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#371299 - 09/10/2018 19:53 Portable projector recommendations?
Roger
carpal tunnel

Registered: 18/01/2000
Posts: 5581
Loc: London, UK
The offsite meeting room that we use for our team meetings wants to charge us 75 for the use of a projector. I can buy a projector on Amazon for less than that.

But is it worth it? Are there any good cheap portable projectors?
_________________________
-- roger

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#371301 - 09/10/2018 23:28 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12074
Loc: Sterling, VA
Good cheap portable. As far as I've seen you can have two.

This is the type of thing I offload to the Wirecutter:

https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/the-best-pico-projector/
_________________________
Matt

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#371305 - 11/10/2018 09:31 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
Shonky
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/01/2002
Posts: 1965
Loc: Brisbane, Australia
Dirt cheap projectors usually have crappy low native resolutions like 800x480. They spout "Full HD" since they accept that but just downscale. Usually they are fairly upfront if you read the details though.
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Christian
#40104192 120Gb (no longer in my E36 M3, won't fit the E46 M3)

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#371306 - 11/10/2018 11:37 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Which is why Matt's suggestion looks very interesting.. 1280x800 native.

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#371309 - 11/10/2018 12:45 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
tahir
pooh-bah

Registered: 27/02/2004
Posts: 1752
Loc: London
Thanks Matt (& Roger) been looking at getting a projector too.

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#371313 - 12/10/2018 14:30 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
This one, VANKYO Leisure 510, is much cheaper and seems to have excellent reviews. Not a "in the palm of your hand size", but that means it probably can run cooler as well:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/VANKYO-Leisure-Projector-Projection-Carrying/dp/B07GWSGW5H/ref=sr_1_2

Link above is for the UK; look on Amazon.ca or Amazon.com for reviews.

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#371315 - 14/10/2018 04:50 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
Shonky
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/01/2002
Posts: 1965
Loc: Brisbane, Australia
Originally Posted By: mlord
Which is why Matt's suggestion looks very interesting.. 1280x800 native.

A long way short of less than 75 GBP though mentioned in Roger's post.
_________________________
Christian
#40104192 120Gb (no longer in my E36 M3, won't fit the E46 M3)

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#371317 - 14/10/2018 12:15 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Ah. For some reason I had assumed it was 75 quid PER MEETING. smile

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#371318 - 14/10/2018 15:19 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
Roger
carpal tunnel

Registered: 18/01/2000
Posts: 5581
Loc: London, UK
Originally Posted By: mlord
Ah. For some reason I had assumed it was 75 quid PER MEETING. smile


It is. So even a 400 projector will amortise out fairly quickly.
_________________________
-- roger

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#371320 - 14/10/2018 20:43 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Yup, as would the larger/cheaper 160 projector as well.

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#371358 - 04/11/2018 02:09 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Funny, but this thread got me going again on projectors. I've never owned one before (too dim, too expensive, poor bulb life), but with the flood of low priced transmissive LCD projectors from Asia.. hard to resist.

So.. I found this ABOX A6 Projector on Amazon Canada: native 1920x1080, 200 ANSI lumens (or 4000 "marketing" Lumens), for a mere CAD$369, or about 218. smile

Given the generally very positive reception of their 100 720p model (ABOX A2), I figured the new 1080p version might be worth a try. Should be here tomorrow. I'll post a review on Amazon afterward, and will probably follow-up here again as well.

Cheers
Mark


Attachments
abox_a6.png

Description: ABOX A6



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#371359 - 05/11/2018 15:18 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
tahir
pooh-bah

Registered: 27/02/2004
Posts: 1752
Loc: London
I'd be particularly interested to know how it deals with Powerpoint type stuff in daylight, thanks Mark

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#371360 - 05/11/2018 16:26 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: tahir]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: tahir
I'd be particularly interested to know how it deals with Powerpoint type stuff in daylight, thanks Mark


Well, it is 11:20am and overcast outside, and I have the four pot lights on in my study. Here's what it looks like. Click on the link for FULL SIZE shot from my phone cam. That's a 69" diagonal display (the illuminated portion of a much larger screen) at 7' from the projector lens.


