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Boxlight CP745ES Portable Multipurpose LCD Projector Review

Portable Multipurpose LCD Video Projector Review & Buying Guide

By Anthony Marsh – September 26, 2008

Manufacturer: www.boxlight.com

Boxlight CP745ES Portable Multipurpose LCD Projector

Despite its compact and portable design, the Boxlight CP745ES delivers top-notch performance for all of your presentation needs. With 2600 lumens worth of output, and a variety of auto features for brightness and keystone correction, the CP745ES is an impressive projector that's guaranteed to satisfy.

Overview / First Impressions / Performance / Final Thoughts / Detailed Specifications

  • Two lamp modes (normal and economic) allow you to tailor your presentations according to your needs while more efficiently regulating lamp power usage
  • 3-D comb filtering works wonders with video quality by eliminating image artifacts
  • Lumen output and lamp life are extended via Auto Brightness which automatically adjusts for ambient light
  • Auto keystone correction automatically corrects those distorted images with just the press of a button
  • A comprehensive array of useful and practical user menu options that give you precise control over your projector
  • Simple and fully-functional remote which does double-duty as a mouse and offers an ultra-handy laser pointer
  • Unplug & Go feature says no to projector cool down wait times and yes to immediate power offs once your presentation is done
  • Comes with a handy carrying case
  • Unbeatable three-year parts and labor warranty with 90-day lamp replacement guarantee
  • Living in a mostly CD-only, paper manual-free world isn’t quite so convenient
  • HDMI or Component inputs would’ve been a great bonus, but as far multipurpose presentation projectors go, this one has all the inputs you’ll really need


Boxlight CP745ES Highlights:

  • 1024 x 768 XGA (native) / 1280 x 1024 SXGA (supported) resolution
  • 2600 ANSI lumens (Normal)
  • 500:1 advertised contrast ratio
  • HTPS TFT 3-LCD display
  • Offers VGA, S-Video, and Composite connectivity
  • 3-D comb filtering offers improved video quality and clarity
  • Auto brightness automatically adjusts for ambient light, prolonging lamp life
  • Automatic keystone correction combats image distortion with the touch of a button
  • Up to 3000 hours of lamp life (Eco)
  • Three-year parts and labor warranty with a 90-day lamp guarantee

MSRP:          $1,595.00 (USD)
Street Price:  $1,299.00 (USD)


For those of you looking for a cost-effective projector solution for your business and academic needs that doesn’t skimp on quality and performance, look no further than Boxlight’s CP745ES LCD projector. Offering 2600 ANSI lumens of power to brighten any room, and a whole host of practical and easy-to-use features like auto brightness and auto keystone correction, this is the multipurpose presentation projector sure to satisfy everyone’s needs.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS – Boxlight LCD Projector

Style & Appearance

Weighing in at a lean and mean 6.4 pounds (2.9 kgs.), with inconspicuous dimensions measuring in at (WxDxH): 12.1 x 10.5 x 3.7 inches (30.7 x 26.7 x 9.4 cm), the Boxlight CP745ES is perfectly portable like any worthwhile multipurpose projector should be. From a design perspective, Boxlight has stuck with the very same blueprint that's been used on the CP718E and the CP755EW, and this is a good thing, as all three models share a sleek, stylish design that comes in a silver finish with black accents.

Boxlight CP745ES Portable Multipurpose LCD Projector Sliding Lens Cover

As is customary with most Boxlight projectors, the CP745ES features a fixed lens cover, this one of the sliding variety. It can be found on the right-hand side of the projector, where most of the other features are. Above the lens and on top of the projector you’ll find all the hard-top buttons that include Power, Menu, Auto, and keystone adjusting. There’s also power and lamp light indicators to round things out. The right side of the projector offers all of the inputs, and under the projector, also on the right-hand side you’ll find a slot that can be used to insert a business card. I’m not sure if this is an entirely neat or an entirely strange feature, but it could definitely act as a conversation starter. In close proximity to the business card slot is the air filter that snaps off for quick and easy replacement. The slim-pickings, left-hand side of the CP745ES LCD projector offers the air vent that’s across from, and angled away from, the lens. Under the projector, and perfectly in line with the air vent, you’ll find the bulb replacement compartment which can be accessed via a simple turn of the screw. On either side of the projector, you’ll also find two height-adjustable legs should you need more lift in your projection.

Getting Connected

Nicely laid out and clearly labeled, the CP745ES offers you all of the requisite inputs you’d expect out of a multipurpose presentation projector: two VGA inputs, one for an external monitor, one USB input for turning the remote control into a mouse for PC-based apps, an audio output for external speakers, and an audio input for PC audio jacks. On the video end, you have inputs for S-Video (one) and Composite (one) respectively.

