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BenQ MS517 Low-priced Classroom Projector

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Highly Recommended Projector
Ease of Use
Intended Use:
BenQ MS517 Projector BenQ MS517
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13000:1 Contrast Ratio
2800 Lumens
PC 3D Ready
Street Price: n/a

With it's eye-catching low price, at $339 street, and its 2800-lumen rating, the DLP-based BenQ MS517 delivers lots of lumens per dollar. Similar in many ways to the BenQ MW519, which we've reviewed separately, it's basically a variation on the same design at a lower price. The key difference is a lower native resolution, at 800x600 instead of the MW519's 1280x800.

The 800x600 resolution is a poor choice for showing fine detail, whether in the form of data images like big spreadsheets or video at 1080p. However, it's a good choice for simpler data images, like bullet points in a PowerPoint presentation, or for watching video at low resolution but large size.

Weighing only 5.1 pounds, the MS517 is also portable, at only about two pounds heavier than LED-based models with lower brightness and higher prices. Most important is that it delivers more than acceptable image quality for both data and video, although it tends to show rainbow artifacts easily in video. If you need a basic projector, particularly for data, the MS517 can qualify as a bargain.

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