Projector Reviews

BenQ W1070 – A "First Look" Projector Review

Greetings everyone,

BenQ’s W1070: Affordable DLP, 3D, home entertainment projector

The BenQ W1070 arrived about two weeks ago, but due to scheduling, all I could do was give it to Mike for calibration.  As soon as he returned it, we “put a stamp on it” and shipped it to Pete – one of our Gamer – Projector – Bloggers.

Pete should be posting his thoughts on the BenQ W1070 as a gaming projector, over the next few days.

Now, since I personally never fired up the W1070 projector I’m just going to take a few paragraphs to report on the BenQ’s feature set, and also relate some of the key measurements from Mike’s calibrating of the projector.  Here goes:

BenQ’s W1070 projector is a 1080p single chip DLP projector claiming 2000 lumens.  It’s small – downright portable at under 6 pounds, and has a built in speaker.   A contrast claim of 10,000:1 indicates more than the minimal black level performance that some other entry level projectors offer.  (A typical DLP without a dynamic iris usually has claims of 2000:1 to 3000:1.)

This BenQ projector has, as we’ve seen before from BenQ, three lamp mode combinations, not the two.  Officially they are rated 3500 hours, 5000 hours and 6000 hours.  That should keep cost of ownership nice and low.  A one year warranty is typical in the price range.

Mike was extremely impressed with the before and after color quality.  He found that the W1070 projector had really good RGB balance right out of the box.  Mike took User 1, which at default is almost as bright as Dynamic, to calibrate.  With or without calibration, the W1070 breaks 1700 lumens (at mid-point on the zoom lens), brighter at full wide angle (almost 1850 lumens).  Mike measures conservatively, so getting within about 7% of claim is unusually good.

In Mike’s calibration of the W1070, he ended up with one of the tightest color temp ranges yet, downright surprising for a low cost projector. Post calibration, every temperature from 20 IRE to 100 IRE (white) measured within 6418K and 6500K.  Color should look great as both RGB and individual colors are very balanced (great).

Now when it comes to the picture itself, I can’t help you there, having not yet seen this projector in action, but it should be back here in about a week.  I expect I’ll be tackling it immediately after the JVC DLA-X55 which I’m currently reviewing.  The timing should be close to perfect, so I would hope to finish the W1070 projector review before Christmas.  If not, then certainly before New Years.  (No one gives me the week off – tsk, tsk.)

Before I forget, the W1070 is a 3D ready projector, but it does not come with any 3D glasses.  BenQ and 3rd party 3D glasses are available.   Here’s a compatibility chart BenQ provides:

Various 3D format supported

Source / format 3D Field Sequential 3D frame packing 3D top bottom 3D side by side
D SUB-PC V V V
HDMI-PC V V V
HDMI-Video V V V V
S-video V
Video V

HDMI-Video:  3D frame packing, is what Blu-ray discs use.

The W1070 is also NVIDIA 3DTV compatible.  We’ve looked at that early on in 3D with an nVidia 3DTV, to try to get all those 2D games converted on the fly, by the nVidia graphics card.  We weren’t successful at the time, the Optoma we reviewed was brand new, and it seems it takes a while to get certified and a driver created for the nVidia graphics card.  Perhaps Pete, who’s got the W1070 will be able to check out whether we can get that 2D – to – 3D games working.

OK, that’s about all I can think of, for a projector that I haven’t even seen out of the box.  Certainly, Mike has had much to say about the color and calibrating the projector, and that’s all good.  I should note that he made an immediate point about how much better the W1070 is in terms of out of the box, and being calibrated, than the older BenQ W1200 which we reviewed. -art