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The best projectors for immersive sports viewing

Coming off the exhilaration of March Madness and moving into a long season of NBA and NHL playoffs, MLB games and Champions League Futbol matches, watching sports is a daily occurrence in my home right now. While we can only hope that the next few months are filled with buzzer beaters and shootouts, triple plays and hat tricks, we can make sure that our viewing experience is a close second to sitting courtside regardless of the score.

A few weeks ago, I was at a local Brooklyn sports bar, watching the epic ending to the Auburn vs. UVA Final Four matchup, and I noticed that I was more engaged in the game than ever before. I was holding my breath, on the edge of my seat, watching those last few seconds anxiously peeking through my fingers covering my eyes. I have no real connection to Auburn or UVA, and my bracket was already busted. So what was it about this viewing experience that had me so deeply captivated? An incredible projector.

When I watch sports, I want to feel like I’m part of the action. I want to see the emotion on the athletes’ faces and the sweat on their brows. I want the picture to be so sharp and the screen to be so large that I can make the calls that instant replay is meant for. I also want to have this experience at the neighborhood bar or in my own home. That’s where a great projector comes in.

Projectors put you on the field, right up against the ice, above the dugout, without shelling out hundreds or sometimes thousands of dollars multiple times a year for those can’t-beat seats. They give you the opportunity to watch the game on a huge 100 inch plus screen, with 4k resolution and no need to pay $12 for a beer. And as technology has advanced, it's possible to purchase a 4k projector without breaking the bank. But here’s the thing; not all 4k projectors are created equal when it comes to building the sports-watching experience of your dreams, and it can be overwhelming and time consuming to search through the countless options available.

That’s why we did the work for you and came up with this list of high-quality 4k projectors, all at an incredibly reasonable price that are ideal for watching sports:

Flexible Budget

For when your pricepoint is flexible, and you’re looking for something special:

Sony VPL-VW295ES: This projector is native 4k, which is even better than the typical 4k projectors on the market. Native 4k offers the most clarity out there at 8.8 million pixels. That’s the same resolution that you get in movie theater projectors, and now you can bring that same clarity into your home. Sony offers a variety of native 4K projectors, and this is the entry level of the bunch, at the most affordable price point. With the ability to watch IMAX movies on this projector, you’ll have little reason to ever pay for entertainment again!

Dark Room

Epson Home Cinema 5050UB

For those with dark rooms perfect for an in-home theater:

Epson Home Cinema 5050UB:  Brand new on the market, this projector is perfect as a dual movie and sports projector. Everything you watch on this projector will put you right in the middle of the action. At $2,999 it doesn’t come cheap, but the investment is worth it for years of epic entertainment. With 2600 lumens, it’s brightness, color and picture accuracy are astonishing in dark rooms, and also offers a solid sports viewing experience in brighter rooms, ensuring you get the perfect viewing experience no matter what or where you’re watching.

Great Quality On A Budget

Epson Home Cinema 4010: At $1,999 this projector offers the same 4k clarity and fantastic color as the previous Epson mentioned, but with 2400 lumens instead of 2600. This slightly affects the contrast but isn’t too noticeable. A great choice for sports fans looking to watch on a large screen in their dark or lightly lit home theaters.

Sports Viewing

BenQ TK800 Front

BenQ TK800: This projector is the perfect choice as it has specific settings for football and other sports, as well as modes for numerous other types of content. At 3,000 lumens it’s very bright, and tends to work best in rooms that don’t have perfect light control. With this brightness, you can get a massive screen, larger than 100 inches without sacrificing much in terms of color. At $1,099 the price is incredibly fair for the quality achieved. For the best viewing experience, we recommend using an ALR (ambient light rejecting) screen with this projector.

Paired with a giant screen for a life size viewing experience, these projectors set you up for an immersive experience made for the best time of year in sports. Stock up on popcorn on crackerjacks, beer and lemonade, and hurry up and get shopping for the perfect sports projector.

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