Projector Reviews

Epson PowerLite U50 Projector Review – Hardware

Epson PowerLite U50 Projector Review – Hardware: Hardware Overview, Inputs and Connectors, The Lens

Hardware Overview

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The Epson PowerLite U50 is a compact projector that can be easily passed or carted around between classrooms or shared amongst conference rooms. It measures just 14.3″ wide by 9.7″ deep and 3.7″ tall.

Epson-PowerLite-U50_Ceiling-Mounted

The air intake vent is located on the right side of the projector when facing the lens, on table top, or on the right when ceiling mounted.

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The hot air exhaust vent is located on the front of the projector to the left of the lense.

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The top of the projector has a small, removable door over the lens which houses its manual lens controls and the power button, which is the only button of the entire control panel.

Inputs and Connectors Panel

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The Epson PowerLite U50 has all the inputs and connectors you need for your typical business and education applications. That means this Epson has you covered for presentations from a computer or smart device (thanks to its wireless capabilities) and playing videos from an external device like a computer or Blu-Ray player, as well as hooking up external speakers if you need to present to a larger room.

Input Amount
HDMI 2 (1 MHL)
Computer: D-sub 15-pin 2
Audio-in: Mini Stereo 2
Network: RJ-45 1
Mbps Serial: RS-232c 1
Monitor Out: D-sub 15-pin 1
USB (Type A) 1
USB (Type B) 1
Audio-out: Mini Stereo 1

As mentioned, the projector has Wi-Fi connectivity, so you can connect a computer or multiple smart devices over Wi-Fi. Some schools do not have reliable Wi-Fi, however, and your school’s Wi-Fi signal is something you should take into consideration when buying such a projector for your district’s classrooms.

The Lens

The Epson PowerLite U50 has a 1.20:1 zoom lens.
The Epson PowerLite U50 has a 1.20:1 zoom lens.

The Epson PowerLite’s lens is located on the front right of the projector, with manual lens controls and a 1.20:1 zoom ratio, giving the projector some placement flexibility. The projector does have a Digital Zoom feature to help with installation, but it is best to get the placement as close to perfect as possible before resorting to Digital Zoom. I have created a chart below with the recommended placement of the projector for both a 16:10 screen, and a 4:3 screen if that is what you have currently installed in your classrooms or conference rooms.

The U50's manual lens controls are hidden under a removable door.
The U50's manual lens controls are hidden under a removable door.

Throw Distance for a 16:10 Screen

Screen Size (Diagonal) Distance from Screen (Wide) Distance From Screen (Telephoto) Distance from Center of Lens to
Base of Screen
30" 34" 42" -1.4"
50" 58" 71" -2.4"
80" 94" 114" -3.9"
100" 118" 143" -4.8"
150" 177" 216" -7.2"
200" 236" 288" -9.6"
300" 355" 355" -14.5"

Throw Distance for a 4:3 Screen

Screen Size (Diagonal) Distance from Screen (Wide) Distance From Screen (Telephoto) Distance from Center of Lens to
Base of Screen
27" 35" 43" -1.5"
50" 66" 130" -2.7"
80" 106" 130" -4.4"
100" 133" 162" -5.5"
150" 201" 244" -8.2"
200" 268" 326" -10.9"
260" 349" 424" -14.2"