The 10 Best Portable Projectors
Our Picks in Detail
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* Last update of prices was on 2019-01-18 10:20:36 via PA API. Prices or conditions may have changed in the meantime.
10 Best Portable Projector Alternatives
Portable Projector Buying Guide
First, you need to know what you intend to use the projector for. Are you planning to screen slides or movies? Will you be using the projector outside or inside? Many projectors that are created for indoor use cannot be used outside. Similarly, projectors created for outdoor use may perform poorly indoors. How often do you intend to move your portable projector? Different projectors have different levels of required setup. How often are you going to use your projector? If you'll be using it often, it makes sense to budget more money for it than if you were only going to use it once or twice a year.
High Quality Outdoor ProjectorsSome portable projectors are created specifically with outdoor use in mind. Most of these can also be used inside the home, though their picture is large enough that you may need a home theater to accommodate them.
The ViewSonic PJD5155 3300 Lumens SVGA HDMI Projector is a portable projector designed for outdoor use. It's available for three hundred dollars on Amazon. The rich colors make the picture viewable in both bright and dim settings. The projector comes with an amplified speaker that enhances the sound, so it's ideal if you need sound to cover a wide space. The interface includes an optional cable management system as well as a tactile keyboard. This projector also has a three year warranty on parts and labor, as well as a one year warranty on its lamp. The warranty is always an important factor when considering any expensive purchase! The throw distance of the projector is 1.0 to 8.0 meters, meaning light can be thrown from up to eight meters away.
Another high quality ViewSonic projector is the PJD5233 300-Inch 720i Front Projector This projector differs from the PJD5155 in several ways. Most dramatic is the price hike, as this projector will cost around six hundred dollars. But the price hike is well deserved since this projector offers features the other does not. The resolution is 1024x768, a higher resolution than the PJD5155. This projector also comes with an optical zoom lens and an "eco mode," which allows you to save power. The slim design makes it more easily maneuverable than the PJD5155, so it's great if you want to travel. This projector also has 3D capabilities. Its images are as clear and bright as the Lumens. The three year warranty for parts and labor plus one year warranty for the lamp remains the same.
The Syhonic 70SP HD LED Mini Video Projector can project images from 18 to 150 inches, depending on how far back you put the projector. The native resolution is 800x480p, but it can support 1080p resolutions for a clearer picture. The lamp will never need a replacement because its life is twenty thousand hours. This projector comes with several ports including AV/VGA//SD/HDMI/USB, so you can project images from a wide variety of devices. It's small enough to be taken on camping trips. Priced at only ninety dollars, this is an economic buy.
The Meyoung Portable Projector is another economic buy, priced at eighty dollars. It has HDMI, SD, and USB capability. The projector comes with an amplified loudspeaker, good for broadcasting to large audiences. The throw distance is between 4.9 and 13.2 feet, and the brightness is 1200 Lumens. It's ideal for people who want to watch a movie outdoors at a party, or project a video from their laptop onto the big screen at home.
For all-around quality, the best outdoor projector is the ViewSonic PJD5155. It has a higher brightness and throw distance than most of the others while still being economically priced. The ViewSonic PJD5233 is best for people who want special features or plan to project content to a large audience. It's highly priced, but for good reason. The Syhonic and Meyoung projectors are both economic buys. The Syhonic edges out the Meyoung in terms of portability and ease of use, but the Meyoung is the cheapest option.
Indoor ProjectorsSome portable projectors aren't designed for outdoor use. These are usually built for in-home theaters. They often have features that outdoor projectors don't, but their brightness is lower since they aren't in use during the day.
The BenQ DLP Video Projector with SVGA Display is designed for offices and costs about three hundred dollars. Its 3300 Lumens display is bright and colorful. This is a projector designed for business rather than pleasure. For people who need to show video presentations in meetings and frequently move from place to place, this projector is a handy tool. The lamp life is ten thousand hours, so the lamp never needs to be replaced. However, this projector works best in small to medium sized rooms. It shouldn't be used for large spaces.
The Epson Home Cinema 2040 1080p 3D 3LCD Home Theater Projector is intended for recreational use. It can project images from up to twelve feet away and has a brightness of 2200 Lumens. It also comes with a two year limited warranty. Its lamp lasts for four thousand hours in normal mode and over seven thousand in ECO mode. ECO mode allows you to save power. It has two HDMI connector ports, as well as two RCA ports, a VGA port, and a USB port. Because of the extremely high picture quality and 3D optimization, this is a pricey buy, running more than six hundred dollars.
The BenQ DLP HD 1080p Projector (HT2050) is another high quality projector. Unlike the other recommended BenQ product, this projector is intended for home use. It's even more expensive than the Epson, costing over seven hundred dollars. With that said, the images projected are extremely high quality. Not only can the projector use 3D images and 1080p resolutions, but it has an all-glass cinema grade lens for the most crystalline picture possible. This is another energy efficient projector. And the images it projects can be up to 300 inches across.
The Epson EX3240 SVGA 3LCD Projector is less expensive, running a little under three hundred dollars. It uses 3-chip technology to project more accurate color. However, the projector has a resolution of 800x600, which is meant more for short video presentations than movies. It also only has an HDMI cable rather than multiple ports.
The ELEPHAS 1200 Lumens LED Mini Video Projector is the most economic indoor projector, costing about eighty dollars. Its small and compact design makes it more portable than some of the other projectors. It is environmentally friendly and has both an HDMI and USB port. This projector comes with a 12 month warranty. The biggest drawback is the low brightness - you will have to be in a dark room to see the screen.
For business, the ELEPHAS is the most economic option while the BENQ DLP with SVGA display has a much higher brightness. For home theaters, the most economic option is the Epson EX3240 SVGA 3LCD. But the Epson Home Cinema 2040 1080p 3D 3LCD Home Theater Projector and The BenQ DLP HD 1080p Projector (HT2050) provide much better quality images. The BenQ should be prioritized if you want a large, crystalline image.
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