The ViewSonic M1 is a pocket projector boasting exceptional audio quality, with a fairly low price of just $337. As with most small pocket and pico projectors, the M1 has limited options and has its tradeoffs in favor of audio quality and portability.
This ViewSonic projector offers an onboard media player with built-in 16GB storage. The Harman Kardon speakers offer outstanding audio quality for such a small projector, and the internal battery offers up to 6 hours of run-time depending on use. I tested the battery at full power and found the battery lasted just over three hours – not bad at all! The claim is obviously based on running the projector in battery saving mode.
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Pocket projectors are not all that bright, generally speaking. The M1 did not meet its claim of 250 lumens, coming in at 153 lumens in its brightest mode. This precludes the M1 from most day-time usage, unless ambient light can be completely shut out. With WVGA resolution (854 x 480), this is not an HD projector. If you aren’t looking for that HD quality, you will not be disappointed in video image quality, whether watching movies, TV shows, sports or gaming, and can expect the projector to have the quality of a DVD.
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The ViewSonic M1 is capable of projecting images as small as 24” diagonally, all the way up to 100” diagonally. All the photos in this review were taken at a throw distance of 5 feet, which produced an image of 71” diagonal. Images were decently sharp for the resolution, but came out of focus quickly, which required I readjust focus about 2/3 through The Greatest Showman, and multiple times while gaming.
While this projector makes a decent home entertainment projector and a good choice for the student living in a college dorm or the gamer on-the-go, text is difficult to read and I don’t believe it makes a good choice for presentations.