LED Projector is a product category that has always intrigued me. Projectors make the cinematic experience portable, which is the biggest appeal of it. However, these portable projectors are not often very portable. And even if some of them manage to stay compact, it might burn a hole in your pocket. We had the opportunity to test the Portronics Beem 100 LED projector which is claimed to be ultra-portable, and the best option available in the budget.
This product category is primarily led by Taiwanese conglomerate LG Electronics and other players like BenQ, Sony and Epson. Thus making a spot for itself could be challenging for India-based Portronics. The company has priced the Beem 100 portable projector at Rs 9,499. In my review today you will find out if the Beem 100 projector is really portable, competent and priced the way it should be.
Design and Features
The Portronics Beem 100 has a regular design of a portable projector measuring at 186mm x 76mm. Living up to the ‘compact’ tag, you can easily carry it in your backpack as it weighs less than a kilogram. While using at a home, it will not take up a lot of space either. Also, the Beem 100 lets you plug and play your movies on USB drive, SD card, and portable hard drive, so you have a projector minus the wire clutter. The body is built out of rugged plastic which appears shiny and seems pretty durable. It comes in only a black color variant.
The Beem 100 is a 100-lumen projector and produces a 130-inch screen-size diagonally. The resolution is less than HD at 800 x 480 pixels. The projection is fairly sharp and color reproduction is decent. During playback, I noticed the shadows appearing too dark while areas with highlights sometimes appeared to be faded away. The projector lets you choose from available color presets such as Movie, Gaming, Presentation and you can also make you custom color settings as well. Below are few samples of the projection you can expect from the Beem 100.
I primarily used the Beem 100 projector at home to watch movies and courtesy to the white wall in my living room, I did not have to get a screen or projection panel. For someone like me who rarely finds time to go to theatres to watch movies, the Beem 100 projector did a fair job lighting up my hall with big cinematic projection. As I said earlier, the projector is as ‘plug-and-play’ as it gets. The Beem 100 supports all the popular video, image and audio formats. It can play full-HD (1080p) to 2K movies or images, resizing it to 800X480 pixels for projection.
Most of the time I streamed movies directly from my USB 3.0 Seagate Portable Hard Drive. But you can also use the VGA port at the back or the HDMI cable to connect your laptop or smartphone, respectively and have the pleasure of working or presenting on a big screen in a snap. You can also connect CD or DVD players using the two ports or you can connect source devices via the AV cable that comes bundled with the projector.
The path you will take less using the Beem 100 projector is going to be the native speaker system. The audio from the tiny inbuilt speakers is not that great and you would notice the heat cooling fan much louder than the playback sound. Thus, we strongly suggest that you connect external speakers and there is an auxiliary out port on the left-hand side to do so. ALSO READ: Sony KD-65A1 OLED 4K Smart TV Review: Picture as it should be
Further, the Portronics projector is accompanied by a remote control that lets you navigate through various features. The remote uses regular AAA batteries. However, the projector also has some of the control buttons on the top panel. To protect the lenses on the front, there is a dust cap tied with a stretchable string, so you don’t misplace it. You would want to keep that on, for keeping the lens safe. ALSO READ: Insta360 Air review: Ping pong ball-sized camera captures 360-degree photos and videos on the go
The LED on the projector is claimed to last for 30,000 hours which will do a good number of movie playback. The BEEM 100 uses TFT LCD panel for imaging and is serious candidate among other options available in the portable projector category. The projector is strongly recommended for those looking to meet their corporate needs or just want to bring the big screen experience right into their living room at an affordable price.