Projectors aren’t known for being convenient or economical, especially if you plan to convert an entire room into a home theater. There’s so much you need to do – paint the walls black, buy a huge screen, set up an audio system, and more!
However, you can eliminate much of this hassle by simply getting your hands on a mini-projector. Mini projectors combine a TV’s big-screen appeal with a tablet or laptop’s portable convenience. Despite the small size, the quality and performance remain top-notch. If this sounds like what you’re looking for, keep reading for our best mini projectors list below.
The Top Mini Projectors for Indoor and Outdoor Use
You can use a mini projector for fun and work. Be it a movie night, or showing presentations. The portability advantage lets you project your video on the go. Here’s a list of the ten best mini projectors you’ll find on the market today:
1. Anker Nebula Mars II Pro Video Projector
The Nebula Mars II is a great mini projector for casual viewing.
It uses Anker’s DLP IntelliBright technology and has a 1280×720 resolution. The company has boosted its image brightness to 500 ANS lumens as well. In fact, the bright and accurate picture quality is one of its best features. The powerful in-built speaker with sharp audio is another plus.
The mini projector has automatic focus and keystone. These optimize the projection according to the device’s throw distance and angle. It also has Android 7.1, built in, and for those apps that still support this now-aging version of Android, you can stream directly from the projector itself. For anything else, you’ll want to consider plugging in a FireTV or similar streaming device.
The intuitive mobile remote app makes the Nebula Mars II Pro one of the simplest projectors to use. The three-hour battery life is enough to watch your favorite movie without any interruptions. Even navigating through the Android interface is easy using the well-designed remote. You also get several connection options with the device, including Blutooth, Wifi, and Miracast (for screen mirroring).
Talking about cons, this may not be suitable for users used to a 1080p resolution because of the 720 resolution. We would’ve also appreciated the option to install the Play Store app as well.
2. Vankyo Leisure 3 Mini Projector
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly yet versatile projector, the Vankyo Leisure 3 could be your best bet.
It has a 1920×1080 resolution that delivers a crystal-clear image. It can also project a picture up to 170 inches across. The ideal 6.5 feet placement on the projection surface makes it suitable for smaller rooms.
The projection quality, considering its small build, is excellent. The color and contrast are great, but you’ll have to keep the room dark – very dark. As a result, this device is better suited for home entertainment. We would recommend you to look for other options if you want a projector for office use.
The mini projector uses HDMI and USB ports to play content. So, while you won’t find a Wi-Fi connection, it does have a plug-and-play setup. This makes it easier to attach external devices.
One of the best features of the Vankyo Leisure 3 has to be its portable design. It weighs less than three pounds and comes with its own carrying case. So moving the device will never be an issue.
What didn’t work for us were the 2W internal speakers. The audio quality is a little harsh, often blending in with the fan noise. You would do well to connect the device to a stereo system. Or, you can connect headphones for personal use via the built-in headphone port.
The Vankyo Leisure 3 offers several video presets, along with the choice to customize your own preferences. Ultimately, the Vankyo Leisure 3 is a worthy buy that can be a lot of fun to use. Just don’t expect it to do more than the price and category suggest.
3. Kodak Ultra Mini Portable Projector
The Kodak Ultra Mini sets high standards in design and performance.
This DLP projector is crafted with minimalism in mind. Not only is it light, but it’s also super compact. You can easily fit it in your briefcase, handbag, or even back pocket!
It uses Kodak’s advanced DLP Optimal Engine to deliver 1080p HD image resolution. The resulting image is is above average in terms of color accuracy and clarity. The superior LED brightness works best in dimly-lit and dark rooms.
It should be noted that portability comes with trade-offs. Specifically, the projector does not get as bright as its larger competitors. As a result, we recommend that you consider this projector if you plan to use it at home or for small group presentations. The 2W speaker isn’t very powerful, either. For better audio, you’ll have to connect the device to a pair of earphones or external speakers.
The Kodak Ultra Mini is an affordable projector with minimal rainbow effect. And can display content from a range of sources – wireless or wired. The battery lasts two-hours and is rechargeable.
