3M MPro150 - Performance
9/23/2010 - Anthony Arrigo
3M MPro150 Brightness
If you have been researching Pico projectors and also have any history with standard projectors in the last few years you might be asking yourself whats the point of a Pico when you consider projectors just a few hundred dollars more have almost 20 times the lumens and their physical size is not really all that much of a deal killer. Well, Picos have one advantage and that is the fact their really really small, but more importantly their lamp will far outlive your needs for the projector.
The manufacturer stated Brightness of the MPro150 is 15 lumens. Our readings in the lab produced 9 lumens. Measurements of the lumens were done with the lights completely off, or at least very little ambient light, the MPro150 produces an aceptable image. However, I can't say it produces a better image than Optoma's LED equivalent.
Reading text on the screen was not bad, but any extended viewing would be very difficult and your small audience would eventually tire. The main use for the projector I have to say would be to use it as a quick, painless method of viewing some pictures from your SmartPhone or laptop. Another use that I think best suits this projector is to use it when traveling. It really is more of a show and tell device. On a camping trip I can see it being kind of nice for an outdoor movie.
At a native resolution of (640x480) a truly competitive sharp image is not going to be possible. Picos generally do not have very sharp images because of the low resolution, but the MPro150 does an ok job of reproducing text. I would say larger text of the size 14pt and above is going to be acceptable. I would not recommend a presenter try and convey important ideas in an Excel spreadsheet with standard size text. In fact I could not recommend the MPro150 as a presentation device for viewing a lot of different types of business documents.
The 3M MPro150 was designed to read many of todays common office documents straight from its internal memory, but the quality is lacking and one should keep in mind again that a Pico should be either used for fun, like when projecting a quick movie, or when you need to share a business document for a few minutes. Any long presentations where it is critical your audience see detail, and not experience a lot of strain should really be done by a standard portable projector producing at least 1000+ lumens. Which, is not hard to find since next to no one produces your typical business projector with less than a 1000 lumens.
There is almost little to no light leakage. Like other pico projectors, the buttons only light up for a few seconds while navigating around the projectors features and very little light leaks through other open areas of the projector.
Because of the light technology being used, the projector produces no sound.