3M MPro110 - Image Quality
7/11/2009 - Art Feierman
3M MPro110 Projector - Picture Quality
Ok, this definitely isn't a home theater projector, and for that matter, it's no match for any "normal" sized business projector. Overall, the image tends to appear to have too much contrast. The gamma is also high, meaning that mid-brightness parts of the projected image tend to be a bit dark.
On the other hand, (I was going to say "on the bright side", but I have trouble using the term "bright" when describing these pico LED projectors), they really aren't as bad as it must sometimes sound in this review. The MPro110 projector is a little weaker in terms of picture quality on video type sources, than handing a computer VGA source. In reality, this 3M projector, as long as you keep the image small, actually works fairly well when I feed it assorted content off of my laptop.
As I said above, the MPro110 really can function as a tiny business projector. I think it will work best with image sizes limited to 12 to 24 inches diagonally, but if the room is fully dark, it can go a bit brighter.
Consider this pie chart image first. The projected image size is 27 inches wide (36 inch diagonal).
To give you an idea of the real brightness of the image here are two additional images. The first one looks at the room lighting, and you can see part of the projected image on the far right. The second one shows the pie chart again, but also the pie chart image on my laptop.
It's obvious that the laptop screen is significantly brighter, but this photo also shows us the color differences, and allows us to discuss the color performance.
The projected reds are much darker than they should be. Yellows aren't great either. In this regard, the MPro110 is performing like many larger DLP projectors, although those DLP projectors tend to be worse on yellows, with more green to them. The other colors (on the 3M) are generally also darker and higher contrast, but the blues and greens are closer to the laptop's blues and greens, than the reds are.
All that considered, for many who want an MPro110 for occaisional presenting, will figure the "cool" of using this tiny projector, is a helpful tradeoff against the color, brightness, and resolution aspects of the image.
Bottom line for presentations. It really can project a much larger than laptop size image with acceptable brightness, and decent color. The VGA (640x480) resolution is lower than anyone uses on their computers these days, but as long as you avoid really small type, it works. This image image below (also photgraphed at 36 inch diagonal - lights out), is from an Powerpoint presentation someone sent me. See, the MPro110 really does present:
3M MPro110 Black Levels & Shadow Detail
For those wanting to view photos on the MPro110, this led projector will do a reasonable job for those who are not critical. Blacks aren't a match for home theater projectors, but definitely usable. Shadow detail is a different story. The overall dark look, high gamma and lots of contrast have a lot of shadow detail dissappearing. On the bright side, however you aren't likely to be looking for dark shadow details in the darker parts of a photo.
The image below (intentionally a bit overexposed), from Lord of the Rings, is one I use in all reviews to look at shadow detail. In this case, you see the whole image, and it serves more of a test for looking at dark images with low lights on.
3M MPro110 - Overall Color & Picture Quality
The 3M MPro110 behaves like the other pico projectors I've been working with. In short, while the projector does put up a decent image, it doesn't stand up to any critical viewing. Generally, the image is dark, colors are oversaturated and not particularly accurate, with a definite shift toward blue. Still, my 17 year old daughter thinks its fun to view the pictures from her digital camera and those on her laptop, with the 3M projector.
3M MPro110 Projector: Performance, HDTV, TV and Sports
I didn't view the MPro110 with any TV content. Expect however the results to be very similar to the the images discussed above. And, one more time, this 3M projector has no speaker, so before you watch the "tube", you'll have to figure out how to handle your sound.