Hitachi CP-X443 review: Hitachi CP-X443

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The Good The Hitachi CP-X443 has enough brightness for large conference rooms; accurate colors; built-in LAN jack; great network-control program; assortment of connections; inexpensive.

The Bad The Hitachi CP-X443 has a low contrast ratio; cannot project images from a network.

The Bottom Line It's not the brightest in its class, nor does it have the most-extensive networking features. But the inexpensive Hitachi CP-X443 is a good all-round performer with excellent color.

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7.0 Overall
  • Design 7
  • Features 7
  • Performance 7
  • Support 7

Hitachi CP-X443: A multipurpose projector

Hitachi's long history of supporting networked projectors continues with the CP-X443, a compact, LAN-ready projector that offers an impressive set of features, better-than-average brightness, and a slew of connections. It also has excellent color balance and the best speakers we've encountered on a business projector. With a street price of $2,795, this projector will be as popular with users as it is with the bean counters.

For a networked projector, the Hitachi CP-X443 is definitely on the lighter side, weighing 8.4 pounds and measuring a petite 13.3 by 10.4 by 3.7 inches--less than half the size of the Canon LV-7565 or the Sanyo PLC-XP56. Inside, the projector has an LCD imaging engine with a 230-watt lamp. The native resolution is XGA, but the projector can display VGA and UXGA as well. Due to the projector's smaller size, it displays a smaller image that maxes out at 25 feet--equal to the Dell 5100MP's but much smaller than the Sanyo PLS-XP56's 46-foot image.

Setting up the CP-X443 is easy: a pair of adjustable legs lets you control the tilt angle. The combination of vertical and horizontal keystone correction will put a rectangular image onto almost any screen from almost any angle. We like the simplicity of the control panel atop the projector; unfortunately, it lacks volume buttons--surprising for a projector with four 3-watt speakers. The onscreen menu is well organized, with the most frequently used options bundled in an Easy menu and the more esoteric in an Advanced menu. The included remote has controls for adjusting all the settings (including volume). It also has buttons for navigating through a PowerPoint slide show, and it can function as a mouse.

The CP-X443 provides almost as many connections as the gold-standard Dell 5100MP. In addition to the standard RGB, video, S-Video, and audio jacks, the projector has component-video and DVI connectors and a second RGB input that lets you switch between two video sources. It also has RGB-out and audio-out jacks for desktop users. Our test unit included a power cord and cables for RGB, USB, and composite video.