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Troubleshooting Optoma HD20 Projector Problems

Updated on January 8, 2016
Max Dalton profile image

Max holds a B.S. in mass communications from SIU, an M.A. in communications from U of I, and is pursuing an MBA from Webster University.


Common problems with the Optoma HD20 projector include the image becoming out of focus, the image not displaying, images appearing distorted, images not being positioned correctly, the projector not responding and more. Try resolving your problems with the projector through troubleshooting before contacting the manufacturer or kicking the expensive projector to the curb.

The Optoma HD20 projector supports HDMI, RGB, component and composite connections.
The Optoma HD20 projector supports HDMI, RGB, component and composite connections. | Source

Image Not Focused

  • Twist the ring around the projector's lens adjust the projector's focus. It's important to remember that even the slightest move can result in the projector falling out of focus. As a result, always re-focus the projector after moving it.
  • The projector may be outside of its optimal range, which is between 5 and 33 feet away from the screen. Positioning the projector any distance away from the screen that's outside of this range may result in an out-of-focus picture that's not possible to correct.

No Picture

  • Your video cables may be loose or have become disconnected. Push the video cables into any connecting jacks to ensure this isn't the problem. Also, check the video cables for signs of damage, such as fraying. If you notice any damage, try using a different video cable, as the damage to your existing cable may be more severe than you thought. Even if you don't see any signs of physical damage to the cable, there may still be some. As a result, try using a different video cable anyway to see if the end result is still the same.
  • The lamp may not be seated properly in the projector. This can be the result of the lamp being moved over the course of time, dropped, having absorbed a shock of some kind or having been installed incorrectly. Check the lamp by doing the following:
  1. Power down your Optoma HD20 projector and allow at least a half hour for it to cool down if you've recently been using it.
  2. Disconnect any cables connected to the projector, then turn the Optoma HD20 projector upside down and position it so the lens is facing you.
  3. Loosen the two screws on the right side of the lamp cover, located in the lower-right side of the bottom of the projector, which is facing you, and then remove the lamp cover.
  4. Remove the two screws on the top and bottom of the top section of the lamp securing it to the projector.
  5. Grab the small handle in the center of the lamp, then carefully lift and remove the lamp from the projector.
  6. Re-position the lamp over the connector in the bottom of the lamp bay and then push down firmly to ensure the lamp is solidly connected to the projector.replace the two screws that secure the lamp to the projector, and then replace the two screws that fasten the cover to the projector. Ensure that all of the screws are tightened up snugly and aren't loose; loose screws can cause the projector to wiggle free over time or be more sensitive to being bumped or dropped, which can result in more frequent image problems.

Video Looks Stretched or Bunched Up

This problem can be the result of the aspect ratio on your Optoma projector and the video device connected to the projector not outputting the same aspect ratio. For example, if you have a DVD player connected to the projector and it's set up to output in a 16:9 aspect ratio but your project is set up to output in a 4:3 aspect ratio, the outputted video isn't going to look right. First, check the video output settings on your connected video device. Then, open your Optoma HD20 projector's menu and select the "Display" option. Set the Format option to either 4:3, 16:9 or LBX.

Backward, Upside Down or Mirrored Image

If your image is clear but upside down, mirrored or otherwise isn't positioned the way it should be, someone may have adjusted the projector's internal Positioning option, re-positioned the projector or you're projecting the image onto a different screen. Either way, do the following to work through the different projection options to find the one that works for you:

  1. Open the projector's menu and then select "System."
  2. Highlight "Projection."
  3. Test the various options in this section until you find the one that works best for your image.

Optoma HD20 Projector Doesn't Respond / Lamp Dies

If the projector doesn't respond when you press any of the buttons, you need to reset the device. Do this by disconnecting the devices power cable from its power supply and waiting for at least two minutes. After two minutes, reconnect the power cable and try powering the Optoma HD20 projector on. If the projector makes a loud popping sound and then shuts off, the lamp is dead and needs to be replaced; if this happens, the projector won't power back on until the lamp is replaced. You can replace the Optoma HD20 projector lamp by following the steps outlined in the No Picture section.


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