Pico vs portable: Which one to choose?

Pico vs portable: Which one to choose?
Pico vs portable: Which one to choose?
For some people, portability just isn't a factor when buying a projector. But for those that require more flexibility from their device in terms of where and how it's used, it's worth thinking carefully about just how portable you need your projector to be.

Panasonic recently introduced the PT-RQ13K to the market – the world's lightest three-chip DLP laser projector with 4K resolution. But this world class device weighs in at 45kg, making it a bit tricky to transport between classrooms or offices once installed.

If you're really looking for a device that can be moved around you need to be considering LED-based portable projectors or even pico projectors.

Optoma's projectors are renowned for their quality but they also offer some excellent options when it comes to portability. The ML1500, for example, is an excellent projector but still weighs in at just 1.4kg and boasts an impressive 1,500 lumens of brightness. It operates on LED display technology and delivers WXGA native resolution.

The Ricoh PJX2240 is another portable projector that comes highly recommended by us at ProjectorPoint. The device is a little heavier at 2.6kg but it is still compact with a footprint only just larger than an A4 piece of paper. It will require a power outlet, but for this you get access to an impressive 3,000 lumens of brightness, making it perhaps more useful for those who can't predict the light levels in the rooms they'll be presenting in.

But while 1.4kg is exceptionally light, it's not quite in the realms of the pico projector. Pico projectors are typically below 0.6kg in weight and can be run from a battery power supply. They also use an LED light source to keep weight and size down and help the projector last longer without the need for new parts or an external power source.

Connectivity on a pico projector is also a bit different. In many cases they're designed with a USB input or an SD memory card reader to enable people to use them without transporting a whole laptop around to feed in the presentation, instead meaning they can simply use a USB stick or memory card on the go.

A lot of people think that because of the limited connectivity options and scaled down nature of pico projectors they're only really designed for business presentations. However, the developments in technology mean that they still display an excellent picture and are suitable for watching films from a USB stick for example.

Portable projectors are bigger and still a little heavier even though there isn't that much in it. But they do tend to deliver a better picture than a pico projector. If you can't control the lighting in the different locations in which you might be presenting, and the image quality is of utmost importance, a portable projector is the best way to go. But for those looking for something fun and flexible that could be used in any room in their house or taken round to a friend's as and when, the flexibility of the pico projector wins out.

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