Best Mini Projectors of 2021 2021/2022 – Buyer’s Guide 

Mini projectors are a must-have for those who are constantly on the go. Whether it’s for family road trips, leadership conferences, or everyday situations, having a mini projector on standby is always a good idea.

Mini projectors will allow you to present slideshows, watch movies, or give presentations whenever you need to.

1. Our Top Pick: Optoma ML1050ST 
2. Best OverallViewSonic M1 Portable Projector
3. Best Value: Epson PowerLite

They come with many different features and uses. And, no, not all mini projectors are made equal. Finding the best mini projector for your needs depends on how you’d like to use it.

So, what are the best mini projectors?

The Five Best Mini Projectors You Need to Know About

The table below delivers an overview of the top five as well as their highlights and why you’d want them.

Below that, we’ll dive into the nitty-gritty details and functions of each mini projector individually.

An In-Depth Review of the Best

If you’re looking for a more detailed comparison of each of the mini projectors, you’ve found the right place.

Each of these products has features that may be unique to them and they serve different functions and needs. Take note of the pros and cons to get a quick glimpse into the benefits of each mini projector.

If you’re curious as to what specs matter and how much, a buying guide is found below to help your needs!

Here is the reviewed list:

ViewSonic M1 Portable Projector

The ViewSonic is a great portable projector that has a wide range of ports so it can serve its purpose in almost every scenario.

It’ll take video inputs from HDMI, SD cards, and USB-C.

It uses a short-throw lens to project, so you can expect a large image from this small machine. From 8 feet and 9 inches away, you can expect the M1 to project a 100-inch screen. This can be ideal if you have limited space such as a meeting room or in one-on-one presentations.

It’s easy to set up and comes with its stand so you can easily adjust the image. You won’t find yourself fiddling with a projector that seems impossible to work with the M1, it’s incredibly user-friendly and isn’t difficult to figure out.

On the downside, it does lack in lumens and resolution. It delivers a mere 250 lumens and a resolution of 854x480p. This can make some high-quality images a bit blurry if the image projected is too large.

This shouldn’t be much of an issue in a work or professional environment – presentations, PDFs, excel spreadsheets and more are easily viewed and won’t cause any issues.

However, it may not be the best option to satisfy your teenagers on a family vacation.


  • Multiple video inputs
  • User-friendly
  • Short-throw lens for huge images


  • The brightness is relatively low
  • The resolution isn’t optimal for entertainment

Epson Powerlite Projector

The Epson Powerlite is similar to the M1 if the M1 was the caterpillar and this one was the butterfly.

You can expect to use the M1 and the S41 for the same functions – mostly professional environments. However, the Epson Powerlite brings all the features you’re missing and with better equipment.

As with all mini projectors, they’re meant for use on the go. Its small size allows you to carry it with you, easily, without any hassle.

The Epson Powerlight isn’t a short-throw projector, so you’ll be losing the ability to deliver projections at close ranges, but you gain image size. It’s able to produce an image size of up to 300 inches. You’ll have no trouble presenting to several hundred people with that capability.

The video inputs are also expanded and work with USB 2.0, Wi-Fi, VGA, HDMI, Composite, and S-Video.

Its brightness shines through with 3,300 lumens of extra light. This will vastly enhance the clarity of your projections. 

On the flip side, the resolution is the only 800x600p, so don’t be expecting a cinematic experience when using the Epson Powerlite.


  • The image size can be up to 300 images
  • 3,300 lumens will translate into great clarity
  • Wi-Fi compatible with a variety of video inputs


  • Lacks in resolution
  • Only a 4:3 aspect ratio

Optoma ML1050ST

The ML1050ST is an impressive short-throw mini projector that brings together all your needs into one place.

It weighs under a pound, so, you’ll easily be able to carry it in your purse, bag, car, or even under your arm without any stress.

The short-throw projector will project up to 100-inches from a short distance away. That translates into a huge picture in areas where you may be confined.

Much like the M1, short-throw projectors will sacrifice huge, 300-inch screens for the ability to cast a highly-respectable 100-inches from just feet away.

You can expect the LED light to last approximately 30,000 hours. If you think that’s too little, you watch your projector too much. 30,000 hours will last an average of five hours a day over 16 years. That’s value.

The lumens on the ML1050ST are also sitting pretty at exactly 1,000. This means any poorly-lit areas won’t be a problem to work with. Your images will project fine.

The autofocus on the ML1050ST is a feature we haven’t seen yet on this list. The autofocus will allow the projector to readjust images if they’re moved or bumped without any reconfiguration of the projector. This means


  • 30,000 LED light life span
  • Above-average lumens
  • Autofocus features to save you the trouble of adjusting the images


  • Not great for entertainment as the resolution isn’t HD

Your One-Stop Mini Projectors Buying Guide

It’s important to know what aspects of a projector are the most important to you. It all depends on your needs, but it can be confusing to understand which specs are good for what.

Luckily for you, we’ve created an easy-to-read buying guide to go over the key features you should look out for when buying a mini projector.

Work or Play?

This should be the first question you ask yourself when you’re looking to purchase a mini projector. The answer to this will vastly change the options you should be looking at.

Mini projectors made for work environments will typically have brighter lumens associated with it. You’ll often see the lumens reach 4,000 or more in these projectors.

That’s because professional environments can have a large variety of light settings. More lumen translates into an easier viewing experience if the room is full of light.

On the other hand, those who are wanting a projector for video games or general entertainment don’t need to worry as much about the lumens. Ideally, your projector should be set in a room that is optimized to be as dark as possible when using the projector.

If you’re accustomed to watching movies and playing games at night or in a dark room, you’ll only require a relatively low amount of lumens.

Mini Projectors Brightness

As I’ve stated above, lumens come into play when thinking about how and where you’ll be using your mini projector.

You can expect most projectors lumens to start at around 300 but many can and do expand into 6,000+. The prices associated with more lumens may vary, but a generous amount of lumens won’t matter as much if you’re consistently using your mini projector in a dark environment.

Mini Projectors Short-Throw Question

Short-throw projectors are great options, depending on your circumstances. These mini projectors can deliver large images from a small distance away, making them perfect for areas with confined space.

However, they give up some size in the process. Short-throw projectors will often be limited to 150-inches, or in many cases, 100-inches. These can be ideal for more personal settings or work meetings. But, don’t bring them to a presentation for 300.

Generally, short-throw mini projectors aren’t needed for gaming purposes, unless you’re looking for something to put in a personal room.

The choice is yours.

In Summary

Purchasing a mini projector in 2019 can be a tough decision. Finding the best one is even more difficult as the answer will vary depending on what you need it for.

You’ve made the first step, and these mini projectors listed should cover all the needs you may want out of a mini projector. They’re the five best mini projectors in 2019, and they’ve all earned it.

Be sure to focus on what you need your mini projector for before you buy one.

Lumens, short-throw, long-throw, and the setting you’ll be using it in are the key factors to look out for to make the best purchase of 2019.