Attachments
IMG_20181105_112254.jpg (21 downloads)
thumbnail.jpg



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#371361 - 05/11/2018 17:05 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
My Amazon review of this is now live on the ABOX A6 product page, or directly here.

Summary: Cheap/noisy real 1080p. Good for a dim room.


Edited by mlord (05/11/2018 17:07)

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#371362 - 06/11/2018 14:46 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12074
Loc: Sterling, VA
Originally Posted By: mlord
My Amazon review of this is now live on the ABOX A6 product page, or directly here.

Summary: Cheap/noisy real 1080p. Good for a dim room.

That seems pretty decent, actually. Especially that last photo of the people in the stands. More visible than I'd expect in a room that bright. Though it looks like your lights were off in that one which probably changed the white balance and light levels of your camera.

I recently installed one of these for one of my clients. This was in a legit home theater with no windows and tiered seating and all that. If it were MY 11K sqft home I'd go with a more impressive projector, but I usually don't have the last word in these situations smile It looked pretty good, but not quite as crisp or bright as I would have hoped.

The biggest issue I would have is the noise level. I was able to get the projector mounted as close to the ceiling as possible without having to adjust keystone too much. It's about 6' away from the heads of the people sitting farthest away from it. At that position I still found the fan noise distracting. I don't know, I've never had a projector in a home of my own, so I don't know what the ongoing experience is like, but I would need as quiet a fan as possible.

I think if I ever get my basement home theater going, I'll go with a projector like this one. Very bright (from what I can tell it's 2500 ANSI lumens), and the reviewers say the fan is pretty quiet.

I so want to build my home theater. All the wiring is run from when we recovered from a basement flooding, we've just had so many other projects to take care of before buying a bunch of home theater equipment...
_________________________
Matt

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#371363 - 06/11/2018 19:31 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
I have decided that the fan noise is simply TOO LOUD to stick with it. Pity that, because it does have an LED bulb in it that will likely never need replacing. But.. back to Amazon with it.

Stepping up a notch now, to a DLP.

This BenQ MH530FHD 1080p 3300 Lumens DLP Projector (USA link here) has very positive reviews, and fan noise claims of around 29dB, which should be realistic (DLP bulbs can run hotter than LED bulbs, so the cooling need not be as intense, or so they say).

It also has a slightly shorter throw than the equivalent Optoma projector, and that's important for a smaller room.

The price here is about CAD$200 more than the budget ABOX A6, but it will be a LOT brighter as well as hopefully a lot quieter. Should be here tomorrow evening, so we'll see.

Cheers

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#371364 - 06/11/2018 21:25 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12074
Loc: Sterling, VA
Oooo that looks like a good choice. I might have to go with something like that too, if I ever get my act together. My basement is pretty dark but has some window wells, and a sliding door on the other end. I'll need all the brightness I can get. That also appears to be the new budget pick by Wirecutter.

Thanks for reminding me about getting the real brightness for these things. That Optoma I set up is marketed as 3300 but from what I can find online is ANSI 2350.
_________________________
Matt

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#371365 - 07/11/2018 02:42 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
The current cheap native 1080p Optoma DLP is the HD27, with 3200 ANSI lumens. It and the BenQ above are pretty much the only two in their class. Costco also sells it here for the same price as Amazon, just a few bucks more than the BenQ.

I've chosen the BenQ on price, slightly shorter throw, and on an ever so slightly lower fan noise rating. Arriving here tomorrow evening.

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#371366 - 08/11/2018 03:56 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: mlord
I've chosen the BenQ on price, slightly shorter throw, and on an ever so slightly lower fan noise rating. Arriving here tomorrow evening.


The BenQ MH530FHD arrived, it is better. A LOT better.

Fan is still Loud by my uneducated reckoning, but not LOUD like the ABOX A6. It kinda vanishes from prominence while watching/listening to video content.

