It might be time to add a portable projector to your small business sales arsenal. If you're like me, you're probably on the road these dark days cajoling terrified potential customers. I've found that nothing helps sell products better than throwing a big, fat, clear image of the item on a wall. There has been a quieter, but more important paradigm shift in projection systems. Imaging shops like Seiko Epson, Hitachi ( HIT), Sony ( SNE), Canon ( CAJ), Mitsubishi, Optoma, Sanyo ( SANYY) and Panasonic ( PC) have adapted sophisticated processing technology for projectors. The result is a fabulous increase in performance and value. These days, a high-end, entry-level projector can cost just $1,000. These units can weigh less than three pounds, fit in your luggage and can be set up in 10 minutes. Hard times have dampened the projector party. Earlier this year, Image Holdings bought the storied projector maker InFocus for $39 million. Businesses can expect to find aggressive pricing on most projection systems.
The InFocus N1102 projector offers high quality and portability.
To get a better feel on where the portable projector market is right now, I have been testing InFocus's N1102 series (price: $1149). What you get: a remarkably high-quality projector that you can take anywhere. InFocus uses Digital Light Processors (DLP), chips made by Texas Instruments ( TXN). I have always been a big fan of DLP projectors. They pump out a rich, colorful image and require little maintenance, except when blubs need to be changed after tens of thousands of hours of use.