Projectors in 2024: the year's biggest launches so far and what's coming next

Three projectors sitting on tables
(Image credit: LG / XGIMI / Samsung)

It's been a huge year for projectors so far – with high-quality beamers arriving from the likes of LG, Samsung, BenQ, and more. But as we hit the halfway point of 2024, it's time to assess the changes we've seen in the projector market, as well as any rumors and announcements for the second half of the year.

Projectors are changing; whereas they were once a niche TV alternative, they're now a serious replacement for a TV setup, whether you're a committed cinephile with a dedicated home cinema room and projection screen, or a camper who's looking for an easy way to watch movies.

And the slate of 2024 models is showing that the traditional benefits of most projectors (flexibility, scalability, portability) are improving while the common downsides (low brightness, limited blacks) are farther away than ever. 

Here's a quick overview of the excellent projectors we've seen launch in 2024 so far, and a glimpse of what might be coming next.

Projectors in 2024: what have been the biggest launches so far this year?

Samsung The Freestyle 2nd Gen inputs section

The Samsung The Freestyle 2nd Gen – side-panel connections include one HDMI with eARC and a USB-C port for power (Image credit: Future)

Our guide to the best portable projectors has been given a serious shakeup in 2024. This year has seen a flood of excellent 4K projectors with a portable mindset – ensuring that shoppers don't need to choose between flexibility and picture quality – to the extent that in January we wrote that it could be "the end of home theater as we know it".

We've seen a second-gen Samsung Freestyle, an $800 / £650 follow-up to the 2022 original that was already one of our favorite portable projectors. It brought improved support for Xbox and Nvidia cloud-based gaming services, as well as the option to install it in a ceiling light socket. 

Our Samsung The Freestyle 2nd Gen review noted that its brightness (230 lumens) and HD resolution leave a little to be desired, but it's still a fantastic option for those after a smart projector with a great interface, 30-100 inch projection and the ability to easily move images around.

LG Cinebeam Q projector on table

The LG Cinebeam Q mashes up CineBeam picture excellence with portable projection. (Image credit: Future)

But LG is the major player that's brought its exceptional CineBeam range to the portable market with the stylish CineBeam Q (above), which achieves 4K resolution and 500 lumens brightness as well as the excellent webOS streaming platform from high-end LG TVs. At $1,299 / £1,299 / AU$2,499, it prices out the more budget Samsung Freestyle, but with a 4.5/5 rating in our LG CineBeam Q review, it's well worth the upgrade. 

And for those after a truly bright experience, the JMGO N1S Ultra 4K is another new portable projector with Ultra HD resolution and up to 3000 ANSI lumens, alongside a brilliantly compact design and sturdy gimbal for tilting and rotating the projection with pinpoint accuracy.

a white square projector with a remote control resting on it

(Image credit: Future)

There are plenty of new advancements for fixed-position projectors, too. The XGIMI Horizon Ultra (above) is the first long-throw projector that supports Dolby Vision, the dynamic HDR format that tweaks color, contrast and bright highlights on the fly for a more vivid, true-to-life viewing experience – and one that counters the assumption that projectors are condemned to produce dim images and struggle with dark scenes. 

In our XGIMI Horizon Ultra review we praised the 2,300 lumens output and wrote that "the blacks are deep and HDR performance brilliant, with great brightness even in well-lit conditions." 

At $1,699 / £1,749 / AU$3,499, the XGIMI Horizon Ultra is still far cheaper than many of the premium projectors we review, and it's proof that, in 2024, even mid-range options are managing to be competitive on lots of the most important metrics.

Projectors in 2024: what launches are we expecting during the rest of the year?

Samsung The Premiere 8K projecting a football match, with its wireless connection box on a separate unit

Samsung The Premiere 8K is yet to get a firm release date, but could well launch before 2024 is out. (Image credit: Future)

The main absence from 2024's projector lineup so far is Samsung's The Premiere 8K, which was shown off at CES 2024 (and CES 2023 before that), but has yet to officially the market, with no firm release date in sight.

This is the first ever wireless 8K projector, for incredible 8K resolution images, 4000 lumens, and up to 150-inch projection with a wire-free beamer and ultra short-throw technology. 

You will need Samsung's One Connect Box to wirelessly transmit 8K video to the projector, but it does mean you can keep the additional hardware and cables out of view on a cozy movie night. A built-in 8.2.2 channel Dolby Atmos sound system doesn't hurt, either, and marks a notable upgrade over the high-end Samsung Premiere LSP9T, which is currently the best 4K projector we'd recommend for sound quality.

As an alternative for the best 8K TVs, the incoming Premiere 8K is an interesting proposition. While the present for projectors seems to be in bringing high-end specs to portable models, the future seems to be (somewhat similarly) in bringing wireless tech to the high end – and the winners are most certainly us.

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Henry St Leger

Henry is a freelance technology journalist, and former News & Features Editor for TechRadar, where he specialized in home entertainment gadgets such as TVs, projectors, soundbars, and smart speakers. Other bylines include Edge, T3, iMore, GamesRadar, NBC News, Healthline, and The Times.