Boxlight CP745ES Portable Multipurpose LCD Projector Input Connections

As mentioned briefly above, the inputs can be found on the right side of the projector as opposed to the more traditional rear. As a manufacturer, Boxlight in particular does this often, and in my estimations, this is a great touch which eliminates the hassle of having to often times turn the projector around when needing to connect.

Remote Control

Not much to say here really. The remote control for the Boxlight CP745ES is black in color and offers all of the standard issue features you’d find with most other brands of projector remote controls. Compact and ergonomically designed, there are a couple of distinguishing characteristics of this remote control, namely the laser pointer feature to highlight those key points during your presentation, as well as the ability to turn the remote into a full-fledged mouse via a USB connection from your PC to the projector. You have a circular scroll button, as well as left and right buttons which act the same way as they would on your traditional PC mouse. Boxlight CP745ES Portable Multipurpose LCD Projector Remote Control

PERFORMANCE – Boxlight LCD Projector


The CP745ES affords you a swift and easy learning curve when it comes to setting up. Above the lens you’ll find the focus ring and the zoom ring which offers a 1.2:1 zoom ratio. While that may appear somewhat limiting, it’s certainly in keeping with the specs of pretty much all multipurpose presentation projectors, and surprisingly, the CP745ES offers astoundingly short-throw capabilities, highlighted by being able to project a 100-inch image at just over 9.5 feet, and just under 12 feet.

Additionally, this projector offers a vertical keystone adjustment of plus or minus 30 degrees, as well as Auto Keystone which does all the adjustment work for you, assuring a distortion-free image every time. In keeping in the auto vein, the Boxlight CP745ES also offers Auto Brightness which adjusts lamp output based on ambient light sources, thereby extending lamp life in the process, as well as Auto search which automatically detects your input source without having to scroll through the list yourself. All three of these features are handy-dandy ways to simplify the projection process so you can focus on the finer points of your presentation.

In the interests of maintaining this Boxlight love-fest, it should be noted that as per all the input options available on the CP745ES, Boxlight also provides you with all of the necessary cables, aside from just a power cord. The projector comes equipped with a VGA cable, a USB cable, an S-Video cable, a Composite cable, as well as the audio cables. If all that Santa-like generosity wasn’t enough, Boxlight has even thrown in an extra air filter and a carrying case, making portability with this projector even more convenient.

Boxlight CP745ES Portable Multipurpose LCD Projector Carrying Case

No projector set-up is truly ever complete until we’ve touched on user menus. In the case of the CP745ES, there are five menus to choose from which include Picture, Audio, Setting, Advanced, and Presentation, all of which contain a nice blend of useful options.

Boxlight CP745ES Multipurpose LCD Projector Picture Menu Display Boxlight CP745ES Multipurpose LCD Projector Presentation Menu Display

Highlights in the Picture menu include adjustments that can be made on a 0 to 100 scale for standard settings like Brightness, Contrast, and Sharpness, and when in Video Mode (using an S-Video or Composite connection), you have further options that include Color and Tint. Additionally, there are six preset Display modes that include Powerful, Video, Presentation, Natural, Cinema, and User. When in User mode, you then have further access to adjusting User Red, User Green, and User Blue, also on a 0 to 100 scale. The Audio menu is brief and simple, offering a mute option as well as volume control on a 0 to 40 scale. The Setting menu is also relatively straightforward, offering two very nice and practical features in the form of Auto Keystone and Auto Search. Auto Keystone allows you to correct image distortion with the simple touch of a button, while Auto Search automatically detects your signal source for you. The fourth menu is Advanced, and the main feature here would be the resize option which lets you select from two image sizes: 4:3 and 16:9. There’s also a language option which lets you adjust your menus from over nine different languages, along with a still feature which lets you freeze the image up on screen, and one that lets you digitally pan or zoom your on-screen image. Last but not least comes the Presentation menu which allows you to select your projection method, view your lamp hours, and as mentioned earlier, you can select from two lamp modes which include normal and economic. The first mode ups the ANSI lumen output to a max of 2600 (pending other image options that are used) and offers lamp life of about 2000 hours, while the energy-conscious economic lamp mode gives you about 3000 hours worth of lamp life and a max output of 2100 ANSI lumens (also pending other image options you use). Another great feature to be found here which we also touched on earlier is Auto Brightness which automatically detects ambient light and brightness, and then simultaneously adjusts your projector’s lumen light output accordingly, not only maximizing presentation performance, but also extending lamp life.

Another really great and useful feature that you get with the CP745ES LCD projector is something called Unplug & Go which Boxlight offers on many different projector models. The way this works is as the name itself suggests: once you’re done with the projector, just unplug it and go, without having to wait around for the projector to cool down. 

