What Are the Best Projectors for the Uneekor Golf Simulator System?

  • BenQ
  • 2021-06-08

How to pick the perfect projector for your QED or EYEXO simulation camera

Uneekor makes two of the most popular golf simulator launch monitors that use a combination of marked golf balls and club stickers to generate an amazing amount of data on each swing.   With the right projector – you can turn that data into an ultra-realistic virtual golf experience to play any course at any time from the comfort of your home but feel like you’re really there.

 

Because both models are mounted above the playing area, it is easy to set up a ceiling-mounted short-throw projector outside the hitting area to instantly enable you to visualize the ball flight of each shot.  Here are some guidelines based on the type of impact screen and playing area you want in your home or business:

  • Basic setup with square impact screens 10 feet wide or less
  • Midrange setup with 12-foot widescreen impact screen
  • Ceiling mounted setup with an impact screen 12 foot wide or larger
  • Dual-purpose home theater and golf simulation setup

Basic setup with 10 foot wide or less square impact screen

A smaller square impact screen is both affordable – and doesn’t take up too much space in your room.  This is a popular choice for many entry-level simulators, and with the right projector, you can mount the unit on the floor – or above the playing area on the ceiling. 

What resolution should I get?

For a square impact screen – the XGA resolution is one of the most efficient and affordable projectors for this setup.  Why?  Because the resolution matches the aspect ratio of your impact screen, you get a brighter image compared to a widescreen projector.   For example, the BenQ MX825STH model is small enough to fit into popular floor enclosures and with all 3500 lumens shining on the screen – makes for a great entry-level setup.   

You can also use a higher resolution model such as the TH671ST which has 1080p resolution or the new TK700i projector if you want to use it in both 4:3 and widescreen modes.    Many golfers like the fact that these models also use advanced DLP technology that doesn’t turn yellow over time and doesn’t need filters.  

Midrange setup with 12-foot wide impact screens

As your impact screen gets wider, you will need a brighter projector to ensure your picture doesn’t get washed out, as well as higher resolution to deliver a realistic look and feel of the hole.  For example, a 5000-lumen laser projector will enable you to have a bright enough screen without having to worry about the lighting of your playing area.  The best models also feature a WUXGA DLP chip with over 2.3 million pixels and specified color accuracy of 92% of REC 709 or higher.  The combination of laser technology and DLP enables you to see the details of the ocean on the 14th hole at Moon Bay C.C. as well the dramatic slopes surrounding the fairway on Two Rivers #5 for the ultimate in a realistic Uneekor simulator.   

Depending on how you set up your projector, there are two nice placement options for your playing area.  If you want to use an AV cart to set up the projector to the side of the playing area, the BenQ LU930 is an ideal projector with the right throw ratio to be set up safely beside the playing area – and with enough lens shift and correction controls to enable you to adjust the image to fill your screen.  This projector can also be ceiling mounted in many cases – but if don’t have a very high ceiling, you may want to check out the next section.

Ceiling mounted setup with an impact screen 12 foot wide or larger

For a ceiling-mounted projector, the new BenQ LU935 is getting excellent reviews from golf simulation installers around the world.   This projector features a short-throw lens to safely mount your projector away from the playing area without the player casting a shadow – while delivering an amazingly accurate picture.  You can check out the “golf” mode on the projector where it enables you to see even more details in the grass and water spaces in your Refine or Succeed software.

If you are a DIY type, you will also appreciate the large number of installation aids to enable you to get your projector looking perfect on the screen – even if you mounted it off-center.   This projector has lens shift, keystone correction, corner fit, and even digital shrink technology to fine-tune nearly any placement location into a perfectly calibrated simulator screen.

Dual Purpose Golf Simulation and Home Theater

One of the best things about a Uneekor golf simulator is that you can design your playing area to also be used as a home theater.  Because the camera mounts on the ceiling, it stays out of sight – enabling you to create sitting areas and incorporate surround sound speakers around and behind the impact screen.   

Today virtually every television and Blu-Ray movie use 4K UHD resolution, and you can now find a high brighteness 4K UHD short throw projector for your setup that now costs less than the Uneekor QED launch monitor.  The BenQ LK953ST is one of the only golf simulator projectors that can render every one of the 8.3 million pixels from your simulator on your impact screen – showing every detail on your golf course, as well as the Masters 4K broadcast, Netflix movies in 4K, as well as native 4K games. Even cooler – this projector uses the same Oscar award-winning technology used in nearly every 4K commercial cinema today – turning your giant impact screen into an memorable family entertainment area.

