The LG CineBeam PU700R is a home entertainment projector with an impressive 4K Ultra High Definition (UHD) (3,840 x 2,160) picture. For $1,699, this smart projector brings high-quality visuals to your living space. It utilizes advanced technology, featuring a single Texas Instruments 0.47-inch Digital Light Processing (DLP) Digital Micromirror Device (DMD) to display stunning images on your screen.
One of the standout features of the PU700R is its use of an RGB LED light source. This light source enables the projector to deliver up to 1,000 ANSI lumens of brightness. With up to 20,000 hours of light source life, you can enjoy many hours of entertainment without worrying about frequent bulb replacements. This extended lifespan adds to the projector's overall value and ensures long-term usage. More importantly, the PU700R does a lot with the light provided by the RGB LED light source.
Colors are rich without the typical oversaturation often found on DLP projectors. Skin tones are excellent, and other than the projector's brightest preset mode; the overall hue looked natural without the blueish-green hue I've noticed on other LED projectors by LG.
HDR performance on the projector was decent, with HDR10 content benefiting from increased dark and bright area detail in projected images. The benefits of HDR were not as noticeable as on some brighter LG projectors, but I could see an overall improvement with HDR-encoded content.
The PU700R offers direct access to streaming services like Disney+, Apple TV, and Amazon Prime Video. These streaming services are excellent; however, the company's webOS store offers fewer video streaming applications than many competitors. Netflix is not available, nor are apps like Paramount Plus and HBO Max.
There are far fewer apps for everything, including general applications and games. The good news is that a range of affordable streaming devices is available for as little as $19.99, up to $149 for premium devices like Apple TV 4K.
Regarding video picture quality, the projector performed well. Although it wasn't flawless, the color accuracy overall was impressive, delivering natural-looking skin tones and good image contrast. The projector is most effective in environments with minimal ambient light, but it can still produce a decent image, even with a lamp in the corner or when the blinds are drawn on a window. While it may not be my top pick for a dedicated home theater projector, its versatility and range of features compensate for the slightly dimmer image.
My biggest issue is with the projector's focus uniformity. The image can be focused razer sharp in the middle of the screen but gets soft quickly, well before the extreme corners of the screen. The result is an image that should be sharper than it is.
Samsung Freestyle $699 MSRP
The Samsung Freestyle shares a similar look to the LG PU700R, so much so that if you don't see them in person, you may be tempted to this that these two projectors are direct competitors, but they are not however I think it's worth briefly covering why. Both projectors share a similar pivoting design allowing them to project a square image on various surfaces, including irregular ones. Both are smart-enabled and meant to be transportable although the Samsung does have an optional battery that it can use.
The LG is a 4K UHD projector compared to the Samsungs much lower Full HD resolution which is why there is such a big price difference between the two products.
It really comes down to the use case. If you are looking for a truly portable projector that can be used anywhere if the optional battery is charged, then the Samsung Freestyle is the better choice. If you want a 4K UHD projector with higher brightness and contrast that offers a compelling home entertainment experience, then the LG PU700R is the projector you want.
JMGO N1 Ultra $2099 MSRP
The JMGO N1 Ultra is a smart, 4K, triple laser projector selling for an MSRP of $2,099; JMGO says it’s the world’s first 4K laser projector that works like a gimbal allowing it to be set up and easily adjusted. From a design perspective, the N1 Ultra and the PU700R have much in common. Regarding performance and price, they are similarly capable, with the JMGO offering around 2500 ANSI lumens of brightness and an RGB triple laser light source.
The N1 Ultra is more of a home theater projector that can be transportable than the LG, which is more of a home entertainment projector. As a transportable projector, you get a lot more bang for your buck with the LG selling for $400 less than the JMGO. However, the JMGO offers more than double the brightness and contrast of the LG and features a powerhouse onboard sound system and an RGB laser light source for only a few hundred dollars more.