Anker has recently released its Nebula Cosmos smart projector. It is a smaller, Full HD sibling of the Cosmos Max 4K projector. The device is primarily aimed at consumers who want an affordable smart projector for home entertainment.
Anker Nebula Cosmos Review – Features and Hardware Specifications
Anker’s Nebula Cosmos smart projector packs a decent set of features and hardware. It is an oval-shaped device with a neutral finish. The lens is at the front while the power button and I/O panel are located at the rear. The smart projector has a quad-core CPU (A55) and GPU (Mali G31) along with 2GB of RAM and 8GB of eMMC ROM. Its integrated storage is adequate for installing apps but not for downloading games or content. The device features dual-band Wi-Fi for wireless connectivity. There is a built-in 20W (2x10W) speaker system that makes external speakers optional.
The Anker Nebula Cosmos smart projector employs a 0.33DMD chip from Texas Instruments. It makes use of DLP technology for image projection. The device has a native resolution of 1080p or Full HD, allowing users to watch movies and videos in high-quality. As most of the content available today is in Full HD resolution, the Anker Nebula Cosmos smart projector is a suitable entertainment option. It uses an LED as a light source with a brightness rating of 900 ANSI lumens. The LED has a rated lifespan of 30,000 hours. Anker Nebula Cosmos has a standard throw ratio and produces a 100-inch image at a distance of 2.66-meters from the screen (60-in @1.6m).
The Cosmos smart projector has decent connectivity options with two HDMI 2.0 ports for connecting devices like laptops and two USB Type-A ports for playing files from USB storage media like flash drives. Anker Nebula Cosmos supports popular audio and video formats, including MP3, AAC, WMA, RM, Mkv, WMV, MOV, MP4, DAT, AVI, and ISO. It can decode HDR10 and Dolby content. The projector’s power supply is located in an external adapter, making it a little inconvenient to carry.
Anker Nebula Cosmos Review – Software
On the software side of things, Anker Nebula Cosmos does not lack either. It is one of the few smart projectors to feature the latest Android TV 9.0 operating system. Users can download applications from the Google Play store on their Anker Nebula Cosmos smart projector. It even supports Google’s Chromecast devices, allowing you to stream content from your smartphone, computer, laptop, or tablet. If you have an app like Disney+, Netflix, or Hulu on your existing device, you don’t have to install it on Anker Nebula Cosmos necessarily and can use Chromecast instead.
Anker Nebula Cosmos even works with Google Assistant. It is a great software feature for owners who use Google Assistant. An IR/Bluetooth remote included in the package allows users to control the smart projector. They can also access Google Assistant through the remote of the smart projector. It has a built-in mic for the same. You can navigate the interface of the projector, access Play Store, and perform other Google tasks. Alternatively, users can download the Nebula Connect app on their smartphone to control the Cosmos smart projector.
Anker Nebula Cosmos Review – Performance
Performance-wise, Anker Nebula Cosmos has many positives but a couple of quirks as well. Its 900 ANSI lumens brightness rating is good for a smart projector but less than standard home theater projectors. Anker Nebula Cosmos is more suitable for environments or rooms with no or low ambient light. Make sure to install it in areas where ambient light can be controlled. The picture quality is good with vibrant colors. While technically Cosmos comes with HDR technology that improves the dynamic color range of the projector, it is limited by its brightness. HDR content works best on projectors with high brightness. Most standard projectors have a brightness rating between 1,800 and 3,000 ANSI lumens, while Cosmos can only output 900 ANSI lumens. This limitation is evident in dark scenes where details may be lost. Anker’s Nebula Cosmos smart projector also supports HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma) technology for watching live TV broadcasts in high-quality.
A significant highlight of the Anker Nebula Cosmos smart projector is its image correction. It features a 3-second autofocus adjustment for projecting crisp and clear imagery. Despite having autofocus, the device enables users to adjust the focus manually. It also has auto vertical keystone correction (±40°) and manual horizontal keystone correction (±40°). Keystone correction makes image alignment easier and improves installation flexibility. These are essential features considering that it is a smart projector, and many users will use it as a portable device.
Even if you are planning to mount it, there will be no issues as the device supports front, rear, front ceiling, and rear ceiling projection modes. A screw connector at the bottom is provided for mounting the smart projector. As it is a relatively lightweight device weighing 2kg (70.5oz), it can be used both indoors and outdoors as long as there is a power outlet nearby. The smart projector supports dual-band Wi-Fi (2.4GHz/5GHz) for improved wireless connectivity. Users can install applications and stream content from the Internet by connecting the Nebula Cosmos smart home projector to their home’s Wi-Fi network. When it comes to USB media playback, a separate app is needed for playing files from flash drives or portable media. They won’t work out of the box, which is a bit disappointing.
The smart projector claims a true 360° audio experience through Dolby Digital Plus. Its integrated 20W speaker system outputs decent quality audio and will be adequate for casual listening. However, users may want to connect an external audio system for an immersive experience. A significant negative point of the projector is the lack of a 3.5 mm audio-out jack. Instead, it comes with an optical audio interface that limits the devices that you can directly attach to the projector. Anker Nebula Cosmos can also be used as a Bluetooth speaker for listening to music. Overall, the performance of the smart projector is pretty decent, but it has its limitations.
Anker Nebula Cosmos Review – Pros & Cons
Let us dive into the pros and cons of the Anker Nebula Cosmos smart projector before we summarize this review.
- Full HD (1080p) native resolution
- Android TV 9.0 OS
- Decent built-in speakers
- Google Play access
- Autofocus, keystone correction
- Low brightness rating for HDR
- No 3.5mm audio output
- Requires a separate app for USB playback
- RAM and storage could be better
- External power supply adaptor
Anker Nebula Cosmos Review – Summary: Is it Worth the Price?
Anker Nebula Cosmos is a smart projector for the consumer market. Its main highlight is its built-in Android 9.0 OS, which eliminates the need to buy an Android smart box separately. Users can access Play Store apps and Google Assistant on the device. It also supports Chromecast for screen mirroring. The hardware specifications are pretty good for an entertainment projector.
Anker Nebula Cosmos costs $799.99, which is a reasonable price considering the features set of this smart projector. The device excels at what it is primarily designed for despite a few limitations. It is far ahead of cheaper smart projectors, making it a suitable option for users who require a projector with an Android TV OS. If it is not a priority for you, there are standard projectors with a better brightness rating available in the market. Buyers may also consider Anker’s Nebula Cosmos Max with 4K UHD resolution, 1,500 ANSI lumens brightness rating, and Android TV 9.0 operating system, but at a higher price tag of $1,799.99. Otherwise, the Anker Nebula Cosmos smart projector is a well-rounded and worthy offering.
Anker Nebula Cosmos on Amazon: https://amzn.to/348Apgi