If you want a 4K DLP home theater projector that BenQ says will deliver "perfect DLP picture quality to rival a commercial digital cinema" (and who wouldn't want that), the BenQ HT8050 is here. And it is the only 4K DLP projector with THX Certification at the moment. Rated at 2,200 lumens, and delivering 8.3 million pixels on screen (3840x2160), it's priced at $7,999.
BenQ HT8050 key features:
- 4K UHD, 3840x2160 resolution: 8.3 million pixels on screen
- Perfect convergence-- single-chip DLP design eliminates any possibility of panel misalignment
- 2,200 ANSI Lumens
- Built-in support for optional anamorphic lens for ultra-wide 2.35:1 aspect ratio
- THX Certified to ensure accurate reproduction of movie content as the director intended
- Rec. 709 color accuracy
- 10-bit, 1.07 billion colors
- ISF Day and Night modes
- Extraordinarily low noise level: 23dB (in Eco mode) to 26dB
- 6X speed, RGBRGB color wheel
- 4K-optimized lens system with 14-element, 6-group lens array
- Manual horizontal and vertical lens shift
- 1.5x manual zoom lens; 1.36 - 2.03 throw ratio
- Lamp life: 3,000 hours in Normal mode; 4,000 in Eco, 6,000 in SmartEco
- 3-year advance-replacement warranty
Most of the focus for the BenQ HT8050 is on features that improve image quality. Along with its THX certified mode and ISF certification with ISF Day and Night modes, it offers advanced video processing that includes a 4K Pixel Enhancer for motion-adaptive edge enhancement; a Flesh Tone feature to prevent off-color skin tones; and a Color Enhancer for improving color saturation, fine gradients, and intermediate hues. And there's more as well.
BenQ says the HT8050 has a high ANSI contrast ratio and a 50,000:1 rating with the auto iris and BenQ's Dynamic Black technology feature. It also offers a feature BenQ calls Precise Gamma Control, designed to smooth grayscale performance, prevent overexposed bright scenes, and preserve shadow detail. Beyond that, the 14-element, 6-group lens array boasts 4K optimization--including, for example, a proprietary low-dispersion lens coating to minimize chromatic aberration. And for watching movies in an ultra-wide 2.35:1 aspect ratio, the projector offers support for an optional anamorphic lens.
The focus on setup convenience is just as strong. In particular, the 1.5x zoom lens, both vertical and horizontal lens shift, and front-facing vents help make installation easy, even with the 32.6 pound weight.
The HT8050's zoom lens will let you place the projector anywhere from about 13 to 19 feet from the screen to get a 130" 16:9 diagonal image. For the screen size you want, check the Projection Calculator, preloaded with the BenQ HT8050's throw data.
With respect to fan noise, the HT8050's dB rating is exceptionally low. At 23dB in the new Silence mode (a new feature for BenQ's HT projectors) and a maximum 26dB, you can position it just about anywhere without worrying about fan noise. And the low noise level will flat out improve the viewing experience.
The HT8050 comes with a three year advance replacement warranty on the projector and 1 year or 2000 hours for the lamp.
Count the BenQ HT8050 as a particularly intriguing entry in the small, but growing, category of sub-$10,000 4K projectors. It's sure to attract attention when it begins to ship at the end of this month as one of the first 4K projectors featuring the 4K DLP chip to make it to market.
To follow the release of all 4K projectors, see the 4K Projector Tracker for tips on how to use the Database sorts.