New pocket projectors from 3M and Vivitek

Breaking news in the pocket projector world! Projector People now sells 3D-ready HD pocket projectors and pocket projectors with built-in camcorders.

Vivitek Qumi pico projector

vivitek Qumi

Exhibit A: the 300-lumen Vivitek Qumi. We first met this little bad guy at CES 2011. The Vivitek Qumi is the world’s first 3D-ready, HD pocket projector. It features native 720p resolution, built-in 1W speakers and a LED light source that lasts up to 30,000 hours. Check out our video of the Qumi in action »

The Vivitek Qumi sells for $499 and will ship in June. It is available in white or black. Pre-order yours now»

3M CP40 pico projector

3M CP40

Exhibit B is the 14-lumen 3M CP40. This pico projector features a built-in camcorder capable of shooting 720p video. Now you can shoot and share with just the push of a button. No more worrying about cords or hooking up to an external storage device.

The 3M CP40 is in stock now and costs $299. Get your own 3M CP40»

Connectivity of the Vivitek Qumi and 3M CP40

Both projectors can hook up to a variety of inputs, including your iPad or iPhone.

High quality pocket projectors in cell phones? We think not.

projector phones
At present, phones will have to be this big again to accommodate a high-quality projector

Pico projectors are showing up everywhere. Cell phone concepts. Cameras. Even alarm clocks!

People ask us: aren’t you guys worried this will hurt your business?

Nah. As the kids in my hometown say, “we ain’t skerred.”

See, the projectors integrated into many gadgets and gadget concepts on the market today are low-lumen and low-resolution. They’re fine if you want to beam a picture from your digital camera on the wall. But if you want to really see the details in your photographic masterpiece, you’ll need a better, brighter projector.

That’s where we come in.

The portable projectors coming out in the next few months have about 30 times the brightness of the ones built into cameras and cell phone concepts. They also display content in HD and are capable of projecting bigger images.

The projectors integrated into cameras are gimmicks, which isn’t an insult. Heck, if we have to choose between two similar-priced cameras, we’ll pick the one with the built-in projector. Why not, right?

But to really show off the pics we just snapped, we’ll reach for a brighter HD pocket projector, like the new Vivitek Qumi or the LG HW300T, (both coming soon!) Then, after we view our photos, we’ll use the projector’s built-in HD tuner to watch some TV. And then we’ll probably take a nap.

What about the iPhone 5 pico projector rumors?

For now, they’re just rumors.

Digitimes.com reports that smartphone-size pico projector modules are unlikely to start mass shipping for a while now. They’re too dim, too low-res and draw too much power.

There will be about one million devices with pico projectors shipped worldwide in 2011, but prices will still remain unfriendly to consumers. Therefore, vendors are launching these devices to enhance their brand names through displaying the latest technologies and innovation; they do not really expect to ship large volumes…it would still take several years before the module’s price can drop to a friendlier level. – Digitimes.

And by the time these modules hit “friendlier” prices, the portable projectors on the market will be beyond awesome. In the past year alone, we’ve seen an increase in lumens, resolutions and extra features. No doubt, the future of pocket projectors is even brighter! (Pun intended.)

Why you want the pocket projectors that debuted at CES 2011

We have three words to describe the pocket projectors that debuted last week at CES 2011:

O. M. G.

Gone are the low-lumen, low-resolution pocket projectors of yesteryear. The next crop of picos displays in HD (and 3D!) and are bright enough to use in low ambient light.

They connect to your iPad, handle HDMI input and include built-in speakers. Pretty soon, they’ll even output in 1080p HD.

Without further ado….

Cool pocket projectors introduced at CES 2011

  1. Vivitek Qumi

    Why you want it: Vivitek’s first pico projector, the 300-lumen Qumi, could potentially set the standard for the next wave of portable projectors. With a native WXGA (1280×800) resolution and mini-HDMI input, the Qumi can output in HD. It’s also 3D-ready and includes a built-in 1W speaker.

    The 1.6-pound Qumi is versatile and portable enough for work and play. It easily connects with the latest digital cameras, laptops, smart phones and tablets. We saw this projector in action and were very impressed.

    In the video below, watch Rick Nguyen of Vivitek demonstrate the compatibility functions of the Qumi while he talks about the future of the pico chipset.

    The Qumi has a 2500:1 contrast ratio and measures 6.3″(w) x 1.2″(h) x 3.9″(d). It is expected to hit the streets in May for $499.

  2. LG HW300T

    Why you want it: LG Electronics’ HW300T LED projector is the first portable projector to incorporate the DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance) technology, allowing you to wirelessly transfer stored digital content from devices such as PCs and Blu-ray players.

    This little projector also has a built-in ATSC Tuner, which enables you to watch HD Broadcast signals without the need for a separate external content source. It also provides access to online content such as Accuweather, Twitter and Facebook.

    The 250-lumen HW300T has 1200 x 800 WXGA resolution, contrast ratio of 2,000:1 and a life expectancy of 30,000 hours. Pricing and availability were not released.

HD chip sets in picos? Built-in tuners? DLNA access? Are you guys as excited as we are?

Optoma PK301, the newest pocket projector!

Pocket projectors are awesome. They’re just so little, and cute and ….. okay, I’ll stop.

Optoma PK301

Seriously, we’re always excited to see the latest entries in this product line. Pocket projectors are getting smaller and brighter, and image quality is on the rise.

Take the latest Optoma pocket projector, the PK301. At 50 lumens, this is the brightest pocket projector we carry, and weighing in at a mere 0.8 ounces, it’s also the lightest.

Optoma PK301 Pico Features

  • Truly portable – palm-sized, lightweight, and rechargeable
  • Built-in media player allows you to project images, videos or document directly from the removable storage device
  • MicroSD card slot allows for memory expansion up to 16 GB
  • Project large widescreen images of up to 120” diagonal
  • 2,000:1 Contrast Ratio
  • LED light source lasts over 20,000 hours while producing excellent color
  • Full assortment of I/O ports, including USB, VGA, HDMI and video, allow for easy connection to most analog or digital devices

Check out our full selection of pico projectors here»

Projectors in Action: Mates of State music video

In their latest music video, indie band Mates of State grabbed a 3M MPro150 pocket projector and skipped around Manhattan, beaming images on unsuspecting passers-by. Surprisingly, no one was harmed during the filming of the video.

In addition to being a feel-good video, the band shows the amazing portability and flexibility of the 3M MPro150. It’s one of the few pocket projectors with internal storage. If the band had used another projector, they might have had to attach an iPod or other external device to store their video.

Watch Mates of State’s “True Love Will Find You in the End” video below.