Posted on June 6, 2007 By Art Feierman
06/6/2007 – Art Feierman
I’ve been seeing these tiny LED projectors at trade shows for probably close to two years now, and mostly my attitude has been “cute” but too dim to be useful. None-the-less, they have been getting a bit brighter, and I have received emails asking about them, so I turned to Mitsubishi, and asked about a review unit of their 2nd generation PK20. The Mitsubishi PK20 (link to specs) claims a “massive” 25 lumens, a spec that can only make me chuckle, as the first portable projectors (sub 20 pounds) back in 1994, even then, were 110 lumens. Today’s typical LCD and DLP entry level projectors are all over 1000 lumens. So, what, I thought, can anyone do with 25 lumens.
It truly surprised me, but, it turns out that the PK20 is actually bright enough for a lot of things, as you will see in the various photographs in this review. I had hoped to check out the PK20 with the optional battery pack, but, alas, the review unit came without one.
What it’s not, is a serious projector for getting up in front of 20 or 100 people for a presentation. That said, it definitely has enough horsepower for a presentation in front of a couple or three people, with some lights on, probably best at 40″ diagonal, although with lights very low, 60″ is doable.
And it is fun as a game player’s projector, hooked up to an Xbox, Wii or PlayStation… and shining it on a wall or screen. And, since I go camping in the Grand Canyon every year, I’m going to try what someone suggested – shining it on a wall of my tent, or on a sheet, at night – what for, I’m not sure (but maybe a movie played off my laptop, or maybe a music video (I take a good portable iPod compatible sound system with me.)
But enough rambling. Just one more thing. Despite all my misgivings before I started working with the PK20, I am most impressed. While I decided that it really wasn’t appropriate to give it our Hot Product Award, (hey, there are more expensive 2 pound projetors with 40 times the brightness) it is perfect for our far less frequently issued Special Interest Award. So, here it is: Mitsubishi’s PK20, in all of its palm sized, 1.1 pound glory.
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