updated 01:40 pm EDT, Tue May 19, 2009
Sanyo Draft N projector
Sanyo has recently announced the upcoming release of its PLC-WXU700 LCD projector in the US. The company claims the device is the world's first with 802.11n Wi-Fi. Hooking it up to a Windows Vista PC will turn it into a network projector, capable of streaming videos at a native widescreen 1280x800 resolution; other operating systems can use the networking for non-streaming control. The portable projector sports a 500:1 contrast ratio and weighs less than 8lbs. Sanyo says its 3,800 lumens brightness makes it the brightest in its class.
The PLC-WXU700 can stream MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4 and WMV format videos. Advanced video streaming further allows videos that aren't completely downloaded to the projector to begin playback. Images or videos stored on a connected USB drive can be displayed, negating the need for a PC for content. A Sanyo USB stick will create a connection between the projector and a wireless-enabled PC or Mac independently of the built-in Wi-Fi.
The 275W lamp does not need to be cooled before the power is turned off or the projector is unplugged from a wall socket. There is a 1.6x optical zoom lens as well as picture-in-picture and vertical keystone correction. Images can be magnified to as little as 40 inches or as many as 300.
Video inputs on the PLC-WXU700 include HDMI, VGA, S-video and composite. There is a VGA output as well to relay video to a second screen, along with an RS-232 port, an Ethernet jack and both mini and full-size USB ports.
Sanyo will begin shipping the PLC-WXU700 to the US in June, when it sells for $2,995.