The Ask Proxima E1655U is an excellent performer that produces a sharp, bright image with very good color fidelity. With easy setup via its power zoom, focus and lens shift, as well as its variety of available lenses, it is easily integrated into any installation. Both the Normal and Cinema modes are well suited to presentations that require accurate color. Its black levels will not remind anyone of a home theater projector, but then no home theater projector could handle the amount of ambient light the E1655U can, while still providing a pleasing image.
While there is no wireless network capability, that’s probably less of a concern for a projector that’s not intended for portability. Similarly, the lack of network presentation capability is a negative. While the 1655U's network control ability is fine for most installations, a large corporation looking to equip a number of rooms with projectors in this class are likely to lean more towards projectors that offer more advanced networking, such as being Crestron compatible. That, however isn't critical to most installations, including Houses of Worship, entertainment venues (restaurants, bars, clubs, small concert venues), and a host of stand alone type of installations, as well as rental and staging.
Good as it is, the E1655U suffers in comparison with some of the competition in this price range, which offer similar performance, but with more features at a lower price. For example, the Epson G6550WU has the same brightness, resolution and interchangeable lenses, but also includes USB presentation ability, edge blending for multiple projector use and a DICOM simulation mode, all for $1000 less (MSRP) than the E1655U. With the exception of Ask Proxima's excellent lamp warranty, the warranty and service plans are similar as well
That being said, if additional features are not important, you could still spend more and do a lot worse than the E1655U. It has a very good set of features and solid performance, with no weaknesses. Feature set is solid, with a good amount of lens shift. To top it off, this projector actually measured more lumens than claimed, a rarity in our reviews. If you’re in the market for a large venue projector that can handle a fair amount of ambient light while still providing a clear presentation, the Ask Proxima E1655U certainly deserves your consideration. As such, it is well-deserving of a Special Interest award.