Table of contents:

The best mini projectors 2020 in the test
The best mini projectors 2020 in the test

Video: The best mini projectors 2020 in the test

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Video: Best Mini Projectors in 2020 [Top 5 Picks] 2023, February
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Mini projectors are compact, light, relatively inexpensive and promise a bit of cinema feeling in your own four walls. While video projectors used to be not only bulky, but above all expensive, powerful and compact projectors are now affordable even for smaller budgets. In our buying advice we show what you should pay attention to when buying a mini projector. We also present our four selected test winners in our comparison.

Table of contents Table of contents Cinema at home: Mini-projector in comparison 2020

  • What should you look for when buying a mini projector?
  • The best mini projectors in comparison - facts at a glance
  • The best mini projectors in the test: how they cut off

Table of contents Table of contents Cinema at home: Mini-projector in comparison 2020

  • What should you look for when buying a mini projector?
  • The best mini projectors in comparison - facts at a glance
  • The best mini projectors in the test: how they cut off

What should you look for when buying a mini projector?

The term "mini projector" is not protected. Basically, all compact video projectors that are suitable for normal use in the living room can be understood as mini projectors. However, they are unsuitable for complex presentations in the business sector or as a replacement for a high-end home cinema system. Mini projectors are a good compromise between solid equipment and an attractive price-performance ratio. In our purchase advice, we present the most important features for mini projectors.

  • Brightness: Almost every projector has an easy job in well darkened rooms. However, it looks quite different in daylight or whenever dimming other light sources is not useful. After all, who wants to darken the whole apartment just because the child wants to watch a movie in the living room with a friend? The brightness of electronic devices is usually measured in lumens. However, since the unit allows certain blurring, such as the color of the luminous flux, it is advisable to pay attention to the ANSI standard (American National Standards Institute), a reliable standard similar to the German DIN (German industrial standard). Basically, projectors from 500 lumens can project a good image even in daylight.
  • Resolution: If the image is out of focus, you simply place the projector a little closer to the wall. Some people may think like this or something like this for the first time dealing with the functionality of a projector. In fact, this is just a gimmick. Because moving the projector, possibly also in combination with changing the setting on the focus ring of the projector, may have something to do with the image sharpness, but not with the actual image quality. This is determined not only by the sharpness, but above all by the resolution. If the projector has only a low resolution, all pushing and adjusting will be of little use. Similar to a monitor, a projector also has a so-called native resolution, i.e. a number of fixed pixels, the pixels. Basically, the higher the number of pixels, the better the image of the projector. We recommend a resolution in HD (720p - 1, 280 x 780 pixels). Projectors with Full HD (1080p), i.e. 1, 920 x 1, 080 pixels, are even better. If you only want to use your projector occasionally, you can also cope with a lower resolution.

    Important: Make sure that not only the projector, but also the input signal supports the corresponding resolution.

Gute Auflösung eine Mini-Beamers sorgt für perfektes Kinoerlebnis
Gute Auflösung eine Mini-Beamers sorgt für perfektes Kinoerlebnis

For the perfect home cinema experience, the mini projector should have at least an HD resolution - but full HD is even better!

  • Contrast: White is not the same as white and black is not the same as black. Therefore, the greater the “distance” between white and black, the more contrast the image of the projector. A higher contrast value means better image sharpness.

    However, information about the contrast is not available from all manufacturers.

