Podcast: Large Screen HDR TV or Projector For Home Cinema + Best of the Month

Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
Any chance of including room treatments in the future - an often under-looked aspect in my opinion.

The stumbling block is trying to judge universal effectiveness when I only have one house to test them in. I'm not averse to the idea but I'm concerned that the results won't be meaningful enough to base any form of purchasing decision on.

Toon Army

Well-known Member
The stumbling block is trying to judge universal effectiveness when I only have one house to test them in. I'm not averse to the idea but I'm concerned that the results won't be meaningful enough to base any form of purchasing decision on.
Thanks Ed - I appreciate every room is different, however a discussion around general principles and products would be beneficial.


Distinguished Member
While I love my 4k 65” TV, when it comes to watching films, 99% of the time it gets covered up by the 120” pull down screen for use with my cheap 1080p projector.

No, the contrast / blacks are not as good on the PJ, there is no HDR and it is only 1080p, but the size provides a level of immersion that the TV just can’t, and still provides a great looking image.


@Phil Hinton - has any thought been given to making the site ad free for Patreon supporters? I'm sure you'd get plenty of people prepared to sign up for that particular perk! Presumably you could "price in" any corresponding loss of advertising revenue?
It's been covered in the past how much you would need to pay to go ad free. It's in the feedback forum somewhere

Been using Mesh for almost 4 years now. It's only the BT whole home version. But it works and works well. Great coverage, extendable. What's not to like

I can only dream of a PJ set up, came close a few years ago but it wasnt to be.
Still regret not getting a 65 OLED when I got the 55 tho
If the euromillions comes in tonight IMAX private is probably on the shopping list along with a house to go around it
But reality is that next upgrade will probably be an amp that can do .4 so I can stick up another 2 atmos speakers I have hidden behind the sofa where they cant be seen ;)
Right, I have just finished watching the replay on TV vs projector. It was interesting and pretty much concurred with my own thoughts. In fact, even though we have a TV-based home cinema in the master bedroom, it rarely gets used. This is not because it's a bedroom, nor because the TV can't deliver the goods. It's because the experience is totally lacking in comparison with the main home cinema.

For starters, at 45 sq/m the main room is 3x the size of the master bedroom so we can be positioned well back from the screen. But I get the cinema effect completely. For example, films projected in 4K may be very realistic in appearance but in 1080p they are more cinematic. And of course, the sound system is everything.

With that, I'm going to finish by admitting I watched Monster Hunter a couple of nights back. The film itself was rather Mad Maxish and would rate as total garbage in my mind however, the sound treatment was mind-blowing! So much so that I recommend anyone with a good 5.1 or 7.1 sound system to watch it just to experience the total immersion they have achieved. It definitely achieves that coveted "WOW" factor. If you watch it on a TV with a sound bar, it just won't cut it. Horses for courses as they say. ;)


Active Member
We're finding the same as quite a few people on here... The scale of a projector seems to trump the performance of a telly 90% of the time - so much so that I am in two minds about my next purchase... Which was meant to be an OLED TV. I am coming around to the idea of upgrading the PJ instead!


Well-known Member
I agree with Pecker in that I also prefer the quality of a large TV.

I have also had numerous projectors and cinema rooms. I started with a Barco 808G CRT projector with 100" 16:9 screen and then went through numerous 7 and 9 series JVC projectors with an ISCO anamorphic lens and cinesled with a 120" 2:35 AT seymour screen. I have spent a large fortune on the kit over the years.

I sold all of the video kit a couple of years ago and bought an OLED and since then I have not missed the projection system one bit.
I still have a decent 7.2.4 Atmos sound system though which I would not compromise on.


Well-known Member
I thought that I would quickly post before tonight's podcast!

I realise that people have different views on this topic, which is fine. I'll begin by saying that (I don't go out much!) the best 1080p experience that I've had was about seven years ago, at the home of a doctor who's too busy nowadays to be on here much. His username was big boss. I visited his house and although he had a Panasonic 50VT50 (I think!) television, I remember being most impressed by his projecter system. I can't remember exactly what projector he had, but his projector screen was, I think, a silver React Draper 2.1. And, as I say, that remains the best 1080p picture that I have ever seen. I don't have much experience of 4K screens, whether projector or television, so I'm not in a position to say how my Sony 75ZD9 television (which I remain hugely pleased with) compares with a 4K projector. I should also say that I've seen a lot of quite indifferent, or badly adjusted,

I think that the biggest factor in determining whether to go for a big television or a projector screen is whether or not one has a dedicated cinema room, with blacked-out windows. It's not so much about the size of the room, only whether it is dedicated to home cinema or not. For instance, my parlour measures about 18 feet by 14 feet, which I believe is about the same size as Mr Withers's home cinema. But his setup is dedicated to home cinema, but my parlour is not, it has to function to some extent as a normal room and so although I can draw the curtains, I simply can't install blackout windows.. I live in a two-bedroom tenement flat, so it's just not possible to create a dedicated room!

