The 3M Camcorder Projector: Share your photos and videos with everyone

Latest Gadgets If you have ever wanted to show the world just how great you are at taking pictures or shooting videos, the new 3M cp45 camera projector is the gadget for you. Instead of cramming around a tiny screen as you show your friends your latest snaps, with the cp45 you can use the built in projection technology to blow up your images and videos and share them for all to see.

3M-Camcorder

With the ability to take HD video images or 5Mp still photographs, the cp45 is small and light enough to fit in your pocket and carry around like a normal camera, thanks to a weight of 6.7 oz and dimensions that measure 4.9”L x 24”W x .94”H.

3M are targeting this range of mini projectors at a female market, although having seen their potential, there is no reason why other demographics would not be interested. The ability to project a picture or video makes them unique and is more than just a gimmick, making them ideal for more serious business use as well.

You can project your images on virtually any surface you could wish, and it is possible to reach an eye-popping size of 65in, ensuring nobody misses out on seeing the videos or pictures. Whether they like it or not.

Of course, said videos and pictures will take up memory, and the 2GB built in capacity is enough to store 25 minutes of video or 1,000 photos. A MicroSD card slot allows up to 32GB extra memory if needed.

A built-in microphone and speakers are the finishing touch to the projector, and you can record narrations to your pictures or moving images for a running commentary to proceedings. Your friends will love you for it. Possibly.

For more information, visit www.3MCamcorderProjector.com

3M Screen protection

Technology company 3M has got a new technology ready to make you feel like James Bond – a screen protector. Sure, it’s nothing out of Q’s lab – but these give you super-resistant, privacy-increasing films that are easy to apply.

3M-Screen

Fresh from 3M’s MISD – Mobile Interactive Solutions Division – the range comes in two lines – one that reduces the viewing angle to prevent prying eyes – and another that reduces glare from the sun, making it easier to read the phone in bright daylight.

Both screens have been designed to allow all of the brightness of the iPhone to pass through them, so you won’t lose any quality by increasing your security.

3M boasts that both screens can take all kind of knocks, including a phone’s arch rivals: pocket change and keys. In fact, according to this video, they’re even cat-proof:

The special films are available for either iPhones or tablet computers in pre-cut shapes. You can also purchase generic versions, which can be cut to fit any phone/tablet-sized device.

The surfaces also come with anti-soiling protection, which reduces fingerprints and oily marks left on the device. Sweet.

We tried out the scratch protection quality and – as dubious as we were dropping keys onto our iPhones – the screens did their job. The privacy filter is also pretty great – no-one on the underground had any idea of the kind of filth we were looking at.

Perfect.

3M PocketProjector MP180 review

The 3M PocketProjector MP180 is ridiculously small. When the review unit arrived out our door, we thought someone had delivered the projector’s power adapter. In fact, thanks to a built-in battery, the MP180 doesn’t even need a powerbrick. Having won us over on form, then, the question is: how well does it project?

3M-Pro-150

Size and Look

Just to reiterate: the PocketProjector MP180 is just 150x65x33mm and weighs 338g. You could – just about – fit one in your trouser pocket, although you’d be subjected to a barrage of “is that a projector in your pocket, or are you just pleased to see me?” jokes.

The device is also coated in an extremely pleasant rubberised coating – if you like your gadgets tactile, the MP180 is arguably the most stroke-friendly on the market.

The touchscreen controls, however, are less easy on the fingers. They’re a bit fiddly (using old-school resistive touch technology) and the menus can be confusing. There’s no dedicated home button, for example, which means a complete restart of the projector is needed when you’ve finished with the internet option. Annoying.

The whole interface looks incredibly old-school – although in an alienating, rather than endearing, way. To be honest, it felt like we should have been poking it with a stylus.

 Features

Once you learn how to access the features, you’ll realise that the device is packed with them. It can connect to your Wifi to projector webpages, while also play videos, music and pictures stored on the 4GB onboard memory  (or from the microSD card slot), as well as stream from Bluetooth and output Office documents.

Another killer-feature is the built-in battery, which allows in excess of two hours of projection on the go. When playing media off the device – rather than through a laptop VGA cable – this drops a bit, but it’s an impressive feat nonetheless. The bulb also lasts 20,000 hours – pretty impressive.

Quality

All these features would be for naught if the projection itself was terrible – which it isn’t. With a native output of 800×600 (and a maximum of 1280×800), the resolution is fine – the brightness, however, is questionable.

The 30 lumen lamp means that it’s great for dark environments – but in a well-lit conferencing room there would be little to see. Stretching beyond 80in is a definite mistake – as is projecting at an angle. There keystoning effect (where the top of the image expands disproportionately outwards) is extremely noticeable.

