er is a liberating spirit among projectors: instead of an angular housing, it’s in a hand cylinder that looks like a small spotlight, propped up on a round base, that can be rotated 180 degrees – up, down, forward and backward. As a result, the mini projector lights up the ceiling, making it ideal as a media buddy. The manufacturer Samsung believes that its name Freestyle is well chosen.
An accurate video cannon costs about 1,000 euros. What do you get for that other than the original design? The datasheets are Full HD and a maximum brightness of 550 lumens, which is enough brightness for a small cinema in between, but indicates a dark environment. Depending on the projection distance, Freestyle creates murals with a diameter of 250 cm, created using long-lasting LED cells and a DLP chip as a mirror element. The projector draws power from a power source connected via a USB-C cable. Unfortunately, this puts the motion artist short, but there’s a cure on the horizon: Samsung will soon offer a decent battery that can be screwed under the stand. The projector emits sound either from an all-in-one built-in speaker or from a Bluetooth box via the corridor radio.
Useful user interface, useful application
The projector unlocks all conceivable streaming sources via WLAN, and can also take advantage of ARD and ZDF media libraries, and audio streaming services can also run the program. The projector sorts all the shows on a user interface that is well known to owners of TVs of the same brand. Freestyle also uses the Samsung Tizen operating system. External audio and video sources can connect to the projector via radio or cable. Apple devices, for example, send their videos via Airplay 2, and Blu-Ray players are connected via an HDMI cable to a mini connector.
Switching from a streaming program to an HDMI input is not so easy. Unfortunately, Samsung did not provide a menu item for this in the user interface, and the projector’s small remote control does not provide a button either. This can be addressed by controlling the device via the Samsung Smart Things app. However, in our test runs, the HDMI switch worked more easily. The monitor automatically recognizes when the video cable is connected and switches accordingly. The Freestyle method is also suitable for decorative wall painting: colorful leaflets or beautiful landscapes are saved as pictures, and written materials for appropriate occasions are included – Merry Christmas, for example, or cheers.
Auto focus shows weak points
The projector has two automatic functions that can be turned off to adjust the image. One, called aberration correction, adjusts all edges, and the other adjusts focus. We managed to make friends with aberration correction. It works well and reliably. We weren’t too happy with the autofocus, manual adjustment clearly sharpens the image from the device. It’s also a pity that you have to work your way through the menus for this job.
Well-adjusted, the projector provides clear and beautiful high-resolution images, if necessary, even against a color background: using the Smart Things app on your Android phone, you can automatically correct the color tone. Projector brightness is insufficient for daytime environments, but you should not expect this from a projector of this class. We were even pleasantly surprised by the sound of the picture. The Freestyle has a fairly powerful sound and sounds better than many kitchen radios.
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