Review: BenQ W1070+ Projector & WDP01 Wireless Kit
Taiwanese consumer electronics giant, BenQ, has achieved many great things since their spin off from Acer some 14 years ago. Today they’re solidly placed as a market leader in the projector market, but also renowned for their consumer, gaming and professional screens and monitors.
Being fortunate enough to build a dedicated room for the professional reviewing of audio products earlier this year, it made good sense that the room would double as a home theatre for our young family. Being an ‘audio guy’, a crash course would be required to gain an understanding of projector standards, screen gain, projector throw, and all the associated knowledge required.
While the room that would become our home theatre was adequate proportionally (7.1 x 5.5m), a beam spanning the width of the room would create some limitations and dictate the use of a ‘short throw’ projector.
Our budget was predominantly invested in the build of the room (sound proofing, acoustic treatment etc), and the Hi-Fi components themselves. This left only a small budget for the visual component of our home theatre, but a great opportunity to discover what could be achieved for a small investment.
After looking at the options available from a number of manufacturers, BenQ’s W1070+ projector fulfilled our requirements of 100” (1080p) from a projection distance as small as 2.5m. It also features Lens Shift which would allow us to permanently mount the projector unit right up against the ceiling.
Weighing just 2.75kgs there was certainly no need for bulky or heavy duty mounts.
The W1070+ offers a few new features over the outgoing W1070, notably the compatibility with BenQ’s WDP01 Full HD Wireless Kit. Whilst we were in the process of roughing in our cables, it would have been easy to run HDMI cables. However, the ability to stream wirelessly from a source or AV Receiver directly to the projector, needing only to provide power was very appealing. Less cables, less things to go wrong.
Despite being sceptical of BenQ’s claim of 1080p Full HD streaming from up to 30 meters (line of sight), I took the plunge and decided against running any video cabling to the projector position.
Other improvements in the ‘+’ model include increased brightness at 2,200 lumens, and a revised menu and improved remote control.
MHL support is also now included, which allows the connection of your smartphone to stream TV, movies or videos in high definition directly to your projector.
The W1070+ projector also includes keystone adjustment which offers the flexibility of being able to project from the side of the room. Whilst best avoided in critical home theatre applications, It’s a nice feature for less critical applications, such as showing off your latest holiday snaps or gaming.
The projector is also 3D-ready but is not supplied with BenQ’s 3D active shutter glasses, which can be purchased online for around $100 (2 pair).
We coupled the projector with a 100” motorised screen from TCC ($699 RRP) and while this is by no means considered a high-end screen, it seemed a perfect match given the budget and affordability of this combination.
There’s all the inputs you’d ever need, including two HDMI (one featuring MHL), VGA, a component video input and a composite input. The Wireless Kit mounts to the projector itself via a supplied bracket, and connections are made to the USB inputs on the projector, resulting in a tidy installation.
The wireless transmitter sits near your source or AV Receiver. The wireless transmitter features 3 HDMI inputs and auto-source detection.