A Portable Projector with Power: BenQ Joybee GP2

This high powered little projector has blown my mind!  It’s tiny, portable, and has all the power of its bloated predecessors.

We used it to host an impromptu gaming party at our house.  Pinning a white sheet up on the wall and projecting an Xbox 360 via the GP2 we were able to run two video games at once in my living room.  While a few people played 007 Goldeneye Reloaded on the projector, the other group played Halo Reach on the TV.

We were quite impressed with the crisp and clear image from the projector, especially since we were using a sheet as a projector screen!  The GP2 projects in full 720p HD.

I didn’t expect the tiny unit to provide any external sound so I was very surprised when I heard the Xbox load into the dashboard.  Although the external speaker is nothing special, for such a small projector I was very impressed.

 

The projector has jacks for iPhone/iPod, HDMI, PC, A/V, Audio input, and Audio output.  I had a little trouble getting my iPhone to work properly with the projector, but after plugging and unplugging it a few dozen times was able to get a slideshow to play through the projector.  Most of the time my iPhone didn’t recognize the “device” and I couldn’t get my iPhone to show up on the projectors “iOS” controls.

The projector is very unstable and only projects a 100% stable image when sitting flat.  If you use the little leg that comes with it, it throws off the balance and the projector leans hard to one side or the other.  I end up stacking some playing cards under one side to keep it stable.  I’m not impressed with this, but for something so portable you can’t really complain!

The device comes with a power cord and is a little bulky with the attached transformer.  It would have been nice to include a smaller cord, but when I jam everything into the small BenQ travel bag, it all fits.  There is an option to purchase a battery with 3 hours of life.  I have a feeling this battery while making the unit more portable would also assist in stabilizing the unit.

I tried watching a Star Trek episode off a USB stick and found the audio and video did not sync properly.  This is normal though since sometimes I run a MKV file on my media player no problem but then experience an audio/video sync issue on my downstairs TV which supports USB.  When I popped a simple video file onto a USB stick and plugged it in, I had no problem getting it to play.  I watched laying down with the video being projected onto the ceiling of my bedroom and used the headphone audio jack.

Overall I would give this projector 3.5/5 stars.  It loses 1 star for the physical instability of the unit and a half a star for the bulky power cord and battery being sold separably.  Would I buy it again?  Yes, but I think that BenQ still has a few issues to work out, so if I could wait for the next model I would do so.

 

Product Specs:

Projection System DLP
Native Resolution WXGA (1280 x 800)
Brightness* 200 ANSI lumens
Contrast Ratio 2400 : 1
Display Color 1.07 Billion Colors
Lens F=1.93, f=26.95mm
Aspect Ratio Native 16:10 (5 aspect ratio selectable)
Throw Ratio 1.13 (44” @ 1m)
Image Size (Diagonal) 20”-160”
Zoom Ratio Fixed
Lamp (Normal/Economic Mode)* LEDx3, 20,000/30,000 hours
Keystone Adjustment 1D, Vertical ± 40°
Projection Offset 100%±5%
Resolution Support VGA (640 x 480) to UXGA (1600 x 1200)
Horizontal Frequency 31~99KHz
Vertical Scan Rate 23~120Hz
Interface Computer in (D-sub 15pin) x 1 (via CEA 30 pin cable)
Composite Video in (RCA) x 1 (via CEA 30 pin cable)
HDMI (v1.3) x 1 (mini type)
Audio in (Mini Jack) x 1
Audio L/R in (RCA) x 1 (via CEA 30 pin cable)
Audio out (Mini Jack) x 1
iPod/iPhone Universal Dock x 1
Speaker 2W Stereo x 2
USB (Type A) x 1 (USB Reader)
USB (Type Mini B) x 1 (USB Display/File Transfer) Compatible with Win XP SP2 32 bit , Win Vista 32/64 bit , Win7 32/64 bit
Card Reader x 1 (SD, SDHC up to 16GB)
Internal memory 2GB (1.3 GB for user usage)
Dimensions(W x H x D) 140.3 x 52.5 x 129.8 mm (without battery)
140.3 x 93.8 x 129.8 mm (with battery)
HDTV Compatibility 480i, 480p, 576i, 576p, 720p, 1080i, 1080p
Video Compatibility NTSC, PAL, SECAM
Weight 0.56kg (1.23lbs) (without battery)
1.05kg (2.31lbs) (with battery)
Audible Noise 29/24 dBA (Normal/Economic mode)
Power Supply AC 100 to 240 V, 50/60 Hz
Power Consumption 45W/34W ( Normal/Eco) , Standby<1W
On-Screen Display Languages Arabic / Bulgarian/ Croatian/ Czech/ Danish/ Dutch/ English/ Finnish/ French/ German/ Greek/ Hungarian/ Hindi / Italian/ Indonesian/ Japanese/ Korean/ Norwegian/ Polish/ Portuguese/ Romanian/ Russian/ Simplified Chinese/Spanish/ Swedish/ Turkish/ Thai / Traditional Chinese (28 Languages)
Accessories (Standard) Remote Control w/ Battery
Carry Bag
Adapter (by region)
USB Cable
Power code
User Manual CD
Quick Start Guide
Warranty Card (by region)
CEA 30 Pin Cable
Accessories (Optional) Battery
(1) 3 hours battery life @ 100 ANSI lumens (1 hour @ 200 ANSI lumens)
(2) Battery life time : 300 cycles charging
(3) Charging time : 3.5 hours in empty condition
Multimedia Formats Supported Video:
FLV
Music:
MP3, MP2, APE, FLAC, OGG, WAV
Photo:
JPG (.jpg/.jpeg) , BMP (.bmp) , PNG (.png)
Subtitle:
MKV built-in, SRT (.srt)
Document:
Adobe PDF 1.0~1.4 (pdf), MS PowePoint 97~2010 (ppt, pptx), MS Excel 95~2010 (xls, xlsx),
MS Word 95~2010 (doc, docx), Text (txt)
*Lamp life results will vary depending on environmental conditions and usage. Actual product’s features and specifications are subject to change without notice. Projection quality and limitations may vary depending on the compatibility of the iPhone/iPod/iPad application and/or downloaded content in use.

http://shop.benq.us/ProductDetail.aspx?id=342

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About Jonathan G. Nelson

Jonathan G. Nelson is the editor-in-chief and owner of NERD TREK. He is also owner/publisher at AAW Games / AdventureAWeek.com, a tabletop gaming company based in Snoqualmie, WA. Connect with Jonathan via Facebook.