What The Tech?: Digital Halloween Decorations

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CHARLOTTE NC – There’s always a house on Halloween that gets more attention than others in the neighborhood. And I’m not talking about giving full-size candy bars. I’m talking about decorations. You can put the pumpkins on the porch if you want, but the new trend of digital decorations is becoming more and more affordable if you don’t mind a little DIY.

What are digital decorations? Most often, these are animated videos projected on doors, garage doors and windows. It’s easy and quite affordable. If you’re on TikTok, you’ll find plenty of examples by searching #halloween or #digitaldecorations.

How do you do?

First, you will need a digital projector. You can find them for under $60 online, but the best projectors can cost upwards of $400. Expensive projectors are a great investment if you want to show movies on the big screen outdoors. Otherwise, inexpensive projectors will work well for digital decorations. Just make sure the projector can play video from a USB drive or SD card, or stream video from a phone or tablet.

You will need the scary or Halloween type video. You can find free digital videos on YouTube that will work well. Some however will be interrupted by advertisements. I found a good selection of digital files on ATMOSfx.com ranging in price from $9 to multi-themed video packages for $59, from scary to not too scary, to terrifying.

These files will be looped and accompanied by the audio. Atmos has a huge selection of videos for Halloween and other holidays.

Once you have the video and the projector, you will need to determine where you want the video to appear. Horizontal videos play well on garage doors and through large windows. Vertical videos look best in narrow windows and doors.

The file I purchased has the vertical format to play inside my entryway storm door. To give her something to play the video on, I bought a cheap $1 shower curtain liner and taped it to the inside of the door.

I then took the projector and turned it on its side so the video would fill the doorway. I put the video file on a USB key but my projector also has a slot for an SD card.

When I turned on the projector and pressed play, the creepy video sounded so realistic that friends told me it was too scary for trick-or-treaters. The next file I purchased was one that featured dancing cartoon monsters. I tried it on an upstairs bedroom window and on the garage door.

It looks fantastic and is sure to grab people’s attention when walking or driving around our neighborhood.

In total, the digital Halloween decoration costs around $80. $70 for the projector, $9 for the file, and $1 for the shower curtain liner.

Granted, it’s only for a window or garage door, but DIYing it myself, I feel like it was an inexpensive way to dress up our house for Halloween.

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