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Types of laser projectors

Projectorpoint Explainer - Light source technologies

More and more projectors are entering the market using lamp-free light sources. These types of projectors are known as solid-state light sources, SSL, or just Laser Projectors. SSL or laser projectors are light-producing systems made up of either LED devices or Laser.

So what does this mean? Well, laser projectors are projectors with light-producing systems made up of either LED devices or laser diodes. Changing the light source brings with it many benefits. The light produced with SSL systems inherently has a longer and steadier brightness that decreases at a much slower pace over time than that of lamp-based systems. As such, this technology offers high image quality and providing an operating life span that far exceeds traditional lamp projectors.

It’s an increasingly popular choice of technology for manufacturers and consumers alike and well worth understanding if you’re in the market for a new projector.

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LED Light Source


LED was the first solid-state projector type to be commercialised around eight years ago but it is limited in light output and mainly used in specialty markets. Specifically, LED systems use only red, green and blue LEDs, which reduces the quality of the resulting images. Benefits associated with LED light sources include the small projector chassis and up to 20,000 hour life span. However, LED projectors have limited brightness capability, limited colour reproduction of yellows and a limited maximum screen size.

Laser Phosphor Light Source (DLP Display)


Laser phosphor illumination uses a blue laser diode as the light source instead of a high-intensity discharge (HID) lamp. To generate the three primary colours, the laser diode shines laser light onto a phosphor wheel to create yellow light, while blue laser light passes through an opening in the phosphor wheel. The projector then sends the yellow light through a colour wheel to generate red and green, while the blue laser light passes through a diffusion window. These red, green and blue colours are then directed onto an imaging surface, such as a DLP chip, which directs the light through a lens and onto the projection screen.

The main advantage of a laser phosphor projector is the long life of the illumination system – it will be in use for a long time before it the projector drops down to 50% brightness.

As a lampless system, laser phosphor also eliminates the need for lamp and filter replacements, reducing the downtime, maintenance and costs associated with lamp-based projectors. The long life and low maintenance of laser phosphor projectors also make this technology ideal for high-use settings like boardrooms, classrooms and location-based entertainment.

Certain manufacturers claim laser phosphor projectors provide “maintenance free” operation. Although it is true that laser phosphor illumination systems are solid-state and so do not require any maintenance throughout their lifecycle, this only applies to the light engine. Laser-based projectors should still be subject to regular maintenance such as cleaning fans and lenses to maximise efficiency and performance.

In return for a little care and attention, your DLP display laser light source projector will deliver high brightness, true colours, large screen sizes and life span of up to 20,000 hours.

Laser Phosphor Light Source (3LCD Display)


In a laser phosphor light source projector, the projector’s light engine uses a blue laser as its light source, which excites a phosphorous material and, in turn, creates white light. The white light is then delivered to a 3LCD optical system, generating constant, vibrant RGB colour through a light splitting process.

Again, this results in high brightness levels, true colours, large screen sizes, and an excellent life span of up to 20,000 hours.

RGB Laser Light Source


Pure laser, also known as 3-Primary (3P) or RGB laser, generates light directly from three individual red, green and blue lasers. The primary benefit of a RGB laser system is light output while also achieving higher performance in other standard image quality parameters such as color gamut (This makes it possible to realise a color space that reaches the amazing level of colour reproduction in the BT2020 standard), contrast ratio and dynamic range when compared to standard lamp-based systems. As such, RGB laser is ideal for large-scale applications and giant screen cinema

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