It wasn’t long ago that I declared laser projectors the future of entertainment watching. Ditch your television!, I argued. To be clear, I’m not here to contradict myself; I still very much believe that. But since then, so many people have gone out of their way to ask me this same question: Should I really get a projector or just buy the Samsung Frame TV?

It’s an interesting question because these are two completely different products being compared to one another. Yet, it makes total sense to me. The reality is that a flat-screen 4K TV just isn’t that exciting anymore. There’s a lot more to think about now. Decor and futuristic looks play a new important role, and more than ever, people are ready to commit to something different. For most, that next step is the Frame TV (which we’ve written about at length and fully endorsed here). But for those willing to be more risky and enter my corner, projectors are a cooler way to go.

This question haunted me, and I just couldn’t let it go, so I did what any good product tester does: I got the Samsung Frame TV.

Shop the Frame Shop the Projector

Why the Frame?

I’ll give it to Samsung; they were really at the forefront here. The Frame was first introduced in 2017, way ahead of its time. Seven years later, this product still has a lot of fucking hype behind it. I don’t need to explain the tech of this TV to you; if you’ve made it this far, you get the gist—it looks better than a normal TV and displays art when you want it to.

So why does everyone still love it? While the TV may have been released years ago, people are just starting invest in these in a big way, and competitor brands haven’t been quick to compete (that will soon change). The Frame feels exciting to consumers who haven’t bought anything new in awhile. Plus, more than ever, we care about aesthetics, and that big black screen hanging from your wall just simply isn’t chic. However, turning that big screen into the Mona Lisa is.

Beyond the art.

Once you get past what this thing stands for (looking cool), at the end of the day, it’s just a TV. You turn it on and sign into all 100 of your streaming services with its smart hub. From a user interface standpoint, the Home Page on The Frame isn’t the best one I’ve used. There are a handful of things you can do on this TV, like browse art, play games, and explore the Internet. Sometimes, when I’m just looking for Netflix, I can get lost in it all.

I like that the screen has brightness and display settings, which you can customize. This way, your art can be displayed at a low setting, and you can watch an action movie in full brightness and full visibility at mid-day. Groundbreaking technology? Not really, but it’s solid and reliable. For me, the viewing tech doesn’t win on originality, but does it need to? It’s all about the looks.

Samsung QLED 4K The Frame

QLED 4K The Frame

Is a projector worth it?

The Frame TV is great for what is, but what’s still cooler to me is my laser projector. Again, I’ve written about them a number of times if you want more information on how projectors work. I fully endorse the short-throw laser models that sit right in front of your wall. The display is incredible, and I love not having a screen (art or not) hanging on my wall.

That brings me to the biggest problem: a white wall. If you don’t have a white wall, you have to purchase a screen for your projector, and that can be annoying to use regularly or in the daytime for lighting reasons. Luckily, I have the right home setup that is perfect for a projector, but if you don’t, it’s a logistical nightmare. That can be a major deal breaker.

Why do I love my projector so much? It’s better than a movie theater. My current one, the Hisense PL1, projects a 120-inch clear, crisp, and colorful image on my wall. I can’t tell you how many times a week I’m watching something and am in awe of how amazing the quality is. Lasers really do wonders. Plus, I’m laying in my bed, eating my own food, and in my pajamas. You can’t sell me on a movie ticket anymore.

Hisense PL1 Ultra Short Smart Projector

PL1 Ultra Short Smart Projector

The Final Verdict.

I have to responsibly admit that unless you’re willing to completely change your viewing experience (or have that big white wall), go for the Frame TV. Something that fits your space is easy, and you just can’t beat pressing the “on” button.

By no means will I be getting rid of my beloved projector anytime soon, but I’ll say it: After not owning a TV for several years, being normal again and having one is really nice. I find myself finally catching up on old series I’ve missed, simply because using the Frame TV is easy and comfortable. Plus, from a buyer’s standpoint, I can’t ignore how much cheaper it is.

I now see why the Frame is still selling out every year, seven years after its release. It will improve your viewing experience and spruce up your decor. I still believe that projector watching is the future of TV, but that means there’s time for this technology to advance, get even better, and hopefully get cheaper over the years. For now, The Frame is a winning (and comfortable) purchase if you’re not ready to ditch TVs altogether. But a short-throw projector is how we’ll all be watching at home in the future, I really believe that. Regardless, I’m looking forward to seeing how both of these spaces continue to evolve.

Shop the Frame Shop the Projector

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