Upgrading old projector instead of buying a new lamp?

Instead of buying a TV I bought a used projector on the cheap roughly one year ago, for 50€ I got a Panasonic PT AX100e with 1200 hours runtime on the lamp. It’s 720p and honestly produces a pretty nice picture which is great for couch gaming as well as watching movies. Now comes the time where I probably have to swap the lamp, I’m at 2600 hours runtime and I’m getting a “change lamp” message every once in a while. Since a new lamp costs 100+€, more than double what I paid for the projector itself, should I just buy a new one instead?

From the research I did it seems like newer projectors with LED lamps consume way less power, which means more quiet cooling and longer lamp lives as well. That and a true 1080p projector would be the main reason for the upgrade, I’m also afraid that the old projector might break before the new lamp reaches the end of its lifespan, but I’m not sure how well founded those fears are.

Any advice? If I have to upgrade I’d also gladly take advice on projectors in general, it seems that I’d get a decent model for 500€ from BenQ or other manufacturers but I’m open to all suggestions.

LED projectors do use a lot less power, and the element will likely last much longer. However LED projectors are normally not very bright at all compared with three conventional bulb type. And decent quality/brightness led projectors tent to be quite expensive. So check around, see if you can find and brightness stats to compare and check reviews etc.

Try factory reset and maybe you get another 1200 hours

That makes sense, I wrongly assumed that most modern projectors were LED at this point but the ones I was looking at around the 500€ mark use conventional bulbs. They do say that they last anywhere from 5000 hours to 8000 hours but I suppose those numbers could be as inflated as contrast values on monitors or TVs.

@anon25377527 I already reset the timer to get rid of the message, might as well run it until it dies completely.

I did also find some cheap replacement lamps for 50€-80€ that are compatible with my model, that would hurt less than paying 150€ for the official replacement lamp, but then again can I claim warranty if those die after a few dozen or hundred hours? Not sure how good amazon or other sites are with these types of returns after a few months or a year.

We have close to 200 projectors in daily use in training rooms and they are mid-tier NEC/BENQ so nothing special. They hardly ever go wrong but we never push the bulbs and swap them when required with quality spares.

So it’s your risk but I would say that if a bulb is pushed too far and fails with a bang then that’s when you are likely to break your projector.