Video Projectors and Console Gaming

If you don’t know the difference between console gaming and PC gaming, then you are probably not a gamer. More than likely you also play games on a console (PS3, XBox 360, Wii, etc.) more frequently than on a PC. Therefore, the newest article from Projector Central on gaming and projectors will probably more relevant to you than the last, which was dedicated to PC Gaming. So Let’s look at what they talked about and how it might be relevant in your projector loving life.

Here’s a blurb on the difference between PC and Console gaming:

Personal computers have several unique features that separate them from console games. PCs typically output via VGA or DVI, while consoles are more likely to use component or HDMI. Game consoles are typically limited to video resolutions, such as 480p, 720p, or 1080i/p, and PCs are much more flexible in this regard.

Moreover, even the consoles themselves are different from one another. The three current generation consoles (Microsoft Xbox 360, Sony Playstation 3, and Nintendo Wii) have different optimal resolutions, meaning that a projector good for one will not necessarily be good for another.

You can see there is a lot to cover on this topic. To start Projector Central breaks down it’s reviews by gaming console. Starting with the XBox 360.

Projectors for the Microsoft Xbox360
… With the prevalence of 720p content and the relative absence of 1080p games and movies, the Xbox 360 is a perfect match for a 720p projector.

720p projectors are widespread, and some now cost less than $1,000, like the excellent Mitsubishi HC1500 (unfortunately discontinued, so get yours while you still can). Others, like Panasonic’s AX200, Sanyo’s PLV-Z5, and Epson’s Cinema 720, cost about $1,300 and offer longer zoom lenses and lens shift capability. All of these projectors have both component and HDMI inputs. If you’re not in a hurry, consider waiting for the Sanyo Z60 to become available, which is Sanyo’s new 720p projector and the successor to the Z5…

Now on to the Sony PS3, a more robust console that will work well with a true HD (1080p) projector. We agree on this one fully.

Sony Playstation 3
…All models of the PS3 released have HDMI 1.3 as well as the option for component video. Thanks to a firmware update, the PS3 now supports 1080p/24 for Blu-Ray movies. And while most games are still 720p, there are a significant number of games in native 1080p – as well as the entire catalog of Blu-Ray movies. In addition to all of this, the PS3 is an excellent upconverting DVD player by all accounts, and it can also play back many video formats from the onboard hard drive…

Due to the widespread availability of 1080p content for the Playstation 3, it makes sense to pair the system with a 1080p projector. This allows you to display Blu-Ray movies at their native resolution, play any native 1080p games you have at their native resolution, and upscale any DVDs you play to 1080p very cleanly. With 1080p projectors like the Sanyo Z2000 and Mitsubishi HC4900, 1080p can be had for roughly $2,000. However, if you have the budget for a higher-end 1080p projector such as the Optoma HD80 or Panasonic AE2000, you will likely notice the improvement.

The last console mentioned is the family friendly Wii. As you might expect Projector Central recommends a native 480p projector first, but as we would also want to mention, if you want to use your projector for a movie once in awhile, a 720p projector will get you more for your money, with just as little as $100 bucks more. There is a lot about the Wii in their article, here’s a quick take :

Nintendo Wii
…the Wii outputs all games at a maximum of 480p over component video, and has options for 4:3 or 16:9 display. It also has no DVD player function, limiting its use to purely gaming. As such, the Wii is a good match for a 480p projector, though there are only two still in production in the United States…

… While the Wii can reach its full potential using nothing more than a 480p projector, there are still good reasons to make the jump to 720p. If you plan to use your projector with an HD cable box or Blu-Ray player, or have plans to obtain them in the future, it makes sense to get a budget 720p projector like the Mitsubshi HC1500 now. In the world of projectors, 854×480 is on its way out.

If you are a technical type, you may be aware that you can now “hack” your Wii to play DVDs. Not that we are recommending that here, but consider it a footnote for those who are interested, motivated, and savvy.

There is more information in the Projector Central article, so check it out here.

Projector People links to products mentioned:

1080p Projectors

720p Projectors

We would link to the 480p projectors, but we no longer carry them. There may be new 408p projectors released some day soon, but not to our knowledge. The trend seems to be for higher resolution products.

That’s all for now! Watch for more posts on new products and tech stories!

[ Read the entire article on console gaming and projectors from Projector Central ]