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Performance
5
Features
Ease of Use
Value
Intended Use:
DIY Home Theater
BenQ HT4050 Projector BenQ HT4050
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10000:1 Contrast Ratio
2000 Lumens
Full HD 3D
$1,140 Street Price
$1,299 MSRP

BenQ HT4050 Home Theater Projector

Evan Powell, November 20, 2015

Set Up

The BenQ HT4050 will thrown a 120" diagonal 16:9 image from a distance of between 10 and 16 feet, give or take a couple inches. With this size screen, if you choose to place it at 10 feet, image brightness is maximized, if you put it at 13 feet (the midpoint of the zoom lens), brightness is reduced by about 12%. If you set it all the way back to 16 feet at the telephoto end of the zoom range, image brightness is reduced by 23%. So choose your throw distance carefully while keeping your desired image brightness in mind. Use the Projection Calculator to determine your actual throw distance options based your desired screen size.

The HT4050 has an upward throw angle, such that when placed upright on a table it throws the entire image above the centerline of the lens. The bottom edge of the image is just slightly above the centerline by about three inches on a 120" screen. The vertical lens shift will let you move the image up another 6" or so, to help you target the image to a pre-installed screen. There is also a limited horizontal shift which lets you move the image to the left or right about 10% of the image width.

BenQ HT4050 Lens Shift Controls

Two Knobs for Control of Lens Shift

This lens configuration is designed to be used most efficiently either table mounted or inverted and ceiling mounted. As is typical with this design, placing the projector on a rear shelf and projecting over the heads of the audience will be problematic. You would probably need to tilt the projector downward to position the image properly. This will require keystone adjustment, and depending on the height of the shelf relative to the screen it may require more than the maximum allowable tilt, which is 15 degrees. Also keep in mind that the manual stipulates a clearance of 20 inches between the rear of the projector and the wall. So this is not a "bookshelf" projector.

Installation Trade-offs

Ideal throw distance. The big question is this -- where is the ideal placement when you've got a 1.6x zoom and you can choose to ceiling mount it anywhere between 10 and 16 feet to hit a 120" screen? The trade-offs are these:

1. If you place it at 10 feet, you get the maximum light output from the projector which is good if you need it. The downside is that in this position it throws the widest angle cone of projected light, and light striking the screen toward the sides of the image will tend to bounce off away from the center viewing position. So it is a bit less than ideal for even screen illumination.

2. If you place it at 16 feet, you get the minimum light from the projector, but if that is already enough it doesn't matter. The advantage is that you narrow the cone of projected light, providing a more even illumination of the screen since light hitting the sides of the screen does not bounce off at as much of an oblique angle.

3. If you place it at 13 feet, you get equal trade-offs of the above. Also, in theory the midpoint of the zoom lens is its optical sweet spot, but it is doubtful that a 1080p resolution image is going to tax the optical resolution of the lens enough for you to notice.

Plan for lamp degradation. In planning your installation, keep in mind that a good rule of thumb is to anticipate that high pressure lamps will lose 25% of their brightness in the first 500 hours of operation, then degrade more slowly after that. With this in mind, many people choose their screen size and screen gain assuming they will use the projector's eco-mode for the first 500-750 hours, then switch to full lamp mode for the remainder of the lamp's life. By following this strategy you can even out the average light levels on the screen over the lamp's entire life.


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Limitations and Conclusion
Review Contents: Picture Quality Key Features Performance Set Up
  Limitations and Conclusion

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Comments (9) Post a Comment
Erik Herman Posted Nov 30, 2015 7:53 AM PST
What picture mode was input lag measured from. I see the projector has a "game" mode. I'd be interested if lag is different in this mode with all extra processing turned off (FI, pixel enhancement, etc...). Usually, game mode limits extra processing and improves lag times.
dhanji Posted Dec 7, 2015 11:49 AM PST
very nice and resoneble price
Felix Pimentel Posted Dec 21, 2015 4:08 PM PST
BenQ has released a new firmware version for the HT4050 that * Reduces lag time * Reduces source detect/connect time

Please contact BenQ Tech Support for information on how to get your projector upgraded to the latest firmware.

Regards, Felix Pimentel Sr. Product Marketing Manager BenQ
Kazuya Posted Jan 6, 2016 7:30 PM PST
Is this projector able to be used with a curved screen?
Gabriel Posted Jan 11, 2016 9:02 AM PST
So the Frame Interpolation is not able to give the same effect as using SVP (Smooth Video Project) software in my HTPC? I want it to look more like Hobbit 48fps but also need it to be able to do this for 3D not only 2D as for 2D I can already do it with my HTPC. This will be a main factor for me. BTW ..."without imparting any hint of undesirable digital video effect (or soap opera hyper-reality" undesirable to you. Others prefer things to be smooth like real life not a slideshot fest like current 24fps movies but to each its own.
jaxon Posted Jan 15, 2016 6:00 AM PST
Hey Mate is there one for the 1070 as It lags a fair bit when I online game.

Kind regards

J Avery
Erik Herman Posted Mar 26, 2016 6:23 AM PST
Any word on how much the new firmware version reduces lag time? How does one upgrade the firmware on the projector (do you need to send it to them?) Thanks. Trying to decide between the 3050 and 4050. The motion and pixel enhancers of the 4050 have me leaning that way.
jordanliaw Posted Jun 5, 2016 10:51 PM PST
Will HT4050 support 1080p@60Hz input and convert it to 1080p@120Hz output whth Motion ehancer enabled, or not?
Evonimos Posted Jun 15, 2016 12:39 PM PST
Erik, I had the same questions regarding the lag time improvement of the Benq HT4050/W3000 with the firmware update. I am interested in that specific model mostly because of its longer throw compared to the otherwise exellent value-for-money HT2050/W1110. I don't find frame fnterpolation or image proccesing appealing for my purposes. Quite on the contrary, I am a firm believer that a good source material (as is a film in 1080p through HDMI) is always better with image proccessing turned off or set to minimum. Matters of opinion I know..

Anyway, I called Benq technical support (UK) and asked them to confirm that such update is indeed available. The guy I talked to was kind enough to inform me that such a firmware update does exist and it improves imput lag time among other things. According to him, the input lag was brought down to about 33-49 milliseconds if i remember correctly. Someone else could call them and double check if i remember the right figures and report back. Or even better, a proffesional reviewer could test it and put an end to all speculation.

I also asked him if the update procedure could be made bu the end user and he replied that it is only possible if the unit is sent to Benq technical support. The reason he said, is that they don't want to risk people damagint their units in the proccess. He also told me that the latest firmware update was released somewhere during April and it has the firmware number 0.23.

Best regards!

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