A Midsummer Night's Screen: The Best Outdoor Projectors

A drive-in movie buff takes tech for a backyard test run
By Clay Dillow,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2008 8:26 PM CDT
A girl extends her hand to touch a whale shark, whose image is projected onto a screen.   (Getty Images)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – Though the drive-in movie theater has gone the way of the buffalo, Barry Sonnenfeld writes in Esquire, with the right projector you can recreate the outdoor film experience in your back yard. But take notice: A projector is only as good as the screen it’s projecting on, so make sure it’s quality. The three best for outdoor use:

  • The Epson Movie Mate 72: This 15-pounder has everything necessary built in and inputs for everything that’s unnecessary, but it was bright enough only in total darkness.
  • Optoma HD71: The smallest of the group, its slim profile makes it easy to carry, but it sacrifices brightness and sharpness for manageable size.
  • Panasonic PT-AX200U: This was the only one that didn’t require complete darkness, and its versatile zoom lens creates big images at close proximities.