How to make your own LED projector lamp

LED Projector Lamp

In an LED projector lamp, an LED is used instead of the filament based bulb which is used in standard digital projector lamp, also known as UHP (Ultra High Performance) lamp. The LED lamps come with a long list of merits in comparison with the UHP lamps. The most remarkable quality of an LED lamp is that it is far more durable than a UHP lamp. An LED lamp has a consistent, stable and distinguished color output throughout its lifetime. On the other hand, the color output of a UHP lamp diminishes as the time passes.

UHP lamps demand very high maintenance expenses because the bulbs which are used in them are not very durable. They are very expensive to replace. On the contrary, LED lamps does not require frequent changing of LEDs. Due to their qualities like small size and their capacity to work at a lower temperature, LED lamps can be designed to be extremely small, light in weight and above all portable. That is why these lamps are also mentioned as micro or pico projectors. However, LED lamps do not offer good brightness in comparison with UHP lamps. The lumen production in UHP lamps ranges from 2000- 5000 lumen or more. LED lamps which produce only 50- 500 lumen.

Let us see how to make your own LED projector lamp at home or in your lab.

Difficulty Level:

Moderate.

One need to perform steps like soldering and gluing. Good knowledge of circuits is also required.

Time Required:

1- 2 hours approx.

All the essential parts and components need to be kept ready at hand.

Resources Required:

1. A Project Box

2. Powerful LED

3. A Slide Projector Lens

4. A Power Supply Unit (PSU)

5. Small Fan

6. Power connector

7. Magnified/ Fresnel Lens

8. Condenser lens

9. MP4 Player with a LCD screen of at least 2 inches

10. Some cables

11. Hot Glue Gun

12. Soldering Gun

13. Some Screws

14. Heat sink

Estimated Cost:

$120 approx.

To lower the cost, certain equipment can be rented, borrowed or bought second hand.

Instructions:

1. Take the MP4 player apart and then carefully disconnect or separate the LCD from the circuit.

2. Remove the LCD and backlight from the casing.

3. Cut a piece of something rigid where the LCD is going to be.

4. Fit the LED to the heat sink. Take a drill and make two holes on the heat sink to attach the LED firmly on it with screws.

5. Wire the cables and make connections.

6. The most important and crucial step is to place the LED, the condenser lens, the Fresnel/ Magnifying lens,the LCD and the slide projector lens in a line. Make sure that the center of these objects must be in a straight line. You have to shuffle these objects many times to get the right distance and desired results.

7. Once you are done with finding proper distance between all these objects you can decide the size of box required for this purpose.

8. Now put the fans near the LED so that the heat generated can be reduced.

9. Check the projector in a dark room just like in a theater to test whether the projector is properly or not. This way, you can find out problems with its functioning, if any.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. I am not happy with the results of my LED projector. The LED which I am using generates 750 lumen. Should I go for a more powerful LED?

Ans: Yes, because the picture will become clearer and brighter with increase in the luminosity of the LED. So, if you want better results, you should go for an LED that generates more than 1000 lumen.

2. What things should I do to make the picture more clear?

Ans: Go for a more powerful LED. Secondly, the Fresnel lens, condenser lens and the slide projector lens should be of high quality. Lastly, make sure that all of them are placed in the right order and at right proper distance.

3. Where can I get the resources needed for making of an LED Projector Lamp?

Ans: You can get the LED and the box at any radio shack or electronics components store or hardware store. The rest you can order online like on eBay. You can buy new components or you can go for second hand products depending on your budget and requirements.

Quick tips:

1. If you want a good picture quality then always opt for a powerful LED, good quality of Fresnel lens, condenser lens,slide projector lens and LCD.

2. To avoid any confusion, get the material together and follow the steps one by one.

3. For better results you have to try many combinations of distances between the LED, the different lenses, the slide projector and the LCD. You can either get it right by trial and error or you may calculate the distances by drawing an optical diagram.

4. While fitting LCD make sure that the image shown is upside down so that the image projected by it will be straight.

Things to watch out for:

1. Make sure to align the centers of the LED and the lenses.

2. Pay proper attention while doing electric work like making connections of wires and placing the components in order.

4. To reduce the heat generated, use of heat sink and fans is absolutely essential.

5. Removal of LCD from its panel should be done carefully to avoid any kind of damage to it.

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