Projector technology has come a long way in a short amount of time. Where they used to be technology only for enthusiasts, now for the cost of a mid-to-high end panel display you can trade in a 50-inch screen for a wall-sized one. ViewSonic’s PJD7822HDL Dual HDMI 1080p Home Entertainment Projector tries to provide for the family consumer with a durable, versatile model that holds its own under a variety of circumstances ranging from casual movies to high-action gaming. Offering full HD 1080p resolution, 3-D compatibility, and a host of other features, this projector packs a whole lot of punch in a small, portable package.
The PJD7822HDL is made to be an easy to set up, easy to use projector. It features two HDMI ports, a S-video port, serial in for a laptop, and even powered USB for use with streaming media sticks like Google’s Chromecast, Roku’s Streaming Stick, or Amazon’s Fire TV Stick – very handy stuff. All of these ports are accessible from the rear, and offer enough space for multiple devices to be plugged in at the same time. The short throw lens includes both an easy-to-use focus and a 1.3x zoom magnification, allowing you to create a fairly large display without setting your projector a mile away from its screen. Operation buttons rest on the top, allowing you to change the keystone of the display without accessing any complicated menus. This means you can adjust the height of your display using the built-in stand and quickly make sure your view is undistorted.
One minor issue is with enter and menu buttons on the projector; the center button is the menu button, while the enter button is off to the side. I kept hitting the center button to confirm a menu option, just to end up backing out of the menu instead. The included remote however, allows for easy menu usage and places the enter button in the center of the arrow keys. The remote also offers quick access to the projector’s DynamicEco mode, which automatically lowers the display brightness and overall power consumption.
Even though the projector’s made for portability and ease, it still offers a phenomenal display. With a 3200 lumen brightness and a high contrast ratio, the PJD7822HDL creates a highly visible picture even in rooms with ambient light. I used the projector in my living room in the middle of the day and was still able to play dark games while making out most visual elements. In dark rooms or at night, the bright display makes for fantastic viewing. The DynamicEco mode is definitely made for dark areas, but offers a 15,000:1 contrast ratio to ensure clear screen visibility. I’m still really impressed with how large a display I could create without rearranging everything; I was able to create a 70+ inch display on my wall with the projector seated on a table no more than 8 feet away from the wall. Whether using my PS4, Xbox 360, or my laptop, colors are vivid and accurate, and motion was crisp and clear.
Unfortunately, without 3-D glasses I was unable to test the 3D effect of the projector, though it does offer multiple 3-D settings including frame sequential, top-bottom, and side-by-side 3-D. And for the hardcore who expect to use the projector for long sessions, know that the unit itself stays cool even after being on for hours. Bulbs are expected to last for between 5,000 and 8,000 hours based on brightness settings.
My only real problem with the PJD7822HDL has to do with its sound. It includes one internal two watt speaker, enough to use in a pinch if you have no other options, but the treble is high and the speakers sound tinny even though they’ll be loud enough for the room to hear whatever is going on. Also, don’t expect to use the onboard audio out jack to handle your sound solutions; it’s a 3.5mm mono audio jack. Not only was I disappointed with the lack of stereo, but I also lost a lot of the bass and depth from the sound source when I used it. This was tolerable while watching shows on Netflix and Hulu, but I really felt like I was missing out while playing games or watching high-def movies. Most home theater setups would use some sort of external speakers regardless, but I still would have appreciated a little more attention to the on-board audio.
ViewSonic’s PJD7822HDL Dual HDMI 1080p Home Entertainment Projector does a great job compacting a fantastic visual package into a neat little box. I would’ve really loved to have a better audio experience, but I wasn’t expecting miracles with a projector – any projector – and even mediocre sound doesn’t detract from the bright, detailed, crisp screen this box is made to provide. With its multiple features, highly-functional short throw lens, and great high-definition picture quality that looks great at any size ViewSonic has definitely crafted a solid all-around projector ready for a variety of uses uses at home, in the office, or anywhere else.