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Dell 3400MP Projector
Displays | First Looks
Thu 25 Aug 2005



Road Warrior’s Best Companion
 

"Light, bright, ultra portable and really affordable - it's hard to find others with all these qualities" 

 
The Dell 3400MP comes with a variety of video input connections.

 
As with all Dell projectors, the 3400MP comes with a cool-looking hardshell carrying case.


The Dell 3400MP weighs a mere 1.09kg and can be easily handled with one hand.



For practicality and convenience sake, an ideal portable projector should be small, lightweight and should preferably come with an integrated speaker for complimentary background music. Just being 'portable' may not be enough these days because to the marketing and sales executive folks in the fast lane, a really ultra-portable projector is likely the next best companion to their laptop for presentation and sales pitches to a large audience. One such petite projector with all these lovable traits is the Dell 3400MP.

The Dell Wonder

As with all Dell projectors, the Dell 3400MP comes with a cool-looking hard-shell carrying case with cushioning that protects the projector from small, unintended impacts that might occur while traveling. Setting up the projector is fairly simple. For connectivity, the rear panel includes a pair of 3.5mm audio connectors, one M1-DA connector (for Component, DVI and Analog VGA input), S-Video and Composite inputs. That makes the Dell 3400MP perhaps one of the smallest projector models in the market that sports all possible video input connections. Controls are located on top of the projector where a glossy black console gives access to navigate through the projector controls.

Dell provided a M1-DA to D-sub/USB cable that not only conveys video signals to the projector, but also transforms the remote control into a wireless mouse (courtesy of the controls on the remote) for navigating through the computer desktop. The remote control comes with a built-in a laser pointer, and has a one-button access to setup options like Keystone correction and changing video modes.

Small but Powerful

The Dell 3400MP's projection is quite bright considering its small size. At 1500 lumens, you can conduct your presentations even if there's ambient lighting. During our tests, we were pretty impressed viewing presentations with large fonts though we had minor complains when viewing with smaller fonts. Still, that shouldn't bother viewers as it is not discernible at a distance. At default settings, the colors displayed weren't satisfactory but after some tweaking with individual color adjustments, watching a DVD in movie mode resulted in fairly accurate color representation with good distinctions between the shades. The only notable downside of this projector is the perceptible rainbow effect that plagues darker areas of the images, as well as the edges of moving objects. As such, we wouldn't recommend using it as an entertainment tool.

Recommendations

An XGA projector of this class and size usually costs in the range between US$1500 to about US$2500. The Dell 3400MP's retail price is US$1399, excluding the online discounts. If you are looking for a miniature projector, there aren't many with the dimensions of the Dell 3400MP, weighing just 1.1kg and supporting all possible video input options. As a portable business projector for basic presentations, the Dell 3400MP presents itself as the best value for money projector a busy executive on the move can have. For entertainment needs however, there are others that are designed to meet that function.

 

Product Specifications

  • Technology: DLP

  • Brightness: 500 ANSI lumens

  • Contrast Ratio: 2100:1

  • Native Resolution: 1024 x 768
  • Data Compatibility: Up to 1600 x 1200 (compressed)
  • Video Compatibility:  PAL (B/D/G/H/I/M/N), SECAM (B/D/G/K/K1/L), NTSC, NTSC4.43

  • Projection Distance: 1.5m – 12m

  • Optical Zoom: 1.15x
  • Projection Noise: 38dB (37dB in low mode)

  • Lamp Life: 3000 hours (4000 hours in Eco mode)

  • Connections: M1-DA (for Component, VGA and DVI inputs), S-Video, Composite, Audio

  • Dimensions & Weight: 204 x 154 x 74mm

  • Weight: 1.09kg

  • Price: US$1399 (discounts available for online purchase)