Question Reduce image size for long distance projector installation

stoltzy

Member
Hello. I'm building a home theater in a large room in my house and I'm looking at going with a projector setup.

The on the opposite wall from where the screen will be there, is a utility closet behind it. This provides and ideal place to place a projector with a little window in the wall. I prefer this as I'm particular about sound and I want the projector to be isolated from the room so that I don't hear the fan.

The issue I'm having is that the distance from that placement to the screen is almost 17 feet. I've borrowed some projectors for testing and with all of them, the image is way too big at the lowest zoom setting. I really was happy with this one: LG HU70LA overall, but the image is just won't work from that distance.

I'm pretty tech savvy, but I don't have a lot of experience with projectors. I'm looking for some guidance on this. Are there solutions for getting a smaller image form that distance? Are there certain features I should be looking for in a projector? I've seen the term "zoom in all directions" as a feature, but not sure if that is what I'm looking for.

Thanks!

-Scott
 

noob0101

Suspended
Hello. I'm building a home theater in a large room in my house and I'm looking at going with a projector setup.

The on the opposite wall from where the screen will be there, is a utility closet behind it. This provides and ideal place to place a projector with a little window in the wall. I prefer this as I'm particular about sound and I want the projector to be isolated from the room so that I don't hear the fan.

The issue I'm having is that the distance from that placement to the screen is almost 17 feet. I've borrowed some projectors for testing and with all of them, the image is way too big at the lowest zoom setting. I really was happy with this one: LG HU70LA overall, but the image is just won't work from that distance.

I'm pretty tech savvy, but I don't have a lot of experience with projectors. I'm looking for some guidance on this. Are there solutions for getting a smaller image form that distance? Are there certain features I should be looking for in a projector? I've seen the term "zoom in all directions" as a feature, but not sure if that is what I'm looking for.

Thanks!

-Scott
Is the LG too loud?

You need to find a projector with the appropriate throw ratio.

Have you decided on a screen size?

What's the seating distance?

Color of walls?
 

stoltzy

Member
Yes, the LG is too loud for me. Honestly, any fan noise is deal breaker for me. If I have to mount it somewhere where I can hear it, then I'd rather go with a flat panel. Hoping I can get it to work behind the wall.

Here's the details:
  • Distance from projector to screen: 17 feet
  • Seating distance: 8-10 feet
  • Ceiling height: 89". The projector window would be right at the top of that, as the room behind, where the projector would be mounted, has 96" ceilings.
  • Screen size: about 90" I have no issue with a very large screen, but the challenge is that with the projector on the back wall, viewers heads will clip the picture. Based on my tests so far I think I wouldn't be able to go bigger than 100"
  • Wall color: The entire room is still down to the studs, so color is to be determined. But, because the room will be used for more than just the theatre, we'll likely be having white on most of the walls...an accent wall is possible. I am interested in hearing about what would be considered optimal, though.
  • The room has no windows
  • Another thing to note is that I may have to mount the projector slightly off center.
Since I posted this yesterday, I've been researching more and can see that the projectors I've been looking at (like the LG), won't fit my needs. Like you said, I need to consider throw ratio, but also with the possible off-center placement, I think I also need one that will do vertical AND horizontal keystone. Does that sound correct?

I've been using this throw distance calculator and I found this Epson that is within my budget: Epson Home Cinema 3800 Projection Calculator - Throw Distance and Screen Size

That Epson also appears to have more adjustments available, including horizontal keystone.

Not sure of the accuracy of that calculator, but it's pretty handy. If there are similar projectors that you would recommend, let me know.

Thanks for your help!

-Scott
 
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noob0101

Suspended
Yes, the LG is too loud for me. Honestly, any fan noise is deal breaker for me. If I have to mount it somewhere where I can hear it, then I'd rather go with a flat panel. Hoping I can get it to work behind the wall.

Here's the details:
  • Distance from projector to screen: 17 feet
  • Seating distance: 8-10 feet
  • Ceiling height: 89". The projector window would be right at the top of that, as the room behind, where the projector would be mounted, has 96" ceilings.
  • Screen size: about 90" I have no issue with a very large screen, but the challenge is that with the projector on the back wall, viewers heads will clip the picture. Based on my tests so far I think I wouldn't be able to go bigger than 100"
  • Wall color: The entire room is still down to the studs, so color is to be determined. But, because the room will be used for more than just the theatre, we'll likely be having white on most of the walls...an accent wall is possible. I am interested in hearing about what would be considered optimal, though.
  • The room has no windows
  • Another thing to note is that I may have to mount the projector slightly off center.
Since I posted this yesterday, I've been researching more and can see that the projectors I've been looking at (like the LG), won't fit my needs. Like you said, I need to consider throw ratio, but also with the possible off-center placement, I think I also need one that will do vertical AND horizontal keystone. Does that sound correct?

I've been using this throw distance calculator and I found this Epson that is within my budget: Epson Home Cinema 3800 Projection Calculator - Throw Distance and Screen Size

That Epson also appears to have more adjustments available, including horizontal keystone.

Not sure of the accuracy of that calculator, but it's pretty handy. If there are similar projectors that you would recommend, let me know.

Thanks for your help!

-Scott
The most difficult aspect to achieve by a projector is good blacks. Ambient light and wall reflections affect it:

But the LG has poor black level so you might not care? Or maybe you haven't spent enough time with watching it.

A TV would do much better in a room with ambient light/reflections and with black level. TVs also have better color then projectors, and better HDR. The advantage with projectors is the large diagonal.

Between 90-100" projection and a 85" TV I would choose the TV.

When getting a projector it's recommended to use it on the wall for while, but the general ratio is 10-12" in diagonal for every foot in distance. Video made for the cinema (movies) looks better on a larger screen, and TV video is made for smaller displays. Some TV like good production series will look better on a larger screen also.

For instance my preference is 13" for every foot for movies, and 11" for 16:9 TV content.


Consider that movies are almost always in 2.39:1/2.35:1 format, which have black bars on top and bottom, reducing the height of the image so it could be a higher diagonal and the beam not hit the people.

That calculator is ok. Some projectors like the HC3800 have lens shift. After inputting the screen size, at the bottom of the page there is a section called lens shift. If both vertical and horizontal lens shift are used at the same time the lens shift range in the calculator is reduced.

With the HC3800 there have been reported loss of resolution/detail when lens shift is used from the default position.


The throw ratio required for an 100" screen in 16:9 format from 17' is 2.33x. The HC3800 lens shift is up to 2.15x.

Projectors with higher throw ratio and lens shift are difficult to find. One option is the Epson 5050UB:

The HC4010 is the 5050UB with poor blacks, but better than the LG's, but with a 10GB HDMI. This means up to 4K HDR 30/24Hz. 60Hz is not just required for gaming, but some streaming services/boxes require 60Hz.

The Epsons are not as sharp as the LG, and have a different look. There are no issues with lens shift. It's been reported that there were no issues even with 100% lens shift, but can't guarantee that this is true. The 4/5/6000 series has good quality lenses, so there should not be an issue with lens shift.


Another option that will allow you to use the LG would be a hush box installed in the ceiling.
 
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