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This unashamedly high-end ultra short throw projector is a dazzling debut by lens giant Leica. Stylish design combines with laser-sharp imagery.


  • Premium design
  • Bright, dynamic performance
  • Vidaa smart OS


  • DLP rainbow fringing
  • Expensive
  • Remote control lacks backlighting

Key Features

  • Bright, razor sharp imageBoasting a 3,000 Lumens output, the Cine 1 can be used in rooms with ambient light
  • TV tuner includedThe Cine isn’t just for movies, a TV tuner means can use it for soaps and game shows too
  • Built-in Vidaa 6.0 smart platformTop streaming apps are available from a familiar looking Smart TV OS


Interest in ultra short throw projectors is booming, and this debut entrant from Leica is one of the most ambitious yet. 

Unlike traditional projectors, ultra-short throw beamers can be positioned just a metre or so from a wall or screen, yet still cast a massive 100-inch image. They can be used in relatively small rooms, and you don’t have to worry about walking in front of the beam when you go hunting for snacks.

Leica is, of course, best known for lenses – the venerable German brand has been making them since 1869 – but for this venture, it’s partnered with Hisense, an early pioneer when it comes TV-style UST projection. Leica not only brings its optical expertise to the table but is also responsible for the design and premium finish of the Cine 1.

This partnership promises a lot, and for the most part, it delivers…


The Cine a 1 is available in two iterations, one optimised for a 100-inch display, the other 120-inches. They are priced at £8495 / $8995, or £8995 / $9495 respectively. Parked on our test bench is the 100-incher.

There’s a third model, designed for a smaller 80-inch display, available in Europe, but distribution appears limited.

Like its peers, the Cine 1 can project onto a white wall, or a dedicated screen. Most buyers will probably opt for the former, purely to keep things simple, but Leica does offer an ALR (Ambient Light Reflecting) screen for the Cine 1, priced at £2,200 / $1,800.  


  • Premium, minimalist design
  • Dimensions: 500 x 157 x 388mm (W/H/D) 
  • Weight: 15.1kg

Hands down, this is the most luxurious ultra short throw projector you can buy right now. Beautifully built, it tips the scales at a substantial 15.1kg and protects its onboard sound system with a wraparound fabric grille.

The overall design is clean and contemporary, distinguished by a red Leica logo. One of the Cine 1’s great attractions is its ‘place ‘n’ play’. Simply sit it on designated furniture and power up. Image size is largely dependent on how near or far the projector sits to a wall or screen. 

Leica Cine 1 top view
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

You’ll get a 100-inch image from just a metre. For best picture performance, aim to position this model for its optimised screen size.

The Cine 1 comes with a suitably superior remote control. This hefty handful has dedicated buttons for Netflix, YouTube, Disney+, Prime Video and Freeview Play.


  • Vidaa Smart TV OS
  • Freeview Play TV tuner
  • Wi-Fi

Connectivity is comprehensive. There are three rear mounted HDMIs, complete with eARC (enhanced Audio Return Channel) and ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode) support. There’s also a digital optical audio output, pair of USBs, and Ethernet for wired connectivity.

Leica Cine 1 rear connections
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

There’s no support for high-frame rate gaming or VRR with these HDMI inputs though. Latency is quoted at less than 60ms for 4K/60Hz console gameplay. Wireless connectivity covers Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0, and Apple AirPlay with HomeKit. 

Tuning is much the same as that on a regular smart TV. It’s all very straightforward. 

Overall usability is good. The built-in Vidaa 6.0 interface will be familiar to anyone who has used the platform on a Hisense TV, with its rails of apps and curated content. Key streaming apps are present, along with catch-up TV services.

Leica Cine 1 Vidaa UI
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

In the US, the Cine 1 comes with the Google Android smart system. 

Despite its high brightness, operating noise is low enough not to irritate, at around 32dB. This is easily masked by the projector’s sound system. The Cine 1 triple laser light source is expected to last for 25,000 hours, making it basically maintenance free.


