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BenQ HT1070A Review

A stellar mid-tier option with great picture quality and a relatively modest cost
Best Buy Award
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Price:   $650 List | $610 at Amazon
Pros:  Impressive image quality, accurate colors, high resolution
Cons:  Low brightness, tiny remote control
Manufacturer:   BenQ
By Max Mutter and Steven Tata  ⋅  Aug 3, 2018
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65
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 12
  • Image Quality - 45% 7
  • Ease of Use - 25% 6
  • Brightness - 15% 4
  • Fan Noise - 15% 8

Our Verdict

The BenQ HT1070A was one of the best home theater projectors that we tested. It stood out for its strong performance and relatively low price amongst other top scorers. It is by no means a shoe-string budget model, yet still stands up to much more expensive projectors in image quality. It also often sells for significantly less than its list price, making it a more attractive option for budding home theater enthusiasts. This combination of a relatively reasonable price and high end performance earned it a Best Buy Award. Although it doesn't have the same lavish features as the top scoring models, the HT1070A is still competitive in that regard, offering almost everything you could want form a home theater projector. If you're looking for absolute top-notch performance and are willing to pay for it then the BenQ HT2050A is a better option.


Compare to Similar Products

 
This Product
BenQ HT1070A
Awards Best Buy Award Editors' Choice Award  Top Pick Award  
Price $650 List
$609.55 at Amazon
$800 List
$739.99 at Amazon
$900 List
$699.99 at Amazon
$800 List
$749.99 at Amazon
$600 List
Star Rating
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Pros Impressive image quality, accurate colors, high resolutionGreat image quality, vibrant colors, full HDVery good image quality, good color accuracy, full HDCrystal clear text, portable, bright lamp, full HDGood image quality, full HD
Cons Low brightness, tiny remote controlDim lamp, not ideal for well lit roomsDim lamp, not ideal for well-lit roomsNot the best cinematic image qualityWeak zoom, not very bright
Bottom Line A stellar mid-tier option with great picture quality and a relatively modest costExcellent image quality and a whisper quiet fan, a fantastic home theater optionA great home theater machine, but not quite as good as the Editors' ChoicePerfect business presentations, particularly if you want something that you can travel withGood image quality and a fairly quiet fan, can function well in a home theater setting
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Rating Categories BenQ HT1070A BenQ HT2050A Epson Home Cinema... Epson Pro EX9220 Optoma HD27
Image Quality (45%)
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
0
7
Ease Of Use (25%)
10
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6
10
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7
10
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7
10
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7
10
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6
Brightness (15%)
10
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4
10
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4
10
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6
10
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8
10
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4
Fan Noise (15%)
10
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8
10
0
9
10
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6
10
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5
10
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6
Specs BenQ HT1070A BenQ HT2050A Epson Home Cinema... Epson Pro EX9220 Optoma HD27
Projection Technology DLP DLP 3LCD 3LCD DLP
Specification Brightness 2200 Lumens 2200 Lumens 2500 Lumens 3600 Lumens 3200 Lumens
Measured Brightness 1496 Lumens 1548 Lumens 1943 Lumens 2701 Lumens 1102 Lumens
Maximum Resolution 1080p 1080p 1080p 1920 x 1200 1080p
Contrast Ratio 15000:1 15000:1 60000:1 15000:1 25000:1
Apect Ratio Native 16:9 Native 16:9 Native 16:9 Native 16:10 Native 16:9
Zoom Ratio 1.0- 1.2 1.0- 1.3 1.0- 1.6 1.0- 1.2 1.0-1.1
Throw Ratio (wide to zoom) 1.37 - 1.64 1.15 to 1.5 1.33 to 2.16 1.50 - 1.71 1.48 - 1.61
Backlit Remote No Yes No No Yes
Vertical Keystoning Correciton Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Horizontal Keystoning Correciton No Yes Yes Yes No
Lens Shift No Yes No No No
Dimensions 13.1" x 3.9" x 9.5" 15" x 4.8" x 11" 12.2" x 11.2" x 4.8" 11.9" x 9.9" x 3.6" 11.7" x 9" x 3.7"
Weight (pounds) 5.6 7.3 7.7 6.2 5.2
Warranty 1 Year Limited 1 Year Limited 2 Year Limited 2 Year Limited 1 Year Limited
Lens Cover No Yes Yes Yes Yes
3D Capable Yes Yes Yes No Yes

Our Analysis and Test Results

Providing high end image quality with a low price tag, the BenQ HT1070A is a realtively inexpensive way to get your home theater rig off the ground. It does have some image quality drawbacks when compared to more expensive models, but they are minor and will be well worth the big savings for many people.


