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What screens are people using?

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by pragmatic, Jun 16, 2005.

  1. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    I'm looking to get a Decent projector screen for use with my X1, and am wondering what you guys are using and maybe why you picked the one you did.
     
  2. The_Munter

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    I got the road warrior from draper. which is a pull up portable - very good if you have a small living room. I think the thing with screens is that the bottom of the range entry level ones have most of the money spent on the mechanics of it. it's not until you start spending thousands that you'll notice a difference between a matt white wall and screen material.
     
  3. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    Are you saying thats its probably not worth bothering with cheap screens, something like blackout blinds will do the trick?
     
  4. The_Munter

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    I wouldn't bother with a screen if you are gonna have a fixed one. if you need to move it around, set it up just for when you wanna get the projector out then you could consider it but the screen won't really improve your image. painting a section of wall white and giving it a black border to increase perception of contrast will do just the same job as a 500 quid screen. But, then if you're gonna spend more than that, maybe a grand then it will start showing some improvements on a matt white wall. the more expensive screens have a reflective fibre embedded into the white "paint" which gives you more contarst....

    ...hope this helps


    ...what does anyone else think?
     
  5. jw250

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    I think that there is a little difference between a matte white wall and even a cheap screen like a Draper Luma. If the property isn't very new, the chances are that the wall isn't flat and the texture of paint on plaster which has been applied with a roller or brush for example is different from that of a screen so won't reflect efficiently. Also, white paint is not the same white as the white on projection screens so colour and contrast is different too. If you are to use a wall, make sure it is really flat, and if I were you use something like 'screen goo' which is projector paint. Available in white and grey for DLPs etc. About £100 for a small tub. I can't remember the website add. One thing I will say about cheap roll-up screens like the Draper is that after a year or two of rolling the thing up and down, kinks appear on the screen (which gradually go if left hanging for 30mins) which can be a bit annoying. Expensive screens like the Stewart's have special motors and rolling mechanisms to prevent this. Cheap screens won't last and last as they can warp after a few years. Expensive screens have tension wire at the sides to pull the screen 'flat' which does make a difference. Warped screens are horrible to watch. Black borders is a must for perceivable contrast, this makes a big difference. It may be worth buying a screen just for that. I have had a Draper Luma (80" diag. and cost about £160) for about 2 years, I used to use a wall and am happier with the screen. But is beginning to warp.

    Someone mentioned money going on the mechanism and not the material at cheaper prices, which I agree with. I also agree that you need to spend over a grand to start seeing the real benefits of engineered screen materials. Spend no more than £200 for the black borders, thats what I say! Sorry for the long-winded post!
     
  6. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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  7. jw250

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    This screen is a 4:3 I think - its 'square' not widescreen. I assume your projector is a 16:9 widescreen model? I really wouldn't buy an old shape 4:3 unless all you were watching on it was old pan&scan vhs. I'm almost positive that the InFocus X1 is 800x600 - a widescreen ratio. I can see from the link it doesn't mention the ratio of the screen. Guess you have to be a bit careful.
     
  8. jw250

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    Just checked up on your X1. I think its like my Sim2 HT200DM. A 4:3 DLP chip but with a widescreen mode. Buy a widescreen screen but check the manual to read up on the 16:9 mode if you haven't already, it should explain what it does, my proj. has 4:3 and 16:9 modes and the res changes accordingly. I have never used the 4:3 mode.
     
  9. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    The x1 is 4:3 default but does have a 16:9 mode, which i do use for movies. But games (i.e. Xbox or PC) are 4:3 and as it's a pull down I could just pull down a wide screen size.

    Of course I take your point and a 16:9 may be better especially for the future when I upgrade.

    The thing is I think £153 is extortionate for a bit of cloth and i haven't seen any other branded screen come any ware near this price either 4:3 or 16:9 (actually I saw this one advertised for £350 exc vat on one website).

    I suppose you probably get what you pay for and its a bit of a one time purchase if you get it right, so paying more for a better one might be worth it and not the false economy of buying a cheap one.
     
  10. jw250

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    I would still go for a 16:9, you can set your PC to widescreen res when connected to your projector (video card permitting) and the next gen of consoles (PS3, Xbox360) are certainly 16:9. Alot of xbox games are 16:9 already I think?

    Don't forget the black bordering too; if you project a 16:9 image onto a 4:3 screen you're image will either go right up to the metal casing (if you partially pull down the screen) or you'll have loads of white screen picking up all that loose light that the projector puts out around the image, effectively reducing your contrast. I think you'll be using way more 16:9 than 4:3 within the next year or so. As I said, I bought a Draper Luma 80" diagonal for about £160. There must be someone selling similar at a similar price. Good luck.
     
  11. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    Do you mind if i ask were you got it from because 80 inches is still a decent size, and would probably do me.
     
  12. jw250

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    I can't remember the damned site!! I'll rack my brain for you! It was an www.av...... and the rest is a blur, not much help but i'll have a look for you.
     
  13. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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  14. jw250

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    Ok, found it, but I made a little mistake - it costs more than I remember: £200. I must have been remembering the price of the 69". Still a good price in my opinion. You might need the bracket too which is £30, althought there are fittings included, hopefully your room won't need the bracket.

    http://www.av-sales.co.uk/html/draper_luma_screen.html
     
  15. jw250

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    I've just noticed that the 92" is only 83p more than the 82.5". ?? How bizarre.
     
