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Do you want to mix up your summer activities and do something new and fun the whole family will love? Then you should consider getting a portable projector. Why? Backyard movie nights, obviously! You can hang a sheet from a clothesline or up on the side of your house, invite your friends over, and watch whatever you want with one of these amazing devices, and right now the best portable projector we’ve ever tested is on sale for its lowest price on Amazon.
The Anker Nebula Mars II portable projector is freaking amazing. I cannot stress this enough. It usually costs $500, which is honestly a little too expensive for most of us. Today, though, Anker is running a Deal of the Day on Amazon that knocks the price down to just $330. This is the absolute best price it’s ever been, and we’ve only seen it dip this low once before in December last year, so you really don’t want to miss your chance.
Why would you want a portable projector?
Not convinced yet? Let me tell you why it’s such a great buy. First, I’ve been using this projector in my home for nearly a year. It lives in a drawer in my bedroom, which means I don’t have a big TV taking up wall space. When I want to watch TV, I project onto a blank wall and get to enjoy a 10-foot picture. Yeah, that’s right. The massive viewing size makes me feel fancy as heck, and the 720p picture quality may not be 4K but looks totally fine. The lights were on when we snapped the photo below, which does wash the picture out a bit, of course (and don’t mind my insane obsession with Deadliest Catch).
I also bring it into my living room on occasion (see the other photo below) so I can watch TV or hook up my Nintendo Switch while my partner plays video games (what! we’re nerds), and last summer I brought it to the lake house my friends and I rented so we could watch TV while sitting by the fire and toasting marshmallows. It was the best kind of ‘glamping’ and I’m planning to bring it along this year too.
Technical details to know before you buy
The Mars II weighs about 4 pounds and is roughly the size of a six pack of soda cans. It’s got a convenient handle to carry from place to place, and comes with a remote as well as a smartphone app for even easier menu navigation (and keyboard use). It can stream wirelessly over WiFi, but also has an HDMI port, USB, and Bluetooth.
The battery can run for about four hours on a single charge, and after having used mine for almost a year I can say confidently the battery life has not deteriorated noticeably in that time. The screen size can change depending on how close or far the projector is from the surface it’s shining onto, making it great even if you have a small space like the wall in my living room:
When it comes to streaming, it’s got an Android 7.1 operating system that the tester, Micahel Desjardin, and I both find to be really easy to use. When you take it out of the box, it’ll already have the basics installed: Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, and Amazon Video. You can also add other streaming apps like Plex and Sling, and you can screencast from Android and Apple phones! Did I mention it has auto-focus? Anytime you move the projector the screen will recalibrate itself to display a sharp picture.
A more budget-friendly option is on sale too
If you really like the idea of having a TV that can go whenever you do, but the $330 price tag of the Mars II is making your eyes pop out of your head, maybe the smaller Capsule would be a better option. This project, also by Anker, is marked down to $224.99 ($125 off the full price) today as well—it’s slightly larger than a soda can and offers a decent quality picture as well as the same built-in streaming platform. Unlike the Mars II, it doesn’t have auto-focus and instead has a manual adjustment wheel that’s not as convenient but gets the job done. The picture is also not quite as sharp or bright, but it holds its own and its smaller size makes it super convenient to bring anywhere.
Get the Anker Nebula Mars II Portable Projector on Amazon for $329.99 (Save $170)
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Prices are accurate at the time this article was published, but may change over time.