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XGIMI Elfin review: Minimal design, maximum features

eileen-brown.jpg
Written by Eileen Brown on
XGIMI Elfin review minimalist design, maximum features zdnet
8.9

XGIMI Elfin mini projector

Outstanding
Like
  • Sleek minimalist design
  • Auto keystone and auto focus
  • Projects up to 200 inches
Don't Like
  • Will recalibrate keystone and refocus each time device moves

Oh wow. The XGIMI Elfin mini projector, launched today in the US, is a sleek, smooth, unobtrusive mini projector that will project an image up to 200 inches, yet you can carry it around with you.

There are minimal protrusions to spoil its clean lines, with only a few ports at the rear of the body. There are ports for HDMI and USB, a power supply and audio jack, and a power button.

The sides and the top are completely free of distracting holes and switches to spoil the look. The top of the projector is clear, and the bottom has three rubber feet and a socket for a tripod screw.

The XGIMI Elfin is an 800 ANSI lumens mini projector with two 3W Harman Kardon speakers and intelligent features built into the product. It is compact at 192.1 x 194.19 x 48.31 mm, weighs 900g and operates at under 30dB noise level -- you can hardly hear its cooling fan.

Inside the XGIMI Elfin mini projector, several cool features have annoyed me in the past with other projectors. Manual keystone correction drives me crazy, and each time I set a projector up, I need to fiddle with the keystone ring to project the image shape I want onto the wall.

The Elfin mini projector has an auto-keystone correction for both vertical and horizontal parameters up to 45 degrees and has autofocus too. If you move the XGIMI Elfin, it will automatically adjust its focus.

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Its LED lamp will deliver over 30 000 hours of use, and its high-light transmission coated lens shows bright and clear images -- even in fairly strong daylight.

The Elfin mini projector runs Android TV 10.0. Pair the projector with your remote control by pressing the home key and the return key simultaneously. The remote control power button flashes and is paired when a ping is heard from the projector.

The screen has a resolution of 1920 x 1080 and a throw ratio of 1.2:1. It will automatically recognise obstacles in its projection area and will adjust its projection image.

The XGIMI Elfin mini projector will project up to 200 inches -- more than enough for most rooms. It can be mounted in front of or behind the screen, on the ceiling or on a shelf.

The Elfin mini projector can also be packed in a backpack to go anywhere with you -- especially if you have a portable power pack like the Bluetti AC50S or Bluetti AC200P.

The Elfin mini projector connects to your home Wi-Fi over both 2.4 and 5GHz and is controlled by remote control and by Google Assistant. The Elfin uses Chromecast to cast videos from your mobile device. Motion compensation at 60MHz means that movement is clear with little blurring.

Setting up the Elfin mini projector was simple, with Google connecting seamlessly to my device. I downloaded the 1.05GB system V2.1.68 to make sure I had the latest features and bug fixes for the mini projector.

I like the Android TV interface, which is simple and intuitive to navigate. I connected my Vissles wireless keyboard to the Elfin to make keyboard searching easier -- but Google Assistant voice commands make the keyboard almost redundant.

Settings are easy to configure, and the interface is fast and responsive. The sound from the 3W speakers are more than adequate -- and are easily loud enough for a medium to large living room.

Connect the Elfin to a loud Bluetooth speaker like the Tribit StormBox Pro if you need louder sounds.

The 800 ANSI lumens, standardized and tested by the American National Standards Institute, give a good image even in broad daylight. There is no need to mess about making the room dark if you want to watch a movie during the daytime.

My only niggle is that if you move the projector at all, it goes through its auto-keystone and focusing to reposition itself. I found this a little annoying when setting the projector up and trying to get the best screen size in the room.

However, when I had decided on the correct place to position the Elfin mini projector, I found that the keystone and focus remained perfect throughout the whole time I used the projector.

In fact, there is little not to like about the XGIMI Elfin mini projector. Sleek, smooth, and minimalist, it will delight anyone who likes the crisp, clean lines of devices and enjoy automated functionality. 

At $649, this projector is well worth the investment for your home entertainment setup.

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