BenQ W1070 Projector - Performance
We discuss the BenQ W1070 projector's brightness in various modes of 2D, and provide our subjective assessment of its 3D brightness. You will find images showing the differences in brightness (and color) between the 2D modes. Further down we get into the W1070's sharpness, image noise, audible noise, etc.
1/6/13 - Art Feierman
BenQ W1070 Brightness
The W1070 is very bright. I mean really bright, especially when comparing to other projectors post calibration. That shouldn't be too shocking, this is primarily a "family room" projector. It's not the brightest around, as there are plenty of home entertainment projectors around it's price. Still there are only a couple of projectors that can muster up more than a few hundred extra lumens. Even when you consider other light canons like the Panassonic PT-AR100U ($1199), and the Epson Home Cinema 3020 ($1599), which are brighter, that's primarily in "brightest mode".
3D brightness is discussed in the 3D section below. If anything, that's where you really need lots of brightness.
Lumen Output and Color Temp at 100 IRE (mid zoom):
Dynamic= 1786 @ 7754
Standard= 1730 @ 6912
Cinema= 1711 @ 6913, 1109 @ 7359 with Eco lamp, 1335 @ 6566 with Normal lamp and Brilliant Color off.
User 1= 1730 @ 6897
User 2= 1730 @ 6904
NOTE: Standard, User 1,2,3 are identical. Cinema is very close to them as well.
Those numbers are all "right out of the box", without any adjustments, to settings like contrast, which can affect overall brightness.
BenQ W1070 Calibrated: User 1 "best" mode = 1711 lumens
That is rather exceptional brightness. Keep in mind Brilliant Color is engaged, so technically, you can have a better picture with BC off, but with essentially the same color balance.
BenQ W1070 Modes: Image Comparison
This is one of the sets of images I shot with the projector slightly out of focus - my apologies.
User 1 (Calibrated):
User 2 and User 3: (same as an uncalibrated User 1 mode)
Effect of zoom on lumen output (Dynamic mode):
Zoom out: 1843
Zoom in: 1629
Not a lot of zoom range, but it is 1.3:1, which is a bit more range than the 1.2:1 zooms that are so popular on low cost DLP projectors. Thus, we wouldn't expect a big drop, and voila' the drop from closest position (wide angle) to furthest placement from the screen (telephoto on the lens). All told that is a drop of less than 15%. To put that in perspective, switching from full power to eco (see below) is a much greater drop in brightness.
W1070 Lamp Brightness Smart-Eco vs. Full Power
Lumen Output (Eco Lamp, Dynamic): 1166
That's a drop of almost exactly 35% Although measured Dynamic mode for the comparison, understand that you should get that same amount of difference no matter which mode you are in.
Check it out. First is Normal (full power) then Smart Eco, then Economic:
Above: Is is possible that Smart Eco is actually a touch brighter than Normal on this bright scene?
BenQ W1070 Pre-Calibration Color temp
Color Temp over IRE Range (Pre calibration, best modes - Cinema-Standard-User):
|30 IRE –||6809|
|50 IRE –||6840|
|80 IRE –||6807|
|100 IRE –||6905|
The W1070, as you can see from the numbers above, defaults to a slightly cool image - but barely so. The nice thing is that most should prefer a projector that's a little cool, than a little warm (too much red). That the temperatures are very consistant predicts a great calibration.
W1070, Post Calibration, Best Mode (User 1)
Calibrated Color Temp over IRE Range:
20 IRE = 6427
30 IRE = 6427
40 IRE = 6496
50 IRE = 6449
60 IRE = 6477
70 IRE = 6419
80 IRE = 6452
90 IRE = 6469
100 IRE = 6499
Average gamma= 2.16
Ridiculous. No $1000 projector should be able to calibrate this tightly. Note that the color temperature varies only by 80 degrees. Most projectors calibrated vary by 200 to 400 degrees. Even $10,000 projectors. Sweet! The result is excellent color.
