TV's Answer Man
Long Does a TV Projector Lamp Last?
Washington, D.C. (January 27, 2013) --
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questions regarding how to best use the latest products and
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Q. I've been
thinking of building my own Home Theater with a projector rather
than a traditional TV. But I hear that projector lamps don't
last very long. Is that true? -- Carl, Boston, Massachusetts.
Carl, it depends on your
definition of "very long." But generally speaking, a LCD
projector lamp should last between 2,000 and 3,000 hours of
viewing. That holds true for a Home Theater lamp or a lamp for a
Of course, that number can vary. Like any kind of bulb, it might go
dead in fewer hours than that, or it could last even longer. But
if you buy a brand-name bulb that's compatible with your
projector, you should get at least 2,000 hours of viewing.
Now, how long is that in real-time?
To use myself as an example, I've had a Sony VW60 Home Theater
Projector, which has a Sony VW60 bulb, for about four years and
I watch it quite a bit. I've used my projector for more than
1,700 hours and I have not had to replace the bulb yet. (I'm
knocking on wood, as I write this, of course.) And the picture
is still outstanding.
One last tip: Most Home Theater projectors will allow you to set
them at Full Power or on Economy. If you set the projector on
Economy, the bulb will last longer, but you might not like the
picture as well. It's your call.
Also, a replacement bulb for a Home Theater projector will
likely set you back around $200-300.
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