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BenQ MP780 ST Short Throw WXGA Interactive DLP Projector Review

Posted on April 19, 2011 by Art Feierman

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BenQ MP780 ST Specs
Price 2099
Technology DLP
Native Resolution 1280x800
Brightness (Manufacturer Claim) 2500
Contrast 3,000:1
Zoom Lens Ratio Fixed
Lens Shift No
Lamp Life Up to 3000 hours (Normal mode), 4000 hours (Eco mode)
Weight 8.38 lbs
Warranty Three years Parts and Labor on projector, One year or 2000 hours on lamp

BenQ MP780 ST Projector Overview

The BenQ MP780 ST is a short throw WXGA (1280x800) DLP projector that is aimed directly at the teacher or presenter desiring an interactive presentation experience.  With its innovative interactive pen and accompanying software, combined with two built-in 10W (each) speakers and microphone input, the MP780 ST is comfortable in any classroom or conference room. The MP780 is able to project a 95” diagonal image from only 3.3 feet (front of projector to screen), which easily places the MP780 ST into the “short throw” category.   The MP780 ST uses the same fixed lens setup as the recently reviewed BenQ MP772 ST, consisting of a fixed normal lens projecting through a second, convex lens.  As is the case with fixed lens, short throw projectors, the MP780 ST has no zooming ability outside of  digital zooming.  This requires the user to spend a little more time setting up the projector at the correct distance for the screen size desired, as well as at the proper height.

The MP780 ST's interactive pen can be used as a wireless mouse simply by pointing it at the screen from a short distance away.  When used with BenQ's QDraw software, it also allows for drawing lines and shapes on a variety of presentation types.  With the projector so close to the screen, the presenter will not interfere with the projected image, nor will he or she have to look back toward the lens of the projector.  The MP780 is also 3-D ready, incorporating Texas Instruments' DLP link technology.  The BenQ MP780 ST has a specified output of 2500 lumens with a 3000:1 contrast ratio.  Both are very good ratings, especially the contrast ratio.  The MP780 ST is also quite portable, at only 8.38 pounds, giving it the flexibility to be easily moved from one location to another.

For those requiring flexibility in installation, BenQ offers the MX750, which differs from the MP780 ST in that it has a 1.6X zoom lens instead of being a short throw, is XGA (1024x768) resolution and does not have the interactive pen feature.

BenQ MP780 ST Projector Highlights

  • Lightweight – 8.38 lbs.
  • Good Brightness and Contrast – 2500 lumens and 3000:1 contrast ratio
  • PC-Free presentation capability from a USB drive
  • PointDrawTM pen allows for interactive presentations with any projection surface
  • 3-D Ready – Incorporates DLP Link technology
  • Full (RGBCMY) color management in User modes
  • Network monitoring, control and presentation
  • Two built-in 10W/each speakers
  • Closed captioning

BenQ MP780 ST Special Features

PointDrawTM Interactive Pen - This pen allows for interactive capabilities with any projection surface.  It is compatible with any computer operating system that supports a standard USB mouse.  No calibration is required between the projector and the projection screen.  You just connect the projector to your computer, activate the PointDraw function on the projector and you're ready to go.

QDrawTM Interactive Software (see right) - When used with the PointDraw pen, the QDraw software allows the teacher or their student to draw lines and shapes to heighten the interactive experience.

QPresenter Software - When installed on the host PC, the QPresenter software allows the presenter to control a remotely located PC by plugging a USB mouse or keyboard into the projector.

3D Ready – ready for use with new 3D content. Incorporating DLP Link technology, when used with compatible 3D field sequential content and active shutter 3D glasses (not included) that support the DLP Link system.  While not currently much of a feature due to lack of content, it is expected that 3D instruction will eventually be very popular in education.

Full Color Management - for individual adjustment of each of the projector’s primary (red, green and blue) and secondary (cyan, magenta and yellow) colors.  This allows the user to adjust the saturation, hue and brightness of each color to their tastes.

Crestron RoomView Network Service – The MP780 ST supports Crestron’s RoomView management system.  This allows for centralized access and control over a single projector or multiple projectors simultaneously, as well as notifications which can be distributed to each projector.

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