In optimal conditions – dark, about 60 inches from the wall and projected straight-on, the MP180 creates a bright and enjoyable (if a little fuzzy) image. The battery exceeds expectations and the huge range of features mean that there are definite pluses to the device.  Really – it’s a super, portable projector.

The issue is, with projectors like the only-a-bit-more-expensive (but not portable) Epson TW450 on the market, the projection of the tiny MP180 pales in comparison – even if the other features are noteworthy.

Latest Gadgets at the Gadget Show Live 2011

Latest Gadgets made its yearly pilgrimage to the Gadget Show Live in Birmingham to play with the latest and greatest tech that manufacturers had to offer. Fighting our way through the bear pit that is the coffee table in the press room, we emerged refreshed and ran around attempting to see as much as possible before the caffeine wore off.

Batman-Car

Our first stop was Brasso (covered here) who had a little stall set up to clean all our gadgets. As an owner of a filthy iPhone, iPad and pair of glasses it was nice to have someone give them a quick wipedown. Plus there was cake. Orbitsound had their T3 mobile stereo speaker on display – a little iPod classic shaped unit that provides stereo sound on the go – and that can be worn around the neck to create a sound aura. Amazing. Also a potential nightmare if young kids on London buses get hold of it.

Bamboo-Stylus

Wacom had just that day released a Bamboo stylus for the iPad. I’m keen doodler and had a quick play. It feels great to hold – and is very close to holding a real pen. It’s also 25 percent slimmer tip than main competitors as the reps insisted on telling me. The prototype app to accompany it (you can of course use the stylus with all drawing apps) looks pretty fun as well but wasn’t yet ready for final assessment. The stylus should be out in mid-May for about £25.

We waved at the people from 3M who were showing off their MPro 180 wireless pico projector rigged up to a PS3 and an iPad. We had a more in-depth look at it here. The most stylish area was the shiny white Golla zone where lots of beautiful people looked over enthusiastic about a range of pretty looking laptop bags and camera cases. We took a look at some here.

Cyngett-iPad-2-stand

iPad stands were ubiquitous, but the only one that actually caught our eye was Cygnett’s that had copied Apple’s Smart Cover technology (well the wake from sleep functionality) and added a stand that works vertically and horizontally – all in a big (and admittedly slightly bulky) leather case. They were stood next to Henge Docks – a great laptop dock that enabled you to use your MacBook with a Widescreen monitor and pretend you have a full desktop.  We also had a quick look at the PopBox – a self-styled “Apple TV” killer, that streams your HD content via DLNA and its own app store. And we also played with some wireless Jaybird headphones, the Qb desktop USB speakers and FlipVideo who surprisingly said nothing about their impending demise.

Of course this is a tiny fraction of what we had a play with so expect to see a few more in-depth articles over the coming week.

3M MP160 and MP180: Wireless pocket project-awe

I’m not going to lie to you: I am no entrepreneur. I am also not a businessman, a salesman, team leader, or one of those people that comes into your office twice a year in a vain attempt to make you ‘Expert’ level Excel. I think computer games are alright, but I certainly wouldn’t call myself a computer game ‘geek.’ I take pictures on trips, but am just self-aware enough to know that no-one- and I mean no-one, wants to come round to some godawful evening I where show them off and brag about how I found myself on some Scally-infected beach in South East Asia. I watch films occasionally, but normally only when I’m hungover and the concept of moving and engaging my brain in anything other than pretty people running around blowing stuff up and/or taking their clothes off is enough to make me reach for a warm tumbler of the previous nights rum. I am, in fact, the polar opposite of the target audience of the 3M MP160 and MP180 projector. When they had early board meetings and drew up all the different demographics of who they wanted to target, who they needed to appeal to make their projectors fly in the 21st century marketplace (not literally, though if it did I probably would be), I was so far off that whiteboard I might as well as have been at the bottom of the sea.

It is odd, therefore, that when I first read the press release of these brand new mobile projectors, I actually uttered the words; ‘that is so very useful.’

3M-projector

In a nutshell, the MP160 and MP180 are little baby projectors that you can carry around with you, in your briefcase/bag/lunchbox. They do not have an abundance of wires as you just charge the badboys before you need them , and they’ll run on their lonesomes for a healthy two hours (bit of a stitch if you’re up for a late night Passion Of The Christ fest, mind). You just plug them into your laptop, PC, smartphone, DVD player, TV, camcorder, basically anything with an output and boom, you have a wall-filling projection, with 30 lumens (I don’t know either) of brightness.

