If you’re looking to get a portable pico projector you are definitely in the right place. In this review we take a detailed look at the ten best pico projectors money can buy, in order to help you find the perfect one for you.
The first step towards finding the best device to you is knowing exactly which features are a must for you. Is it a built-in battery with a massive capacity? Or just excellent image resolution? Maybe you want a device with built-in Android system that can do it all? No matter what you’ve said yes to, we’ve got your back. Read on the find the best portable pico projector for you!
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BEST 4K SUPPORT
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MOST AFFORDABLE OPTION
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BEST MID-RANGE OPTION
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The Anker Nebula projector is a great option if you’re looking for something that has a long battery life. You can get four hours of video from this projector, which is really great – you’d be able to stream the entirety of The Irishman, as well as the behind-the-scenes chat. But you’d have to download the Netflix app to the Nebula Capsule first since you can’t mirror copyrighted content from your phone.
You can also use this as a Bluetooth speaker if you want. It features a 360 speaker that guarantees great and immersive sound, and its battery can last for up to 30 hours in this mode. And that is absolutely insane, especially considering that the device doesn’t even have a big battery capacity.
The Nebula projector features a max resolution of 1080p, but the native resolution is 480p. This means you can stream higher quality stuff from your phone or laptop, but when you’re streaming directly from the projector you’ll get slightly lower quality.
In addition to that, The Nebula Capsule projector is also incredibly portable. In fact, one of the main selling points for this device is that it’s the same size as a can – if there’s room for a beer, there’s definitely enough room for this pico projector.
The Nebula Capsule is easily the portable projector I would recommend to people who want something they can use off-grid. Whether you want to watch movies in your backyard or just be able to dance for 30 hours on a camping trip, the Nebula pico projector is up to the task.
If you won’t settle for anything other than premium features then the Xgimi mini projector is the best option for you. It’s one of the priciest pico projectors featured in this review, but it also has features that the cheaper devices can only dream of having.
This features a native resolution 1080p, with support for 2K and 4K. That’s right – this tiny device that will fit into your backpack’s pocket lets you play 4K videos whenever and wherever you want. And with the autofocus that boasts more than 1000 focus points, every single pixel of that image will be ultra-sharp.
The Mogo portable projector also features a built-in Android system, which lets you choose from over 500 different apps to download. And that means that you don’t even have to connect your phone or laptop to the projector for the fun to begin.
Also, since this is an Android system, that also means you will have access to Google Assistant. You can use it to download apps from the Play Store, or just to cast stuff from your phone without lifting a finger. And if you download a file manager to the projector, you can also just plug in a USB to view files.
The Mogo is so much more than a pico projector, and that’s exactly why it’s worth every single penny. Keep in mind that this is also a virtual assistant, and you can use it to control smart home devices, update shopping lists, check emails, watch movies and videos and lots of other stuff.
If you’re on a really tight budget, the Meer projector is one of the best options for you. It retails for some $80, which makes it one of the most affordable pico projectors you can get. But there is a catch – the low price tag reflects the fact that the projector does not have a built-in battery, and therefore cannot be used wirelessly.
The Meer pico projectors feature a max resolution of 1080p, while the native resolution sits at 480p. It can be used with screen sizes that range from 24” to 60”, while the max distance from the screen is 2.5 feet.
This has a contrast ratio of 800:1, which is okay. You won’t experience any truly deep colors, but it’s a totally fine contrast for just watching movies or playing some video games. And at least you can play them in Full HD!
Also, this can be a bit tricky to use, due to lots of compatibility issues. If you want to connect this to your phone with a cable, you will need an HDMI adapter. For iPhones you need a lightning to HDMI adapter, and for Androids you’ll need a USB C/Micro USB to HDMI adapter. None of those are included in the purchase of the projector.
But, at least you don’t have to worry about setting up the Meer portable projector, since it comes with detachable tripod legs. Secure them in place to use the projector however you want, and take them off if you want to pack the Meer to carry it places. Just keep in mind that this is a bit bulky due to the egg shape, and it’s definitely not the most portable option out of the bunch.
The Akaso mini projector is one of my favorite mid-range options. This mini projector has built-in Android system, so it’s a very versatile pico projector with all sorts of different features. You can download apps onto it and use the device without connecting it to anything else.
