XGIMI H2 review: the projector with Android and Harman Kardon audio

XGIMI is certainly not one of the best known brands. This is a very young Chinese company that has thrown itself overbearingly into the smart projector market by launching models with top-of-the-line hardware features and not so low prices. Let's discover together XGIMI H2, one of the top models of the XGIMI catalog. Packaging The package does not hide particular surprises, but it is still designed to protect the projector in the best way and can therefore also be used to transport it to other locations (there are no handles). Inside we find the projector, the remote control, the power cable and the power supply. You don't need anything else, since in fact H2 has Google's green robot as its operating system and at the audio level it has its own speaker. No batteries for the remote control: you will need two AAA batteries. Construction XGIMI H2 looks like an elegant sidereal gray "monolith". We are talking about an object with a base height of 13.50 cm (20.10 x 20.10 cm) weighing about 2 kg. Certainly it does not go unnoticed, but inside it contains a lot of technology. On the back we find all the ports it is equipped with: in addition to the power supply we have two HDMI, one USB 3.0, one USB 2.0, an ethernet port, a 3.5 mm audio jack and an optical output. From this point of view, nothing is really missing. The rear part also houses the projector fan. Attention, this is an essential component for the correct functioning of the device. When deciding where to place it, consider leaving the projector the possibility of "breathing", given the amount of hot air expelled from the perforated sections. In general the fan does not emit such noise as to disturb the viewing of multimedia contents (also considering the power of the integrated speaker). Only in certain situations, such as for software updates, it is activated to the maximum making itself noticed more than necessary. If you leave sufficient ventilation to the device, the fan will almost never need to work at maximum power. The lower part, in addition to the supporting feet, houses a Harman Kardon stereo loudspeaker (the well-known brand is also mentioned on the front of the device) and the insert where to screw up a possible projector stand. The upper base hosts some commands for navigation and management of multimedia contents available however also on the remote control (except one). In addition to the power button we find a touch bar for volume adjustment, Play buttons and next media track and a button with a musical note. XGIMI H2 can in fact also be used as a Bluetooth speaker, and thanks to the button we turn off the projection and leave the device active for any music reproduction. The front part, in addition to the lens from which it projects the image, also houses a camera useful for automatic focusing. The remote control is particularly compact and elegant and, as mentioned, contains all the essential commands for browsing the contents. Thanks to the button with the mouse symbol you can use it as a pointer (not too accurate for the truth, but usable); with the directional cross and the central button you navigate in the operating system and among the various multimedia contents without any kind of input lag; and under the Home and Back buttons, just like a classic smartphone or Android-based system. There is also the volume rocker. In the lower side there is also a switch for adjusting the fire, but we must admit that we have never needed it. Hardware We have already mentioned what are the ports on the device. Now let's go into more detail by going into the data sheet: Processor: Mstar838 Cortex-A53 GPU: Mail-T820 RAM: 2 GB Internal memory: 16 GB (5 GB occupied by the system) Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.0, wi-fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac Objective: high-transparency coated glass lens Display chip: 0.47-inch DMD RGB-LED Resolution: full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) Keystone correction: vertical +/- 45 °, horizontal + / – 45 ° Brightness: 1350 ANSI Lumen Contrast Ratio: 5000: 1 Projection Distance: from 1 to 5.5 m Image Size: from 60 to 300 ″ Image Formats: JPG, JPEG, BMP, GIF, PNG, GIF Video formats: MPG, AV, TS, MOV, MKV, DAT, MP4, VOB, 1080P Audio formats: MP3, DTS, MP1, MP2, MP3, WMA Other: 3D support, auto focus, automatic keystone correction, compensation of the movement, speaker Harman Kardon, front camera for focusing As mentioned, XGIMI H2 is missing very little from a point of vi is technical. The internal memory may seem limited but it should be enough for the Android apps to be installed. Do not underestimate the presence of two USB ports on the back: in addition to being able to use them to connect mouse and keyboard and further facilitate navigation, you can also use them to connect external storage media and use the projector as a sort of Android TV. The processor and the RAM perform well in practically every occasion: we have in fact never encountered problems with fluidity. About the HDMI ports, in fact it is possible to connect any type of device. You can use all the current generation consoles, even 3D Blu-ray players (since there is precisely 3D support), desktop PCs or laptops. Audio-video quality We have to admit to being surprised by the audio-video quality of this XGIMI H2. Given the price range is not entirely accessible it was reasonable to expect a quality product, but you never know. The fact is that, thanks to the degree of brightness of the projector (1,350 ANSI Lumens) and the powerful speaker Harman Kardon in the lower part, it really seems to be in the cinema. And you don't need particularly huge rooms to make the most of the