Epson BrightLink 595Wi Projector Review

Epson 595Wi-Pic1-1EPSON BRIGHTLINK 595WI Projector Intro:  The Epson Brightlink 595Wi is an ultra short throw, interactive projector, sporting 3300 lumens.  It targets the education projector market, suitable for both K-12 and higher education applications.  Features include WXGA resolution (i.e., 1280 x 800 pixels), Wired and Wireless (with optional WiFi dongle) networking,  advanced user interactive inputs using dual pens plus finger touch, and classroom filling sound.  The Brightlink 595Wi is the most advanced of three new Epson interactive projectors in this series.  The Brightlink 575Wi projector is the entry interactive model with 2700 lumens, while the mid-level Brightlink 585Wi is very similar to the W595Wi, but lacks the finger touch user input interactive capability of the 595Wi.

Art reviewed the BrightLink 585Wi in May 2014 (HERE) and because that model is in most aspects very similar the 595Wi, where appropriate I have used text from that earlier review for this review of the 595Wi.   Epson also offers a non-interactive model in the BrightLink 5xx series, the $1499 Brightlink 585W (no “i”), for those not interested in full interactivity. This Brightlink series of projectors from Epson may primarily focus on schools, (including large educational discounts), but are also widely sold for business use as well.

It brings ultra short throw and interactivity to conference rooms, training rooms, and at trade shows.   The Brightlink Pro 1410Wi projector (review HERE) offers interactive capabilities along with video conferencing capabilities, and targets the executive boardroom while costing $100 more than the 595Wi.

BrightLink 595Wi - Overview

Based on Art’s earlier review of the similar BrightLink 585Wi, I expected Epson’s BrightLink 595Wi, to be a great performer and it didn’t disappoint.  This top-of-the line classroom projector offers similar performance as the 585Wi but adds even more interactive capabilities.  Sharpness, often a challenge with ultra short throw projectors, is not an issue for the 595Wi as it offers excellent focus, rivaling traditional throw distance projectors.

While this model is marketed as a education/classroom model, in reality, the Brightlink 595Wi is just as at home in a corporate boardroom, conference room or training room.  It’s also very suitable for use at trade shows and other events where interactivity is designed, and fast, smooth operation demanded.

Networking features are advanced.  Network administrators should find all the features they are looking for.  The 595Wi has both wired – LAN networking, and Wireless.  Wireless is accomplished by simply inserting an optional wireless dongle into its slot, and, of course configuring.

Of course if your purpose is to place one of these (or its siblings) in a school classroom, then you’ll appreciate that Epson offers an aggressive education program.

The Epson Brighter Futures education program includes discounts from the $2399 MSRP, an extra year of warranty, and an extra year of their support programs. Finally, schools get to purchase Epson’s long life replacement lamps for less than $100, that’s about half to 1/3 of what most lamps sell for these days.

This model is intended to be wall-mounted in an inverted orientation directly above a wall mounted whiteboard or, alternatively, mounted vertically projecting downward onto a tabletop.  In fact the finger touch interactive feature cannot be setup nor used when this projector is sitting on a table.  Note that the other BrightLink models that lack the finger touch feature can be table mounted.   Being a classroom projector I would expect it to normally be mounted to a wall, using the supplied mount, just few inches above the vertical projection surface (typically a wall mounted whiteboard).  As an added bonus, it can be used to project onto a horizontal ‘screen’ including using a table top as the display surface.  This creates an interactive table.  That may work well in a small classroom, an engineering station, or a museum display.  The interactivity is the key reason for that type of setup and the 595Wi with both interactive pens and multi-finger touch sensing enables really advanced interactive capabilities.

Epson offers multiple mounting options and the photo at the top of this page shows the 595Wi with the included wall mount.

The Epson comes with two interactive pens and a pen case along with a “finger touch module”, that enables the simultaneous touch locations of up to 6 fingers to be detected.

Remember, if you plan to use this projector interactively, that a traditional screen surface really doesn’t work with the supplied interactive pens.  A whiteboard or a “hybrid” combination of screen and whiteboard work better.  The primary reason are the pens.  They are pressure sensitive, so pressing against a traditional screen surface is just going to push that surface in an inch or so, before the pen’s contacts click.  In other words, you’ll end up stretching the screen surface, not a good thing.

 

Epson BrightLink 595Wi - Highlights

  • Very bright projector – 3300 white, and 3300 color lumens
  • Impressive interactivity capabilities:  tools, pens, multi-finger touch sensor, support from 3rd party interactive software programs, etc.
  • Wired and Wireless (optional WiFi dongle required) networking, including Crestron RoomView support
  • Sharp image with good focus uniformity, especially for a ultra short throw projector
  • Ultra short throw design doesn’t “blind” the presenter/teacher/student
  • Extensive selection of inputs and connectors
  • Multiple color modes, most with very good to excellent color
  • Speaker system capable of handling small and medium sized classrooms
  • Excellent warranty and support programs
  • Additional breaks (on price, warranty) for educational institutions

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