Every once in a while, I agree to review a product that I feel might not be that great and sometimes I am surprised… and sometimes my gut was right.  Today’s review is on the BenQ ScreenBar LED Task lamp, one of those products I felt was not going to be so great but who knows, it could be pretty good.  Before we get into the review and showing you how the bar works, let’s get into a little of the features and specifications.

BenQ ScreenBar Features and Specifications

  • Light Source: Dual Color LED
  • Color Rendering Index > 80
  • Illuminance: Up to 800 Lux in the center (height 45cm / 17.72 inches)
  • Luminous Flux: 320lm
  • Color Temperature 2700~6500K Warm to Cool Light
  • Power Input: 5V USB port
  • Power Consumption: 5Watts (Max)
  • Materials: Aluminum Alloy, Polycarbonate
  • No Screen Glare
  • IEEE PAR|789 Non-Flicker
  • IEC/TR 62778 free of Blue-light
  • Auto dimming
  • Adjustable and weighted clip to attach to monitors
  • Illuminated Surface Area 35cm/74m (13.78 inches / 29.13 inches)
  • USB Powered
  • 5 foot USB Cable Included
  • ±10° light rotation
  • 4 touch sensor buttons
    • Manual Dimmer
    • Hue Adjustment
    • Auto Dimmer
    • Power
  • Updated 5/18/18 1 Year Warranty (Explanation at the end of the review.)

A ton of features and specifications for a simple LED Task Lamp, right?  Well, let’s check out an unboxing and see what comes in the box.

So let’s check out each piece that comes in the package.

Not exactly sure what this is and I did try using the google translate android photo feature, Yandex and One-on-One but they couldn’t quite get it.  Sorry guys, I can’t read that.

On the flip side, we have this… I can’t read nor translate that either.  I shot BenQ an email about this as to I received manuals and/or advertisements in a different language and they mentioned that the box and device itself came in English with translation, though the materials did not, to make packaging easier making the product less expensive for us, but they stated the QR codes would give me all the information I needed.  I tried that as well, but it seems that the site was down.  Maybe not 100% needed, but it might be good to know what is in store in regards to the warranty information.

Honestly, the manual is not really needed on this, but I fumbled for a few seconds figuring how to put this together.  Don’t worry though, later in this review I have a video that shows you how to put it together.  Let’s move on.

This other manual comes inside, I will save you from seeing the other side, but it was not in English either though I can speak and read Spanish as well… but it was not in Spanish either.  What does this mean for the light itself though?  Well, we will see soon enough.

This is the included USB cable; this cable also powers the LED light so there no additional connections that need to be made.  At first glance it may seem like a standard Micro USB to USB A cable, but it’s slightly different.

It may be hard to tell, but it’s a flat USB cable, not round so it might be a little easier to get around corners.  The cable is also 5 Feet.

Micro USB side

USB A side.

This is the adjustable and weighted clip that clips on to your monitor and holds the Task Lamp.  As mentioned previously, I will go over a little later in the review how to put this together.

A closer look at the weighted piece.  Looks like a very nice aluminum brushed piece with the BenQ logo.

This adjustable hinge allows this clip to be a lot more versatile allowing it to attach to a larger range of monitors than most other clips.

Then we have the bar itself.  Here we can see the touch sensor buttons, from left to right, Power Button, Auto Dimmer Button, Hue Adjustment Button and Manual Dimmer button.  Illustrated on the next photo.  They are touch sensor buttons, you only need to place your finger on them, you don’t need to push down.

The Ambient Light Sensor allows the ScreenBar to automatically adjust the lighting based on the ambient light, but if you feel the light it provides is too bright or too dim, of course you can manually adjust it.

Coming in a bit close we can see manual dimmer button and hue adjustment button, as well as the Ambient light sensor.

On the other side of the bar, we can see the Power and Auto Dimmer button.  I wanted to give you a better idea of what the silk screening looked like.

 

And here is the Micro USB connection close up.

I want to show you a bit on how it works since the instructions are not provided in English, I figured it might be best to provide a video on how to put it together and how to attach it to your monitor.  Check it out.

In that video, we go over how quick and easy it is to put together and how easy it is to attach to your monitor. So now let me show you really quick a bit on how it works.

In that video, I show you how much easier to makes things for gaming, the particular game I was showing was Dauntless. While monitors provide lots of light for gaming, it does not provide adequate lighting, so your eyes will burn up and hurt lots, so it really does help. It helps to also light up your entire desktop.  It can be a bit difficult at times to see which button you are hitting when its dark since there are no physical buttons that you can feel your way around.

This is what the underside of the ScreenBar looks like.  Let’s take a closer look.

