The LG HS102 would suit business travellers who do not want to carry around a standard-sized projector. Despite its small size, the projector is able to display large, bright images even in well lit rooms.
Small form factor; 160 ANSI lumens for impressive display quality.
Expensive; noisy fan; touch controls rather than physical buttons.
Back in December 2008, we reviewed Dell's miniature M109S LED projector. Its small size impressed us but, with just 50 ANSI lumens to its name, it needed a dark room in which to work, which isn't always feasible when it comes to impromptu presentations.
The new HS102 from LG, however, has 160 ANSI lumens to play with, more than three times that of the Dell M109S. The difference is immediately noticeable and, even in a well lit room, we were able to project a perfectly viewable 60in display at the native resolution of 800 x 600.
Of course, 160 ANSI lumens doesn't compare to the 1,500+ lumens of standard lamp-driven projectors, but it's enough for day-to-day business use and means you can project PowerPoint presentations without having to pull down the blinds.
There are VGA, S-Video and, via the included adapter, component video inputs at the rear of the device. An audio-out socket lets you attach external speakers, but if you're only presenting to a small group the in-built 1W speaker will suffice.
There's also a USB port that, thanks to DivX compatibility, allows you to play video direct from a USB drive.
A silver ring around the lens allows for manual focus control, although there's no zoom feature so you have to physically move the projector in order to adjust the size of the display.
Like Dell, LG has gone for touch-sensitive controls which makes it unnecessarily awkward to operate since you're forced to keep glancing down at the buttons to see which one you're about to press. Traditional physical buttons would solve this problem. In its favour, though, the HS102's buttons are more responsive than those on the Dell. LG also includes a remote control, so you can ditch the touch-sensitive controls altogether if you prefer.
For such a small projector, it's not as quiet as we'd thought it would be. A small but noisy fan at the rear emits a quoted 32dB. Switch on the Economic mode and this drops to 23dB, but brightness also takes quite a hit.
The LG projectors weighs in at 750g, twice as heavy as Dell's model which weighs only 360g.
There's plenty to like about the LG HS102. Despite its small size, it's able to project large, bright images even in well lit rooms and would suit the business traveller who doesn't want to carry around a standard-sized projector. The main stumbling block is its rather high £550 price tag.