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110" wide CIH with 16:9 Masking


Established Member
Been doing a lot of research lately both here and on AVS. Bit of background:

My setup will be in a loft conversion. I don't have the whole loft, to work with. There is a Shower room and landing taking up about a thirs of the width. In other words the HC portion of the room width wise is from the eaves to about a metre past the apex of the roof. ie. Wall under the eaves is 1.5m high before it meets the sloping ceiling whereas on the other side the wall is 8 or 9ft high.

So I am limited on one side of the room as to how high the screen can be mounted.

The room isn't actually built yet but I marked out the gable wall on a spare wall in the house from the dimensions on the plans. I then set up my Panny Ae900 to see what kind of size 2.35 image I could fit on the wall. Ultimately the Panny will be replaced with an AE5000 (Yes, not a 4000, I'm waiting/hoping for 3D compat. next year. Fingers crossed :D ) In other words I'll be using the zoom method for CIH.

Anyway, I knew 18" off the floor was as low as I wanted to go for the bottom of the screen. The slope of the roof would provide the other height limitation. Within those parameters I zoomed the PJ. Mighty impressed by the resulting 110" wide 2.35 image. Doubly mighty impressed that from 1.5x screen width distance from a rough yellow wallpaper backing paper wall, this Dim 720p PJ projecting an SD Dvd image 110" across still looked pretty darn good. Thus I have no fear about using a brand new 1600 lumen 1080p AE5000 using the zoom method.

Anyway, I then remembered I hadn't left space at the sides for the floorstanding speakers. Not a problem on the left side as the sloping roof limitation left the left side of the screen about 18 inches from the eaves wall. However on the other side, I had only left about 4 inches from the screen to the side wall. I rezoomed the image to give me the required space for a speaker on the right. Oh Dear, Its amazing how quick the image scale in all dimensions shrinks when you decress the width by 10 inches or so.

No, No, No! This just wont do.

I come up with a solution for the Floorstanding speaker problem. I don't have the funds with the house renovations to be buying new speakers as well as everything else. As it is the new PJ would have to wait about a year anyway. ie. I need to reuse my speakers. Luckily I have Floorstanders with a symetrical arrangement of 2 Mid/Bass drivers, one on either side of the tweeter so I wont run into the Vertical/horizontal aural localisation plane thingy with them on their sides. They'll go on the floor on their sides with DIY Spiked feet with the drivers angled up at the seating position. All inside a stage with a velvet covered hard top but framed front with speaker grille cloth stretched over.

Now we get to the masking though. The professional solutions are a non starter. The prices are just rediculous. Seeing as pricing was actually so hard to find, I should have known what to expect. ie. If you need to ask the price, you can't afford it ! :D But the few prices I did find....OMG!! :D

Not only did the slope affect the screen size but my desire to maximise it as much as I could also meant I can't implement any of the motorised DIY solutions bue they side roller blinds or even curtains with built in masking.

The only thing I can think of is the following which I want to run by you.
I simple velvet covered panel hinged to the side of the screen. Manually swing it front of the screen sides for 16:9 and manually swing it 90º away to the side walls for 2.35 where it acts as an anti reflective covering on the sidewalls which are so close to the screen.

Can anyone see a problem with this that I haven't thought of? Can anyone think how one might motorise the swinging masks?

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