The best upgrade i`ve bought cost £16!

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Neal W, Aug 11, 2006.

  1. Neal W

    Neal W
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    Firstly a big hello to everyone :hiya: and also a huge thanks to James for helping me out with my projector :smashin:

    My entry in to the world of crt PJ`s started with a Sony VPH1040-QM Super Bright, then a Nec 6pg and now a Marquee 9501lc. The 9501 has now got new green and blue tube, the red only doing minimal hours with no wear to be seen wasnt changed but has got a red c element now. Recently got a crystalio and philips 963 SDI`d player as a film source and use my x360 for HD games (yes, i know the x360 is a sin in the eyes of many but its fun! and i already know i should grow up). Really need to sort the HD film source out as i have seen HD on my PJ and its amazing, but im not quite there yet.

    The only problem with my picture is that i felt it was lacking black detail. Had the PJ setup in day time with black out blinds that aren`t 100% effective but the feeling was that at night the picture would improve, (also my tubes aren`t past the majic 500 hrs so would need to have another cal` etc when truely settled in. However, after watching a particularily naff (dark) disk i became interested in trying to get more black detail so fiddled with some setting up to the point of G2`s, but in the end decided that the original settings are best (not surpirising as James set it up).

    After chatting to james about the issue he suggested trying something out. So i purchased 6x1.5m of black fabric for £16 and some drawing pins. Then i fitted it to the ceiling last night covering up the white ceiling from the projector to the screen, the screen case (white) and also the side of a fire place near the screen which is also white. (the screen is already on a dark blue wall).
    After letting the projector warm up for a bit, then sat down to have a look at what i thought wasn`t really going to make any difference. Instantly however i could see the difference, picture brighter(black level), appeared to be more colour and increased white output. After a while fiddled with my settings and have now run with 5 points less contrast. Brightness hasnt really changed but i had been pushing brightness before and now no need.

    Now looking at my set up and how its changed, it was reflection from ceiling and the near by fire place that was killing my image. Now im running lower contrast which means less work by the PJ, for spending £16 pounds! awesome. Also can`t remember seeing white walls or ceiling in any of the cinema i`ve been too :rolleyes:, funny that :)

    Truth of the matter however is that it isnt really suitable for most people to run material on their ceiling the whole time, (my beloved has commented already). My way around this is to knock up a roller blind kit that will extend from the screen to hook fixings near the PJ, will update on how it goes.

    I`m sure most people already know about this trick but I can't recommend this cheap tip highly enough even if its to try just for fun, if you're considering a dedicated room in the future or have one it has to be something to think about.

    (did try to search on previous posts for this subject but couldn`t find anything easily, sorry if its a repeat)
     
  2. sbowler

    sbowler
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    Its very common for a dedicated HT room to be painted in a dark color, and this is well know to improve black levels on front projection systems. Also a way of increasing perceived black levels is to add a 2inch black velvet boarder around your screen if it hasnt one already.
     
  3. Neal W

    Neal W
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    the screen i have does have a border and is set on a blue wall, not great quality though. plan to have a dedicated room one day but that envolves a upgrade on the house, will get a suitable screen then and walls and ceiling will be as dark as i dare
     
  4. cosaw

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    Hi Neal and welcome,

    You raise a very valid point and an appropriate one given the recent discussion of budget CRT cinemas in another thread. The important point for people on a budget is to make your money count! Like you say £16 can make a big difference.

    I'd really love to paint my whole room black as I know it would really improve my pic. Unfortunately a no go area. I've got a large roll of black felt I bought ages ago - maybe I'll finally put it to the use it was intended for.

    My idea for best effect (which I've discussed before) and to make the felt go as far as possible is to make "blinkers". I'd get some light weight pannels and cover them with the black felt and then crop the image with the panels coming out at and appropriate angle and distance of around a meter from the screen. These panels could be hung from the ceiling and removed when not in use.

    In my house we rarely have more than 3 viewers and so the panels could be angled in to form a pyramid pointing to the viewers thus improving the prevention of light scatter to other in room surfaces even further. Making the scatter pattern small would mean less in room surfaces could reflect back to the screen and wash out your blacks. This could effectively make a little go a long way in a large room. For one centralised viewer you could really angle the panels in (or out nearest the screen whichever is easier). See picture below.

    [​IMG]

    The other option is black curatains all round the room walls but they're a bit more objectionable for some.

    I think this is one area where most CRTers without a dedicated room could get vast improvements for little money. Getting the basics right is not expensive but boy does it improve your pic!

