BenQ ScreenBar Halo is an LED monitor light that comes with a backlight design and wireless controller. We give it a try and see how it performs in this review.
Monitor Light: An Essential for Working in Low Light Conditions
We have been using the BenQ ScreenBar for several years now. We use it on our second monitor and like how it helps to light the monitor in dim lighting conditions. This is especially helpful in reducing glare and relieving eye strain, especially since we are constantly looking at the screen for work.
We liked simplicity and sleekness of the BenQ ScreenBar’s design and were curious when the opportunity to review the BenQ ScreenBar Halo came up.
Unboxing the BenQ ScreenBar Halo
The BenQ ScreenBar Halo came packaged in a cleanly designed black box.
Opening it up, what caught our eye was the round dial at the right half of the box. Was this the Halo?
And indeed it was.
The dial is a wireless controller that allows you to turn off and on the BenQ ScreenBar Halo light. It also controls for the various features of the monitor screen light.
BenQ ScreenBar Halo Review: Setting Up the Monitor Light
The BenQ ScreenBar Halo’s LED lamp is 50 cm long. It comes in a gun-metal grey colour.
The ScreenBar is designed to work with monitors that have a bezel width or up to 0.63 cm and thickness of up to 6 cm for flat monitors and up to 3.8 cm for curved monitors with a radius over 1000R. A special adaptor is provided for use with the curved monitors.
Mounting the monitor light is simple. There is a counter-weight clip that goes on over the back of the monitor, holding it place by gravity.
You then need to use the 150-cm-long cable to plug the screen light into a USB as the power source.
The wireless controller, on the other hand, needs to be powered by three AAA batteries (provided).
Remove the cover at the bottom of the controller (look for the notch), seat in the batteries, replace the cover and it is all ready to be used. The controller automatically connects to the light and there is no need to pair it or fiddle further about.
BenQ ScreenBar Halo Features
Powering on the BenQ ScreenBar Halo is as simple as pressing the on-off button at the centre of the wireless controller.
In the older BenQ ScreenBars, the on-off button and other controllers were integrated into the LED lamp. This resulted in having to slide the finger along the top of the LED lamp to turn it on and off, and to adjust the brightness and temperature of the light.
With the wireless controller, this is now a thing of the past. All the controls are clearly laid out on the wireless controller, which can be placed on the desk.
This makes it much easier to turn off and on the light.
The wireless controller also feels solidly built. It sits firmly on the desktop work surface.
Another “party trick” that the wireless controller is said to have is the ability to control two BenQ ScreenBar Halos at the same time.
While we didn’t have a chance to test this out, according to the manual, a single wireless controller can be paired and connected to multiple ScreenBar Halos. This means that if your home set up makes use of multiple screens and you have multiple ScreenBar Halos, you can control all of them with a single controller.
Another significant feature of the BenQ ScreenBar Halo is its back light.
This light is has been cleverly integrated with the counter weight of the light. The benefits of the back light are that it helps to reduce eye strain and also improves the perceived contrast of the screen.
There are three lighting modes available. The front light only, the back light only and both lights on at the same time. Personally, we found it most comfortable to have both the front and back lights on while working.
The different lighting modes can be toggled through on the wireless controller.
The LED light provides a minimum of 500 lux illuminance. Very importantly, the asymmetrical light design means that there is no screen glare or reflection of the light off the screen.
The light bar can be angled so that it illuminates up an area of 63 cm to 40 cm in front of the monitor, providing lighting for the desk workspace as well.
Lighting controls available on the wireless controller include brightness and temperature.
To adjust these, simply activate the control by touching the correct icon on the wireless controller and turning the controller wheel, which is the casing of the controller.
It is quite intuitive and dots along the circumference of the controller as we literally dialled in our preferred setting are a nice touch too.
It is a great piece of elegant design.
For those who rather not have to fiddle around with the wheel, there is an auto dimming feature available.
With one touch, the BenQ ScreenBar Halo’s built-in sensor will automatically detect the amount of ambient light available and adjusts the light to 500 lux, the recommended lighting level recommend by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).
My Favourite Setting
Another feature of the BenQ ScreenBar Halo available on the wireless controller is the ability to save a favourite setting.
Once we found a setting that we liked, all we had to do is to press and hold the “heart” icon on the controller for 3 seconds. This saves the setting, which can be recalled by touching the “heart” icon again.
BenQ has managed to squeeze in a lot of useful features into the BenQ ScreenBar Halo. We liked the original ScreenBar but we like the ScreenBar Halo even more.
It is a useful add-on to the workspace for those who use computer monitors, helping to maintain eye comfort while we put in the hours at work.
Find out more about the BenQ ScreenBar Halo.
Back to School Promotion (19 to 25 Jun 2023)
BenQ is having a Back to School Promotion from 19 to 25 June 2023 on the ScreenBar series and other lighting and eye-care monitors.
Get more details about the promotion here.