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BenQ W7500 Home Theater Projector Review - Special Features

Posted on March 18, 2014 by Art Feierman
W7500 PROJECTOR SPECIAL FEATURES:  CFI, 3D, 3D Glasses, Detail Enhancement

Creative Frame Interpolation

The BenQ W7500 projector offers Creative Frame Interpolation (not just basic frame interpolation).   It's becoming more common for manufacturers to lump "creative" in with basic frame interpolation, but there are big differences.

As many of you know, with "creative" frame interpolation, this W7500 projector and others look ahead at upcoming frames, and create a frame in-between them, which moves objects to position them where they would be if the image stream was at a faster frame per second rate.

The BenQ provided image from their website shows the car being created in the new frame, half way between where it's positioned on the two original frames.

BenQ's CFI is reasonably smooth.  The high setting is pure hard core - soap opera effect, although it's not bad for sports.  medium is more moderate, and low is downright modest.  I still rarely will use CFI with 24fps movies, but the low setting here, isn't bad, for those that like CFI for movies, or just don't care one way or another.

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3D Capabilities

3D    First things first.   Properly designed single chip DLP projectors do not exhibit crosstalk, an advantage they have over LCD and LCoS designs.  Crosstalk, like other types of artifacts and noise bother some folks more than others.  Myself, I’m “OK” with crosstalk on projectors like the Epsons and the Sonys, but that doesn’t mean I don’t notice it from time to time.  I occasionally read a comment from someone, though who just can’t stand watching 3D when there’s crosstalk present.   As is the case with those who can’t stand to watch DLP projectors (even ones with fast color wheels), they seem to be the small minority.

My own take is this:  I truly enjoy watching 3D, but that’s in part because I find the immersion effect (something folks with small LCDTV’s like 65 inch diagonal just can't have) to be the big payback.  I can easily tolerate the less than great color, perhaps some crosstalk, sometimes a bit less brightness than I prefer, and even the occasional “over the top” 3D effect.  That last, either because directors can’t resist the desire, or, perhaps because the content (movie) targets kids as well as adults.  The  “wow, wasn’t that cool” as the bird flys between the screen and your nose, is fun once in a while, but that stuff usually detracts from the overall content.

This BenQ W7500 is an extremely bright projector capable of about 1800 lumens with a first class looking image, and over 2200 at max (color not near as good).  What that translates to, is the ability to fill a respectably large screen and still have reasonable brightness in 3D.   Like the Epson competition, the W7500 has acceptable brightness on my 124” diagonal screen, and might almost be considered bright in 3D on a typical 100” diagonal screen of say 1.3 gain.)

The BenQ W7500 projector, like many 3D capable projectors offers 2D to 3D conversion.  I'm not a fan, myself, at least for converting movies.  I have fiddled with it on football games (interesting), I've yet to find 2D-3D conversion that doesn't occasionally show some obvious artifacts.

Bottom Line, 3D (from 3D content) looks great.

W7500 Projector - 3D Glasses

Finally!   .  BenQ until not that long ago was serving up  some big, heavy, ugly 3D glasses.   Old style glasses for DLP projectors were typically just like that.  But they are lighter today, some are a lot lighter.  The W7500's glasses are medium weight, coming in at about 46 grams or about 1 and 2/3rds ounces.  The lightest 3D glasses I have here, some Samsungs that are compatible with Sony and Epson projectors, are 23 grams.  Epson's are 34 and Sony's 37 grams respectively, for comparison.  The BenQ glasses are rechargeable, using the usual USB type cable.

The BenQ still uses DLP-link.  In projectors where both have been available (Mitsubishi HC80000D for one), the RF easily outperformed the DLP-Link.  All-in-all, the glasses are not a strength, however several readers have commented about Optoma glasses that work, that don't leak the red in the blacks the way the BenQ's do.  My recommendation is that you might want to shop for different 3D glasses, especially since none are included with the projector.  Those others will still be DLP link, but sound like a better solution.

I vote that BenQ switches to RF in the next generation.

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Detail Enhancement

Found in the Clarity Control sub-menu is Detail Enhancement. Without comparing levels of smart and sophistication, let's just say that many/most projectors over $2000 these days have some sort of detail enhancement. The names can get fancy:  JVC = 4K eshift3, Sony = Reality Creation, Epson = Super-Resolution, and so on.  Each manufacturer's has different degrees of sophistication, but the overall goals are the same.   One thing I've suggested in the past, is that while "not quite the same thing" Epson's Super-Resolution (3LCD projector) tends to make it appear as inherently sharp as a good single chip DLP - such as this W7500.

When I was shooting side by sides between the two, I left the BenQ on its default of 1 (out of 3, or off), and the Epson at 2, which is the way I usually use it.   I will say, that when comparing, the BenQ still looks a touch sharper than the Epson.   When I turn the Epson to 3, its about a tie, and if 2 on the Epson, and 0 on the BenQ, also about a tie.  But, on close inspection we're not really talking true sharpness, but perceived…  Contrast boosts and other things also accomplish the same.  The trick is to apparently have a sharper seeming, more detailed seeming image, without visible artifacts to distract.  The BenQ on 1, Epson on 2, fit that bill.

So, my point is, that the BenQ still has a slight perceived advantage, when both roll out their fancy feature.

On the image here, of Bond - Daniel Craig - from Casino Royale, the BenQ W7500 is on the left, Detail Enhancement set to 1.  Epson 5030UB on the right, Super-Resolution set to 2.  You be the judge!

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