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Anker Nebula Capsule II R2-D2 Tiny Edition review: The Force is solid with this one

This small projector packs a immense punch, right bask in its droid namesake. Nonetheless most appealing hardcore followers will tolerate the upsell.

anker nebula r2 d2 oblique

Michael Brown / IDG

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  • Anker Nebula Capsule II R2-D2 Tiny Edition

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After I heard Anker change into as soon as popping out with an R2-D2 Tiny Edition of its dazzling Nebula Capsule II video projector, I hoped it would impress exactly bask in the illustration on its field, but in shade. Alas, the shade is there, however the R2-D2 remedy is ideal a paint job on the present projector, making the $120 upsell over the trail-of-the-mill Nebula Capsule II—$700 versus $580—a small bit exhausting to swallow.

Other than the paint create, the right other feature that informs you right here’s a Huge title Wars-inspired dwelling-theater tool is the beep-beep-boop sound the projector makes when first powered up. Yes, it sounds exactly bask in the loveable droid, but that’s the right time you’ll hear it.

anker nebula r2 d2 box Michael Brown / IDG

I change into as soon as hoping the restricted-version R2-D2 Nebula video projector would impress right bask in what’s printed on the field, but in shade. The shade is there, but that’s it.

Android TV—and plenty more

The Nebula II within reason highly efficient for its dimension, particularly as soon as you assign in solutions that it’s fully self-contained, with Android TV 9.0; Google Assistant; Chromecast; a self-amplified, 8-watt speaker; and a Wi-Fi adapter onboard. It could most likely possibly possibly possibly trail on AC or battery energy (as a lot as 2.5 hours within the latter instance), and its DLP engine delivers as a lot as a 100-plod characterize in 720p resolution with a decent brightness of 200 lumens. The right ingredient you’ll must offer is a projection floor. You’ll need something white and non-reflective for that: a bed sheet or a matte-white-painted wall would enact in a pinch; I evaluated its performance with a tripod-mounted Epson ELPSC80 projection show.

In addition to to to its onboard media sources, the Nebula II additionally an HDMI port with ARC, and a USB port for streaming media from a flash memory tool (drives as a lot as 2TB are supported). There’s a Bluetooth radio in there, too. Vitality is supplied by a USB charging port with Vitality Shipping to price its battery more . A too-instant (3-foot) USB-C cable and USB-PD AC adapter are integrated within the field, as is an infrared distant withhold watch over. The distant has a directional pad, volume withhold watch over, and dwelling-show buttons for navigating Android TV and the projector’s secure settings, plus a button to summon Google Assistant.

anker nebula remote Michael Brown / IDG

It’s doubtless you’ll possibly possibly also summon Google Assisteant with the Anker Nebula II’s distant withhold watch over.

The usage of the Nebula II

It’s doubtless you’ll possibly possibly also perform the projector on a tabletop, but a higher solution would be to take aid of the 1/4-plod thread mount within the backside of the enclosure and mount it to a tripod. That’s what I did, and it made it so essential more uncomplicated to blueprint shut the tool to the optimum height and to stage it (it doesn’t have adjustable feet for that reason). In addition to to to front projection, the Nebula II can additionally be configured for rear projection, and it goes to invert the characterize so possibilities are you’ll possibly possibly possibly also mount it from the ceiling in front of or within the serve of the show.

I mandatory most appealing eight feet of distance from the show to venture a 72-plod characterize, and I took aid of the computerized point of curiosity and keystone adjustments to present clear that the characterize looked its most appealing.

On startup, the projector’s auto-point of curiosity feature analyzes its logo projected on the show to present the right adjustment in about one 2nd. Whenever you’re now no longer proud of the consequence, or you growth the projector, possibilities are you’ll possibly possibly possibly also call up a more detailed characterize and both point of curiosity manually or repeat the auto-point of curiosity. Either skill, the point of passion is a small bit refined in comparison with a TV, but that’s the character of the technology—and the resolution.

anker nebula threaded mount Michael Brown / IDG

This 1/4-plod thread mount makes it easy to install the Nebula II on a tripod or the ceiling for front or rear projection.

There’s an computerized keystone-adjustment feature as effectively, and it change into as soon as equally instant to bring the factual surroundings after I purposely distorted it the use of the handbook controls. I don’t think any individual will secure it mandatory to present handbook point of curiosity or keystone adjustments, since the computerized tools work reasonably effectively. I could possibly possibly possibly instruct the similar for the shade temperature adjustments of “heat,” “common” (the default), or “wintry.” I came all the best intention thru it complex to discern the distinction between the latter two settings, and I didn’t bask in the outcomes “heat” delivered.

Video and audio performance

Now, 200 lumens of brightness isn’t a sort of light. You’ll secure no shortage of AC-powered projectors offering 10 times the lumens, but they obviously don’t trail on battery energy and aren’t on the subject of as self-contained. All that talked about, I tested the projector in my dwelling theater at night time and change into as soon as blissful with the outcomes.

Staring at motion photos on this class of projector is nothing bask in staring at on a excessive-discontinue TV. The resolution is lower, for one ingredient, and the Nebula II doesn’t toughen any HDR codecs (and it’s now no longer luminous ample to bring them anyway). It change into as soon as typically unusable in the end of the sunlight hours unless I closed the Graber room-darkening motorized shades on the two dwelling windows in that room.

In a suitably darkish room, the Nebula II delivered a satisfying characterize with moderately effectively-saturated shade. The foremost goal, as I talked about earlier, change into as soon as a small bit refined, but now no longer objectionably so. And even with the Huge title Wars top price integrated, getting a 72-plod characterize this skill is without problems a couple of thousand dollars more cost effective than buying for a in an identical intention sized flat-show TV.

anker nebula r2 d2 ports Michael Brown / IDG

You’ll secure the total ports you’ll need on the Nebula II, together with HDMI ARC.

Nonetheless the feature that surprised me the most, to be merely, change into as soon as the projector’s audio quality. A single speaker plus a passive radiator for enhanced bass response delivered a robustly satisfying audio performance with a 270-diploma sound subject that without problems fooled my ears into thinking the audio change into as soon as emanating from the show eight feet away and now no longer the projector that change into as soon as inches from my seating win 22 situation. And as soon as you truly prefer to win crazy, keep in mind that there’s ARC toughen onboard (and likewise possibilities are you’ll possibly possibly possibly also secure up a 15-foot HDMI cable for under $15).

The backside line

The Nebula II is a small bit costly inquisitive about its brightness and backbone, but trace me the same tool that delivers the similar mix of leisure substances that can match in a backpack and perform off the grid for higher than two hours. I’d without problems award that product four stars. Nonetheless unless you’re a dyed-in-the-wool Huge title Wars fanatic, it’s exhausting to define the upcharge for this R2-D2 model—no topic how restricted of an version it’s miles—so I’m docking it a half of-necessary person.

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  • Anker Nebula Capsule II R2-D2 Tiny Edition

    This chase-anywhere video projector is a immense entertainer, however the Huge title Wars tie-in pushes its designate designate to a galaxy a ways, distant.

    Execs

    • A sexy all-in-one entertainer
    • All the things’s onboard: Android TV, Chromecast, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, HDMI ARC…
    • Can perform on battery energy for 2.5 hours

    Cons

    • Huge title Wars tie-in balloons the designate designate
    • 720p resolution
    • 200 lumens of brightness
    • No HDR toughen

Michael covers the neat-dwelling, dwelling-leisure, and dwelling-networking beats, working within the neat dwelling he built in 2007.

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