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Happrun H1 Review

This super low-budget projector is the best of the worst we tested, but it doesn't compete with traditionally priced models
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Happrun H1 Review (The Happrun H1, with its elegant appearance, stands out as the top choice among the budget projectors we've tested.)
The Happrun H1, with its elegant appearance, stands out as the top choice among the budget projectors we've tested.
Credit: Matt Lighthart
Price:  $80 List
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Manufacturer:   Happrun
By Sentry Kelly and Adam Stout  ⋅  Mar 22, 2024
45
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 11
  • Entertainment - 30% 3.7
  • Business - 30% 6.2
  • Contrast Ratio - 15% 3.2
  • Brightness - 15% 2.4
  • Set up/Use - 5% 5.0
  • Input Lag - 5% 9.3

Our Verdict

Like all of the ultra-low-budget projectors, the Happrun H1 leaves a lot to be desired. Unlike some of those, it's actually usable if the environment is just right; just don't expect too much from it. Aside from being attractive and portable, the H1 has very little going for it, but it will transpose an image to a screen if that's all you're asking. See how this ultra-budget projector compares to more traditionally priced units in our comprehensive projector review.
REASONS TO BUY
Cheap
Small
Portable
Controls on top
Nice looking
REASONS TO AVOID
Poor picture quality
Projects very dim images
Bare basic functions

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happrun h1
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Happrun H1
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Price $80 List
$89.99 at Amazon
$428 List
$399.99 at Amazon
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$499.99 at Amazon
$430 List
$369.99 at Amazon
$100 List
$65.57 at Amazon
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Bottom Line If your expectations are low and you're deadset on an ultra-low-budget projector, this is the one to getA very bright projector that excels in an office environment and offers a decent movie experienceAn entry-level cinema projector with smart features at a reasonable priceThis basic projector offers straightforward functionality well suited for office useA no-frills mini projector for the leanest budget and lowest expectations
Rating Categories Happrun H1 ViewSonic PA503W Epson EpiqVision Fl... Epson EpiqVision Fl... TMY Mini
Entertainment (30%)
3.7
6.8
6.4
5.9
2.8
Business (30%)
6.2
7.8
6.3
6.5
5.9
Contrast Ratio (15%)
3.2
9.0
9.4
8.7
2.0
Brightness (15%)
2.4
9.5
7.6
7.7
2.0
Set up/Use (5%)
5.0
4.9
6.7
4.9
4.4
Input Lag (5%)
9.3
9.1
4.0
8.2
9.3
Specs Happrun H1 ViewSonic PA503W Epson EpiqVision Fl... Epson EpiqVision Fl... TMY Mini
Measured ANSI Lumens 249 Lumens 2664 Lumens 2003 Lumens 2061 Lumens 119 Lumens
Measured Fan Noise 45 dBA 41 dBA 42 dBA 38 dBA 30 dBA
Measured ANSI Contrast Ratio 43:5 775:26 619:20 638:23 41:10
Measured Input Lag 46 ms 48 ms 82 ms 54 ms 46 ms
Measured Dimensions (L x D x H) 9.3" x 8.1" x 3.5" 11.6" x 8.6" x 4.3" 12.5" x 8.3" x 3.4" 11.6" x 8.3" x 3.4" 7" x 5.31" x 2.76"
Measured Weight 3.5 lbs 4.9 lbs 5.7 lbs 5.3 lbs 2 lbs
Projection Technology LCD DLP 3LCD 3LCD 3LCD
Light Source Lamp Lamp Lamp Lamp Lamp
Claimed Brightness 9500 Lumens 3600 Lumens 3000 Lumens 3000 Lumens 7500 Lumens
Carrying Case Included No No No No No
Native Resolution 1920 x 1080 1280 x 800 1920 x 1080 1280 x 800 1280 x 720
Smart Streaming Capability? No No Yes No No
Contrast Ratio 10,000:1 22,000:1 Not Specified Not Specified 5,000:1
Aspect Ratio Not Specified Native 16:10 Native 16:9 Native 16:10 Native 16:9
Zoom Ratio Not Specified 1.0 - 1.1 1.0 - 1.35 1.0 - 1.35 Not Specified
Throw Ratio (Wide to Zoom) Not Specified 1.55 - 1.70 1.19 - 1.61 1.27 - 1.71 Not Specified
Backlit Remote No No No No No
Vertical Keystoning Correction Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Horizontal Keystoning Correction No No No No No
Lens Shift No No No No No
Lens Cover Yes No No No No
3D Capable No Yes No No No

Our Analysis and Test Results

Like other ultra-low-budget projectors, the Happrun H1 falls short in most aspects. However, it can be viable under specific conditions, though its capabilities are limited. We appreciate its stylish looks and portable form factor, and it might be worthwhile if your budget is limited and your expectations for a projector at this price are realistic.

Performance Comparison


happrun h1 - the happrun h1, with its elegant appearance, stands out as the top...
The Happrun H1, with its elegant appearance, stands out as the top choice among the ultra-cheap projectors we tested.
Credit: Matt Lighthart


Entertainment


As an entertainment-oriented projector meant to excel at projecting pleasing color-accurate movie scenes and photo slideshows in a home theater setting, the Happrun H1 underwhelmed our testers. It's entirely too dim for an enjoyable experience, even in a dark room, but if your budget and your expectations are both super low, then you can snag this unit for a fraction of the cost of a traditional home theater projector and technically watch movies with it.


