Projectors have the potential to render images with higher fidelity and at larger sizes than a traditional TV, but they used to require changes to your room setup. The days of mounting the projector in the middle of your space have come to an end with the advent of ultra short throw (UST) projectors. These devices can sit closer to the projection surface, and LG’s new CineBeam Laser 4K projector gets closer than ever. It needs just two inches of separation from the wall.
LG has announced several short throw projectors in recent years. For example, the HU80KA from CES last year that could produce a 150-inch 4K image. That device was a small tower that sat a few feet away from the projection surface, but it was easier to transport than a 150-inch TV (it even has a handle). The new CineBeam Laser 4K doesn’t take up any more space in your room than a TV because you can set it on a TV stand a few inches away from the wall.
With the minimum 2-inch clearance, the CineBeam Laser 4K can project a 90-inch 4K image. If you can increase the distance to seven inches, the size goes up to 120 inches. The projector can also output 2,500 ANSI lumens, enough for the image to look good in average indoor lighting. LG also claims it has eliminated the image distortion endemic among ultra short throw projectors with the help of a new 12-point keystone adjustment feature.
LG is planning its big reveal for CES next month, so it hasn’t released all the specs for this device. We know that it will have USB, Ethernet, and HDMI ports, which gives you plenty of options for piping in content from your devices. If it’s anything like last year’s LG projectors, it will run on the WebOS smart TV platform with support for the company’s ThinQ AI features. So, you’ll probably be able to yell at your projector to make it do things.
The big question mark is, of course, the price. Last year’s LG short throw projectors were between $ 2,000 and $ 3,000 at launch. If it can get the new UST projector anywhere near that, it will be instantly leading the pack. Hisense has UST 4K projectors starting at $ 10,000, and Dell just put its UST laser system on sale for $ 4,800 (down from $ 6,000).