Picture quality is friggin' AMAZING!!

Colours are strong and smooth, brightness is fine with all of the room lights on, but contrast is much better in dim light typical of a home theater setup.

Oddly, with the ABOX I suffered slight motion queasiness watching stuff with the screen size set more than about 80" diagonal. No such issue with the BENQ -- 100" diagonal is just fine with my inner ear. Dunno why they differ, but they do.

I haven't had opportunity to try it in daylight yet, but there's no doubt it will be watchable then.

More later, after I work out the best projector and screen placements here.

Cheers

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#371367 - 08/11/2018 13:28 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Here's another odd difference that really puzzles me. With the ABOX A6 projector, my venerable Zotac ZBOX ION2 computer that I use for MythTV was producing pink/magenta tones rather than reds when feeding out over HDMI.

I could unplug the cable from the ZBOX, plug it into my notebook, play the same content, and.. red, not magenta. Move the cable back to the ZBOX and it's pink/magenta again.

Now the weird bit: If I instead use the DVI-D output of the ZBOX, with a dongle to convert to an HDMI connector, and then the same cable etc.. from there to the projector: red, not pink. WTF?

The new BenQ projector doesn't seem to care: red is red, from either the HDMI or DVI-D source ports of the ZBOX.

So.. it's only a curiosity at this point, as the ABOX A6 has been sent back to Amazon. I'm keeping the BenQ. Just have to find a mounting position to give me the screen height+size that I want.

Cheers

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#371368 - 08/11/2018 14:37 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Here it is with some direct sunlight leaking through the 90% shade blinds this morning. Perfectly watchable and MUCH better in-person than the photo makes it appear. But it is obviously lacking the same contrast it would get in less bright conditions.


Attachments
sunlight.jpg

sunlight2.jpg




Edited by mlord (08/11/2018 14:42)

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#371369 - 08/11/2018 19:20 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12074
Loc: Sterling, VA
I assume that the rainbow effect is just a photography issue and not something you're seeing live? I've heard some people can have an issue with that on DLP projectors.
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Matt

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#371370 - 08/11/2018 20:37 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Dignan]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 31203
Loc: Seattle, WA
It's gotta be, yeah.

Very short exposure time for the camera shutter would "freeze" the cycling of the color filter so that you only see 1/3 of the refresh cycle in the photograph.

I'm glad you guys are discussing this here, because I have frequently thought about whether I would want to switch to a projector system, and it's good to see how the state of the art is doing. I'm not ready to switch to a projector yet, but it's interesting to see this.
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Tony Fabris

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#371371 - 08/11/2018 21:16 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Dignan]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: Dignan
I assume that the rainbow effect is just a photography issue and not something you're seeing live? I've heard some people can have an issue with that on DLP projectors.


Ah, yes.. strictly the camera seeing that, not me. No noticeable "rainbow" effect at all, and I've run a LOT of content through it now.

From what I have read, I think this BenQ uses a RGBRGB wheel. Not sure how fast it spins though.

Very very pleased with this projector!

Now I am trying to get a permanent screen setup worked out, aiming for 100" diagonal at about 10' from the viewers' eyes. I have ordered a fiberglass backed 100" pull-down from Amazon -- Costco also has a similar item for $100 less though. And if I can work out how to store a shop-built rigid screen the cost will be about $20 instead. smile

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#371372 - 08/11/2018 21:27 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: tfabris]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: tfabris
I'm glad you guys are discussing this here, because I have frequently thought about whether I would want to switch to a projector system


For sure. My motivation is to have my office/study do extra duty as a part-time home theater setup, in addition to its current role as part-time guest room with a sofa bed. smile

So the setup has to be out of the way of normal functionality when not in use -- roll-up screen (or fold up or similar), and the projector will sit in the existing bookshelves. The surround system (Logitech Z-5500) is also easily tucked away.

There's just no place I could put any decent sized LCD in there (walls are covered with shelving, floor covered with worktables etc.), and going with a projector permits a massively large display that takes up no space when not in use.

