Portable projectors are a very convenient thing for people who often move from place to place and want to be able to watch videos in comfort. ASUS ZenBeam L2 is just such a model, designed to quickly create a large movie screen almost anywhere.


ASUS ZenBeam L2 specifications

Resolution 1920 x 1080 dots
Matrix type DLP
Light source type RGB LED
Lamp life 30 thousand hours
Light flux 400 ANSI lumens (960 LED lumens)
Projection ratio 1,2:1
Projection distance 0,8-3,2 m
Screen diagonal 30-120”
Noise level up to 30 dB
HDR support HDR10
Operating system Android TV box
Connectivity 1х HDMI, 1x micro-HDMI (для TV box), 1x USB-A, 1x USB-C (with DisplayPort and Power Delivery), headphone mini-jack
Power consumption (maximum) up to 90 W
Battery 65 Watt-hours
Audio Harman Kardon, 10 W
Dimensions (WxHxD) 132 x 172 x 132 mm
Weight 1,57 kg
Recommended price in Ukraine 26 699 UAH


Package contents

The projector comes with a rubberized travel bag, a power supply, and, quite unexpectedly, a separate Android TV mini-player with a remote control.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV



ZenBeam L2 is quite similar to its predecessor, Latte L1: it also looks like a compact cylinder similar to a smart speaker. However, the second generation has become significantly larger and heavier: the L2’s “diameter” is 132 mm compared to 90 for the L1, and its height is 172 mm compared to 131. But the weight has changed the most: ZenBeam L2 weighs more than 1.5 kg, which is almost three times more than Latte L1. In short, the new projector no longer looks like a latte cup, which is probably why the word disappeared from its name.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

The controls are located on the top cover: a 5-way joystick (which can also adjust the volume), a Back button, a Splendid menu, and a video input selection.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

And it’s really a lid, not just the top panel of the case with this design: it’s held on by magnets, and under it you can find… a compartment for the Android TV player that comes with the projector.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

The player is connected to the projector via USB-C and microHDMI connectors and is additionally fixed with a special “latch”.

The main part of the body is a dark gray metal mesh with a lens on one side and a power button on the other.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

For easy carrying, ZenBeam L2 has a brown eco-leather handle. The mesh hides the ventilation holes (on the sides and back) and the speaker hole (in the front). The lens does not have a retractable shutter, instead it is covered with a protective glass.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

All connectors are located at the bottom behind the lens. Here you’ll find a full-size HDMI input, USB Type-C with DisplayPort and Power Delivery (7.5W), a full-size USB port, a power connector (also as USB-C), a mini-jack for wired headphones, and a power indicator.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

And finally, there is a retractable leg with two positions at the bottom, which can be used to change the projection angle and, accordingly, the height of the screen.

You can also see the tripod socket here: ZenBeam L2 can be mounted on a tripod or suspended from the ceiling.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV


Hardware platform

Like its predecessor, the ASUS ZenBeam L2 is an LED projector with DLP (Digital Light Processing) projection technology. The lamp life in normal mode is claimed to be 30 thousand hours, the noise level is up to 30 dB in standard mode and up to 28 dB in eco mode.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

The resolution has been increased from 720p in Latte L1 to Full HD, and the maximum lumen output has also been increased from 300 LED lumens to 960 (400 ANSI lumens). So, as you can see, the projector has received a significant upgrade.

The projector is equipped with a 10W Harman Kardon speaker system and a built-in 65Wh battery, which, according to the manufacturer, should be enough for 3.5 hours of battery life.

As for the smart platform, we see a completely different approach: while Latte L1 had its own Android TV platform based on the Snapdragon chipset, ZenBeam L2 uses a separate player that connects to the projector and “hides” in its body.

The player’s model is HAKO mini (DV6068Y) produced by SDMC, a miniature HDMI dongle based on the Amlogic chipset: 4 Cortex-A53 cores operating at frequencies up to 1800 MHz, Mali-G31 MP2 GPU, 2 GB of DRAM, 4 GB of internal storage.

Accordingly, wireless communication is provided by the player (Wi-Fi 2.4/5GHz + Bluetooth 5.0), while the projector itself does not have a wireless module. The player is equipped with a typical compact remote control with a minimum of buttons and support for voice control.


In the works

ZenBeam L2 turns on quite quickly for an Android TV device: in about 40 seconds it’s completely ready to go. The projector has automatic signal source detection, and if nothing is connected to it via HDMI or USB-C, Android TV will be automatically selected.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

Everything is typical here, the HAKO mini media player has a standard Android TV shell without any additional launchers or manufacturer-installed applications. The operating system is updated to version 12, has support for Chromecast, Google Assistant, the app store, and more – in short, standard Android TV functionality. The only caveat: HAKO mini has a 4K resolution, but since the projector has a Full HD resolution, it’s better to switch to it in the player settings.

