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As we spend more of our time at home working from our home office and more of our leisure time watching the screen, it is becoming apparent that we need to have a good screen experience.
No longer restricted to the domain of the office, portable projectors are becoming the de facto addition to home theatre entertainment. Now the Jireno Cube4 offers a portable projector with 500 ANSI (American National Standards Institute) lumens and Android TV.
I received an early model pre-release speaker so some of the features promised in the final product were not in the package I received.
My box contained the Jireno Cube4 projector, a detachable handle, a remote control, and a power adaptor.
If you buy the $254 Kickstarter special deluxe package you will also receive a tripod, a storage bag, and an 84-inch projector screen -- however, these were not included in my package.
The Jireno Cube4 projector is a nice compact size with dimensions of 190 x 195 x 130mm and it weighs 2.2kg. It is not completely portable: You have to permanently connect the speaker to a power supply. There is no on-board battery for truly remote play.
The top of the unit has the power switch, and the bottom has a screw thread to mount the speaker on a stand or ceiling bracket.
The rear of the speaker has the power port, a USB Type-A slot, an IR port for the remote control, a USB Type-C port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
There are grilles on the front and the back of the speaker for two 5W speakers. There is no slot for a TF card. you will have to buy an adapter to use your TF card through the USB type-A slot.
The Cube 4 is made from aluminium CNC, and feels solid and well built. Its optics are sealed behind the lens, but there is no lens dust cover, or slide for when the Cube 4 is not in use, and it is easy to get fingerprints on the lens when picking up the projector.
The projector has a resolution of 1920 x 1080px from its LED lamp and will support 4k images with HDR 10+. It has a configurable aspect ratio of either 16:9 or 4:3 and will project an image from 30 inches up to 200 inches and modify the projected images by zooming.
Jireno recommends that you position the projector 2-3m away from the screen – although you can get a reasonable image from around 1.5m away from the screen.
The sealed lamp prevents dust ingress, promises 30,000 hours of use and will deliver an image with a contrast ratio of 3000:1. The image will autofocus on initialisation, and automatic keystone correction will get the best image shape possible.
Inside the projector, there is an Amlogic T972 chip running a quad-core Arm Cortex-A55 processor running at up to 1.98GHz with an Arm Mali-G31 MP2 GPU with support for OpenGL ES 3.2, Vulkan 1.1, and OpenCL 2.0 running Android TV. It has 2GB DDR4 RAM and has up to 16GB of storage.
The projector will connect to both 2.4GHz and 5GHz Wi-Fi. Connection to the Wi-Fi could be quicker. I found the remote control clunky and trying to enter my complex Wi-Fi password took such a long time that I gave up, and plugged a USB keyboard into the projector to finish the connection.
The first thing I noticed is that the projector is certainly not as bright as it claims to be. The ViewComm iSpace 2 at 250 ANSI lumens seems to be of similar brightness, and at 100ANSI lumens I think that the hp CC200 projector is actually brighter than the Jireno Cube4.
I would certainly take the claim of 500 ANSI lumens with a large pinch of salt. To get a bright enough image, project the screen onto a white wall and block out all available light sources.
When the projector switches on it will autofocus and deliver a sharp image, but make sure that you do not move the projector from its initial position. If you do move the projector you will need to readjust the focus using the controls on the projector.
Automatic keystoning is not on by default, but the keystone is easy to change when you get the projector set up in the place you want it to be.
Android TV is a nice touch, and it is easy to customise the interface to get the channels you want. Sound from its onboard 3W speakers is very good across the ranges with little distortion across mid and high ranges and reasonable bass.
Mouse mode is a bit of a pain though. Toggle mouse mode on and off and use the remote control like a mouse.
Unlike the XGIMI MoGo Pro projector which lets you wave the remote control on the screen to move the mouse, the Cube4 directional buttons move the mouse cursor around the screen.
Another issue is that the mouse cursor is black, the same colour as the Android TV background. I lost the mouse cursor several times before I gave up and used the directional menu arrows to navigate through the menu.
You can use your voice assistant to control the projector so you do not need to mess around with the remote control.
In use the Cube4 is quiet: Jireno says that the Cube4 produces less than 30dB when in use. The fan noise is not intrusive at all, and as soon as you have sound from the projector, you will not notice it.
All in all for under $200 the Jireno Cube 4 is a nice compact portable projector with a detachable carrying handle, good speakers, and Android TV.
Make sure you use it in a darkened room and tweak the autofocus and keystone settings to get the best image and you will have a nice portable projector for a good price.