    Obviously I'd patent this technology: EMBHIHLVS - Enhanced Modulated Black Hole Inverse Horn Loaded Viewing System. No light can escape except where intended. :D
     
  5. tommo2

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    My screen is a wall painted matt black and the screen area painted white. The walls and ceiling are white.
    I was thinking of painting the ceiling and walls dark red???
     
  6. cosaw

    cosaw
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    Suppose it would be a compromise but I'd be slightly worried about a paint colour skewing onscreen colours. At least with black white or a shade of grey your colour gamut won't get shifted.

    Hopefully one day I'll have a dedicated room - no windows matt black all round. Carry a torch or you won't be able to get out once the film has finished - that sorta thing!!
     
  7. Mad Mr H

    Mad Mr H
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    Without question a black wall with screen on it is a massive advantage.

    Total black out in the room is perfect but not always possible.

    I have mentioned to many the use of black velvet or black material to cover speakers and reduce reflections within a room they are often tall and either side of a screen, and usually have a polished finish.......
     
  8. Mad Mr H

    Mad Mr H
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    It is best to decide on an angle which the light will NOT EVER reflect back to the seating position.

    a very tight angle will allow reflections back to the viewing point.

    I like this idea of the screen shield, then extend it out to the walls and hide the speakers behind it as well......

    Obvioulsy I like to modify peoples designs :D

    But the "EMBHIHLVS" is a great product.

    THANK YOU (as the thanks button is currently not available due to a software issue!)
     
  9. cosaw

    cosaw
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    No problem, I like to think I'm at the cutting edge of pioneering new and inovative A/V solutions! I'd sell these "blinkers" at £500 a square foot - seems reasonable! :) ;) :D
     
  10. Mad Mr H

    Mad Mr H
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    Please keep for sale threads in the correct place ;)

    I will ask if we can have a high profit sales area created for you :smashin:

    There are some others that might way to join you there.........
     
  11. cosaw

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    Thats more like it! Theres no doubt at that price you'll be paying for the highest quality materials of course! For a start the felt will be 100% cotton and only the mattest and blackest of blacks! I'll probably use 4mm hardboard for the actual panels and coat with a PVA solution (diluted with only the finest Manchester tap watter filtered and distilled) to keep the chemical smell in before I apply the felt.

    EMBHIHLVS will be a high performance product. Tee hee. :D :D :D
     
  12. Mad Mr H

    Mad Mr H
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    WHY WHY WHY !!!

    Did you go and put this silly idea in my head............


    You guys know I cant resist these things.

    (James has been forgiven for the Bryston Ideas, Roland for the 1209s Blending, Barco for the modifications)

    But YOU! :devil:
     
  13. cosaw

    cosaw
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    Bryston ideas?

    Enlighten me please.
     
  14. Mad Mr H

    Mad Mr H
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    You dont know about the bryston ideas !!!!

    James came round here and "told" me that the Sony 9000ES series I had did not do my speakers justice.......

    Now there are a good amp/pre amp BUt the Brystons are better.............

    14 days later and 3 x 7BST series and 2 x 7B SST were installed :D , he was right! I did know this but I was not sure about spending that kind of money, it was worth it, but you know when you think what you are doing is right but the value means you question what you are doing and is it really gonna be worth it........

    I just needed a push in the right direction......


    BUT.....lets keep this thread on track.........


    The idea is excellent, the cost should to be low, the result very good, It would be good for people to post the fabric type, prices and where it was purchased from.

    I have a black front wall, B&Q Dulux paint, I will try and look the name up......

    I have deep red walls, BUT my ceiling does reflect a little, so I do think that I should paint that black as well.......

    BUT a fabric finish might be better and reduce the reflections better.

    I have given thoughts to velvet, felt, paint, speaker style acoustic cloth, cotton sheet,

    There will always be a limit to what can be achieved and what still looks good in the room.

    The idea of a retractable blind gives a dual purpose style & effect.

    is there a plain velvet wall paper that anyone has found at a reasonable cost?

    I looked at the self adhesive felts but never found large enough sizes to be viable.
     
  15. cosaw

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    Joking aside on the cost - I feel these are inexpensive techniques which give alot of bang for the buck. Think I payed around £9 for a 1x10m roll of black felt.

