4:3 vs 16:9 Projector screen: Difference & Which is best format?

Last updated by Nitish_Lakra on January 14, 2023

4:3 vs 16:9 Projector screen: Difference & Which is best format?

If you are choosing the new projector screen. Then you might have seen the different aspect ratios of the projector screen. And 4:3 and 16:9 can be one of them. We compare both the aspect ratio 4:3 vs 16:9 projector screen.

To know which projector screen aspect ratio is best for you. For your present and home theatre and future, for entertainment purposes.

And also learn about the golf simulator setup. Which aspect ratios are best at the end of the article and many other things. But before that let’s know what the aspect ratio is.

What is the aspect ratio?

The width and the height of the projector screen are called the aspect ratio. For example, if the projector screen aspect ratio is 4:3. That means the projector screen width will be the 4 and the 3 will be the height of the projector screen.

What is a 4:3 projector screen? 

4:3 projector screen pixel structure

Those projector screens have a width of 4 and a screen height of 3. 4:3 projector screens by the NTSC academy. This is known as the standard TV screen aspect ratio.

This projector screen aspect ratio was used for decades. In past days many Hollywood movies are shot in this aspect ratio. And this aspect ratio is vastly used those days. 

4:3 not only as of the standard tv aspect ratio. But it is also used in the cinema projector. And also in the computer monitor. This is also used for the golf simulator. 

4:3 aspect ratio is very old. But still, there is the best 4:3 aspect ratio projector available. This aspect ratio also can be expressed by 1.33 or 1.33:1.

And there is a reason behind that. When you divide the 4 by 3. Then you will get 1.33 as a result.

And this aspect ratio was invented by Thomas Edison, and by one of his chief assistants William L.K. Dickson. 

What is a 16:9 projector screen?

Explain 16x9 projector screen

Now at the present day. 16:9 projector screen ratios are the most popular projector screen aspect ratio. These projector screens have a width of 16 units and a height of 9 units.

This is the high-definition TV aspect ratio. Which is widely accepted by various countries. For the High definition TV aspect ratio.

Today there are various video platforms. Have the video content in the 16:9 ratio. And most games come in the 16:9 ratio. This screen format is developed by the society of motion picture and engineering.

As of 2009, it is very famous. The 16:9 aspect ratio can be also expressed as 1.77. Because if 16 is simply divided by 9 then its result will be 1.77.

Which is better: 4:3 or 16:9?

4:3 projector screen ratio is old. Which is not usable at the present. And maybe in the future. It’s a typical standard TV screen aspect ratio.

If you are thinking of buying the 4:3 aspect ratio projector screen. Then mostly I have seen this type of aspect ratio used in the golf simulator. 

If you are about to set up the projector screen in the home theatre or the living room. I will never suggest going with the 4:3 aspect ratio.

The best option will be to go with the 16:9 ratio. Because these days you will get a lot of content options to project on the 16:9 aspect ratio screen. Using the native projector 16:9 aspect ratio using the native 16:9 aspect ratio content.

And you will get various options to choose from from the native 16:9 aspect ratio projector. So if you go with the 16:9 aspect ratio. Then you will get a lot of options while choosing the projector. And also during choosing the projector screen. With the 4:3 aspect ratio, you will get fewer options.

So I will suggest you go with the 16:9 aspect ratio projector screen. 

Read Also: How to use a projector as a TV for everyday entertainment?

Can I watch both aspect ratios on one screen? 

Yes, you can watch both aspect ratios on one screen. On the 4:3 you can project 4:3 as well as 16:9. Or on the 16:9 aspect ratio, you can project 4:3.

It’s ok when you project the 4:3 on 4:3 or 16:9 on 16:9. But when projecting the 4:3 on 16:9 or 16:9 on 4:3. 

During projecting the 4:3 on the 16:9. You will get the top and bottom black piller. Which does not look appropriate. 

And then if you project 16:9 on the 4:3. You will get the two pillars vertically on both sides. 

So always and project in the row buy native projector 16:9 or 4:3 >> on 16:9 or 4:3 projector screen > using the 16:9 or 4:3 content on the screen.

4:3 or 16:9: For gaming, which is best?

There could be various reasons to choose or avoid both the aspect ratio. And lots of things come with the experience. So you can not tell if one of them is good or bad. 

But there are some things you can consider. While choosing the 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratio. Visibility on the screen and refresh rate. 

When you play a game like CSGO on the 4:3 aspect ratio you will get the zoomed screen. And you will get the enemies with the gun easily. You can easily spot the enemies. Because you get the screen zoomed.

But when it comes to the 16:9 aspect ratio. Then you will get the wide viewing angle of your screen. Very good. Not the boxy effect on the screen like the 4:3. Basically in the 16:9, you will get more the field of view on the 16:9 aspect ratio.

Let’s talk about some performance on both the screen aspect ratio. On the 4:3 screen aspect ratio. You will get a better refresh rate in comparison to 16:9. If your screen refresh rate is not good enough then you can try the 4:3.

It can give you some advantages. While playing games. All these things come with the experience. If you have a chance to try both aspect ratios. Then I will suggest that you first try both. Which makes you feel comfortable while playing the games.

And don’t forget that if you place the 4:3 games on the 16:9. You will get the horizontal side-by-side black bars. And with the 16:9 game on the 4:3 screen. You will find two black bars vertically.

Conclusion: 4:3 vs 16:9 Projector screen.

So basically the 4:3 aspect ratio is an old-school TV screen format. The 16:9 aspect ratio is a new school TV screen format. So if you want the Present video content on full screen.

Without losing any resolution and brightness. Then go with the 16:9 aspect ratio. Unless you want to use the projector for a golf simulator. And for the business. 

If you are searching for the best projector and screen with the native 4:3 aspect ratio. Then there are some great options available for you. You can check it out below.

That’s all I have to say on the 4:3 vs 16:9 Projector screen.

Feature Image Credit.

Matt Zimmerman


Nitish Lakra is a writer and editor with over a decade of experience in the publishing industry. He has written for numerous publications on a variety of topics including home theatre and projector. Nitish is passionate about educating and informing readers through his writing and strives to provide accurate and engaging content. When he's not writing, Nitish is enjoying the pc games, movies or cooking. My YouTube: @nitishlakra My Instagram: @nitish__lakra


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