  • Display: In principle, projectors work according to three different standards:
  1. The most common are LCD projectors that work similar to flat screens, that is, with a liquid film. They have good image quality, but the lamps are usually not as durable as other models.
  2. DLP projectors work with a color wheel and tilt mirrors, so that they are usually a little louder than other models. In addition, they are considered less true to color. But they impress with a very good contrast.
  3. The third type, the LED projector, is considered to be very economical and durable, but the projection area and the light intensity are relatively small.
  • Lifespan of the lamp: Compared to the first projector models, whose lamps were still extremely sensitive, today's projectors are significantly more robust. Most lamps currently have a lifespan of 30, 000 hours or more. Enough to be able to run the projector continuously for almost three and a half years. You do not have to worry too much about the lamp life being too short. However, if you want to use your projector extensively, for example, in continuous operation for a picture show in the shop, you should not ignore the life factor.
  • Connectivity: The best projector is of no use if a cell phone, receiver or computer can only be connected to the device with great effort. An HDMI connection should therefore be standard for all devices. On the other hand, a VGA connection is less necessary, since this standard is being increasingly replaced by HDMI and Co. If you want to play pictures and videos quickly and easily from the data carrier on the projector, you should pay attention to an SD slot and a USB port. The option of wirelessly transmitting the video signal to the projector via WLAN is also very practical. However, the signaling PC must then use the projector's WLAN hotspot so that the usual WLAN connection cannot be used for Internet access.
  • Additional bonus functions: a remote control is standard with almost all mini projectors, as are integrated loudspeakers for playing videos. On the other hand, it is far less common to use the projector on battery power, so that it can be used quickly and easily on the go. Some models also support the Amazon Fire TV stick. This is a very practical function for fans of streaming services, since you can watch films and series on Amazon Prime or Netflix, for example.

The best mini projectors in comparison - facts at a glance

Vamvo L4200

APEMAN M4

GooDee GD-DE-9

BenQ GV1

Price

(Amazon)

approx. 140 euros

about 200 euros

about 70 euros

approx. 369 euros

brightness

4000 lumens

100 ANSI lumens

3, 000 lumens

200 ANSI lumens

resolution

720p

(1280 × 720 pixels)

854 x 480 pixels

800 x 480 pixels

854 x 480 pixels

contrast

2, 000: 1

1, 000: 1

k. A.

100, 000: 1

Display type

LED

DLP

LED

LED

Maximum

Projection

size

200 inches

100 inches

130 inches

100 inches

Lamp

life

duration

50, 000 hours

45, 000 hours

30, 000 hours

Up to

30, 000 hours

in eco mode

HDMI connection

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

VGA connector

No

No

Yes

No

USB connection

2nd

No

WLAN function

No

No

No

Yes

SD

mini-SD

No

Yes

No

Audio output

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Battery operation

yes (approx. 2.5 h)

yes (approx. 2 h)

k. A.

yes (approx. 3 h)

remote control

Yes

No

Yes

Yes

Product-

Dimensions

24.4 x 16.5 x 7.8 cm

9.8 x 9.8 x 2.2 cm

22.7 x 14.6 x 7.9 cm

15.5 x 8 x 8 cm

Weight

1.25 kg

0.21 kg

approx. 1kg

0.70 kg

rating

(Amazon)

3.7 / 5 stars

4.5 / 5 stars

4.2 / 5 stars

3.7 / 5 stars

The best mini projectors in the test: how they cut off

The price-performance winner: Vamvo L4200

The mini projector from the Chinese manufacturer Vamvo, which is still largely unknown in Germany, offers a solid 720p resolution, strong contrasts and good equipment at inputs and outputs, which should be sufficient for all everyday purposes. For example, the L4200 guarantees its own small home cinema for just under 140 euros, in which only the somewhat louder fan noise can disturb. The Vamvo projector has hardly received any attention in professional circles so far, and there are no test reports. With 4.8 out of 5 stars, the Amazon test reviews speak a clear language.

Benefits:

+ Good resolution (HD ready)

+ Good connectivity

+ mini SD slot

Disadvantage:

- Relatively loud fan noise

Reviews:

  • “With the VAMVO projector you get a real Full HD projector at an unbeatable price. The projector comes in a practical, sturdy bag that contains all the cables and the remote control.”(Private test, Amazon, 2019)
  • “The device is okay for the price. You have to accept a few drawbacks in image quality, especially in bright rooms.”(Private test, Amazon, 2019)
  • “Sharp picture, relatively quiet. Sound could be a little better. Overall recommended.”(Private test, Amazon, 2019)

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars

Price: approx. 140 euros

Affiliate Link zu Mini-Beamer Vamvo L4200 auf Amazon
Affiliate Link zu Mini-Beamer Vamvo L4200 auf Amazon

The resolution winner: APEMAN M 4 Mini Beamer

Small but powerful! - The Apeman Mini Beamer should not be fooled by the extremely compact dimensions and the extremely light weight of only 213 grams. Although it only has a native resolution of 854 x 480 pixels, the compact and very flat projector is equipped with a battery. This allows you to operate it without external power for about two hours. The mini projector is also the only DLP projector in our comparison, so it scores with good contrasts. However, the M4 is a bit loud due to the folding mirror mechanism. With a price of just under 200 euros, the Apeman offers adequate image display and a good price-performance ratio.

