Outdoor TV Vs Outdoor projector

Are you planning to install your entertainment system outdoors?  Then you must be confused as to which is better: an outdoor TV or a projector. Both have their own pros and cons, and which one to choose will depend entirely on your requirements.

It depends on your personal preference whether to use a projector or a TV, although price, brightness, electricity consumption, durability and many other factors also play a significant role.

An outside TV would be a better choice if you are looking for a permanent setup. However, if you don’t need anything permanent and plan only to entertain a large group of people once in a while, a projector would be the best option.

Additionally, the screen of a projector can be expanded much more than that of a TV, which makes it suitable for larger crowds.

It is not possible to separate which is better since each has its merits and shortcomings. The purpose of this article is to provide a comparison between the outdoor TV and outdoor projector. After reading this article you will be able to figure out which one suits you and your area.

What to consider before buying an outdoor tv or projector?

  • Environment:
    You must firstly consider where you are planning to set up your equipment. You must know if that area is affected by extreme weather or not. Another thing to consider is contestability options in that area.
  • Light:
    Another thing you must consider is that if the place is well lit or there is not much lighting there.
  • Permanent or not:
    You must consider if this is going to be a permanent setup or it’s just for the time being.
  • Price:
    Another very important factor is how much you are willing to pay.
  • Extra Devices:
    This means that you can buy extra devices with the setup or not or you want everything in just one device.
    These are some of the factors that influence your choice between an outdoor projector and an outdoor TV. You should be clear about all of these factors before moving forward.

Comparing Outdoor Projector and TV:

This article compares the features of outdoor projectors and outdoor televisions. Both of them will be compared on certain characteristics such as screen size, lightning, weatherproofing, and so on. Let’s begin:

1. Screen size:

If you are planning to buy an outdoor television or a projector, the first thing you need to consider is the screen size. Undoubtedly the screen size of the TVs have grown considerably over time. But if you want a giant screen, only a projector can do it.

Therefore when it comes to the screen size a projector is much better as it has the ability to project giant size images. Although you may not want such a big size screen then a TV will be the best option for you.

Obviously, setting up a projector is not without problems, but we will discuss them in more detail in the following sections. Nevertheless, for high quality movie nights in your backyard without needing a permanent setup, none is better than an Outdoor projector.

2. Lighting:

A problem that you face outside is ambient lighting, which is out of your control. Therefore, if you consider the lighting, a projector might not be as bright as a TV. Although there are projectors that work well in ambient lighting as well.

As we previously discussed in one of our earlier articles, there are several best outdoor projectors on the market. However, even compared to a TV, the brightness of a projector may not be as good.

3. Weatherproofing:

The weather is another factor that you cannot control. Rain poses the greatest problem out of all weather conditions. The combination of water and electronics does not really work. When buying any electronic outdoors, you should take this into consideration.

There are many outdoor TVs that are weatherproof because they are made specially for outdoor use. The instruments come in a protective case to keep them safe from severe weather conditions. Nevertheless, you will have to spend a great deal of money on this technology.

In contrast, a projector is a temporary setup, so you can bring it inside whenever you like. As a result, it can be easily protected from rain and other extreme weather conditions.

4. Pricing:

Budget is one of the most important factors that determine your preferences. However, it is possible to find an outdoor TV as well as an outdoor projector within your budget. Even if you do not want to spend a lot of money on an outdoor TV, you can buy any regular TV with a case that will protect it from extreme weather conditions.

A normal TV will also get the job done, but there will be a compromise in some features that an outdoor TV has.

In terms of projectors, you can find one in every price range. As a projector can be kept indoors and is portable, you can get it at a lower cost than an outdoor TV.

Nevertheless, you don’t want to choose an extremely cheap model and should consider a projector with a high brightness. A minimum brightness of 2500 lumens is recommended due to the ambient light outside.

In addition, you should do your research and read in-depth reviews before buying any device. An honest review of the range of projectors was provided in our previous article. To help you out in buying the right projector screen, we have also reviewed 10 of the best outdoor projector screens in our related article.

Advantages of an Outdoor TV:

  • Lighting:
    A TV provides better brightness in ambient lighting than a projector.
  • Weatherproof:
    there are outdoor TVs available that are weatherproof.
  • Easy setup:
    TVs come with hassle free setup and there is no need to attach multiple other devices with it unlike a projector.
  • Easier viewing:
    TVs have better viewing angles than a projector.

Disadvantages of an Outdoor TV:

  • Small screen:
    The screen size of a TV is much smaller than a projector.
  • Not good for a large crowd:
    A TV is not suitable for a larger crowd and a projector suits this need better.
  • Price:
    Outdoor projectors are quite expensive when compared to projector.

Advantages of an outdoor projector:

  • Big screen: A projector has a giant screen projection and hence produces a very big screen.
  • Great for a big crowd:
    Many people can clearly see a movie on a projector.
  • Price:
    Outdoor projectors are much more budget friendly than an outdoor TV.
  • Best for temporary setup:
    if you need a device for occasional use then nothing is better than a projector as it can be set up and removed as per your need. Hence it also occupies less space.

Disadvantages of an outdoor projector:

  • Lighting:
    not all projectors work well in ambient lighting and the ones that do are also not as good as a TV.
  • Weatherproofing:
    a projector is not weatherproof and extreme weather can destroy it.
  • Need extra devices:
    with an outdoor projector you will also need a screen as well as a speaker and many other things for setup such as a mount. Hence a projector is a little chaotic while setting up.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can a projector work in ambient lighting?

Yes there are projectors available in the market that are made specially for outdoors and can work well even in ambient lighting.

 Do I need to attach external speakers with my outdoor projector?

Most certainly yes you would need to attach external speakers with your outdoor projector. The sound of the projector is not that loud and hence external speakers are needed.

 How can I protect my TV from rain?

There are certain waterproof TVs available in the market. If your TV is not waterproof then you can buy a waterproof case for it and it gets the work done.


An outdoor projector and an outdoor TV serve different purposes, so deciding which is better is difficult. If you want a relatively permanent setup, a TV is the best option. Projectors are the best option for occasional movie watching.
Furthermore, a projector is a better option if you have a larger audience. There is no clear choice between the two, but now you know the advantages and disadvantages of each. Therefore, you can choose the one that is most suitable for you.

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