I know what I want for Christmas. (Actually Chanukah, but you get my meaning.) It's this Vava 4K HDR projector, which blasts a beautiful, mammoth image on the wall and solves a number of challenges normally associated with projector setups. It normally sells for $2,800, but now there's a discount: The Vava 4K Projector UHD Ultra-Short-Throw Laser is on sale for $2,650 at b8ta.com with code CNET150. While that's barely more than half of the 10% ($280) discount that we saw back in August, it's $150 off its usual price of $2,800, and $100 below the Amazon price of $2,750. That's for the white/grey model; if you'd prefer it in black, head to Vava's site or Amazon, but be prepared to pay full price. (Note that CNET and B3ta have partnered for in-store and online events.)
What's an ultra-short-throw projector? One you can park right below your screen or wall. That the hassles of a traditional ceiling mount, which are considerable. Plus, the Vava features a built-in Harman Kardon soundbar, one with both Dolby and DTS audio support. That means you can dispense with additional audio gear (and the remote and cabling that goes with it).
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The projector runs a specialized version of Android, but it's clunky and limited. Trust me when I say you'll want to plug in your preferred Fire TV or Roku streamer. There are three HDMI inputs, so you'll also have room for your game console and another device. (One of them is HDMI ARC in case you want to expand beyond the built-in sound system.)
I had about a day to test-drive the Vava earlier this summer. Here's what I learned:
- It's a breeze to set up and operate, proof-positive to me that UST projectors are the wave of the future. One box, one wall, done.
- It produces a bright, sharp picture — one you can see easily even in a well-lit room.
- The built-in speakers sound superb, though the projector itself produces a constant low-level fan noise that can be a bit distracting during quiet scenes. That's really my only ding on the product.
- UST projectors are less forgiving on uneven walls than traditional projectors. For the best overall experience, you'll probably want to invest in a proper screen. (You could also build your own on the cheap.)
- I want one.
To put this in some perspective, you could buy something like the 75-inch TCL 8 Series TV for $2,200 (though the 2019 model was recently on sale for as "low" as $1,500). You can even get into an 85-inch TV for below $2,000.
With this projector, though, you're limited only by the amount of wall space you have: It can project an image as large as 150 inches. (And, at minimum, 80 inches.) That's some serious home theater right there.
Indeed, if you're thinking movie theaters aren't coming back anytime soon and you want to recreate the big-screen experience as best you can, this is a great way to go about it. Excuse me while I bust open the piggy bank to see if I can swing this somehow.
Read more: The best home-theater projector for 2020
Note: A version of this deal was originally posted August 5, when a 10% discount was available with a code through Amazon. We've also removed the Kim Carrey Percussion Massage Gun deal originally listed here because it has also expired.
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