Handy mobile projector

Sony’s new portable MP-CD1 projector is about the size of a power bank.
Sony’s new portable MP-CD1 projector is about the size of a power bank.

There are many ways a presentation can go wrong. I remember well the sinking feeling when the projector screen shows "no signal input" when connected to the laptop.

To minimise technical mishaps, it may be worthwhile to have your own mobile projector, such as Sony's new pocket-sized MP-CD1.

This portable projector is about the size of a power bank and its rectangular aluminium chassis feels sleek and solid. It has a 5,000mAh battery that is said to last up to two hours, which gives you the freedom to set up a meeting anywhere.

It is simple to use. Switch it on and connect it to a notebook with the included HDMI cable. It should be up and running in seconds. I also manage to display my smartphone screen with the projector using a separate USB-C to HDMI dongle (not included in the package).

A slider at the side lets you adjust the focus while its auto keystone correction feature will fix image distortion arising from the angle of the projector, to maintain a rectangular shape for the image. A socket for a standard tripod - which is not included - is at the bottom.

The package includes a USB-C cable for charging via the projector's USB Type-C port, but not a charger. There is also a micro-USB to USB-C adapter if you have only a micro-USB charger.

Other additions include a 3.5mm audio jack and a USB Type-A port, which turns the projector into a power bank for other mobile devices.

  • SPECS

    PRICE: $599

    BRIGHTNESS: 105 ANSI lumens

    OUTPUT RESOLUTION: 854 x 480 pixels

    CONTRAST RATIO: 400:1

    PROJECTED IMAGE SIZE: Up to 120 inches at 3.45m

    WEIGHT: 280g

    RATING

    FEATURES: 4/5

    DESIGN: 4/5

    PERFORMANCE: 4/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 3/5

    OVERALL: 4/5

This port can also power a streaming dongle such as a Google Chromecast. While this means you can use the projector to watch streaming videos, you should expect the battery to deplete faster.

It is a short-throw projector, requiring a distance of 1.15m to the wall to display a 40-inch screen. The screen size goes up to 120 inches at 3.45m. Images look good, but text can appear pixelated.

The speaker is fairly soft and this is not helped by the projector's cooling fan, which is loud enough to drown out the dialogue in movies.

At $599, the Sony MP-CD1 is priced competitively. The Canon Rayo S1 mobile projector, which has similar specifications, costs the same.

•Verdict: This portable projector offers good image quality and also doubles as a power bank.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 18, 2018, with the headline 'Handy mobile projector'. Print Edition | Subscribe