Or you can connect it to your laptop with an HDMI cable and mirror the entire screen. Apart from the HDMI port, this also features a USB port, a micro SD card slot, and a headphone jack. The Akaso projector also supports WiFi connectivity, allowing you to easily use it with your phone or tablet without any additional cables.
What I like the most about this portable projector are the touch-sensitive controls. They take some getting used to, but once you’ve gotten the hang of the controls, you will be able to operate the projector in your sleep. It’s very intuitive to use, and there are icons to let you know what the different controls are. If you’re proficient with smartphones, you’ll master the Akaso projector in no time.
Additionally, this pico projector also has the advantage of being ultra-portable. It is only slightly bigger than the average smartphone, so you can easily take it anywhere. And thanks to the built-in rechargeable battery, you can also use this projector wherever you want.
The capacity of the battery is some 5000 mAh, which equals about 2-3 hours of playing videos. Considering that the capacity of the device is average at best, three hours of playtime is pretty impressive if you ask me.
The AirGo pico projector is a great option if you want a device that can literally fit in your pocket. This is about the same size as an iPhone X, so it is easily one of the most portable projectors out of the bunch.
And you’re getting some really good specs in a really tiny body. The AirGo features a contrast ratio of 1000:1, which is pretty good. It allows for a projection size of 30-120”, but works best at 80”. At least, that’s the size that looks best with the 480p native resolution.
You’ll also be happy to know that the AirGo projector has lots of different input ports. It obviously has a HDMI and USB port, but it also features a micro SD card slot and a headphone jack – something your phone most likely lacks.
What’s even better is that you can use this pico projector wirelessly if you want. It uses WiFi to connect to other devices, but there are some limitations in terms of what you can do over WiFi. The most important one is that you can’t mirror or screencast copyrighted content from HBOGO, Netflix or similar service. But you can stream whatever you want if you’re connected to the projector with an HDMI cable.
Obviously, you will need an adapter to use the HDMI cable with your phone, and the downside is that you won’t get one with the portable projector. You’ll have to buy the adapter separately, so don’t forget about that if you wind up getting this pico projector.
The Akaso projector is one of the smallest portable projectors with a built-in battery. It is about the size of an external hard drive, and it weighs less than half a pound. If you’re prioritizing portability over everything else, this is the projector to get.
It has a 4000 mAh battery, which has an average life of some 2 hours. And with a contrast ratio of 2000:1, you can expect some truly stunning images and video.
The thing I love the most about the Akaso pico projector is the wide variety of input ports. This features a USB port as well as HDMI, AV, and Micro SD ports, so you can really use the device with anything you want. Connect it to your phone wirelessly to use your smartphone with a massive screen, or connect it to a console to play AAA games anywhere – it’s entirely up to you.
One thing to note is that there are some limits when you’re using the portable projector to mirror your phone. It can’t play copyrighted content (Netflix, Hulu, etc.) wirelessly, so I’m sorry if you just wanted to watch movies out of your bed. You can stream Netflix (or other services) if you connect the projector to your laptop or console with a cable though.
We also need to talk about the resolution and screen sizes. This pico projector has a max resolution of 854 x 400, which means it’s best to use it with smaller screens. Sure, it supports image projection size of up to 120”, but that wouldn’t be the crispest image.
The Vankyo pico projector is a great option if you want something that has a long battery life. With a 5200vmAh built-in batter, the Vankyo mini projector can last for up to three hours of continuous use – about three times longer than the average pico projector.
And it supports Wi-Fi connectivity, so it is possible to use it entirely wirelessly. This allows you to use it with your phone, tablet, laptop, and pretty much any device that supports WiFi, which is pretty cool. Plus, the projector does have USB and HDMI input ports, and you can always use cables if you want a more stable viewing experience.
This is particularly useful if you want the projector for use at home – just set it up once, and you won’t really have to touch it again for a while. You will need to touch the remote control quite often though, as it’s not really possible to operate the projector without it. You can’t even choose the default input without the remote control.
This mini projector features support for a 3D viewing experience, which is pretty cool. As long as you have a pair of 3D glasses, you will be able to enjoy all those movies you missed in the comfort of your own home!
On top of that, the Vankyo projector features a max resolution of 1080p. It comes with a small tripod so that you can set it up anywhere you want, and that’s pretty cool. Plus, you will also get a carrying case, so it’s super easy to take the Burger projector anywhere you want.
