Projector Reviews

BenQ HT3050 Projector Review – Performance

BENQ HT3050 PROJECTOR – PERFORMANCE:  Measured Brightness, Out of the box Color Temp, Lens Positioning, Brilliant Color

HT3050 Brightness Measurements

HT4050 Brightness by Color Mode: Default settings, lens at mid-zoom
Mode Lumens
Bright 2291
Vivid 2051 (BC On)
REC 709 1538 (BC Off) 2051 (BC On)
Game 1970
User 1, 2 2051

Relating to the first table.  Bright mode, is easily the brightest, but as with almost all projectors, leaves a good bit to be desired in terms of color accuracy, with a yellow green emphasis.

REC 709 and Vivid seem to be basically the same mode with the difference being that REC 709 has Brilliant Color (BC) off, so it’s not as bright, while Vivid, along with User 1 and 2, are the same 2051 (+/-) with BC on.

Game – is slightly on the cool side (a touch more blue, less red) but its not quite as bright as Vivid.  Whether there’s something about it that makes it more desirable for gaming, I don’t know.

The REC 709 mode is a little on the warm side.  While we didn’t do a full calibration including calibrating each of the primary and secondary colors, Mike did do the grayscale.  It very nicely cooled down, as you can see in the table.

Color Temps of Different Modes

Color Temp by Mode, “right out of the box” with no adjustments (100 IRE)
Mode Color Temp
Bright 7373K
Vivid 6171K
Game 6929K
REC 709, User 1,2 6104K, 6163K, 6180K

Affect of Zoom Lens on Brightness

HT3050 Lens Position vs Brightness in Lumens (Bright Mode)
Wide Angle (closest) 2410
Mid Zoom 2191
Telephoto (furthest) 2183

There’s about a 10% drop off in brightness from full wide angle on the zoom – (which places the projector as close as is possible to your screen), and the mid-point setting on the zoom.  Overall, from full wide angle to full telephoto, the drop is just over 20%, so that positioning won’t have a huge difference on brightness.  Full telephoto is almost identical to mid-zoom in brightness a smidgeon lower, but well within our measuring accuracy.  Still, if your room is challenging in terms of ambient light, closer positioning is a bit better.

HT3050 Eco Mode, Brilliant Color's Affect on Brightness

First there’s Eco mode.  This is easy.  Switch to Eco mode, and you get a drop off of about 39% in brightness.  That’s interesting because the HT4050 only drops off by about 31%.  SmartEco mode, when projecting a full white image, is the same as Full power.  There’s also the usual slight shift in color temp.  (our measurements, and calibration are with the lamp at full power).

Brilliant Color Affects the picture via a number of methods giving a punchier look to things, but, in terms of it’s affect on brightness, that varies a lot from one model of projector to another.

With the HT3050, engaging Brilliant Color increases brightness by approximately 27%.  That explains almost all of the difference between the brightness of the REC 709 mode and Vivid.

HT3050 Post Grayscale Calibration Color Accuracy, Brightness

HT3050 Post Calibration Grayscale Balance (by IRE)
IRE Color Temp
100 (white) 6216
90 6530
80 6506
70 6542
60 6603
50 6594
40 6598
30 6460
20 (very dark gray) 6614

Once the grayscale color balance was adjusted the HT3050 measured 1586 lumens with white measuring 6343K , actually increased brightness by a small amount: 48 lumens – roughly 3%.

Except for full on white, the rest of the brightness range is a tight 154K.  White is still a little warm, but overall:  Nice color!