In this review we will analyze Aukey’s Portable Mini Projector. It is a product with an extremely affordable price and for this reason it could attract attention. But with very cheap products there is always a risk. Let’s see the details!
The technology behind projectors is becoming more advanced and affordable. In fact, from products that started at several hundred euros destined for a niche use for those who had the economic availability and above all space, the new projectors are increasingly pushing into the mass market competing in price and performance with TVs. Today we present a low-end product, but for this very attractive: the Aukey mini portable projector. During this review we will explore its strengths and weaknesses to help you better understand if it is the right product for you!
Aukey Mini Portable Projector Review: Packaging, Design and Build Quality
Let’s start by saying that this projector is really compact: with yours dimensions of 22 x 17 x 9 cm and a weight of just over a kilo can be easily stored in a piece of furniture or inside the backpack to be carried around (although we recommend the purchase of an ad hoc bag to avoid damaging it with possible bumps and jolts). To the eye this Aukey Mini Portable Projector is really pleasing. The white color interspersed with a satin gray band makes it very elegant and easy to integrate into the furniture of the case. Since the walls are usually in soft colors, even hanging it on the wall will not be noticeable too much. Installation is very simple: just place the projector on a support such as a table in front of the screen or a white surface and you’re done. In the lower part there is also a screw that allows you to tilt the device to project the image higher and rubber feet with a good grip or alternatively a threaded hole to install it on a tripod or other supports. Unfortunately there is an important limit: the projector must be arranged so that the light beam is perfectly orthogonal because there is no horizontal keystone correction. The shooting ratio allows you to project a screen from 50 inches to 1.5 meters or 70 inches to about 2 meters, rising to about 100 to 3 meters.
Everything is obviously made of plastic and we could not expect more given the really low price. Despite this, however, the external chassis it is quite solid and creaks little to the touch. The quality of buttons and dials on the other hand is rather low: they are inaccurate and the noise is not very reassuring, but quite fluid it must be said. However, a very convenient remote control is supplied with all the buttons for the necessary adjustments, so in fact the projector is only touched to install it and adjust the focus and keystone. A big problem in our opinion, however, is the dust: there does not seem to be an efficient filtering system and from the first use the dust begins to accumulate on the lens. In day-to-day use, you don’t notice that much, but on uniform screens it does.
Aukey Mini Portable Projector uses LCD projection technology, certainly the most common among cheap products even if (as we will see later) it places limits on image quality. There resolution is 1280 x 720p. There are several connection ports: HDMI, 2x USB (cannot power external HDDs), AV and 3.5mm audio jack. We also have the ability to connect the projector to Wi-Fi to take advantage of Miracast technologies and broadcast the screens of our devices. There are also integrated speakers.
In packaging in addition to Aukey Mini Portable Projector are included:
- HDMI cable
- cavo AV
- power cord
- remote controller
- Warranty and instruction manual
Aukey Mini Portable Projector review: image quality and sound
Image quality tests were conducted by projecting a screen of about 70 inches on a white wall. We remind you that the defects in the image quality are accentuated as the screen widens, so we do not recommend going too far beyond this value. The brightness measure is circa 230 lumen. A low value, but which allows you to easily see your content as long as you have a completely dark room. It is absolutely not usable in a room that is lit, even by just a light bulb. THE blacks appear to be gray of medium intensity, this is due to the limitations of LCD technology. The low brightness value and washed out blacks affect contrasts that are quite low, even if they align with what we see in low-end monitors and TVs.
Also the uniformity of the image is not very good, with the area in the center that is visually more illuminated than the peripheral ones. It is very noticeable in the dark scenes of course. We also detected a motion blur effect on very fast moving subjects, which, however, does not disturb too much and in any case is a common phenomenon even on low-end TVs. Finally Aukey Mini Portable Projector struggles to reproduce colors, many shades and details are lost and mixed. A little because of the low resolution, a little because of the color space of the projector itself which is a bit limited.
