DBPower T21 projector hands on: Low cost and portable - but not right for business

  • Editors' rating
    5.7 OK


  • Simple to set up
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Multiple connection options


  • Poor resolution
  • Not good for daylight use

The DBPower LED projectors are simple LED projectors for home and mobile use. They are not recommended for either PowerPoint or formal business presentations. I did not have high expectations of either projector.

DBPower T21 projector hands on: Low cost and portable - but not right for business ZDNet

DBPower Projectors. T20 (left) and T21 (right).


The T21 and the lower lumens T20 projector are both very similar devices straight out of the box. Both are 4.5 x 7.5 x 4.5 inches and weigh about 2.1 pounds.

The $99.99 T20 has 1500 lumens brightness whereas the $101.99 T21 has 1800 lumens with a contrast ratio of 1000:1.

On each projector there are ports for power, microphone, 3.5mm audio jack, USB in and USB 5V out. There is also an SD card slot. On the back of the projector there is a port for VGA and IR.

The projectors look similar -- and apart from the upgraded brightness, they are essentially the same model. Both have a keystone adjustment ring, a focus ring and a lens cap.

There are also two loudspeakers and an HDMI cable to connect to your PC. Each projector also has a remote control.

Top ZDNET Reviews

Both projectors have an aspect ratio of 16:10 and a projection ratio of 1.4:1. Resolution is 1920 x 1080, but for connection to a PC, 1024 x 768 will deliver the best clarity.

You can connect your smartphone to the projector through a wireless dongle -- which must be purchased separately. iPhone users can also connect by turning on the hotspot and Airplay.

The maximum projected image for both projectors is 176 inches at a distance of 5 metres -- adequate for home use, but not suitable for the office.

The LED projector is quick to come to maximum brightness and the casing does not seem too hot -- even with extended usage.

There is a simple keystone adjustment which twists the prism in the device and adjusts the screen. This is certainly more simple, less fiddly, and quick than the keystone adjustments I do on my expensive business projector.

As stated in the user manual, projecting PowerPoint was dire with fuzzy and low resolution slides. However, displaying both images and playing video were really good -- much better than I had initially expected.

The on-board loudspeaker was tinny -- like a laptop speaker -- but connecting the projector to an external speaker gave good sound. For such a small, low cost projector, this exceeded my low expectations

If you want a simple LED projector to show off your images and action camera videos and do not want to focus on PowerPoint business presentations then this low cost projector could meet your needs.

My advice would be to spend the extra two dollars for the 1800 lumens model, sit back in a darkened room, and enjoy the show.