Test Drive: Plus Lightware Series V

By SmallBusinessComputing Staff | Posted October 02, 2002
Wayne N. Kawamoto
Managing Editor, www.smallbusinesscomputing.com

Can an ultra-portable, two-pound LCD projector serve all your presentation needs at the same time that it saves your shoulders? Plus Vision Corp. of America's V-1080, part of the company's PLUS Lightware Series, weighs about two pounds and promises XGA-quality images (1024x768 resolution) at 800 lumens. It may not be the ultimate portable LCD projector, but a step in the right direction.

To start, if you have dreams of carrying just two pounds of projecting equipment on the road, keep dreaming. The projector, at 1.8 (H) x 7 (W) x 5.6" (L), is small and compact-about the size of a medium-size hardback book. And while the V-1080 weighs around two pounds, add all of its accompanying power and video cables, you'll find that you're carrying some four pounds. I did like the projector's carrying cases that resembled tiny bicycle-style panniers-one case for the projector itself and the other for the cables.

Compared to other projectors that I've used, it took more effort to fit the image from the V-1080 into my various test scenarios. I found that I had to prop the projector more often and move it around to accommodate a particular screen. Another negative, while the projector is rated at 800 lumens, I found the output to be somewhat dimmer than other projectors I've used. It seems that compact size and light weight brings some compromises.

The device is easy to use-all connection are made to the rear of the device. The video cables are proprietary, so if you forget cables, you won't be able to connect the device to conventional video equipment. The device comes with a remote control, and Plus backs up its projector with a decent three-year warranty.

Overall, Plus' V-1080 is an impressive bit of engineering-it's among the lightest and smallest LCD projectors yet. On the other hand, with its light weight and compact size, it's not necessarily a top performer. But if you can live with its limitations, you may find that the V-1080 can work for you and be relatively easy to carry along.

Plus Vision Corp., 800.211.9001, www.plus-america.com.
The V-1080 is priced at $3,195.

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