Do projectors work on textured walls

A projector and textured wall in background.

The overall idea does not look great if you want to use a textured wall for projection. Yes, you can make projectors to work on textured walls, but the image quality will become so low. In addition, the small perfections right there on a textured wall keep the image quality blur and not so crisp and cinematic.

If the wall does not look smooth, tiny shadows will certainly appear on the projected image, and the quality ultimately looks low. We have discussed more of the pros and cons below regarding whether it is a good idea to use textured walls for projection:

Do projectors work on textured walls

Projecting on textured walls is feasible, but several factors must be considered to ensure optimal image quality. Textured walls can cause defective image reflections, so smooth walls are crucial. Projecting on textured walls is fine for some individuals, while high-definition images can be achieved with special paint developed for digital projectors.

With textured surfaces, choosing high-brightness content and setting the projector’s angle and brightness can mitigate challenges. Projecting on textured walls is possible, but prioritizing a smooth surface and making appropriate adjustments can improve the viewing experience.

Is it ok to use textured walls for projection?

Remember that wall should look smooth if you are using it for projection. Though you can utilize textured walls and make them run with projectors to project images but the picture quality will become alarmingly low. The projected images look not so smooth, crisp, and cinematic and tiny shadows appear on them as well.

You can pick a white wall, but a wall fails to reflect light properly compared to a projector screen. Moreover, if it is a textured wall and the surface looks massively rough and not as smooth, the picture quality will surely appear blurred.

Why is it generally not recommended to use a textured wall for projection?

It is generally not recommended to use textured walls for projection. Below you can check out why it is not a good idea to use walls as a display:

Tiny shadows appear on the projected image

If using a textured wall for projection, tiny shadows will come on the images, and the quality will become low, blurred, and not up to the mark. You might have noticed that such walls have lots of imperfections on them. They do not look smooth and this makes the images less bright.

The wall does not reflect light properly

The idea does not look appropriate when it comes to using textured walls for projection. A wall does not properly and accurately reflect light as a projector screen. The picture quality becomes less bright too. Projector screens are accompanied by a special coating, making them exclusively reflective. You can also paint the wall with such a coating and make it reflective.

The image becomes less bright

The crevices and bumps on a textured wall make the projection less bright. It is due to the uneven surface of a wall that the projected image fails to show maximum brightness. No wonder it is only by using a good quality projector screen that the image quality can become ultra-smooth. The screen’s highly reflective surface keeps the image brighter than a typical textured wall for projection.

How to make the best use of a textured wall for projection?

As we have already discussed above, textured walls used for projection deliver poor image quality. But you can sort out this problem by following the below-mentioned solutions:

Solution 1: Smoothen the textured wall 

It would be best if you smoothen out the textured wall as much as possible. Even if you spot a little texture, imperfection, or a small bump or crevice on the wall, smoothen it out. You must always remember that small bumps on the wall cause tiny shadows on the projected image.

When inspecting the wall, it is recommended to turn off the lights and use a good-quality flashlight. This hack will quickly help you identify where the problem areas are! Mark those areas with a pencil and use sandpaper to smoothen the wall. You can also use a power sander.

Solution 2: Paint the textured wall after removing the imperfections

Once you have removed the imperfections from the wall, now you can paint it. It is suggested to use projector screen paint and not any other paint. Such paint allows the wall to reflect light with utmost accuracy and precision. Furthermore, it is better to paint the wall with white paint. White remains more reflective as compared to other color options.

Add a primer first on the wall, and then do the paint. Two coats are enough, and let it dry for a few hours. If you are using a projector with a very high lumen count, around about 3,500, then it is recommended to paint the wall with gray paint. Note that if you project 3500 lumens on a white wall, a slightly blinding experience will be displayed.

Solution 3: Create a frame around the textured wall

After removing imperfections and painting the textured wall, you must create a frame around the wall. It is assumed that creating a distinguishable border helps the audience to focus only on the high-quality image.

What you can do is make a black outline around the wall, which you have smoothened out and painted. The viewer will know exactly where the projected image has begun and ended. In addition, the frame helps the eye to naturally maintain focus. It lets you concentrate on the super minor details which are being projected on the wall, and the viewing experience becomes distracting-free. Use keystone adjustment to aim for a rectangular projection on a surface or screen.


Now, it is your turn to make us know whether it is a good idea to use a textured wall for projection. If it is an emergency, you can use a textured wall to project the image but the picture quality will deteriorate. Textured walls are surrounded by massive imperfections, bumps, and crevices, which impact the image quality and no longer look smooth, crisp, and digital.

You can repair the textured wall by smoothening out its imperfections using sandpaper. After that, prime and paint the wall and create a border/frame around it to enhance focus and eliminate further distraction. Please let us know your stories and experiences if you have ever used textured walls for projection.

Hi there! My name is Haris Rehman, and I review projectors for homes, movies, and offices. My passion for all things audiovisual has led me to test and review a broad range of projectors for consumers to help them make informed purchasing decisions. The reviews I provide are honest and unbiased based on my understanding of what makes a quality projector. Check out my blog for the latest reviews and insights.

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