Most often, we watch videos on a TV, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. Everyone has their own use case and favorite devices. For those who want a home or work, but at the same time a mobile cinema for relatively little money, there is a small ViewSonic M1+ projector.
What’s inside the box?
The projector comes complete with a felt cover, which is very useful given the portable nature of the device. Moreover, the cover slightly increases the size. It protects the projector and has little or no effect on the weight or volume of the luggage.
Also in the box is the control panel. It is made of matte plastic, the buttons work clearly, but rather tightly. Unfortunately, there is no backlight, so you have to control it blindly in the dark. The accessory kit also includes a Type-C to Type-C cable and charger. The power supply is large, but you can use something from your own arsenal of chargers – I’ll talk about this further in the text.
Is the design impressive?
The projector is renowned – its appearance and thoughtful design were appreciated by the jury of the competition and presented with a design award. As for me, the prize is certainly deserved because the mobile device turned out to be minimalistic, on the other hand, convenient to use. And this is not the case in all cases when it comes to effective design.
On the side, there is a wheel for manual focus correction.
The whole idea is a leg that rotates 360 degrees around an axis. Thanks to the wide stance, the projector stands firmly on the surface and, if necessary, folds down with one movement of the hand. This will automatically turn the projector on and off. Simple, reliable, and elegant. ViewSonic M1 + can shine straight up or to the side. You set a convenient angle and projection point yourself.
All the numerous connectors are hidden under the hinged cover. Just pull on the fabric tab, and it will open. Here’s what you’ll find: microSD slot, charger port, USB Type-C, HDMI, 3.5mm headphone jack, and USB Type-A.
You can monitor the charge level of the projector by the indicator light: as the battery is discharged, five diodes go out in turn.
A fully charged projector lasted 2.5 hours of normal operation. You can use the economy mode. Then it will last almost 5.5 hours.
The power supply turned out to be massive, which means that this moment must be considered if you go on a trip and decide to take the projector with you. But you can do without a block if you have a powerful enough charger with USB Type-C. The ViewSonic M1 + is charged via Type-C with a minimum 45W PSU with Power Delivery support. I tried several of my chargers paired with the projector. The projector worked fine with them.
When I turned on the ViewSonic M1 + and connected it to Wi-Fi, the projector found fresh firmware and offered to install an update. Everything loads quickly. It doesn’t take very long to install either. The most difficult thing in this situation is entering the Wi-Fi password by selecting characters with the remote control. The process is slow and requires patience.
The projector runs Android, the version is quite old, but it is enough to work – there is simply nothing to slow down. There is a simple application store where you can find Spotify, and if you wish, APK files can be installed from a memory card. HD VideoBox makes life more interesting: a pirate service opens up access to a huge database of films, cartoons, and TV series.
It remains only to choose the method of connecting the video source. For me, the most convenient format was streaming from an iPhone via AirPlay. The only requirement is that the devices must be on the same network.
In addition to iOS, the projector also supports Android, and for control, you can install an application on your phone – you get a convenient replacement for the remote control.
The projector also has a USB port, HDMI, USB Type-C, and microSD – you can connect almost anything, as long as there is a suitable cable. Conveniently, you can connect wired headphones directly to the projector to watch the video. For complete happiness, perhaps the optical output is not enough. But if you want, you can connect a speaker via Bluetooth and output sound to it.
The projector has a small amount of its own memory, only 12 GB, but this is better than nothing at all. You can upload several films or a season of a series in medium quality.
The built-in speakers are loud, the headroom is good – I didn’t think the projector was so sonorous. Considering the device’s format, the stereo speakers tuned with the help of Harman Kardon specialists play decently. Perceptible bass, good mids, and highs – you can’t get enough of the audio.
In this case, an LED lamp with a resource of 30,000 hours is used. Roughly speaking, there are three years of continuous operation when the projector shines around the clock. I think that, in fact, no one will use it in continuous mode, and in fact, the device will last much longer.
Vertical correction works well: the projector automatically adjusts the picture to the wall based on the tilt angle.
The projector has a resolution of 854 × 480, and you can get the equivalent of a 100-inch screen if you move the projector 2.5 meters away. The image quality is such that it can be forgiven for a mobile device: the grain is noticeable, the clarity is not the highest, but still, the ViewSonic M1 + is a small projector, so it turned out to be a compromise solution.
The brightness margin is not enough for watching a movie indoors during the day. Better to watch late in the evening or at night, or look for a viewing area where there are no windows and light does not break through the blackout curtains.
The ViewSonic M1 + has a security feature that automatically shuts down the projector if an obstacle occurs directly in front of it. I think that this primarily concerns curious children who, while watching a cartoon, may be interested in where the magic light comes from and will try to closely see the source of the image.
I also want to mention the noticeable noise during the projector’s operation when you sit right next to it. If possible, it is better to move it aside at least half a meter – then the presence of the projector will not be noticeable.
Considering that the projector itself is still a specific thing, its price of about $289.99 is not surprising. The device can be a useful work tool for professionals who need a mobile projector on business trips for frequent presentations.
If you watched filmstrips in the evenings as a child, the projector would revive forgotten emotions. Today’s children, raised with tablets and smartphones, find it difficult to understand how their parents were having fun thirty years ago. But the ViewSonic M1 + ‘s small projector can be that connecting link, reviving the romance of family watching movies or cartoons in the evenings.
ViewSonic M1+ Portable Projector: Complete Specifications
- Light: LED, 300 lumens, up to 30,000 hours of operation;
- Optical zoom: fixed, throw ratio 1.2: 1;
- Size: 24-100 ″ at a distance of 0.64 to 2.66 m;
- Support: 480i, 480p, 576i, 576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p;
- Resolution: 854 × 480;
- Connectors: HDMI 1.4, microSD, USB Type-C, USB Type-A, 3.5 mm;
- Communication: Wi-Fi 802.11ac, Bluetooth 5.0;
- Weight: 0.75kg;
- Dimensions: 151 x 126 x 40 mm.