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BenQ PB8220 User Reviews

BenQ PB8220 Projector

BenQ PB8220

XGA (1024x768), 2200 ANSI Lumens,
6.9 lbs, $2,995 (MSRP)
View Specs
4.0 out of 5
38 User Ratings
Image Quality 4.3
Features 4.1
Construction 4.0
Ease of Use 4.1
Reliability 3.4
Value for Money 4.0

User Reviews

Write a Review
Review by Californian

The worst projector ever had, I have 7 of them in the class room for 3 years, 3 are bad not fixable, the board are bad, power on but it would not turn on. The tech guy said that this is a worst projector he ever encountered since he is in this field The lamp should last for 2000 hrs, but averagely around 300 hrs.!!!! NEC, Sanyo, Hitachi projectors in another classrooms never had problem in 10 years only have to replace a light bulb when it reach to its time.

Any Problems: Lamp blows up around close to 1/4 of its life(suppose good for 2000 hrs) but averagely it lasted around 300 hrs. I encountered often with the following problem: black out(not power off by itself), let it cool for a while and if lucky it will work again, but so far no luck, only work for few hours. max, the other only around 10 minutes 2 with the board is bad, it power on but it would the lamp can not be turned on The board is bad(3 just discarded not worth it to fix) And all of them with the lamp blow up every 2-3 months!!!

Review by Downramp

I have a love/hate relationship with my PB8220 - it produces great images when it works, but has spent 6 of the first 18 months of its life in the repair shop (and that's before it's even had 300 hours run up on the lamp). If you're going to spend many thousands of dollars on a projector, trust me, you don't want something that breaks all the time. Look at another manufacturer.

Review by Jim

The BenQ8220 has been replaced 4 times. The customer service dept worked well with us but it is still a hassle. When it works it produces a great picture.

Any Problems: The projector just blanks out. Between the four projectors we have only about 200 hours of use. We also had the projector lose the red colors and had to reset it a couple of time. And Yes we do have adequate ventilation.

Review by Henry

This projector, per specification, is good value for the money... when it works. Unfortunately, two different units have broken so far. Bad news.

Any Problems: Same problem as others have described: after a few months, unit will shut itself down after about 5 minutes of use. Has happened twice on two different units. We use this projector about 4 hours each week. That's all. Purchased in 6/2005, broke by December. BenQ sent a replacement unit (two-day, fast turnaround), and that one broke in 4/2006. This is a class-action lawsuit waiting to happen.

Review by JCTrustee

I've had one for two years. First it was replaced because of problems right out of the box, but the 2nd one worked fine. Good picture in high ambiant light room.

Any Problems: Problem - a replacement bulb has been on backorder for over 6 wks with three promised dates passed. Others have similar stories re BenQ part backorders. I will never buy another BenQ product.


Mine never worked for more than 3-5 months. They repaired it 6 times so far. WORST consumer electronis product I have ever owned. Do yourself a favor - buy a different brand.

Review by Mark

Benq sent me the PB8220 as a replacement to my DX650 when it died. I was very impressed with picture quality, brightness, and contrast ratio. However, after 4 months it started doing weird things like flipping the image around while I was using it! Benq customer support sent me a new (refurbished) one right away. 6 months later image quality (brightness mostly) had degraded greatly, especially with HD 1080i input. Benq customer support is replacing it with a PB8250! Bottom line - projector quality is excellent, but reliability may be low. Customer support is awesome.

Any Problems: Reliability issues (see above).

Review by John Westra

We've been installing these units in a variety of commercial settings. A typical installation is suspended from the ceiling using a universal projector mount. We typically use two connections; an S-Video connection for TV/DVD content and the VGA connection for attaching a wireless video unit that allows people with laptops to display their screens on the projector. We recommend the BenQ for almost any type of small to medium size home theatre / presentation environment.

Any Problems: Not really a "problem," but we would like to see BenQ provide an option to "lock" settings and require a passcode to change them. It's too easy for someone with access to the remote to change a setting and not know how to restore it.

Review by matt

When I first got the projector, I turned it on and had a solid white vertical line up the entire viewing area. At about a 60 inch screen, the line was an inch wide. Besides that, I was very impressed with the quality of the picture and the projector overall. I called Benq tech support and they shipped out a PB8240 model projector and are paying for return shipping. VERY impressed with warranty coverage.

Any Problems: White vertical line up entire viewing area.

Review by Jason

Image is stunning. I was most impressed. this was my first HT proj and it was a great first step. I enjoyed the use of component RCA cables. But I am now ready to move on. I will go with a different projector in the next year to year and a half.

