If you’re looking for the best portable projectors on the market, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve searched for the very best compact and easy-to-carry projectors that are ideal for travelling with.
Now, sure, portable projectors aren’t the ideal way to watch the latest Christopher Nolan film, but all the devices on this list are ideal for people who often travel for work. If you’re often visiting clients and colleagues and need to make presentations, the best portable projectors will allow you to quickly and easily set up your presentation in a matter of minutes.
It means you can conduct presentations quickly and easily using your own equipment – rather than having to fiddle around with cables in front of an audience.
That said, they can also be used for entertainment as well, giving you an impressively large home cinema projector screen to watch movies or play games on. Make a note of maximum screen size and resolution, though, as those specs will give you a good idea of how content will look on the wall.
How to pick out a portable projector
The latest portable projector
(Image credit: Xiaomi)
The latest portable projector to come across our desk is the Xiaomi Mi Smart Compact Projector that offers a good image with decent HDR performance and Android TV built-in. If you’re looking for the complete package of a built-in smart operating system, a decent audio quality, and a compact design, then this projector is the way to go.
So, what should you look out for when buying the best portable projector for your needs?
For a start, you should make sure the portable projector has all the connectivity options you require. Most should have HDMI, which will let you plug in almost any device into it, though some will have a mini HDMI port, so you’ll need a special cable.
Meanwhile, other portable projectors have a simple USB output, which allows you to connect laptops and other compatible devices to it. Some of the best portable projectors also offer wireless connectivity, which makes broadcasting from your smartphone or tablet easy.
The best portable projectors also have batteries, which makes them easy to place for optimum image quality. However, there are some that still need to be plugged into a power supply, so bear that in mind when choosing the best portable projector for your needs.
You should also check to see if a portable projector has built-in speakers. If it does, it means that’s one less thing to carry around with you, but don’t go expecting cinema-like sound quality from those small speakers.
As well as listing the best portable projectors, we also have our very own price comparison tool that will help you find the best prices as well.
Best portable projectors at a glance:
- Optoma ML750e
- ViewSonic M1
- Epson EB-S41
- LG Minibeam PH550G
- Asus ZenBeam E1
The ML750e by Optoma is a lot more powerful than the pocket-sized PicoPix from Phillips, but it’s not quite as small. Still, it weighs just 380g with a small footprint that makes this easy to carry around. The differences in size between this and the PicoPix are negligible for the power you get in return: a 700 Lumens lamp that lets you present in rooms that aren’t completely darkened. The Optoma ML750e is one of the best portable projectors in the world thanks to its impressive range of ports. It comes with one MHL-ready HDMI input, a USB 2.0 slot for thumbdrives, a universal I/O slot, and a microSD card slot. The ML550 handled our 90-inch test screen with impressive results, and peaked at a 60-inch-or-so size. However, you need to buy a dongle for Wi-Fi access.
The ViewSonic M1 is a versatile and portable projector thanks to its decent selection of ports despite its small size. This makes it easy to hook up a good range of different devices. Its small design looks good and makes it easy to carry this projector around with you. The price isn’t bad either. However, the low resolution means image quality isn’t quite as good as some of its competitors, and its max brightness is a bit too low, which means that images can look washed-out when used in bright environments. Still, it’s a great portable projector, especially for work presentations.
If you’re looking for something newer, the ViewSonic M2 was just released in August.
Usually, when you’re selecting from the best portable projectors for business use, you’d expect to make a few sacrifices in order to have such a small device – but that’s not the case with the Epson EB-S41. Its 3,300 lumen brightness is much brighter than many other portable projectors, and means you have more flexibility when setting up the EB-S31 in environments where there is still ambient light. The EB-S41 is small and light enough to carry around with you on business trips, but it also has a very large projection size – up to 300 inches – which makes this an incredibly versatile portable business projector.
The LG Minibeam PH550G is a brilliant portable projector that’s ideal people who often work on the road thanks to its compact size – more than justifying its place on our list of the best portable projectors. It’s also wireless as well, allowing you to connect a smartphone or tablet to it, and showcase your presentations or media quickly and easily. This is great for impromptu meetings, and despite its small stature, it offers brilliant image and sound quality.
The Asus ZenBeam E1 is a beautifully designed pocket projector that’s small and light enough to carry around with you if you often make presentations on the road – or if you like to watch movies while travelling. Despite its small size, it can project images up to 120 inches in size, and it has a built-in 6,000mAh battery that can power the projector for up to 5 hours, which makes it rather flexible, as you don’t have to worry about finding a plug socket to power the device. In a rather nice touch, the projector can also double as a power bank for other mobile devices. The Asus ZenBeam E1 isn’t the most powerful portable projector, but its versatility, ease of setup and eye catching design gives it a place on our list of best business projectors.