It wasn’t all that long ago that 4K projectors simply didn’t exist – and even once they did, they were expensive. That has been changing rather rapidly, with prices quickly falling, to the point that they’re as affordable as TVs. Nowhere is this more evident than Optoma’s new UHL55 4K UHD Smart Projector, which it unveiled this week to coincide with the CEDIA 2018 expo in San Diego.
The Optoma UHL55 gets its smarts from its integrated voice control, which can be used with either Google Home or Amazon Alexa. The voice control lets you power the projector on and off, change inputs, adjust volume, and control the integrated media player. As for specs, the UHL55 provides up to 1,500 lumens of brightness and a contrast ratio of 250,000:1. Support for high dynamic range (HDR) is included, in the form of the HDR10 spec, but not for Dolby Vision. This projector was originally announced at CES 2018 in January, but it’s nice to see that it will soon be available.
Optoma also announced the availability of the UHD51ALV, which is an updated version of the previous UHD51A model. The UHD51ALV offers higher brightness — up to 3,000 lumens — to perform better in environments with higher levels of ambient light. The updated model also features an RGBWRGBW color wheel and support for Google Home.
Aside from the new 4K models, Optoma also launched several new 1080p models, including the LH150 and LV130 compact projectors, which are battery powered and can go anywhere you can. The LH150 and LV130 provide up to 1,300 and 300 lumens of brightness respectively, and while that may not be impressive compared to the 4K models, being able to set them up anywhere is a handy feature. This models retail for $900 for the LH150 and $280 for the LV130.
The Optoma UHL55 sells for $1,500, and will be shipping later this month, as will the UHD51ALV, which will retail for $1,800. Both projectors are currently available for pre-order via B&H Photo, but will be available at a number of retailers after launch including Amazon, Fry’s, Beach Camera, and ProjectorScreen.com. If you’re not sure whether a projector or a TV is best for your needs, take a look at our guide comparing the two to help you make a decision.