The projector immediately performs autofocus and keystone correction after turning it on or changing its position; you can further adjust both parameters in the on-screen menu if desired.

In addition to these, the main menu screen includes signal sources, Splendid video mode selection (which is replaced by battery mode if the projector is unplugged), sound optimization, and more.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

In the settings, you can also choose the position of the projector relative to the screen, the color of the wall on which the image is projected (to compensate for its hue), make standard brightness/contrast settings, manually adjust focus and keystone distortion, and more.

In addition to the buttons on the body, the projector can also be controlled using the remote control: it is “suitable” not only for its own media player, but also for ZenBeam L2 itself: the white buttons under YouTube and Netflix launch fast autofocus and the on-screen menu.

By the way, the remote control has a little bit of an incomprehensible thing that came to light during testing: for some reason, voice search worked only if it was activated with the hardware button on the remote control; if you pressed the microphone button in the search bar in the Android TV interface, the player did not “hear” anything.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

The presence of a full-size USB port allows you to connect external drives, including USB HDDs, to the projector – there is enough power. And although ZenBeam L2 does not have its own smart shell, the user can play content from such drives not only on Android TV, but also with the projector itself.

If you go to Setup in the system menu, you will find File Manager on the second page, the last item after Reset All and System Update. In it, you can see not only the file structure of the projector itself (which, by the way, also shows that it runs on an Android-based system), but also the USB device connected to it.

The functionality of the built-in video player is rather limited: a certain number of test video files had problems with either sound or video playback, but in any case, ZenBeam L2 has the ability to run video from a USB flash drive on its own.

The on-screen menu also has a Light Wall mode setting: it’s a kind of “screensaver” and when the projector is not in use, it can show various relaxation animations grouped into four categories.

The built-in 10 W speaker produces quite a loud and balanced sound, with decent high frequencies, a good middle and even a certain amount of “bass”: in general, the sound of ZenBeam L2 is approximately at the level of a decent Bluetooth speaker of compact size.


Image quality

ASUS ZenBeam L2 does not have the ability to scale the image, so the diagonal is adjusted by changing the distance from the projector to the screen. According to the passport data, the minimum working distance is 80 cm and the maximum is 3.2 m: this allows you to get a screen with a diagonal of 30 to 120 inches.

ASUS ZenBeam L2 review: portable projector with battery and Android TV

All measurements were made not on a special projection screen, but on a blank white wall: this is the main use case for a mobile projector with a built-in battery and a travel case included.

The brightest mode among all those offered in the Splendid menu was User Mode with brightness increased from 80% to 100% and Normal color temperature.

From two meters away (75″ diagonal), the white field brightness is 50 cd/m² – for example, a conventional desktop monitor will find such a screen even a little too bright in complete darkness. From a distance of 1 m (respectively, the diagonal is half as large, 37.5″), the brightness rises to 190 cd/m², which is more than enough even for a brightly lit office space.

And finally, if you want to create an analog of a conventional 27-inch monitor, you’ll need a screen distance of 72 cm – in this case, the maximum brightness will jump up to 345 cd/m², which is significantly higher than most typical desktop monitors. As for the contrast, we got the maximum value of 350:1, which is a bit lower than the “passport data” (400:1), but we can assume that the manufacturer indicates the contrast value on a special screen.

It should be noted that at one time we had the opportunity to get acquainted with the previous generation model. Its luminous flux was significantly lower (almost three times, according to the characteristics), and it was noticeable: ZenBeam Latte L1, despite the same official data on screen size and working distance, actually created a comfortable image at a distance of up to one and a half meters, with a diagonal of up to 60″ – further it was already noticeably dim.

ZenBeam L2 has an extended color gamut: it covers the sRGB space almost everywhere except the dark blue zone, and is 82% Adobe RGB (88% DCI-P3). The gamut curve perfectly matches the standard value of 2.2, and the color temperature is significantly overestimated: the Warm mode (7300K) is the closest to the standard 6500K.

Overall, the image quality is very high: for a portable projector, it’s bright enough even at very large diagonals, the clarity at the periphery decreases slightly, and chromatic aberrations in the corners are also insignificant. Colors are saturated, natural-looking, and Full HD resolution is enough in almost any situation, except for a very large diagonal and a short distance to the screen.

ZenBeam L2 handles dark areas of the image well, with almost no loss of detail in the shadows. Light areas are a bit more complicated: in high-brightness modes, the projector can “bleach out” light transitions between halftones, in which case it may be better to switch to the more moderate Eco mode, which practically does not have this drawback (though its maximum brightness is also lower than the others).

You can visually compare Splendid’s video modes in the following gallery. From left to right: Bright – Standard – Theater – Eco – Scenery – Game – User: