AAXA P300 Portable Projector Review
April 5, 2013,
Reasonably good data image quality. Data image quality for the P300 is good enough for most purposes short of reading small-size text or making out fine detail on screen. It offers eye-catching colors in all modes and excellent color balance, with suitably neutral grays at various levels from black to white in every mode.
One unusual issue, which I've rarely seen with other projectors, is that text was noticeably easier to read with an HDMI connection than with VGA. With VGA, both black text on white and white text on black were readable at 9 points, but reading took a little effort because of an apparent soft focus. With HDMI both were easily readable. A close look at the screen from a foot away showed that the characters were actually better formed with the digital connection.
Usable video quality. The P300's video quality is best described as watchable. Movie mode is too dark, and Standard mode, which is the default setting, lacks contrast. However, Presentation mode offers reasonable video quality for this class of projector, with the brightest image of the three modes and better contrast than Standard mode.
The projector did well on both posterization and shadow detail, with only the slightest hint of either problem and only in scenes that most data projectors have trouble with. Arguably the most serious issue is that colors in the range of red are a little off, tending to be a bit oversaturated and either a touch too magenta or too orange. However, few people will be seriously bothered by it.
Few rainbow artifacts. One potentially key advantage for the P300 for anyone who sees rainbow artifacts easily, as I do, is that it shows very few of them. The only time I saw them with data images was with one test screen that's designed to bring them out. With video, I saw them in one color scene that also tends to bring them out, and in a black and white clip. I also saw some occasional hints in other scenes, but only rarely. In most scenes they didn't show up at all.
Highly portable. Weighing 0.8 pounds by itself, 1.0 pounds with the battery, and 1.3 pounds with the battery and power block, the P300 is light enough to bring with you without a second thought. It's also small enough, at 1.5" x 5.9" x 3.8" (HWD) to fit into a briefcase or laptop bag easily. And because it can read a variety of file types directly from a USB memory key or MicroSD card, including JPG, BMP, and TXT in my tests, you don't need to carry a computer or other bulky image source.
At least as important is that with the optional battery, the P300 can do something that none of it's most direct competition can do, namely: work without a power outlet. According to AAXA, a fully charged battery will last for more than 60 minutes.
One oversight is that AAXA doesn't ship the P300 with a carrying case, which is something you might want both to carry the projector and help keep everything together, including the power block, credit-card size remote, adaptors, and other items you might want to carry with it.
Low running costs. As with most of its competition, the P300's red, green, and blue LEDs are meant to last the life of the projector, eliminating the need to buy replacements. AAXA rates them at 15,000 hours.
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