Tom Bert, senior member of the product management team in Barco’s Entertainment division is responsible for the digital cinema servers and projectors, and as such, is just the man to go to for all-things projectors.

In this advice piece, he answers the frequently asked question: ‘How do I get the laser projector into my booth?’

Since their introduction in the 2014-2015 timeframe, laser projectors have created a lot of visibility for themselves in the cinema market. Exhibitors look at RGB laser projectors to serve larger screens, brighter 3D and/or a more premium experience.

Laser phosphor projectors are the product of choice when reduced TCO, higher operational efficiency and hassle-free operations are important.

“The industry is clearly choosing laser and it is clear why they select laser,” says Tom.

As a manufacturer of laser-illuminated cinema projectors, Barco designs its products in line with the market expectations and requirements.

What does it take to integrate the laser projector and what will the impact be on my operations?

“Given the importance of cooling and the impact it has on brightness and lifetime of laser light sources, the projectors have a relatively large(r) cooling component,” Tom advises.

“For Barco’s RGB laser projectors these are called ‘chillers’: a closed circuit of cooling liquid below ambient, much like a refrigerator. The cooling unit of our laser phosphor units is comparable to a car radiator. In any case, it’s this carefully designed cooling that allows us to reach performance metrics like 30,000 hours lifetime to 80% light level. Of course, the cooling adds to the total volume. Barco’s 60,000-lumen RGB laser projector measures 74 x 144 x 29cm; and has two chillers of 70 x 70 x 80cm each. The projector weighs 235 kg.

“This means that your checklist for the physical installation should include things like: ‘Are my doors wide enough? Is my lifting equipment strong enough? Do I have to climb stairs? Is my pedestal strong enough?’

“These aren’t rocket science, but they’re things that need to be checked in advance. The cooling units of Barco’s projectors (both the chiller of the RGB projector as the radiator for laser phosphor) can be put remotely. This can help you in optimising your booth layout.”


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