Choosing the right projector for your household can be a complex experience. Even if you’ve had a projector in your home for a long time, finding the right one to follow up with generally means a lot of research to compare the quality, longevity and other features of the projector.
The great thing is this BenQ HT3550 review is going to make it easier for you to decide whether or not this is the projector for you. So, let’s dive into who is going to get the most out of this projector, and just what it has that you’re looking for.
Who is it for?
The BenQ HT3550 is designed for those who want to have the best movie watching experience. That’s because it’s a 4K HDR projector. Not only that but it has even better cinematic aspects than you’ll find with just about any other projector. That’s where you’re really going to get your value for the money. You’ve heard of getting music that sounds just like the producer intended, well this is getting video just the way the director intended. So, this is a projector designed for those who want the best of the best.
When it comes to the features you always want to know what your projector is going to do for you. After all, there are hundreds (or probably thousands) of different projectors out there. So what makes this one so special? Well, we’re going to talk about the most popular features and the things that you definitely want to know before you make your decision.
If you’re looking for high quality this is where you can find it. 4K HDR means that you’re going to have extremely strong dynamic range. In fact, this is one of the best types of dynamic range that you can get at this point and it makes sure your projector has a wider range of colors, which creates a far more realistic image on the screen. Other aspects of the BenQ HT3550 help to refine the features that you get from this.
Cinematic Color Technology
Here you’re getting the DCI-P3 color space. This is one of the latest forms of technology when it comes to the colors available, and gives you a larger visible spectrum than you can get with the older Rec. 709. Not only that but it has a higher level of native ANSI contrast ratio and it provides you with ISFccc certified calibration, which we’ll talk about a little bit more in a minute. Overall, this type of technology ensures the best image and detail.
Enhanced Color Mapping
Color mapping refers to the way that your projector will showcase variance in colors and while you’re probably used to seeing some great detail, you haven’t seen anything like this. It’s designed to avoid biasing different color temperatures or over-saturating colors. It does this by providing the most precise level of color rendition currently available, so you get a very realistic and lifelike image projected every single time.
Factory Calibrated Color Accuracy
Unlike some projectors that you have to take care of tuning and calibrating for yourself, this one is calibrated in the factory. That means you don’t have to worry about anything when you unpack it and want to start watching that first movie. You can just set it up and go because the company uses special tools to ensure precise color temperature, black level, neutral grey, RGBCMY color tracking, hue and saturation, brightness, output and more.
ISFccc Certified Visual Calibration
Next up, the ISFccc Certified Visual Calibration means that this projector has customization options that fit any space and it also has pre-set modes that you can use for day and night. In fact, there are specified light balances for each of these times of day so you don’t have to worry about too much brightness getting into the room (or the room getting too dark if you decide to shut off all the lights and the curtains). Instead, the projector itself takes care of adjusting to what you need.
HDR-PRO Tone Mapping
This technology only continues to improve upon what you can expect from the 4K HDR on its own. That’s because it’s designed to provide even greater contrast, which makes sure that your 4K videos are going to have even better detail than you’ve ever seen before. This feature is designed to make sure that you’re getting the full cinema experience without having to actually go to the cinema to do it. This is especially important with details that occur in dark areas of the screen, providing even better detail.
Optimized Movie Modes
There are specific modes included that are already preset and ready for watching in different areas. That means if you’re watching in a dark space or you’re watching somewhere with a bit more light you’re not going to have a problem getting the full movie experience (or the full cinema experience if that’s what you’re going for). Different modes are ideal for different types of movies as well, so you get the best your movie can handle.
Authentic Movie Motion
Have you ever had juddering in a projector when you were watching anything? The BenQ HT3550 doesn’t have that because it supports up to 24 frames per second. That means it doesn’t give you juddering even in HDR mode. You’ll get the right cadence for all of your movies and you won’t need to worry about pulldowns or any type of distortion while you’re at it. That makes for a much better movie watching experience.
High Quality Pixel Points
You’ll have a total of 8.3 million pixels in each frame that you watch, which is where you’re going to get even more of the detail that you’re looking for. Because each of these pixels are completely distinct there’s no worry about blurry frames or blurred out parts of the frame. This is going to contribute to the overall quality of the colors you get and the detail that comes with every image.
Sleek and Compact Projector Size
You don’t want anything that’s going to be too big and bulky and that’s not something you have to worry about with this projector. That’s because it’s designed to look sleek and stylish but, even more importantly, it’s designed to give you a small frame. This makes it easy for you to set up on a stand or to attach to the ceiling or wall without having to make a whole lot of space. Even if you’re upgrading from a different projector in this line you shouldn’t have a problem putting this one in the same place.
10-Element Lens Array
High resolution can be hard to find, but with the 10-element lens array here you’re not going to have that kind of problem. That’s because it’s designed into specialized groups that provide the right level of light penetration. This is also where you’re going to get a lot of sharpness, color quality and clarity throughout. The lens array is made with metal barrels and cell framework, which is what makes it so much better than any 1080p projector you might have tried.
