Although their picture quality cannot be compared to that of high-end televisions, they benefit from the versatility and pocket-size dimensions. Whether you just want to play the latest NETFLIX movie in your backyard or want to make a presentation at your client’s office, the Pico projector is an excellent tool.
Mini projectors fall in the middle of the pack in the modern-day projector market. For buyers with small or bigger budgets, the options for micro projectors are limitless.
When Are Mini Projectors Useful?
Just like the commonly used business projectors, mini projectors are extremely versatile tools for business and home users alike. Physically, they are designed like small set-top boxes or large mobile handsets. If your desire is to show content like videos, movies or games outside of your living room, a pico projector is very portable and easy to move from one place to another. It is also possible to connect an Apple or Android smartphone to your mini projector provided you have a video output accessory.
A mini projector can also be useful in the office. This gadget is easy to tote in your bag or briefcase, and a majority of them have impressive battery ratings; two qualities that make a pocket mini projector perfect for making presentations on the go.
Before we can look at the best pocket mini projector reviews for 2018. let’s look at attributes you should consider when buying a mini projector.
Top 5 Best Mini Projector s
1. Optoma ML750ST LED Projector
The Optoma ML750ST LED projector’s stellar construction and excellent in-class performance make it a perfect centerpiece for your boardroom or living room. This projector touts a resolution of 1280X800 pixels and has the capability to upscale video content up to 1080i. Despite being an LED projector, the Optoma’s picture quality is in line with most modern, laser-based mini projectors. This gadget has a short throw ratio of 0.8:1 which makes it an excellent device to project images of pristine quality. This projector doesn’t need to be far away from the display surface so as to project a large image.
This mini projector has many standard connectivity options in addition to an integrated document reader for use in office presentations. It’s possible to display DOC and PDF file formats from a USB drive without connecting to a laptop. The projector’s excellent design suits its outside design. It is among the smallest mini projectors with dimensions of 4.2X4.1X1.5 inches and 0.8 pounds of weight.
– Phenomenal image quality and contrast ratio
– Light in weight
– Robustly built
– Easy to set up
– Lacks Bluetooth audio support
– Has no battery option
2. AAXA M5 Mini Projector
Being one of the flagship models in AAXA’s mini projector lineup, this gadget’s strength lies in its focus on the details and fundamentals. This LED-based mini projector boasts of a 1280X800 pixel resolution and has the capability to upscale your video content to 1080p. This projector also comes with a bulb with a brightness rating of 900 lumens. The AAXA M5 mini projector also features a full suite of business and home user-friendly connectivity options. The sides and rear of this mini projector include full-size HDMI input, VGA support, a micro SD slot, standard 3.5 mm audio output and a composite video support.
With regards to the build quality, this projector is sturdily built, and with only 1.9 pounds of weight, this gadget is easily portable. Besides being a pocket size projector, the AAXA M5 also comes with a case that has a 5-inch tripod that you can use to adjust it in large rooms. It also has a remote that helps with aspects such as volume control and keystone angle adjustment.
– Excellent zoom capabilities
– The build quality is excellent
– The brightness is perfect for use during the day
– This projector is very easy to use
– Wide variety of inputs and outputs
– This projector can be noisy
– The image quality is not bright for some purposes
3. LG PH550 Minibeam Projector
If you’re a home theater enthusiast or user looking for a versatile mini projector, then the LG PH550 has numerous options for you. Unlike many other mini projectors, this projector is slightly bulkier with dimensions of 6.9X4.3X1.7 inches in addition to 1.4 pounds of weight. Either way, it is a lot easier to carry around compared to the standard full-sized projectors. All over the body, this projector boasts of a deep bench of port options. Besides the standard HDMI input, composite video and USB storage support, this projector touts a coaxial connector and Bluetooth audio output. With the coaxial connector, it’s possible to hook your mini projector to an over-the-air television broadcast.
An impressive aspect about this mini projector is its wireless mirroring function which connects it to a tablet or smartphone accessing all the necessary content for projection. The gadget’s LED lamp can display rich, natural colors for up to 30,000 hours. This implies that the lamp will function for ten years without the need for replacement.
– Makes small test perfectly readable
– Excellent selection of connectivity options
– Has a fast boot up speed
– Delivers 550 lumens which are sufficient for daytime presentations
– Good battery life
– Has a relatively large form factor
– Lacks a micro SD slot
4. Philips PPX4935 Pocket Projector
For basic business users and home entertainment enthusiasts, this mini projector offers a strong set of features and a steady build quality. Externally, this gadget is among the smallest mini projectors with dimensions of 4.5X4.5X1.3 inches and weighing 0.77 pounds. Because of the Led technology and SmartEngine System integrated into this projector, you will enjoy colorful, bright and perfectly contrasted high-definition images. This projector is not short of connectivity options from Wi-Fi to HDMI and the screen mirroring function that lets you share web content or project videos and pictures directly from your smartphone, tablet or personal computer.