Benefits:

+ Very small and light

+ Can also be used on battery power

+ Good contrast

Disadvantage:

- Relatively loud

- No remote control

Reviews:

  • "In addition to the good workmanship, you also benefit from various connection options with this mini projector." (Stern, 19)
  • “The Apeman M4 is inexpensive and qualitative. The device impresses many customers, after all it is small and still offers an appealing picture quality. The luminosity could be better, but it is always enough for darkened or very dark rooms.”(Mini-beamer-test.net, 2019)
  • "This mini projector is small, light and, thanks to LED technology, also produces a razor-sharp image." (Theminibeamers.de, 08/2018)

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Price: approx. 200 euros

Affiliate Link zu Mini Beamer Apeman M4 auf Amazon
Affiliate Link zu Mini Beamer Apeman M4 auf Amazon

The award winner: GooDee GD-DE-9 mini projector

The cheapest projector in our comparison is logically not a miracle of performance. The resolution of 800 x 480 pixels is clearly below the HD standard, but this is supported. This means: Even if the projector does not provide HD resolution itself, it is still able to process the high signal rate of the HD format. The maximum image size is 130 inches smaller than that of the Vamvo and Apeman. The entry-level device does not have to hide when it comes to connectivity. All common connections are available, the Amazon Fire TV stick is also supported. Since an upgrade in 2019, the projector has also become significantly quieter. It is a real recommendation for anyone who wants an occasional home cinema experience with a solid video projector at a low price.

Benefits:

+ Amazon Fire TV is supported

+ Very affordable price

Disadvantage:

- Relatively poor resolution

- Small picture size

Reviews:

  • "Ideal for film fans & gamers" (Stern, 2019)
  • “This compact and handy projector offers all the advantages of a mini projector. It is suitable for the playback of films and clips and can be carried in any small transport bag.”(LED projector)

Rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars

Price: approx. 70 euros

Affiliate Link zu Mini-Beamer GooDee GD-DE-9 auf Amazon
Affiliate Link zu Mini-Beamer GooDee GD-DE-9 auf Amazon

The mobility winner: BenQ GV1 mini projector

He cannot do everything that others can do - but he can do some things that others cannot. Therefore, the GV1 of the Taiwanese BenQ group has earned its place in our comparison, although the valuation of the buyers at Amazon is relatively low. The reason for this is likely to be both the low resolution and the relatively small projection size.

What sets the GV1 apart, despite its mediocre basic configuration, is its good, strong battery and the option of connecting a smartphone, tablet or notebook directly to the mini-projector using the integrated WLAN hotspot. This means that cables are completely unnecessary. However, since wireless use is not always useful, an HDMI input would still make sense. You won't find it at GV1. On the other hand, the integrated tilt joint is practical, with which the projector can be easily aligned and adjusted.

Benefits:

+ WiFi function

+ Good battery

+ Joint for adjusting the angle of view

Disadvantage:

- No HDMI connection

- No audio output

- Poor resolution

- Small projection size

- No SD slot

Reviews:

  • "As we could see in a test of the device, it is a mini projector that is ideally suited for mobile work or presentations on the go." (Stern, 19)
  • "With its mini projector GV1, BenQ has created a portable projector that is ideally suited for mobile home cinema as well as for the requirements of business and education." (Heimkinoheld, 11/19)

Rating: 3.7 out of 5 stars

Price: approx. 369 euros

Affiliate Link zu Mini-Beamer BenQ GV1 auf Amazon
Affiliate Link zu Mini-Beamer BenQ GV1 auf Amazon

Norbert Becker

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