Hisense PX2-PRO 4K projector review

hcchighreccomend Hisense's PX2-PRO promises plug-n-play bigscreen fun. Mark Craven give his smart TV some time off

Ultra-short-throw (UST) projectors have been around for a good while now, but it's only relatively recently that they've been deliberately pitched as flatscreen TV alternatives, rather than simply easier-to-install projectors. Some, including from Hisense, even come bundled with a screen, for an all-in-one solution, but the PX2-PRO tested here ships standalone, 
for use with either a spare wall or an optional screen.

Naturally, this brings the price down a bit – £2,299 versus the £2,499 of Hisense's 100L5HTUKD (with 
100in screen) and the £3,999 120in 120L9HTUKA.

An evolution of the Chinese company's earlier PX1-
PRO, this new beamer counts a few headline upgrades, including an increase in claimed brightness (delivered 
by its triple laser engine) to 2,400 ANSI Lumens, a 
switch from Android TV to the company's own VIDAA platform for streaming, and boosted connectivity.

Styling, identical to that of the PX-1, is similar to most other UST beamers – connections are on the (wall-side) rear, apart from a secondary side-mounted USB input, while a metal grille protects front-facing speaker drivers. There's no sliding roof here to cover the PX2-PRO's DLP-based optics when the PJ is off, but beyond that 
the unit is very well appointed. Yes, it's 52cm wide, 
but blends in well courtesy of a neat, grey aluminium chassis design that mixes curves and angles.

It's supplied with a black plastic remote that isn't as smart as the PJ hardware, although it's perfectly usable. Reflecting the PX-2 PRO's nature, it has keys for various streaming platforms, some expected (Netflix, Prime 
Video, Disney+, YouTube) and some not (Deezer, NBA League Pass). There are also keys to access the projector's menus, quickly adjust volume and laser brightness, and enter the VIDAA hub.


The PX2-PRO's ultra-short-throw lens delivers 90in-130in images from less than 50cm

This smart portal, also found on Hisense's TVs, is one 
of the best such platforms around. It's fast, intuitive, and packed with content (UK TV catchup apps, Apple TV+, BBC Sounds, etc). Coupled with the responsive remote, the experience is identical to using a TV, which is as it should be. Interestingly, in the US, the PX-2 PRO uses Google TV. I can't help think UK buyers get a better deal.

Missing from this second-generation of Hisense's PX model is a Freeview tuner, but with Freeview Play present and correct, plus the PX2-PRO's trio of HDMI inputs (two supporting ALLM, one offering eARC), many buyers might not miss it.

Where there's a wall...
From around 30cm, the PX-2 PRO will craft a 90in image, and you can pull it back to about 50cm for a 130in monster display. Hisense announced a 115in TV at this year's CES (HCC #349), but for picture size its 'Laser TV' projectors still have that beat.

Because it doesn't ship with a screen, presumably plenty of customers will be using the PJ straight onto a wall. There's no colour-compensation on offer for this, 
so firing it at your salmon pink feature wall is a no-go. 
Also be aware that a UST projector is ruthless at revealing imperfections in your paint finish and wall uniformity.

At first it might seem as if the PJ is literally plonk-and-play, because Hisense doesn't make its image geometry adjustments easy to find. The manual tells you to go to 
the Screen setup menu, but you actually need to head for Console Settings in the System section – there are auto and manual options here, the latter preferable.

Otherwise, the menus are what you would expect of a flatscreen TV, with sharpness, contrast, colour saturation, etc, next to adaptive contrast and Ultra Smooth Motion. More deep-dive tweaking, including gamma and colour management, is found in an Expert Settings hub.

Hisense rates the PX-2 PRO's in-built sound system 
at 2 x 15W, and it performs favourably to that of many a mid-range telly. With Iron Man 3 (Disney+), it showcased dynamic eagerness, so that the sounds of clanking metal and thruster engines during the Air Force Once rescue scene had bite and slam, as did the orchestral score. Dolby Atmos processing, on by default, gave a nicely expanded soundstage. Dialogue never quite seems to 
fully project, however, and it's not the smoothest-sounding of speaker systems overall.

