Small-scale projectors are becoming more popular each year. They can easily turn any blank wall into a home theater and can be the anchor of a thrilling movie night with friends and family.
To throw a successful movie night, you’ll need Bluetooth speakers to project sound; however, this can be difficult, depending on whether your projector has Bluetooth access or not.
To connect your wireless speakers to a projector, you will need Bluetooth capability. The easiest way would be to use a projector with built-in Bluetooth accessibility. If this isn’t an option, you need to connect your speakers to the streaming device or invest in a Bluetooth adaptor or audio cable.
Read my article- Wireless Home Theater Systems: An Honest Review
Though the steps might seem intricate if followed carefully, connecting your wireless Bluetooth speakers to a projector can be simple and quick. Read on for the how-to guide on connecting Bluetooth speakers to a projector.
Determine if Your Projector Is Equipped With Bluetooth Capability
The first and most important step in the process of connecting your Bluetooth speakers to your projector is to determine whether or not your projector is equipped with Bluetooth capability. If you’ve bought your projector in the past few years, it’s likely that it already has Bluetooth access.
How to Check for Bluetooth Tech
Whether or not your projector is Bluetooth-friendly can be determined easily. Most Bluetooth devices have the small Bluetooth symbol, which is a mashup of the H and B runes from the Viking Futhark, representing the initials of Viking king Harald Bluetooth.
Sometimes you have to hunt for the Bluetooth symbol on your projector. Generally, it will be indicated on the manufacturer’s webpage, the Amazon page, or the instruction pamphlet if the projector is Bluetooth-capable.
For example, the Amazon page for this ARTlii Mini Projector (Amazon) clearly states that the product is Bluetooth-capable. The Bluetooth specs are a huge selling point, especially for people who want to stream videos and movies straight from their phones, so you’re not likely to miss the Bluetooth features.
If You Have Bluetooth Tech
If your projector is Bluetooth-capable, then the problem of connectivity is easily solvable. Though they can sometimes be tricky to finagle, most Bluetooth-capable systems are easy to connect to a speaker.
The process is very similar to other Bluetooth processes that you might be familiar with, like connecting your phone to the Bluetooth in your car.
To connect your Bluetooth-capable projector to a Bluetooth-capable speaker, you need to determine how the projector accesses Bluetooth settings.
Many projectors will have a button for Bluetooth that pops up with connectivity options to help it pair to other devices. The Bluetooth options will most likely appear on the screen once you’ve established power to the device.
Another way to connect your Bluetooth speaker to your Bluetooth-capable projector is to use an app. The Nebula Mars II portable projector and the rest of the devices in the Nebula family can be connected to the Nebula brand app, which helps you control the projector from the convenience of your couch or lawn chair.
Once you’ve determined the mode of connectivity access that’s unique to your model of Bluetooth-accessible projector, click on the setting for pairing, making sure that your speaker is also on its pairing setting.
Pairing can sometimes be difficult, so be patient. It often takes a few moments to kick in.
Once you find the speaker as an option on the pairing list for your projector, select it. Once they’ve paired, you can get on with watching your movie or show in peace.
If You Do Not Have Bluetooth Tech
If you have a Bluetooth speaker that you want to connect your projector to, but your projector is not equipped for Bluetooth connectivity, then connecting the two becomes harder.
It will take some tinkering and careful product selection. However, if you have the right tools, it’s just a matter of either working around the projector or finding an adaptor to modernize your projector.
The problem with trying to connect your wireless Bluetooth speaker to a non-Bluetooth compatible projector is that the projector simply isn’t equipped for wireless connection.
It’s easy to connect your phone or your laptop to a speaker because almost all cell phones and laptops are engineered to be able to use Bluetooth. At the same time, many projectors just don’t have the right receptors to connect wirelessly.
Choose What Devices You’re Streaming From
Before you determine what tools you need to connect your Bluetooth speaker to your non-Bluetooth projector, it’s important to determine what you’ll be using the projector for. The difficulty of this task will vary depending on whether or not you’ll be projecting from a device that’s Bluetooth capable.
If You Will Be Connecting It to a Bluetooth Capable Device
If you are trying to connect your Bluetooth speaker to a projector that’s not equipped for Bluetooth connection, but the device you’re streaming from IS Bluetooth-friendly, you can bypass the entire project of turning your projector into one that’s Bluetooth-capable.
