With the sun shining and summer around the corner, Property and Facility Managers at universities and schools are gearing up for their busy annual maintenance period. Part of this involves installing new classroom equipment.
Increasing pressure on budgets makes it more important than ever to take all factors into consideration when replacing existing projectors or installing new projectors.
Our blog looks at the key things to consider when choosing a new projector for schools:
Cost: Schools and other education venues are often under pressure to choose the cheapest equipment but this is not necessarily the best deal. Property Managers need to look at the overall cost of ownership which includes the projector, ongoing maintenance, energy saving features and lamp life. It is a false economy to choose a cheap projector that needs regular costly lamps and maintenance.
Maintenance: What maintenance will be needed? Does the projector have filters that need regular cleaning? DLP® (Digital Light Processing) based projectors have a dust-sealed, filter-free design that prevents dust and dirt from affecting the system. This means the projectors need no maintenance as there are no filters to remove and clean.
Replacing projectors: If you need to use existing fittings, check the new projector’s throw ratio. A projector's throw ratio is defined as the distance that a projector is placed from the screen divided by the width of the image it will project. For existing fittings, you just need to check the throw ratio of the new projector enables you to install this at the right distance and screen size. A zoom increases the flexibility in installation. Optoma offers a wide choice of projectors that will fit into your existing fittings.
The room: When choosing a new projector you’ll need to consider the room size and ambient light levels. Optoma has a handy guide on its website to help schools identify the brightness they would need for a small or large classroom, lecture theatre or auditorium.
Warranty and support: What is the warranty on the projector and lamp? If the projector goes wrong – what support will the supplier give to schools? Check if the warranty is ‘return to base’ or ‘DE-RE’. Optoma offers a DE-RE warranty on many of its education projectors. The DE-RE warranty means the projector will be replaced and re-installed in the unlikely event it is found to be faulty, giving real peace of mind to schools that they will not be without their vital equipment. In addition, Optoma’s dedicated UK-based helpline will provide customer support to answer questions and queries on projectors.
Performance: Will the image quality be consistent? DLP® technology uses millions of mirrors which produce higher quality images and does not suffer colour degradation over time, as sometimes experienced in other projector technologies. Optoma is so confident that the image colour quality of its projectors will remain as good as the day you bought it, that it offers a five year guarantee.
Other features: Check which additional features you need. Many projectors can be managed and monitored remotely through network control. This will alert you when lamps need to be changed and automatically powers down projectors at the end of each day to save energy and lamp life.
Do you need interactive capabilities in your projector which enable students to participate and learn together by making any projection surface an interactive one. Consider whether you would like built-in speakers, 3D or wireless capabilities, which allow teachers to present wirelessly from a PC or mobile device.
Security: What anti-theft features does the projector have? Optoma projectors have a Kensington Lock Port that enables schools to attach a lock for added security. Some projectors can also be password protected for added security.
Optoma manufactures projectors with a wide range of resolutions, brightness and throw ratio including standard throw, short throw and ultra short throw and some with a interactivity features. Short throw and ultra short throw projectors can project a 100” image from as little as 0.4 metres from the screen. This is ideal for small rooms where there are space constraints or classrooms /training venues where the presenter is at the front and wants to avoid creating shadows.
It offers a complete solution to its projectors with wall mounts and a full range of accessories. Its Visualisers enable teaching staff and students to share work with the whole class. The microscope adaptors allow tiny objects to be seen by the whole audience. It is also possible to capture and save images from what the Visualiser captures either as photographs or as a video.
Find out more on Optoma’s full education range.