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BenQ W7500 Projector Review - Picture Quality 2

Posted on March 18, 2014 by Art Feierman
BENQ W7500 PICTURE QUALITY PAGE 2:   Sports and HDTV Viewing, Dark Shadow Detail The BenQ W7500 is a virtual light canon, with over 1700 calibrated lumens. That combination means not only nice bright sports and TV viewing, but with great color.   Some of the competition, most notably the Epson and Panasonic, calibrated, are in the 600 lumen range, but can break 2000 lumens with less than exceptional color.   Ultimately, those others are a touch brighter at brightest, but at around the same 1700 or so lumens, the BenQ will have a slight advantage in color accuracy.  Probably not enough that the average sports fan would care at all, but if your thing are programs where really accurate color might be desirable (Red carpet shows for the Oscars, etc., Fashion Police, or a Discovery HD show about the works of Matisse, then the BenQ's calibrated color gives it an advantage. Let's compare to some other competitors that are a bit more money:  The Sony calibrates around 1000 lumens, and produces an extremely good, but not calibrated image at a maximum of less than 1400 lumens.   JVC's DLA-X35 also prices for about $1000 more, it barely musters over 1000 lumens in brightest mode, so no match if you want some ambient light present! Let's look at some sports and general HDTV images. Keep in mind that even if you expand the image player, the images are then only 1000 pixels across, barely 1/4th the full resolution of 1920x1080 HDTV.  In other words, everything's a lot sharper up on the screen, than what you are viewing here! -art

HDTV: Sports and General Programming Images

I've already watched a good deal of sports, as well as movies on the W7500.  Count in that catching up on some of the Olympics I recorded but hadn't yet watched, add to that some March Madness, and all the football I get to see when doing my sports photo shoot.

As always I've watched a lot of music of of HDTV, Jouls, favorite music festivals, other concerts, plus a variety of general programming, from CNBC to Blacklist, plus some HGTV, Discovery HD, and more.

The sharpness of the W7500 makes me wish that HDTV was 1080p not 1080i.  There's lots of horsepower pushing out a picture with lots of pop.   Quite honestly, sports, and general HDTV looks great on the W7500.  Black level performance is less critical, especially on sports, where the content is normally anywhere from very bright to average in brightness.

Detail enhancement set for 1 is nice, on 2 it seems to up the contrast slightly, etc.  I remained quite happy with 1, except, of course the last projector I reviewed was a true 4K projector.  Following the Sony VPL-VW600ES is a tough act for any 1080p projector - at any price.

If Mike can slightly improve the color, then I'd have to save Sports and HDTV are truly excellent, and probably at least as good as any of the competition.  While the Epsons in particular, and some less expensive projectors can muster up more lumens, in no case are we talking about dramatic differences in brightness.   Let's face it, an extremely bright single chip DLP projector with good optics, really fits the bill for sports and other all digital content.  And as to my comment about the color, we're quibbling here.   I think you'll agree just from looking at these images.

W7500 Projector: Dark Shadow Detail

All of these images are dramatically overexposed so the camera can capture the details nearest to black.  (Most were time exposures in the 5 to 30 second range, with the camera f-stop wide open.)

All of these are good performers, with those with the least good black level performance being the easiest to spot the dark detail.  Most of the differences are not the projectors' abilities, as the variation between them is probably a "subset" of chaining the brightness setting by one.

Look around the darkest area of the woods, an almost round area near the bottom, just left of center.

Perhaps more revealing is the Casino Royale train scene on the previous page.  On that image, look to the shrubs behind the tracks, and in the darkest part of the woods (above and to the left).

Bottom line on the BenQ W7500's dark shadow detail handling, is:  Extremely good, no complaints!


Dark Shadow Detail Comparison

W7500: Heavily overexposed scene from The Hunger Games - excellent
Lower Cost BenQ W1500 (no iris) great dark detail - worse blacks
Epson 6030ub/5030ub - image too dark, but is excellent
Sony VPL-HW55ES - comparable to W7500
Epson Pro Cinema 4030 - perhaps the best of this group
Epson G6900 - A pure media room projector with 6000 lumens (too dark image)
No Fair! Sony 4K VW600ES - but darker

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