Home Entertainment BenQ: X12000 is world's first DLP 4K UHD LED home projector

BenQ: X12000 is world's first DLP 4K UHD LED home projector

Billed as "the ultimate digital home cinema projector", the Benq X12000 combines true 4K UHD resolution, high brightness and a wide colour gamut.

The Benq X12000 projector combines the wide-gamut high-brightness output from Philips ColorSpark HLD LEDs with CinematicColor technology to accurately produce the DCI-P3 colour space as seen in commercial DLP digital cinemas including Imax theatres.

The ColorSpark LEDs generate green light that is four times brighter than conventional green LEDs. Together with high-brightness red and blue LEDs, this results in 2200 lumens of brightness making the X12000 usable in well-lit rooms. Yet the lamp is good for 20,000 hours in regular mode or 30,000 in eco mode, said Benq regional sales manager Matt Walker, while LED technology means instant on/off operation.

These features combine with an advanced 4K UHD DLP (digital light processing) chip with 3840 x 2160 pixels giving true 8.3-million pixel 4K UHD resolution. The use of a single DLP chip avoids colour convergence issues.

The 14-element low-dispersion optical system provides 1.5x zoom (so the projector can be between 3.03 and 4.56m from a 100-inch screen) with horizontal and vertical lens shift up to 27% of screen width and 65% of screen height.

An optional anamorphic lens can be fitted to provide the cinematic 2.35:1 screen ratio.

Benq X12000 glamour

With a recommended retail price of $9999, the X12000 is available now, but only though selected resellers. "It's not a mass distribution product for us," said Walker, but he pointed out that this price meant a 4K home cinema based on the X12000 cost around $16,000 fully installed, approximately $5000 cheaper than one from its closest competitor.

Managing director Martin Moelle noted that at this stage global demand for the X12000 exceeded supply, and so the local operation was not getting as many units as it could sell. But he hinted that in the longer term the projector may become more widely available.

Benq used the X12000 launch event to preview its forthcoming GS1 "camping projector." Weighing 1kg including a three-hour battery, the GS1 projects a 60in image at a range of 1m, playing content from USB 2 or 3 flash drives or streamed via Wi-Fi.

Subject to the necessary approvals, the GS1 is slated for a mid-year debut in Australia.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.