Shoebox Size Projector?

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Been reading, searching, etc etc- many posts are old and what used to work, isn't that great anymore.

I am looking to make a few fairly small video projectors for some Halloween effects. I need some small LCDs, maybe 2 - 4" or so. I don't want to do a whole slide projector casing, as that is just too big and bulky for this setup. It must be compact. Viewing size is probably, oh, anywhere from 1' square to 5' or so (if that big, I might just build some larger ones later for the bigger effects).

Can someone direct me to a good LCD screen hack, with video/sound inputs as well as which lenses to use? All the projectors I have seen are BEASTS! I would like one about the size of a shoebox, if possible...

Thanks for all the help...

BTW- I DID post this in the LCD forum, but it seems to have hardly any activity over there, and I'm in a time crunch to get this thing done...
problem is the controller

It is easy to find small LCDs, (ie., but the cost of the controller will kill you!

I would recommend you try a PSone game console. They have 5" LCDs, and you can drive them with composite video from a VCR or computer. Look for threads about PSone-based projectors on this forum.

Given that, I think you could make a small box if you used a 100 to 250 Watt wide pin capsule halogen bulb (Home Depot), a parabolic reflector as wide as the LCD, and a CRT projection lens (also as wide as the LCD. That combo should be pretty small because the lens goes right up against the LCD, and no fresnels means no focussing distance between lamp and LCD. You could probably run it for a couple of minutes with a low duty cycle, without any cooling or IR filtering at all. If you want to leave it on for a while, then you could add a 120 VAC fan (Radio Shack) and a piece of IR filter glass (

If you succeed in making one, post some pics!
Thank you very much for all this info! I'll do some more searching in the forums on these items, and probably give it a whack. Anyone else out there successfully build a small projector box? Remember- I don't need a large image size for this one- so small is the key. I can build larger ones for large images later...
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