Fancy a cinema-spec IMAX Enhanced projector in your front room, or a secret ceiling projector that pretends to be a magic lamp? XGIMI has you covered. At CES 2024, the firm is showing off its Horizon Max, an IMAX projector boasting some smart software and the use of dual light sources to deliver a wider color gamut, strong brightness, and improved contrast. The same technologies will be coming to some of the firm's more modest projectors too.
The Horizon Max is being unveiled early, as it isn't expected to go on sale until late 2024. But XGIMI is clearly very pleased with the device, which it says is the world's very first long-throw smart projector with IMAX Enhanced certification – something that was previously only available in very premium-priced projectors. The goal here is to make the best 4K projector for people who want theater-like visuals true to the aspect ratio of the original movie (available through Disney Plus and some 4K Blu-rays) – although as yet we don't know what its actual price tag will be.
Let there be (dual) light
The Max includes two key technologies, which XGIMI calls ISA (Intelligent Screen Architecture) 5.0 and Dual Light 2.0. The former uses a mix of hardware and software including a fully automated motorized gimbal to automatically identify the best projection positioning, and in a smart touch it can remember the settings for different walls – so you could game on one wall and then turn the projector to face a bigger wall for movie night, with the system automatically reconfiguring it for you.
The second technology, Dual Light 2.0, combines a triple laser and a phosphor light. The latter is designed to deal with any imperfections produced by the former, and the result is both bright – 3,100 ISO Lumens – and high in contrast, with a native contrast ratio of 2,000:1. XGIMI says it's the firm's brightest projector to date, with brightness 35% higher than its previous flagship, the Horizon Ultra.
Aladdin's latest lamp is seriously smart
XGIMI is also going to unveil Aladdin, which it calls "a unique triple-threat": it's a ceiling projector, a smart light, and a speaker in a single device. It's capable of projecting an HD image of up to 100 inches with a 0.7:1 projection ratio, and the built-in Harman Kardon speaker delivers 360-degree sound. Aladdin also provides dynamic wallpapers, huge interactive children's books and ambient bedtime sounds; its many talents earned it an honorary mention among the CES 2024 Innovation Awards.
Unfortunately Aladdin isn't going to be a US or European release in the first half of this year; it'll launch in Japan in June but a wider release hasn't yet been announced. It's a very clever idea for rooms of limited space who want big images, though – it can replace your light and do a useful job most of the time, and then suddenly you can watch movies out of nowhere, without any surfaces in your room being taken up by equipment.
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Writer, broadcaster, musician and kitchen gadget obsessive Carrie Marshall (Twitter) has been writing about tech since 1998, contributing sage advice and odd opinions to all kinds of magazines and websites as well as writing more than a dozen books. Her memoir, Carrie Kills A Man, is on sale now. She is the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR.