Build and Design
Out of the box, my immediate reaction to the X10-4K was how sleek it looked, with its minimalist chassis features smooth curves and grey metal surface. There are mesh grilles on either side of the projector where the Harman Kardon speakers and fans are. The flat glass front houses the all-glass lens that sits square in the centre. On the rear of the projector, you’ll see a caramel-coloured magnetic leather cover that opens halfway or detached completely to reveal all the connectivity options for the projector. Finally, a matching sturdy leather handle for ease of carrying. Underneath, there’s a foot that can offset the front depending on the angles you’re working with.
I am impressed by the overall build quality of the X10-4K. It’s solid, and looks and feels premium. Most projectors you’ll find in the market are designed simply to serve their purpose. In the case of the X10-4K, Viewsonic has managed to make it simultaneously stylish and practical – definitely meant to be displayed, and not hidden away in some dark corner.
Connectivity and Controls
As you remove the rear magnetic cover, you’ll the X10-4K’s selection of connections. There are two HDMI 2.0 inputs, plus a USB-C port for video playback when paired with compatible smartphones or tablets. There’s also a microSD card slot, a 3.5mm analogue audio jack, and two additionally USB-A connections, one being the fast 3.0 version. For Internet connections, you can opt for the Ethernet port for a wired connection, or remove small flap to slot the included WiFi dongle. It even features Bluetooth 4.0 if you wish to connect your smart devices to the built-in speakers.
Viewsonic’s minimalist design of the X10-4K extends to its controls as well. While most brands include the usual array of buttons on their projectors, Viewsonic settled on a single knob on top of the X10-4K that is both your power button and volume control. This projector is compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, so you can control it via voice command. But since Amazon has no presence in Malaysia, Google Voice Command is likely what you’ll be using.
If you prefer more manual control, you’ll be glad to know that the X10-4K comes with its own remote with few buttons and easily identifiable icons – which are Power, Autofocus, Input option, Bluetooth, Audio, Settings, Home and Back. They’re even backlit so you can actually use it in the dark! It also features a dial that is once again for volume and general directional control in the settings. The remote fits nicely in my hands, but isn’t as responsive as I would like it to be even when I point it direction at the projector.
Features – Oh boy here we go
The Viewsonic X10-4K is packed with features for a projector, and that’s putting it mildly. Viewsonic is marketing the X10-4K as 4K, but the projected image is actually produced using a single Texas Instruments DLP 4K Ultra HD chip with XPR technology. Prior to writing this review, that phrase was gibberish to me. What it essentially means is that the projector flashes four 1080p panels in four quadrants, and this is done so fast that you would perceive it as a single image. While it’s not native 4K, you can input 4K signals and it would come out the same. The X10 also is a single-chip DLP projector, rather a three-chip one – which apparently improves the sharpness and frees it from alignment issues. As far as I can tell during my time with it, it’s sharp and free of alignment issues.
Another unique feature of the X10-4K is its use of red, green and double blue (RGBB) LED light sources rather than the usual UHP bulbs. This results in what Viewsonic claimed to be brightness of 2400 lumens and a lifespan of up to 30,000 hours. Which is pretty bright, and 30,000 hours is 3.42 years. These LED light sources also eliminates rainbow artefacts (colour fringing) caused by the colour wheel used on traditional lamp-based projectors. The RGBB LEDs gives the image a wide colour gamut, up to 125% of Rec.709. That brightness and colour will be helpful for HDR content because the X10-4K supports HDR10. Additionally, there is Full HD 3D, but you have to have your own active-shutter glasses, and 3D content.
The setup was simple enough – for me, all I needed was the included power adapter and HDMI cable, then I was good to go. Once everything is connected and switched on, I just pointed the projector at the closest blank wall. The autofocus and auto-keystone features work really well due to the IR sensors upfront. The projector also uses a short-throw lens. This translates to a fairly large image from a short distance away – a 120-inch image from just over 2m away, and that brightness I mentioned earlier meant that the projector can be used in a room with ambient light but of course the best results are from an as-dark-as-possible environment.
Once the image is focused and aligned, the next thing you can do is choose your preferred image settings – from choices of Brightest, TV, Movie, Gaming and User 1-2. The Movie picture profile is a personal favourite and a good starting point if you’re hoping to go into the intricacies of gamma and colour settings. I left most if not all settings at default. This projector really upped the scales for my pre-episode IX Star Wars marathon and made it a real treat.
Despite what I read up on for the X10-4K, it’s actually not too bad for gaming. I tried the recently released Halo Reach on Steam with its newly supported 4K60p gameplay. I have to say it worked out better than I expected. There is a noticeable slight lag in response time but it wasn’t bad enough for me to play a relatively fast-paced shooter. Although if you’re playing multiplayer, probably not the best idea because every millisecond counts.
Out of all the impressive features in the X10-4K, the one that surprised me the most was the built-in Harman Kardon speaker. Usually, “built-in” speakers carry a negative connotation with it. But speakers in this projector are so good that I didn’t feel the need to use external speakers – which is fitting for a projector that’s meant to be portable.
The Viewsonic X10-4K projector has a stellar image in a portable LED projector. Any media buff will be more than happy to have this in their homes. The short-throw lens really makes its accessible for people with smaller spaces and even for those looking for a home theatre solution. Packing all these features into a relatively portable package means for a more premium price, and the RM 5999 price tag tells you the same story. But if you can afford the Viewsonic X10-4K, it is a mainstay for your household or anywhere you wish to bring it too.
Viewsonic X10-4K Projector
The Viewsonic X10-4K projector has a stellar image in a portable LED projector and would make any media buff more than happy to have this in their homes.