The Sony projector is a good choice if you’re looking for a high quality mini projector. It’s more expensive than most others, and it doesn’t really offer any extra features. In fact, this projector doesn’t even support HD – the max resolution is 480p. So, why get this projector, when you could buy something that’s a lot more functional for less cash?
Well, for one because this is made by Sony, and you already know that their products are very high quality. If you want a projector that’s ultra-tough, durable and which you can be certain won’t malfunction, this is the one to get.
Another reason is the excellent portability of this projector. It is only 2” thick, so you’ll be able to fit it into every backpack. And it comes with a carry case, which will protect the projector lens and all the different input ports from the elements.
It has a built-in battery with a capacity of 5000 mAh, so you can use it for about two hours without plugging it into a power source. That’s great for watching movies and playing some quick games. The Sony pico projector supports a max image size of 120”, but it works best at 80”. Especially if you’re distanced at least 8 feet from the screen, for the 80” image size.
Additionally, this has several different input ports, so you can use it with a wide variety of devices. Of course, it features the standard USB and HDMI ports, as well as a 3.5mm output for audio. And you will get two extra cables and an adapter with the projector, so you will really be able to use it with many different devices.
The P300 pico projector is an excellent option if you’re looking for something that supports Full HD. With a max resolution of 1080p, this projector guarantees great image quality at nearly any size. And it support sizes up to 120”, but works best at around 80”.
The contrast ratio is 2000:1, so you’re going to experience some really deep and vibrant colors. That’s actually why I like this projector so much – if your priority is image quality, the Aaxa Technologies projector is one of the best options for you. But before you go out and buy it, let me tell you about its main upsides and downsides first.
One thing to note is that the battery capacity is not specified. The manufacturer states that the mini projector does have a rechargeable battery, with a runtime of about 60 minutes. Even though that’s pretty short, it’s still a lot better than not having an internal battery at all.
In addition to that, the P300 projector features several different input ports – HDMI, AV, Mini-VGA, USB, and micro SD. You can really use it with pretty much any device you want, but only if you have the appropriate cable. This brings me to the P300’s largest downside – it doesn’t have Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, so it does not support wireless use.
On top of that, it’s also disappointing that it doesn’t come with a carry case. It does come with a tripod though, so at least you are getting some accessories included in the hefty price of the projector.
The Aucary pico projector is another great option for people who want a versatile pocket-sized gadget. It has a built-in Android system, so you can use the projector without connecting any device to it. You will just have to download the apps you want to use first.
And you can also connect this to a phone or a laptop wirelessly or with a cable. The Aucary projector features several different input ports, including multiple USB ports, an HDMI port, a headphone jack, and a micro SD card slot.
The native resolution of this projector is 480p, but it supports 1080p and 4K video streaming. On top of that, the Aucary features a max screen size of 300”, which is absolutely astonishing. If you need something that’s capable of projecting massive images, this is without a doubt for the projector to get.
Just keep in mind that you’re not going to get breathtaking image quality on a 300” screen. In terms of image quality, it’s best to use the projector for an image size of 80-120”.
This projector features a pretty big battery with a capacity of 8400 mAh. However, the massive rechargeable battery capacity doesn’t actually mean great battery life; you can get up to two hours of video from the device, which isn’t really impressive.
One way you can make use of the large battery capacity is to use the projector as a power bank. Modern smartphones have an average battery capacity of 4000-5000 mAh, so you might even get two full charges out of the projector, depending on your phone’s battery!
Battery capacity is an important feature of pico projectors. It determines how long you can actually use the projector for, without having to plug it into a source of electricity. The larger the batter capacity, the longer the operating time.
However, it’s not just about the mAh number – that’s just the starting point. The maximum resolution and contrast ratio also plays a big part here. To put it in basic terms, the higher the image quality, the shorter the battery life.
The average pico projector has a battery life of one hour, and that doesn’t sound like a lot. I did include some projectors with really big batteries, and you’ll be able to get 3-4 of use out of those. But that’s as high as it gets, and some mini projectors don’t have a built-in rechargeable battery at all.
While they might not be the most portable option out there, pico projectors without batteries are the best for people who are on really tight budgets. Especially if you’re planning to use it for watching movies or playing games – you’ll have to plug it in any way to get more than an hour of use, and they’re a lot cheaper than the better projectors. Mini projectors without batteries are generally under $100, while the more portable ones are rarely under $200.
