If you’ve already got a projector, you’ll know how amazing they can be for watching movies. With an image that can fill a whole wall, the viewing experience becomes really immersive.

DVDs and Blu-rays look great, but what about regular TV? There are some shows which would look amazing on the large screen - Planet Earth, for example. We’re not so sure about others; a seven-foot wide version of the news may not be ideal, unless you really like Huw Edwards.

It’s certainly possible for many modern projectors to play TV signals, and HD models can take advantage of the extra definition to make the image even sharper. There are a few things to bear in mind, so we’ll help you see the big picture.

The Knowhow

  • Check the inputs on your projector
  • Make sure your cable/satellite/Freeview box outputs will work with the projector
  • Use an HDMI cable, if possible, for the best possible image
  • You may be able to watch TV with your projector via your Blu-ray/DVD player or games console. Recent models provide built-in wifi to provide a connection to your home network and the internet, letting you access to view TV on demand services such as BBC iPlayer
  • You may need to purchase quite a long cable depending on the distance between the projector and source
  • Unless your projector has  built-in speakers you will need to be connect it to a sound system in order for you to hear the TV audio
  • Adjust the projector’s input mode to detect the TV signal
  • You can use your cable/satellite/Freeview remote control to change channels


  • The increased use of the projector to watch TV will reduce the lifespan of the bulb
  • Current models are not able to display 3D TV properly
  • The increased size of the display will magnify any faults in the image
  • This will be particularly noticeable with standard definition channels
  • Projectors work best in dark environments; the picture may appear faint during daylight or when the lights are on

Now you can watch everything from Spooks to Downton Abbey on the biggest screen possible. While using a projector may not be the ideal way to view TV on an everyday basis, it’s certainly worth it for those special programmes.

Updated On:

Aug 15, 2012

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