When you think of installing a projector at home what’s the biggest obstacle you’ll face?
From my experience, it mainly comes down to how the projector would actually be installed.
Say for example you’ve freshly decorated your new living room, you’re certainly not going to want cables draped across the ceiling and walls to allow you to watch a movie on Sky HD. You’ll need power where the projector will go. You’ll have to decide if you want to ceiling mount it or on stable top stand. What about sound? Various practical issues have arisen over the years but now Philips might have come up with a solution to all of those problems. Here we have the ultra-short throw Philips Screeneo projector.
So what exactly is a Screeneo?! Sounds a bit different doesn’t it? And it certainly looks different than any other projector I’ve seen on the market before. It looks like a cross between a paper shredder and a mop bucket. It has a carry handle for portability but don’t let that fool you. The Screeneo is an impressive piece of equipment. It weighs just over 8kg with dimensions of 316 x 249 x 282mm its solid and robust. It feels like it could take an absolute beating and still work effortlessly.
Under that robust exterior there is a lot going on so let’s take a look at what you can plug into it. You’d assume all you’d find is a few HDMI connections and maybe a VGA. But there’s a bit more about it than your standard projector which seems to be a recurring theme. There’s a total of 3 HDMI connections, and both composite and VGA. That’s pretty standard but here is where it gets interesting. A very handy USB input is added so you can watch films straight from a memory stick without the need for anything else. It’s not all visual with the Screeneo as there are headphone and RCA outputs for audio. But also an optical input for audio if you want to take advantage of the built-in speaker, which to be fair isn’t too bad and offers a 2.1 channel system from this one box. Obviously, it doesn’t blow you away but it’s still decent for what it is. Add in the fact you can stream music from your phone or tablet via Bluetooth and you’ve got yourself a home cinema hub on your hands.
I guess features and inputs are one thing but how does it actually look? First of all, the Screeneo is a breeze to set up. You simply take it out of the box, place it in front of your screen or wall if that’s your thing and away you go. There’s zoom and keystone adjustments to get the picture exactly how you want it but I found the process easy.
Being an ultra-short throw projector you can literally place the projector in front of the screen and you will get a 50-inch screen size without any problems. Want a bigger screen? Then simply move the Screeneo back from screen/wall and hey presto. You can get anything from a 50 – 120inch screen just by moving the projector backwards. Since it fires up to the screen I would say that buying the correct screen is paramount. If your screen doesn’t come down far enough or you have high ceilings, you may find yourself finding something to put the Screeneo on to make it reach the screen.
We’ve established how easy it can be to set up and what you can plug into it but that’s no good if the pictures aren’t decent. So let’s put some Blu-rays through it and see what we have on our hands.
Using the common DLP (digital light processing) technology to produce the image, the Screeneo produces a strong and stable image. I put a bit of “Fantastic Beasts” on blu-ray and it holds everything together nicely. Skin tones are natural with great balance and it is something you could easily watch well into the night. There’s a lot of darker scenes in this film and that’s one area where it could improve upon slightly as scenes could be a touch darker when needed. The 2000 lumens it produces helps counteract that though as when we see something vibrant it becomes really impressive. White levels are crisp and really pop. I’d recommend not using the projectors brightest setting though as it could be a bit too bright for some. You can see how Philips can claim a contrast ratio of 200,000 to 1 as the colour spectrum is superb.
It’s a really good all-rounder and a has a few USP’s which I just don’t see out there at the moment from the competition. Sure there are other similar ultra-short throw projectors out there but nothing like this. Fancy seeing exactly how it all works then just pop down to your local Richer Sounds and see for yourself.
Author: Bradley, Plymouth Store