Do you have enough room to fit this into your camping setup?

I reckon you do. So stick around and check out the BenQ GS1 Portable Projector.

This projector is built specifically for portability, and with campers and travellers in mind. For example there are 5 picture modes, and one of them is “Camping” which is a unique mode formulated exclusively for GS1, perfect for the outdoor viewing where ambient light is scarce.

Now I’ve owned projectors before. They are great but have had some serious quality issues unless you’re willing to spend big bucks.

So when BenQ sent me the GS1, I was a little bit skeptical. I even said to my missus “when I review it, if this thing is crap, I am going to say it’s crap“.

Well that all changed drastically the instant I turned the device on.

This little projector is officially my favourite thing in the world.

Just as a little tester, I pointed it at a wall in my house and pressed the power button. And what appears is an actual operating system! It’s almost like a little computer.

You’re met with a home screen with links to Google, Youtube and Facebook. So my first thought was “wow, this thing has WiFi.” So I found the settings area and had the unit connected to my wifi network within about 40 seconds.

Phone App

I used the included BenQ remote control to choose YouTube. It opens YouTube in a browser window. You’re able to search by typing with the remote control. It’s a bit fiddly and time consuming to type with the remote control, so I wondered if there was an App that I can download to operate the device. Yep, there most definitely is. Not only can you type a lot quicker, but you can also slide your finger around on your phone screen to control the mouse pointer on the projector.

 

Sound Quality

While watching a video on YouTube, I realised how good quality the sound is direct from the inbuilt speaker in the GS1 unit. But I also noticed a Bluetooth section in the settings. And I own a good quality Bluetooth speaker. I went to that section and held down the “pair” button on my speaker and it paired straight away. I now have exceptional quality sound through my portable Bluetooth speaker for anything I watch through the GS1 Portable Projector.

The sound quality that comes out of the projector’s in-built speaker is quite good still. Connecting an external speaker is totally optional. I travel with my Bluetooth speaker anyway, so it’s no extra effort for me to connect it and get the superior sound quality.

Picture Quality & Portability

In my opinion, a projector will never be quite like a TV screen. Especially during the day, any projector struggles to compare.

But you aren’t going to take a big screen TV camping with you.

The beauty of the BenQ GS1 Projector is that it is PORTABLE. There are two ways in which it is portable.

  1. It’s palm-sized and less than 1KG in weight. You can fit it in with your existing camping gear without taking up valuable space.
  2. It’s got an in-built battery. That’s right, you do not need access to power! The battery last for up to three hours.

So with it’s amazing portability in mind, we can now talk about picture quality.

The GS1 is capable of delivering images as large as 60” in High definition 720p resolution at just 1 meter. The further away you move the projector away, the bigger the picture gets. You do loose quality as well as you move the projector further away, but you just need to find your happy medium of screen size vs picture quality.

The last thing I want to mention about picture quality is; use the projector at night. When there is no other lights around, especially while you are out camping the picture quality is going to be at it’s best.

I can really envisage the adults sitting around the camp fire having a few beers while the kids are sitting nearby watching Toy Story being projected up onto a white sheet hanging in a tree.

Connectivity

I was so impressed with the diversity of options the BenQ GS1 has for playing your videos.

  • USB – Weather it is an external hard drive, or a USB stick, you can load up all your favourite movies before your big camping trip.
  • HDMI – The HDMI input means you can connect almost any device from a set-top-box to your laptop computer. Last night I even connected my Playstation 4 and played Black Ops 3 for a while on the enormous screen. HDMI is great because both audio and vision travels through the one cable, not like using the red, white and yellow RCA cables.
  • Micro SD – There is even a Micro SD slot. I haven’t tested this slot, but it is great for another connection option. For example, my GoPro cameras use Micro SD. If I was out on a camping or fishing trip and something amazing happened, when I get back to camp I would want to preview the footage. I would take the Micro SD out of the GoPro and slide it straight into the GS1 Projector. As I mentioned, I haven’t tested this slot, but there is no reason why it wouldn’t work as I’ve explained.

There are other connections on the back of the unit as well as the ones mentioned above:

  • Headphones and DC IN
  • There is even a USB OUT. This means you can use the projector’s battery as a power bank! Yep, charge your phone from it.

Summary

I absolutely love the BenQ GS1 Portable Projector. It is officially my favourite bit of gear.

On a quick Google search, you can find the GS1 for sale on Dick Smith, eBay, Kogan and others for under $1,000 which I reckon is excellent value for money. It will become part of your travel and camping kit, and it will get plenty of use at home too.

 

http://www.naivenomads.com.au/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/IMG_1076-900x675.jpghttp://www.naivenomads.com.au/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/IMG_1076-140x140.jpgMikeyGear and ReviewsDo you have enough room to fit this into your camping setup? I reckon you do. So stick around and check out the BenQ GS1 Portable Projector. This projector is built specifically for portability, and with campers and travellers in mind. For example there are 5 picture modes, and one...Travelling Australia, learning things the hard way