Getting a bright projector makes more sense if you’re buying it for presentation purpose than home theater purpose. For the former, you especially need sufficient light output to counter the ambient lighting, so that the screen doesn't get all washed out. For the latter, there's always this implicit assumption that you're able to control the room lighting. That said, brightness is an essential spec to pay attention to when buying a 3D projector. Since each eye only picks up half the light from the screen, the projector's brightness is effectively halved in 3D mode.
Another spec to look out for is contrast ratio - this basically means the number of levels between the blackest black and the whitest white a projector can achieve. But no matter how high your projector’s contrast ratio is, it’d be wasted if you can’t control the room lighting. The quickest and easiest way to improve contrast even if you’ve a beamer with a low contrast ratio is to turn down the lights, though many a time this isn’t possible. Also, avoid projecting on a wall or a blackboard; use a projection screen instead.
The DLP-based MP525P has a brightness rating of 2,500 lumens, an XGA (1024 x 768) resolution, and a 3,000:1 contrast ratio. It's easy to maintain too, thanks to a filter-free design. A low-cost projector, it comes with VGA, S-Video and composite video inputs.
The SP840 has a contrast ratio of 3,000:1 and a high brightness rating of 4,000 lumens. Equipped with a 1.2 optical zoom lens, this full HD 1080p projector has two HDMI inputs. It also supports Crestron RoomView for a simplified, facility-wide central access and control over a single or a group of projectors.
Looking for an affordable business projector and doesn't need a widescreen aspect ratio? The LV-7295 may just be it. Sporting a native XGA (1024 x 768) resolution, this 3LCD-based, 2,600-lumen projector boosts a 1.2x optical zoom lens, 2,000:1 contrast ratio and a long 6,000-hour lamp life.
The LV-8320 is a compact projector with a native WXGA (1280 x 800) resolution, 2,000:1 contrast ratio, and 3,000 lumens brightness - making it suitable for both business and education use. It has a 1.6x manual optical zoom lens, is fitted with a 10W speaker, and comes with an RJ-45 port for network connectivity. It's also equipped with an HDMI input.
The DLP-based XJ-A140 uses a laser and LED hybrid light source (no mercury lamp) to achieve a high brightness of 2,500 ANSI lumens. It lasts pretty long too - about 20,000 hours. This XGA (1024 x 768) projector has a 2x manual optical zoom lens, and sports an HDMI port. A wireless version is also available for pre-order at $1,899.