    Another light control idea that I came up with which is probably of most use to air coupled machines and dedicated 16:9 setups (not to say others haven't come up with the same idea - they probably have). I've noticed how much light escapes from the tubes/lenses which is neither associated with the active image or the raster. At the back of the lens (between the lens and the tube) I'm simply thinking of a matt black piece of thick paper cut appropriately to size with a trapezoidal window which would physically do you're blanking to 16:9 of the active image. Obviously you couldn't blank down to 2.35:1 in this way but even blanking to 16:9 is gonna cover a large part of your tube especially when you think that most tubes look closer to 1:1 than 4:3.

    I've noticed that the blanking on Barcos will blank out the active image (or raster if its visible) but the blanking itself still appears to emmit light - its probably bounce round off the glass surfaces in the lens tube/assembly. Actually blanking off all reflective or pottentially emiting surfaces will cut down unneccesary light emissions at source. I noticed this effect because I have a large 4:3 screen on a light coloured wall - on parts of the screen and the wall I can actually see the full outline of the tube even with no raster showing and projecting a dark image. Maybe I'll do a prototype and see if I get noticeable results - I'm positve I will.

    A side issue: Thereafter you wouldn't be able to do "full" 4:3 - you'd have to do 4:3 inside 16:9 but if you've gone for a 16:9 screen anyway then you're obviously already doing this or you don't watch any 4:3 anyway.

    What do you think?
     
  16. javers

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    Hi All,

    Wanted to add my experiences to this thread and what I've done to overcome my reflection problems. If you take a look at the first photo (the one with red surround) you can see that the light hitting the screen badly reflects onto the two sides of the screen surround and even more so on the ply at the bottom of the screen. As you can imagine during dark scenes this totally killed the image. I tried to reduce the problem as much as possible by painting the offending areas black but this still didn't solve the problem 100%. Since I wanted to change speakers and install my pair of BK Monoliths I figured may aswell rebuild the entire surround and sort out the reflections same time :)

    If you take a look at the second pic you can see how the basic frame has changed. The two sides of the surrond now angle in towards the screen, and you can't see the inside edges of the wood any more. You can't really see it from the pic (hence the idea must work!) but the bottom of the surrond now also slopes back in towards the screen a few degrees to stop the awful reflection from it. The only disadvantage of this is that that centre speaker is not level any more and is pointing up a few degrees, but this doesn't seem to be a problem as its pointing up directly around ear level.

    The results are a HUGE difference in PQ and i'm much happier with my pic now, which seems to almost "hover" in mid air as there is not a single bit of light bouncing off anything at the front of the room. The frame doesn't look like much but took many hours of planning and experimenting to get 0% reflections. I mainly did this by placing a piece of the frame in position, drop the lights, sit in my viewing position and shine a laser pen around the screen and look to see there were any reflections from any angle, if there are, rip that piece down and rethink the placement!

    Hope this might help someone in their design.

    Jon
     

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  17. cosaw

    cosaw
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    Thanks Jon - I like it! :smashin: Shows the principle works then as you say its alot of trial and error and work but it seems the results are worth it. What type of screen do you have? Does the screen have any gain?
     
  18. javers

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    Ah yes I should have mentioned the screen! Its just a plastered wall painted with screen goo (which is supposed to have a gain of around 1.3 I think). Its finished off with 1" x 1/2" wooden battons painted black and screwed around the edge of the goo. These are there to eventually act as runners for my screen masking which I really must get around to finishing off. There are pulleys in the ceiling behind the surround and (in theory at least) cord is going to run over them suspending the top mask using the weight of the bottom one in the same way as a window and its counter-weights work. They should then slide up and down together to make any aspect up to 2.40:1 without ever scratching the screen as the battons will hold them 1/2" clear of the goo.

    Jon
     
  19. cosaw

    cosaw
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    Nice work - Toying with the idea of a screen rebuil encorporating all these different ideas and might even save up for some goo!
     
  20. Mad Mr H

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    Cosaw - is that your first comission sale :D ?
     
  21. crteaman

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    Hi Neal,

    Firstly good to see you here, and secondly RE, the black material...what did I tell you, my advice is always totally free, when you first started to come over to my place after (and before too) the installation you kept saying your picture still didn't look like mine.

    As I reminded you back then there are many pieces to the puzzle, and they all need to be there to make up a perfect picture at the end, you were running an old £150 Tosh DVD player with a Deuce scaler.

    Following my most recent visit you now have a Crystalio1 and Phillips 963....big improvement eh? but as I said then you need to frame that screen and shield it from the big expanse of white wall it was hanging against.

    Also I need to remind you of the awfull video cable feeding your PJ.... three lots of adaptors/joiners and cables feeding your PJ is not a good plan at this level, it's another bottleneck and a Bandwidth restrictor.

