Vivitek Qumi Q38 Full HD pocket-sized projector review

Vivitek Qumi Q38 portable projector


Build quality






Picture Quality





  • Handy size
  • Looks quality
  • Wireless operation
  • Simple set up
  • Decent image quality


  • Paying for portability
  • Buggy remote

q38 redVivitek’s Qumi range of portable projectors are ideal for those on the move. So, whether you’re going from site-to-site to present facts and figures or enjoy some guerrilla film nights, you can be assured there’s a projector for you. Recently Vivitek added the Qumi Q38 to their go-anywhere range so we asked to have a look.

GadgetyNews is quite familiar with the Qumi range having reviewed a number of Vivitek’s portables. The Qumi Q38 boasts 1080p native resolution and the ability to project a 130-inch image.

It manages all of this from a compact device packing a rechargeable battery for total wireless operation.

So, let’s see how the Q38 performs, shall we?

Qumi Q38 design

qumi q38 with remoteVivitek lists the Q38 amongst its pocket-sized portable projectors. Well, technically, it is – as long as you are wearing a jacket with decent-sized pockets. However, it is most definitely portable. Measuring a more than reasonable 188 x 118 x 34 mm (W x D x H) you can easily slip it in to a small bag or large pocket. It is light, but no featherweight at 0.746 kg. Again, it is still well within the portable realm.

Most of that weight will be due to the Q38’s battery. Yup, you are able to use the Q38 totally wireless. The internal 12,000 mAh battery last up to 2 hours. You also get built-in Wi-Fi as well as Bluetooth.

Naturally, it comes with mains power via a rather hefty power brick. This really adds to the weight but is a necessary addition.

qumi q38 projector angleThe projector is a nice-looking rounded rectangle. The one sent to us for review is finished in a rather nice, glossy red. When it catches the light just right you can see that there is a subtle stippled design in the finish too.

qumi q38Up front you’ll find the lens hiding behind a little sliding door for protection. The rest of this face is covered in a mesh grille.

qumi q38 portsThe sides and the rear are fitted with cooling vents. Additionally, whilst around the back, this is where the ports live. You get a HDMI port, a pair of USB A ports, audio out mini jack and a microSD card slot. Also here is the power jack for mains juice.

qumi q38 projectorUp top are some touch controls that mirror what the little bundled remote can do. So, you have menu navigation keys including select/return, a back button, menu button and a plus and minus for the electronic focus. Also up here are a pair of indicator lights for power and battery.

Finally, underneath, is a little kickstand to aim the projector upwards.

It is a neat and funky-looking projector, I have to admit.

Qumi Q38 performance

qumi remoteThe Q38 has a native resolution of 1080p (1920 x 1080) through its LED lamp free light source. This should be good for up to 30,000 hours. This dishes out 600 ANSI Lumens of brightness. It will support up to WUXGA (1920 x 1200) @60Hz though.

It projects in 16:9 as its native aspect ratio and can throw an image of between 19-inches to 130-inches. The Q38 does have keystone correction (Auto Vertical: +/-40°)

As well as the audio out jack port the projector is fitted with a pair of 2W speakers. As in most cases, the audio from the speakers is OK in a quiet environment if that’s your only option. If you’re looking to watch a movie, hook up some external speakers or use headphones.

Set up

qumi q38 menu 2Setting the projector up straight out of the box was fairly straight forward. I had to use the power brick as I had not left it to charge.

Powering the Q38 up I was faced with a fuzzy image. A couple of prods at the electronic focus and job done. Connecting it to my home Wi-Fi network was a tad laborious but, if you own a Bluetooth keyboard, this will make things easier. Also, I had to enter my network credentials a couple of time before all was golden.

A quick software update and we were away.

In use

qumi q38 vikingsThe Qumi Q38 isn’t the brightest projector on the market but the picture is watchable even with ambient light. The colours are decent and 10,000:1 contrast is reasonable.

Using a Roku Express in to the Q38’s HDMI port I tested out Star Wars: The Last Jedi and a bit of Vikings. For these I used the ‘Normal’ picture setting.

In a darkened room the picture quality is more than adequate. However, fast paced action games such as FPS and driving sims did suffer from blurring. That said, more ‘party’ games and the likes of Mortal Kombat are handled well enough as well as being great fun when supersized over 100-inches.

qumi q38 menuThe user interface is friendlier than the one we faced in our review of the Q6. One minor niggle is that the little remote control needs to be pointed accurately at the device in order for it to work. Even then there was occasional lag which added to the frustration of setting it up.

The Q38 runs both cool and quiet. Even after a few hours it didn’t feel like it had been working hard, and that’s during the recent warm-spell we’ve been enjoying.

Qumi Q38 review conclusion

[amazon_link asins=’B07BMDW252′ template=’ProductAd’ store=’gadgnews-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=”]We are generally impressed by Vivtek’s Qumi range of portable projectors and, with the Q38, they have done it again. The Q38 looks and feels like a premium device and it performs well.
Whilst not perfect, the Q38 does extremely well for its size and price point. The assumption here is that you have a good reason to be buying a portable projector instead of a compact one. This is something I would advise you consider well before making a decision to buy.
If portable is the way forward for you, then the Qumi Q38 does a lot of things well. I love the fact that through its in-built rechargeable battery and wireless device connection you could literally watch a film in the middle of a field, so that be what you want to do.

Price and availability

You can buy the Vivitek Qumi Q38 portable projector now from Amazon for £564. It is available in red, white and black.

Qumi Q38 specs at a glance

Native Resolution1080p (1920 x 1080)
Brightness600 ANSI Lumens
Contrast Ratio10,000:1
Max. Supported ResolutionWUXGA (1920 x 1200) @60Hz
Native Aspect Ratio16:9
Lamp Life and TypeLamp free design. LED light source last up to 30,000 hours
Display TypeSingle chip DLP® TRP Technology by Texas Instruments
Chip Size0.33″ DMD
Throw Ratio1.2:1
Image Size (Diagonal)19″ – 130″
Projection Distance0.5 – 3.5 m
Zoom Ratio1x
Offset (Based on Full Image Height)100%
FeaturesEmbedded 12,000 mAh battery last up to 2 hours; Built-in Wireless for device connection and mirroring; Bluetooth capacity for easy device pairing
Keystone CorrectionAuto Vertical: +/-40°
Speakers2W x2
I/O Connection PortsHDMI, Audio-Out (Mini-Jack), USB A (x2), SD (microSD card slot)
PC Free ViewerImages: JPEG/BMP/GIF/PNG; Audio: MP3,WMA,AAC,WAV/OGG/AC3/DDP/FLAC/APE; Video: AVI/RM/RMVB/TS/VOB/MLV/MOV/ISO/WMV/ASF/FLV/DAT/MPG/MPEG;, Document: Microsoft® Office 2010 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint w/o animation); PDF
Dimensions (W x D x H)188 x 118 x 34 mm
Weight0.746 kg
Noise Level32dB (Normal Mode)
PowerSupply: AC 100-240V, 50/60Hz Consumption: 66W (Normal Mode), <0.5W (Standby)