Any Problems: The problems I encountered were a string of minor anoyances that never stuck around for long. 1. It's not loud, but it aint quiet. As long as my heater is off, I have no problems. It's kind of interesting to note...Room temperature is what the proj prefers! If the temp rised to 69 or 70, that is when the Louder fan kicks on. 2. Every once in a while thescreen goes toally green or red...If I wiggle the component cables it goes away for a few minutes...(I know what you are thinking, but it does this on the start up screeen as well..WHEN NO CABLES ARE EVEN CONNECTED) I have no idea why it does this, but it goes away for Months at a time and only rears it's ugly head after an unplug. Thats it...have HD and a progressive scan DVD player and you will stare for hours at your wall!

Review by Kevin

Died within a week of purchase. BenQ customer service was very prompt and courteous with their "Hot Swap" policy. If it fails within 30 days of purchase (keep your receipt), they'll send you a new one via fedex right away. Contrary to what someone else posted earlier, yes, they do charge your credit card, but that's just insurance for them. As soon as they receive your returned broken projector, they refund your credit card. Also contrary to what some else posted earlier, in my case they did not have another PB8220 in stock to send me, so they sent me a PB8240 - a better model worth $400 or so more. While I was not happy this projector failed, I was very happy with BenQ's customer service and the fact that I received a new projector via fedex two days later.

Any Problems: Within a few days of purchase, it started randomly flipping the image upside-down and turning purple (it had red and blue but no green), and then it just started shutting off at random for no reason. A red light came on, but nowhere in the user manual does it tell you what the indicating lights mean. The problem normally occurred within the first half hour of turning it on, but after going through the 120 second cool-down shutdown process and restarting it, it seemed to work okay for an hour or two after that. Then one night it just totally died - red light and nothing else.

Review by Larry

This projector has a great picture and works well in moderate ambient light situations. I use it primarily for games and movies on an HTPC; but it also works very well with several game consoles on both component and composite inputs.

Any Problems: I gave it a "poor" for reliability because I am having problems I think are related to overheating. The projector will shut down with the "lamp" light lit after only a few minutes of use. This has been getting steadily worse.

Review by vanbc

Have put this projector through its paces and find it to be excellent value. Even projecting on to an off colour wall or sheet, image is very good.

Any Problems: This projector shoots "up" more than I expected. Fine for a low table in a big room, with a long distance to a large screen, but that is most folk's normal projection situation. The manual says to avoid propping it up/down more than 15 degrees, which is very hard to avoid. The remote does not have a "back" function for cycling powerpoint slides, at least not one that I can find. I see this projector is now out of production. I am a bit concerned re replacement parts/bulbs.

Review by Mite51

I got my PB8220 for $1600 CDN and I am very happy with it. However, there are some features that I wonder why they even bothered. I was looking for was a bright and high res projector, best bang for my buck basically and wasnt disappointed. Progrssive scan DVD player with component inputs looks amazing. Works well for anything with component video really, video game console or computer. 15 pin video input, again, excellent image. *Thought I had a dead pixel, turned out to be a nail hole :P When I first started it up the image didnt seem very bright, but after about 3 minutes it reaches full brightness. With lights on at night its only slightly less bright than my TV. Will be picking up a glass beaded screen soon, which should end up making it brighter than my TV. Comes with a wide array of video and power cable s, Remote with built in laser pointer, Leather carrying case. good height adjustment legs. Good construction on the unit itself and the inputs are well laid out. Didnt notice any rainbow effect.

Any Problems: Cons ( most very minor ): - (major)keystone adjustment is digital and looks like crap, will be getting an adjustable screen and adjusting that rather than using keystone correction. - lens cap will adjust focus and zoom when attached. - PIP only works for computer input. - Scenes with lots of white or a full white screen seems WAY to bright :). Was playing Counter strike at night and a flashbang went off ( totally white screen ) nearly blinded me for real. -If you power down there is a cooldown periodbefore you can power up again. Not a huge deal but long enough to be worth mentioning -Image seems to point up a little much, seems like if it was mounted above shoulder height it would have to point down ( by proping up the back with a something ) - Menu could have been done a lot better, very unintuitive. It gets the job done but after 2 weeks I find myself hating it more. Much like poorly done early monitor adjustment.

Review by Darin

This is one of the best projectors I'd ever worked with. The colors are bold, whites are as white as snow and the sharpness is fantastic. Skin tones are excellent. Benq did a good job on this model it is excellent value for the price.

Any Problems: None really. In one case I had the projector off centre on the table and was able to see a rainbow quite consistantly. Once I repositioned the projector, the rainbow went away. This projector has a 3X color wheel which really helps.