Although this mini projector comes with a standard remote for settings and navigation, it’s possible to control it through menus available on the easy-to-navigate touchpad on the top. Better yet, the Philips PPX4935 Pocket Projector comes with a Bluetooth audio function that helps you connect it to external speaker for exceptional sound and home cinema experience. Its battery power offers autonomy and mobility so you can easily make presentations, watch movies or view pictures for 2 hours without recharging.
– The display is bright and clear
– Long battery life
– The projector is small and light
– This projector is easy to use
– Touchpad is too sensitive thus resulting in inaccuracy
– Mobile phone mirroring quality is poor
– Lacks out-of-box support standards like VGA
5. Vivitek Qumi Q8 Pocket Projector
In a highly competitive product category like mini projectors, Vivitek definitely deserves a bit of credit for making this gadget stand out. You can buy this projector in an array of primary colors with polished and bold finishes. Weighing 1.08 pounds and having modest dimensions of 6.3X4X1.3, the Q5 isn’t noticeably bulky or heavy and can be thrown in a bag when you’re heading out for a presentation with your board members. This mini projector also comes with a remote the size of a gum pack that features several options such as volume control and input switching that give it some added versatility.
A slight inconvenience about this gadget is that it lacks an internal battery which implies that it can only be used when plugged into a socket outlet. On the flip side, however, this mini projector boasts of a 4GB built-in memory in addition to a USB port for memory expansion. This projector’s numerous connectivity options allow you to use it on various portable devices like but not limited to tablets, smartphones, and laptops. Compact and versatile, this device is excellent for sharing content at home or work.
– Has a steady brightness which is excellent for dark and bright viewing environments
– Simple remote menu system
– The projector’s fan is pretty quiet
– Very sharp images
– The built-in speakers have thin sound
– Comes with no battery
– Doesn’t have a micro SD slot
Buying A Mini Projector: What Attributes Should You Consider?
Picture Quality and Brightness
A majority of mini projectors are manufactured around either LED or laser projection hardware. While both hardware aspects have their weaknesses and strengths concerning the image quality, their differences are a telltale indicator of the essence of brightness. Particularly if you will project in a non-traditional environment such as in the outdoors or during the day with a lot of ambient light in the room, you will require a projector that’s bright enough to create pictures that are crystal clear. A projector with a brightness rating of not less than 250 lumens will display any kind of media in almost all environments.
The technical image quality also plays a major role in your overall viewing experience. It is important to evaluate your desired projector’s color accuracy by measuring how well it renders an array of colors. Although laser projectors normally have low brightness ratings, their projection hardware is usually more superior to that of traditional LED projectors.
Before buying a mini projector, it is worth noting that audio fidelity is rarely a strength for most pico projectors. Due to their small sizes, these projectors often have to rely on one low-powered speaker for purposes of audio output. Although some high-end projector models normally have speakers that can be used at high volumes, the audio quality is in most cases poorly defined and thin. A majority of Pico projectors usually come with Bluetooth or 3.5mm audio output support so they can connect to an external speaker for excellent audio quality.
Picture Quality and Resolution
Just like standard desktops and home laptops, every projector is typically designed with a specific resolution. The default resolution usually varies from one projector to the other but can be compared to the standard or HD television. Better yet, a majority of low-resolution projectors can still display HD content such as video games and Blu-ray movies, but since the image must be downsized, the image quality is generally compromised.
Throw Distance and Room Size
If you will need to frequently more your projector from one board room to the other, make sure you are well versed with its throw specifications. The projector’s throw ratio significantly determines the screen size range and is calculated by dividing the distance of the projector from the screen by the projected image’s width. A projector with a small throw ratio is going to display a large image when close to the surface being projected on while models with large throw ratios must be positioned further away in order to create a large display.
A mini projector is a portable gadget, and if you’re always on the go, you will need its battery to last. While it will rarely occur that you have to use your projector where there are no power outlets, it’s overly inconvenient to tailor your use to the period your battery lasts. Most mainstream projectors come with batteries that last between one and three hours.
If you’re a home user, you will only require an HDMI port, but if you are a business user, you will need a mini projector with an array of connection options. If you have to move between business and offices, there is no guarantee that you will be connecting to devices with modern outputs and inputs. Besides the conventional HDMI ports, a business-friendly mini projector should feature extra options such as audio output and VGA ports.
While all gadgets mentioned in our pocket mini projector reviews earned their rankings due to their performance and excellent image quality, the Optoma ML750St wrestles them all. With a stellar image quality and short throw distance, this high-definition projector will work in any environment.