Looking to ditch that
outdated SVGA projector that you’ve been using for the past six years? Here are
four new, super-bright and long-lasting 3lcd widescreen projectors to consider.
Features & Setup
Traditionally, a strong suit of Epson’s multimedia
projectors is a great mix of performance, features, and usability - the
EB-1945W is no exception. Setting up this 4,200-lumen projector is easy: Both
horizontal and vertical keystone correction happens automatically, and you can
even tackle any corner that doesn’t align properly in an independent manner.
From DisplayPort and HDMI, to D-Sub and composite connectors, it plays nice
with both analog and modern digital output devices. If you happened to misplace
that VGA cable, a USB cable is all you need to continue the presentation.
And when you’re offsite, you can take advantage of the
built-in USB reader to project images sans PC. Equipped with both wired and
wireless connectivity, the Epson EB-1945W is also a strong candidate if you
want to manage a fleet of them remotely. Scheduling power on/off timings,
checking the status, and receiving maintenance alerts are all possible. If
you’ve an Android or iOS device, remember to install the free Epson iProjection
app. It provides a stress-free way to wirelessly project stuff on your device
on the screen. It also turns your device into a touch remote control.
The EB-1945W may have been in the market for more than a
year now, but it’s no less capable than some of its few months-old rivals. If
you’ve a bright room, Dynamic mode is the way to go, as it’s the mode that’s
capable of pushing that claimed 4,200 lumens of brightness. Color brightness is
also strong for this 3LCD projector, good news for presentations that need text
and images to be onscreen at the same time. The 1.6x manual zoom lens helps in
placement flexibility, and we could easily achieve a 100-inch, 16:10 image at a
projector-to-screen distance of 3 meters.
EPSON EB-1945W connector
For movies, while the EB-1945W isn’t a full HD projector,
its Faroudja DCDi Cinema chipset did bring about very pleasing results when we
threw the Blu-ray version of Iron Man 3 at it. But to tame the brightness and
give the picture a more natural look, we had to switch to the Theater color
mode. The 10W speaker fared okay with music and dialog, but creaked to an audio
mess when there was too much going on. Lastly, if you’re bothered by that 37dB
hum, consider switching to Eco mode, which drops the noise level to 29dB.
Features & Setup
You can think of NEC’s new P series as the more professional
version of the company’s well-established M series portable projectors. All the
good things about the M series are found here: Easy setup, generous 1.7x zoom
lens, an Eco mode that prolongs the lamp life up to 6,000 hours, a plethora of
I/O options (including two HDMI inputs) on the clearly labeled back panel, a
USB reader for PC-less presentations, and networking support (both Ethernet and
Wi-Fi). There are also plenty of Windows-based tools to aid the user get the
most out of it, including an on-screen remote control, a geometric correction
tool that does advanced image distortion correction, and the ability to
transmit images and sound over the network or USB cable. iOS users also get to
enjoy the free Wireless Image Utility app, which enables wireless projection of
both photos and documents from Apple’s mobile devices, and which incorporates
useful annotation and pointer features. But what really sets this beamer apart
from the others are its high 4,500-lumen brightness and vertical lens shift
function (0 to +0.6V), which make the P451W a tempting entry-level installation
projector if you’re looking to outfit a large venue.
The P451W started up and detected the video source quickly,
and was able to ramp up to set brightness in less than a minute in our tests.
Its maximum light output (4,500 lumens) is the highest of the bunch, but take
note that this is only achievable in High-Bright mode.
But even at the most power-saving Eco mode, it still pushes
a very decent 2,300 lumens, which is plenty for a small room. Needless to say,
images are very bright at High-Bright mode, even at the widest end of the lens.
For data, we noted razor-sharp text and good color saturation; and for movies,
we are impressed by the excellent contrast and preservation of shadow details.
While performance is pretty much spot-on out of the box for us, tweakers will
be happy to know that the P451W offers plenty of controls, such as gamma
correction, color temperature (six options going from 5,000 to 10,500K), and
white balance settings, to get the picture just right. The built-in 16W
monaural speaker does go louder than the 10W ones its rivals come with, but
it’s still only about good enough for adding a soundtrack to a presentation
than anything else.