    Plus there are the Marquee board upgrades, so still more to do yet, GT17 lenses, better screen etc, the road to Audio/Video Nirvanna is either a long one or at the very least an expensive path....but always worth it in the end.

    Glad you are enjoying it, my room is my weak link, and for once for me, a compromise, having just come back from Telford,Manchester and Rossendale, each of those guy's had the dark walls and ceilings (dedicated room's of course, lucky blighters), it makes a big difference and will as you so rightly point out make a huge difference for just a tin of paint or few quids worth of material.

    James
     
  22. Peter Parker

    Peter Parker
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    I had grey walls in my room and although they neutralised any reflections I found that with the screen right up against the wall the ANSI contrast (contrast measured when displaying white and black at the same time) was quite low.

    Moving the screen down and away from the wall improved it further, and the blacking out the first 6 feet of wall and ceiling with felt speaker cloth from the screen doubled the ANSI contrast. The difference is quite visible.

    I have speakers which are close to the screen and they are causing some light spill back onto the screen, so by covering those with black felt will increase the measurable ANSI still further (you can see the difference in real time by covering them with black felt and uncovering them again).

    The best CRTs have around 125:1 ANSI contrast, and a room with white walls can easily reduce that by half, so the darker you can get the room the better. If you have a light meter you can find the maximum ANSI of your pj (cover the screen in black felt and that should eliminate most of the room reflections if you have total light control) and then get the room to the stage where you are getting the maximum reading at the screen without it being covered. When you are getting identical readings to what the pj is capable of in ideal conditions, you then know you can't improve upon it any further.

    Gary.
     
  23. cosaw

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    Thanks James and Gary for your input. This is all good stuff and very worthwhile considering when building good foundations for any home cinema.

    If I ever manage to get an all black room the next step up would be to get everyone to wear black Ninja suits to realise that last 0.25% of shadow detail!
     
  24. crteaman

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    Cosaw, rest asssured I will be there in the total blackness, having adorned my Ninja suit, Katana and wakisashi in hand ready to cut down the first man to mention the words.....Fixed Panel :D

    James
     
  25. Barcoing Mad

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    There is absolutely nothing wrong with the room James has chosen for his Capri Ultra. Nearby sink, the cistern refills quietly and the bog roll is within easy reach.
     
  26. crteaman

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    Knew I could draw you out somehow John, now fancy calling my fancy case a Capri Ghia, I prefer the term Buggatti Veyron, oh alright it's P...s enhancement at it's worst....Jowett javelin then.:D

    James
     
  27. crteaman

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    Furthermore, the sink is handy to P.... in whilst I ladle Glycol out of the loo....:)

    james
     
  28. Barcoing Mad

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    And there we have it... a mental image of James ladling a thick, sticky liquid out of a bunged up bog, being careful not to drip any on the magazine rack of 'Nuts' back issues wedged in with an already heavily stained copy of Jeremy Clarkson's latest paperback.
     
  29. Boy Lex

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    Yeah you also need a shelf with black shoe polish that your audience will use to black out their faces and a load of sunglasses so that the irises of the eyes don't reflect anything... oh hang on...:rolleyes:
     
  30. Alaric

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    Hi There,

    The majority of my room is painted in a flat matt Dulux 6000N, which IIRC Gary here got Dulux to match to Kodak's 18% gray test card way back on the news groups.

    Its a nice dark gray that isn't too overpowering yet disapears to black with the lights down. An ideal ceiling colour as it doesn't lower the room heights perception as much as black does.

    The decorative/sound absorbing mdf paneling and cable hiding boxing is Ice Storm 4, which while a shade lighter than the 6000N gives some definition and once some stone like paint effects are added should darken down a bit further.

    The screen wall is an acoustic screen right across, so beyond the white screen it is made from black speaker material, seeing its somewhat light transparent, any stray light just vanishes (Behind the screen is also dark, either 6000N or black, can't recall which - Though i will probably trial some velvet as sound absorbancy).

    The screen itself is a Danzian fabric which is also backed with black speaker cloth as it was a little transparent and while i painted the screen frame i didn't want to be able to see it and the cloth makes it invisable.

    I want to construct some velvet edge acoustic curtains which i can draw and some ballenced velvet edged horizontal drapes as i would like to mask the screen, but i don't want to mask the sound....

    Home cinema, particularly with modest budget constraints, is very much a ballencing act, there is often a trade off between one ideal and another and its quite where your own opinions lie that end up defining your room.


    Cya,
    Lee
     

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