Ask Proxima E1655U LCD Projector Review

ASK PROXIMA E1655U PROJECTOR – SPECIAL FEATURES:  Interchangeable Lenses, Power Lens Controls (zoom, focus, shift), Dual Cooling system, Closed Captioning

Interchangeable Lenses

For the ultimate customizability of installation, Ask Proxima offers a choice of five bayonet-style lenses to choose from, depending on your installation needs.  The standard lens (which comes with the projector and was used for this review) has a throw ratio that ranges from 1.3 to 2.1 (this means the projector can be placed at a distance from the screen that equals 1.3 to 2.1 times the screen width).

By contrast, the ultra-long zoom lens has a throw ratio ranging from 4.6 to 7.2 and the long zoom lens has a throw ratio of 2.8 to 4.6.  There is a standard zoom lens that fits in between the standard lens and the long zoom lens, with a throw ratio of 1.7 to 2.8.  There are also two short throw lenses, a short zoom lens with a throw ratio of 1.3 to 1.7 and a wide lens (fixed at 0.8 throw ratio) for rear projection applications.

ASK Proxima fixed install projector E1655U-A

ASK Proxima fixed install projector E1655U-A

What does this all mean?  It means that by choosing the appropriate lens, the projector can display a 80” wide image at distances ranging from as little as 4.27′ (51.2″) with the fixed lens or as far as 38.38’ (460.6”).

Street prices on these lenses range from $2000 to $3000, with the ultra-long throw zoom being the most expensive.

That seems to be in line with most other manufacturers – price wise, that is.

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Power Focus, Lens Shift and Zoom

While a number of projectors in this market have lens shift and zoom, the E1655U adds remote focusing ability and all three adjustments are motorized and can be controlled from the remote.  Being able to focus the lens remotely can be a boon for installations where the projector is mounted in a location that is not easily accessible.

It’s also very handy for rental and staging applications, or any other where the projector is occasionally moved around.   It’s a lot easier to get a nice sharp focus, or fit the screen perfectly, when you can be close to the screen.  With a long throw lens, you better have great vision, or binoculars to get a sharp focus, from typically 40 or more feet back, or perhaps a second person to stand there by the screen and tell you when it’s perfectly focused.

All considered power zoom, lens shift and focus is always a plus.   Oh, perhaps having motorized brings some additional risk to reliability, but even in a rental situation, you just won’t be using those motors but rarely.

Dual-Path Cooling

In addition to the main cooling path from one side of the projector to the other, Ask Proxima also employs a secondary cooling path.  This path from the front of the projector, through the lamp compartment and to the rear corner, hot air exhaust improves overall air flow allowing the projector to run cooler.  This helps to prolong projector life, and also lamp life.  Cooler is better.

Closed Captioning

The Ask Proxima E1655U provides four channels of closed captioning (CC1-4) which typically allows for both English text captioning and a secondary language captioning (varies depending on the source).  This is very useful for presentations where the presenter might be dealing with audiences that are hearing-impaired or are comprised of a number of people for which the audio is not in their primary language.

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