Performance Comparison


The BenQ HT1070A was near the top of our scoresheets for all of the individual tests we conducted. Read on below to see exactly how it stacked up against the competition.

Image Quality


In our image quality testing, the HT1070A earned a score of 7 out of 10, putting it just below the top scorers. It was slightly better than the comparably priced Optoma HD27 because of superior color accuracy and picture modes. Between the two models, the BenQ is a much stronger overall performer. We found the HT1070A to be an excellent model for home theater use, where it produced a wide range of impressively accurate colors. It was especially good at displaying dark colors, which tend to be a bit washed out by most projectors.


The BenQ HT1070A feels like a budget version of the Editors' Choice award-winning HT2050A with slightly downgraded image quality and fewer features. Both models feature 1080p resolution, 15,000:1 contrast ratios, and 16:9 native aspect ratios. We measured the HT1070A's brightness to be slightly lower than the HT2050A's, which doesn't make much of a difference for use in dark rooms.


Ease of Use


Like other models made by BenQ, the HT1070A is incredibly easy to use and it earned an average score of 6 in our ease of use testing. The interface is very user-friendly and it lost points for not being very portable. It weighs 5.6 pounds but is bulky and doesn't have a rectangular shape, making it slightly more difficult to fit into a backpack or carrying bag.



We especially liked that its three feet are adjustable, making it possible to perfectly fine-tune the image to fit your screen. There is no lens shift, which is present in more expensive models, but most users won't miss this feature. The focus and zoom knobs felt good for making tiny adjustments and we were always able to dial in a crisp picture. The zoom ratio of 1.2x was easy to work with and works well in most home settings, where the projector will be roughly ten feet from its screen.


BenQ's menus are easy to navigate but we weren't impressed with the tiny size of the HT1070A's remote. It is functional but not nearly as nice as the full-sized backlit remote of the HT2050A. We didn't score sound quality, but the speakers in the projector are virtually useless and external speakers or a soundbar are necessary to match its image quality.

Brightness


We measured a maximum brightness of 1496 Lumens for the HT1070A, making it one of the dimmest projectors in our review. BenQ lists a specified brightness of 2200 Lumens, significantly higher than what we measured in multiple trials. Even though it only earned a score of 4 out of 10 in this metric it is still plenty bright for home theater use in a dark room.


The HT1070A tends to wash out some areas more than the HT2050A (look at the face of the man on the far right)  but otherwise produces an excellent image.
The HT1070A tends to wash out some areas more than the HT2050A (look at the face of the man on the far right), but otherwise produces an excellent image.

The HT1070A is best-suited for watching movies and television in dark rooms. Its low brightness makes it a poor choice for presentations, especially if there is ambient light. This is fine for most users, who generally watch television in the evening when ambient light is not an issue. It would work fine for the occasional slideshow but if your primary use will be presentations then you're better off with the Epson Pro EX9220 or more affordable Epson VS250.

Fan Noise


The HT1070A's fan was very quiet and we didn't find it to be distracting in our tests. It scored an 8 in this rating metric, making it one of the top models for quiet operation. Its fan is just slightly louder than that of the HT2050A, but it's still quiet enough that we barely noticed it. Just remember that this projector's built-in speaker is also very quiet, so even with the quiet fan you're definitely going to want to use an external audio source when watching movies.


Unless the room temperature is especially hot (~90 degrees F), the projector's fan stays very quiet and isn't noticeable when an external speaker is used. Fan noise can substantially detract from the viewing experience and we found the HT1070A to be one of the quietest models.

Value


The BenQ HT1070A has a higher than average cost but is still cheaper than most of the top scoring models. Dollar for dollar, this is an excellent projector for home theater use and is far better than most comparably-priced models in our review. It's the best mid-range model for people who want a projector to watch movies and television.


Conclusion


Overall the BenQ HT1070A is an excellent choice for those who are seeking to maximize performance per dollar in their home theater projector purchase. It's one of the best mid-range models out there and its image quality was comparable to much more expensive competitors. If you're looking for a presentation projector then the Epson Pro EX9220 is a better option.


Max Mutter and Steven Tata