QUICK SUMMARY: I sent an e-mail to someone at BenQ Europe to ask when the TK850 would be available in Germany. Was told "first quarter of 2020". That's not really new info, and I have no idea if this guy knew what he was talking about, but I figured I would share.
I'll start with a quick note about my projector "history"...
Many of my friends own projectors and they rave about them. Since I've never had a dedicated home theater room I figured a projector made zero sense. To be honest, I didn't get the "hype". It's just a way to get a dimmer, worse, picture right?
My wife and I moved from the US to Berlin Germany two years ago and our bedroom doesn't have space for a television. So I set up a kind of crude shelf that essentially rests on the headboard, and I brought home a super cheat projector (~49 euros) so we could "occasionally" watch TV or movies before bed.
My wife, who is home all day, loved it!
It was a cheap projector, kind of dim, and pretty noisy, so I went out and bought a ~400 euro Acer (720p). It was awesome! We used this projector EVERY DAY and started ignoring our living room television in the evenings. My wife even used it during the day. In fact, she used it so much that in 18 months the bulb started flickering and I think it was ready for a replacement.
Instead of spending ~200 euros on a new bulb, and since we had become projector lovers, I upgraded to a 4K unit. We started with the PX-747 and it was a huge difference! Unfortunately, it crashed every morning when we turned it on, so we had to return it. Then I bought an Optoma 350x and in a dark room the picture was even better than the PX-747!! We were blown away. Unfortunately, it made a very annoying hum sound. (Much louder than the Viewsonic.) An even bigger problem was that it only looked great in a dark room. That's not a huge issue at this time of year, but in the summertime it can get very hot in Berlin and we HAVE to leave the windows open, with no blinds down. This projector would be unwatchable for most of the summer.
Another thing we loved about the new Optoma, which we didn't even think about before, was that it had a different throw compared to our other projectors. We suddenly had a 100 inch screen on our wall, which is absolutely perfect for the space we have.
Yesterday, I returned the Optoma and set the Acer back up. I've been doing tons of research on projectors and I realized that I only wanted/needed a few things:
- 300+ lumens
- a 100 inch screen from 8.5 feet
- bulb life of 10,000 hours or more (in eco mode)
- decent colors/contrast for a "home theater" (no classroom-style projectors)
- reasonably quiet, since the projector is inches from our heads
I was about to order the BenQ TH683 (1080p) (which checks most, but not all, of the boxes above), when I heard about the TK850. Holy smokes. I don't know about the noise part, but this projector sounds absolutely PERFECT for us. The only problem is, I have no idea when it will be released in Germany. For now I've decided to wait, but we are back to the Acer, with the small screen and the flickering bulb which may be going out soon. Wish I had more info about the 850. :-(
A few days ago I sent a message to BenQ Europe to ask about release dates. Was told: "We hope to release it in Germany in the 'first quarter' of 2020." That's kind of vague, plus I have no idea if this guy knows anything about release dates. I have found that salesmen can be really clueless about these sorts of things. (Or maybe they are told not to commit to anything...) Anyway, sorry this was so long. Just wanted to share.