Canon LV-X5

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Canon LV-X5

Pros

  • Wide array of connectivity options, easy set up

Cons

  • Average image quality, Not bright enough, Awkward calibration options, Speakers are sub-par.

Bottom Line

The Canon LV-X5's average performance and features don't stack up well against lower-priced competitors that provide better image quality.

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The 3kg, LCD-based Canon LV-X5 is slightly larger than the most compact portables we have reviewed but it provides a slew of connectivity options, including two connections for linking to different computers and a third connection for hooking up an external monitor. In addition, it has two sets of inputs for connecting two audio sources.

Unfortunately, in our performance tests at its default settings, the LV-X5 turned in lackluster scores. Its overall rating was about average, but at the low end of the models we have tested. Though its brightness (rated at 1500 lumens) is sufficient for small-group presentations, we were less impressed with this projector's plain white screen than with competing (and often brighter) models. The LV-X5 also struggled with our grayscale gradient tests and had difficulty displaying some of the lightest and darkest shades. Text screens were legible, but not as crisp as we'd have expected.

A large zoom lever and a smooth focus ring, along with simple controls on the top panel, permit easy setup. The on-screen menu was reasonably easy to use, but it overlapped the image so we couldn't see the effects of various adjustments. Canon offers five factory presets for selecting optimized images (standard, presentation, cinema, video, and sRGB), plus a sixth mode that's user adjustable. Though we used the default (standard mode) for our formal tests, switching to other picture modes helped improve various images in our informal tests.

The LV-X5's remote has several buttons - for page up and page down, and for mouse clicking - that don't work with this projector, though they do function with other Canon projectors. Besides lacking mouse control, the LV-X5 has no pointer and no one-touch button for changing the picture mode. Another gripe: The built-in (1-watt) speaker was less powerful than we had expected.

Only a computer (VGA) cable is included in the box, so you'll need to obtain additional cables to connect the LV-X5 to other video and audio equipment.

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