Summer is here and I’ve always wanted a projector for the backyard. Knowing that I didn’t need crystal clear 4k quality, a budget projector seemed the best way to go. For around 100 dollars, you get a projector that has plenty of inputs and whose picture quality is far better than I expected. Thanks to Mileagea, I know have the perfect projector for my backyard get togethers. They sent us one of their latest projectors to check out.
Keep in mind, this projector (Model: AC46) is less than $100 on Amazon. If i was looking at a projector 3 times the price, I wouldn’t be a lenient.
Operation of the projector is fairly easy. Upon powering it up, you are brought to a menu where you can decide which type of files you’d like open: movies, music, pictures of text. Unfortunately, due to the quality of this projector, I wouldn’t even bother trying to use the text feature. After hooking up my laptop to the projector via HDMI, I could already see that reading any text would certainly be taxing on the eyes. Even when playing the Playstation Vita TV through HDMI, the picture quality was decent, but there was still a slight softness to it, making my eyes feel a little tired after some time..
Keeping with the HDMI, the Mileagea projector is practically plug in play. You just plug in your devices via the built in HDMI, AV, PC, SD Card or USB ports, then make your selection via the controls on the projector or the included controller. The remote control is nothing fancy. It’s build quality is pretty sub-par, but gets the job done. Once you’ve selected your input method, you’re on your way.
In addition to hooking up my PSTV and laptop, I was also able to hook up some old school video games through the AV cables. The projector was perfect for these older style games, as they already had some of crudeness to them graphical wise. This is ok thought, It will still make some excellent game nights out in the back yard.
Unlike some of the cheaper sub $100 projectors I’ve seen in the past, the Mieagea projector uses an LED light source. This is the first time I’ve seen this. The LEDs give off enough light in a dark or dimly lit room, but don’t expect to see it in a brighter area. Again, keeping in mind this is a $100 projector I am ok with this. I got this with the intent of doing outdoor movie and game nights, and have no intentions of using it during the day.
Cheaper projectors also have the tendency of only being able to project a clear picture so far. The Mileagea projector was able to cast a pretty decent image of about 100 inches diagonally!! I didn’t think it was really going to do that, but it did. The zoom and focus takes a little work, and you might still get a slightly soft image, but it’s still a decent picture all things considered. I would say the picture range is about 32 inches to 100. Anything outside that range makes it hard to focus a clear image.
I put the projector to the test, by having my own little movie night. Playing movies is easy. You can easily hook up a DVD player through HDMI or AV cables; or you can load movies through the USB port. I was able to test a few movies using an external hard drive as well as a thumb drive. The projector was able to recognize and play all of the different files.
The built in speakers however, aren’t the best. They have no real dynamic range. They can get somewhat loud, but I would strongly suggest picking up a nice pair of computer speakers and using the built in headphone jack. This will help give you a good quality sound to make your make-shift theater experience the best it can be. You will also need good speakers to overpower the sound of the projector. The built in fan is pretty loud and kicks on pretty much right after power up, so you will want to tune that out.
While the Mileagea projector also transmits its own wi-fi signal so you can share photos and videos from your phone directly to the big screen, I had a little bit of a hard time connecting to the projector. While it’s a cool feature; it seems just a little gimmicky to me. I would say if you are planning on watching full length movies, it would be best to hook up your device directly to the projector.
I had a great time testing out the Mileagea projector and cannot wait to have family and friends over for a backyard movie and s’mores night.