Xgimi H2- an awesome review

Xgimi is an unknown brand in the USA while it is well known in China. Simply put, They make projectors. DLP projectors to be specific. They launched an LED-DLP projector, XGIMI H1 in the market and that was a huge hit. Ever since then, they have launched quite a few projectors and are doing well. Today, we are going to see the successor of Xgimi H1, the H2, and its review. I will also explain different projector technologies along the way. Let’s dive into an awesome review of Xgimi H2

Xgimi H2 review
Xgimi H2

Xgimi

Xgimi, the creator of Xgimi H2, first started as an IndieGoGo project later bagged 3 CES awards in 2018. The brand is quite a nice one coming from China. They are selling it on amazon direct in the US and many other countries. Started as a small company, now, it is one of the sought-after projector makers in the world. XGIMI H2 speaks of the quality of the brand very well.

Appearance

Picture of the front view of Xgimi H2

Xgimi H2 steals your heart the first time you see it. It looks very beautiful. The build is very good too. The lens of Xgimi H2 has a lens cover.it is automatic and cannot open manually.

Top of Xgimi H2. All buttons are shown
Top of Xgimi H2

On top of Xgimi h2, there are play pause and control buttons. There is also a touch bar given to adjust the volume from the inbuilt speakers. More on the speakers later.

The front of Xgimi H2 consists of an infrared receiver and the Lens.
Front of Xgimi H2

On the front, there is an infrared receiver and emitter. Also, there exists the branding of Harman Kardon speakers. Unmistakably, there is a big lens area.

On the bottom, there is a subwoofer with Harman Kardon branding. There is a tripod screw at the center. You can mount the projector on a tripod on the dedicated stand from Xgimi.

plain view of the Side of Xgimi H2
Side of Xgimi H2

The sides of Xgimi H2 are plain and beautiful with a concealed speaker grille. You can even mount it upside down. There are height adjustable 4 legs on the corners. 

The rear of the Xgimi H2 with all ports and the heat sink
The Rear of the H2 with all ports and the heat sink

On the back of Xgimi H2, there is a big heat sink and connectors arranged in a sleek way. There is a power inlet, two HDMI ports, two USB ports, ethernet, optical out, and a headphone jack on the rear. One of the USB ports is a service port for the software update. The other one is a USB 3.0 port. You can connect a pen drive or hard drives into any of the ports of Xgimi h2 to watch stuff on the projector. A lot of time and effort has gone in for good aesthetics. 

The remote controller has all buttons nicely placed
Remote controller with all buttons

The remote shipped along with it a really good one. It takes in two AAA batteries to function. Once paired it with the projector, the remote work flawlessly. It has a power button, an air mouse button, a setting button. Below the setting button there lies the navigation button and an ok button at the center.

There is a volume rocker on the remote. On the bottom surface of the remote, there is a toggle switch. You can toggle between what the volume rocker can do. Either it’s focusing or volume adjustments. Once flicked to focusing, the projector autofocuses on its own. Once the autofocus is completed, you can do normal manual focusing. The air mouse is a boon. Press the button and the projector shows a pointer. You can control the projector and use the air mouse function from a to z of the projector.

Features and settings

Boot up the system, you will be greeted with the Xgimi version of android. The projector has an autofocus function. It powers up and goes into autofocus mode. You can manually focus by sliding the switch under the remote.

The Home screen of Xgimi H2
The Home screen of Xgimi H2

The home screen is fairly simple. You get the below apps

  • Youtube
  • Browser
  • Aptoide
  • File manager
  • Sources
  • Xgimi assistant
  • Screen mirroring
  • Settings
  • Software-update
  • Office app. 
  • Tv optimizer 
  • Settings

Youtube

Youtube is as usual. Nothing extraordinary. You need to sign in and it pulls in your account from the internet.

Browser

Google Chrome browser
Chrome browser

You get google chrome here. The browser is quite okay to use. You can navigate using the Air mouse. You can even download stuffs form the browser itself.

Aptoide

Apitode Home screen
Apitode Home screen

Aptoide has quite a several useful apps. Since it is a custom version of the android for tv, you don’t get the google play store. Aptoide is the way to go. 

File manager

File manager in XGimi H2
File manager in XGimi H2

You can browse through the files on the entire device. This is very much handy if a USB device such as a pen drive is connected. You can browse through the pen drive and can play the needed file.

Sources

This shows both the HDMI sources and the file systems connected to the USB of the projector

Xgimi assistant

With this app, you can connect to the mobile app. You can use the mobile app as the remote for the projector.