From what I can gather from this ‘ere press release, the M180 is for those of you that need a mini computer’s worth of info on you at all times. Its got 4GB of internal memory, and will take your micro SD card (good for those Full Moon Party pics), and USB so you can have all your stuff on you and be ready to present in the event of any emergency. It’s all controlled by a fancy touch screen, which comes further into its own when you consider the M180 has built in WiFi capability, so you can stream videos and such like from the internet. The fact it does all this and weighs only 338 grams and in a 150 mm x 65 mm x 33 mm package is something I find vaguely mindboggling and not dissimilar to the thoughts my oldest nephew would start experiencing if he tried to logically dissect the whole Santa Claus phenomenon.

The M160 is a little more straightforward; it has those all important 30 lumens (a unit of brightness for image quality – 30 is low for a real projector, which would output 2000, but ok for a mini one like this – Ed.), but it’s sans (French for without) the mobile office. So no Memory slot, internet, touch screen etc, but its still fine to hook up to other devices and will project games, videos and pictures onto walls, ceilings etc. It’s a more everyday and, though prices haven’t been confirmed yet, it is estimated that this will be reflected in its lower $349 price (as opposed to $399 for the 180).

All in all, if you are the sort of person that’s going to use one of these, it seems like a no-brainer. The only sticking point would seem to be the battery life, but you can just whack that on charge so lets not get bogged down in that eh? I won’t lie and say that I’ll be getting one (unless 3M want to send me one- nudge nudge, wink wink), but for those that need projections and entertainment on the go, these would seem to be your next port of call.

3M MPro150 – The future of the present(ation)

When I think of projectors I’m reminded of the huge Over Head Projectors we used in French class, or the bulky noisy devices that we used to screen a film at the end of term. Admittedly I haven’t really kept up with projector technology since but from time to time I’ve been subjected to a slide show presentation and projectors remain theses sizable devices whirring away at the back of the room. So when the 3M MPRO150 arrived at my desk, half of my excitement was in holding the thing. A micro projector, it really is small – only slightly bigger than an old candy bar Nokia. It definitely has the feel of a robustly built hi-tech gizmo, although the MPRO150 is no toy.

MPRO150-Micro-Projector

Being the n3rd that I am I threw away the instruction manual and attempted to simply use the device – with great success. Attaching a USB cable allows you to open the MPRO150 like a USB drive and simply drag and drop files onto the device. Anyone who has used a pen drive in the last 10 years should be comfortable with loading files onto the built in memory (which is 1Gb but there is also a micro SD card slot to you can expand the device’s capacity). After that you can simply unplug the device, point it at a wall and before you can even say “Boom” you will be able to give a slideshow presentation.

I found the MPRO150 a bit fussy with regards to file formats – *.pngs wouldn’t load and some *.jpegs wouldn’t display. Most worked perfectly however and I gave a 50” display of my holiday snaps. Despite just using a white wall the image quality was superb. Pdfs, MS Office files and most images were fine. It also plays back *.avi files, which I found pretty amazing – I projected an episode of Sealab 2021 onto my wall and it worked flawlessly. 3M also threw in a mp3 player just for fun – ostensibly so you can relax listening to some music on the way to a presentation but I have no idea why anyone would do this instead of using any of the multitude of other devices they have for this purpose. Still it works.

The MPRO150 comes with a little tripod and a built in stand as well as lots of connector. You can hook it up to pretty much anything – desktops, laptops or iPhones but for me the real magic of the device is to just use it as a standalone presentation tool. It’s so small that it can easily pop in a briefcase – or even a suit jacket. I loaded up the MPRO150 with my Cymande.ppt (Brothers on The Slide) presentation and was able to get 2 hours battery life out of it. The built in speakers won’t blow you away but it is easy enough to connect to a remote device.
“To mark its launch we are giving our customers the chance to win £500 of iwantoneofthose vouchers and one of 10 MPro150s,” said Nick Hughes, Marketing Manager for 3M’s Mobile Interactive Solutions Division. “To enter, go to our mobile u web site and simply tell us in 50 words or less the most memorable, funny or embarrassing presentation you’ve delivered or seen. One winner will also be made into a short viral video, which the winner can star in if they wish.”

Ideal for business folk “on the move” but also pretty cool for anyone who would like to project a 50” photo, movie or slideshow onto a wall, the 3M MPro150 is now available to pre-order from shop3M.com, amazon.co.uk and selected high street retailers including Dixons Travel and Micro Anvika at an RRP of £349.99 including VAT.