Interactive Ultra short throw projector designed for classrooms.
I was invited by Sony Middle East today to check out the Sony VPL-SW525C Projector, an interactive short-throw projector that’s been designed for classroom use. Carlos Falcao, Marketing Manager – Displays & Projectors and Jaycee Milner, Engineer Channel Support, took us through a demo of the VPL-SW525C and some of its features.
The VPL-SW525C is a ‘short-throw’ projector, which means that instead of projecting from a far-off distance, the projector is installed directly above the wall or screen that it’s projecting on. It features two models equipped with either a 2,500 or 3,000 lumens lamp clocking in at around 6,000 hours of lamp life. The projector mounts easily and securely to the included wall bracket, which allows the projector’s position to be extended along the bracket’s arm.
What makes the VPL-SW525C unique is that it offers full interactivity for whatever surface it projects on. Milner demonstrated the simple ‘drawing board’ function of the projector which brings up a white canvas for the user to draw on directly using the bundled pens, which send feedback wirelessly to the projector and bundled software to pinpoint where the user is drawing at any given time. The pens are lightweight and each projector comes with two – one pen acts as a ‘master’ device and has the complete range of commands, while the second pen is a ‘slave’ and has a limited number of drawing options, making it suitable for a teacher/student demonstration scenario using the device. However both pens cannot be used at the same time as the projector is only capable of tracking one pen at a time. The pens can also be used as a mouse pointer, dismissing the need to go back to your laptop to advance to the next slide or navigate around your OS. Anything you draw on the canvas can then be saved as an image file instantly.
While the VPL-SW525C projector isn’t available in the market just yet, Falcao commented that Sony are already in talks to approach educational institutes to implement the VPL-SW525C in their classrooms. The projector has numerous advantages over similar technologies such as a smart boards, which are often much more expensive and not as intuitive to use. At around $2,000 the VPL-SW525C is affordable, easy to use, and works with most modern versions of Windows (Mac support will be available shortly after the projector hits the shelves). Milner also commented that the VPL-SW525C isn’t a projector that would appeal to most home consumers given its larger size and resolution of 1,280 x 800, which is why it’s a device that is purely geared towards brightly-lit classrooms that may not necessarily have the space for a regular projector setup.
Check out the brief demonstration of the VPL-SW525C’s features by Jaycee Milner below: