Who doesn’t love the camaraderie of a live game? While some may visit the pub because certain key fixtures are only screened on subscription-only channels, others are simply drawn by the experience of watching sports with their friends at their favourite pub or bar.
The atmosphere of a live fixture, spent in the company of other avid fans, is hard to describe to the uninitiated, and only really compares to actually physically attending a match, tournament or contest. But if you’re reading this article and have run a pub or bar for any significant amount of time, you know all this already.
We’re here to help you choose the best projector to give your customers a fantastic experience and atmosphere. So read on for a list of the best projectors for pubs and bars in 2019 as well as a quick roundup of the top features you need to consider to make the best choice.
First, just a quick reminder that 2019 is set to be a BIG year in sport… here are some of the top sport events in 2019.
|6 April:||Horse racing - The Grand National, Aintree|
|11 - 14 April:||Golf - The Masters, Augusta|
|13 April:||Boxing - Anthony Joshua world heavyweight title fight, Wembley Stadium|
|4 May:||Football - Women's FA Cup final, Wembley Stadium|
|18 May:||Football - FA Cup final, Wembley Stadium|
|30 May - 15 July:||Cricket - World Cup, England|
|1 June:||Football - Champions League final, Madrid|
|6 June:||Football - Nations League semi-final: England v Netherlands|
|7 June - 7 July:||Football - Women's World Cup, France|
|1 - 14 July:||Tennis - Wimbledon|
|6 - 28 July:||Cycling - Tour de France|
|12 - 14 July:||Formula 1 - British Grand Prix, Silverstone|
|12 - 21 July:||Netball - World Cup, Liverpool|
|18 - 21 July:||Golf - The Open, Royal Portrush|
|1 Aug - 16 Sept:||Cricket - Ashes Test series: England v Australia|
|20 Sept - 2 Nov:||Rugby union - World Cup, Japan|
|21 - 29 Sept:||Cycling - Road World Championships, Yorkshire|
|28 Sept - 6 Oct:||Athletics - World Championships, Doha|
This year, there’s already been a tonne of important events taking place and as better weather comes our way, there’s so much more to follow. Whether your punters are into the tennis at Wimbledon, the Grand Prix at Silverstone or the football at Wembley, you’ll want to make sure you’re offering the spectacular image quality the experience deserves with a well-chosen, high-performing pub or bar projector.
The expectations of most punters have changed over the last few years. Firstly, most people have large TVs at home with impressive sound systems installed. To get them off the sofa and into your bar, you’ll need to offer them an experience that beats their home set-ups. We’ve outlined the major features you need to prioritise if you’re hoping to draw in the crowds with the best projector for sports bars or pub projectors 2019.
You’ll need a minimum 3,000 lumens brightness for a 2.5m wide screen. That’s just a fact. Anything less and you risk dim images that can’t compete with any ambient lighting from windows or entrances. Larger screens will require more brightness to ensure that the image quality is as clear as it needs to be for those all-important sporting occasions.
Taking the brightness output to over 5,000 lumens is a wise move if you’re projecting where there are multiple windows, skylights, in any kind of outdoor or marquee setting. Here, natural light will filter through and dilute the contrast of your images. For more on brightness requirements for different settings, take a look at how bright your projector should be.
All the models recommended in this article are chosen for their delivery of good video performance. This is something you really can’t sacrifice when it comes to projecting sporting events where rapid motion and fast changing angles are so abundant. Having a high resolution plays a large part in securing this capability, offering more pixels per square inch, letting your customers really focus in on the details that matter.
Pubs and bars come in all shapes and sizes. You may manage a standard high street pub with plenty of wall space for a decent sized projector screen, or you may be in some kind of quirky conversion with several pillars and unmovable features that could block viewers from seeing the screen.
To negotiate awkward spaces, having a decent horizontal and vertical lens shift is important; this will let you reposition the lens within the projector housing, which means that the projector can be sat off-centre (left, right, up or down from the screen) and still project a square image without having to resort to keystone – which affects the clarity.
Most projectors these days come with a huge amount of functionality, in terms of connectivity and cables. The most important thing is that you can connect things like Sky or Freeview to your projector, but you may also want to live stream game off the internet.
We’ve picked out projectors for this list that are more than capable of delivering the functionality for your purposes, but if you want to explore more about overall functionality – perhaps if your bar doubles as a meeting or event space on certain nights – then check out our advice guide on cables and connections or speak to one of our friendly staff for more information.
Finally, we believe that models that now come with HDBaseT input connectivity offer a great advantage to certain bars and pubs that need extremely high-quality content over a longer cable distance, with minimal fuss. This massively reduces the cost and complications that come with installation.
This isn’t always a must, but if you want your projector to power through for as long as possible after you install it, laser is the way to go. You’ll essentially be getting greater reliability and lower maintenance requirements compared to standard bulb projectors.
If you want to learn more about the bulb vs laser argument, don’t hesitate to ask. We love breaking it down for our customers.
So without further ado, read on for our top 3 the best projectors for pubs and bars!
Lastly, remember that as a pub or sports bar that shows live screenings, you’re always up against competition, whether it’s the live matches themselves, better home cinema experiences, or even the bar across the road. If you let yourself fall behind, you’re doing so at your own peril!