  16. davehk

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    I have a 92" 16:9 Draper Baronet (same material as the Luma but electric) - fits nicely in the bay window and the housing is all but invisible behind the lintel when it's retracted. Excellent brightness with an 1100L projector in a darkened room. The black borders do help
     
  17. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    good point, guess that would be a better buy, is the high contrast grey worth the extra?
     
  18. Nic Rhodes

    Nic Rhodes
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    I would recommend a fixed screen where ever possible as these suffer the least problem especially at the good value end. I would ALWAYS recommend a screen over a painted wall, there is a big difference. I would also endorse having a black surround for over spill (velvet). I use a 72 inch Studiotek 130 from Stewart. Think carefully about the gain you need, more isn't necessarily better...
     
  19. Gary Lightfoot

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    The Studiotek 130 from Stewart has probably the most accurate white and gain of a screen of that type. Having seen a 130 against a 1.2 gain Beamax (also a good screen IMHO), you could see the Beamax was ever so slightly pink, whereas the 130 was white.

    Also, in a recent review, the 130 was the only screen that attained it's claimed gain of 1.3, so along with it's lack of colour shift, you can see why Stewart screens are as good as they are. :)

    Gary.
     
  20. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    How many limbs do these cost?
     
  21. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    How many people in your family?
     
  22. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    In other words how many limbs do i have to "spend"?
     
  23. Gary Lightfoot

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    Seriously though, the screen size, actual lumens from your projector and whether or not you have full light control are important factors in choosing the correct screen. Seating distance is also a consideration of the type and resolution of the projector, and you may also have a preference for cinema levels of brightness or tv/plasma levels of brightness. Knowing the above and we can calculate how much light will be reflected off of the screen and if it's enough or too little for your requirements.

    A good flat matt white wall is not a great deal worse than a matt white screen with unity gain. If you need a screen with gain or a grey screen (with gain) then you will start having to consider which manufactured screen will work best for your situation, as well as cost. For the X1 I think a Stewart would be unnecessary, and a cheaper screen or a blackout blind would probably suffice.

    A friend with a pj similar to yours bought one of these and is quite happy with it:

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=5780827383

    There are a few others on ebay so they might be worth a look but a blind of a similar size found localy might be fine for you. What size were you after?

    Gary.
     
  24. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    Thx this is what i was thinking, I have a home made screen but was thinking about after i move from where i am it'll be dismantled thrown away.
     
  25. Stinja

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    7" 4:3 Draper LUMA. Got it free off a guy here (cheers again!), and does a good job. It's not perfect, and got a ripple when i moved as the ape-men didnt hadle it well, but decent.

    I was hoping for one of those "Black screens" which were in development, but they are apparently a bit dissapointing. Had a blackout blind and its ok, but a proper screen does give a decent improvement.
     
  26. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    Thats good to know.
    I am torn between the black out blind route, maybe putting some black matterial/painting it a border.

    As its an investment of £35 or £150/200 for a cheap screen.
     
  27. KoThreads

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    Just reading through this thread and by coincidence I ordered one from EBay yesterday as my home made 80" diagonal screen which was about 8 months old went all out of shape (goo painted on thin ply on an old wall and held with screws) The heat over the last week has wrecked it, bowed in and out like water damage. I don't want to build another so I thought I would look on Ebay. At £65 for a 200cm x 190cm screen with fittings and quality bits it looks too good to be true, or maybe it's a bit of a bargain. But now I can hang it in the bay where I wanted one to be in the first place.
     
  28. Gary Lightfoot

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    I'll be interested in your opinion of it, especialy as a comparison to Goo.

    Gary.
     
  29. pragmatic

    pragmatic
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    Yea tell us how it compares and what the quality is like.
     
  30. KoThreads

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    Screens just arrived by DHL, faster than I expected.

    Cloth is thick and heavy with just an off-white to grey tint to it.

    Metal roller. mirror steel not chrome.

    Nowhere near as lightweight as I expected it to be.

    2 L-brackets, 2 screws, 1 endcap with metal pin for the far end and a strung endcap for the other, one part stationary when fixed and a drum type clip that snaps in it with a looped nylon cord. I've already pulled mine apart as the loop only had a two foot drop, so I had to nip over the road and buy a 5m (only sells metric) length of the same cord as it'll be 9'6" high on my ceiling and I didn't want to have to keep reaching up to pull it up or down.

    It also had a length of white faced mellomane, sorry if that's not how you spell it, which threads through the bottom of the screen. It comes with no instructions but it's not rocket science.

    And that's it, all looks very good quality and strong and came well packaged.

    I was going to put it up when I've got some charge in the drill then I reaiised two things, when the screen will be down it'll be between me and the DVD player, so the remote won't work, the screen lets no light through so IR is out.

    And I've got to resite the PJ as it's on the wrong wall now and that means moving the mains and hoping my component lead is long enough. So it might have to go on a temporary cupboard or something first just to make sure it's upto the job, and I've got to move it away from the screen as I worked out that it's 16:9 diag is around 92". Bigger than my old screen by 12" more than I thought.
     

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