A good business projector can make meetings run smoother, breathe life into presentations, and even make static content more engaging.

By Timothy Wilson, business account manager: VI at Epson South Africa

This technology has come a long way since the days of overhead projectors. Projectors can now display content just as brightly and as vividly as flat panel displays, but onto much larger surfaces, and don’t require numerous circuits and hardware to install.

Whether its high-definition content, wireless connectivity or clear imagery – projectors have become critical business tools that utilise the newest technology to offer a good return on investment. Here are some features you need to look for when choosing your next business projector.

Do back-to-back offsite meetings describe a “typical day in the office”?

Business people who are always on the go should look for an ultra-slim, ultra-light projector that can fit into a laptop bag. These models have been specially designed for mobility and will help bring presentations to life with large, clear content, no matter the location.

Most portable projectors can be mounted just about anywhere, with most of them offering wireless capabilities. This makes setting up in different meeting rooms hassle-free. Best of all, models like the Epson EB-X49 don’t let portability compromise image quality, and still promise bright, sharp images and low maintenance.

What screen resolution does your office or meeting space require?

The next factor to consider is whether the projector is for an intimate meeting space with a small screen or a conference room with a larger screen.

Projectors are available in a range of resolutions, from WXGA to 720p, 1080p, and even 4K-UHD. Intimate huddle spaces can benefit from a small WXGA (1280 x 800 pixels) resolution, while larger meeting rooms will require a 1080p (1920 x 1080) high-definition projector. Graphically demanding content, in larger spaces, will require a projector with 4K ultra-high-definition display capabilities.

Will presenters require short or long throw projectors?

Often overlooked when purchasing a business projector, but as important as resolution, is the distance between the projector and the projection surface.

The most common throw distances are:

* Standard throw – this requires more distance between the projector and the projection surface to produce an image. Although cost-effective, standard throw projectors have their fair share of challenges, including the amount of space required, and shadows when people walk between the projector and the projection screen, depending on the environment and application, of course.

* Short throw – this is ideal for presenters who prefer being closer to the projection screen without having the projector’s glare in their eyes. Short throw projectors are great for confined spaces like small meeting rooms that don’t permit enough throw distance for a standard projector.

* Ultra-short throw projectors are one of the newer concepts in projection technology. Ultra-short throw projectors can be positioned right up against the screen, while still producing a large image. These projectors leave no room for foot traffic passing between projector and screen, which means there are no awkward shadows cast by people arriving at or leaving a presentation.

Do meetings usually require multiple presenters connecting their devices?

Investing in a projector with wireless connectivity is a must if you want to avoid instances where meetings were brought to a halt while waiting for one presenter to disconnect from the projector, and then waiting for the next presenter to connect their device.

Wireless projectors, like Epson’s EB-992F and EB-FH52, can simultaneously connect multiple devices, avoiding time wasted while presenters hand over to one another.

There’s no “one size fits all” approach to purchasing an office projector, so it’s important for business decision-makers to identify their office requirements before settling on their next purchase.