Focus and keystone
As already mentioned, Aukey Mini Portable Projector is only equipped with the correction of keystone distortion in the vertical direction. Then you will have to position the projector so that the beam is perpendicular to the projection surface. Instead, you can tilt up or down to raise or lower the image and then correct the distortion with the appropriate ring on the lenses. A second ring instead manages the focus. It all sounds simple enough, but unfortunately it is not possible to focus the entire screen precisely. peripheral areas always suffer. Also, keystone correction competes with focusing so that a perfectly straight and focused image cannot be obtained. With a little patience you have to find a compromise.
In an already very cheap product, great quality could not be expected. And indeed it was. The sound coming from the internal audio system is muffled and metallic. A lot is lost compared to the original one, the various harmonics are mixed. In conclusion. We absolutely recommend using it in tandem with a sound bar or portable speaker. Unfortunately Aukey Mini Portable Projector it is not equipped with Bluetooth. The only way to connect an external audio system is to use an AUV cable or take advantage of having the audio output directly from the device connected via HDMI.
Aukey Mini Portable Projector review: user experience
Let’s move from the slightly more technical part to the user experience. The projector is charged as soon as it is turned on a very simple and sparse start menu from which you can access the settings and choose the source to be projected. It is very reminiscent of the menu of the very first Smart TVs. In any case it is not possible to use Aukey Mini Standalone Portable Projector like other models equipped with Android TV operating system. When using the projector it emits a continuous buzzing quite loud, but not so much that it overpowers the sounds. It is heard only when the reproduced sound is very faint. However the cooling fan does its duty because the projector heats little even after a couple of hours of continuous use.
Despite the numerous flaws, it must be said that being able to see your favorite movies and series on a screen projected like that of the cinema is exciting. After a while, however, the limits immediately come out. Many defects are “masked”, for example the less than perfect focus on the sides becomes secondary because we usually focus on the center of the image. But the limits of resolution, contrast and dynamic range are felt. Low contrasts make scenes appear washed out and lack the original impact. There low resolution and the inability to reproduce details correctly and the colors have repercussions in many situations: from landscapes to the skin of the protagonists, which almost completely loses its natural texture and color. The effect is very similar to that of an old HD Ready LCD TV which they produced about 10-15 years ago. Overall this is not something unwatchable, but if you are used to the detail and contrasts of modern 4K TVs you will have to scale back expectations a lot.
The experience improves a lot if you look at it cartoons and anime. In this case we do not have all the details and color gradations that are found in live films. Hence many defects lose their importance. They remain the colors a bit ‘busted (but adjustable with a little patience from the menu) and obviously the limit imposed by the contrast, but overall the quality of the final experience is higher than that of a film.
Let’s sum it up. Surely if you have never used a projector before, the first impact with this Aukey Mini Portable Projector will be wow. However, over time you will certainly have to contend with the numerous limitations that such an inexpensive product imposes. We cannot praise him for the image quality which is quite low when compared with other devices. But we can certainly say that at this price, among the lowest on the market, the purchase could make sense.
Obviously, before buying, you must have in mind everything we have said about the defects and limitations of this product. That said, we believe that for occasional and unpretentious use this product is ideal. Maybe to see a game or a movie with friends after a dinner. For those with children it is a very interesting solution, for example: little expense, a lot of yield since the little ones do not have many pretensions and in any case with the cartoons the defects are less accentuated. If, on the other hand, you want a product to be used regularly to see high quality content then look for more, but you will be forced to quintuple your budget at least. We conclude by stressing again that the numerous defects of this product are commensurate with the price: for less than 100 euros you don’t even bring an HD TV home. This projector, on the other hand, allows for a new and particular viewing experience. If you are able to accept its limits, great emotions await you! That’s all from the electronic section, keep following us!
Points in favor
- Construction and design
- Compactness and ease of use