Celebrating 20 Years
Top 10 Find a Projector Reviews Throw CalculatorCalc Buyer's Guide Expert Blogs Projector Forums

Short Throw Projector

Highly Recommended Projector
Ease of Use
Intended Use:
NEC M353WS Projector NEC M353WS
(add to Compare List)
Go to My Compare List

10000:1 Contrast Ratio
3500 Lumens
PC 3D Ready
Street Price: n/a
$1,299 MSRP

Key Features

Brightness Adjustment. Along with the brightness variations that are associated with the seven preset picture modes, the M353WS has two Eco settings that provide a lot of flexibility for setting brightness. Normal Eco reduces brightness by 18% and Full Eco reduces it by 43%. Since the M353Ws we tested put out 4,355 lumens, these two Eco settings can extend lamp life while still putting up a very bright image.

Image Adjustment. There are seven picture mode presets on the M353WS. They include High Bright for maximum brightness and Presentation, Video, Movie, Graphic, sRGB, and Natural for specific applications where different settings for brightness, contrast, saturation, sharpness, and hue are called for. Unlike most projectors in this class, color temperature can be set to specific Kelvin temperatures in four steps from 5,000° (warm tones) to 9,000° (cool tones), and all image adjustments can be applied to HDMI images.

Network Control. The M353WS has an extensive variety of networking options all the way from local computer control to remote projection of the screen image.

Using the Virtual Remote Tool, you can control certain projector functions from the computer via its VGA cable connection to the M353WS. The same functionality can be achieved using a USB connection once the Image Express Utility Lite application has been installed. When connected to your computer via a USB cable, you can mimic certain mouse actions using keys on the remote control although some movements are rather cumbersome. For better projector control, you can utilize a Web browser and make many projector adjustments normally confined to the remote control.

Projector control can also be done over a LAN. The software utility Pro 4 is installed for PCs and Pro 5 for Macs. Using Image Express Utility Lite, you can send your projector image over a LAN to remote locations.

NEC M353WS Connection Panel

NEC M353WS Rear Connection Panel

Wireless Image Utility. A wireless image utility (optional Wireless LAN adapter required) can project images from Android or IOS mobile devices, and up to four simultaneous image can be projected in the four corners of the image using the Image Express Utility Lite application. Finally, the M353WS is compatible with Crestron's RoomView utility for multiple projector control.

3D Capability. The M353WS is PC 3D ready, so some 3D material can be presented. Viewing will require the use of an extra cost RF emitter that plugs into the M353WS as well as DLP Link LCD shutter eyeglasses which are available from several commercial sources. NEC recommends products from Xpand (X105-RF-X2 emitter and AD025-RF-x1 glasses) that meet the VESA standard.

Menus and Remote Control. The M353WS has the most extensive on-screen menu system we have encountered. The good news is that there are settings for every imaginable function, but the bad news is that it can take some searching to find those settings. The further good news is that many of the settings are only done once, and the ones that you may adjust more frequently are confined to two menus.

The remote control is full-sized so you are not likely to misplace it. Source selection and menu navigation are properly placed at the top of the remote while little-used functions like aspect ratio or digital zoom are at the bottom and a bit harder to reach using one hand.

Warranty. NEC warrants the M353WS for two years, and the original lamp is warranted for one year or 500 hours of usage, whichever occurs first. Replacement lamps are warranted for 90 days or 500 hours of usage.

Previous Page
Next Page
Review Contents: Introduction Key Features Performance Set Up and Install
  Limitations and Conclusion

You support ProjectorCentral when you buy
the NEC M353WS from these
authorized resellers.
Thank you!

Comments (1) Post a Comment
Dale Posted Apr 27, 2016 11:29 AM PST
Noticed the spec is 10,000:1 contrast ratio but there is no mention in your review of really how good or bad the black levels tested. We all know the differences in contrast ratio claims from the various manufactures and I have noticed as of late sometimes it gets overlooked in your reviews. Since you rated the performance five stars...were the black levels actually decent? To me this is one of the most important aspects of a projector especially if it is going to be used for video and movies. Thanks for all your reviews!

Post a comment

Commenting on this article is easy and does not require any registration. Your email address is necessary for you to activate your comment once it has been submitted. It will not be shown to other site viewers. ProjectorCentral reserves the right to remove any comment at any time for any reason. Foul language is not permitted, nor are personal attacks. No HTML allowed. All comments should remain on topic.


Email Address:(used only to confirm your comment)

Your Comment:

(Enter the numbers as they appear to the left)