Epson Powerlite S5 Portable LCD Projector Review
Epson Powerlite S5 Menus
Epson has pretty much been using the same Menu layout for 5 years or so. I believe that translates into something like “if it ain’t broke, don’ fix it.” Overall, I have found Epson’s layout to be logical, and easy to read and understand.
The first main menu, is the Image menu, and, as the name implies, controls most things that relate to image quality. First is the Color mode (there’s an image immediately below, showing the numerous color modes), followed by the usual suspects – Brightness, Contrast, Color Saturation, Tint (certain types of sources only), Sharpness Color Temperature and finally Color Adjustment (individual colors).
As it turns out, Game, I believe is the brightest mode, with Presentation being not quite as bright, but better color balance, And there’s Sports mode, another bright mode, but way heavy on green, to cut through more ambient light. The sRGB mode is designed for color matching a system that’s been around for quite some time, but rarely used. The idea of sRGB has been that if all displays are color matched, then if you look at the color of a fabric on your laptop’s display, or a projector, it would look exactly the same as the original fabric. This makes sRGB perfect for online shopping where color accuracy is important.
The next major menu is the Signal menu, not shown here. This menu is pretty basic, which lets you set aspect ratio, and adjust the image if it doesn’t correctly lock in on a computer input.
The Settings menu is next. It offers control of keystone correction, and the digital zoom.
There is a security feature, and the Brightness (lamp hi or low) control, and the volume control. All very straightforward.
Next comes the Extended Menu, shownhere. This menu allows you to control “everything else”, such as putting in a User logo (your company or school name) for when the projector has no source or is powering up. Actual projector orientation is controlled here as well (ceiling, table, front, rear).
Link 21L is Epson’s provided software for command and control of the projector from a computer. To use this feature, you must install the software on your computer. And, of course, you can select menu language.
The Info and Reset menus are not shown here, but are rather self explanatory. Info will tell you what your source is, how many hours on the lamp, and so on. Reset allows you to do a master reset of the projector, or to reset lamp hours when you replace the Epson lamp.
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Epson Powerlite S5 Remote Control
I’m not happy here. Epson has replaced a perfectly good remote control with a smaller one, and I don’t think it was such a great move. The new smaller remote retains most of the features as the older one (which is still used on a number of more expensive Epson projectors), but is definitely more cramped, and it’s a lot harder to find the buttons you want.
The remote is only about three inches from top to bottom, so depending on your display, the image here, may actually be larger than the real life remote.
From the top left, there is the usual power button (red) with press once for on, twice for off. In the middle is the Source Search button for choosing your source, and on the right, the Help button. I’ve already mentioned Epson’s interactive help, definitely a nice touch.
The next three rows consist of Menu in the top left, and Esc (top right) with the four arrow keys and an Enter/Auto button in the center of the arrow keys. The left and right arrow keys function as volume up and down, when you aren’t in the menu system.
To the left of the down arrow key is the Color Mode button, and the Aspect ratio button is opposite it, on the right.
The bottom two rows have on the left, Page Up and Down for interacting with a computer, and programs like Powerpoint (assuming you are running the USB cable between computer and projector). The E-zoom – the digital zoom feature + and – are in the center, and a Freeze image button, and A/V Mute are on the right side.
That about covers it, except to say that there is a numeric pad (you can see the small white numbers in black boxes around the keys) integrated into the center keys to be used with the security system, for passwords.
What’s notably missing on the S5 remote control is the pointer system found on almost all Epson business projectors. This pointer system allowed the presenter to place a pointer (several graphics to choose from) icon on the screen and move it around, to accomplish the same effect as using a laser pointer to highlight information.
It’s a very small remote, the buttons are even smaller, and it lacks the disc pad which I really liked on other Epson remotes. I realize this is an entry level projector, but, most I think would be happy paying about three bucks more, for the old remote. On the bright side, the range of the remote is very good, working effortlessly at 20+ feet, which is more than a lot of other remotes can claim.
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