The BenQ TK800M packs the luxuries of a personal theater into a compact and competitively priced package with 4K HDR capabilities. This model gets a bump in brightness levels to make it usable even for outdoors, plus to help colors and images pop in HDR. DLP projectors aren’t exactly cheap despite the massive price reductions over time, but is it worth spending for the BenQ TK800M?
BenQ TK800M Specifications
- Resolution:3840 x 2160 4K UHD
- Clear Image Size 60” – 200” (300” Max)
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9 Native
- Response Time: 1ms
- Contrast Ratio: 10000:1
- Brightness: 3000Lumens
- Built-inSpeakers:Yes (5 Watts x 1)
- Stand: Height – No
- Stand: Tilt – Yes
- Stand: Swivel – No
- Connectivity: HDMI x 2,VGA x 1, USB 2.0 x 1, USB Mini x 1, 5mm Audio Jack x 2, 12v trigger x 1
- Dimensions with Stand(WxHxD): 9” x 5.31” x 10.71”
- Weight: 9.2 lbs
Design and Features
The BenQ TK800M sports a playful aesthetic composed of a curved white chassis with a powder blue faceplate. The device is smaller than many typical projectors, plus it only weighs in at a little over nine pounds. This design makes the model easy to transport, whether if you are bringing it to a party or just setting it up in your patio or garage.
Setup is easy as long as you have a flat surface to rest the BenQ TK800M on, but that will be too low for most silkscreen setups. Thankfully, there is a pair of adjustable feet at the bottom and an adjustable foot at the front to help you adjust the image height. Once you’ve secured your desired angle, its pretty much straightforward from there.
You can also opt for ceiling mounts with the BenQ TK800M if you are building a personal theater around it. There are three M4-sized screw points at the bottom which should be sufficient in securing the device. The lightweight nature of the projector is excellent to have at this point since you don’t have to overbuild the mount for it.
The control panel on top of the BenQ TK800M includes OSD navigation buttons, LED indicators, and a dedicated power button. Frankly, we prefer the joysticks included on high-quality monitors we’ve reviewed. However, all of the TK800M’s features are also available via the included remote, so users may never need to touch this layout at all.
The lens of the BenQ TK800M has two wheels which function for zoom and focus. The zoom ratio is limited to 1.1x, while the 1.50-1.65 throw ratio signifies that the device needs to be at least ten or eleven feet away from your screen to be able to cover a 100-inch diagonal area. This model works best in medium to large-sized rooms, so be sure to check your area before buying.
One limitation on the BenQ TK800M is it doesn’t have the ability to shift the lens in case you want to align the output. Desk placement isn’t an issue, but you need to double-check the angles before securing this gadget to its ceiling mount. You can use the TK800M’s keystone correction, but we wouldn’t recommend it as it can induce imaging issues.
The I/O panel on the BenQ TK800M includes a VGA connector for laptops and computers and two HDMI slots for your video devices. One runs HDCP 2.2 while the second slot is limited to 1.4a. A USB 2.0 slot and a mini USB type B are also included, along with a pair of 3.5mm audio jacks for input and output.
Take note that you will need active HDMI cables if you are running them across the room due to bandwidth limitations. 4K HDR takes up a lot of bandwidth, so we recommend limiting the HDMI wire length.
There is also an impressively loud 5-watt speaker on the BenQ TK800M which has sufficient detail to make dialogue understandable. However, it starts to garble or distort at higher levels, plus it lacks the punchy or resounding bass response that is suited to a projector. We recommend going with a home theater setup or a high-quality soundbar to get the best experience.
Display and Performance
The BenQ TK800M offers 4K HDR capabilities and a high-brightness maximum of 3000 lumens to create its vivid and clear picture. The device advertises 30-bit color support, and a 10000:1 contrast ratio. This model also includes several modes for different entertainment genres such as sports.
The BenQ TK800M is powered by a 240-Watt lamp that supports four modes which also affects its lifespan. The four modes listed are Normal, SmartEco, Economic, and LampSave which have varying outputs. BenQ says that the bulb will last between 4000 hours, 8000 hours, 10000 hours, and 15 hours respectively for each of these modes.
However, anything under the Normal mode isn’t ideal if you want to enjoy 4K HDR movies or games. The contrast and image quality suffer from noticeable penalties as soon as you switch to SmartEco mode, but SDR content isn’t that much affected. We recommend using the Normal mode sparingly or if you are playing HDR content, especially since a genuine replacement lamp from BenQ will cost $249.
The BenQ TK800M looks oversaturated when watching SDR content, especially in the primary colors. Some scenes looked a bit greenish while others had a gentle hint of warmth, but the high contrast ratio creates an impressive 2.2 gamma and decent grayscale tracking. But on the other hand, the DLP projector covers 98.5% of the Rec. 709 gamut which results in eye-popping vibrancy.
HDR content looks considerably better compared to SDR on the BenQ TK800M which is its primary purpose. Color accuracy sports visible improvements, lowering the average Delta E to a more acceptable 3.7 compared to around 4.8 in SDR. Contrast also gets a nice bump since HDR mode gets to utilize the high brightness threshold of the lamp in this projector.
The BenQ TK800M is considerably brighter than its closest competitors, so it has the advantage when it comes to shades and shadows. It’s even bright enough for outdoor use, although we still recommend indoors with closed doors and curtains to enjoy its full capabilities.
Gaming is another excellent use of the BenQ TK800M which makes immersive titles such as The Witcher 3 or AC Odyssey much more compelling. The extra pop in colors makes scenes lusher, while the contrast takes care of clean separations between well-lit and dim areas. However, competitive games such as CSGO or Apex Legends are out due to the 46ms input lag which adds a hit to responsiveness.
Thoughts on the BenQ TK800M
The BenQ TK800M strikes a beautiful balance between practicality and capabilities. This model is considerably cheaper than laser projectors, but its performance in 4K HDR movies or games is comparable up to a certain degree. The winning factor in this product is its very high brightness threshold which boosts contrasts and vibrancy compared to what a typical projector can do.
Monitors and TVs are still better for gaming, but take note that the BenQ TK800M’s input lag score is in the upper limits for projectors. We highly recommend this model if you are shopping for an entertainment all-arounder that does 4K HDR extremely well at a reasonable price.
About the Author:
Paolo is a gaming veteran since the golden days of Doom and Warcraft and has been building gaming systems for family, friends, and colleagues since his junior high years. High-performance monitors are one of his fixations and he believes that it’s every citizen’s right to enjoy one. He has gone through several pieces of hardware in pursuit of every bit of performance gain, much to the dismay of his wallet. He now works with Monitornerds to scrutinize the latest gear to create reviews which accentuate the seldom explained aspects of a PC monitor.