Assume transportable projector and it’s doubtless that the stubby, cylindrical type of the Anker Nebula Capsule II will spring to thoughts. Well-known for its ‘go tenting and undertaking it on the facet of your tent’ advertising and marketing, it’s the primary port of name for the would-be journey projector purchaser.
This gadget is one in all three Nebula Capsule projectors made by Anker Improvements, and its 720p decision, 200 ANSI-lumens gentle output and Android TV 9.zero good platform make it the top-spec mannequin of that trio.
These little extras value cash, although, to the purpose that the value of the Nebula Capsule II comes near that of a few of Anker’s higher-end Go Anyplace fashions.
The Anker Nebula Capsule II prices £550 ($530). In the event you’re joyful to drop all the way down to a cellular OS within the form of Android 8.1, then the Nebula Capsule Max presents some financial savings at £480 ($420) whereas conserving most of the identical key specs
The infant of the bunch is the unique Nebula Capsule, which prices £340 ($280) however is just rated at 100 ANSI-lumens. It additionally comes with a most output decision of 854 x 480 and a much less highly effective 5W sound system in comparison with the 8W of the opposite two.
The construct of the Nebula Capsule II could be its finest aspect. It’s not simply the compact dimension of the gadget, it’s the solidity, sturdiness and form that make it so transportable. It’ll slot in any bag and even a coat pocket or a desk drawer. There’s no water or shock-proof certification, but it surely’s nicely made sufficient to outlive just a few bumps, bruises and brushes with spilled drinks.
The one added safety we’d wish to see is a sliding lens cap, however as long as you keep away from placing the Nebula in the identical compartment as keys and cash, you need to have little to fret about.
Inside is a one-chip DLP projection answer, backed by that 200 ANSI-lumen LED gentle and a single driver 8W sound system for the audio. There are 4 sockets of be aware on the rear: an HDMI 1.Four enter, a USB sort A for flash drives, a USB-C for charging and a 3.5mm headphone-out. There are some management buttons on the highest and one for energy on the rear, however the small voice-operated distant management shall be your primary interface.
Video and music streaming companies are choice for the Anker Nebula Capsule II, with its Android TV 9.zero OS providing entry to over 5000 apps on the Google Play retailer.
Anker Nebula Capsule II tech specs
Inputs HDMI 1.4, USB-A, Bluetooth
Decision 720p, 1080p enter
Brightness 200 ANSI-lumens
Throw ratio 1.3:1
Battery life 2.5 hrs (eco mode)
So long as you’re in vary of a wi-fi community, the likes of Twitch, Hulu, Plex, YouTube, Tidal, Spotify, BT Sport and Amazon Prime Video are all on the menu. Chromecast will stream most different apps, together with All 4, BBC iPlayer, Rakuten and Now, but it surely’s not potential to forged both Netflix or Apple TV.
The Nebula Supervisor Android app brings a cellular model of Netflix together with an online browser and an app for mirroring content material from iOS units. As with different Nebula projectors, although, it’s not the very best Netflix expertise. Navigation can solely be completed by the Nebula Controller app, which might be fairly irritating. A lot of the content material shouldn’t be even at Full HD ranges both, however that’s much less of a difficulty for the Capsule II given it will probably solely output at as much as 720p.
In some respects, sideloading native recordsdata onto the Capsule’s 8GB inner area or taking part in media from a flash drive are the higher choices, though that does depend on a good and up-to-date supply of downloadable content material.
There’s a battery onboard for that true portable projector expertise, which lasts 2.5 hours at low brightness – simply don’t count on way more than half that at full brightness.
Organising the Capsule II is simple. It boasts a one-second autofocus function, which, although it takes multiple second, is simple to manually regulate if wanted. There’s no auto-keystone function and no horizontal motion of the image in any respect. You may nonetheless regulate the vertical aircraft, but it surely’s not the very best system. Fortuitously, the gadget is so small and simple to prop up that setting it as much as undertaking straight on within the first place isn’t a lot of an issue.
As with most transportable projectors, it’s a hard and fast lens gadget, so no zooming out and in. It has a 1.3:1 throw ratio and might create an image between 20-100 inches. Anker recommends a projection distance of between 40-80 inches for finest outcomes and meaning an on-screen picture of 36-71 inches. Whereas there’s positively just a little extra sharpness and element available in Anker’s candy spot, a 100-inch image nonetheless appears to be like good, notably provided that, at solely 720p, that is removed from a hi-res expertise.
