If you have ever worked at a job where you had to take a projector with you on the road to give presentations you know how big a hassle it can be taking the often heavy devices with you. If you have to travel a long way by air, the hassle is even worse. A company called AAXA Technologies has a new projector called the P1 Pico Projector that may make carrying that full-size projector a thing of the past and let mobile multimedia fans watch on a much larger screen than their portable device offers. The real question is can a tiny projector work in the real world. Read on to find out if the P1 Pico Projector can really replace a full-size projector.
Specifications and Features
The P1 Pico Projector is a tiny little projector measuring in at only 105 x 58 x 26mm and weighing 180g. Despite its small size, the projector offers a native resolution of 640 x 480 and can project an image 7 to 50-inches in size. Two of the most important specifications for a projector are contrast and brightness. The P1 Pico Projector has a contrast ratio of 1000:1 and a brightness of only 12 ANSI lumens.
The lamp inside the projector is a single chip white LED good for up to 30,000 hours. An onboard speaker provides sound with 0.5W and a speaker/headphone jack is integrated. A media player is built-in supporting MP4/MP3/WMA/OGG/WAV/AVI/WMV/SMV/ BMP/JPG/GIF/TXT formats. Connectivity options include USB, composite, and optional iPod cable.
The tiny projector is about 2.5 times as thick as my iPhone and about the same length making it very portable. Inside the little projector is a rechargeable battery that lets you use it on the go. If you are the type that likes to watch video from your iPod or iPhone AAXA sells an accessory cable that allows the projector to connect to the iPhone or iPod easily.
In my testing, I used the cable to project video from my iPhone. Connecting the projector was easy to do and required no configuration on my iPhone. Simply connect the cable to the P1 Pico Projector, plug it into the iPhone and play a video, everything else is automatic.
One look at the specifications of the P1 Pico Projector and I wondered if the image quality would be workable in the least. After spending a few days playing with the projector I can say the thing works, but has a very specific set of requirements if you use it. Turn the thing on in a room even moderately bright and you can pretty much count on seeing nothing but blurry images because the lamp has such low brightness.
Use the P1 Pico Projector in a dark room with no windows and the picture quality is impressive. In a dark room, the video playback is fluid and no smearing or other issues can be seen on the video playback. However, if you find yourself trying to use the P1 Pico Projector in a dark room with nothing more than light from closed blinds filtering in image quality suffers quickly.
Aside from the issue with image quality in brighter environments, the other big issue I had was the internal sound system. The puny 0.5W speaker is basically unusable. When playing any video, even with the speaker at full volume, the sound is so muted you can barely make out what is being said. The headphone jack worked well, though it gave me the opposite problem. With headphones plugged in many of the videos were too loud and there appears to be no way to control the volume. Turning the volume down on the iPhone had no effect nor did the volume control on the projector itself.
If you plan to use the P1 Pico Projector to give a presentation to multiple people, count on bringing a set of speakers with you. That really takes away much of the portability and convenience of the projector though.
- Small dimensions
- Easy to use
- Good image quality in dark rooms
- Poor onboard sound system
- Poor image quality in even dimly lit rooms
The P1 Pico Projector is very portable which will make it attractive to some users. The poor performance in anything other than nearly complete darkness will be a deal killer for many business users. The P1 Pico Projector isn’t ready to replace a full-size projector in most instances.TAGS: AAXA Technologies, Pico Projector