Projectors are a great way to set up a personal movie theater in your home and enjoy all the excitement of the big screen. However, one question that many people face after purchasing a projector is how to get sound from the projector to their external speakers? Most projectors come with very poor quality speakers built-in, if they come with speakers at all.
The answers to this question will depend on the make and model of your projector and speakers. We have put together this handy guide to troubleshooting the sound of your home theater system, with sections that should cover all the most popular equipment types.
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Different Types of Projector Audio Connections
Before we discuss how to connect different types of audio systems to your projector, we will look at the different connection types you may be using.
This way, you can use this section as a glossary when reading about how to get sound from your particular projector set up in the sections below.
Connecting a Projector to Stereo Speakers
Connecting your projector to stereo speakers should be a straightforward process.
Most projectors manufactured recently will simply require a TOSLINK, composite/component audio, or 3.5mm cable to be connected into the audio-out port on the projector and into the audio-in port on the speakers themselves.
The only complication you are likely to encounter is that while some stereo speakers consist of multiple units linked together, others have their audio connectors split into individual left and right ports. For these later speakers, you will need to split your chosen coaxial cable or audio jack between the two ports.
Connecting a Projector to Wireless Bluetooth Speakers
When it comes to wireless speakers, there is nothing more convenient and readily available than Bluetooth speakers. The market is full of amazing models that connect to whatever device you desire, including smart projectors. They come in a range of sizes, shapes, and capacities for both volume and overall sound quality; there are even some brands that allow you to link up multiple wireless Bluetooth speakers to create your very own surround sound system on the fly.
Of course, you will only be able to utilize wireless Bluetooth speakers if you have selected a smart projector unit with the capacity for Bluetooth connectivity. So if a wireless connection is important to you, make sure you do the appropriate research on the specs of your projector beforehand. Many newer models of projector offer this, but if you are using an older model of projector, you will most likely lack this feature.
Connecting a smart projector to wireless Bluetooth speakers is an easy process that works similarly to establishing any other Bluetooth connection. Before you get started, it may help to have all other Bluetooth devices that are not in use switched off to avoid confusing the process.
First, enable Bluetooth mode on both your projector and the wireless speakers. Sometimes you may have to make the wireless speakers discoverable by holding down a certain button (usually one with the Bluetooth symbol on it) until it makes a sound or a light begins to flash.
If your wireless speakers and projector do not automatically sync, use the settings on your projector to confirm the speaker you want to connect to.
If you are having problems getting the two to connect, it often helps to switch both devices off and back on again. Bluetooth devices can sometimes be a bit fiddly in their initial setup stages, and it is not uncommon for it to take a couple of attempts to become connected properly.
Connecting a Projector to Your Home Theater Sound System
Unlike simply connecting left and right stereo speakers to your projector, correctly setting up a home theater sound system for optimum audio quality can be a little more complicated.
You will need to use additional equipment to reroute the audio and video signals to their proper channels if you are running a home theater sound system with multiple pieces of hardware.
One option is using an AVR (audio/video receiver) to split the signals. This component will send the video signal to the correct display devices (in this case, your projector) and the sound signals to whatever parts your personal sound system is comprised of.
Another option is utilizing a splitter switch or matrix switch.
A splitter will allow you to split one media source's connection between two different display devices or only one display device and an audio device if it is utilizing an HDMI connection. A switch will allow you to increase the number of total source devices you can connect.
A matrix switch combines these two devices for maximum customization for your more complex home theater sound system needs.
Connecting a Projector to an Audio Video Receiver (AVR)
We mentioned connecting your projector to your home theater sound system using an AVR above, but we thought we would go into a little more detail here as it can be a slightly tricky process.
Your AVR will be able to receive audio and video signals from multiple different sources. It will process and amplify the sounds and direct them to your speaker system while it routes the video signals to your projector.
To connect an AVR, turn off all of your devices first. You then need to plug your audio cables into the audio out port on your projector. After this, connect the other end to the aux-in port, which is usually located on the back of your AVR. At this point, you can turn all of your devices back on.
All that remains to do is to press the source button on your AVR until you see the word aux on the AVR's control panel. If you have done everything correctly, you should be able to hear the sound through your system while the visuals are projected through your projector.
Connecting a Projector to a Soundbar Amplifier
Soundbar amplifiers are incredibly popular at the moment, especially for creating a simple home theater sound system set up that doesn't compromise on immersive sound quality.
The main difference between regular external speakers and a Soundbar amplifier is that a Soundbar doesn't entirely replace the sound coming from its audio source. Instead, it amplifies and enhances the sound but leaves the original sound source playing as usual alongside it.
It should be simple to connect your Soundbar to your projector. Simply use the available audio-in ports like you would with external speakers. Soundbars commonly utilize all of the cable types covered above in relation to stereo speakers, with the addition of HDMI cables.
People Also Ask (FAQs)
In this section, we will address some of the most frequently asked questions about the process of getting sound from projector systems to various sound systems.
Do all projectors need speakers?
The short answer to this question is no. Not all projectors will require external speakers or hi-fi systems. In fact, most modern projectors will be fitted with their own speakers - and some of them are actually very good quality. Of course, it is hard to beat the sound quality from a well-calibrated home sound system. Furthermore, with older models of projectors, most will require an external source of sound.
Can you put speakers behind a projector screen?
It makes sense that many people want to position their speakers behind the screen their projector will be projecting the image onto. After all, this will mean that the sound is coming from where the action is, and you will have the most immersive and convincing home cinema experience possible.
The good news is that, yes, you can place speakers behind a projector screen. However, you will need to ensure that the material your projector screen is constructed from is acoustically transparent. This simply means that it is designed for sound to pass through it. Examples of commonly used acoustically transparent materials include spandex and milliskin products.
How do I get sound from my Epson projector to my speakers?
Many people ask specifically about Epson projectors - and we can see why! Epson is the world's leading projector manufacturer, and they have a huge range of projectors to suit whatever your needs may be.
Epson's projectors are modern and streamlined for easy home theater use. This means their products are smart and compatible with wireless Bluetooth speakers. They are also able to be connected by cables using the methods listed above!
We hope this guide to the possible projector to sound system setups has been helpful, and now you can stop reading and enjoy the fruits of your labors with your brand-new home theater rig.
When you see how easy it can be to recreate that big-screen feeling with flawless audio, you'll wonder why you ever spent so much money going to the movie theater - and why you put up with the limitations of a simple television screen for so long!