Projector Reviews

AAXA M6 Pocket Projector Review – Picture and Sound Quality

AAXA M6 Pocket Projector Review – Picture and Sound Quality: Out-of-the-Box Color, Video Image Quality, Text and Presentation Quality, Audio Quality

Out-of-the-Box Color

The out-of-the-box color on the M6 is vibrant with a lot of pop. This projector does things a bit differently in terms of color modes, which took some getting used to. The M6 uses both Picture Modes and Color Modes – four of each. The four Picture Modes are Standard, Movie, User and Presentation, and affect contrast, brightness, color, sharpness, and tint. Each Picture Mode has a Color Mode assigned to it, and they are: Cool, Medium, User, and Warm. The values for RGB change between each.

In the slider above, we have three of the four Picture Modes. I did not take a photo of User Mode, as it is completely customizable to your liking. When in User Mode, you can select one of the presets for your Color Mode, or you can calibrate the color using the User option within the Color Modes menu.

From the images, you can see the modes aren’t that different in terms of color. There are slight variances in saturation of some colors – from Movie to Presentation, I could see that greens and magentas became a tad brighter than they were in the Movie or Standard Modes. But guys, I really had to strain to see that. They all look pretty much the same. AAXA may as well have programmed in one mode.

Since both the Standard and Movie Picture Modes use the Cool Color Mode, there is no visible difference in color between the two. Presentation Picture Mode uses the Medium Color Mode, which is why there is any difference in color at all, though barely detectable as I’ve said.

Video Image Quality

I started taking photos in the Movie Picture Mode, but once I realized it was a touch abrasive with the pinks on skin tones and lips, I decided to play with the User Picture and Color Modes. I didn’t play long, so I’m confident that one could get more accurate color out of the M6 than I did. All photos of The Hunger Games were taken in Movie Picture Mode, as well the photo from streaming The Blacklist on Netflix and those taken of our Smarter Home Automation videos. All others were taken in User Mode after I “calibrated” it.

In some scenes, the M6 does really well on skin tones, and not so good in others. It does have a lot to do with the color correction in the scene, as sometimes editors will color correct to have a magenta hue, blue, or another color that makes the image more attractive. Since Color Modes do the same thing – color correcting, that is – if the mode adds more of the color that was in the original color correction, there will be “too much” of that color.

That’s exactly what happened when viewing The Hunger Games. The fourth photo in the slider is of the Tribute Parade scene in The Hunger Games. The scene has strong reds and magentas by itself, then add the Cool Color Mode to that – bleck. So pink! This is easily adjustable when switching to User Modes for both Picture and Color, so you’re not stuck with pinky pink Katniss and Peeta. Thank goodness for that.

The vibrancy of the image looks particularly good when viewing animated films. These movies tend to have vibrant colors anyway, and with the AAXA M6, those colors really pop. I put on Zootopia to entertain my cats while I was testing the battery life (they watch it they’ll watch the whole thing), and it looked phenomenal.

AAXA M6 Calibration Settings
These are the settings I used in the rest of the photos. I am confident that better color can be achieved if you spend some time playing with these settings, but the adjustments I made did improve color quite a bit.

The M6 can be super contrasty on videos, as you can see from the final images in the slider. Again, you can tweak the settings to look much better than what we’re seeing here. It’ll just take some trial and error for you to get the best color out of it. Though, for most, the out-of-the-box color will be satisfactory, even if it isn’t true-to-color.

Text and Presentation Quality

he M6 produces a surprisingly sharp image. I was skeptical about the M6’s abilities because of the size – it looks like a toy compared to the projectors I have been reviewing all year. When I powered it on, the text on the menus was pixelated and caused me to make a snap judgment about the quality of this projector. Once I got it hooked up to my PlayStation 4, I saw that the text was, in fact, incredibly sharp.

The first image in the slider shows various text sizes and colors – depending on the size of the screen, even the smallest text should be readable. Text on presentations and websites look really sharp and clear, and it even looks great in films. The last four photos in the slider were taken from Ender’s Game and Casino Royale, and demonstrate the crispness of text in visual effects. I’ve seen some projectors that don’t do as well on text, and those cost a lot more. I was pleased with the sharpness of the M6.

Audio Quality

The AAXA M6 comes equipped with two 2-watt speakers. They’re not positioned for proper stereo, one being in the back and one on the side, but it still produces some pretty decent sound. The speakers will be loud enough for a small audience, but as there is an Audio Out jack, you can connect speakers should you have more people to present to or that are watching videos/movies from the projector.

When powering this unit on, there was a pop from the speaker every time. It’s freaky – sounds like the projector is exploding. Of course, not as loud, and AAXA assures us it’s not exploding. They say the pop is nothing to be concerned about. I’ve had the same thing happen when turning on wired speakers that are connected to a source – it’s just something that happens sometimes, and I don’t know the technical cause for it. The pop is startling and therefore annoying, but it doesn’t affect performance.

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