The sweet spot from a value stand point on portable projectors, in terms of weight, would be 5-7 lbs. We say this because projectors in that size class will usually provide higher performance than the lighter 3-4 lb. models, and at a nice price. Therefore, if you don’t need the absolute lightest portable projector, this is the range where you will get the most bang for your buck! Truth is, projectors have gotten small enough and light enough that the full-feature sets normally found in projectors for fixed installation are now often available in low cost, 6-8 lb. portable projectors. A lot of portable projectors, therefore, end up in conference rooms, classrooms, training rooms, permanently mounted despite their small size. The slightly larger models that can still move from room to room, however, dominate the industry.
In many cases, current portable projector models offer as much connectivity as projectors many times their size and price. Portable projectors can offer advanced networking, wireless capabilities, and can, as of recently, even stream directly from the internet without a computer.
Yet not all uses for portable projectors are business anymore. Portable projectors are now coming 3D ready and can be integrated iPad, iPod, Android, or other mobile device technology. Portable projectors also integrate with gaming systems, hand gesture recognition, and webcam technology... The possibilities are endless.
There is something out there for everyone. For example, there are approximately 250 active portable business projectors on the market at any given time. And that doesn't even include smaller pico and pockets projectors.
For portable business projectors, there are often many variations of a single basic model, with each varying in anything from resolution and brightness to extra features and networking capabilities.
Portable projectors cover vast size range, from as low as a few ounces to roughly 10 lbs. Within portable projectors are pico projectors, mini projectors, pocket projectors, and the standard portable projectors we've been discussing here.
Let's take a look at the variety of portable projectors available on the market today.
Above, the Optoma PK320 of the smallest class of portable projector - the pico projector.
The LG PF85U Pocket projector, (one of the brightest, and highest resolution of its type) the second smallest portable projector class:
The Casio XJ-S57 Super Slim is one of the thinnest projectors available, and can fit conveniently into your briefcase or carry-on luggage.
The 7 lb. Epson Powerlite 99W portable won our Best In Classroom award last year:
Basically, there are plenty of slightly smaller projectors out there between 2.5-5 lbs. for the hardcore road warrior who is always on the go. If you are constantly traveling – bringing your work life in the car or on the airplane with you – chances are you're taking your portable projector everywhere. This size portable projector is a great compromise between portability and image quality – these models are the smallest and lightest but still have high performance.
But if you're not the type who needs your projector to fit in your briefcase or carry-on luggage, you might not care if your projector is 3 or 13 lbs. Some portable projectors are rarely taken off site or are moved only from room to room, so being the most lightweight is not necessary.