Projector Reviews

Maxell MP-WU5503 Laser Education Projector Review – Picture and Sound Quality

Maxell MP-WU5503 Laser Education Projector Review – Picture and Sound Quality: Color Modes, Video Image Quality, Text and Presentation Image Quality, Audio Quality

Color Modes

The Maxell MP-WU has excellent color! I was impressed that most modes were pretty true to color, and even Dynamic, the projector’s brightest mode, is quite usable. We usually call brightest modes on projectors your “break glass in case of emergency” modes, because they tend to have a bit of a ghastly green/yellow hue. Some are worse than others, and in the case of the Maxell, I’d say its Dynamic mode is better than some of its competitors. Though it does still have a bit of a green/yellow tinge to it, in an ambient-light-pinch, you’ll be able to use this mode without a huge sacrifice to color.

Including Dynamic, the Maxell has six color modes. The others are as follows: Standard, Natural, Cinema, Whiteboard, and DICOM SIM. The two best modes on this projector are Standard and Cinema. I favored Standard, the brightest best mode, for presentations and websites, while I chose Cinema for video viewing. I found Cinema to have a better handling of skin tones than Standard, though Standard still does a pretty respectable job. It has more of a green tint than Cinema, which has a magenta tint – and magenta has a way of making skin tones look more realistic.

Natural Mode also has good color, though it is of the dimmer modes and has a more desaturated look to it. Whiteboard will be your best mode if projecting on a whiteboard surface, while DICOM SIM. will be your best choice for viewing high contrast films such as X-Rays and MRIs. I have two X-Rays of my cat in the following section to show the capabilities of DICOM SIM. Mode on the Maxell MP-WU5503.

Video Image Quality

Loved the image quality on video. The Maxell’s image is sharp and clear, thanks to the laser light engine (laser projectors tend to look extra sharp), good optics, and, of course, high resolution. My favorite photos – the chimp from the Netflix show Explained, and the Bigelow from Journey to Space – do an excellent job of showing the depth of color and sharpness this projector is capable of.

I used Cinema Mode on all of the projected images in this slider, as I felt this was the best mode for videos. Standard Mode would also look pretty good when projecting video, but I like to give a little variety in the modes I choose for shooting these photos, so that you can get a better idea of what the projector is capable of. Standard Mode is featured in the slider below, in the Text and Presentation Quality section.

Text and Presentation Quality

Thanks to that laser light engine and its WUXGA (1920 x 1200) resolution, the Maxell MP-WU5503 does an excellent job on text, as I would expect from such a projector. Text of all sizes and fonts is extra readable, with no pixel noise around the letters. Pixel noise isn’t common on projectors of this caliber, but I like to mention it because some projectors I’ve reviewed in the past have had this issue with smaller fonts. No issues to report here, though! All of the images in the slider above were taken in Standard Mode.

Looking at our test image for text sizes and colors, 8-point font is highly readable – from about 15 feet back – on a 92” screen. In a large venue environment, where the projected image would be, potentially, much larger, one could read that 8-point font from further back. This font size is almost never used, even on infographics where small fonts are sometimes favored, so I wouldn’t put much thought into it. The most commonly used size is, of course, 12-point font, which was highly readable from as far back in my house as I could get while still in view of the screen – around 30 feet back.

Audio Quality

The MP-WU5503 has a 16-watt mono speaker that easily filled my apartment. My apartment is about the size of a large university classroom, so if this is the environment, consider the speaker on this Maxell to be robust enough to fill your classroom. For those looking at this projector for business, it will be well-suited to larger conference rooms, boardrooms, and meeting rooms.

For those larger venues –lecture halls, museums, etc. – this projector will likely be hooked up to an external sound system, as large venues typically have a sound system in place for this purpose. I wouldn’t use the speaker for a room such as that, as it won’t be enough to fill the space and allow those sitting in the back of a lecture hall to get the full experience of the lesson. Luckily, the Maxell has hookups for external sound!

That does it for our discussion of the picture and sound quality! Next, let’s talk performance. See you on the next page!