We particularly like the uncomplicated interface. The buttons, menu screens, and connection ports have a plug-and-play design. Its compatibility with USB drives lets you view photos or videos.
4. DBPOWER Upgraded Mini Projector
The DBPOWER Upgraded Mini provides an affordable price coupled with a nice design. It’s capable of delivering a 176-inch display for an immersive cinematic experience.
There’s no need to worry if your wall is too small for the 176-inch display. You can also reduce the screen size to as little as 32 inches as well.
Movies other video content can be enjoyed at full 1080p resolution. Moreover, the projector has advanced fan cooling technology. This can be helpful for ensuring quieter and more reliable operation.
DBPower has worked hard on improving the bulb design. Since it uses less energy, the projector is highly energy-efficient. Plus, you can place it at a distance of 1.8-2.0m for a better and brighter projection.
The integrated Wi-Fi connection also eliminates the use of any wires whatsoever.
You can wirelessly play content from any device you own. You can connect the projector to laptops, smartphones, or USB drives. Even DVD players and tablets are compatible with the device.
With 50,000 hours of lamp life, the DBPOWER Upgraded Mini gives you plenty of hours of play time before worrying about lamp replacement. Not only is it 70 percent brighter, but the device is also 50 percent sharper when compared to similar models.
5. LG PH550 CineBeam LED Projector
The LG PH550 CineBeam LED Projector offers a wealth of connection options. But that is not the only reason you should consider this mini-projector.
In addition to the connection options, the mini projector is also lightweight and portable. Even the video and data image quality is sharp and vivid. It’s also fitted with a built-in TV tuner. This built-in TV tuner, in our opinion, is also its best feature. You can connect the TV tuner to an antenna via a coaxial plug to tune-in to local broadcasts in your area.
The LG PH550 is an LED-based DLP projector with a 1280×720 resolution. It also has a rated brightness of 550 lumens. But yes, we would have preferred a higher resolution considering the competition often sports full 1080p.
Speaking of downsides, this mini-projector lacks a zoom feature, meaning that your ability to precicesly fit a screen will be more limited than its competitors.
Additionally, it has two 1-watt speakers, making the built-in audio effectively useless for anything other than office presentations. If you want to increase the audio quality and volume, you’ll have to connect external speakers through the audio-out jack. A wireless connection through a Bluetooth speaker is also possible.
The plethora of connection ports starts with an MHL-enabled HDMI port. The other options include a port for a USB thumb drive and an AV-in.
The AV-in can be used for a composite audio-video connection source. However, you’ll still have to use a cable, audio-out, VGA, and a TV coaxial connector.
6. Topvision Mini Projector
You can convert your home into a home cinema with the Topvision Mini Projector. All you need to do this is a smartphone, HDMI cord, or laptop, and your movies will transform into big-screen size.
The projector has durable aluminum construction, which helps to prevent overheating issues for better performance. The resin material of the lens is swapped for tempered glass, adding more thermal stability and visual clarity. Hence, this portable projector can resist high temperatures and display clearer images.
It has 2400 lumens of brightness for delivering a crisp and clear picture and video quality. Although we would recommend a 3-meter distance, the device can display images from 1.5-5.2 meters as well. The contrast ratio stands at 2000:1 and 16:10.
Its lamp life is rated at more than 50,000 hours. So you can expect many years of superb home theater experience without the hassle of changing the lamp.
A ±15 keystone correction button on the top of the monitor limits image distortion and presents the image at just the right angle. The projector also has adjustments for focus ring, along with other settings.
7. Elephas W90 Mini Movie Projector
The Elephas W90 is one of the best mini-projectors under $100.
We‘re aware that Elephas isn’t as well-known as the other brands in the market. This is why it’s surprising to see the device exceed other brands in terms of quality and versatility.
At its best quality, the Elephas W90 can project a 120-inch image. You can increase it up to 236 inches if needed, but keep in mind that image clarity will be reduce when you extend the projection.
Despite the small size and budget price, this projector can do almost everything. You can play games on a console, or watch your favorite series by attaching a streaming stick. Even mirroring content from your laptop is possible.
