Anker Nebula Mars II Pro review: a portable and versatile 720p Led projector

The Anker Nebula Mars II Pro projector has a Texas Instruments 0.3-inch DMD (DLP3010) DLP chip displaying a definition of 1280 x 720 pixels associated with 500 lumens LED lighting. Unlike a UHP (Ultra High Pressure) lamp whose lifespan is a maximum of 10,000 hours, the diodes used by Anker make it possible to reach a lifespan of 20,000 hours with normal brightness and 30,000 hours in mode. battery. This video projector also has two 10 W speakers, the quality of which can still be improved.

Its Android system is a homemade version with a rather limited catalog of applications. You also have to make do with 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of storage memory. It also has wifi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac and Bluetooth 4.0.

The Anker Nebula Mars II Pro projector retails for around $600, but often goes on sale for less than $500. It competes directly with the XGIMI Mogo Pro, a more compact 1080p 300 lumens model with Android TV, and the BenQ GV30 (also 720p, but limited to 300 lumens) which has the distinction of being a little more upgradable thanks to its HDMI key placed in the case.

The Anker Nebula Mars II Pro, its power supply and its remote control.

Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

2D image quality

The Nebula Mars II Pro is equipped with fixed focal length optics to project a basic image between 80 cm and 2.40 m for a recoil between 1.15 m and 3.07 m. To carry out our measurements, we placed the video projector at 2.4 m in order to obtain an image of 2 m base.

This model has an automatic focusing and keystone adjustment system which is activated as soon as the projector is moved. This system is very efficient and works up to an angle of 135°. The 720p DLP chip displays great precision. The grid remains visible with an image of 2 m base, but the sharpness is good. We recommend instead to opt for a step back of 2 meters in order to have an image of 1.3 m base.

SDR colorimetry – hot temperature.

SDR colorimetry – hot temperature.

Colorimetry

Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

Delta E = 6.2

By setting the temperature to “Warm” to obtain a more faithful rendering, the average delta E is measured at 6.1, well above the value of 3, the threshold beyond which the eye can tell the difference between colors requested and colors shown. The rendering is far from perfect, but the drift remains correct for a LED projector, since all the models we tested display an average delta E greater than 3.

The gamma curve.

Gamma

Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

2.54

The gamma curve clearly lacks stability. If the dark gray levels are relatively well reproduced, the light grays are systematically underexposed, even blocked.

The temperature curve.

The temperature curve.

Temperature

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5

6,840K

If the average temperature measured at 6840 K is close to the reference value (6500 K), the curve is irregular, especially on the darkest grays – the least penalizing.

Contrast

Contrast

Editor's Rating: 2 out of 5

340:1

The contrast ratio of 340:1 (on our 1% white chart) is low and produces washed out blacks. This value drops to 240:1 on our target containing 35% white. Maximum brightness is good for a compact model. It reaches 41 cd/m². However, you still have to plunge the room into darkness to fully enjoy it. Of course, we are a long way from living room Home Cinema projectors since our reference, the Sony XW5000, peaks at more than 207 cd / m² in HDR with a native contrast of 1890:1.

The Nebula Mars II Pro uses three diodes (red, green and blue) to reproduce colors, and like all mono-DLP projectors, the rainbow effect is present. This phenomenon is more or less visible, if at all depending on the people and the images. It results in small rainbows around bright objects on a dark background.

We measured the display delay (input lag) at 102 ms, which corresponds to a delay of just over six frames compared to the 60 Hz source. heaviness in the response of commands. It’s frankly not pleasant to play on this video projector.

The Nebula Mars II Pro in action.

The Nebula Mars II Pro in action.

Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5

Functions and ergonomics

The Anker Nebula Mars II Pro.

The Anker Nebula Mars II Pro.

The design of the Nebula Mars II Pro is frankly successful. The plastic is of good quality, the finishes are good and the imitation leather handle gives this model a little original side in addition to being useful during transport.

The optics and the camera hidden behind the hatch.

The optics and the camera hidden behind the hatch.

The hatch protects the optics during transport. Opening it turns on the projector. Right next to the fixed optics, we find the camera used for autofocus and keystone correction.

The standard screw thread on the underside.

The standard screw thread on the underside.

On the underside of the Mars II Pro, there is a standard screw thread allowing the projector to be mounted on a very classic tripod.

The control buttons on the top.

The control buttons on the top.

On the top, there are the keys to control the projector almost completely: a directional cross with a validation button, a key to go back and the volume control. The Bluetooth button allows the projector to be used as an external speaker. The projector has two 10 W speakers whose quality is really not there. In comparison, the BenQ GV30 with its two 4 W speakers does much better. The sound delivered by the Nebula lacks clarity and low mids.

The connection.

The connection is simplified since you have to make do with an HDMI 1.4 input, a USB input and a 3.5 mm mini-jack headphone output. The device also has Bluetooth 4.2 and Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n.

The Android interface with Nebula sauce.

The Android interface with Nebula sauce.

The Nebula app store.

The Nebula app store.

The Mars II Pro comes with a custom version of Android 7.1. The interface is sober and quite fluid. We find access to the HDMI source, file managers with multimedia playback, application manager, network access and preferences. The second part displays the applications as well as the Nebula application store. There is no access to the official Google Play Store and you have to make do with the applications offered by Nebula.

Nebula at least has the merit of being transparent with the limitations of the Netflix app.

Nebula at least has the merit of being transparent with the limitations of the Netflix app.

You have to use the smartphone app to control the Netflix interface and search.

You have to use the smartphone app to control the Netflix interface and search.

Let’s say it right away, the list is quite thin. You have to make do with Amazon Prime, Disney+, YouTube and Netflix. For the latter, the operation is clearly not optimal since the application does not work entirely with the remote control. You have to use the Nebula mobile application to scroll through the list of content, for example. Finally, French streaming applications such as Molotov, OCS, TF1 or MyCanal are not available.

The remote control, basic.

The remote control, basic.

The all-black remote control works very well. It offers access to all the functions of the projector, but suffers from the absence of an integrated microphone, essential to simplify research, or backlit keys.

Strong points

  • Design.

  • Interesting brightness for a compact model.

  • Automatic focusing and keystone correction by camera.

  • Consumption.

Weak points

  • Limited contrast.

  • Relatively noisy.

  • Limited app catalog.

  • No backlight on the remote control.

Conclusion

Global mark

Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

How does grading work?

The Nebula Mars II Pro is a good portable HD projector that impresses above all with its brightness and ease of positioning – thanks to the automatic focus and keystone correction systems. The image quality remains very average, in particular because of a perfectible calibration and a limited contrast, characteristic common to all small video projectors. The most disappointing is probably the personalized Android system, whose possibilities are far from those offered by a model equipped with Android TV.

Sub Notes

  • 2D image quality

    Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

  • Functions and ergonomics

    Editor's Rating: 4 out of 5

  • Consumption and noise level

    Editor's Rating: 3 out of 5

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