I'm quite prepared to accept what @Phil Hinton said during the podcast, reinforced by @LiquidAssFrance in several posts, notably #32, that the best picture is given by a good projector onto a good projector screen, in a blacked-out room. And a further advantage of a projector is that it enables installing three identical speakers at the optimum height for the front left, centre and right channels, with at least the centre speaker behind an acoustically-transparent screen. And at any given size, a good projector / screen combination is cheaper than the same-size televison, if one indeed exists at the very big sizes. With a television, the centre channel must perforce be below or above the televison, though I personally get around the problem by using two centre channel speakers, one just below and the other just above the screen, and connected in series, not in parallel. They create the illusion of the sound emerging from the middle of the television screen!

But televisions offer much better HDR, and are also better for everyday viewing. So on balance, I'm with @Pecker in post #23 and with @rigman in post #34. And, for me, heaven is a top-range 85" LCD television. But for anyone choosing a projector, that's all good!


Active Member
Great discussion both on the thread and the pod. As a long time stalker on these forums and avid listener, its been one of the most interesting ones in a while. :clap:

It's been a dream of mine for many years to have a dedicated room but, with an ever expanding family and the commitments that come with that, i still hope one day i can fulfill this.

These days, I have a modest lounge set-up with a cheap LCD, 20 year old mix of speakers, a very reliable Onkyo amp and every streaming service known to man. It may not be as immersive or high-end as some, but i've still had many great moments with it for as long as i care to remember. I would like to upgrade to an OLED one day, possibly the speakers too.

We have had planning permission to extend, which will give us the much needed space we need, so the dream gotten that little be closer. We plan to have a dedicated multi purpose cinema/media room with projector in it. Watch this space!

Back to the pod....

@Ed Selley - 1000% agree on Tron Legacy - easily one of my favourites of all time and one I frequently revisit - It's a sad day indeed as i too was looking forward to seeing their next foray into soundtracks again. This is followed closely by Marvin Gaye's Trouble Man, which, incidentally, I have NEVER seen the film ( although i do own it :facepalm:) but, like much of the blaxploitation era, had the stellar musical backing of some fantastic scores by great artists.

@Casimir Harlow - Regarding Kajillionare, the performances are great, including an almost unrecognisable Debra Winger! I'm afraid for all its quirky, offbeat sensibilties, i was left a little cold by it.

Anyway, keep up the good work!

Steve Withers

I believe I've made my views on projectors vs TVs very clear in multiple podcasts, but to reiterate I always prefer watching films on a projector. It's not just the size of the image, although that's certainly a factor, but also the way a projected film image looks. It's obviously a personal thing, but I just prefer it, even in these days of HDR. In fact when I have watched a film on both my LG 77C9 and JVC N7, I have always found myself preferring the projected image. Obviously this can vary depending on the projector, and I appreciate not everyone has the option of using a projector. However if it is an option, I would always recommend going the projector route, because once you've gone big-screen projection there's no going back!


Well-known Member
It's very good of Mr Withers to contribute to this thread, even though he missed the original podcast a fortnight ago. Again, I am in no position to comment about 4K projectors, because I've never seen one. And again, the best 1080p picture that I have seen was on bigboss's projector about seven years ago. So it may be that if I were to see a calibrated 4K projector and screen, that I would be converted. However, my wider experience of projector systems, including, and perhaps especially, at the commercial cinema, leads me away from projectors. My two main complaints about normal projector screens are poor black levels and muted colours. I can't say definitely whether the colours are muted, it could be that I'm used to television colours which are brighter, but there can be no doubt about the poor black levels - sometimes, we're talking mid-grey, folks! - of most commercial cinema systems that I have seen.

People on AVForums who have projector systems will have them much better adjusted than seems to be the case for projector systems at universities, or in work environments, or at commercial cinemas. Mr Withers will be at the pinnacle of the standard that can be obtained from a dedicated projector system.

One last thing to consider is cost. The podcast, I think, mentioned projectors costing about £1,000, but certainly some AVForums devotees will have projectors of around £5,000 and more. I'm not sure how much a good, non-reflective, acoustically transparent screen costs, but I'm guessing at least £1,000? Plus there'll be the cost of installing the projector to a joist or similar? Televisions, on the other hand, can (though definitely not always) be cheaper. People will have different ideas about how big a "large-screen" HDR televison needs to be, but let's say at least 75". Currently one top 4K (let's not complicate things by talking about 8K resolution ust now!) television, albeit from 2020, is the the Q95T range from Samsung, it was the brand's top 4K televison from last year. This is a screen shot of its current price at Richer Sounds:
Samsung QE75Q95T at Richer Sounds.jpg

which is a very good price, indeed it is barely half of the £5,1000 that I paid the same Richer Sounds for my Sony 75ZD9 televison three years ago. If we go to 85" sets, one such is the bigger version of the 75" set. It doesn't seem to be available at Richer Sounds any more, but it can be had from John Lewis online:
Samsung QE85Q95T television at John Lewis.jpg

and for only £3799, which seems an excellent price for a top-range 85" 4K set.

Lastly and more generally, this is a screen save of part of the 44 televisions that I got today from searching the John Lewis range for televisons 70" and bigger, sorted from cheapest to most expensive:
Big TVs at John Lewis.jpg

I still shake my head that you can now get an LG 77C9 OLED for as little as £3399!

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