The vast majority of projectors can't rival televisions in resolution, but LG's new battery-powered LED devices have TVs beat on another point — portability. Where most projectors need to be installed at the back of a room, LG's new PH450U is an ultra-short throw (UST) projector, capable of projecting images from distances of just 33 centimeters (13 inches). Its small size and battery power also means it can be moved around a room, or even be carried around outside, allowing users to watch videos on any flat surface they come across.
LG says the UST projector has a rechargeable battery that will last two-and-a-half hours — just enough time to watch a movie on the side of your neighbor's house — and an LED lamp with a brightness of 450 lumens. That kind of brightness means you'll still have trouble watching movies in broad daylight, but it's vastly more powerful than similarly portable projectors like Sony's MP-CL1 and Portable Ultra Short Throw Projector.
LG also announced a smaller PH150G front projector that weighs just 450 grams. As with its bigger sibling, the PH150G also has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities, but has a weaker lamp that's only capable of 130 lumens. It's set to arrive in October in the US, and will cost $349.99.
The main downside with both devices remains resolution. The PH450U can produce an 80-inch image from just over a foot away from a wall, but it's stuck at 1280 x 720, a resolution that is still HD, but may seem too fuzzy for people increasingly used to 4K TVs. Still, you're not going to be able to lug your 60-inch 4K screen on your next camping trip without some advance planning, whereas LG's new projectors could just slip into your bag. The PH450U will be available for $649.99 at Best Buy next month, with other retailers starting to sell it in October.