Cinema Master Video+
You want your movie room to be just like a movie theater, and that’s what Cinema Master Video+ is going to do. It’s considered video enhancing, which it does through a 4K pixel enhancer and it also has a motion enhancer that can get rid of some of the lag you might get with other projectors and systems. Plus, you can add in the color enhancer, which gives you even more saturation for different colors, including hues and gradients. Finish it off with better flesh tones as well and you’re really off and running.
Cinema Master Audio+2
Always having the best possible sound is a great benefit too. After all, you want to make sure that you can hear everything that’s happening in your favorite movies. With this projector you get a 10-watt audio, which gives you the most clarity of sound. You might even hear things that you haven’t before in your favorite movies. With this technology you’re getting exclusive algorithms that are designed just for the BenQ brand. That means the quality that the original director intended the movie to have.
Flexible Screen Alignment
Being able to watch your movie wherever and however you want is another important feature, and that comes with the flexible screen alignment. With the BenQ HT3550 projector you can get just about any size that you want with 1.3x zoom and a very short throw. That means you don’t have to set it up too far away from the wall or screen that you’re projecting on in order to get a large image that will completely fill up your space.
Easy Integrated Zoom
The zoom features are all integrated right into the system, so you can adjust for the screen size you want quickly and easily, plus, it does most of it automatically for you. That’s because you get to set the focus adjustments and it will optimize the zoom ratio to make sure you’re getting the right quality to go along with it. That way, you’re not going to miss out on anything and you’re going to have the freedom to enjoy your movie.
The BenQ HT3550 has vertical keystone function, which means that you’re going to have a square image rather than the trapezoid that you can get from other projectors. That means your projector can be placed however you want it to be without you having to worry about what it’s going to do to the end product or the screen that you’re using it with.
Getting your projector connected to your favorite movies shouldn’t be a difficult process, and that’s definitely not the case here. In fact, you can connect via a data transfer on USB type A or you can send content without the need for any type of cables. From there, you can use anything from video and audio to even picture files. So no matter what you need to use the projector for you’re going to find options are available.
Finally, the maintenance you’re going to need over time is extremely simple. All you need to do is let it go because it’s going to set up USB upgrades with no problem. You’ll be able to keep watching everything you want without having to worry about how it will work.
Pros & Cons
When it comes to the pros & cons, there are a number of things you’re going to want to know. Of course, all of the things we talked about above are going to be some great pros, but there are a few drawbacks that we felt might be worth mentioning. No product is ever perfect, after all. The cons might not be a big deal to you but you get to decide that for yourself.
- Every feature listed above
- 3-year warranty
- Default settings for viewing are not as high quality
- Input lag can be extensive
- Not ideal for those intending to use for gaming
- Brightest preset mode shows green bias
- Image in 3D is not as bright as 2D modes
If you’re not quite sure the BenQ HT3550 is the right option for you, there are always other options out there. Right here you can find some quality options that will give you a little bit higher end and a little bit lower end, assuming budget is a big factor in your decision-making process.
If you’re still looking for the same brand but maybe something a little better on the budget then the BenQ TK800 is a great way to go. You’ll be able to save money and still get a number of the great features. You get 92% Rec. 709 color as well as 3000 lumens of ambient light. On top of that, this is still a 4K projector with HDR and UHD. That’s not the only thing though, because you’re going to get the same 8.3 million pixels per frame and the Cinema Master Audio +2. Overall, that’s going to mean some great video quality as well as audio quality for anyone who’s interested in movies.
Now, you’re not going to have quite as much of the color spectrum with this option, which can be a little disappointing, but it’s going to still be great for the price point. Have a lower contrast ratio and lower zoom. Another downside is the throw ratio, which is higher, and the fact that your HDMI connections aren’t going to be quite the same. Still, you’re going to have some great features and for this price you’re definitely going to be getting what you would expect and more. Read our full BenQ TK800 review here.
If budget isn’t a huge deal for you and you’re willing to spend more for more features, the Sony VPL-VW295ES can be a solid option for you.
It’s designed with 1,500 lumens to give you great brightness and also has the 4K HDR technology you would expect, plus 3 SXRD imagers. The sleek size and the triluminos display mean that you’re going to get extremely high quality and something that you can definitely expect to work for anything, from movies to gaming.
You’ll have IMAX options with this and you’ll also have lifelike motions and upscalers to give you enhanced quality. Overall, the only downside to this unit is going to be the price that you pay for it. You’re going to get a whole lot of everything otherwise and you’re definitely going to be more than happy with the way that it seems almost intuitive to exactly what you want and when you want it. So there’s a lot going on here.
Overall, you’re going to find a number of great benefits with this projector. It has a whole lot of features and it actually makes a great impression, especially at the price point. As far as we’re concerned, this is definitely a piece you’re not going to want to miss and it’s going to make sure that your game nights or movie nights or just regular watching are going to be better than you might have expected and hopefully this BenQ HT3550 review will help you to know that.