Laser projector vs Lamp vs LED: What is best and the difference?

Last updated by Nitish_Lakra on January 14, 2023

Laser projector vs Lamp vs LED: What is best and the difference?

When you are choosing the new projector. Then you may have heard about the three light sources LED, Laser and Lamp. It can also be described as a lamp and lamp-free projector. These are the primarily light sources in modern projectors.

In this article, we talk about all these three light source LEDs, Laser, and Lamp. And know which is best for your daily use and occasional use.

By judging them on various factors. So let’s get started with knowing what is the difference between Laser, Lamp, and LED. For quick over view check out below table. Or you can read further lot’s of detailed stuff is available.

LED/Laser Projectors

Lamp-lit projector

Long life of 20,000 hoours.

Expected lifspan of 1,500 to 6,000 hours.

No need any maintence for 20,000 hors life.

13 lamp change in the 20,000 hours.

Power effecient, energy freindly, operate are less power, require less evergy.

Run at 100% power requirement. Result produce a lot of heat.

No time need for on/off. Instant turn on and off.

Need time for the warm up and warm down. Which need extra power.

Consume power according to content is projected.

Always runs at maximum power.

Power consumtion in standard mode: 271w.       Eco mod: 193w.

Power consumtion is 233w to 490w. Average 350w.

Brightness descrease is linear.

Brightness descrease regressive.

Most stable and long lasting brightness.

Bulb lifespan is half. When bulb projector is use at it's full.

Noise production is minimal.

Fan contantaly spin to cool down the projector.

Laser vs Lamp vs LED: What is the difference?

Color and Contrast 

In terms of the color and the contrast in the home cinema projector. Lamp based projector will be a great option. Because with the lamp-based projector. You will get great color production on the screen. And the black levels are also great with the lamp projector.

In this aspect the laser and LED projector lack somewhere. In comparison to the lamp projector. 

Rainbow effect

If you have a projector light source Laser and Lamp. With color wheel technology. Then you will experience the rainbow effect on your projector without any doubt. 

If you have the LED projector. There are chances you will not get the rainbow effect. Because LED projectors don’t use the color wheel technology. For more read this article on the projector rainbow effect.


All the light sources lose their brightness with time. But here the question is that. Which light source loses its brightness early. Laser/LED and Lamp. 

Here lamp-based projector brightness decrease is regressive decay. This means when a lamp projector is used in the initial hours of its lamp life. Its brightness decreases by 50%. When you use the lamp-based projector at its full capacity. You will get the half-life of the lamp.

LED/Laser-based projectors are completely different from the lamp projector. LED and Laser projector brightness decay is linear. This means if you have an LED and laser projector. Then its brightness will not decrease aggressively.

The brightness decrease is steady. Or you can understand Laser. And LED projectors lose their brightness slowly in comparison to the lamp projector. For a better understanding, you can see the chart below.

Laser projector, Lamp, LED brightness decay graph
Image by


An average lamp projector life is 1,500 to 6,000. While the LED and Laser average life is 20,000. If you like to use the projector 7 to 8 hours a day. Then you can use the projector for almost decades.

While the Lamp projector will burn out soon. And lose its 50% brightness in its initial hours of use. Because of the long life of Laser/LED chosen by the consumer.

On and Off time 

The lamp projector needs to warm at a certain amount of temperature. To work properly otherwise the projector will start flicker

So every time you use the lamp projector. You have to wait for the projector to warm up the projector. And also you have to wait to cool down the projector. When you turn off the projector. Even after you off the projector. Projector fan will spin. To cool down the projector.

Imagine if a lamp projector is used in the university or school. Teachers have to be on and off the projector many times. Before starting the class and after the class every time.

While there is no on and off time with the Laser/LED projector. In the Laser and LED projector. You will get the instant on and off time. No need to wait for the warm-up time and cool-down time.

Lifetime Cost

Any projector you are going to buy. There are two types of investment on the projector. When you initially buy the projector and after that. You will need to spend money to maintain the projector.

When initially looking at the price of Laser and Lamp projector. No doubt the laser projector is more pricey than the lamp projector. But only initially. When you think further.

You will get that lamp projector will be heavier for your pocket. Because the lifespan laser projector provides you. You won’t get in the lamp projector for 20,000 hours. 

Lamp’s average life is 1,500 to 6,000. So now think and compare both projector life. And when you get to compare both projector light source life. 

If you want to use the lamp projector for as long as the laser projector. Then you have to change the bulb many times. For that, you have to spend on the new bulb. And also you have to pay the professional. Who will change the bulb?


The lamp used in the lamp-based projector is a UHP lamp. This type of lamp needs a certain amount of temperature to work properly. And when the lamp is used it’s also producing heat and to produce heat there will also be for the airflow.

And their air filter. With the air, there will also be dust that will get into the projector. For that, you have to also clean the air filter. So your projector can run properly.

