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Classroom Projector Report 2013: ViewSonic PJD5533W

Posted on March 21, 2013 by Art Feierman

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Viewsonic PJD5533W

Viewsonic PJD5533w

This Viewsonic PJD5533W is the lowest cost widescreen projector in this report, with an MSRP of $599 and a much lower street price that is a bit under $500.  A single chip DLP projector claiming 2800 lumens and weighing in at a very portable 4.6 pounds (2.1 Kg).

One thing that sets the Viewsonic PJD5533W apart from other lower cost projectors in this report is its 3D.  True, 10 of the 15 projectors in this year's report are 3D capable, but only two projectors sport HDMI 1.4, this Viewsonic, and the Epson W16SK stacked projector system, which starts out at over three times the price.  True, the Viewsonic PJD5533W uses active 3D glasses (standard DLP-Link 3D glasses), rather than the low cost passive ones the Epson uses, but if you need a projector for smaller classes - say less than 20 students, you can easily get enough glasses and still spend far less than the Epson projector's base cost.

Lamp life is rated up to 6000 hours in eco-mode, but like some other new projectors it has still one more mode, which they call Dynamic Eco which dims the image down 70%.   This can be used in darkened rooms, but also as a partial mute of the image when the teacher/presenter doesn't need the projected image for a few minutes.  Also, if the projector is not active - nothing being presented, it will drop into DynamicEco to save lamp, and electric usage.

Mostly, though, this is a solid, low cost widescreen projector with a very limited range zoom lens, and a normal throw distance.  It does have one noteworthy issue, and that's audio.  It's 2 watt speaker likely can't handle a classroom.  the good news, though, is that there is an audio output, making it easy to supplement the audio with a powered external speaker.   Mount this projector or take it with you, it's going to provide good widescreen performance, and a low long term cost of operation and a 3 year warranty.

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