BenQ PE7700 Home Theater Projector
Home theater projectors using the HD2+ DLP chip have been delivering excellent overall performance, including impressively high contrast. However, this performance has always cost a significant chunk of change. With the release of the BenQ PE7700, HD2+ performance drops below $3,000 for the first time, and it is quite the sight to see.
Specifications. 1100 ANSI lumens, 2500:1 contrast, native 16:9 widescreen format, 1280x720 resolution DLP chip with a 5x speed six-segment color wheel.
Compatibility. HDTV 1080i, 720p, 576p, 576i, 480p, and computer resolutions up to 1024x768. Full NTSC / PAL / SECAM.
Lens and Throw Distance. 1.37:1 manual zoom/focus lens. Throws a 100" diagonal image from 9'7" to 13', depending on zoom.
Lamp Life. 2,000 hours in "Full" mode, 3,000 hours in economy mode.
Connection Panel. One composite video, one S-Video, One set of standard YPbPr component inputs, one set of five BNC component/RGB inputs, one HDMI port (which accepts DVI-I or DVI-D with HDCP, component and RGB video), and one RS-232C port for an external control.
Installation Options. Table mount, rear shelf mount, ceiling mount.
Warranty. Three years, 90 days for lamp.
The BenQ PE7700 puts out an impressive amount of light. Rated at 1100 ANSI lumens, we were able to produce approximately 750 ANSI lumens at settings ideal for, say, a football game in the family room. At settings better suited for home theater, the PE7700 produces closer to 400 lumens, which is more than enough to light up a large screen - you can use a screen up to 120" diagonal and still get a great picture.
Lumen output on the PE7700 is highly adjustable. Changing the lamp mode from Economy to Full results in a 25% increase in lumen output, which can help combat the effects of ambient light washing out the image. Likewise, switching from "Home Theater" to "Family Room" mode delivers nearly 50% more light to the screen (with the lamp output set at Full, switching from Home Theater mode to Family Room mode took lumen output from 500 lumens to about 720 lumens). However, for best color performance and contrast, it is still advisable to darken the viewing environment as much as possible, and stick with the Economy lamp mode and the Home Theater color profile.
The PE7700 produces average brightness uniformity - on our test unit the upper left corner of the image was 33% dimmer than the center. However the rest of the screen was illuminated more evenly, and during normal viewing of films and video the reduced lumen value in one corner is barely noticeable.
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