross over category. If you aren’t picky about specific home theater features, or having a perfect image, and you want a versatile projector, one of these might be a good choice for you.

Home Theater Projector Guide

This has been a breakthrough year for low prices in home theater projection. We have broken two barriers. Entry level true HD 1080p home theater for $999 and high-end home theater for as low as $1999. That’s good news for buyers that have been watching and waiting for lower prices.

But since the price gap has narrowed between categories, there are still questions about the “real” difference between entry level, mid-level, and high-end projection. Of course there are always questions about which projector is the best in each category. So, we will be providing you with the short answers to these questions this week, and following up on our blog next week with further detailed analysis. We’d love to do it sooner, but as of this week, we still don’t have all the contending products in stock to offer further review.

So, to start, let’s break up some of the more popular models into their respective categories. This is pretty well covered territory on our blog, but in case you haven’t been following, we’ll go through it again.

Entry Level Home Theater

Mid Level Home Theater

High End Home Theater

So, that’s the category break down for our most popular models this home theater holiday season. We’ll offer a more comprehensive breakdown next week, but for now you can use our handy Projector Comparison Tool to check them out spec for spec. We also have a couple comparison’s of these products already published on our blog. Here, here, and here.

Video of Home Theater Projectors

If you’d rather just see it for yourself, we’ve some video of some of our most popular in action. We have recently added the Panasonic PT-AE4000U, BenQ W6000, and Vivitek H1080FD to our Home Theater Showroom. We’ve also taken some video of the Vivitek H1080FD, Panasonic PT-AE4000U (low quality), and Optoma HD20. We will be adding more as soon as we have a chance to do some head-to-head shootouts.

Whew! That’s going to do it for this week, but check back our blog next week for our home theater guide and more information. And if we don’t see you before, have yourself a Happy Holiday and a Wonderous New Year!