To connect your Bluetooth speaker to a non-Bluetooth projector through a Bluetooth-friendly laptop or TV, you need to connect it with the laptop or television. This is the easiest solution for people trying to get their devices to sync up.
This process will be easier to perform than the original connection of the speaker to the projector. All you need to do to connect your laptop or TV with your speaker is to find the Bluetooth settings on your device and turn on Bluetooth capability.
From here, you’ll need to turn the speaker on and engage the pairing function. This will send out a signal from the speaker to your device to connect the two.
The name of your speaker, usually the brand and model, will pop up on your device in the available devices category of your Bluetooth settings. Select the pair option next to your speaker’s name, and the devices will link.
If You Will Be Connecting It to a Non-Bluetooth Capable Device
Connecting your Bluetooth speaker to a non-Bluetooth capable device becomes much harder because the Bluetooth capability is what allows a wireless connection. When you can’t connect wirelessly from one device to another, you have to add a piece of equipment to serve as a middleman.
Devices that don’t have Bluetooth access are usually older models of desktop computers, DVD players, and laptops. Though it may seem impossible to connect to your speakers, it’s rather easy since most older models have jacks for headphones, which makes wiring a connection simple.
Connect Device to Speakers With Cable Manually
The first way that you can connect your non-Bluetooth device to a non-Bluetooth projector is by using a male-to-male 3.5mm audio cable.
A 3.5 mm male-to-male audio cable, in layman’s terms, is a cable with two ends that look like the plugs you put in your headphone jack. A cable like this one is helpful because it allows you to make a wired connection between two devices.
Because it may not be possible to connect your Bluetooth directly to the projector, it may be a better option to try and connect the Bluetooth speaker with the device you’re trying to stream a movie from.
If your laptop or TV doesn’t have Bluetooth capability, but you still want to get the movie to play on the speakers, then use the audio cable to connect the two.
Out of the middleman options for bridging the gap between your speakers and your projector, getting an audio cable is the easiest and cheapest option. Many Bluetooth speakers, like the OontZ Angle 3 (Amazon) have a built-in AUX input, the process of connecting your non-Bluetooth device to the speaker can be a breeze.
If you have any sort of electronic devices like headphones, computers, or TVs around your home, it’s likely that you already have a 3.5mm audio cable in your junk drawer or hidden away in a closet. They’re inexpensive and come in handy when you least expect it.
If you don’t have a 3.5mm audio cable, it will be easy to find one at your local tech supply shop or big box store. Amazon Basics sells its 2-foot 3.5mm Male to Male Stereo Audio Cable for less than $6. Since this is a multi-use cable, you’ll likely need it for something else, like replacing broken headphones.
If you need one that’s longer, you can purchase a longer one like this 30ft Audio Cable (Amazon) from OUK-BT. This long cable would be great for keeping your laptop out of the way while setting up a movie on your projector outside.
Invest in a Bluetooth Adaptor
If you’d like to invest in an option that’s a bit more high-tech and want the opportunity to get better audio quality out of your Bluetooth speaker, you should invest in a Bluetooth adaptor.
A Bluetooth adaptor is a device that plugs directly into the audio jack on your projector and creates a tiny Bluetooth hotspot. By connecting this adaptor, you’re essentially giving your projector it’s Bluetooth setting.
This option is extremely helpful if you’re looking for a way to connect your Bluetooth speaker to a non-Bluetooth projector in a way that doesn’t need a wire. A wireless connection like the one created by a Bluetooth adaptor is helpful because it means you won’t have wires to trip over, and there is potential for greater audio quality.
There are several Bluetooth adaptors on the market right now that can connect your projectors to your Bluetooth speakers.
One of the most popular Bluetooth adaptors on Amazon right now is the Elegiant 2-In-1 Bluetooth Adaptor. This adaptor is unique because of its portable shape and size and isn’t a blocky, cumbersome piece of equipment like other Bluetooth adaptors.
The Elegiant 2-In-1 is also a great option because it holds 10 hours of battery life. Keep this in mind for your next movie marathon.