Yeah, they are LED’s so that allows them to not heat up and to not consume so much power, it will only consume up to 5Watts.  The LED’s also allow you to change he HUE of the light as I showed you in the previous video, allowing for cool white light or warmer more red lighting and again completely adjustable.  I prefer the cold white light myself, to me it makes things more clear.

Turning the bar over, we can see all of the certifications the bar has as well as the part number, serial number and model number.

I showed you what each of the buttons did as well in that previous video but it was geared more towards gaming. Maybe you are not a gamer and don’t see the benefit of this, actually there are tons of benefits but this time I will gear the next video more towards work and writing in the late night hours.

A little better right,… since I do both gaming and tons of writing at any time of the day or night, this light has already come in very handy for me.
Being that my room was already lit at night if I turned the lights on, I figured it could not be better but this directed light so it made a noticeable difference. The film might not give you a great idea, but there is also an AP for Android called Lux Light which helps to put things into more perspective.

During the day, well more the morning but still very bright outside and the BenQ Screenbar on, I measure the lighting and it showed 439 LUX.  The shades were down though there was some light peering through.

With no lights, only the natural lights coming through the Window, we can see what a huge change that makes.  Let me turn on the light a sec

A little better, but not much.  With the ScreenBar alone it goes up to 439 LUX, it’s that good.   Remember that you can lower it too if its too bright for you.  The app may not be 100% accurate, but there is a big difference between 33 and 439.

Back to my original statement, I accepted this product to review for a good laugh and was planning on grading it accordingly but I was incredibly surprised by how well this lamp turned out.  Now, I use this lamp during the day and during the night, it works out great no matter when, obviously it works out better at night though.

Now on to giving this BenQ ScreenBar a rating.  Lets go over what’s great and what’s not so great about this Desk Lamp.

BenQ ScreenBar Pros

  • Sexy and Unique Compact Space Saving Design
  • Excellent Build Quality
  • No external battery source required, just needs a 5V USB connection.
  • Touch sensitive buttons
  • Adjustability of lights and hue

BenQ ScreenBar Cons

  • USB Cable could benefit from being a little longer, maybe 10 feet instead of 5 feet
  • A bit too costly
  • No documentation in English provided

This Screenbar has a ton of very unique touches, build quality and adjustability.  By far, one of the most unique LED Desk lamps I have found when searching on Amazon and NewEgg but I did find the price to be a little excessive, maybe dropping it $20 or $30 would be best.  The Screenbar clips onto a monitor, it does not use a stand or a neck which saves on additional aluminum, rubber, metal, cabling and so on so that should help drive that price down.  The small con, though it may not be a real con for most is that the USB cable is only 5 feet, 10 Feet would have made it perfect for me at least.

The other larger con is the fact that there is no documentation in English which normally does not mean too much, being that I am writing the review, you can use my review as instruction manuals but there is no warranty information.  I checked on NewEgg, Amazon and BenQ’s website and found no warranty information on this Screenbar, not even with the QR code on the box.  I will update the review with the Correct information.

Now that we have raised our grading scale from 5/5 up to 10/10 the scales are a bit different but price is one entire star for me.  Being that this screenbar is basically perfect, I give the BenQ ScreenBar LED Task Lamp a 8.5 out of 10, while not a perfect score it can be an editors choice (9.0) if the documentation was corrected.  This can be corrected at anytime and I would update the review with the score, this review is not only to benefit you the buyer, but also to benefit the companies that send me products to review to improve the quality of their products and services for you.

Documentation itself is an entire star, but just in a different language in the box and there is a QR code that will take you to website with your language, but the link was down at the moment.  If the end result is that there is no and will be no documentation, I will drop this review to a 8.0, but once all is provide I will raise it to a 9.0.

UPDATED 5/18—-

Working with BenQ, they have corrected their documentation  and here is the link: https://www.benq.com/en-us/support/downloads-faq/products/lighting/screenbar/manual.html

The Warranty terms while they were of course open and activated for their other products, it seemed that they had not activated it for the ScreenBar, but it has now been activated and is live here: https://www.benqdirect.com/audio-and-lighting/ereading/screenbar.html, they provide a 1 Year Warranty for the ScreenBar.

Since this has been updated to a 9 with the documentation and warranty settled, I gladly award the BenQ ScreenBar LED Task Lamp an Editors Choice 9.0.  Great job BenQ and still today and I using and loving this ScreenBar.

Iggy Castillo

Iggy Castillo

Senior Editor an Reviewer at Dragonblogger.com
I have spent many years in the PC boutique name space as Product Development Engineer for Alienware and later Dell through Alienware's acquisition and finally Velocity Micro. During these years I spent my time developing new configurations, products and technologies with companies such as AMD, Asus, Intel, Microsoft, NVIDIA and more. The Arts, Gaming, New & Old technologies drive my interests and passion. Now as my day job, I am an IT Manager but doing reviews on my time and my dime.
Iggy Castillo

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