NET/WORK / Philly Tech Week

We got a Vivitek Qumi Q5 LED pocket projector and are pretty impressed with it

We don't do many gadget reviews at When we do, it's for something we'll actually use, like this one-pound, six-inch-long projector.

The Vivitek Qumi Q5 LED projector. (Courtesy photo)
Full disclosure: A communications firm representing the Vivitek Qumi Q5 product line asked about doing a review and provided a model to use. No review or particular perspective was pledged. We are keeping and using the product, but we were not paid for this post.
We at do a lot of events.

We organize things like Philly Tech WeekBaltimore Innovation Week (coming up next month) and the NET/WORK jobs fair to bring together you technologists and entrepreneurs who read us. We don’t do many gadget reviews. But here goes.

A rep at Vivitek Corporation gave us the chance to play with the Qumi Q5 LED pocket projector, and we thought we might dabble. At about six inches by four inches by one inch, it’s the smallest projector we’ve ever seen. And considering how many times our events team has needed to project something on a wall — a video, a slide deck, a conference agenda — but our rented or on-site projector wouldn’t allow it, it also may be among the most convenient.

One of the latest in a model series that first launched in 2011, the pocket projector won’t replace all your commercial-grade projectors (it has just 500 lumens) but at one-pound in weight and $499 retail, you’re paying for flexibility.

In our brightly lit office, it took us less than 10 minutes to open the box and connect the projector to a laptop (we used the universal connection to VGA, with an adapter of our own to Mac Thunderbolt). My email inbox was then projected onto our whiteboard without difficulty.

The company’s specifications list the max resolution at 1600 x 1200 pixels, which might not work for our largest conference rooms but would most certainly fit for smaller events and any meeting we have. We also appreciated the helpful audio in/out feature if we wanted to use other speakers.

The backside of the Q5. (Courtesy photo)

Given how flexible the device aims to be, it comes with a mess of wires that could be easier to stuff back into its tidy box, and we might add that we scrambled to find items to stack to get the ideal projection height from such a tiny tool. Also, compared to how pretty its looks, its internal software is a bit clunky and the navigation can be tricky (simply because the device is so small, though there is a remote control, too), but in truth, it’s not much worse than any other projector we’ve used before.

So if you want to broadcast your favorite movie on an outdoor wall this summer, or drop a slide deck for a pitch meeting in an unusual space or even show a video at an event no one was ready for, the Vivitek Qumi Q5 is flexible, fast and accommodating.


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