[PLUG-TALK] Cheap/cheap video projector

Keith Lofstrom keithl at gate.kl-ic.com
Wed Feb 6 11:08:18 PST 2013

Grocery Outlet (!) has some video projectors for $39.99:  "Black
Series by Shift³ Portable Entertainment Projector" model 1647916
distributed by MerchSource of Foothill Ranch CA.  WTF?  I had to
buy one to see how a bottom-of-the-line video projector is made
for the cheap-price/cheap-quality corner of the product spectrum.
Professional interest; I've worked on display chips for projectors.

No specs, but I'm guessing 512 x 360, color LCD, 400 lumens.  RCA
composite video input, plus two RCA audio inputs, with a headphone
jack output.  Adjustable plastic lens.  Overhead projector bulb
with a noisy fan.  9"x9"x4" plastic case (9 screws), plastic bale
handle, white with green trim.

The picture is dim and fuzzy and defocused around the edges, but
you can actually see a picture, even read the g**dam FBI warning
on a DVD.  I would get a headache watching a whole movie with it. 
But I can imagine it would work fine as part of some kinetic art
display, perhaps ten of these machines projecting video images
in odd directions (if you can make ten channels of RCA video).
I eagerly anticipate what clever hackers will do with it.

I won't have time to take it apart for a few weeks, but at $40
they probably won't last long.  Even if they are crap.


Keith Lofstrom          keithl at keithl.com         Voice (503)-520-1993

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