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What Is the Projector Hotspot? 4 Ways To Fix This


If you have ever seen a bright circle of light in the middle of your projector screen, you have seen a projector hotspot.

What you might not know is that the hotspot is often a result of the way that your projector screen reflects the light from the projector.

A hotspot occurs when you can see the bulb in the projector as it reflects off the screen.

Continue reading to learn all about hotspots and how to fix them.

What Causes Projector Hotspots?

The hotspot is caused by the reflection of the light from the projector. To understand how it happens, you need to understand how the projector works.

The science behind projectors has been around for a very long time; in fact, Plato made references to shadows of puppets on the wall of the cave in ancient times. The basis of projection is taking a source of light and placing an image in front of it to project it onto a surface.

Each projector has a light source inside, and the light goes through a lens to project an image. The image appears on the screen with the available light source.

A hotspot is a circle on the screen that comes from the reflection of this light from the lens of the projector. If the projector is close to the screen, the hotspot can be brighter and more obvious.

In addition, it can be caused by high gain screens. The best way to understand this is by understanding how a projector screen works.

A projector screen takes the image from the projector and reflects it back to your eyes. Your screen’s reflective capability is measured in Gain, and when your screen has higher gain, you will have a brighter image on the screen.

Having higher gain isn’t always the answer because higher gain screens can have problems with hotspotting, where the center can appear brighter than the outside edges.

Most projectors have recommendations for the ideal gain measurement, so be sure to check when you buy your projector and your screen.

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How to Fix Projector Hotspots?

If you find that you have a projector hotspot, you will want to take steps to fix it right away. Fortunately, there are several different things that you can try.

Most of the techniques involve tips to reduce the brightness of the image that your projector reflects on the screen.

First, you can try to reduce the brightness output on your projector. Your projector might have different settings for this, including cinema, movie, video, and more.

You might also have settings for your bulb brightness, and you can try setting it at a lower brightness. This will reduce the hotspot.

Another option is to move your projector further away from your projector screen. The closer your projector is, the brighter the light is that it throws onto the screen.

When you move your projector further away from the screen, you will increase its throw distance. This will cause the brightness of the screen to be lower.

adjust projector location

Another tip is to change the position of the projector. You can adjust it so that you change the height or the place you have it relative to your audience. This won’t eliminate the hotspot, but it can move it so that it isn’t noticeable to your audience.

Finally, make sure that your projector screen doesn’t have a gain that is too high. If you have a reflective screen with a 2.5 gain, you might find that it is going to have a hotspot.

If you are using a screen that is not fixed in place, try shifting the position to reduce the visibility of the hotspot to the audience.

How to Prevent Projector Hotspots?

When you set up your home theater, you need to make sure that your projector’s throw ratio and the gain of the screen are compatible. The best way to prevent hotspots is to make sure that you buy equipment that is designed to work together.

If you buy a projector screen with a gain that is 1.0 or lower, you will be able to avoid hotspots. Make sure to pay attention to this measurement when you buy your projector screen.

Another way to prevent hotspots is to increase the throw distance of your projector. You can move your projector further away from the screen, which will reduce the brightness of the light it projects.

It is important to remember that you will prevent hotspotting most easily by choosing the right projector screen.

How to Choose Your Projector Screen to Avoid Hotspotting?

choose a screen with a gain that is recommended to go with your projector
Choose a screen with a gain that is recommended to go with your projector

Many people think that buying a great projector will give you the viewing experience you desire, but they often forget that the screen is equally important. In fact, the screen plays a role in whether or not you have a hotspot on your screen.

Your projector manual should tell you the ideal projector screen gain to choose. High gain screens are designed to project a brighter image, but this comes at a price.

The added brightness can create hotspots that interfere with your pleasure while viewing movies or anything else on the screen. You should choose a screen with a gain that is recommended to go with your projector, and you can choose screens that have neutrally-applied screen coating and no gain boost.

Once you choose a screen that will work well with your model of projector, you should make sure that it is the right size for your room. You want to be able to place the projector further away to reduce hotspotting.

Choosing a screen that has a gain that goes with your projector will help you to reduce hotspotting.

Final Words

Hotspotting can get in the way of your ability to enjoy your movies. When you see a bright spot in the middle of your screen, it can harm your ability to watch the movie.

There are several ways that you can fix hotspotting. You can adjust the brightness setting on your projector to get rid of the hotspot.

You can also adjust the position of your projector or move it further away from the screen. You need to reduce the brightness so that the hotspot will disappear and you can enjoy watching your movie.


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