You gained’t get an image from a 4K enter and there’s no HDR for the Nebula Capsule II both, however despite the fact that 720p is its most output decision, it will probably nonetheless deal with a Full HD sign.
Whereas all of this sounds cheap, it’s value noting that the Anker Nebula Capsule II prices just about the identical as each the Nebula Solar Portable and the Nebula Mars II Professional transportable projectors. These two different machines have related options however supply much more in the way in which of luminance (400 and 500 ANSI-lumens respectively). On prime of that, the Mars II’s sound system is even beefier (2x 10W) and the decision on the Photo voltaic goes as much as Full HD with HDR and help for 4K inputs.
After all, each of those extra midrange portables are greater, however they may nonetheless simply slot in a backpack. In the end, it is a selection between additional portability and additional efficiency.
There’s a delightful sufficient tonal steadiness to the early scenes of The Martian on Blu-ray when downscaled to the Nebula Capsule II’s 720p output. Black depth is cheap, and there’s sufficient talent with darkish particulars within the shadows made by the cruel daylight on the purple planet’s floor. There’s an evenness to the dealing with of blended lighting with variations within the reds and oranges and a few granular texture to the sand and rocks.
Colors work nicely too. It’s simple to impress with these off-world hues, however extra prosaic staples akin to grass and bushes within the scene on the cemetery look appropriate too. That is one thing of a reduction provided that the one picture setting out there is Color Temperature. Select ‘Cool’ for the very best efficiency potential out of this gadget.
Some sort of movement processing choice could be helpful, provided that motion shouldn’t be dealt with nicely by the native capabilities of the Capsule II – it’s considerably worse than the Mars and Photo voltaic units on this entrance. Even sluggish pans are fairly juddery with a Full HD supply and Watney’s panicked actions don’t look fairly proper.
Issues look smoother at normal definition as we watch Minority Report on DVD, whilst Tom Cruise waves his arms about on the well-known gesture UI. The small print on the actor’s face are fairly spectacular too – his stubble is evident and there are not any distracting artefacts.
Distinction management takes a little bit of a dive, as darkish and light-weight areas develop into oversimplified. The sky is a uniform white as Cruise and the Pre-Crime unit make their raid at first of the movie, and any element within the backstreet scene the place the protagonist buys his medicine is misplaced to a single-tone shadow.
Turning the lights up reveals how little luminance there’s to play with right here. Anticipate to lose loads of the motion each time there’s ambient lighting. That’s not a giant drawback should you’re taking the Capsule II out tenting within the countryside, however except your backyard is extraordinarily darkish, you may wrestle with outside cinema use.
As with most transportable projectors, the Anker Nebula Capsule II has a facet hustle as a Bluetooth speaker and it’ll nearly out-perform a cell phone.
It scores finest for dynamics. The opening part of Biffy Clyro’s Many Of Horror is especially pleasant. The vocals are expressive and the observe has sense of depth and separation with the phrases, the straightforward drum beat and the lead guitar, and it builds properly and with function in direction of the primary refrain.
From thereon in, the weaknesses of this mono system develop into uncovered. It’s not a very agile performer and it doesn’t have the steadiness or depth to cease all the things from turning into cluttered because the rhythm guitar and extra vigorous percussion kick in. The devices battle to be heard within the slim midrange and treble candy spots and the very best moments of this tune develop into largely misplaced.
Whereas it’s a notable failure on the music entrance, this presentation isn’t such a foul compromise for movie. The dimensions and texture of the audio within the opening of The Martian works nicely. The easy rating swells and shrinks with the drama, the midrange is nice sufficient to convey the emotion and a few texture to dialogue and there’s nearly sufficient precision for the Capsule to painting the grit of the sandstorm. We will hear particular person particles hitting the steel of the Mars Ascent Automobile (MAV), and that’s ok to not detract from the leisure. It’s just a little vivid however satisfactory.
As with the Biffy observe, although, large motion scenes don’t come off too nicely – when the MAV jets burst into life, the Capsule’s grip is misplaced – however such moments are pretty few.
The Nebula Capsule II shouldn’t be a foul projector. It isn’t buggy, neither is it lacking any vital options. It isn’t horribly imbalanced for image and sound and we are able to think about stress-free into a wonderfully good mini cinema expertise on the go together with it. But it surely’s just too costly and significantly better image efficiency is out there on the identical value from the likes of the Nebula Mars II and Nebula Solar Portable.
If transportable comfort is your prime concern, then you definitely may select the Capsule II over the others. Nevertheless, we’d must see it considerably discounted earlier than we might wholly advocate it.
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