In a well-timed release just ahead of Star Wars celebration day known as May the Fourth, Anker is offering a special R2-D2 edition of its popular Nebula Capsule II project and speaker — and we’ve been using it for a few weeks.
A handy projector or speaker
First and foremost, the Capsule II is a projector that can also double as a Bluetooth speaker. It has a built-in battery so that you can easily take it with you on the go. Watch a movie in the yard, drop a sheet on a pontoon boat for a movie on the lake, or listen to music with it in the water bottle holder on your bike. There are a ton of options with this device.
It measures just around six inches tall, a bit shorter than our iPhone 12 Pro Max.
There’s a projector lens and autofocus sensor on the front. A USB-C charging port, a USB-A port, an HDMI input, and an auxiliary audio output are located on the bottom of the back. The back also has the power button just below the mode switching button and the IR receiver.
A remote is also included for each control of the projector. The entire device runs Android TV, so it has a large variety of apps and streaming services to choose from, with only a few notable exceptions.
It’s capable of outputting a 720p 200-ANSI-lumen image up to 100 inches in size.
By holding the mode button, it will switch from projector to speaker. It can be paired like any other Bluetooth speaker and just be used to blast your music.
Star Wars-themed touches
There are two ways that Nebula separates the R2-D2 version of its Capsule II from the standard version. It has an apparent R2D2 design on the exterior, and the easily recognizable beeps of R2-D2 replaced its startup chime.
The top of the Capsule II is blue, while the bottom is a light grey. The metal mesh that wraps around the device has been painted to mimic the famous droid’s own paint job.
Otherwise, it is identical to Capsule II in both form and function.
Testing it out
We’ve used the Capsule II projector before, and the R2-D2 model doesn’t operate any differently. It’s pretty popular for a reason. It is very compact, easy to use, and puts out a very solid image. We’ve watched movies outside on a sheet that we dropped from our deck, as well as fell asleep watching vintage TV game shows projected on our living room wall.
The brightness, though, isn’t super high, so it does work best in low-light environments. You certainly can’t kick back during broad daylight and expect to watch anything with this.
It’s become our go-to projector due to its portability and versatility.
That said, we do have our issues with it. While using it with our Apple TV, we aren’t able to control the volume from our Siri Remote. The included remote also doesn’t seem to work correctly for us. The input selector mutes the volume, and the volume controls don’t do anything at all. It’s positively frustrating to have to manually change the volume using the touch-sensitive buttons on top. Not to mention going through settings to switch inputs when necessary.
Netflix also doesn’t certify products below a certain threshold, so Netflix isn’t one of the 5000+ apps available natively. What you have to do is down the Nebula Manager app, which has a mobile version of the app file that you’re able to launch and run. It is a mobile version of Netflix, which doesn’t play well with the remote. Instead, you should use cursor mode in the Nebula remote mobile app.
These are seriously annoying issues, but they are also typical for projectors. We get around it using our Apple TV or Playstation 5 when inside and using the native apps, Chromecast, or the mobile version of Netflix when we are going wire-free.
Low hanging fruit
We absolutely adored this speaker. It looks terrific and is a perfect accessory for any true Star Wars fan. Ever since the original Capsule II launched, people chimed in online about how similar the body was to R2-D2. It is incredible how Nebula was able to work with Disney on bringing this to market.
It was low-hanging fruit, though. We want just a little more Star Wars injected into the product. It would be very cool if the included remote was themed as well — some color and design to look like a droid part or something similar.