Optoma HD27e 3400 Lumens 1080p Home Theatre Projector
The HD27e is brighter and quieter than the Optoma HD27, and although it may not be 4K, with its stunning 3,400 lumens of brightness, built-in 10W speaker and compatibility with the likes of Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV, the HD27e does appear to be a versatile all-in-one projector.
At 316 x 244 x 108mm (11.7 x 3.7 x 9 inches) and 6.4lb/ 2.9kg, not only is the HD27e highly portable and easy to carry but, thankfully, it’s relatively simple to set-up, too. Although it can produce, in theory, a 300-inch image, plan on creating an 80/100-inch image from about 2.5m away. Should you plan on moving it closer or further away, however, there’s always Optoma’s distance calculator.
The only problem we found during setup is that its rather weak manual 1.1 zoom does make it slightly tricky to position, but basic vertical keystone correction software should be able to accurately aim the HD27e. Shipping with a small remote that is instantly backlit the moment you touch it, the HD27e’s rear panel has a couple of HDMI inputs (both 1.4 specs), and a USB slot that can support the likes of Google Chromecast and Amazon FireStick.
That might be enough for some, but the absence of any legacy video inputs cold irritate if, for instance, you have an old Nintendo Wii hanging around. Other I/O back there include a 3.5mm audio output and a 12V trigger for using the HD27e within a home cinema control system. If you’re still watching 3D Blu-ray discs, know that the HD27e is compatible if you buy Optoma’s 3D specs.
Although the HD27e is clearly designed to be used in all kinds of ambient light conditions, a complete blackout is necessary to get the measure of its image quality for movies: Put into Cinema mode with the lamp on Eco (which also ensures the HD27e will reach a dizzying 10,000 hours), the color accuracy is immediately obvious. The HD27e projector reaches the Rec709 standard, which is less vibrant than the HDR trend in TVs, but impressive nonetheless. Even black is delivered well enough for the HD27e’s low price, and detail is high enough on broadcast TV, even at 80-inches+.
The HD27e however, isn’t quite as bright as we had hoped. Used on a dull, overcast day, flinging-open the blinds didn’t much affect the HD27e’s claimed 3,400 lumens bright image. On a sunny day, the picture does significantly degrade even in Bright mode, though it remained just about watchable. This is an issue that happens with most projectors unless you go for the really expensive top end of the market.
We didn’t have high hopes for the speaker, but in use, its 10W proved more than enough for using the Optoma HD27e somewhere without a separate sound system. It’s not terribly clear and it’s certainly not suited to a musical soundtrack, but it’s enough for sports commentary and games. However, connect it via the 3.5mm jack to a sound bar or sound system and you get a real sense of its audio capabilities. This adds to the HD27e’s main claim of versatility and value, but its images always impress at this low price.
For those who do suffer from the ‘rainbow effect’ when watching some DLP projectors (only some people are affected by this visual artefact caused by the sequential creation of colours by single-chip DLP projectors), know that the Optoma HD27e didn’t cause such effect on previous sufferers.
The entry-level Optoma HD27e does not claim to deliver best-ever images, but for anyone looking for a projector to take anywhere and do anything, it will do an excellent job. There are some things it could do better, such as a better zoom to make positioning easier and better brightness levels, but aside from those caveats, it’s surprisingly good. It’s highly portable, has its own basic sound system, and delivers reasonably impressive images across the board. Add a dongle and you can create your own smart, bright and super-sized images for watching sports during the day, and a movie when it gets dark.
Is the HD27e capable of completely replacing a TV for a ‘wallpaper’ projection? Probably not, but as an occasional projector and/ or movie theatre experience it’s hard to criticize at this price. Who needs 4K when Full HD can be this much affordable fun?
I must say I am blown away by the device. Out of the box with no adjustments, we’re projecting what must be a 120″ image on a white wall and it looks incredible. The picture is crystal clear, the contrast is deep and the colours are rich and vibrant. Once you sit down, have a drink and some popcorn, you forget you are at home, you think you’re watching a movie at the theatre. We highly recommend this product.