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The 3M MP180 pocket projector is worth considering if you want to be able to quickly provide impromptu presentations to small groups of people when you are out on your travels. So its ideal for sales and marketing teams as well as those going on business trips abroad. It is also really handy for personal use too.

 

3M_MP180 Pocket projector touch screenIt offers a range of interesting features including: SVGA 800 x 600 resolution; Up to 2 hour battery life (at full brightness throughout); 2” touch screen for controlling projector menus and controls; 4GB onboard memory and support for up to 32GB Micro SDHC cards; viewer software for PowerPoint, Word, Excel, PDF files, photos and a range of video formats too; …And if all that wasn’t enough it also provides Bluetooth connectivity as well as web browsing via wifi.

 

 

So this projector can be used as a stand alone device with your presentations stored onboard or as an ultra portable projector connected to another device. In fact it comes with a generous list of connectors and plugs etc as standard (except an apple ipad/iphone adaptor cable which can be purchased separately).

 

There are a few compromises though, which as long as you are aware of them in advance, means you won’t be disappointed if you do get one:

 

The built in Picsel PowerPoint viewer used with onboard memory on this product doesn’t support PowerPoint animations or slide transitions, so if you want animations you will either have to convert your presentations to video (which we have tried and are happy with the results) or use it like a conventional projector and connect it to a laptop or netbook which can support PowerPoint animations.

 

3M MP180 projectingWith 32 lumens brightness it will never replace a conventional projector for all your business presentation requirements. The image size it can produce is usable but varies greatly depending on the ambient light in the room. In some quick tests in well lit indoor locations we found it to be good for images of around 20-30 inches diagonal size (depending on brightness in room) but with more subdued lighting anything up to the claimed 80 inches image size can be achieved but again it depends on how subdued the lighting is.

 

In our location review video we were surprised to find that it actually produced images of between 50 and 53  inches diagonal without too much trouble in a reception area and in a training room (natural daylight and the venetian blinds closed).

 

Whilst it does provide web browsing capabilities, it doesn’t support Flash (same as the iPad) and its browsing speed is quite slow. So in this area don’t expect it to match the latest tablet devices because it won’t. That being said, a pocket projector with web browsing thrown in is still amazing. For business presentations, we found connecting to the wifi in advance and putting key websites in the favourites list is advisable as the virtual keyboard is a bit fiddly to use with an audience watching.

 

Although bigger than its predecessor, the MPro150, it will still fit in most pockets. This is one of its key features as it means you don’t have to carry it around in your hands everywhere… combine this with its ability to present to small groups of people and its advantages over a tablet device or netbook become clear.

 

The use of the 2” touch screen to control projector menus means you don’t need to let the audience see you navigate around the various files and screens.

 

So after using this product for a while now, we think it is a viable business presentation tool especially useful for impromptu presentations for those on the move, or for those at networking events where it can be stored in a pocket until required.

 

Watch the top video to see our detailed guided tour of the 3M MP180 and the second video to see the MP180 in action.

3M MP180 pocket projector review

(updated 10/08/11)

List price £399 inc VAT

 

If you want to check out some competitive deals on this type of equipment click here to go to the personalprojector.co.uk website, they are really helpful and knowledgeable.  

 

To find out more about the 3M MP180 from the manufacturer click here

 

For a really neat speaker that works well with this projector look at our review of the WoweeOne Classic here (special offer of free carry case available for our readers when they buy one at the Woweeone website using our voucher code).

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