Size, we’re constantly being told, matters. Whether it’s your car’s engine, your processor speed, or how small your mobile phone is, what you own and how big (or small) it is is a matter of some importance.
And though this projector from InFocus doesn’t have the sex-appeal of a 6.0-litre V12-engined Ferrari Enzo, or the social kudos of owning a mobile phone so small you can put it in your pocket and hardly know it’s there, it is the smallest projector we’ve ever seen and that counts for something, especially in the normally staid world of business technology.
The LP120 is about the thickness of a Victoria sponge cake, but it’s not this that is so impressive. It’s the footprint of the projector that is truly tiny: if you had enough cash to buy two of these projectors they’d fit side by side on a sheet of A4 paper with room to spare. And one of them weighs less than a bag of sugar.
To bring it down to bald measurements, the LP120 measures just 94mm front to back, is 258mm wide and 52mm thick, and weighs 0.9kg.
The technology that allows this kind of shrinkage is, of course, DLP and it’s all housed in a rather attractive silver and dark grey case with tactile, rubberised top, where all of the controls can be found. It’s nice to see the important functions – such as keystone, volume and source selection – are given their own buttons, and menu navigation is straightforward as well.
Under the front edge of the projector is a single pop-out leg for adjusting the height of the picture. It’s a bit flimsy, so you’ll need to make sure you retract it fully before packing it away, and fiddly to use, though fortunately the build quality elsewhere is much better.
The LP120’s compact dimensions do, however, mean that compromises have been made in terms of its capabilities. Most notably, the size restricts the brightness of the bulb and the potential of the optics, which means that both brightness and maximum screen are down on larger machines. In a world where many projectors start at 2000 ANSI lumens, 1000 ANSI lumens looks a tad underpowered, and a maximum screen size of 137in isn’t all that either.
But it’s really not that much to worry about. Not so long ago, manufacturers were touting projectors with these sorts of specifications for medium-sized boardroom and even small auditorium use, so when you whip this diminutive diamond out of your laptop bag at your next presentation the last thing you, or your audience, will be thinking of is whether or not you’ll be able to read the slides.
Even used for projecting home movies at larger screen sizes, the lack of power doesn’t come in to play too much. True, when compared to a 2000 lumens machine the difference is noticeable and you’ll have to dim your lights a little more, or close the curtains, but this is a small price to pay for the fact that, when the main feature has finished, you can put your projector away in a drawer.