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All the time and money you put into your home theater setup can be completely undone by the one purchase you probably spent the least amount of time and money on – your projector mount.
It may sound like a minor detail, but choose the wrong projector mount and you could end up with a shaky picture, an overheated projector, or worst of all, an expensive projector lying on the floor in pieces because the mount you cheaped out on fell apart.
It’s not such a minor detail after all, and you want your setup to be perfect. A little research now could save you all sorts of trouble down the road. Here are some of the things to look for when choosing your projector mount:
Do you want a specific mount for your projector? You can get a dedicated mount for many projectors, and it’s the best way to ensure the fit will be perfect and the screw holes will all line up perfectly. So, not a bad idea, and your best bet is to buy directly from the manufacturer or as a package deal where you bought the projector. Universal mounts have the advantage of surviving the day when your projector invariably becomes obsolete and needs to be replaced, or the day when you just decide to splurge on a new one. The downside is they are harder to set up, and you do run the risk of an imperfect fit.
Weight capacity You absolutely need to find out how much your projector weighs. If you’ve tossed the manual with the specs, check the manufacturer’s website. And then double and triple check the weight capacity of the mount you’re looking for.
Some like it hot – but your projector definitely doesn’t. Nothing kills a projector faster than overheating, and they generate a ton of heat. How does your mount come into play? Ones with less surface area are less likely to cover the projector’s ventilation fans. (A dedicated mount will be designed to avoid those.) And while you may be tempted to go for the heavier steel mount thinking it’s stronger, those can easily become hot boxes, while aluminum ones will allow more heat to escape.
Will your screen move? Static screen means fixed mount, but if your setup is in a room where daylight forces you to project onto a different wall, you’ll want a mount that allows you to point the projector in different directions.
More to think about than you assumed, right? We’ve got your back. Check out these great choices while you’re shopping for the best universal projector mount.
Best Budget Universal Mount
Vivo Universal Adjustable Ceiling Projector Mount
Not many truly quality projector mounts live in the under-$20 price range, but the Vivo Universal Adjustable Ceiling Projector Mount is definitely one of them. Nearly 8,000 Amazon reviewers agree, and give it an average 4.5-star rating. The Vivo has extending bracket arms to fit virtually any projector, and has a low 6-inch drop from the ceiling to accommodate lower ceilings. The design of the Vivo ensures that no vent fans are obstructed, letting your projector breathe while being securely fastened to the ceiling.
Best Rotating Mount
Vogel’s Projector Ceiling Mount
Range of motion can make or break your projector setup. If you’re not in a basement, you likely have sunlight to contend with, and a static projector mount may also prevent you from rearranging the room. Vogel’s Projector Ceiling Mount gives you total freedom of movement – 360 degrees around, and 20 degrees of tilt in case you need to move your screen, all while providing a safe and secure mount. Word to the wise: The Vogel’s has a max weight capacity of 22 pounds, so definitely not for large projectors.
Peerless-AV PRG-UNV: Precision Gear Projector Mount
There are a ton of small, light projectors on the market, but many of the better ones – especially ones for large rooms – are still hefty, and you don’t want to trust one of those with just any projector mount. The Peerless-AV PRG-UNV has a whopping 50-pound capacity, and yet still allows for precision adjustments for perfect projector alignment. The universal spider adapter lets you give your heavy projector a snug and secure fit.
Best Choices for Different Reasons
QualGear Pro-AV Projector Mount Kit
Not all movie rooms are alike. Do you want to set up in a room with a suspended or drop ceiling? Truss ceiling? Vaulted or cathedral ceiling? They’re all very different mounts, and QualGear has them all covered, including a mount specifically for truss beams. They all come with a 1.5-inch threaded pipe system for hiding wires, with lengths varying from 3 inches to 3 feet. It’s just about impossible to have a ceiling which can’t accommodate a QualGear kit.
Best for Drop Ceilings
Amer AMRDCP100KIT Universal Adjustable 2 x 2 feet Drop Ceiling Projector Mount
Drop ceilings are probably the trickiest mounting job of them all. Not only can it be a pain to do, it’s virtually impossible to do it and have the mount blend in seamlessly with the rest of the ceiling. (No, put down that box cutter, it’s going to look janky.) The Amer Universal Adjustable 2 x 2 feet Drop Ceiling Projector Mount is the same size as most drop-ceiling tiles, and it’s white so it blends in. It can also rotate 360 degrees and tilt 180 degrees, and best of all it’s easy to install, with no tile-cutting necessary.
Best Ceiling or Wall Mount
Duronic Projector Mount PB06XL
Nobody says you have to mount your projector on the ceiling – wall mounts are also a perfectly viable way to anchor your projector. A wall mount may fit your setup even better than a ceiling mount, especially if you’re installing in a room with a low ceiling. The Duronic Projector Mount gives you the freedom to utilize your wall space, or if you change your mind it’s also an excellent wall mount. The extendable bracket arm is strong enough to hold projectors up to 30 pounds, and the projector attachment is easily adjustable to any screw holes, and also designed to avoid covering ventilation fans.