Acer P1265

A large (but quiet) portable projector, with good image quality

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Acer P1265
  • Acer P1265
  • Acer P1265
  • Acer P1265

Pros

  • Good image quality and connectivity, bundled laser pointer, quiet operation

Cons

  • Heavy and large for a portable model

Bottom Line

Acer's P1265 is large and heavy when compared to other portable models, but has impressive brightness and image quality.

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The P1265 from Acer is marketed as a portable projector, but it's definitely on the larger side of portable: It weighs 3kg and is 30cm wide. It has very good image quality for a portable projector, with a high native resolution and great colour reproduction.

It has a surprisingly elegant look, with rounded corners and a simple piano black finish. Its height is manually adjustable using the front foot; the rear rubber feet unscrew to allow for horizontal picture adjustment. The unit has plenty of standard connectors at the rear including a VGA input (which includes a passthrough for connection to another monitor or projector), as well as DVI in, composite and S-Video. External control ports are offered through USB and RS-232. A small mono speaker is built in to the unit, and with two Watts of power is passable for a business presentation in a quiet boardroom.

One shortcoming of the P1265 is its control panel. Instead of taking advantage of a wider area on the top of the body, all the keys are jammed into a small corner, making them difficult to access in a dark room. The remote has plenty of functionality though, with properly sized keys and a built in laser pointer.

Because the projector is not crammed into a tiny case, there's significant room for airflow, leading to less operating noise. Acer says that the P1265 runs at 28dBA in standard mode, and slightly quieter when run in economy.

In standard mode, brightness is rated at 2400 ANSI lumens. Usually DLP (digital light processing) business projectors sacrifice image quality for maximum brightness, but this is not the case with the P1265. When changing to the standardised sRGB mode this model maintains much of its brightness, easily edging out competing portable projectors. Acer has included a feature called ColourBoost in the P1265, which means a wider gamut of colours can be accurately displayed.

When we ran a series of image tests on the P1265 it performed well throughout. Colour reproduction is predictably poor when in presentation mode, though switching to sRGB improved this immensely. When properly set up using the manual focus and zoom, the picture is crisp from across a large room. From left to right across the screen there was a slight variation in the clarity of 12pt text, but this wouldn't be an issue in any presentation situation where text was larger. Simple lines and graphs were rendered accurately.

The projector's native resolution 1024x768pixels, the standard commonly seen in current multimedia projector models. However, the projector is able to downscale inputs as high as 1920x1080 without any problems or noticeable aliasing. The on-screen menu is easy to navigate, with options for setting three picture modes as well as specific colour manipulation. Vertical keystone correction is also included, and is handled automatically although a manual override is possible.

Another feature that the P1265 boasts over other portable projectors is its ability to be quickly shut down, which is again made possible by the larger form factor. Often projectors take several minutes to cool off and fully power down; that isn't the case here. Once the lamp is shut down, the projector powers down without any delay. This could be useful for a situation in which a quick departure after a presentation is necessary.

If you have an image-heavy presentation that needs good colour reproduction or want to watch movies from your PC then the P1265 is a compelling choice.

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