LG HU80KA Projector

Last updated date: August 15, 2019

DWYM Score
8.7

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We looked at the top 1 Home Theatre Projectors and dug through the reviews from 1 of the most popular review sites including Digital Trends and more. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Home Theatre Projector you should buy.

Overall Take

The LG HU80KA projector offers 4K Ultra High Definition video, a rarity for projectors. The clear, accurate picture provides stunning video in an easy to set up unit. In our analysis of 12 expert reviews, the LG LG HU80KA Projector placed 2nd when we looked at the top 4 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note August 15, 2019:
Checkout The Best Home Theater Projector for a detailed review of all the top home theatre projectors.

Expert Summarized Score
9.0
1 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.1
26 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Easy to set-up. Built-in smart TV functionality. Clear, beautiful 4K HDR image. Easy to transport
- Digital Trends
What experts didn't like
Laser projection means finite use time
- Digital Trends

From The Manufacturer

Experience thrilling home cinema in the vivid clarity of 4K Ultra HD (3840 x 2160) with LG’s brightest projector, the HU80KA. Move from room to room or install the projector overhead and enjoy a huge 150” image with four times the resolution of Full HD. With HDR10, the precise colors and peak brightness of high dynamic range content will look wonderfully lifelike. The HU80KA is also LG Smart TV enabled to easily stream movies and TV shows from the most popular services, plus full HDCP 2.2 compliance for hassle-free connectivity. Please check with content providers for required bandwidth to stream videos. Smart service support subject to change.

Overall Product Rankings

1. JVC DLA-X590R Projector
Overall Score: 9.5
Expert Reviews: 3
2. LG HU80KA Projector
Overall Score: 8.7
Expert Reviews: 1
3. BenQ HT2050A Projector
Overall Score: 8.5
Expert Reviews: 5
4. Epson Home Cinema 5040UB Projector
Overall Score: 8.1
Expert Reviews: 2

An Overview On Home Theatre Projectors

Home theaters and offices have long relied on projectors to provide content. For home theaters, though, projectors remain popular for their ability to provide high-quality video on oversized screens. You can access a wide range of projectors in varying prices, from high-powered units designed to be mounted, to moderately-priced units that are portable while also providing crisp images.

As you start projector shopping, you’ll probably experience some technology that’s unfamiliar, especially if you haven’t paid much attention to TV technology in recent years. The biggest thing to consider is 4K Ultra HD versus 1080P. While 1080P is high definition, it consists of only 1920 x 1080 pixels, whereas 4K Ultra HD has 3840 x 2160 pixels. The term “4K” comes from the horizontal pixels, which at 3,840 is close to 4,000.

Will you notice a difference? A 4K TV has nearly four times the pixels on a screen when compared to a 1080P TV. But projectors aren’t TVs, so when you’re talking about 4K capabilities in this arena, it’s actually a chip built into the projector. The small size of that chip in projectors makes this challenging, which is why 4K projectors are still less common than 1080P.

However, some projector manufacturers have made up for that by creating technology that can give the appearance of 4K Ultra HD. This provides a far better picture than you would have had if you went with a strictly 1080P projector. But there are more factors contributing to the picture a projector outputs than whether it’s 4K or 1080P. When looking at projectors, it’s especially important to choose one that can handle the room in which you’ve chosen to use it.

If, like many consumers, you’re buying a projector for a movie room, you’ll need one that can display dark colors expertly even with the absence of light in the room. Much harder to find, though, is a projector that handles a well-lit room well. Knowing in advance that you’re putting this demand on your projector will help you choose one that provides a beautiful picture for years to come.

DYWM Fun Fact

Although Woodville Latham and his sons, Otway and Gray, have long been credited with inventing the first projector, a German priest was actually the first to write about the topic of projecting images onto a screen. In 1646, Athanius Kircher brought the concept of the “magic lantern” to light in a publication called “Ars Magna lucis et umbrae.” This magic lantern had been used in religious practice for years, as religious practitioners learned to project images on a screen using light and mirrors. But Latham and his sons revolutionized projection in 1895, when they came up with a device to project images on a large screen.

The Home Theatre Projector Buying Guide

  • If you want the best picture, you’ll need to look for 4K Ultra HD technology. LG’s HU80KA offers 4K Ultra HD resolution that provides a crisp, vivid image. However, other projectors use technology to upscale a 1080p chip to 4K resolution. JVC’s eShift5 technology converts 1080p sources to 4K with great results.
  • Contrast ratio is also important, especially if you’ll be using it in a dark room like a home theater. The JVC’s high contrast ratio can battle many 4K projectors, with deeper blacks and more detail in darkly lit scenes.
  • Color accuracy is also important in a projector. If a scene has flesh tones that come across as yellow, it can disrupt the viewing experience. The BenQ a projector has impressive color accuracy.
  • Projectors are built to work with external components, so ports should be a big part of your decision. JVC’s projector has two full-speed HDMI 2.2-compatible inputs that can convert 1080p content to HDMI. Compare that to the other projectors, which have only one HDMI input. It’s 2.0-compatible, but it provides only 10.2 Gbps compared to JVC at 18 Gbps. Although 10.2 Gbps may suffice for now, you’ll probably begin to notice the difference in a couple of years as technology improves.
  • Once you get your projector, you’ll need to install it. Although you can pay extra for professional installation, chances are you can set them up yourself. The JVC’s built-in presets for various needs make it easy to do it yourself.
  • In some cases, you may want to mount your projector from a ceiling. If this is the case, check to make sure you’ll have the mount you need. JVC projectors need a specific type of mount, and it isn’t included with the unit. The weight of the LG makes it difficult to suspend from ceilings, while the BenQ works with universal mounts.
  • Before you buy, consider where you’ll be using the projector. If you’re dealing with a smaller space, look into the BenQ, which uses a shorter-throw lens that helps it project a larger-size image in a small room. The JVC also works better in a home theater room, as do many projectors. The BenQ, however, does work well in brighter rooms, even if there are ample windows with plenty of outside light.
  • If you’re looking for a projector you can pack up and take with you, the BenQ may be the best option. At only eight pounds, it’s easy to transport. The other projectors could be transported, as well, but the size of the JVC may make it less desirable for toting around or packing away when you’re not using it.
  • These days, apps are an important part of any video experience. The LG has exclusive Smart TV streaming, which means you can hook the projector up and access content from providers like Hulu, Netflix and Amazon Prime. With the other projectors, you’ll need a streaming stick for the same functionality.
  • Of course you’ll want to keep your budget in mind when purchasing a home theater projector. You’re sure to find one to fit your budget, no matter how big or small.