BenQ W1070 3D Brightness
1700 calibrated lumens at mid-point on the zoom lens, is going to make this one of the brightest 1080p 3D capable home theater projectors on the market. Oh, the Epson 3020 and 5020UB can muster up an extra 400 lumens, but that's uncalibrated. By comparison those guys are under 700 lumens calibrated!
Still, 3LCD projectors often are brighter doing 3D than similarly measured DLP projectors. Note that LCD and LCoS projectors usually have "glasses" controls (in the projector not the glasses) that can allow them to be brighter (but with it more crosstalk).
None of that really matters. What does, is that I can watch a 124" diagonal image without ambient light (night time in most family / bonus rooms), and have it look reasonable.
We've come a long way in two years, when I really dissed a JVC projector for it's really dim 3D - back then, 3D projectors were less efficient. That is, with the same lumens measured, today's projectors appear brighter when viewed. Well that JVC couldn't quite do 700 lumens! This projector is 2.5 times as bright as that $12K home theater projector, and it certainly is at least that much better in brightness!
Perhaps the first 1080p, affordable 3D projector was the Optoma HD33, at about $500 more. This projector does better 3D and much brighter too. And that Optoma's less than 2 years old (and still current).
Enough - I like the 3D - let's move on!
BenQ W1070 Sharpness
I expect single chip DLP projectors like this BenQ to inherently look sharp (at least compared to 3LCD and LCoS projectors) due to being the only technology that isn't 3 panels that have to be converged.
After that, it's up to the optics for the rest of how good the sharpness is.
All considered, the BenQ W1070 very nicely sharp, with no more center to edge shift in sharpness than we would expect in a low cost projector, in fact it's better than most.
But, there is one minor issue, and that, as mentioned elsewhere. The lens controls - the focus ring is very stiff, at least on this unit. It can take a minute to focus, as it sticks and then jumps a little. Hard to get it exactly right. But, this is minor nuisance only, as with a little effort, you can get it dead on. The fact that some of the HDTV images in this review are a bit out of focus is my error. I moved the projector (closer to the screen by several inches) after initially setting up, got distracted, and simply forgot to refocus. In the back of the room, controlling the camera, I just didn't notice, I was too busy taking pictures and selecting scenes.
I don't believe anyone will have any issues regarding the sharpness. I also will mention that I didn't notice any defocusing as the projector warms up
Top left: BenQ W1070, Top Center - Optoma HD33, Top Right - Mitsubishi HC4000.
2nd row left: Epson Home Cinema 3020, center: Viewsonic Pro8200, Right: Acer H9500BD
BenQ W1070: Bottom Line Sharpness
Whoa! You probably won't care in a "family room" environment, but the front exhaust leaks a fair amount of light. The grates are large, but that's no excuse. Again, though, this is not a projector targeted for a dedicated home theater.
In a typical environment this should not be an issue, but, for the sake of further clarification, the bulk of the light exits upward and to the left from the exhaust when the projector is table top. Therefore down to the right if ceiling mounted.
A little bit cleaner in terms of background misquito noise than most other lower cost DLPs. There's always noise, it's just that the W1070 seems to have a touch less. We normally do not play with the noise reduction controls, so this is based on default settings. Panning is pretty good on 24fps movies. At a certain speed of horizontal panning, the image tends to jitter. Some projectors worse than others. Put the BenQ down as "pretty good", I've seen worse on a few $5000 projectors.
Never expect a very small, very bright projector to be very quiet, and you won't be disappointed. Home entainment projectors like this W1070 are rarely particularly quiet, especially DLP projectors, as they use a brighter bulb to produce the same brightness as a typical 3LCD projector.
It's certainly not quiet at full power, but it's also NOT a screamer. I'd say typical for the class of projector, especially those with 3D like thi sone. The BenQ W1070 projector, is also typically pretty quiet in it's eco mode.