9
Expert Rating

The BenQ W1080ST is a DLP projector aimed at the home cinema market. It brings media-focused features such as a high contrast ratio and gimmicky 3D support to the table, aiming at providing home entertainment needs above all else. It’s one of the best short throw projectors for TV, blu ray, and DVD watching, though it has some issues that prevent it from being the definitive $1299.99 buy.

Why We Like It – BenQ W1080ST

The BenQ W1080ST is a great full HD home theater projector, bringing an array of solid features at a mid-range price point. Its 3D support is gimmicky and adds unnecessary cost, but it nevertheless provides a solid media experience for a decent price.

Pros
  • Short throw lens is great for small rooms
  • High contrast ratio
  • Good multimedia experience
Cons
  • No HDR support

Performance/Resolution Etc.

Coming in at 1920×1080, the BenQ W1080ST projector is reasonably sharp. While 4K would have been nice to see, it’s an uncommon resolution at this price point, and picture quality is otherwise great. If you’ll primarily be gaming rather than watching movies, the BenQ TH671ST is a better pick, as it has low input lag, higher brightness, and a slew of gaming features all at roughly the same price point.

Brightness/Lumens

Brightness is adequate on the BenQ W1080ST. It sits at around 2,000 lumens, making it a good pick for dark or dimly lit rooms, but it will appear dim and washed out in brighter rooms. The Optoma GT1080HDR offers a brighter picture at a lower price point, alongside HDR support and a higher refresh rate, but image quality is worse; stepping up to a GT1090HDR makes more sense than stepping down to a GT1080HDR does. The Optoma UHD50X projector on the other hand is worth trying as it sits at around 3500 lumens.

Adjustability/Viewing Angle

Thanks to its middling focus, adjustability is mediocre on the BenQ W1080ST. Brightness isn’t uniform across the entire picture, and while it’s user-focusable, getting a perfectly focused picture is difficult if not impossible. Port selection is at least adequate with 2 HDMI ports, alongside 1 VGA port and 1 component input, though its lack of DisplayPort is unfortunate for PC users.

Durability

A compact frame and sturdy plastic housing make the BenQ W1080ST a durable projector as far as physicality goes. Its lamp life, however, leaves a lot to be desired, coming in at just 3,500 hours; that might seem like a lot, but anyone that intends to use it quickly risks burning it out very prematurely. BenQ’s eco mode improves lamp life a decent bit, but it’s still a low number even for a lamp-based projector. If longevity is a concern, the VAVA 4K Projector might be of interest thanks to its 25,000 hour lamp life, though it costs over twice as much.

Value

Value is the crucial selling point of the BenQ W1080ST. It comes in at a very solid price, beating out most other, cheaper value-oriented projectors, all while offering an overall solid feature set both for the price and just in general.

BenQ W1080ST Wrap-up

The BenQ W1080ST is a solid mid-range projector that’s great for media consumption. You can get decent upgrades over the W1080ST by stepping up in budget a bit, but its blend of pricing and features make it a very compelling option even when compared to its better, pricier peers. It strikes a perfect blend of quality and price, though the Optoma GT1090HDR’s price point sitting so close to the W1080ST’s price point makes the lack of HDR very unfortunate, especially when it instead touts gimmicks like 3D support.

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Brady Meyers

Brady Klinger-Meyers is a writer based in Pennsylvania. He regularly contributes to websites such as Hardcore Droid, Gamepur, and Homebli. His work remains primarily in technology, from video game journalism to consumer technology.

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