Screen mirroring

Screen mirroring app
Screen mirroring

Settings

Setup the screen mirroring and you can mirror the android or iOS phones. The quality is good and instantaneous. It also supports Miracast which is a boon.

Software-update

This app searches online if any new updates are available. The latest one is v 1.3.15

Office app

WPS office software
WPS Office software

Be it a word file or a spreadsheet, you can open them with this app. Office app is built-in and it adds more value to the projector.

Tv optimizer 

TV optmizer home page
TV optmizer home page

It optimizes the projector for speed. This helps especially if you’re playing games.

Settings

Inside the settings, you will get a ton of options.

Setting page
Setting page

Network settings

Under network settings, you get a wifi toggle, wifi hotspot, and a LAN feature. You will even get Bluetooth in this projector. You can use the projector as a Bluetooth speaker. You can connect the projector to other Bluetooth speakers and send out the audio to the Bluetooth speaker. Its multipurpose in both ways.

Image settings

Inside image settings, you will get brightness settings. Here, you can customize the tone of the white color by dialing up or down the RGB colors. 

And then, there is a keystone function. You can place the projector up to 45degrees tilted vertically or horizontally. The projector is made to adjust to this. It has an auto keystone correction. However for the best image quality, always place the projector perpendicular to the screen and avoid keystone correction.

Projector placement helps to set if the projectors stand-mounted or ceiling mounted. This way, you will get the correct image every time. 

There is a zoom function too. Even though you can use zoom to fit the projector onto the screen, it is best avoided because the zoom is digital. You better move the projector manually to fit the screen. 

The next one is the video settings. You get to adjust the brightness, contrast, sharpness, saturation, white balance, motion compensation, noise reduction, etc. in these settings. You don’t have to change anything and the image looks cool. In my case, I have dialed down the sharpness from 50 to 33 and I am all set. I leave the motion companion at low and noise reduction off. The result is nice contrasty picture quality.

Sound settings

Setting page
Setting page

You will get an option, ‘sound output’, in the sound settings. Here you can choose what to playback the sound. The built-in speakers or external speakers. In external speakers settings, you can choose whether they send sound via ARC or through optical output. Again, you can choose whether the sound output is the source of decoded PCM. I don’t use these settings. I have the fire stick connected to the AVR and the AVR in turn is connected to the projector. Hence, the sound goes to the AVR and only video signals are coming to the Xgimi H2.

You also get the option to turn off the key tone sounds and startup music. I have turned them off.

System settings

Settings page
Settings page

Under system settings, you get a whole bunch of menu options. 

Default boot: here you can choose what to boot by default. I have turned it on and have chosen HDMI1. This means, when the projector starts up, it goes directly into HDMI 1 so that I can watch what’s on the fire stick with zero buttons touched. It is one of the most convenient features.

System information menu will give you the details about the projector like android version, available space, etc. A factory reset wipes clean the whole software of the system. You will lose all the data and settings saved in the system. Beware of using it. Also, the fan cranked high is normal while resetting. Focus settings give access to settings related to autofocus, focussing while booting up, etc. I have disabled focusing on boot and have enabled Dynamic focus compensation. This allows the Xgimi H2 to focus razor-sharp. 

The last one is the enhanced contrast option. Xgimi has a small shutter and when enhanced contrast is turned on, the shutter closes to cut the brightness and increases contrast. For the same reason, I have disabled it. I couldn’t compromise on brightness as I am using a clothed screen and it naturally improved the contrast.

The last one in the settings section is general settings.

The device name gives the name of the device. The input method shows the default input method that is the remote. You can add a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse to it and it shows up here. On the language tab, you can choose the language your Xgimi H2 wants to display. I have chosen English. You can set your timezone from the timezone editor. This, however, doesn’t change the language automatically. At last, we have more settings. Here you can calibrate the gyroscope of the remote. 

Xgimi H2 support both HDMI 2.0 and HDMI 1.4. I saw better picture quality with HDMI 2.0. Also, HDR works only with HDMI 2.0. After the latest update and small calibration, the system works flawlessly.

Visual performance

Visual performance
Visual performance

The visual performance is why one should buy this projector in the first place. Secondly its light source. The light source is a high power LED and that pays off well. Because the lamp lasts up to 20,000 hours as per claim. That’s a long life compared to 3000 of a bulb projector. That itself is a great thing for any projector lovers because the lamps cost a lot. The skin tone is intact and so are the gamma settings.