Another thing to consider here is whether or not the projector has a built-in operating system. I’ve included several projectors that run on Android, and those usually have massive battery capacities, but average battery life. That’s because Android-operated projectors have a higher battery usage – basically, they will use up more electricity but won’t last longer than a basic pico projector.
Because of that, be sure to check the average battery life of the devices you’re thinking of getting. There are some surprises and inconsistencies, including 10000 mAh batteries that last 2 hours, versus 5000 mAh that can last up to 4 hours.
How much can you afford to spend on a portable projector? I’ve shown you gadgets in lots of different price ranges, but they all differ one from another.
Here’s the thing – if you want a budget portable projector, you’re going to have to make some compromises. You can pick up one for less than $100, but it’s highly unlikely that it will have a built-in battery. You’ll also have to settle for a lower contrast ratio and max resolution, as well as limited connectivity.
On the other hand, if you can afford the pricier projectors, then look for one that has all the features you want. You won’t get the same features on all of these pico projectors; they differ in max resolution, contrast ratio, and battery life. And what’s even more interesting is that the best ones won’t necessarily have the highest resolution or battery capacity.
The best projectors are the ones that are made by trusted brands, and which actually perform as well as it says on the box. Sony and Anker projectors will always be better options than ones from an unknown brand, regardless of what it says on the box. At least you can be certain that your Sony device won’t malfunction within the first week, and that you will be able to use it for a while. The same can’t be said for some of the more budget-friendly projectors out there.
The good news is that I’ve included only projectors that have really high reviews, so none of them should break or malfunction when you first get them. And if you use them properly, you should be able to get quite a lot of use out of them. In any case, if you’re concerned about the longevity of a pico projector, be sure to check out how long it’s covered by warranty.
All of the projectors featured in this review are portable, but some more so than others. The dimensions are the obvious thing to look at – the smaller a projector, the more portable it is. However, it’s not just about the size. You also need to look for features that increase the portability of a particular device, and in turn, make your life easier.
The first such thing is a built-in battery. If you want to be able to use a projector without plugging it into a power source, it needs to have a built-in battery. The good news is that I included only one projector without a battery, so 9/10 are super portable in this sense
The other thing to consider is the battery life. Here’s the catch – most of these portable projectors have a battery life of about two hours. Very few have a shorter battery life, and even fewer have longer battery life. In case you really need something that can handle 3-4 hours of playtime without any extra power, you are looking at some really pricey projectors.
Another thing you should pay attention to is the shape of the portable projector. If you need it to be ultra-portable, then avoid all the bulky shapes and stick to the sleek devices that aren’t much bigger than your smartphones. Some of the pico projectors featured in this review are actually small enough to fit into your pocket, and that’s really cool. Anyway, I’ve indicated which devices are the most portable ones in the pros boxes.
If you’re having a difficult time deciding which portable projector to get, just go with one of our top three options. They’re our favorites for a reason, and you certainly won’t be disappointed with any of them!
The overall best mini projector is the Anker Nebula. It features a really good battery, which can get you about four hours of video streaming. And if you decide to use the projector in Bluetooth speaker mode, you can get a whooping 30 hours of playtime! None of the other devices even come close to those numbers, which is exactly why the Anker Nebula is our first choice. Plus, it supports 1080p resolution, with a max screen size of 100″. And it has a bunch of different input ports, allowing you to use it with pretty much any device you want.
In case you want a portable projector that is able to stream 4K videos, your best option is the Xgimi MoGo. It is a pricey projector, but it is equipped with features that the cheaper options can only dream of. This has a built-in Android, fully equipped with a perfectly functioning Google Assistant. This means that in addition to streaming 4K videos on screens up to 100″, you can also use the MoGo to control a smart home, check your emails, order food and so much more.
If you are looking for a budget option, go with the Meer portable projector. It retails for under $100, so it’s definitely one of the most affordable pico projectors you can get. It supports 1080p resolution, and it allows you to choose any screen size up to 60″. The projector features multiple input ports, including HDMI, USB, and AV, so that you can use it with a variety of different devices. The only catch is that it doesn’t have a built-in battery, and you can only use it when it’s plugged into an outlet. But if you’re prioritizing affordability, you will need to make some sacrifices.
Head over to Amazon to see the prices of all the pico projectors featured in this review. And check out our related posts for ideas on other must-have gadgets that you might be missing out on!