There are four settings for the Eco lamp mode: Off, Auto, Normal and Eco. In Auto mode, the projector switches between Off and Eco depending on the picture level, so there are essentially three lamp levels. Changing the Eco lamp mode from Off to Normal resulted in a 28.9% drop in lumen output to 2742 lumens in High Bright mode. Going to Eco mode dropped the output to 2094 lumens, a whopping 45.7% drop from the lamp output with the Eco mode off, which is a greater drop than normal for most Eco modes. Nonetheless, 2094 lumens is likely to be more than enough for any presentation environment with even a modicum of light control and enables the user to take advantage of the M363W’s 8,000 hour lamp life.
For a small, lightweight, high output projector, the NEC M363W is reasonably quiet, particularly in its Eco modes (36dB in Normal lamp mode, 31dB in Eco lamp mode). This is significantly higher than the M322W we reviewed last year, but subjectively, it didn't seem that loud. No rating is given for the projector with the Eco mode completely off, but it doesn't appear to be much louder than the Normal mode. If the aforementioned 45.7% drop in lumen output (in Eco mode) is acceptable, the M363W would be quiet enough for comfortable TV or movie viewing. With the built-in 20 watt speaker, there's no problem overcoming any fan noise without having to resort to external powered speakers.