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Great, but not completely portable


Classification:
8/10
?

  • 1 – Absolute Hot Trash
  • 2 – Sort warm garbage
  • 3 – Very flawed design
  • 4 – Some advantages, many disadvantages
  • 5 – Acceptably Imperfect
  • 6 – Good enough to buy on sale
  • 7 – Excellent, but not best in class
  • 8 – Fantastic, with some footnotes
  • 9 – Shut up and take my money
  • 10 – Absolute Design Nirvana

Price: $289.99

chazz-mair

The JIRENO CUBE 4 is a powerful projector that is well worth the price of admission. With its FHD 1080p resolution, Full 4K decoding, dual 5W speakers, and built-in Android TV, the JIRENO CUBE4 has everything you want in a portable projector. The only problem: it’s not that portable.

This is what we like

  • Impressive image quality
  • solid sound
  • Access to Android apps

And what we don’t do

  • remote operation only
  • no water resistance
  • Not battery powered

Design: elegant and resistant.

Jireno CUBE4 Projector
JIRENO
  • Dimensions: 7.5 x 5 x 7.2 inches
  • Weight: 4.8 pounds
  • Input: HDMI, USB, USB Type-C, 3.5mm audio jack, DC-in
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi 2.4 / 5Ghz, Bluetooth 5.0
  • Fan noise:
  • Light: HE DIRECTED

Wrapped in an aluminum case, the JIRENO CUBE4 feels robust. Like most projectors, the CUBE4 is a bit bulky. Weighing in at around five pounds, lifting it feels like holding a toaster. The only grips are a set of attachable leather bands used as a handle. The strap worked well and is more than capable of supporting the weight of the projector. I took it and hung it all over the house with no problems.

At the top of the case is your power button; it’s a little hard to notice at first, but you won’t lose sight of it later. The bracket is nicely hidden at the bottom of the CUBE4.

This projector fits the minimalist aesthetic quite well; all of its features are low-profile and flush with the case.

The projector lens sits above a fan on the front side, with a secondary fan located on the back of the projector. Fans are quiet enough: The audio from movies and TV shows drowned them out almost all the time. Still, there were a few times when the movie quieted down and I could hear both fans spinning across the room.

The JIRENO CUBE4’s input ports are located on the back of the projector and support DC, USB, HDMI, USB Type-C, and a 3.5mm audio jack. It also has Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity and dual-band Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz); all of these provide alternative ways of operating the device. It’s a good distro, but ultimately to be expected in today’s projector age.

Jireno Cube 4 Input Options
JIRENO

JIRENO advertises functionality with PCs, phones, tablets, Google Chromecast, and cameras; everything works as intended with no big drops in connection to be found.

Portability: misses the mark

This projector fits anywhere you can throw down a few books, but it requires a power outlet and isn’t waterproof. The Cube’s portability is heralded as one of its main draw factors, so worrying about rain is a bit of a pain.

The JIRENO CUBE4 is still very much a projector, which is not very well known for being portable. The CUBE4 is certainly smaller than most, but it weighs in at a remarkable 5 pounds and is around 7 inches long and tall. You could carry the CUBE4 in a backpack or duffle bag, but it’s too big to fit comfortably in most handbags or messenger bags. This isn’t much of a problem if you’re driving the projector where you need to go, but it’s heavy enough to lug your bag around on the go.

You definitely don’t want to carry this with you like you would a tablet or laptop. The lack of an internal battery eliminates many of the possibilities that would make this a great portable projector. If you want to use the JIRENO CUBE4 away from home, you need to go somewhere with a big enough wall, a power supply, and a way to get it there.

It’s certainly a step above most machines in the field, but these are enough clauses to make me doubt portability as one of this projector’s main selling points.

Image quality: FHD sharp

  • To show: LCD
  • Light: HE DIRECTED
  • Screen size: 30 to 200 inches
  • Sparkle: 500 ANSI lumens (200 LED lumens)
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080p (4K support)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9, 4:3
  • Focus: Automatic and Manual
  • Image Correction: 6D automatic

The JIRENO CUBE4 produces an impressive 500 ANSI lumens with its LCD lens, which converts to around 200 LED lumens. I tested it against white drywall at all times of the day and honestly the image quality is excellent. While I wouldn’t use this projector outdoors in broad daylight, the image looks sharp in most environments. Brightness tends to soften the image, but lens quality and autofocus do a decent job of making the most of a bad situation.

The Cube 4 reaches a screen resolution of 1920x1080p and can, according to Jireno, project a screen size of up to 200 inches. Those measures come with a caveat; after a certain point, the image quality begins to drop noticeably. It starts to blur around 100 inches, but remains perfectly visible for the entire advertised distance. It just bothered me every time I got close to the projection. It’s perfectly fine for outdoor viewing.

Sound: Solid, but from a single source

  • Audio: Dual 5 Watt Speakers

As mentioned above, the CUBE4 has dual 5-watt speakers with custom diaphragms designed to produce the kind of big echo you’d get in a movie theater. It certainly manages to simulate a larger room, but ultimately it’s still just a single source of audio. The actual sound quality isn’t bad at all, it only gets distorted in scenes with polluted soundscapes, and even then, it wasn’t much.

Fortunately, the Jireno Cube 4 supports external playback devices via Bluetooth and its 3.5mm audio jack. I don’t find it necessary to use it because the built-in speakers are perfectly fine; they simply “simulate” larger spaces instead of being placed in one.

User experience: pros and cons

  • Storage: 16 GB
  • Memory: 2GB
  • Operating system: JI-OS based on Android 9
  • Chipset: Amlogic T972

This is where the minimalist design of the Jireno Cube frustrated me. All projector functions, other than triggering, are handled through an external input device. Unfortunately the remote it comes with is battery powered and difficult to open. A distinct downward arrow on the rear of the remote implies a slide, but there are no slots or clips. I ended up using a knife to open the remote, which could have been a problem with the specific version they sent me, but it left a sour taste in my mouth.

I don’t know why the CUBE4 doesn’t have other buttons; there’s plenty of white space that you could use without cluttering up the layout. If you have a model without a remote control, you must use a USB device such as a mouse to control it.

Once set up, you’ll gain access to CUBE4’s built-in Android TV. As you’d expect, it has all the apps and games you’d find on a TV, like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Google Play Movies & TV.

It uses an older version of the Android TV operating system, but it works fine anyway and comes with the ability to install other Android apps. The Jireno Cube 4’s Am Logic T972 chip proved to be strong enough to handle everything I wanted to do, and its 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage were more than enough to keep everything running smoothly.

Should you buy the JIRENO CUBE4?

The JIRENO CUBE4 is undoubtedly a respectable choice for a projector. It does everything I want a projector to do and my frustrations were quickly fixed. Features like diffuse reflection and auto 6D correction open up many surfaces to be a viable display for a show. Not to mention, those dual 5-watt speakers pack a punch with enough bass to fill a room. That said, if you’re looking for the most portable projector on the market, this isn’t it.

At $299 at launch, I’d consider it worth the price, especially for social events or impromptu movie nights.

Classification: 8/10

Price: $289.99

This is what we like

  • Impressive image quality
  • solid sound
  • Access to Android apps

And what we don’t do

  • remote operation only
  • no water resistance
  • Not battery powered

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