The laser/LED projector is virtually maintenance-free. But that does not mean you have just left the projector. And do not care about the projector. But the maintenance in comparison of lamp projector. 

Less work you have to do in the laser projector. If you have hung up the laser projector with the ceiling. Then you don’t need to worry about projector maintenance. 

There is various short-throw projector used in the school hung up with the ceiling. So staff doesn’t need to worry about the projector life as well the maintenance of the projector. Otherwise, it will be very hassle to operate the projector.

Laser vs Lamp vs LED: Which is better or best?

What do you expect from your projector? Because of Laser, LED and Lamp projector. They have their expertise in various aspects.

Like laser projectors, they have a long life. Instant-on and off. No need to pay attention to the maintenance of the projector. And the lifetime cost is great. 

While traditional projector UHP lamp. Give you great color production, contrast ratio, and black level.

In comparison to the laser projector. Otherwise, the laser projector also has a brighter image than the traditional lamp.

If you expect a long life from your projector. And you can’t afford the laser projector. Then you go with the LED projector.

LED projector also provides you with long life like the laser projector. But the problem with the LED projector is that. The LED projector can’t provide a bright image like the laser and lamp projector.

If you are still confused don’t worry ahead we will see. The pros and cons of LED/Laser and Lamp projector.

Best laser projector:-

  1. Optoma CinemaX P2
  2. Optoma GT1090HDR
  4. Epson EF-100
  5. LG HU810PW
  6. LG HU85LA
  7. Epson EpiqVision Ultra LS50
  8. BenQ V7050i
  9. LG HU715QW
  10. Epson Home Cinema LS11000

If you want to buy one of these projector. You can read our complete review of best laser projector.

Advantages and Disadvantages 

If you are still confused about which projector you should choose. Lamp or LED or Laser. Then there are the advantages and disadvantages of the projector.

Pros and Cons of Laser/LED

  1. Pros
  2. Most show off things you will get with the laser or led projector that have a long life. You won’t get in other light sources.
  3. Brightness in the laser/led projector decreases very slowly. So with the long life of the projector. You are also getting a bright image for a long time.
  4. If I have a place to use the projector in school or even at home. You don’t need to wait for the projector to warm up. Or you have to wait for the projector to cool down. When you turn off the projector. That’s how a laser projector acts like a tv. Reason short-throw projector also called laser tv. And use also short throw projector used as a tv in various media or living rooms
  5. Initially, the laser projector is very pricey in comparison to its competitors. But when we calculate the lifetime cost of the laser projector. Then the laser projector’s high price was worth it.
  6. Laser projector maintenance is virtually free. 
  7. This advantage could not be related to home cinema. But it’s important to know. The laser projector is used in the oral cancer cure. To extract the images describing the spatial grey distribution. Here laser pico projector is used to scan. Because it has the advantage of high intensity, directivity, mono-color. With low bandwidth, and coherence. For more, you can read this research paper.
  1. Cons
  2. The laser projector is not affordable by the many home theater projector enthusiasts. If you go and research for the best home theater projector. Then under 1000$ dollars, you will get the best lamp movie projector. But on the laser projector, you have to spend at least 2000$ to 3000$ dollar to get the best laser projector.
  3. You can’t change the laser projector laser diode by yourself like the lamp projector. Because a laser projector light source is a focused beam of light. And you will need to do the very precise alignment. Which can’t be done by the normal folks. 

Pros and Cons of Lamp 

  1. Pros
  2. The price is very affordable in comparison to the laser projector. 
  3. You can replace the projector lamp when it’s dead. And to be sure you can check if your projector lamp is good or bad.
  4. If you do not use the projector regularly then a lamp projector is perfect for you.
  5. Color and black levels are great on the lamp projector. And it’s perfect for the home theater projector.
  1. Cons
  2. Lamp projectors are sophisticated in the comparison of the laser projector. You have to take care of the projector and have to do regular maintenance. For that, clean the projector air filter.
  3. Lamp projectors lamps are very pricey. Especially authorized one. And every time your lamp will die. You have to pay for the lamp. As well as a technician. Who change the bulb.
  4. Initially lamp projector lamp color and brightness will be good. But with time everything will change. Color and brightness will fade away.

Conclusion: Laser projector vs lamp.

If you have enough money to invest in the laser projector. I will suggest you go with the laser projector. It will be a good investment. You can use your projector as a tv in your living room. 

And there will be barriers like the ambient light. Because most of the laser projectors that I use in the living room. Are an ultra-short throw projector.

And they are bright enough. And also you can use the ALR projector screen for the ultra-short-throw projector.

Or if you can’t buy the laser projector. You can choose the LED projector.

And if you have planned to use the special for the home theater room then a lamp projector will be a good choice.

That’s all I have to say in laser projector vs lamp vs LED.

See you next time…



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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