제품

What is a solid-state projector?

When talking about solid-state illumination, we usually mean Laser diodes and LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes). These are semiconductor devices that emit light when current flows through them. This opposes the traditional electric lights used: incandescent bulbs or fluorescent tubes.

What is a solid-state projector?

The traditional illumination technology used in projectors are arc lamps. Although they were dominant for many years, they have a number of throwbacks, especially when it comes to efficiency. They consume quite a lot of energy and needed regular replacement (with high costs for new lamps, recalibration, etc.). When more efficient solid-state technologies emerged, they were quickly replaced.

When talking about solid-state illumination, we usually mean Laser diodes and LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes). These are semiconductor devices that emit light when current flows through them. This opposes the traditional electric lights used: incandescent bulbs or fluorescent tubes.

Read more about lamp vs. laser projectors in this article

What is the difference between RGB laser and laser-phosphor illumination? 

When talking about laser projection, we can distinguish between RGB laser and laser phosphor light sources. RGB laser consists of an individual red, green and blue laser. For laser phosphor, one or 2 colors are created by sending the color onto a phosphor. This can be done using static phosphors, or by using a phosphor wheel. 

Read more about laser phosphor vs. RGB laser projectors in this article

What are the benefits of solid-state illumination in projectors? 

Laser and LED light sources offer several big advantages over the traditional lamp-based projectors.

  • First of all the lifetime of the light source is a lot longer. Incandescent light bulbs for brighter projectors (30,000 lumen for example) are restricted to about 500 hours. Less bright lights can last longer, but never even come close to solid-state sources, which vary from 20,000 hours to 50,000 hours - which means that (depending on the use) in a lot of cases you never need to replace the light source. This significantly reduces the total cost of ownership.
  • With respect to light output, lamp projectors were limited to about 35.000lm.  For truly bright projection, you need an RGB laser light source. These beasts effortlessly reach 75,000 lumens and more!
  • Also, they allow a better color gamut than lamp projectors. This ensures an optimal image quality and performance.
  • As mentioned, LED illumination excels in efficiency. This means that it needs a lot less power for the same light output. This is not only beneficial for the environment, but also lowers the energy cost – making it an important factor!
  • In some cases, the projector is not integrated in a static environment. In a simulator on a motion platform, for example, the projector needs to endure a lot of vibration and shocks. It's easy to see that a solid-state illumination source is a lot more rugged than a lamp with brittle glass tubes and long thin filament wires.

Which projector to use for your application?

Today, lamp-based projectors are rarely used in professional applications anymore. The disadvantages regarding lifetime and power consumption are too significant.

The choice of light source is depending on the needs of the customer and the application. Barco has all technologies in house to deliver the solution the customer needs, and we are not limited to one type of light source. That is why we can really offer customers with the technology that best suits their needs, regardless of portfolio.

Indoor or outdoor projection mapping applications need the brightest projectors. Using an RGB laser or laser phosphor light source, these high intensity projections are feasible (with RGB laser serving the brightest applications, and laser phosphor the mid-bright). Both 3DLP and 1DLP products are applicable.

When customers need a very large color gamut to display, then RGB light sources are most suited, which are capable to deliver Rec2020 color space for special use cases. Furthermore, they can also deliver P3 color space for digital cinema applications.

But also, a more cost-effective light source, like 1DLP products with a laser phosphor light source, can guarantee the impeccable image quality. It all depends on your needs, so it’s best to talk to an expert about your expectations.

Some applications require projectors that were designed specifically for the task. Simulators with a motion platform, for example. The brutal forces unleashed on the projector are just too much or many models. So, it’s best to check this ability upfront!