You know how it goes, there’s always talk about setting up your own Home Cinema but there’s always something that comes up or you’re side-tracked by pop-up street food markets as spring begins. But, moving on from the first wafts of meat in the air, I feel a lot of us are in a better place when it comes to the notion of screening your favourite films at home, complete with snacks, beers and Idris Elba cancelling the apocalypse in brilliant colour and clarity, projected up there on your living room wall or pull-down screen.
While it sounds awesome, it’s very much about affordability, I know I haven’t got a spare grand lying around, and I rarely see anything of less than £800 for a worthy, decent projector. So whether you’re an every-day film lover, or it’s a growing obsession, I wanted to review and recommend the BenQ W1050 for its ease of use and accurate colour performance and, also, because it’s out there at an achievable cost. But I also felt it was important to break down whether the lower cost still offers a decent quality in both sound and vision. So with that in mind, here’s some analysis of what I’ve found after testing out my new BenQ W1050 for a few weeks.
First impressions and setting up the BenQ W1050
Arriving in all-white, it’s a solid, sufficient piece of technology that’s also light enough to move around easily and even install on your ceiling, if you wanted to. One key point though, even this early on, is that you’ll need to connect a separate sound system to make full use of everything. Don’t expect much sound from the projector itself because unless you’ve got the hearing of an Owl in the dead of night, you won’t be able to pick up much beyond a faint whisper. Already got a Soundbar or an external set of speakers? Great, you’re on the way to getting the home movie experience going. I’ve been using some normal, external speakers via the source of my film but it’s good to know you’ve got options.
For this test, I connected up my laptop and plugged everything in to try out some Inception goodness via an HD digital download. Setup is central to a good, clean picture and so is location. While you don’t explicitly need a projector screen, it helps if you’ve got one but all this comes from using it on my large white wall to see what it offers. I felt a movie like Christopher Nolan’s Inception would be a strong experiment in terms of clarity, colour and focus. BenQ are proud of their Cinematic Color Technology for their film projectors and frankly, it’d be rude not to push it to its limits.
What’s BenQ Cinematic Color Technology?
Basically, this is all about getting the best colours that you possibly can from the W1050 as no-one wants a pale film (or a distracting ‘rainbow effect) that doesn’t stand out – I also tested some segments from Watchmen out for this and look how impressive Doctor Manhattan looks in my gallery below. The BenQ team have set the machine up to offer a 6x speed six-segment colour wheel (RGBRGB) which covers over 96% of Rec.709 colour space. Simply put, it’s a clear, vivid image without that unsatisfying rainbow effect you might have seen.
This is obviously important with such a large screen and given the fact you can project from above or below, and onto the front of back of a screen, you want that quality from everywhere. This is something I didn’t expect, and something unassuming that impressed.
You also want the bright colours to work alongside the Full-HD, sharp 1080p definition which I was projecting through the W1050 and an HDMI cable, of which you have two slots. Take a look at my shots, whilst other lights were out and also some in daylight, of Star Wars: The Last Jedi when I pulled the projector back to 2.8m to give me a 100 inches image – it looked truly sublime.
If you want more in-depth stats, head here.
Not technical? Don’t worry at all.
If you’re not mechanically minded don’t worry because, truthfully, neither am I but I’ve learned as I go along. Just follow the instructions and get yourself moving. What you need is there, so just follow unhurriedly if you’re a newcomer to all this. You’ll be fine and, once again, don’t forget you’ll want external speakers to sort it out.
It important to point out that the BenQ W1050 does give off a little buzz of noise during use but, for me, you the sound of your film should easily outweigh that issue and if it doesn’t, turn it up to a proper home cinema experience. It’s why we’re doing this, after all. I’d recommend making sure the projector isn’t too enclosed, due to the working heat from the projector and, finally, they could have designed a slightly more stylish remote control but it’s one that does the job.
If you’re concerned you haven’t got a white wall or a screen, the W1050 does offer options to counteract that in its menu but obviously I couldn’t test that as I’m fortunate enough to have a huge, spare, white wall for Home Cinema fun. Again, there’s also a way to secure the BenQ W0105 from the ceiling, if you’ve got that available space, but – yet again – make sure you’ve got the other connections ready. I haven’t but it’ll still find its place amongst the gadgets.
The BenQ W1050 is stress-free to setup and get up and running. I also have to repeat that the colour spectrum involved was something important to me, and it hasn’t let me down at all in that respect. Logically, it’s one of the most vital ingredients to any cinematic experience and they pretty much nail it, and at a slightly ridiculous, affordable price when compared to other offerings out there. All in all, it’s a very smart home cinema projector indeed.
You can buy the W1050 on our link, currently for a bargain price of £469.00: https://amzn.to/2HHBvWV