Review by Timmeh

ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE! The quality of this projector is astounding, the picture is AMAZING, the brightness is way more than I needed and the features are cool. Picture-in-picture with the smaller picture is bigger than my TV? WOW! Amazing. I never experienced any rainbowing or anything wrong the projector at all. Best for movies and presentations.

Any Problems: Not at fault of the projector at all, but watching non-HDTV television shows isn't that great. Ofcourse regular broadcast is very low thusly at no fault of the projector. Just don't buy this to replace a TV

Review by Wil

The projector was a good buy. It has pretty good reviews and it came with an extra lamp for free. It was just what I was looking for when I was thinking about setting up a home theater, but I am having major Overheating issues.

Any Problems: My first lamp exploded at 565 hours. I had replaced the lamp with a new one. This time the lamp did not expode after 500 hours. The projector will just shut down. Benq was nice enough to replace my projector with a refurbished one, but it did it again. This replacement projector also shuts down after a about 5 minutes as if it were overheating again. It there a problem with the PB8220?

Review by Max W

I have been debating between a rear projection TV and front projection for a while. After I bought this, I'm absolutely proud of my decision. To share with some of you that are still debating, here are my two cents: - The image quality is astounding, especially in light controlled environment. I was kind of sneaky when I bought this BenQ with my wife. She was not happy when she found out I blew $1600 on a TV. But when she saw the 10ft HD image just on a plain wall, I can see her drooling. Even with that size, the image is fantastic. (Being an optical engineer, I think I know what I'm doing.) I'm especially impressed with vivid color after so used to see bluish tinted powerpoint slide presentation in meetings. Fan noise is minimal. I honest doubt how plasma or LCD manufacturers can still survive. The only drawback I can see is that when ambient light is strong, image on screen tends to become washed out. But for me and for most of us, it's really not a problem. We typically watch TV or movie during night and weekend. You don't really need to totally darken the room to bring out the best of this projector. - Being cheap, I bought a $200 HDTV tuner and $100 roof top antenna and pre-amplifier. Use that with the projector, I can really enjoy HDTV for free. I live about 20 miles from TV tower. I put the antenna in attic. It worked beautifully. I already have a fairly decent A/V system so I just hook them up. Literally I spent less than 2 grands to set up my own new home theater (You can buy screen for a little over $100). I'm really making my neighbor who just bought "giant" plasma TV hopping mad. The only problems I can report are: - The lens cover will mess up the focus. It's annoying each time you have to readjust focus. - There's a slight band of leaked light surrounding the image. It can easily be covered up, but BenQ should think of re-design so the leaked light from projector is directed away from screen. - I'm kind of disappointed that PIP (Picture in picture) only works when one input has to be PC, not any source. - Manual is pretty simple and to the point. But it could use some editorial help to help a non-techie. It assumes people bought unit know what they are doing. Overall, I highly highly recommend this unit. In this price range, I compared with Misubishi, InFocus and other models. This one offers the best performance(feature)/price combination. I'm very pleased. For lower price model, I checked out a few. theri resolution/image/color are not as great. A few extra hundred is well worth spending. Unless you are really a A/V purist, this unit will make you very happy.

Review by Dan Q

Was originally looking into a 70" LCD rptv. I'm glad that I didn't and whent for this projector. Better contrast ratio, higher resolution and a more balanced viewing overall all for less than 1/2 the price of the tv. Can't beat the picture using component cables. No rainbow effects, no motion artifacts as long as component cables are used and especially when connected to a progressive scan dvd player. I have over 30hours of use and I still can't stop feeling so proud of my HT system. All our friends that has seen this and who mostly owns plasma and LCD tv want to setup a HT with this projector now. By the way, I only spent $ 20 for a 103" fixed screen with a flat white Vinyl surface I bought from Home depot. A little bit of simple black painted frame and voila, custom screen with all the jazz.... Excellent unit.

Any Problems: None encountered....

Review by Tim

I searched and read this a several other HT sites before jumping for the 8220. The projector is great except for the fine focus.

Any Problems: I have now been able to try two 8220s and they both demonstrated the same poor fine-focus capability or lack there of. The original one I sent back because of the fine focus and I was promised a new replacement. I recieved a refurbished unit but decided to try it just the same. Still no fine focus. I am now waiting for the third and next new 8220 to try but I am not holding my breathe. I will update when it arrives and I mount it. Otherwise the 8220 has great bang-for-the-buck. The bright, high contrast picture has no problems with ambient light and if your HT room is large enough the fan noise will be of little consequence. Their tech support is doing a fine job IMO. I am waiting but they are actively trying to get my RMA closed. More to come. Tim