A mighty mini-projector

SAN FRANCISCO (09/22/2003) - Mobile users who want a projector for their road shows will love InFocus Corp.'s new LP120. Weighing just 1.98 pounds and standing 2.05 inches tall, the svelte, eye-catching LP120 is a solid performer capable of projecting bright, colorful images. The unit's biggest drawback is its not-so-diminutive US$2799 price tag.

Whereas most portable projectors tend to be about equal in length and width, the LP120 is oblong, measuring 4 inches long by 9.75 inches wide. But the LP120's small size belies its excellent projection power: It boasts the same native XGA (1024 by 768) resolution and 1100 ANSI lumens of brightness as DLP (Data Light Processing) projectors often twice its size or larger.

My tests of a preproduction LP120 yielded impressive--and amazingly quiet--results. PowerPoint images, digital photos, and various other test images appeared sharp and bright when projected a distance of about 8 feet from machine to screen, making it a good fit for the average small conference room accommodating a dozen or so people.

Besides accepting computer input, the LP120 supports video and audio input, though its built-in 1-watt speaker is incapable of delivering robust sound for a multimedia presentation (or a DVD movie). The bundled remote control offers relatively few functions and lacks access to most of the projector controls. (InFocus provides three different full-featured remotes, but each of these costs extra.)

My test unit came with a protective sleeve for the projector and a pouch for the cables, but no traditional carrying case. (You can, however, upgrade the package to include a custom Coach briefcase for $500 more.) Even without the elegant case, the LP120 isn't cheap; but for people who value good performance and excellent portability, it has the makings of a worthy investment.

InFocus LP120

Preproduction unit, not rated

Featherlight projector is a pricey marvel of form and function.

Price when reviewed: $2799.

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