Review Summary

The BenQ MX550E is a reasonably priced DLP projector with excellent performance. It kicks out a 3,600-lumen brightness suitable for bright, naturally-lit lit rooms, and the XGA resolution (4:3 aspect ratio with an equivalent resolution to 1024×768) is suited to large screens, displaying vibrant images. It has an ultra-short throw ratio of 1.96-2.15, making it suited to rooms with limited space.


The DLP (Digital Light Processing) projector market is fiercely contested, with brightness, resolution and contrast the most important specifications. DLP projectors are cheaper than LED projectors, and while they lack their sharpness, they have better contrast and are more portable, giving them several advantages.

The MX550E sits at the budget end of the DLP projector scale, yet it packs specifications usually found in more expensive projectors.

For example, we have 3,600 ANSI lumens and a 20,000:1 contrast ratio, ensuring that images are perfectly detailed. It also has a SmartEco mode, saving lamp power up to 70% without impacting image quality.

Usability and features

The MX550E has 3D, Bright, Infographic, Presentation, sRGB, User 1, and User 2 picture modes, with User modes being customisable. Each mode tunes the image to the intended media, ensuring a high-quality image with no faff.

The display colour is 30 bits (over one billion colours), and the native resolution is XGA 1024×768. Although not the highest resolution, it produces detail well, and the high contrast ratio enhances dark sources.

With a 1.96-2.15 throw ratio, the MX550E is ideal for small spaces and can be mounted on the wall, ceiling or table. It’s quiet in operation, emitting only 29dB, and it doesn’t get hot with a maximum operating temperature of 40℃.

It’s suitable for screens up to around 100” and has 1.1x zoom, letting you tune the image to different audiences and room sizes.

The interface includes HDMI ports, USB Type Mini B, composite video in, monitor out, PC in and RS232 in, providing many connectivity options.

You get an impressive five-year warranty on parts and labour with a three-year warranty on the lamp. Eco mode achieves up to 10,000 hours from the lamp, while LampSave mode achieves up to 15,000 hours and normal mode 5,000 hours.

The verdict

The BenQ MX550E covers the basics well with good brightness, contrast and resolution. If you want an affordable, simple DLP projector, look no further. We highly recommend it to schools and businesses, and you can buy it here.