Projector Reviews

Projector Overall Picture Quality

W5000 Brilliant Color Performance and Issues





BenQ W5000 - Overall Picture Quality

When it comes to kicking back and enjoying the content, the BenQ, all considered, does an excellent job. My biggest complaint being image noise. Beyond that, it is a top performer in just about every area. Here are a few more images for your consideration:

Viewing - HDTV

Coming in a couple of days!

Let’s just say, for now, that it did extremely well for sports viewing, with or without Brilliant Color on. With it on, again, it could get a little over the top, but plenty of punch to make up for that, when you need it.

Picture Quality - Bottom Line:

Click to enlarge.  So close.I’m getting rather repetitive. This BenQ always impresses overall. Good color accuracy, very good black levels, great shadow detail, and a really sharp image, provide a great overall viewing experience. Only the image noise stands out as an issue, and while some say that adds a “film-like” quality, let’s just say, “it could be better in that regard”.

Click Image to Enlarge

Like the Epson and Sony VW40, this projector is one, that while overall does not quite match my RS1, is one I could certainly live with, if I had to give up the RS1, and had a $3K budget. Now, if only BenQ will add additional settings for Brilliant Color, so it can be reduced a bit on the content where their implementation is a little over the top.

One thing I don’t normally mention is the issue of motion blurring. I see in the forums there are definite conversations about motion blurring on 3LCD and LCoS projectors. The DLP chip reacts much faster than the other two technologies, and is considered completely free of motion blurring. Myself, I just don’t notice motion blurring when watching movies, etc. It is a much more subtle issue in my opinion, than the 3:2 pulldown effect which creates a slight stuttering – called judder – in the image when panning or action is present. Fortunately, the W5000 like most new 1080p projectors supports 1080p/24fps, which eliminates the need for 3:2 pull-down, and thus, eliminates the judder. I think this allows motion blurring to show up on some people’s radar. I’m not saying it doesn’t exist, but I don’t see it as an issue for most. For those that do see motion blurring in 3LCD and LCoS projectors, that makes the BenQ W5000 an even better projector, by comparison. As a big proponent of DLP projectors who emailed me at length about motion blurring pointed out, once he shows people what he’s talking about, they can see it. I’m more of the school that says, if you don’t see a minor issue, then focus more on the issues that are major (such as black levels, shadow detail, brightness and color accuracy). It’s just one more reason why there is no “perfect” projector.

For the best picture quality, Brilliant Color must be turned off. Unlike some other DLP projectors with Brilliant Color from TI, the W5000 offers only one setting. That setting increases overall brightness significantly, and not evenly. It also seems to affect saturation, and other aspects of the image. The point is, sometimes it is over the top, where the picture quality suffers enough to be noticeable to most. Also some detail is lost. Here are several sets of images with Brilliant Color Off, then the same image (adjusting the camera, as best I can to get the same overall brightness), with Brilliant Color On.

Projector Overall Picture Quality

Projector Overall Picture Quality

In this case, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. While most of the descriptors I use to describe black levels, sharpness, and shadow detail are “good” or “very good” but never “excellent”, when I consider the overall picture quality, “great” or “excellent” really best describes the HD65. As I mentioned at the start of this review, American Idol, on HDTV was stunning.

Movies were equally impressive. Any lack in specific areas were more than made up for with the HD65’s great skin tones, and rich deep colors that provide a lot of depth to the image. While a further improvement in black levels would be a significant benefit, all considered, the picture is consistently most impressive!

This is, therefore, a very well balanced projector. There are no really important weaknesses to damage the overall picture quality. The HD65 may not have the most perfect picture quality around, but it would only come up short by direct comparison. I am thoroughly convinced that virtually all owners will be extremely pleased, and, impressed!

Now there are almost an infinite number of image settings on most projectors, when you think about it. In addition to individual RGB (and sometimes CYM) controls with as many as 50+ steps each, there are the brightness, contrast, color saturation controls, etc. In other worlds “billions and billions” of combinations.

To further complicate things, many DLP projectors now feature TI’s Brilliant Color circuitry, which may provide up to 10 additional settings options, which affect a number of parameters. Further, this Optoma offers what they call Tru-Vivid, which seems to be, first, a color saturation control (there is no “color (saturation)” control on the HD65), but this one does affect such changes. There are 4 Tru-Vivid settings.

Just to give you an ideal of what these controls do, I’ve got two images of each, selecting different settings that are already used as default settings in some of the modes.

Projector Overall Picture Quality Slideshow

Picture Quality - Bottom Line

Overall, after proper adjustment, the HD65 is a 720p home theater projector, that when it comes to technical performance, doesn’t seem to be exceptional at anything, but is so well balanced, that most buyers should be thoroughly pleased with it.

The HD65 is a projector that typifies the strengths and weaknesses of DLP Darkchip2 projectors. Saturation is really very good, black levels and shadow detail are good, but not exceptional, and sharpness rather average, which in its own right, is not an issue of significance.

It is also a projector that does a great job, even if you don’t calibrate it or tweak it. It’s out of the box performance is surprisingly good. This is actually surprising for Optoma, who’s projectors usually aren’t that great “out of the box” in terms of color accuracy. For example, the Optoma HD71 is no where near as good in color accuracy out of the box). The out of the box performance is going to be a really strong selling point for those that just want to buy an affordable projector, and enjoy it, without having to “screw around with it”!