Projectors have been around for a long time; the first projector was invented in 1895 by Woodville Latham and his sons, Otway and Gray. Throughout the ages, projectors have developed, and they’re still widely used to this day.
Projectors are used in universities, schools, gaming, and recently, home theatres. So if you’re debating purchasing a projector of your own, you need to know the difference between the two most popular resolutions; 720p and 1080p.
If you’re building a home theatre or you’re going to purchase a projector for gaming purposes, the 1080p is what you should go for.
On the other hand, if you’re on a budget and you want a projector that’ll get the job done and still not sacrificing that much quality, 720p is your answer.
720p vs 1080p Projectors: Full Comparison
What Is The ’P’?
The main difference is in numbers. Before we got into that, we have to know what ‘p’ means, and no, it doesn’t stand for “pixels”.
Most of us grew with Cathode Ray Tubes Televisions. CRT works by emitting electrons are the screen; when electrons hit the screen, they produce light, and together they form the image. The electrons hit the screen from top to bottom, by the time the bottom half of the screen starts showing, the top half is already fading.
In order to avoid that, manufacturers came up with a new technique of display; only half the lines of electrons are refreshed every cycle. That is called “interlacing.” However, that resulted in image distortion.
Later, ‘progressive” scanning came up, which is what the ‘p’ stands for. In progressive scanning, the lines are shown on the screen in a sequential order, which provides a more detailed image.
What Do The Numbers Mean?
The numbers stand for the number of horizontal pixels. That means that a 720p has 720 horizontal lines of pixels and 1,280 vertical lines pixels, which sum up to a total of 921,600 pixels on the screen while the 1080p has 1,080 horizontal and 1,920 vertical lines which sum up to 2,073,600 pixels on the screen.
Comparing these two numbers together, you will find that 1080p projectors have 2.25 times the number of pixels of a 720p projector.
What Even Are Pixels?
Atoms are the smallest particle of an element that can exist. Pixels are the smallest building units of a display device. An image consists of many pixels, and together they form an image.
Like atoms, you can’t hold an atom in your bare hand, nor can you see one. However, when atoms combine, they form an element that you can see and touch, like a particle of sand, for example.
Increasing the number of pixels provides a higher-quality and a clearer image. So, the more, the better.
You may have seen pixels before if you had looked close enough. They are little rectangles, each one has its own color, and if you look from far enough, you see the whole image.
Can You Spot The Difference?
That depends on multiple factors, and the most important one is how close are you to the screen. The fewer pixels there are means that the image’s clarity decreases. So, yes, if you are close enough, or if you’re displaying on a bigger screen, you can easily spot the difference.
For example, watching a video on your phone in 720p and 1080p, you may not see much difference. Try watching the same video on a large TV screen; you may see a difference, again, that depends on how close you are to the screen.
So, when purchasing a projector, that number matters—especially when using that projector for displaying a large image, like a home theatre.
Overall Findings Of 720p vs 1080p Resolution
720p projectors don’t provide the same full HD experience that 1080p projectors do, however, the full HD experience cannot even be spotted in smaller screens. So, if you’re not displaying on larger areas or you’re not too close to the screen, the 1080p projectors aren’t needed in that case.
Keep in mind the price difference. The 1080p projectors are more expensive than 720p projectors are, which makes sense to pay more to get higher quality.
1080p projectors are the most popular display resolution for gaming. When it comes to gaming, you cannot afford a drop in quality; you need to be able to see smaller objects well, that’s why 1080p projectors are recommended when it comes to gaming.
In addition to gaming, 1080p are more prevalent when building a home theatre. If you’re willing to build a home theatre, you’d need to spend a lot of money when it comes to decor, seatings, and any extras like bean bags or a popcorn machine. In that case, it only makes sense to get a high-quality 1080p projector, especially if you’re displaying on a large area.
On the other hand, 1080p projectors are pricey. If you don’t have that much money to spend and you’re willing to sacrifice the 1080p quality (keep in mind that 720p is still considered a high quality), then 720p projectors are for you. You get a decent quality, and not spending too much money.
The video below offers a summary of the differences between 1080p and 720p in terms of picture quality.