Review: BenQ GS1

Watch movies wherever you want

BenQ GS1 is a Columbi egg of a projector, which makes it possible to take the great movie experiences out into the world.

BenQ GS1
Published 2020-09-12 - 5:00 pm
Our opinion
Takes up less space than even a small TV, but provides a great image with a short projector distance. Can play directly from USB key or Android mobile, thanks to built-in Android media player.
It costs like a full-fledged projector. It is not possible to play all types of movies, and a mouse and keyboard are often required. The brightness is limited - but hey, it can run for three hours on batteries!
  • Brightness / contrast: 300 Lumens / 100,000: 1
  • Resolution: 1280 x 720
  • Image size: 60-200 “(1-3.5 m)
  • Throw ratio: 0.8
  • Inputs: HDMI / MHL, USB3.0, USB 2.0, micro-SD
  • Sound: 2 x 2 w speaker, headphone output
  • Wireless: Wi-Fi (dual-band), Miracast, Bluetooth
  • Battery life: 3 h
  • Dimensions and weight: 146 x 65.7 x 139.2 mm / 970 g with battery

The BenQ GS1 is not in pocket format, but still compact enough to carry in your luggage on your holiday trip. With the battery pack fitted, it is the size of a lunch box. On the front is the short-throw type lens, which can project a 60-inch image from just one meter away. At the top you will find buttons for operation (the same as on the remote control). The back is well equipped: HDMI input, two USB ports, audio output and a microSD card reader.

The brightness is a maximum of 300 lumens. It is just enough for indoor use in the caravan, in the hotel room or under the open night sky with a stretched sheet as a movie screen

The battery lasts up to three hours, making the projector a bit more bulky. Photo: BenQ


Built-in computer

In addition to the physical connections, the GS1 is equipped with Wifi and Bluetooth. An Android-based media player is hiding in the box office. If you want great sound for the movie, you can connect a Bluetooth speaker. In the same way, you can connect a mouse and keyboard, and in practice get a complete computer. The media player supports most common video and audio formats, as well as PDF, PowerPoint, Excel and Word files.

As the ultimate test, we stuffed the projector in our backpack, and took it out into the warm May evening to enjoy Rogue One in the open air. A JBL Xtreme wireless speaker ensures noise and crashes on the banks of the Akerselva. Ok, brightness is less than at home, the canvas flutters in the wind, and you are eaten by mosquitoes. But it lasts all the way!


BenQ GS1 is a small Columbi egg of a projector. With the built-in battery pack and media player, you only need to add a screen and a video file to watch movies, wherever you want. The picture quality is good, although the brightness is somewhat modest, and thanks to its extreme portability, it almost calls for finding new ways to watch movies.

In practice, you can have an entire cinema show in a backpack. Including a Bluetooth speaker, a sheet for projection, a sixpack – and a bag of chips!

Photo: BenQ

Also in this test

Philips PicoPix PPX5110

Entry ticket to mini projectors

Philips PicoPix PPX5110 super-compact mini projector can stream video wirelessly directly from your smartphone.

The projector is very light and compact, with powerful enough sound to work in many situations. Low mechanical noise.
Low brightness requires a dark room, and the image should be kept below 60 ". The colors seem supersaturated, with clear reddish faces.

Asus S1

Well-chosen compromise

Asus S1 has only one goal in mind: to provide the best picture quality for the money from a very compact format.

Good brightness and short throw distance make the projector usable in many contexts. Here you get a lot for your money!
The black level is limited, and what you get out of this resolution is limited. HDMI is the only connection.

Asus ZenBeam E1

Pocket cinema for the trip

The Asus ZenBeam E1 is no bigger than an old-fashioned Walkman, and it does for the home cinema what the portable cassette player once did for the stereo system.

Ultra-portable projector that can show movies and slideshows anywhere. Add an HDMI source and a white wall and you're up and running.
There really is not much brightness in it. And you miss the possibility of playback via Miracast or USB / SD media.

Philips PicoPix PPX3417W

Many tricks up its sleeve

Whether you want to watch video from your mobile, PC, memory card or USB - or even wirelessly - Philips PicoPix PPX3417W is a projector you can count on.

Most formats are supported and battery life is ok. The image quality is good, with enough brightness for most things.
The projection distance is very long, with only 24 inch image from one meter. Lots of noise from fan and color wheels.

Philips PicoPix PPX4835

Just good on paper

We were expecting more from Philips PicoPix PPX4835, especially at this price.

Good brightness is combined with high pixel resolution, and with the ability to project fairly large images.
The image is never completely sharp, and the whole thing becomes quite flat and lifeless. Color banding is also a problem, and the fan is a bit noisy.


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