The Optoma PK301 scores quite highly with its file compatibility, though, being able to handle Microsoft PowerPoint (.ppt, pptx), various movie formats (.avi, .mov, .mp4, 3gp), a selection of audio formats (aac, mp3, pcm, adpcm, wma, ogg) and JPEG/BMP photo files. DivX and maybe even .doc support might have been nice too, but most users will be able to make do using the file formats we’ve listed.
Optoma PL301 Features
The Optoma PK301 ’s innards are built around a typical DLP Pico projection system, serving up a native WVGA resolution (800x480p) and a claimed brightness of 50 Lumens, when running off the built in battery, or an impressive-sounding 100 Lumens when it’s plugged into the mains. The 3M MP220 by comparison delivered 65 Lumens, and offers a similar WVGA native pixel count.
Continuing the comparisons, the 3M MP220 is broadly similar with its connectivity, but its battery lasts for around two hours compared with 1.5 hours for the PK301 . However, the Optoma PK301 is cheaper than the MP220 by around £50, and handily ships with a ‘credit card’ remote control while you have to pay extra for a remote for the 3M offering.
The Optoma PK301 ‘s spec sheet boldly claims that it can produce a 150-inch image in a dark room. This is a huge picture to come from such a tiny projector – but unfortunately in our opinion it’s not a very realistic claim from Optoma. For while we guess the projector will, technically, produce a picture that’s 150-inches across, you’ll struggle to see much content in it thanks to how little brightness is left in the image once it’s been pushed so far.
A much more credible ‘maximum’ image size for the Optoma PK301 based on our tests would be around 60-65-inches in a darkened room. In a reasonably bright room we’d say you’re looking at more like 40-45inches. And if you want the picture to look really bright and punchy, you should probably shave another 10-inches off both those maximum sizes.
The odd thing about the Optoma PK301 ’s pictures is that even with the power lead attached, its pictures don’t look as bright and dynamic as those of the supposedly less powerful 3M MP220. As well as meaning that images don’t leap off the screen at you as much, this slight lack of brightness also results in bright parts of the picture looking a bit grey and listless instead of white and punchy.
The same issue additionally means there’s not so great a sense of range and vibrancy to the PK301 ’s colours. Skin tones also look a bit plasticky and monotone at times.
Unlike other sites, we thoroughly test every product we review. We use industry standard tests in order to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever accept money to review a product. Tell us what you think - send your emails to the Editor.