Samsung’s product range has room for all kinds of devices. And although in our country the company is primarily known for its TVs, smartphones and home appliances, it also offers interesting multimedia products, such as projectors. And not only for complete home theatre packages, like an ultra-short-throw Samsung The Premiere, but also more compact solutions, like our “guest” today, Samsung The Freestyle portable screen, which is more than just a projector and which can help you create comfortable conditions for a movie session almost everywhere.
Samsung The Freestyle features
|1920 x 1080 pixels
|Light source type
|Lamp life in normal mode
|20 thousand hours
|Luminous power in normal mode
|550 LED lumens
|Micro-HDMI 1.4, Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.2, USB-C (power)
|Power Consumption (maximum)
|102.4 x 172.8 x 95.2 mm
|Recommended price in Ukraine
|26 999 UAH
In the box you can find the remote control, USB-C cable and power supply. Basically, it’s everything you need to get started, but it would be great to have an additional HDMI-cable to connect external video sources, especially since the projector is equipped with a Micro HDMI input, and such cables are not very common.
Optionally you can purchase various accessories, such as a protective case, external removable battery or removable rubber pads for the body of the device.
Samsung The Freestyle least of all looks like a multimedia projector. The device rather resembles some compact lighting equipment. The body is a white cylinder, 13 cm long and 9.5 cm in diameter, on a thin stand, which can rotate 180 degrees and allows you to direct it as you wish — either horizontally, vertically upwards, or at another angle.
The top of the cylinder is closed by a protective semitransparent cover which “hides” the lens, sensor volume control and LIDAR scanner sensors. On the side you will find a USB-C power connector (cannot be used for data transfer), a Micro HDMI video input and a built-in microphone switch.
At the bottom of the device’s body there is a perforation hole. Behind it you can see a fairly large speaker, a wall mount and a connector for additional accessories, such as battery.
The portable screen comes with a typical Samsung smart remote control. It’s small, with the necessary minimum of buttons, easy to hold. It connects with the projector via Bluetooth.
Samsung The Freestyle — LED-projector with the DLP (Digital Light Processing) technology. Lamp life in normal mode is 20 thousand hours, resolution — 1920х1080 pixels, maximum luminous power equals 50 lumens. Maximum noise level in normal mode is 30 dB, so this projector is pretty quiet. Besides, Samsung The Freestyle has an inbuilt 5W speaker.
How Samsung The Freestyle works
The projector turns on quickly and is almost ready for use. Image adjustment is automatic. Samsung The Freestyle evaluates the angle at which it is pointed at the screen or wall in a few seconds and corrects the “trapezium” accordingly. And thanks to the built-in LIDAR scanner the projector is even able to estimate the distance to the screen and adjust the image sharpness by itself. And if automatic focusing doesn’t work for you, you can do it manually in the system settings.
There is an additional possibility to automatically calibrate the projector for owners of compatible Samsung smartphones: with the help of a special utility the smartphone will perform this procedure on its own, all you need to do is to point its camera to the screen. It is very convenient in the case when instead of the screen you use a section of wall which is not white or gray. The calibration compensates its shade effectively.
The size of the screen is regulated by the distance to the projection surface. According to the official characteristics, from a distance of 80 cm you can get a screen with a diagonal of 30″, from two meters – 75″; the maximum distance is 2.7 m, in which case the Samsung The Freestyle will create an image diagonal of 100 inches. If you wish, you can reduce the image (up to 50% of the maximum) in the system settings and change the screen position. This can be useful when you do not need a very large screen, and putting the projector closer to the wall is not possible.
Samsung The Freestyle has its own “smart” shell, based on the proprietary Tizen OS. The main screen resembles Android TV and similar systems: a vertical menu on the left and the contents of the selected section in the center. These can be: the search window, the recommended content feeds and installed applications in Media, the activation of Ambient mode and system settings in Menu.
You can configure the projector using the traditional remote control or you can use SmartThings utility on your smartphone. It can also be used as a virtual remote control.
Ambient mode is similar to Samsung TVs. The user can display different images, static or dynamic or display their own photos. A new option is the ability to create colored lighting in the room using a translucent lens cover.
It is possible to connect an external device wired to Samsung The Freestyle only via Micro HDMI. The USB-C connector is used for power only. However, the projector does have a wireless option in the PC on Screen menu. You can connect a PC or Mac or a Samsung smartphone using the Samsung Dex function. If you have Windows, you need to download a proprietary utility Easy Connection to Screen to your computer and set it to communicate with the projector. The input delay is present, but insignificant.
Samsung The Freestyle acoustic system is a single inbuilt 5W speaker, which produces sound at 360°. However, it can pleasantly surprise the user. The speaker has sufficient volume and unexpectedly very high-quality sound with clean high, natural “middle” and even good mid-low frequencies. The speaker sounded good and loud enough up to ~80 Hz, in the range of 60-80 Hz the sound faded out, but still remained at a decent level. It was completely silent at the level of 40-45 Hz. In fact, quite an unexpected result, as for the inbuilt speaker.
From a minimum recommended distance of 80 cm (30″ screen diagonal), the brightness of a plain white surface in Graphics mode is 180 cd/m² which is significantly higher than the recommended brightness of a desktop monitor in office use mode. At this brightness, you can use the projector even in a room with fairly strong ambient light. The only detail you need to take into account is that the black color of the image will look light gray. However, for work at the computer, when you do not need a saturated image with deep black, Samsung The Freestyle is quite suitable even in the daytime or in typical office lighting. At about 70-80″ diagonal, the brightness of the screen is at ~50 cd/m² . That’s more than enough to produce a bright, cinematic image in the dark.
Image quality is great. Sharpness in the periphery is reduced, but not critically. Chromatic aberrations in the corners are also quite moderate. The color gamma is a little better than standard. There are two options of gamma in the settings, in Local mode it is maximum, in Auto it narrows to the sRGB space, which makes the colors a little “calmer”.
For your own content (videos on YouTube or streaming services) and for wirelessly connected devices, the projector has three image modes: Dynamic, Standard, and Movie. Dynamic has the brightest image, so it is suitable for using the projector in a bright room. Standard is quieter, slightly dimmer, but with higher contrast and a noticeably cooler tone: it’s good for most uses. Finally, Movie mode is best for movie sessions, with a noticeably warmer image and an image parameter setting that works well for both highlights and shadows without losing detail.
There are two modes for video received via HDMI: Graphics and Entertainment. They are quite similar to Movie and Dynamic modes in terms of image parameters, so for everyday use of the projector in a dark room, especially for viewing video or photos from a PC, we would recommend Graphic mode, and if you want to get the brightest possible image, Entertainment mode.