projector and the size that can be reached by the projected screen. Our tests were carried out on completely white walls, without the support of special projection sheets, and the result obtained is more than satisfactory. Consider that 2.5 meters between the projector and the wall is sufficient to obtain the dimensions of an 82 ″ screen; to climb to around 110 ″ you need 3.10 m while to reach 124 ″ it takes about 3.40 meters. Now, the maximum supported size would be 300 ″ but we assure you that it is already difficult to imagine a 124 ″ TV (you need a nice free wall), let alone a 300 ″. And even at 124 "(imagine a television with a diagonal of 3.14 m. Done? That's more than enough …) the projected content does not lose any quality. We enjoyed movies and TV series and the overall quality is comparable to that of a good television panel. And obviously consider that a TV of this size would cost you an impossible amount. Obviously the worse image quality gradually moving more and more the projector from the surface on which to project, but with the measures that we have just listed you don't notice big differences. It is equally obvious that in order to obtain the best possible image quality, an environment with poor or even completely absent lighting is required. And don't worry about eye fatigue: projecting a 124 ″ screen, the room will seem to be lit up! As also reported in the technical data sheet, the projector is equipped with functions for automatic focusing and for keystone correction. In all the contexts in which we have used it we have never needed to adjust neither the fire nor to correct the trapezoidal distortions. In this regard, you may notice a camera in front. The projector uses it precisely for autofocus. As for the audio quality, the Harman Kardon 16 watt stereo speaker manages to surprise positively, guaranteeing more than satisfactory audio for both watching movies and listening to music. Obviously, given that the XGIMI H2 itself is a niche device, it is very likely that a possible buyer has a dedicated audio system with an extremely better yield. In this case the optical audio output of the XGIMI home device comes to your rescue. As mentioned then you can also use the projector in Bluetooth speaker mode thanks to the appropriate button on the same projector. Software The software is simultaneously one of the merits and one of the defects of the XGIMI home projector. On board there is a custom version of Android 6.0, which we suspect may in part be taken from Android TV. After the first power-up, you will immediately notice the absence of the Play Store. Aptoide takes his place: this should already be enough to understand the software situation on the device. Obviously Aptoide has only a selection of apps, and the most important ones don't work properly. Forget about installing Netflix or Amazon Prime Video, they won't work. Even from Chrome you won't be able to start the two services. The only solutions are therefore to rely on a Chromecast (you can connect it via HDMI on the back of the projector) or to a fixed PC / laptop connected to HDMI. What is the reason for the suspicion that it may be a version derived from Android TV? Partly from the YouTube app, which is clearly that of Android TV. But it's more like a specific clue to make us suspect. An app like that of Plex is not available on Aptoide. If you look for Plex download on Google (from the integrated version of Chrome) and select the version dedicated to Android TV, the system will open the link … via the Play Store! So yes, the Play Store is there but it is hidden in some way. You cannot then add a shortcut on the desktop. To reach it, search for apps from Google, open the Play Store link and a button should appear on the bottom of the screen to open them with the Play Store. Obviously not all of them are available, but Plex was able to install it and use it without any problem. In addition, the Italian language also arrived with the latest update. Some translations may leave something to be desired but on the whole we cannot complain. The choice of options is also more than discreet, including the option to decide which device to start the projector with. You can actually jump to the installed operating system and start everything using other devices connected via HDMI. Among the pre-installed software there are the aforementioned Chrome and Aptoide, a file manager, WPS Office and an application that seems so much a sort of Clean Master that it is better not to use. To reinforce the software there is also an application to download on smartphones (Android and iOS) that allows you for example to easily view videos and photos on your mobile device on the projector, to set the 3D (obviously with a Blue reader -ray 3D or with special files), to navigate as you would with the remote control, to listen to the tracks saved locally and much more. It is not the best app in the world, but it is still an extra that can come in handy on certain occasions. Well but not very well in conclusion, especially considering that an XGIMI model with its own Android TV and Google Assistant is about to arrive. The only real unknown concerns the updates: we do not know what XGIMI's long-term intentions are. Price XGIMI H2 is perhaps not a product for all budgets, but given the possibilities offered by the software and its in fact wanting to replace a classic living room smart TV, a list price of € 999 is perhaps not so high, considering that it is can project a "screen" of over 120 "without too many difficulties. On GearBest however it is also found at lower prices. This is the Global version, perfect therefore also for the Italian market. Purchase Photos XGIMI H2

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