Its LED lamp can deliver up to 5000 lumens of brightness and has a 3000:1 contrast ratio. These features help to ensure clear and sharp media, with high color accuracy. The device is also fitted with an upgraded cooling system and built-in speakers.
An external speaker can also be connected to the mini projector’s 3.5mm audio input for louder audio.
We did find one downside of the Elephas W90 – it lacks an internal battery. You’ll have to plug the mini projector into a power source to use it.
8. ViewSonic M1 Portable Projector
At first glance, the ViewSonic M1 Portable Projector looks very different from the other models on the market.
It has its own built-in stand that lets you move the device upwards or downwards. Plus, it can be placed almost anywhere in the room and still deliver great picture quality.
The projector is purposely designed to be small for convenience and portability. You can place it in any room or carry it when needed. Still, the projector’s durability leaves us wanting for more. Past customers have also commented on the fragility of the device.
However, the biggest downside of this projector is likely its WVGA, 854x480p resolution. This is going to make the projector a poor fit for movies, and much more appropriate for presentations.
The built-in dual Harman Kardon speakers enhance the audio, so it fills the whole room. At nearly six hours, the built-in battery is more than decent. You can also charge your mobile phone through the USB Type-C port after plugging in the power adapter.
The plug-and-play feature is another benefit, making device setup and control very easy.
It has an integrated microSD slot and a 16GB internal memory. This is more than enough to ensure there is no need for external connections. You can store any movie or series you love watching directly in the projector.
9. Hompow Mini Projector
The Hompow Mini Projector is one of the best mini-projectors on Amazon. It works well with smartphones, but can also be used with other devices. Some of these include a DVD, TV, PS4, USB stick, PC, to name a few.
Hompow’s Mini Projector has also won Amazon‘s Choice badge due to its higher sales volume and a 4.5-star rating.
The device projects 3600 lumens and has a 1080p HD display, and has a 2000:1 contrast ratio. In fact, it’s high resolution is one of the best features, with multiple customers loving the large-TV video quality.
However, keep in mind that the movie projector doesn’t display copyrighted content. So you cannot watch Hulu, Amazon Prime, or Netflix on it.
The lamp lifetime is 50,000 hours, which considering the small size, is impressive. To be precise, you can use your portable home theater for nearly 30 years.
It has Homepow’s upgraded noise reduction tech that allows you to concentrate on your video. Furthermore, you get 50-176 inches HD screen, making it suitable for watching movies or playing games – whatever you prefer. The keystone correction feature enhances the projection quality further.
10. Epson PowerLite 1795F 3LCD Projector
The Epson PowerLite 1795F 3LCD Projector is a thin and lightweight device that offers a bright, 1080p resolution. It has a rated brightness of 3200 lumens and uses Epson’s 3LCD technology.
It offers a wide range of connectivity options, spoiling you for choice. In addition to VGA and HDMI, you have RCA video and audio-in ports. The USB Type-B port and USB Type-A port can be used for direct computer connections and USB thumb drive presentation, respectively.
The projection color is well saturated and bright. Using the advanced LCD tech, its color brightness and white brightness are appropriately balanced as well.
The PowerLite 1795F has a long rated lamp life of up to 7000 hours in Eco mode. But when you use it in normal mode, the lifetime decreases to 4000 hours – something you should keep in mind.
Considering this is a data projector, the video quality is certainly impressive. The audio from the one-watt speaker, however, is faint. You can use the audio-in port for playing audio from a video source over the speaker. But connecting external speakers isn’t possible due to the absence of an audio-out port.
Some people don’t mind streaming content directly from their phone or laptop. But there’s no doubt that watching your favorite show or movie with your friends as it covers your whole wall is another experience altogether.
Buying a portable projector will forever change the way you conduct presentations. Even gamers can enjoy a larger and better video and audio.
The top ten mini-projectors listed above have been chosen very carefully. Our metrics include resolution, audio, budget, and functionality to ensure you get a high-quality device.
Don’t forget to make a note of the resolution or maximum screen size. And of course, don’t forget your budget constraints!