And with the BenQ, I am pleasantly astonished at just how good a projected display can be, and this one compares quite favourably with our 42" LCD TV (in another room).


Attachments
100_inch_Zaha.jpg

Description: 100-inch display at 10 feet.



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#371373 - 09/11/2018 23:12 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: mlord
The current cheap native 1080p Optoma DLP is the HD27, with 3200 ANSI lumens. It and the BenQ above are pretty much the only two in their class. Costco also sells it here ..

What the heck.. I've just ordered the HD27 from Costco so that I can do a head-to-head comparison of the two, and also to see if the HD27 is quieter or not.

The BenQ is a lot quieter than the ABOX A6, but is still louder than I would like for a projector that is sitting more or less directly over my head. The Optoma HD27 has a larger vertical offset, so I should be able to mount it another 6-7 inches higher up, which in-theory would reduce perceived noise levels. We'll see. smile

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#371378 - 13/11/2018 02:55 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
Dignan
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/03/2000
Posts: 12074
Loc: Sterling, VA
Originally Posted By: mlord
Originally Posted By: Dignan
I assume that the rainbow effect is just a photography issue and not something you're seeing live? I've heard some people can have an issue with that on DLP projectors.


Ah, yes.. strictly the camera seeing that, not me. No noticeable "rainbow" effect at all, and I've run a LOT of content through it now.

From what I've been reading, apparently sensitivity to the "rainbow effect" varies from person to person. I don't think it affects most folks.

That image looks good, Mark! Is the projector pretty dead-on straight? I ask because it looks like you've aligned it perfectly within a screen that has no bezels, as I don't see light spilling to the surfaces behind the screen (from what I can tell).

I'll be curious about your comparison to the Optoma. I found the model I installed to be pretty loud. And yeah, it also had a crazy vertical offset.

What material would you use for a screen, if going with the $20 option? laugh
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Matt

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#371380 - 13/11/2018 03:37 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: Roger]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Yeah, I have the BenQ (in that photo) aligned perfectly with the 100" screen there, with zero keystone correction used. Looks really nice, but I do have a 100" pull-down fibreglass-backed screen on order: much easier to stow when not in use. smile

The home-brew screen is just a cut-down sheet of factory-primed (white) hardboard (aka. Masonite). A light coloured wall of sufficient size would also do the trick, and the BenQ even has "paint colour correction" in the menus!

The Optoma HD27 arrives here tomorrow. I'll be doing a very direct comparison between the two to figure out which to keep and which to send back. In theory, the new Optoma HD27 fan (24dB or 26dB?) is quieter than the BenQ (29dB).. in practice, we'll see.

The Optoma does have a larger "offset", which means I can mount it higher up and still be straight onto the screen. And mounting higher means further from the fan noise.

Cheers

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#371382 - 13/11/2018 18:27 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
mlord
carpal tunnel

Registered: 29/08/2000
Posts: 13916
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: mlord
The Optoma HD27 arrives here tomorrow. I'll be doing a very direct comparison between the two


The Optoma HD27 arrived here this afternoon, and the "head to head" comparison took all of five minutes to declare a runaway winner..

Returning the Optoma to Costco -- it has a high frequency whine (the colour wheel?) that makes it intolerable. Fan noise is similar to the BenQ, perhaps ever so slightly softer. But that whine.. Forget it. And the remote control works only if I stand in front of the projector and point it directly at the sensor. Duh.

The BenQ MH530FHD is the (rather obvious) keeper.

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#371383 - 13/11/2018 18:41 Re: Portable projector recommendations? [Re: mlord]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 31203
Loc: Seattle, WA
Originally Posted By: mlord
A light coloured wall of sufficient size would also do the trick, and the BenQ even has "paint colour correction" in the menus!


Okay, that's really awesome. I had a friend many years ago who used a projector on his living room wall. It worked well except for all the movies had a slightly tan tinge to them. It's great that the projector manufacturers are taking that into account.
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Tony Fabris

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