A scene from mad max fury roads
A shot from Mad max Fury roads

How DLP works

In traditional projectors, Lamp is used and they have a life of about 3000 hours as said above. This light is filtered and sent to a color wheel. The color wheel produces red green and blue colors. This light is then sent to a chip called DLP. It stands for Digital Light Processing chip. They have small mirrors in the chip. For a 1080p DLP projectors like Xgimi H2, there will be 2 million mirrors.

Let’s take a single mirror for example. When light is sent to the mirror it can either show the light or cut the light. It depends upon what the mirrors are doing in the DLP of Xgimi H2. So, if the mirror is on, it shows light and if the mirror is off, it doesn’t show the light. Now we have three colors coming to the DLP. Each color can individually be turned on and off and this happens hundreds of times a second. This way, the mirrors can recreate any colors we want. And scale it to 1080p, we get a beautiful picture.

A scene from mad max fury roads
A scene from mad max fury roads

Now, The color wheel is responsible for different colors. Even though it is a transparent glass, many lights would be wasted. But not in LED projectors. There are no color wheels. Instead, there will be RGB LED sources. It blinks several hundred times a second and it is much better than the color wheel, visually. For example, Traditional lamp-based projectors can do rec 709 color space. But Xgimi H2 can do a much higher 85% of DCI p3. Since there is no color wheel, the system is less noisy.

This DCI p3 color space makes HDR possible for Xgimi H2. Sure, the brightness of a projector never achieves a TV-like brightness level, and can the HDR be bogus? Not really. HDR has two things built in. One of them is brightness and the other one is the wide color gamut. Since our projector can do DCI p3, which is a wide color gamut color space, it can do HDR except for the brightness but the color. Speaking of brightness, Xgimi H2 has 1350 lumens of Brightness. You might say that it is far less than a lamp-based projector. Science and the absence of a color wheel say otherwise.

Remember the color wheel from the previous paragraph? It consumes light and only a certain percentage of light comes out. However, in a LED-based projector like XGIMI H2, there isn’t a color wheel and therefore, the brightness of the lamps is used to the fullest. Secondly, it is an LED light source and theoretically, it is perceivable brighter than the bulb source. Perceived contrast is also very very good compared to lamp-based projectors.

picture of a parrot shown on XGIMI H2
A picture from youtube

Overall, the picture quality of this projector is very very good. The blacks are near black, whites are white. The colors are punchy and beautiful. The motion is smooth and the perceived contrast is fantastic.

3D performance

3d menu
3d menu

Xgimi h2 is capable of 3d and the 3d of this projector is breathtakingly beautiful. The depth is so much that in some titles I have to focus my eyes to view them. The motion is great too and Brightness is good. The 3D somehow improves the contrast and it works great. My windows machine recognized my Projector as a 3d capable display. Long press on settings and you can see the different 3d formats it supports. 

They include

  • Side by side 3d
  • Top and bottom 3d
  • Blu-ray 3d
  • Convert to 2d 
  • Convert to 3d and
  • Turn off 3D

Yes, the projector converts a 2d movie into 3d and the results are great. The technology used is the DLP link 3d system with an active shutter glass. The glasses have to be bought separately. XGIMI sells its own glasses but any DLP link glass would work just fine. Turn on the glass, turn on 3D from settings, click a button on the glass if needed synchronization and you’re good to go. The only gripe is that you cannot change the depth of 3d. This function would have made a huge difference to the projector. But, nothing wrong with the current setup. I am very happy with the 3d performance.

Aspect ratio:

You will get a three aspect ratio with this projector.

They are

  • 4:3
  • 16:9 (native)
  • 16:10

16:9 is the native Aspect ratio as the DLP DMD chip used here is of the same 16:9 aspect ratio. Others are emulated by turning off the pixels etc. It is best to use with a 16:9 aspect ratio.

Sound of Xgimi h2

The sound quality is not at all bad. It is good. Xgimi h2 can easily fill a small room with sound. The inbuilt Harman Kardon speakers are nice. The sound is tuned towards the bass side of the spectrum. Although the projector cannot reach low bass, the bass from it is very good and punchy. Volume can be controlled from the remote or touch bar on top of the projector. XGIMI h2 is a step above normal lamp-based projectors when it comes to sound quality.

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Conclusion

Xgimi H2 is a very capable device. The best thing is that it is available on amazon with a warranty. No other projector in this price range offers the flexibility of a TV on a projector. You can use it as a TV all day long and the projector doesn’t even get hot. This is an awesome buy for whatever it is offered for. The sheer picture quality and the sound quality it has is worth the price. It is simply one of the best projectors to own. Thanks for reading.

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