13/11/2014

By Adam Stacey, Fresh Business Thinking


Projectors are a big investment for businesses - whether they are used in board meetings or when presenting to potential clients - and it is essential that they can meet your business needs.

That is why this week at Fresh Business Thinking, we have managed to get our hands on Ben Q’s W1500 projector, to put it to the test!

Design

The W1500 is an attractive machine, with its white gloss chassis giving it a modern feel, which would fit in well within any setting. However, the plastic feel of the casing does make you wonder about the durability of the projector and whether it would be able to stand up to daily life.

The remote control that comes with the projector is small and comfortable to hold, with a convenient backlight. The buttons cover all the main functions, are sensibly laid out and easy to use.

Connections

The rear of the projector hides a very presentable suite of connections. Two HDMIs (providing both 2D and 3D digital connection), a component video port, a D-Sub PC port, a RS-232 port, a S-Video port, a composite video port, and even an audio line input to reflect the fact that the projector carries a built-in speaker system (should you not mind listening to sound that’s coming from somewhere other than the screen!).

Set-up

Setting the W1500 up was a breeze; easily connecting to whatever device you want to project from. However, it is a bulky thing! So if you are in a position where you may have to carry it around, this may not be the projector for you.

The W1500 is one of a growing number of projectors to support wireless HDMI, whereby it can receive full HD video signals without the need for a cabled connection. The necessary transmitter for the wireless HDMI is included free with the projector, and you simply plug the dongle that comes in the box into an HDMI output on the video source, plug in the dongle's power cord, and then pick Wireless as the connection choice at the projector.

You also get one free pair of BenQ’s 144Hz active shutter 3D glasses. The projector’s 3D transmitter is built into its chassis.

Use

The image settings are controlled via buttons on the top of the projector (as well as the remote), from where you can also access the zoom and manual focusing rings. There's a lens-shift control too, however, there's only limited room for manoeuvre of about 5cm up or down.

The picture quality of the projector is excellent, even in small spaces, offering a bright and crisp image. Users looking for smooth, judder-free images will appreciate the addition of a frame interpolation mode in the BenQ W1500. And the good news is that this works very well, as judder is effectively eliminated.

Rainbow effects are kept well under control on the W1500. Although rainbows were still visible in certain scenes, the general consensus was that the W1500 kept them at an acceptable level.

Lamp usage is quoted at between 3000 and a very respectable 6000 hours, depending on which lamp setting you settle on.

Verdict

The BenQ W1500 is certainly an investment, with a price tag of around £1,100. However, with its wide range of functions and excellent image quality, this projector certainly is a cut above the rest.