Calling it a mobile projector is perhaps pushing it a bit, at a weight of 2.5kg, but the NP215 performs reasonably well. However, although the ability to control multiple units via the included software is a bonus, it's a shame NEC didn't make more of the projector's built-in network connection.
Good image quality; ability to control multiple units over a network; low price.
Limited network capabilities; not particularly portable for a 'mobile' projector.
The NP215 is part of NEC's mobile projector line-up but, at a fairly hefty 2.5kg, it's not the most portable model we've seen. It is, however, relatively cheap at under £400.
Inputs are located at the rear of the chassis and include VGA, S-Video and composite, while a 7W internal speaker can be put to use via the separate audio-in socket. There's no USB port, though, which will disappoint those looking to launch presentations without the need for a nearby laptop.
The projector can be controlled via buttons on the top of the unit or the remote control. Thanks to its built-in local area network port, the NP215 can also be hooked up to a corporate network. The network-related functions are rather limited, though.
It's possible to set up a schedule as to when the projector should be automatically switched on and off, which could be useful in a reception area, for example, as well as freeze the image, mute the audio and change the inputs.
Perhaps the most useful network feature is that multiple projectors can be controlled using the software. However, what it can't do is stream content from a network-connected computer direct to the projector, which is a shame.
The NP215 has a native resolution of 1,024 x 768 and we've few complaints with overall image quality. Colours are vivid and, with brightness rated at 2,500 ANSI lumens, the projector is able to produce decent images even in brightly lit environments. The low resolution means that video playback isn't great and, as with most DLP projectors, a slight rainbow effect is visible during high-contrast scenes.
If cutting down on your company's carbon footprint is a priority, the NP215 will play its part, albeit a small one. Switch to Eco mode and it will drop the brightness by roughly 10 per cent. You'll also get a running total of the resultant reduction in carbon outputs.
In our tests, power consumption fell from 221W to 198W when switching Eco mode on. Further savings can be made if you stick to Eco mode, and NEC quotes lamp life at 5,000 hours as opposed to 3,500 under normal use.