Review Price free/subscription
BenQ W1000 DLP Projector - BenQ W1000
With any DLP projector there’s always a big concern over the quality of the DLP engine at its heart. But in the W1000’s case, the signs are promising, thanks to the projector’s use of a six-segment 'advanced’ colour wheel. This should, hopefully, be enough to limit the appearance of DLP technology’s dreaded motion fizzing noise, and the rainbow effect, where stripes of pure red, green and blue spark up over bright points of the image.
The colour wheel isn’t the only effort BenQ has put into colour with the W1000. For surprisingly for its money, it also features Texas Instruments’ BrilliantColour processing for boosting colour saturations; a 3D colour management system; and OSRAM’s UNISHAPE technology.
The last two of these features warrant more explanation. The 3D Colour Management system really is a decent stab at offering a popular custom installation feature on a budget projector, allowing you to adjust the hue, saturation and gain of the red, green, blue, cyan, magenta and yellow image elements. Admittedly, the interface for this is pretty basic, but the fact that so much flexibility is there at all is impressive.
The rather magnificently named OSRAM UNISHAPE system, meanwhile, reckons to produce as much as 40 per cent more brightness from a DLP projector by varying the intensity of the projector lamp in sync with the rotations of the colour wheel.
As if all these features weren’t already surprising enough on a sub-£1k DLP projector, the W1000’s onscreen menus are stuffed with yet more fine-tuning, including a Gamma control, a four-step white peaking adjustment, a film mode, a multi-level flesh tone adaptor, and an optional 3D comb filter.
With so much flexibility around, it was also very pleasing to find the W1000 offering no less than three 'User’ preset memories, as well as Cinema, Dynamic and Standard pre-programmed presets. In an ideal world BenQ might have added a Game preset to that list, but it doesn’t take much effort to set one up yourself in one of the User preset slots.
Given how much there is going on in its onscreen menus, it’s a bit disappointing that the W1000’s 'physical’ set up features are rather limited. For instance, the level of zoom available is just 1.2:1 - a fact which, when coupled with the provided short-throw lens, means that you won’t be able to use it at the back of your room to get a 100in picture unless your room is under 4.3m long.
It’s also a slight shame - though hardly surprising at the W1000’s price level - that there’s no optical vertical image shift available, leaving you dependent on a drop down front leg and picture-distorting keystone correction to get the edges of your image straight. Unless, that is, you’re able to perch the projector at the perfect height for your screen - maybe via a projector floor stand mount.
The W1000 is pretty easy to maintain, at least, thanks to a very easily accessed lamp housing, and the fact that it uses a filter-free design. The lamp should last a respectable 4,000 hours, too, if you use the projector in its Economy mode. (You’ll get 3,000 hours if you don’t.)