Packing a punch
The PX2-PRO extracts plenty of mileage from its triple-laser light engine, presenting images with agreeable contrast and colour punch even in ambient light conditions. 
Some light control is desired, but as long as you steer 
clear of letting the projector do battle with floods of daylight you'll find it's a good all-round solution.


Ethernet is offered as an alternative to the PX2-PRO's built-in Wi-Fi, alongside three HDMIs, USB and analogue/digital audio outputs

There's a surfeit of image presets and settings to experiment with, and cinephiles will want to get their hands dirty, as even Hisense's Cinema Day and Cinema Night presets come with a degree of Ultra Smooth Motion processing applied. In fairness, this is very accomplished, making pictures appear smooth and slick without exaggerated artefacts, but for a filmic presentation you'll want it to set it to 'Film' (the latter kicks in when you select PX-2 PRO's Filmmaker Mode setting).

Colour saturation seems to be aggressively pushed, giving reds in aparticular an unnatural appearance both with SDR and some HDR material. The swarming red 
shirts during a Liverpool vs Chelsea football match (BBC iPlayer), and the billboard advertisements around Anfield, appeared almost luminous at times. Thankfully, knocking the PJ's colour saturation tool a good way down from its 50 setting proved beneficial, as it did with the Gerard Butler thriller Plane, streaming in HDR10 from Amazon, where otherwise flesh tones appeared rather peaky.

Such worries were gone with Dolby Vision material, where the PJ locks into DV Bright Mode by default (Dark and Custom are alternatives). Encanto (Disney+) presented a colour-rich but well balanced image with 
a solid feeling of HDR dynamism. Small highlights on 
the characters' jewellery or the candles around the Casa Madrigal had agreeable zing. The picture was crisp too, inviting close inspection of the detailed animation. Mirabel's 'Waiting on a Miracle' set-piece, with its golden light show and fireworks explosion, was a delight.

Black levels aren't mind-blowing, but are at least uniform, compared to the irregular blooming of an LED-
lit screen. Shadow details in Encanto weren't crushed; 
there was just an absence of genuine black to the night-time skies, the nooks of the house, and Mirabel's hair. 
This makes the PX2-PRO less of a show-stopper when viewing scenes that are largely dark, such as the night-time heroics of Predator prequel Prey (4K Blu-ray). When Naru sits around the fire gearing up to battle the angry alien, 
the contrast between her firelit face and the surrounding darkness is a bit constrained. Elsewhere, however, the PJ drew sharp, eye-filling pictures with plenty of depth.

All-round appeal
An affordable DLP projector not offering stygian blacks 
is nothing new, so better to highlight the PX2-PRO's strengths: image sharpness, HDR impact and colour vibrancy all impress here, and there are ample settings to fine-tune its pictures. The projector's onboard speaker array has the ability to further draw you in, while its smart skills, styling and ease of use are notable. As an all-round package, Hisense's beamer is a brilliant proposition.

HCC Verdict: 4.5/5

Hisense PX2-PRO
Price: £2,299

We say: Hisense's latest 'Laser Cinema' model excels in terms of smart skill and usability, and delivers captivating 4K HDR visuals and solid sonics. Be prepared to tweak its presets, though.


3D: No 4K: Via DLP mirror-flashing HDR: Yes. HDR10; HDR10+; Dolby Vision; HLG CONNECTIONS: 3 x HDMI (one with eARC); optical digital audio output; 3.5mm audio output; Ethernet; 2 x USB BRIGHTNESS (CLAIMED): 2,400 Lumens CONTRAST (claimed): 1,000:1 (native) ZOOM: No DIMENSIONS: 520(w) x 160(h) x 324(d)mm WEIGHT: 9.2kg

FEATURES: 'X-Fusion' RGB laser light source rated at 25,000 hours; claimed 107% REC.2020 colour space coverage; 90-130in projection size; 0.25:1 throw ratio; Dolby Vision Bright/Dark/Custom modes; Filmmaker Mode; Ultra Smooth Motion; colour management; auto geometric correction; VIDAA smart system with apps including Netflix, Disney+ and Prime Video; Freeview Play catch-up; 2 x 15W audio system

Hisense UK