Based on a series of 1×2 beam splitters, novel direct excitation of slow-light from input- to output-region in photonic crystal waveguides is investigated theoretically and experimentally. The study shows that the slow-light excitation provides over 50 nm bandwidth for TE-polarized light splitting between two output ports, and co-exists together with self-imaging leading to ~20 nm extra bandwidth. The intensity of the direct excitation is qualitatively explained by the overlap integral of the magnetic fields between the ground input- and excited output-modes. The direct excitation of slow light is practically lossless compared with transmission in a W1 photonic crystal waveguides, which broadens the application-field for slowlight and further minimizes the size of a 1×2 splitter. © 2011 Optical Society of America.