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Lifewire / Hayley Prokos
Long battery life
Auto keystone glitches
Perfect for those looking for a portable projector with both practical and bonus features.
After reviewing a handful of projectors, I've decided the ViewSonic M1+ Portable Projector is the best value yet. Weighing in at two pounds, it offers a robust speaker system (a feature that's so consistently lacking in other portable projectors), crisp projection up to 100 inches, and a small but sturdy body, all for under $300.
Wireless screen mirroring, integrated Harman Kardon Bluetooth speakers, and a smart stand for 360-degree projection are among this mini projector’s key features. It also has a built-in battery that holds a six-hour charge and guarantees 30,000 hours of operational life, so you’ll be able to make the most of this projector. But really, there’s so much to love about this little projector. The attached metal stand doubles as a lens cap, which helps to keep it from being damaged in transit. I’m a sucker for multifunctional features, but the fact that this design eliminates the need for a tripod setup was thrilling enough.
On the side of the projector you’ll find its ports: a micro SD, DC power, USB Type C, HDMI 1.4, mini-jack 3.5mm, and USB Type A. They’re concealed by a trap door, so to speak, and can be accessed by pulling a small tag. Just above that is a focus ring to make adjustments as needed. At the back, you’ll find four keys for manual control and one of two speakers on the device.
The ViewSonic M1+ is easy to set up and control, which is lucky, because the manual isn’t all too helpful (I don’t do so well with pictures-only guides). Upon unboxing, I quickly learned that swiveling the stand to uncover the lens signals the device to power on. After doing that, it was easy to plug and play presentations, videos, and pictures.
The image projecting from the ViewSonic M1+ was crisp, and the device cast a big screen, as the shorter throw lens projects up to 100-inches from 8- to 9-feet. The only drawback I could see was the autofocus feature, which tends to be a bit of a pain in projectors generally, for the tendency to focus and then refocus.
The attached metal stand doubles as a lens cap, which helps to keep it from being damaged in transit.
The audio on the ViewSonic M1+ is certainly worse than a speaker, but better than most other miniature projectors. The fan whispers, and while it’s somewhat noticeable, it’s far from disruptive.
Good mini projectors are usually an investment, particularly those with well-thought design and good sound quality. Among the many things that’s great about the ViewSonic M1+ is its fair price point given all that it offers.
Among the many things that’s great about the ViewSonic M1+ is its fair price point given all that it offers.
I’m mostly a fan of the Anker Nebula Capsule II (view on Amazon) for the panoply of features that it offers; it truly takes entertainment on-the-go to a new level. And yet, the ViewSonic M1+ gives it a run for its money. It might not include Google Assistant or Chromecast like the Capsule II, but the quality of the speaker, Bluetooth capability, and overall thoughtful design make the M1+ a worthy opponent.
The larger price tag on the Nebula II certainly justifies all of the bells and whistles that the M1+ lacks, but if you’re not looking for all of that, the ViewSonic M1+ could be the one for you.
Check out our other reviews of the best mini projectors on the market today.
This is a premium portable projector that’s full of practical and user-friendly features, for less than a premium cost.
The ViewSonic M1+ is one of the best projectors for life on-the-go, as it can deliver convenient entertainment nearly anywhere. It hits the middle of the road in terms of price, which makes it easy to say that it’s worth every penny for those who care about image quality, sound quality, portability and ease-of-use.