March 23, 2006
 

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Posted: 06.30.05

Is There Anything It Canít Do?

Youíre a rising professional who needs a stunning visual presentation to close the big account. Youíre a mobile worker with the need to display the same PowerPoint slideshow in different locations and from different (and possibly dissimilar) computers throughout the same day. Youíre a drunken college student who decides itís a brilliant idea to project giant adult videos onto the face of the building across the street at 3:45 a.m. on a Saturday night. The BenQ PB2240 Digital Mobile Projector is for you.
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By Adam Brickman




The latest digital projection offering from BenQ is a sleek and simple solution for mobile projecting. Weighing just over four pounds, and with no necessary accompanying software, the device plugs easily into a Mac or PC via either VGA or S-Video cable, and will immediately beam the desktop image onto the nearest wall or projector screen with a maximum resolution of 1280 by 1024. A simple configuration on the computer’s control panel allows the user to employ a two-screen desktop, enabling word processing and other work while a video or slideshow plays on the projector screen.

The projector itself measures only 9.4 by 3.4 by 7.1 inches, and a protective carrying case comes standard. It also requires minimal setup time; once out of the case, simply plug into a power outlet and attach to the desired computer via one of several supported input modes (which unfortunately, does not include USB). Once the device is turned on, it automatically adjusts for the received content. Two simple focusing mechanisms on the unit enlarge the image and tighten resolution. After very little adjustment, you are staring at a crystal clear image or seamless video.

If there are any negatives, they are few. The S-Video cable was much more difficult to use, and ultimately worked much less consistently than the VGA, with which images appeared without hesitation. The cords included with the unit (both for power and for input) are relatively short and can force the projector to be anchored fairly close to both the wall and to the attached computer. There is no battery powering option for the unit; an outlet must be nearby. Also, if left on for an extended period, the projector gets very hot; space around the unit is required for ventilation. The device retails between $1,800 and $2,995.

These detractions, however, pale in comparison to the projector’s upside. BenQ also includes a memory key, so that presentations can be stored and played without lugging an additional laptop, and a remote, so slides can be changed from across the boardroom. Whether it be a slideshow, or a video of your company’s newest product, the BenQ PB2240 should satisfy any business requirements. And if you’re in the mood to create a personal movie theater, play vastly oversized video games, watch large-scale iTunes visualizations or simply to provide the neighbors with some bright, unsolicited entertainment, I can give you my personal guarantee, it’ll work for that, too.
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