BenQ Australia W5000
- Excellent contrast and blacks, extremely sharp, Brilliant Colour system is great
- Only 1.2x zoom, limited vertical shift
When it's able to be set-up correctly, the BenQ W5000 displays images with amazing clarity and colour.
Price$ 4,499.00 (AUD)
BenQ's W5000 HT Projector is more expensive than models with competing specifications on paper, but it justifies its price-tag with its brilliant picture quality. The projector delivers an even colour with a very slight tinge towards greens, although this is easily fixed using the calibration options. Its black levels are good, and detail in shadowy scenes are reproduced extremely well.
The projector itself, when compared to other models is certainly heavy, boasting a solid build quality and a thick casing. It's also one of the largest models on the market. It has a standard array of ports, including two HDMI connectors, as well as composite, S-Video and two component inputs.
In terms of image quality, the W5000 is ahead of the other 1080p projectors we've tested. There is a wide range of setup options, such as keystone correction, as well as focus and tilt control all accessible through the internal menus. Colour calibration can be defined using three separate user modes, offering a wide variety of colour temperatures and tints. Picture sharpness was incredibly high and well-defined in our tests, and was especially noticeable in close-up skin and face shots where every imperfection and pore is resolved in clear detail.
The high contrast level — when combined with the unit's great sharpness levels — means that the projected images almost jump out from the screen, giving a very three-dimensional and immersive feel. It's contrast ratio is officially quoted at 10,000:1, lower than other competing models whose estimations range all the way up to 50,000:1. However, in all instances we tested it in, the BenQ didn't display any contrast shortfalls whatsoever, in some situations it even looked better than the competition. This is most likely due to the inclusion of BenQ's dynamic iris technology, which alters the contrast and light levels whenever necessary based on the source material.
The W5000's picture can also be tweaked using its Brilliant Colour system. Whether it is switched on or off makes a significant difference to light output and image quality. The unit defaults to a cinema mode with 1200 lumens; significantly brighter than competitors' outputs. When you turn on Brilliant Colour it bumps up the brightness of mid-tones and highlights while leaving dark areas dark in order to preserve detail. We did notice that this mode somewhat increased the levels of digital noise noticeable in images. This means that BenQ's brightness boost system is a trade-off between brightness and high contrast, and a slightly lower picture quality. We preferred to not use the Brilliant Colour for pure image quality, though when not actively looking for noise in the image the improvements were pleasant.
Since the W5000 supports 24p — displaying 24 frames per second, equal to that of cinema productions — there is no image stuttering evident when watching movies. No motion blurring in fast-moving scenes could be found, either.One minor point is that the W5000 lacks setup flexibility. It only boasts a 1.2x zoom; shorter than the 2x standard on other 1080p models of that price. On top of this it doesn't have a great deal of vertical lens shift. Both of these are a compromise for the great image and build quality of the lens and unit.
If you have the ability to mount the W5000 in a suitable position for your home theatre, it offers fantastic image quality and extreme sharpness, if for a slightly higher price than the competition.
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