For indoor and backyard theaters alike, this refurbished Optoma offers bright, razor-sharp images on the cheap. The only downside is the short warranty.
I love projectors. Nothing beats wall-size movies, TV shows, Xbox games, photo slideshows, and so on. I've also been known to haul a projector outside for a little backyard theater action.
These days, a 1080p model is all but essential. Alas, most of them sell for $1,000 or more--sometimes way more. But today only, and while supplies last, Woot Sellout has the refurbished Optoma HD20 and HD180 projectors for $649.99 (plus $5 for shipping).
The two models are virtually identical, though the HD20 has a slightly higher contrast ratio: 4,000:1 to the HD180's 3,500:1. Both offer 1,700 ANSI lumens of brightness, and both can project on screens as large as 300 inches (that's 25 feet to you and me).
With two available HDMI inputs, you can connect, say, your cable box and your Blu-ray player. If you need additional inputs, you can always toss in an inexpensive HDMI switch.
I haven't found many reviews of the HD180, but over at Amazon, more than 100 buyers rated the HD20 four or five stars. Given its higher contrast ratio, I'd definitely choose that one if it's still available--but there's definitely nothing wrong with the HD180.
Both models are refurbished, meaning you get a 90-day warranty on the projector and just 30 days on the bulb. Cause for concern? Perhaps. Replacing the latter can be expensive, as with any projector; this outfit sells HD20 bulbs for $139, the best price I've found anywhere. That said, you should be able to get a couple years from the supplied bulb, if my projector experience is any indication.
Although $650 is a pretty hefty chunk of change, I think these projectors are a steal at this price. If you've never experienced the joy that is wall-size HD, here's your chance.
Bonus deal: Need a Blu-ray player to pair with the projector. SonyStyle has the refurbished Sony BDP-S270 Blu-ray player for $59.99, plus sales tax in some states and $6.50 for shipping. That's after applying coupon code OUTLETBDPS59 at checkout. The player can stream Netflix, Pandora, and a bunch of other services. I bought one of these myself not long ago, and it's been working nicely.