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Viewsonic PLED-W800 Portable LED Projector - Hardware Tour

Posted on December 12, 2014 by Art Feierman
PLED-W800 PROJECTOR REVIEW - HARDWARE TOUR:  Overview, Lens, Control Panel, Inputs and Connectors, Remote Control, Menus

PLED-W800 Hardware Overview

The PLED-W800 - and its "stripped down" sibling, the W600, are the same size, which is to say, very nicely small.   It's what is typically called a pocket projector, although that's misleading since it's too big for all but the baggiest pants pockets.  Still it measures a very nicely compact, being roughly: 7 inches wide, 5.5 inches deep, and just a tiny fraction over 2 inches tall.

The W800 weighs in at 1.8 pounds, but that does not include the power brick which adds just over a half pound to the total.  Let's call it 2.5 pounds, which is very nicely light, considering the muscle.  There are a pair of 2 watt speakers built in, for very decent sound considering the projector's small size.

There are three small on the bottom of the projector.  One small rubber foot in the front center and two more toward the back left and right, for a stable 3 point stance.


On the top of the Viewsonic projector, you will find the recessed focus ring for the lens located directly behind the lens.

The Control Panel is located on the top, and all the inputs and other connectors are in the back, except for the cable from the power brick which plugs into what is the left side if you are facing the front of the projector.

The front foot is adjustable via the usual  screw thread type design.  I specifically want to mention that at first glance you probably won't realize that it is adjustable.

The IR sensor for the remote control is located on the back.  I mention this now, because I'm less than thrilled that there isn't a front sensor as well.  Unless the room is very small, you won't be able to get a bounce off of your screen, and have the sensor pick it up.  I found this to be a mild inconvenience while working with the projector since I typically find myself sitting just forward and to the right of the projector.  That forced me to point the remote to the rear wall for a bounce to the sensor.  Like I said, an inconvenience worth noting, but if that's the only issue you find with a projector then you are doing really well.

PLED-W800 Projector Lens and Lens Throw

Moving on, let's start at the front with the lens.  As is typical of these LED pocket projectors, the lens is manual, and does not have zoom.  (The projector has digital zoom which is not the same thing.)

Without having a zoom lens, if you want to fully fill a particular sized screen the projector will have to be exactly the right distance away.  How far you ask?

To fill a 100" diagonal image that's 16:10 (WXGA), the front of the projector needs to be placed about 9.9 feet back from the screen.   Or, since this projector is more likely to be used with smaller screens, for a small 4 foot diagonal image, the projector sits back 4 foot nine inches from the screen.

PLED-W800 Control Panel

There's nothing really unusual about the W800's control panel, except perhaps its diamond orientation "pointing" to the front of the projector.

The Power button is in the lower left (press once for On, twice to power down).  On the right of it is the Source button for manually selecting the source.  Note that the projector has an Auto source option which will look and find the first available source.  It will start looking with the last source used, which makes sense and saves time.

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The four navigation arrow keys are in a diamond configuration, with the Menu/Exit button in the center.

Each of the four buttons has a separate function when not navigating the menus.  The Up arrow instead launches the Color presets choices, the Down arrow, the audio choices, while the left and right arrows are volume down, and up.

All considered the PLED-W800 has a fairly typical control panel layout, even if the esthetics are a bit different than most.

Inputs and Connectors

For a small projector like the W800, it is pretty well endowed. By comparison, the W600 would be described as "stripped down."

Let's start looking at the back left and work toward the right.

Far left is the only IR sensor for the remote.  Next to it are a pair of stereo mini-jacks, the first one is an Audio Output, the second one a stereo Audio In.

Next comes the SD card slot, followed by the HDMI input with MHL.  Rounding out the inputs are the USB and an analog computer (VGA) input (DB15 connector).

The PLED-W600 by comparison has only the audio out, HDMI (with MHL) a USB as a service port and the IR sensor for the remote.

Click Image to Enlarge

Remote Control

PLED-W800_remote-controlThe Viewsonic remote is OK.  I do wish the remote control was backlit. I realize Viewsonic wants a small, lightweight remote for such a small projector.  Still, a lot of owners are going to use these for watching programming or gaming in less than brightly lit rooms.  At least it's not a credit card remote.

Viewsonic packs a lot of relatively small buttons onto the remote, but they are pretty well organized.  My only real complaint is not with the remote, but the lack of a front IR sensor for the remote.  On the bright side, that's a bigger problem for me than for you, since when reviewing, I'm pretty much morally obligated to explore most of everything.

At the top are large green and red buttons for power on and off.  In between them is a small red led light that lights when you press any of the buttons remotes, to show that the remote is working.  Next down are five buttons relating to selecting sources:  HDMI, Computer, Media/USB, as well as a Source select and Auto sync.

Further down is the usual navigation, with the up and down arrows doubling as keystone correction controls when not in the navigation/menu system.

Just below on the left is the blue Menu button, Pattern, which can bring up 5 different test patterns (nice touch) is in the middle, and Exit (for the navigation) is on the right.

The next section is for the media player functions, with seven buttons with the usual Play, Stop, FF, RW, jump Forward, jump Back and Pause.  That leaves nine buttons on the bottom including volume up/down and mute, Freeze, Blank, Lock, Digital Zoom, Color Mode selection and Audio mode selection.



PLED-W800 Menus

I've taken more menu photos than anyone cares to discuss.  A few of them have captions where I feel a comment is deserved.  I'm still loading more in, adding some captions during the first week of publication.

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