Most people talk about projectors in a home theater context. While this is one common use for them, it’s not the only place they can be used. Projectors are a great tool for classrooms, business presentations, and displaying digital signs. For these applications, the best home theater projector isn’t always going to be the right choice.
The Optoma ZW400 is designed with this use in mind. It’s low-maintenance, easy to use, and has a powerful, bright lamp ideal for lights-on use. What’s more, it’s affordably priced in the under-$1,000 price range. (>>> Check current price on Amazon)
Wondering if this is the right projector for your needs? Read through this Optoma ZW400 review to learn about its features and performance so you can answer that question for yourself.
Optoma ZW400 Review of Specifications:
|Brightness (Lumens)||4,000 ANSI|
|Throw Distance||2.1' - 26.5'|
|Input lag||No data|
|Screen size||19.7" - 315.5"|
|Speakers||10.0 Watts Mono|
Set-up and Installation
The extensive connectivity of the Optoma ZW400 gives it a lot of versatility for different set-ups. This includes 2 HDMI ports and a VGA input for visual input, as well as audio hook-ups and connections for advanced network control. That allows it to accommodate the wide array of content sources you may need for business and education use.
Aligning and adjusting the image is easy on the Optoma ZW400, as well. Its manual 1.3x zoom and vertical keystone correction let you fine tune the image to match your screen, and allow it to be used in both table top and ceiling-mounted set-ups. One unique feature of the ZW400 is that it doesn’t need to be flat to work. You can point it straight up, straight down, or angled any way in between. It also includes a Portrait Mode that rotates the image 90°, a helpful feature for use with signs and displays.
The throw distance on the Optoma ZW400 is on the long side. You’ll need between 10 and 14 feet for a 120” image, depending on how you set the zoom. This tends to be less of an issue in classrooms and conference rooms than it is for home use, but is something to keep in mind if your space is fairly small.
- High contrast and color accuracy with HDR10 and HLG support
- Bright lamp won’t wash out from ambient light
- Supports network control through LAN and RS-232
- Full HD 3D support
- Portrait mode and 360° installation expand set-up options
- Low maintenance thanks to dust resistance
- Long lamp lifespan
- Low native resolution
- Long throw distance (needs a lot of space for a big screen)
You’ll get a good color accuracy and high on-screen contrast with the Optoma ZW400. It supports HDR10, giving it a dynamic contrast ratio on part with professional-level home theater projectors. Along with that, it uses a 4-segment color wheel with 10-bit color processing and HLG technology. This results in a wide color gamut for accurate, true to life color. The bright, 4,000 lumen lamp keeps those colors vibrant no matter the light level in the room.
Our only issue with the Optoma ZW400 from a picture quality perspective is its resolution. The native WXGA resolution means fewer on-screen pixels than Full HD (1080p) projectors. Because of that, it’s not as sharp or crisp as what you’ll get from most home theater projectors. While on-screen text is still legible, you’ll particularly notice the lower definition and detail if you’re watching videos and movies.
Durability and Long-Term Performance
Rather than a lamp, the Optoma ZW400 uses a DuraCore laser light source. It can last an impressive 30,000 hours in Eco Mode. Even in higher performance modes you’ll get around 20,000 hours of use out of it. That’s high enough most won’t need to replace the light source for the entire usable life of the projector.
We also appreciate the low-maintenance design of the ZW400. It has an IPX6 dust resistance rating. This spares you the need to clean the vents, and is especially helpful for projectors permanently installed in hard-to-reach areas of classrooms or offices.
We also appreciate that the Optoma ZW400 supports modern content formats. You can still play 4K content through the projector, though it will only play at the supported WXGA resolution. Still, this prevents the projector from becoming outdated and makes it a smart long-term investment.
The Verdict: Optoma ZW400 Review
For presentations and other classroom and office uses, the Optoma ZW400 checks all the boxes. It’s compact enough to carry with you while still being low-maintenance enough for permanent installations. Along with that, it’s easy to set up and use, with the flexibility to function beautifully in a variety of applications. (>>> Check current price on Bhphotovideo)
While home theater users may find the low resolution of the Optoma ZW400 to be a problem, its color and contrast are still high, and it does support 3D content. It may not be perfect for everyone, but it’s certainly worth considering if you need a versatile projector at a great price.