REPORT: BenQ Joybee GP1
By Hannes Grundschober
Translation by Siobhan Hayes
The next generation: Benq has brought a DLP (Digital Light Processing)-based LED projector to the market which should show if it has the ability to become a favourite with the public with the Joybee GP1.
The new looker from BenQ is small and compact. We remove the tiny, elegantly attractive projector with its glossy black top and white bode from its sturdy packaging. A round sensor field with a total of nine sensors is located at the top in the middle. In the centre with a large logo is the on/off sensor.
Truly pretty and extremely small : der BenQ GP1.
Our test model came in plain cardboard packaging with some nice elements printed on it. This shell does not really match the chic designer outfit that Benq has given the model.
As well as the projector itself, the packaging contains a small case, a remote control, a huge power unit, the matching power cable and an adapter cable with flat plug for VGA connectors and cinch ports. In addition, there is the latest Version 3.0 of the "Arcsoft MediaConverter" as an interesting addition alongside the usual "Quick Start Guide".
Simple and functional: the case for the BenQ GP1.
The model has four ports: power supply, an audio output, a USB connector for USB sticks and a port for the flat plug of the adapter cable (VGA, Cinch).
After the projector is connected to the power supply, the on/off sensor field blinks expectantly in a gentle blue. A brief touch with the index finger and seconds later, the model springs to life. A small fan hums discreetly but constantly. After a few minutes, the fan then kicks in and is very noticeable in a quiet environment.
The initially blurry picture need only be adjusted quickly by hand using the focus lever and then we are ready to go.
The user simply selects the right input using the illuminated sensor field ("Source"). Contrary to what new users might assume, a selection is not confirmed with the huge button in the middle, but instead using the field on the bottom right ("Mode/Enter"). After switching the projector off accidentally the first time, we noticed this speciality of the controls and continued our test. The images saved on a USB stick (in JPG format) can be viewed when this is connected to the USB input. Here, the first noteworthy feature is uncovered – images can be turned easily and quickly. Simply push "left" or "right" and the image turns speedily into the desired position. BenQ really has not skimped when it comes to the CPU performance. It is possible to pause the slideshow ("Mode/Enter"); the user can click through individual pictures using the "up" and "down" sensors.
However, since images are initially stored on SD cards or compact flash cards these days, we must ask: how can these images be projected as quickly as possible onto the wall? In our test, this was not possible to a satisfactory extent directly via the PC without any diversion. A card reader (= many card slots) is not recognised. The Fuji F40fd and Canon EOS 5D cameras used also refuse to work when connected directly to the USB port of the projector. Only a CF-USB adapter plug (a single card slot) worked.