Along with the ultra-long battery life, this Elegiant model also boasts the ability to hook up to two different speakers. This means that you can imitate a surround-sound feel in your living room with just a few Bluetooth speakers, turning your house into a movie theater on a budget.
Another bestseller on Amazon for Bluetooth adaptors is the Friencity Bluetooth 5.0 Transmitter. This tiny adaptor is the shape of a little circle with just one button on the top, making this piece of equipment immensely easy to use. It boasts an even longer battery life than the Elegiant at 14 hours.
The Amazon specs also indicate that this device can be used while charging, making your life easier when the device is on low battery, and you want to finish your flick.
Whether you choose the Elegiant model or the Friencity, picking a Bluetooth adaptor is a great option for someone looking for a more tech-savvy solution to the gap between your speaker and your projector.
Install Your Cable or Adaptor
Installing a 3.5mm Audio Cable
Though it involves a bit of shopping around, once you’ve gotten your hands on your speaker-to-projector connector, either the audio cable or the Bluetooth adaptor, it’s easy to set yourself for a night to TV on the big screen.
To install an audio cable, you need to make sure that your speaker and your device are close enough to be hooked up with the cable. This is where buying a long cable comes in handy, especially if you don’t want your computer right in the way of the speaker.
You should also make sure that your cable is long enough to rest easily on the floor or another piece of furniture. Plenty of people have made the mistake of using a tight, short cable to wire their hardware together, only to have someone trip over the cord, damaging both the person and the hardware.
If you’re wiring two pieces of equipment together for the long-term, you will want to consider taping or safely stapling the cord between them to the baseboard of your room or even along the wall.
All you’ll need to do to get the cable hooked up is plug one end into the headphone jack of your streaming device, which is often demarcated by a small headphones symbol, and plug the other end into the audio jack of your Bluetooth speaker. This will make a wired connection between the two.
Make sure to buy a male-to-male audio cable. There are hundreds of different varieties of cables on the market. Be sure to buy one that is a) long enough for your needs, and b) is a male to male variety. This will ensure that your cable fits into both the streaming device as well as the speaker.
Installing a Bluetooth Adaptor
Installing a Bluetooth adaptor is a bit tricky compared to an audio cable, but is still a process that can be completed within minutes. Just like your audio cable, the Bluetooth adaptor fits into an audio/headphone jack. However, with the Bluetooth adaptor, you’ll install it in the projector, not the speaker or the streaming device.
First, ensure that your Bluetooth adaptor is fully charged. This will ensure that the adaptor doesn’t die when you’re trying to watch your movie. Every Bluetooth adaptor has a different charge time and life, so it’s important to ensure that it won’t die when you’re mid-movie.
Make sure to locate the audio jack on the back or bottom of your projector. There will likely be a few different jacks on there, so be sure to utilize the correct one – it will likely be well-labeled.
Once you’ve plugged the adaptor in, then you’ll need to take a peek at the adaptor’s instruction manual as provided by the manufacturer. Since most adaptors have one or two buttons on them, the instructions usually provide a series of clicks that need to be performed to get the device to enter pairing mode.
After pairing mode has been activated, turn pairing on your speaker as well. It may take a few tries to ensure that the devices sync, so double-check the manufacturer instructions, but this process will likely take less than ten minutes if you’re taking care.
Connecting your wireless Bluetooth speakers to a projector can seem like a daunting endeavor. With home devices becoming more technologically advanced every month, modernization can leave us feeling a little stupid. However, with some easy tips, you’ll be empowered to use your wireless speakers and projector for a family movie night or a party with friends.
Depending on whether your projector has Bluetooth capability, you might need to use a few tools to help you connect your streaming device to the projector. If your device doesn’t have Bluetooth access, you’ll need either an audio cable or a Bluetooth adaptor.
Enjoying the use of your home projector and speakers doesn’t have to be an impossible task. Just follow these few tips and enjoy your flicks.
Check out my top picks for wireless speaker kits.
Jason is a home theater expert with over 10 years of experience in setting up home cinema rooms and systems. What started out as a hobby soon transformed him into an authority in the audio-visual field. He is passionate about providing readers with accurate and up-to-date information on the latest audiovisual technologies and their applications for home theaters. Read more about Jason.