Part of BenQ's Joybee range of portable products, the GP1 is more of a micro than a pico projector – although the official name for the format is 'palm projector'
Unlike the smaller models, there's no battery power option with the GP1. This unit is mains only, and is powered by a hefty brick. So some of the more social applications of the pico units, such as displaying your video wares at parties, restaurants and trade shows, just aren't going to be practical.
On the plus side, it puts out 100 ANSI lumens, which makes it far brighter than the truly pocket-sized alternatives. It also makes it possible to double the displayed image size - 1.5m to 2m is a very practical image width, making this a realistic choice for business use.
With a native resolution of 858 x 600, the GP1 can show 720p HD video without interpolation. As with other professional models, there are panel buttons and a remote for setting up and controlling the unit. You'll need this, because there are two input sources. For live projection there's a CEA30 socket. Since you probably don't have a CEA30 video source this comes with an adaptor, which offers a set of combined VGA D-sub, composite and audio connectors at the business end.
You can also buy an optional docking cradle for use with an iPhone or iPod. For pre-recorded video playback, there's a USB socket too. Load up a standard USB memory stick with the content of your choice, plug it in here, and you're ready to display it to the world - although it would have been good to see a memory card option too.
Even with just 100 ANSI lumens the projector is completely convincing in overcast daylight, and looks very good indeed in subdued light. It struggles with ambient sunlight, but then so do many larger professional models.
The Benq GP1 is a realistic replacement for a full-sized model – with good control of colour options and auto-keystoning it’s a very effective point-and-show option for business use, and can give some of the cheaper home cinema systems a run for their money. Considering the portability factor, it has a lot going for it.