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BenQ W1070+ review

Katharine Byrne
29 Dec 2014
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
665
inc VAT

The W1070+'s optional wireless isn't as good as the competition, but this is still a fantastic projector in its own right

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Specifications

Projector type: DLP, Native resolution: 1,920x1,080, Video inputs: HDMI x2, VGA, component, composite, Lamp life: 3,000h, Lamp brightness: 2,200 lumen, Size: 104x312x244mm, Weight: 2.75kg

The BenQ W1070+ is the successor to last year’s excellent W1070. The Full HD, 3D-ready DLP projector has kept the same design as last year’s model, but this time includes a brighter 2,200 ANSI lumen lamp and, more importantly, is fully compatible with BenQ’s wireless projection system.

It's unusual to see a projector at this price with wireless support, although sadly the WDS01 Wireless Full HD Kit isn’t included in the box, meaning you'll have to spend another £236 (www.shop.benq.eu). Still, it's great to have the option available and it makes setting up the projector that much more flexible than non-wireless models. After plugging a source into the WDS01's transmitter and the receiver into the projector, you can project your content from anywhere in the room, allowing you to move the W1070+ around without being tied to your AV cabinet. 

It’s not quite as simple as other wireless systems we've seen, such as Epson’s EH-TW6600W which has a built in receiver, but the range on BenQ’s kit is much greater. BenQ claims its wireless coverage can reach up to 30m or 100ft when both units are placed in direct line of sight, but it should also work through walls and cabinet doors.

When we tried it out for ourselves, we managed to place them around 35ft apart in the same room with several boxes, obstacles and conflicting Wi-Fi signals in the way before the signal gave out, but we couldn’t get a picture at all if the transmitter and receiver weren't facing each other. The image could also be a bit grainy and pixelated if the connection wasn’t very strong. That figure halved to about 12-15ft when we placed our PS3 in the next room, but even this should still be suitable for most home cinema setups.

The W1070+ also has 5 per cent vertical lens shift, which is another rarity at this price. The control is admittedly a little fiddly, as you’ll need a flathead screwdriver to use it, but it nevertheless makes the setup process that bit easier.

IMAGE QUALITY

With its bright 2,220 ANSI lumen lamp, the W0170+ copes brilliantly with ambient light. Colours were still rich and punchy in the dark, moonlit forests of Avatar’s Pandora, even in our brightly lit test room, so you won’t have to shroud your room in darkness every time you want to watch a film. Completely black areas were still a little tricky to make out when we had the lights on, but we were still impressed with its vivid colour reproduction.

There are plenty of picture options to choose from as well. The five main picture modes (Standard, Cinema, Bright and two User modes), can all be customised to your liking. On top of basic brightness, contrast, colour, sharpness and colour temperature settings, you can also switch the lamp to eco mode, alter the gamma, enable noise reduction and tweak colour controls, including RGB gain and offset, and RGBCMY hue, saturation and gain. 

There’s no frame interpolation, as we’d expect from a projector of this price, but the W1070+’s image processing was more than up to the task of handling fast-paced action sequences. In Avatar, for example, camera pans showed little to no judder whatsoever, making it a very comfortable viewing experience. We hardly noticed the dreaded ‘rainbow effect’ that sometimes plagues DLP projectors either, so the W1070+ is a good choice if you’re particularly susceptible to the effect.

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