As we mentioned, the Happrun H1's picture is very dim and dark, and the colors are inaccurate, but it has decent clarity compared to all other units with similar prices. Just know that the larger you try to project the image on the screen, the less focused your picture will be with this or any of the sub-$100 models. Lastly, and unsurprisingly for the price, the H1 has no smart features to stream movies or mirror content from your mobile devices, so it didn't pick up any points there.

Here's a look at the vast quality disparity between an ultra-budget projector and a premium home cinema projector.
Credit: Matt Lighthart

Business


In the exact same ways that the Happrun H1 struggles in the entertainment category, it fails as a serious business projector. Sure, it will technically transpose an image from your laptop onto a screen, but unless you're doing business in pitch darkness, it's unlikely that your audience will be able to read anything onscreen.


To make matters worse, edge-to-edge screen clarity on the H1 is abysmal, particularly in spreadsheets. Nevertheless, the Happrun H1 is somewhat bright compared to the other ultra-cheap projectors. We still don't recommend this or any of those projectors for business use.

Although it has a poor selection of ports (1x HMDI,2x USB, 1 video, audio in/out), the H1 comes with a remote control and onboard function buttons, zoom, and a focus ring accessible from the top of the projector. We appreciate that convenience and redundancy in a business projector.

happrun h1 - while it's better than projectors in its price bracket, the happrun...
While it's better than projectors in its price bracket, the Happrun H1 isn't ideal for office use.
Credit: Matt Lighthart

Contrast


Happrun specifies a 10,000:1 contrast ratio for the H1, but we measured a 43:5 ratio in our ANSI contrast test with a light meter.


Once again, this projector is better than the others in its super-low price zone, but it pails in comparison to more traditional options. Expect washed-out images with little distinction between whites, blacks, and midtones.

happrun h1 - we measure real-world contrast with a light meter and the ansi...
We measure real-world contrast with a light meter and the ANSI contrast test. The Happrun H1 does not live up to its claimed 10,000:1 contrast.
Credit: Matt Lighthart

Brightness


As we've established by this point in the review, the Happrun H1 is a very dim projector. It just cannot stand with more serious projectors outside of the crazy cheap segment, but amongst those lowly few, it is the brightest. We mean that figuratively and literally.


The H1 claims 400 lumens but averaged 249 lumens in our ANSI lumens test. Believe it or not, that's double the output of some of the other super-cheap projectors, but over ten times dimmer than some of the brightest units we tested.

Compare the brightness and contrast of the Happrun H1 (top) with a premium cinema projector (bottom).
Credit: Matt Lighthart

Setup & Use


The Happrun H1 is slightly below average in setup and use. It doesn't come with any fancy or innovative features to speak of. It only has manual zoom, one manually adjustable front leg for leveling, and an integrated place to mount it to a tripod or ceiling. The machine can only correct with verticle keystoning, solving those pesky trapezoids you might come across when installing your device. Unfortunately, it does not solve other scenarios, say you cannot line up your projector right in front of the screen due to an obstacle because it lacks horizontal keystoning.


The H1 comes with a basic remote control, and it is one of the only units in the review to feature two speakers instead of one. However, there is no specified power rating for them, and they aren't too impressive in volume or sound quality.

happrun h1 - we like the integrated tripod/ceiling mounting point on the h1, not...
We like the integrated tripod/ceiling mounting point on the H1, not least of all for making this Star Wars droid vibe possible.
Credit: Matt Lighthart

Input Lag


The only area where the most basic projectors tend to outdo the premium projectors is in low input lag, and the Happrun H1 is more proof of that. Input lag may not be crucial if you're not planning to use a projector for gaming where milliseconds matter, but if you do fall into that particular use case scenario, look for a more basic projector or a projector with a dedicated gaming mode.


When taken to task with our video input lag test device, the H1 averaged a speedy 46 millisecond response time across the top, middle, and bottom of the screen. That's nearly the best response time we've ever recorded from a projector. It's too bad that video quality and brightness aren't on par, or this could be a cost-effective way to play video games on the big screen.

happrun h1
Credit: Matt Lighthart

Should You Buy the Happrun H1?


If you're only interested in ultra-cheap projectors and can live with their many downsides, this is the one to get. It's sleek-looking and portable, and it will reliably transpose an image onto a screen in a dark room. If you have even remotely high standards for picture quality and screen legibility, skip this class of projector entirely.

happrun h1 - the elegant-looking happrun h1 is the best of the worst projectors...
The elegant-looking Happrun H1 is the best of the worst projectors we've ever tested.
Credit: Matt Lighthart

What Other Projector Should You Consider?


If you're not deadset on an ultra-budget projector, we recommend you spend a few hundred more and get the bright and versatile ViewSonic PA503W. It is well worth the investment with a substantial boost in performance. If you do want something stylish and premium, though, look into the Hisense C1 Laser.

Sentry Kelly and Adam Stout