  • 3,000 lumens brightness
  • 4K DLP DMD
  • Triple RGB laser light engine
  • Dolby Atmos compatible

Leica lists the brightness of the Cine 1 at 3,000 ANSI lumens. I found I could comfortably use the projector in a room with moderate light levels. However, pictures really pop in a fully darkened room.

Colour vibrancy is outstanding, with deep, lustrous reds and inviting bold blues. The colour gamut covers 100 per cent of BT2020. 

Beneath the hood is a 0.47-inch 4K XPR DLP DMD, partnered with a triple-RGB laser light engine. The Cine 1 isn’t native 4K but uses crafty pixel shifting to create a 3840 x 2160-pixel dense image. 

I think many would be hard pressed to distinguish the Cine’s 4K imagery from the native UHD source. It’s rich in fine detail and subtle textural nuance. It looks outstanding with 4K HDR shows streamed from Netflix and Disney+.

Leica Cine 1 menu
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

It’s tempting to attribute much of the Cine 1’s clarity to the quartet of Leica endorsed aspherical lenses, and video processing by the Leica Image Optimization (LIO) labs, together they deliver the most cinematic image possible.

HDR support is wide, with Dolby Vision, HDR10 and HLG all catered for. While projectors can’t offer pixel level control for true HDR, the Cine 1 still manages to present an image with evident specular highlights.

Getting this right is a delicate balancing act, as you don’t want the projector to elevate black levels in the process, but its success can be seen in Rebel Moon: Part 1 A Child of Fire (Dolby Vision, Netflix). The various lamps which light the village retain their warming dynamic glow.

Black level performance is very good, with near shadow detail providing depth. Letterbox bars look reassuringly dark and solid.

There’s a variety of picture presets available: Standard, Cinema Day, Cinema Night, Dynamic, Sports and Filmmaker Mode. When you view Dolby Vision material, you’re presented with the option of Dolby Vision Bright, Dolby Vision Dark and Dolby Vision Custom.  

Standard, Filmmaker mode and Dolby Vision Bright show the projector at its best.

Leica Cine 1 remote control
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

While I did notice rainbow fringing, a recognised characteristic of single chip DLP devices, particularly around areas of high contrast, these errant flashes didn’t pull me out of the presentation. Some viewers may not notice them at all.

Unsurprisingly, the projector is at its best with brightly lit fare. Animation is particularly striking. Puss in boots: The Last Wish (Sky Cinema, UHD) is gloriously colour rich and punchy. It’s here that the Cine 1 reminds me of the impactful performance of an IMAX laser presentation. It’s just phenomenal.

With 50W on tap, the sound system in the Cine 1 is a good deal more strident than you might typically expect to find on a projector. Dolby Atmos compatible, it goes loud and has presence. 

When it comes to mid-range depth and treble detail, it’s more than a match for the average soundbar. Just don’t expect traditional Atmos immersion, or any coherent bass.

Remember you can always bitstream audio out of the Cine 1 to a home cinema amplifier if you want a more immersive experience.

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Should you buy it?

It’s virtually like television

The Leica performs great with bright content, it packs in a tuner and the smart interface is effectively integrated

It’s on the pricey side

The Leica is undeniably a high-end performer but it also comes at huge expense

Final Thoughts

While I concede the Cine 1 is on the pricey side for an ultra-short throw projector, this is genuinely a high-end proposition, both in terms of build quality and image performance; you get a lot of fine hardware for the price.

If you’ve never considered projection as an alternative to a super large screen, then this newcomer may well change your mind. Having both a tuner and a competent smart OS built in makes for a very televisual experience. 

Consequently, this slick UST projector comes highly recommended.

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How we test

We test every projector we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.

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Tested for several days

Tested with real world use


Who makes the Leica Cine 1?

The Cine 1 is the first projector from German lens brand Leica, but it’s also partnered with Hisense, which provides the Vidaa interface for European markets.

Full specs

Size (Dimensions)
Release Date
Model Number
Projector Type
Brightness Lumens
Contrast Ratio
Max Image Size
Types of HDR
Audio (Power output)
Projector Display Technology
Throw Ratio

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