What are the other advantages of laser projectors for golf sims?

For larger impact screens, you can see that the best projectors for Uneekor use laser technology instead of lamps.   While they are initially more expensive to purchase, there are three key differences between a traditional lamp and a cutting-edge laser projector for you to consider with your setup.

#1 Instant On / Off

Let’s start with the basics.  Turning the projector on.  One of the biggest advantages of a laser projector is that it turns on instantly – just like your TV.  Traditional lamps require a warm-up period and the more powerful the lamp, the longer it takes.   Laser projectors enable you to just drop in and hit a quick bucket of balls.  Laser projectors also don’t need extended cool-down time to cool the lamp, so there is less risk of overheating if the power goes out when you are using the projector.

#2 They stay brighter longer

In 2020, over 75% of high brightness projector buyers choose a laser over a lamp.  Why? They stay brighter longer. A 5000-lumen lamp that is rated for 3000 hours of life starts losing brightness in the first few hundred hours - and will only be displaying 2500 lumen when it is replaced.   By contrast – a laser projector with a 20,000-hour life will look much brighter than a lamp projector after the same 3000 hours. 

#3 Replacement lamp Costs

The cost of replacement lamps – and the hassle of installing them – is getting are more expensive.  High brightness projector lamps don’t last as long as lower brightness models – and substituting a generic lamp to save money can ruin your projector.   For example – one popular golf simulation 5000-lumen projector model has a replacement lamp cost of $350 plus installation - which can add up to over $2000 over the life of the projector –about four rounds of golf at TPC Pinehurst.   

Also – the latest laser projectors from BenQ eliminate the hassle of filter cleaning that is required on most other projectors.   This eliminates the risk of your projector shutting down due to a dirty filter in the middle of a game of Wolf.

What projector is right for your Uneekor simulator setup?

Depending on the size and shape of your playing area and impact screen, here are several good lamp and laser projector models at a variety of price points and mounting positions that will help you get the most out of your QED or EYE XO launch monitors. 

 

BenQ MX825STH

BenQ
TH671ST

BenQ
LU930

BenQ
LU935ST

BenQ
 LK953ST

 

Mounting Location

BenQ MX825STH

Floor Enclosure / Ceiling

BenQ
TH671ST

Floor Enclosure / Ceiling

BenQ
LU930

Ceiling / Cart

BenQ
LU935ST

Ceiling

Short Throw

BenQ
 LK953ST

Ceiling

Short Throw

 

Brightness

BenQ MX825STH

3500 lumens

BenQ
TH671ST

3000 lumens

BenQ
LU930

5000 Lumen

BenQ
LU935ST

5500 Lumen

BenQ
 LK953ST

5000 Lumen

 

Aspect Ratio

BenQ MX825STH

4:3 (square)

BenQ
TH671ST

16:9 (wide)

BenQ
LU930

16:10 (wide)

BenQ
LU935ST

16:10 (wide)

BenQ
 LK953ST

16:9 (wide)

 

Resolution

BenQ MX825STH

XGA

BenQ
TH671ST

1080p

BenQ
LU930

WUXGA

BenQ
LU935ST

WUXGA

BenQ
 LK953ST

4K UHD

 

# of Pixels

BenQ MX825STH

768K

BenQ
TH671ST

2.1 Million

BenQ
LU930

2.4 Million

BenQ
LU935ST

2.4 Million

BenQ
 LK953ST

8.3 Million

 

Lamp Type

BenQ MX825STH

Lamp

BenQ
TH671ST

Lamp

BenQ
LU930

Laser

BenQ
LU935ST

Laser

BenQ
 LK953ST

Laser

 

Lamp Life (Full Brightness)

BenQ MX825STH

6000 hours

BenQ
TH671ST

6000 hours

BenQ
LU930

20,000 hours

BenQ
LU935ST

20,000 hours

BenQ
 LK953ST

20,000 hours

 

Est. Street Price

BenQ MX825STH

$700

BenQ
TH671ST

$749

BenQ
LU930

$2399

BenQ
LU935ST

$3999

BenQ
 LK953ST

$5499

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