Out-Of-Box Picture

I initially put the CP745ES through its paces, using only out-of-box settings, as well as various PC-based applications like Photoshop, Word, and PowerPoint. While it’s quite easy to expect a less-than ideal image out of the box, as I’ve come to discover (and expect) from Boxlight, that’s not always the case. With the CP745ES, it did a terrific job handling the various types of fonts and font sizes, rendering most everything in clear and sharp detail. With respect to images and graphics, it also displayed a real nice color gamut, with everything coming off clean and vivid.

I then made the following adjustments:

Brightness 45
Contrast 53
Sharpness 1 (default)
Display Mode Presentation (default)

Additionally, I also adjusted the lamp mode from normal to economic. The above adjustments results were more apparent with respect to the quality of the images, as many of the pictures offered a little more in the way of detail and improved contrast.

Although the primary purpose of the Boxlight CP745ES is for business and/or academic presentations, I also decided to try it with video to see how it would perform in the home theater arena. I used it with a Pioneer DV-400V DVD player via an S-Video connection, and Death to Smoochy as the subject matter. Much like the CP755EW from Boxlight, the CP745ES performed admirably out of the box. While the quality would never be confused with the HD experience considering the limitations of using an S-Video connection (obviously), for those who do (still) enjoy the DVD experience, this is certainly as good as some of the better ones. Color gamut was above-average, color saturation was okay, and contrast detail was pretty good, although in the exceptionally bright or dark scenes, image detail did drop off a bit.

I then settled on the following:

Brightness 45
Contrast 57
Sharpness 1 (default)
Color 60
Tint 50 (default)
Display Mode Presentation (default)

I also set the lamp mode to normal. With said changes, overall image quality looked to be more well rounded: color saturation was modestly improved, as was the contrast, with various images displaying a bit more in the way of details, creating a richer, warmer image. Again, as per the technical scope and central purpose of the CP745ES, it more than held its own in the video arena. For those of you looking to augment your presentations or viewing habits with some video from time to time, you can rest assured and feel confident in the fact that it will do the job, minus all the glorious eye candy and intricately-rendered image details you’d get with HD video.


Like its big brother, the CP755EW, calibration of the CP745ES was a breeze, and if all projectors were as straightforward as these when it came time to calibrate, I’d be a much happier person. Image settings were essentially on par with those made just by eye, and white balance adjustments in the mid-IRE ranges were able to clock into an ideal color temperature of 6572K, where a slight blue push had to be dialed back slightly, and the red needed to go the opposite way.

In terms of yay or nay to calibrating the CP745ES, if pressed for answer, I’d probably lean towards the nay side-of-things, being that the standard user menus offer more then enough in the way of options to tweak your image just right. While calibration of the CP745ES LCD projector did net some very modest improvements in the areas of color saturation and contrast, PC-based apps looked essentially the same, and since that is the main reason why you’d purchase a projector like this, calibrating the CP745ES would be more of a luxury as opposed to a need.

FINAL THOUGHTS – Boxlight LCD Projector

Here’s the quick and dirty, nitty gritty that you need to know: for the stationery or on-the-go person, the CP745ES is the absolute perfect choice for those academic or business presentations that demand quality performance, with a price-point that won’t break the bank. With LCD-based image sharpness and clarity, short-throw capabilities, a max output of 26000 ANSI lumens that’s ideal for various settings, a street price of about $1,300.00, and performance-enhancing features that include Auto Brightness and 3-D comb filtering, it’s virtually impossible to go wrong with the CP745ES.

Boxlight CP745ES Portable Multipurpose LCD Projector Top Shot



180 watt NHS

Lamp Life

2000 hours (standard) 3000 hours (eco)


16.7 Million True Color

Aspect Ratio

Video 4:3 Compatible 16:9

Contrast Ratio


Display Type


H-Sync Range

Horizontal—15-69 kHz

V-Sync Range

Vertical—43-85 kHz


Computer x2 /YPbPrx1, Composite Video, Mini Jack Audio,


RGB computer out Mini jack audio, RS232, USB


1 x 2w Mono Speaker

Audible Noise

33dB (standard) / 30dB (eco)


(WxDxH) 12.1 x 10.5 x 3.7 inches / 30.7 x 26.7 x 9.4 cm

Image Height


Screen Color


Image Width



6.4 lbs. (2.9 kgs.)

Projector Lens

Manual zoom/focus

Diag Image Size

40 to 300 inches

Keystone Adj.

(+/- 30º) Vertical


Remote & on projector

Power Supply

AC 100-240V at 50-60Hz Auto changing

Power Consumption

250 Watts Avg

HDTV/EDTV Compatibility

480i/p, 576i/p, 720p, 1080i

Video Compatibility


Workstation Compatibility


Viewing Angle


Throw Distance



2100 (Economy) / 2600 (Normal) ANSI Lumens

Verdict recommendations are ranked from best to worst as follows:

Highly Recommended                      
Moderate Recommendation            
Take A Pass
Avoid Like The Plague  

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