Projector Reviews

Acer S1386WHN Short Throw Projector Review – Hardware 1

Acer S1386WHN Short-Throw Conference Room Projector Review – Hardware 1: Overview, Inputs and Connectors, Lens

Overview

The Acer S1386WHN is a short throw projector intended for the business and education market. Measurements are not available for this projector on any published specifications pages or documents, so using my handy-dandy tape measure, I came up with 12.3 inches wide, by 10.0 inches deep, and 4.3 inches high. It weighs in at just 6.83 lbs.

This short throw projector supports front and rear projection, both table-top and ceiling mounted. We use the table-top, front projection method when reviewing projectors, thus the descriptions appearing here will be as if standing in front of the projector while it is sitting on a table.

The front of the projector features a large, bulbous lens that protrudes from the front of the projector, as well as the IR sensor for the remote control, and part of the hot (and I mean HOT) air exhaust on the far left. The left side of the projector continues the hot air exhaust on the front corner, and an audio channel for the single 16.0 W speaker.

The rear of the projector features a healthy amount of inputs and connectors, which we will detail in the next section. The right side of the S1386WHN is almost entirely open as the cool, room air intake. The top of the projector features a large door for accessing the lamp for ease of replacement, as well as the control panel, indicator lights, and lens focus control wheel.

Inputs and Connectors

Acer S1386WHN Conference Room Projector
The Acer S1386WHN offers a good compliment of inputs suitable for education and business purposes.

The Acer S1386WHN has some pretty good connectivity options that are well suited for business and education applications. Inputs are arranged in columns of sorts, so we’ll keep it simple and describe column by column, running left to right. Starting at the top of the left-most column, we have HDMI 1, and under that we have two USB-A ports; USB-A 1 is marked specifically for the optional wireless dongle, and USB-A 2 for DC 5V Out. Beneath that, we find the AC In power cord connection. The next column consists of only HDMI 2/MHL allowing connectivity with MHL devices.

The next column consists of a yellow composite video input, and a security lock port. The next column to the right contains VGA IN 1 for connection to a PC, and an RS232 port for old-school command and control. The next column is simple; VGA IN 2 and VGA OUT.  Next, we have a simple RJ-45 Network port. The final column consists of an Audio In and an Audio Out 3.5mm MiniJack.

The Lens

Acer S1386WHN Conference Room Projector
The large lens and focus control of the Acer S1386WHN short-throw projector.

The Acer S1386WHN is a short throw projector with a fixed focal length, and a throw ratio of just 0.58:1. The lens is large and bulbous, and protrudes from the front of the projector, similar to the way a fish eye might protrude out of the side of a fish’s head; that’s not a negative comment, just an observation.

At just 38 inches from the screen, it projects an image that measures 87 inches diagonally. Acer puts the minimum image size as 36 inches diagonally and maximum image size for this projector at 300 inches diagonally, with a throw-distance between 1.3 ft and 11.0 ft. The focus wheel is located above the lens on the top of the projector.

There is a translucent lens cover, or Lens Shield, tethered to the front of the projector to keep dust off the large lens surface when not in use, and to prevent damage.

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