ASUS OLED family

My TV is dead. Well, not really. I was using a 43-inch 1080p TN panel TV for a long time. I was about to get another TV but this projector came. This Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV aims to be an all-in-one projector for work, entertainment, and even as a Bluetooth speaker.

With that said, this projector is definitely going to be premium in terms of price – at RM4,999. And I’ve been using this projector for about 6 months now. The reason why this review took so long is because of stock availability due to chip shortage.

ASUS Zenbook 14X OLED

So this Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 is – as the name suggests – a mini projector. It’s tiny and weighs in at only about 2kg which is surprisingly dense. There is one tiny foot at the front to adjust the angle of the projector but that’s about it.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

 

It uses laser projection with individual RGB liquid crystal projection system so that it can be really bright and has vivid colors. That laser diode is also rated for 20,000 hours.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

But while this projector is officially rated as a 1080p 60Hz projector, when we plug in an HDMI cable to our laptop, it says 4K 60Hz. And it also accepts 4K 60Hz signal. Hmmm… 🤔

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

I should also highlight that the Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 is not a short-throw projector. You still need about 3 meters from the screen to get 100 inches diagonally.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

Epson has a fantastic little applet to calculate everything for you – so I highly recommend you download it and play around with the settings to make sure it suits your living space. You can click here to download that applet and play around with it too. It’s free.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

For my case, I retrofitted the EF-12 projector into my existing home TV setup, that’s why it looks weird. I got a little dual-layer trolley here to put stuff on it and all the cables – including speaker – are connected across the room with all the cables hidden under the carpet. Looks like a homemade speedbump, but it works.

While we’re at that, let’s talk about the ports. We have:

  • 1x USB-A
  • 1x USB-B (for firmware updates only)
  • 2x HDMI (supports HDCP 2.3)
  • 3.5mm audio jack

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

I am quite disappointed that it doesn’t have an HDMI eARC port – although I don’t know how we’re supposed to connect it since soundbars are going to be positioned far away from the projector anyway.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

The USB port is also severely limited by Android TV as it just doesn’t support any external drives with exFAT format. So, if you want to play your own videos on this projector but the file size is larger than 4GB, then you gotta find some other alternatives.

User experience

Okay, so how’s it like to use the Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV? It’s actually surprisingly good.

When I unboxed it, the projector shot out a grid to the wall and it calibrated itself since it also has a camera inside. I didn’t have to do anything as it can already auto-level itself and autofocus to provide the sharpest image possible. It’s not perfect though, as I had to go and do some fine-tuning to the cornerstone, and then it’s good.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV
This autocalibration feature is just so good.

Since it’s also using Android TV operating system, I logged in to my Google account and everything ran properly.

The projection is fantastic and I was watching a lot of shows on this projector – mainly animated shows with vivid colors – and it looks absolutely mesmerizing. Did you watch those videos where some dude just walk around town with a camera on their head? Those videos look so realistic, as though I am walking in that town.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

However, gaming on this projector should be out of the question. The amount of delay that this projector has is just insanely high to the point that I just put down the controller within 2 minutes.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

There are zero options like “game mode” on this projector. There are multiple different color profiles, but I don’t think that is necessary.

Those built-in speakers in this projector are fantastic. Did I mention that the projector’s speakers are Yamaha speakers? We do have a sample of the speaker quality – but you’ll have to watch our video at the top of this review.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

The projector can also be used as a Bluetooth speaker or just a speaker in general as there is a button to turn the laser diode off while music is still playing.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

However, there are a lot of growing pains with the Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV. We live in an era that Netflix is essentially a household name and yet this projector is not Netflix certified. That is why it is not in the Google Play Store for this projector.

That is why I had to install something like Xplore File Manager, APK Mirror, and Sideload Launcher to get Netflix up and running on this projector. Does it work? Sure does, and Netflix looks great on this projector too. It’s just a shame that Netflix is not available to download in the Play Store officially. That means each time I want to update the Netflix app on this projector, I have to go through a lot of trouble.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

 

Netflix does work but we’ll need a wireless USB mouse to get it working properly as the Netflix app doesn’t respond to the remote control’s buttons.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

Then, this is a nitpicky reason of mine actually – the firmware update procedure. There are a total of 3 firmware to update on this projector – we have the Android TV OS itself, then the projector itself, and lastly – this one which I have no idea what it is.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV
What’s this for?

I just update everything and so far, it works fine.

One more thing to highlight about the Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV is the noise level. It’s surprisingly quiet, honestly. I mean, if I sit beside it with no audio playing, then I can definitely hear the fan. However, if I’m watching a movie or listening to music, then I am definitely not noticing the fan noise at all.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

There is also an air filter. that slides in the projector. I have not changed it so far. Epson does have air filters but I don’t think they’re available for sale in Malaysia?

Should you buy the Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV?

For the price of RM4,999. Yes, it’s a hefty price to pay but I can see why people like this kind of thing. It’s tiny, it projects a large, bright image, has a fantastic built-in speaker.

Epson EpiqVision Mini EF-12 Laser Projection TV

I’ll still say though, this projector’s image is fantastic. I was still planning to get another TV but I left that idea out the door entirely since this projector literally wowed me with what it is capable of.

With that said, it’s not perfect as there are some growing pains like not having exFAT support, the lack of official Netflix support, and its inability to be used for any sort of gaming.

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