MWSF 2010 Demo: Microvision's SHOWWX Laser Pico Projector

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Apr 12, 2001
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Microvision showed their SHOWWX which they described as the world's first laser pico projector. Like all pico projectors, the purpose of the device is to project video from your laptop or iPhone/iPod Touch to a wall or screen. The use of laser technology gives the SHOWWX a few advantages including being always in focus and vivid colors with a brightness of 10 lumens. A cable allows you to output video directly from the iPod touch or iPhone.



Article Link: MWSF 2010 Demo: Microvision's SHOWWX Laser Pico Projector
 

EdSasha

macrumors newbie
Feb 11, 2010
1
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Orthodox

macrumors newbie
Jan 7, 2010
13
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Microvision's Pico-P is already marketed in Asia and Spain. Due to appear in the US in March. I don't think the Aaxa is available anywhere yet - correction welcome.
They have it for sale on their site on pre-order but micro-projectors blog said someone got one already.

http://www.aaxatech.com/products/l1_laser_pico_projector.htm


Cnet says they ship out feb 12th (tomorrow). Mine is on order and i'm also a california local so I expect it very soon.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-10447529-1.html
 

jayducharme

macrumors 68040
Jun 22, 2006
3,679
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The thick of it
If Apple ever fully enables the output on the Touch/iPhone, the Pico projectors might actually be useful. For example, if I have a PowerPoint presentation in my e-mail, I can view it on my iPhone but it won't get sent to the video output. Or if I have an app that displays images or videos, those also don't output. Pictures (only when started at the beginning of the collection, for some odd reason) and videos are the only things that can be shown, and that seriously limits its usefulness.
 

yeknommonkey

macrumors member
Nov 24, 2008
37
25
approximate
Does this also work with the iPhone? Wonder if it will also work for iPad? If it works for both, I will buy one!
looks a pretty crummy picture, maybe better than iPhone for watching something longer,(not my choice though) but it certainly wouldn't be a better option than the iPad would it? it's got that lovely modern 4:3 ratio on it too!!;)
 

fixyourthinking

macrumors 6502a
Oct 24, 2002
665
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Greenville SC
looks a pretty crummy picture, maybe better than iPhone for watching something longer,(not my choice though) but it certainly wouldn't be a better option than the iPad would it? it's got that lovely modern 4:3 ratio on it too!!;)
While there certainly is a limitation to this hardware's size for quality at this point - internet video can never do something like this justice.

They should have filmed the video at 24 frames per sec so it wouldn't show the scan lines.
 

Sol

macrumors 68000
Jan 14, 2003
1,564
6
Australia
So far these tiny projectors seem like gimmicks. Maybe they will be more useful when they are built in to devices like phones, cameras, laptops, etc. Even then, they would still seem like solutions looking for problems.
 

Alvi

macrumors 65816
Oct 31, 2008
1,203
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Mars
Whatsup with that line that passes like twice a second, that's a bummer....
 

jared_kipe

macrumors 68030
Dec 8, 2003
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Seattle
While there certainly is a limitation to this hardware's size for quality at this point - internet video can never do something like this justice.

They should have filmed the video at 24 frames per sec so it wouldn't show the scan lines.
I was thinking the same thing.
 

MadeTheSwitch

macrumors 6502a
Apr 20, 2009
931
15,423
Whatsup with that line that passes like twice a second, that's a bummer....
Because of the way visual technology works, when you aim a video camera at a TV picture, or in this case, the projector, you get scan lines showing up that aren't apparent to your eye. You see this in TV news reports a lot whenever they are doing a story on televisions or computers. But, as long as you aren't pointing a camera at it, you're safe!

And yeah...if the makers of this pico projector wanted to showcase their product in the best light they really should have filmed it differently. Frankly, they should have known better.
 

Friscohoya

macrumors 6502a
Jun 16, 2009
708
0
Oaktown
Put one of these on the back of an iphone and one on the front that projected a touch sensitive keyboard and you would have a truly portable computer.
 

neutrino23

macrumors 68000
Feb 14, 2003
1,752
238
SF Bay area
The lines happen because the video camera and the projector are not in sync.

The video camera was not in their control. They were presenting on stage at MWSF in a session featuring new products. Everyone got up and had about five minutes to talk about their product.

This is an admirable first effort. In a very dark room the image is quite nice. The resolution is great for a projector this size (848 x 480). Someone in the booth said they are working on a 1280 x 720 version.

The image is nice and sharp projected on a white surface, it would look even better on a real screen. The image is always in focus (very nice) and the colors are great.

The down side is that it is not very bright. Even in a dim room I think you wouldn't want to go larger than about 20 inches. To be useful as an impromptu Keynote presenter it needs to be somewhat brighter. Overall though a great first effort. Very impressive. Very useful if you can control the room lights. No question.

As for the iPhone, you could export your Keynote as a QT movie which would be OK. You can also export it as a QT slide show. On a laptop you'd click to advance. Haven't tried that on the iPhone.

The iPad is still a question mark. It will be able to show a Keynote presentation. We won't know for another month or so whether that can be displayed on an external screen.
 

bit density

macrumors 6502
Mar 5, 2004
398
2
Seattle
if the makers of this pico projector wanted to showcase their product in the best light they really should have filmed it differently. Frankly, they should have known better.
And they do. It is called managing demand. Until they have the resources to fulfill almost any demand, they are throwing stuff out there to wow the pundits and investors.

The failure to meet demand is one of the most fatal things a company can do.

As the company matures, and eventually gets to either make it themselves, or others do it, the attract videos will become better and better. Because they know better.
 

Sol

macrumors 68000
Jan 14, 2003
1,564
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Australia
The iPad is still a question mark. It will be able to show a Keynote presentation. We won't know for another month or so whether that can be displayed on an external screen.
There is no mystery about it; the iPad specs page on Apple's site lists a Dock to VGA connector that can do 1024 X 768. I doubt an application like Keynote would be made for the iPad and not be able to output a slideshow.
 

Stingray454

macrumors 6502a
Sep 22, 2009
588
104
Probably not quite the same technique (DLP vs "laser projector"), but the technical specs seem about the same. I've been using one of these for over a year:

http://www.optoma.co.uk/Pico.aspx

I use it mainly in my summer house where I only have solar power - perfect to charge it during the day, and at night I watch movies through the iPhone or iPod that can connect directly to the projector. 10 lumens isn't much, but if it's really dark in the room it is no problem running about 60" image from the projector in clearly watchable quality. With a bit more light in the room (but still not daylight ofc), about 20" is possible. Plug it into a portable radio with AUX-in, and you got a nice home theater system that fits in your pocket :). Battery only lasts for about 1h though, but it ships with 2, so with a battery swap in the middle of the movie is often needed. Great fun with these things, can't wait for them to get even better, or get integrated into the iPhone.
 

Kristine22

macrumors newbie
Aug 14, 2011
1
0
Did they release it yet? I was under the impression than Aaxa is the first to release a laser projector?
Microvision showed its prototype laser-based projector two years ago at CES 2008. I had an experience to use it once and i should say that ShowWX itself is a little smaller and lighter than a typical smartphone.. i liked it.
 
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