17 Sep 2021 11:15 AM +00:00

Best Mini Projector 2021: Top Picks For All Budgets

If you're after the best mini projector out there, you're in the right place!

Mini projectors present a smaller option in comparison to the traditional hang-from-the-ceiling offerings and they're super portable too which makes them one of the most versatile pieces of kit we've come across.

But, what if you're not sure which one to go for? Well, we've done all the hard work for you by looking at spec sheets, reviews, and all those additional features to find the best ones for the job.

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Whether you're looking for a standout all-rounder in the Anker Nebula Capsule Max or something truly portable like the ViewSonic M1 Mini+, we've got you covered right here, plus our guide to finding the best mini projector for you.

Let's get to it!

Best Mini Projector

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Best Mini Projector - Anker Nebula Capsule Max

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Image Credit: Anker

Manufacturer: Anker | Brightness: 200 ANSI lumens | Resolution: 1280x720 | Battery Life: Up to 4 hours | Weight: 737g

If you're looking for a great all-rounder, then you'll want to check out the Anker Nebula Capsule Max.

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Weighing a mere 737g and with a total height of just 80cm, this particular projector appears to take the meaning of portable to a whole new level.

However, even with such small stature, that doesn't mean it's skimped out on features. As it runs Android 8.1, there looks to be support for plenty of entertainment through the built-in Anker store. You'll find Netflix, Prime Video and the ExpressVPN app, amongst others.

In terms of the actual viewing experience, the Capsule Max looks to be a great bang-for-your-buck option with a 1280x720 resolution that should provide vibrant colours and a 200-lumen brightness.

Battery life of up to four hours should also keep it in check for even some of the longest blockbusters.

Best 4K Mini Projector - LG CineBeam HU80KSW

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Image Credit: LG

Manufacturer: LG | Brightness: 2500 ANSI lumens | Resolution: 3840x2160 | Battery Life: Mains-powered | Weight: 6.7kg

Alright, calling the LG CineBeam HU80KSW a 'mini projector' may be slightly pushing the envelope given it weighs nearly seven kilos, but for sheer power that appears to be behind it, it's hard to argue with the package on offer.

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It provides a 4K resolution (3840x2160) for all your viewing pleasures and the maximum brightness of 2500 ANSI lumens should be plenty bright enough for even the most well-lit rooms.

Thanks to that combo, the picture quality on offer look to be sharp and detailed, and it even boasts some quality integrated speakers.

When seeking the best TV for PS5, console owners often look for 4K resolutions. There are a number of top projectors for gaming on the market that offer this, and the CineBeam HU80KSW's 4K resolution puts it up there as a great choice for this, too.

For portability, despite its weight, you'll find that there's a carry handle and with a total height of 47cm, the CineBeam HU80KSW can be stowed away in a cupboard when not being used.

It looks to be a fantastic all-in-one solution for a rather portable home cinema system.

For US readers, the LG HU80KA offers the same spec sheet and features, but it just comes in black.

Best Portable Mini Projector - ViewSonic M1 Mini+

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Image Credit: Viewsonic

Manufacturer: Viewsonic | Brightness: 120 LED lumens | Resolution: 640x480 | Battery Life: Up to 1.5 hours (built-in battery) | Weight: 318g

At the other end of the scale comes a true pocket-sized champion, the ViewSonic M1 Mini+.

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Even with its total weight being just 318g, this little guy definitely appears to be great for on-the-go viewing thanks to its integrated kick-stand and small stature.

A resolution of 640x480 and a total brightness of 120 LED lumens are good enough for taking out and watching movies with your mates, and integrated apps for Netflix and other services ensure you're not short of content.

The M1 Mini+'s built-in battery should last for up to one and a half hours on its own, but there is also a power bank that can of course increase it.

If decent audio is also a priority, then you'll be pleased to know that this Viewsonic projector also comes with an integrated JBL speaker.

It's also Bluetooth enabled, so you can play your favourite songs through it as well.

Best Budget Mini Projector - Philips Projection NeoPix Easy Projector

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Image Credit: Philips

Manufacturer: Philips | Brightness: 60 LED lumens | Resolution: 800x480 | Battery Life: Mains-powered | Weight: 860g

If you're just looking for a no-frills projector that can view photos and films but has a lot of interesting features, then the Philips Projection NeoPix Easy Projector can go head-to-head with some of our best budget projectors that may be slightly larger.

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A brightness of 60 ANSI lumens may not seem the brightest, but its contrast of 3000:1 appears to be respectable, and a resolution of 800x480 is fine for casual viewing.

However, it's on the front of connectivity where the NeoPix Easy appears to shine most. You'll find there's an integrated media player that works with any media from a USB drive or microSD card through the included slots.

Moreover, if you want to plug in some headphones for solo viewing, then this projector has a 3.5mm jack.

The bulb's durability rating of 20,000 hours, so even with the affordable price tag you can expect this to deliver the good for quite some time too.

Best Smart Mini Projector - Epson EF-12

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Image Credit: Epson

Manufacturer: Epson | Brightness: 1000 ANSI lumens | Resolution: 1920x1080 | Battery Life: Mains-powered | Weight: 1kg

Our final choice, the Epson EF-12, looks to be a prime candidate if you value smart features over anything else, as well as good picture quality, of course.

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Inside this Epson projector, you'll find full Android TV support that allows access to apps such as Amazon Prime Video and Spotify.

On the subject of music, the sound system on offer with tuning from Yamaha is also a major plus point. It looks to provide plenty of dynamics and expression for an in-built speaker set and give good overall audio.

The EF-12 also features Full HD resolution and 1000 ANSI lumens of brightness, which should work in both light and darker settings, and offers plenty of vibrant colours that are also clear.

Frequently Asked Questions About The Best Mini Projectors

What is the difference between ANSI and LED lumens?

The difference between the pair is quite simply a method of measuring. An LED brightness value is going to be between 1.3 and 2.4 times the ANSI measure.

This is because LED brightness looks to incorporate the additional brightness resulting from the perceived brightness of more saturated colours, otherwise known as the HK effect.

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Are mini projectors worth it?

Our list of the best TVs includes TVs up to 77-inches. If you're looking for a solution that allows for the benefits of a big screen without a more expensive television, then mini projectors are worth it.

They offer similar tech to their more full-size brothers but in a smaller package, so they can also be more portable.

Of course, sometimes projectors do not have the best sound quality, so you might want to invest in one of the best speakers for home theatre, or maybe buy one of our top wireless headphones picks instead.

Can you watch Netflix on a mini projector?

Some mini projectors out there have the native ability to watch Netflix such as the Anker Nebula Capsule Max thanks to the fact they can run versions of Android.

Otherwise, if there's the option to connect up a Fire TV stick, as with the Philips Projection NeoPix Easy Projector through an HDMI-in, then you can also watch Netflix this way.

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Is a DLP projector better than an LCD?

This depends on what they're being used for. A lot of the projectors on this list, such as the Epson EF-12 are DLP, or digital light processing projectors, which are typically more reliable, lighter and portable.

On the other hand, whilst LCD projectors don't offer the same levels of portability, they can offer a sharper image and better picture quality.

Read More: Best Projector 2021: Top Picks For Home Theatres, Outdoors, And More