Like most other gadgets, projectors too have been becoming compact over the past few years. But the smallest of the lot, the so-called Pico projectors, are not as bright as the best projectors. They usually have a brightness of around 100 Lumens, which means you need a really dark room to get an image that is good enough. However, a new breed of devices now aims to pack portability along with bright bulbs. Of course, these projectors are not as small as the hand-held projectors — they just can’t be with the brighter lamps. But they pack a lot more features than the average Pico. The Acer K135 LED projector is one such, and we put it to the test.
Despite its size, which is not much larger than a Discman, the K135 packs a bright 500 Lumens lamp. It weighs just 435 grams, which makes it very portable. The power button is on top, just beside a menu console surrounded by four directional buttons. There is a small focus toggle towards the front. The device has an HDMI input as well as a USB port. Since a lot of people will be using this on the move, it can also project from a micro-SD card.
The K135 is easy to set up and run, especially if you have an HDMI source. The USB port would obviously be the best bet when you are on the move. But this works better with documents and photographs. The device could not recognise a whole lot of video formats. However, it can open most common document formats like .doc and .pdf. There is also a Wi-Fi but we just couldn’t go anywhere with it. Selecting the setup in that section kept taking us back to the menu as we did not have the UBS Wi-Fi adapter that makes this work.
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The 500 Lumens lamp is pretty good for a projector this size. So you can use this to beam important presentations when in a hotel room a day before a meeting. Plus, for these kinds of scenarios you have the option of selecting the wall colour for a clearer image. There is a 2w speaker which you can use when you have no other options, only when you have no other option.
The image quality is really good and we suggest you run this mostly in HD. You can go Full HD from the source, but you will need at least eight feet space to make good use of it. One grouse is the fact that this does not have short-throw, which is almost an industry standard in projectors this size. That would have added real value. Now, you need at least three feet space to get a small, but decent, image. The remote is also a bit of a head ache as you need to remember to click the right button to select, which is not natural at all. You end up clicking the menu button to select and this just restarts the entire process.
Should you buy it: Buy this if you are looking for portability as a key factor and have a laptop with an HDMI port to run this effectively. I wouldn’t suggest this as home theatre option as there are better projectors from Acer itself which are more compatible for entertainment use.