Anyone who’s ever used a standard projector will feel immediately at home with the Mitsubishi XD221U.

The Mitsubishi XD221U is not the most portable projector, but that doesn’t stop it being eminently luggable, in a sling-it-over-your-shoulder-in-a-bag type way. Mitsubishi even throws a bag in as part of the asking price.

Tech-wise the Mitsubishi XD221U features a DLP video projection system with a five-segment colour wheel, which means you and your audience should suffer less from the ‘rainbow effect’ – an image aberration that can occur when you splash presentations up on screen. Since it’s a 1,024x768 XGA model you’ll be able to enjoy DVD movies at their original resolution, as well as 720p HD content.

The Mitsubishi XD221U is well kitted out for a projector at this price in terms of connectivity, with two VGA ports and S-Video and composite video inputs. It also has two 3.5mm audio inputs, both of which can be used by the Audio Mixer function to provide a soundtrack alongside your own commentary via a microphone. The only obvious downsides are a complete absence of DVI, HDMI or mini-DisplayPort sockets, but that’s not unexpected at this price point.

Other goodies include a separate security slot and bar so you can ensure no one walks off with the Mitsubishi XD221U projector and a 10W speaker that makes up for its lack of bass with sheer volume – but you can use an off-board sound system via the audio output too. Disappointingly, access to settings like keystone correction, image size, shape, colour balance and other essentials are left to the remote control, which isn’t backlit, making it tricky to use in the dark. On the plus side, pulling up the tabbed menu system gives you three levels of control (basic, medium and advanced), which makes it easy to get the projector up and running.

The best news is that the Mitsubishi XD221U is easily one of the most accomplished performers here. Picture quality with Keynote presentations is great and you can even show off spreadsheets without too many jaggies. For home movie viewing, the XD221U acquits itself well, even if it doesn’t quite deliver the sharpness, brightness and depth of detail in darker areas of the picture that more pricy projectors can.

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

Mitsubishi XD221U [PCA]: Specs

  • DLP Projector
  • Built-in Speaker
  • 2300 ANSI lumens
  • Image Contrast Ratio: 2000:1
  • Image Size: 1.02-7.62m
  • Throw Ratio: 1.8-2.1:1
  • XGA (1024x768) (native)/1280x1024 (resized)
  • Native Aspect Ratio: 4:3
  • Video Bandwidth: 110MHz
  • Display Format: 786,432 pixels
  • Max Sync Rate (VxH): 85Hz x 80kHz
  • 180 Watt bulb
  • Bulb life cycle: 3000 hour(s)/4000 hour(s) (economic mode)
  • Keystone correction
  • Low Power Mode, Closed Caption, wall colour correction, BrilliantColor, Colour Enhancer technology
  • Manual Focus
  • F/2.5-2.7
  • Manual Zoom, 1.2x
  • Ethernet
  • NTSC, SECAM, PAL, PAL-N, PAL-M, NTSC 4.43, PAL 60
  • RGB, S-Video, composite video
  • 480p, 720p, 1080i, 480i, 525i, 525p, 625p, 625i, 576i, 576p, 1080/60i, 1080/50i, 750p, 1125i
  • RGB
  • 320x236x104mm
  • 3.2kg
  • DLP Projector
  • Built-in Speaker
  • 2300 ANSI lumens
  • Image Contrast Ratio: 2000:1
  • Image Size: 1.02-7.62m
  • Throw Ratio: 1.8-2.1:1
  • XGA (1024x768) (native)/1280x1024 (resized)
  • Native Aspect Ratio: 4:3
  • Video Bandwidth: 110MHz
  • Display Format: 786,432 pixels
  • Max Sync Rate (VxH): 85Hz x 80kHz
  • 180 Watt bulb
  • Bulb life cycle: 3000 hour(s)/4000 hour(s) (economic mode)
  • Keystone correction
  • Low Power Mode, Closed Caption, wall colour correction, BrilliantColor, Colour Enhancer technology
  • Manual Focus
  • F/2.5-2.7
  • Manual Zoom, 1.2x
  • Ethernet
  • NTSC, SECAM, PAL, PAL-N, PAL-M, NTSC 4.43, PAL 60
  • RGB, S-Video, composite video
  • 480p, 720p, 1080i, 480i, 525i, 525p, 625p, 625i, 576i, 576p, 1080/60i, 1080/50i, 750p, 1125i
  • RGB
  • 320x236x104mm
  • 3.2kg

OUR VERDICT

A great all-rounder, the Mitsubishi XD221U is equally capable with slides and movies. It's easy to set up, and enjoys good picture settings and a useful remote. The Mitsubishi XD221U's image is also bright enough to see clearly in ambient light, but it's big and heavy, and runs hot to the touch with limited controls on unit.

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