Using a Texas Instruments Digital Light Processing (DLP) chip, the 2.9-pound LX-8 projects an 800-lumen image at a native XGA resolution (1024 x 768). The LX-8 is a no-nonsense little box, roughly the size of a hardback novel. On the rear are inputs for audio, mouse, RGB video, S-video, and composite video. Atop the LX-8 are a focusing wheel, power button, and buttons for manual or automatic selection of an input source.
Lightware's remote control is straightforward. Flipping up a small cover reveals nine buttons that control the projector's digital zoom, keystone, auto input select, audio functions; this button keypad also works well as a remote mouse.
A well-organized system of on-screen menus provides access to the various setup functions. These menus change in complexity, depending upon whether the remote's flip-up cover is open or closed - a nice touch.
The LX-8's tiny, 1-watt speaker would do in a pinch. The unit lacks an optical zoom, relying instead on a digital zoom. This, unfortunately, is adjustable only via the remote.
In our tests with various resolutions, the LX-8 handily scaled down signals of up to 1280 x 1024 to its native 1024 x 768 resolution. The projected image flickered some at higher resolutions, but we were able to compensate using the projector's controls. Its greatest drawback is that it delivers only an 800-lumen image. There are projectors in this size range that produce up to 1,100 lumens. On the other hand, those units also sell for upwards of $4,100. All things considered, the LX-8 offers a very good value.
Lightware Legend LX-8Rating: 93
Manufacturer: Lightware800-211-9001; www.lightware.com
Configuration: Compatible with all PCs and Macs
Pros: High native resolution (XGA); DLP (Digital Light Processor) optical engine; a bargain
Cons: At 800 lumens, not the brightest image; lacks an optical zoom