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LG Minibeam PW800 Projector Review - Summary

Posted on July 26, 2015 by Art Feierman
The LG PW800 is a pocket class projector that offers a lot a features for a modest $599.99 MSRP.  However, like most other pico and pocket projectors it has some significant limitations.  In many ways this becomes a trade-off between size vs. performance.  Larger projectors can produce a brighter image and offer much better built-in audio quality while the PW800 is highly portable with lots of built-in capabilities.  The LG Mini-Beam PW800 would seem to be primarily marketed as a highly portable consumer home entertainment projector, but one that easily doubles as a road warrior’s  small and light projector suitable for small group business presentations or a highly portable model for use by a teacher/instructor when the classroom lacks a installed projector.

Picture Quality

Considering this a relatively low cost pocket projector, the PW800 is capable of producing some good images with the out-of-the-box picture modes.  In the best such mode, the colors were reasonably accurate and well saturated (even a little too saturated for video viewing when using the factory default settings).  Like other pocket and pico projectors that I have reviewed, the image sharpness wasn’t quite as good as with “full size” projectors with the same native 1280 x 800 (or similar) resolutions.

The black levels and image contrast, while better than typical for low cost 3LCD business and classroom projectors, were only average for this class of DLP projector.  There was no color fringing observed in the projected image, which indicates the lens doesn’t suffer from chromatic aberration.   Overall, I would say the PW800 produces a very good image for a pocket- class projector.


No pocket class projector can be considered very bright and the PW800 is certainly no exception.  In the better picture modes the measured light output was only about 200 lumens, which means you will need to keep the image size relatievely small in order to get an acceptably bright image, especially if there are any room lights to contend with.

LG specs list the screen size as up to 100 inches and I would suggest this would only be realistic when used with a projection screen with some gain, with the PW800 operating in its brightest mode (i.e., Vivid) and in a fully darkened room.  Under this same conditions, but when the PW800 is operating in its better quality picture modes (e.g. Cinema), the maximum screen size I would recommend would be perhaps 75 inches.  When dealing with moderate room lighting the projected image size will need to be kept even smaller to maintain a bright enough image.

One could consider the LG MiniBeam PW800 to be a great starter “home entertainment” projector for today’s millennials who have “cut the cord” no satellite or cable boxes, and instead rely on the internet, and MHL streaming sticks such as Roku’s for their content.   Also for those in living in a metro area where over-the-air broadcast TV signals are relatively strong, the addition of a simple, small antenna could allow for reception of local HDTV broadcasts using the projector's build-in digital TV tuner.  However, this is not just a home entertainment projector as it also would be good alternative for a business or education application when a highly portable projector is needed.

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Audio Quality

I found the maximum audio volume to be limited, as one would expect from a pair of very small 1 watt speakers.    It should be adequate when being used for a business presentation to a small group or for use as a personal home entertainment system.  However, connecting up to external powered speaker(s), would be needed for use in a moderate size room and/or for a larger audience or where playback of music or movies is important.


  • Very small and light weight
  • HD resolution of 720p! (higher than many pico and pocket projectors)
  • Long lasting LED light source
  • Built-in media player with good support for displaying photos, videos, and playing audio files
  • Directly display MS Office documents from a USB flash drive for computer-free business or education presentations
  • Good color in best picture mode
  • Support for MHL via the HDMI input
  • Antenna input and DTV tuner for reception of over-the-air broadcast TV
  • A good, feature rich mobile home entertainment projector
  • Suitable for casual gaming
  • Suitable for small room, small group presentations

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  • Measured lumens well short of manufacturer claimed value
  • No network support
  • No mode offered with really low input display lag, as would be desired by serious gamers (really hard core gamers want 33ms or less).
  • Small, low powered, built-in speakers offer only limited volume levels and low fidelity


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