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Who's using a 2.35:1 screen?

Discussion in 'Projectors, Screens & Video Processors' started by Gary Lightfoot, Jun 4, 2005.

  1. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    I've posted something similar in the screens forum, but as I'm after thoughts from existing owners I thought this forum wouldbe better suited, especialy as it gets mor traffic.

    Due to limitations in my loft, I was wondering if switching to an 8ft wide 2.35:1 screen from my 7ft wide 16:9 screen was a viable option.

    Here's my other thread:

    http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?p=1715452#post1715452&conly=

    TIA

    Gary.
     
  2. Mark_a

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    I think it would be a matter of what you intend to project on it. Having a screen that matched your output with a black border is supposed to increase 'perceived contrast' whatever that really means. So if you get a 2.35:1 screen and then mainly project 16:9 stuff you'll be getting white bars down the sides.

    Then again, if you get a 16:9 screen and mostly project 2.35:1 stuff you'll get white bars top and bottom. Without motorised masks of some sort you can't really win 100% of the time.

    Regards

    Mark
     
  3. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    In the cinema, they use a fixed height variable width system, so the curtains move away and the screen gets wider. In home theater, we tend to use fixed width and variable height. Some people use masking for those moviesand with a 2.35:1 screen you could maks the sides when projecting a 16:9 movie.

    Just trying to find anyone who's using 2.35:1 and how they cope with smaller format movies.

    Gary.
     
  4. homeagain

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    :hiya: Hi Gary. I'm about to build a constant height screen to match either a H78 or HS50, that's replacing the old AE500. I've ordered some more Dalite HCCV material and will attach it to a new ash wood braced frame. The upper and lower borders will be fixed, but the side borders will be in 2 different widths to accommodate 2.35 and 1.78 aspect ratios. The side borders will be fixed with either velcro or press studs for easy switching.
    All this depends on a projector that has enough zoom range and lens shift.
    Some might find this a bit OTT, but with the amount of DVDs presented in 2.35 or even 2.40, it seems ridiculous to have less impact on these true widescreen movies.
    I'll post pics when my home theater Mk.II is finished.
    Cheers, Rob. :smashin:
     
  5. cyberheater

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  6. Louis Mazzini

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    It's interesting that this topic doesn't seem to get covered more often. A projector is the only viewing option that allows the possibility of 'going wide', like in the cinema (before lots of modern multiplexes started letter-boxing, that is) for 2.35:1 films, and yet I think most of us have a fixed 16:9 border around our screens.

    This is something I'm intending to do also. My simple plan (i.e. non-motorised!) involves having a fixed height screen, with vertically hinged doors on each side; when these doors are both 'closed' the screen will be 16:9, and when they're 'open', 2.35:1. Each of these doors would obviously be black on both sides. That's about as far as I've got with the 'design' so far..! This will, as noted above, depend on a PJ with sufficient zoom abilities.

    Of course, the wider picture will lose a little PQ (as it does in the cinema), but I'll cheerfully sacrifice that for the extra impact of the increased width, all fully bordered.

    This also leads to the question of whether either of the high-def disc formats will offer a 16:9 anamorphically compressed 2.35:1 image for those with a PJ/anamorphic lens combination. And, as I understand it, the answer is: No, it won't. Seems to me to be a bit of a missed opportunity to set a new standard for the best possible quality.
     
  7. cyberheater

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    Which is a pity but to be honest. If the source material is 720P or 1080P then cropping top and bottom borders won't make a huge difference in picture quality and will be well worth it for the final result.
     
  8. Murray

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    Hi Gary
    This has been the age old problem and also issues of debate within the cinema industry for years, especially more so today. I was a projectionist for 35 years and the system that most of the older theatres always used was movable side masking, which I believe produces the most dramatic effect. C/scope films are meant to look bigger than 1.85 films! Thats the way the studios intended it to be, 2.35 was the magic process to take over the 1.85 image, that theatres had used for years. The reason why you don't see so much side masking today in modern multiplexs is they are all just oblong boxs with low ceilings and no room to the sides, for side masking to open into. The way they get round that is to just have movable top masking, with keeps the same size (sides) for both formats. What that means is our so called c/scope films which were intended to look LARGER than the 1.85 ends up looking SMALLER, exactly the same thing that we so called home theatre owners end up with too, when we only have a 16.9 screen. A few of the old Cinemas that were very long and narrow also were like todays multiplexs, just having fixed side masking. These were always laughed about by fellow projectionists and always seemed like a huge compromise when viewing a SCOPE movie. We called these places bowling alleys with a postage stamp screen.
    So really if you want the best of both worlds, the answer is to have a larger 2.35 picture than the 16.9 with black masking on all sides. I would say to go for the 2.35 screen with black masking fixed on 4 sides, then only 2 movable sides. I would make these sides just out of a light thin MDF and cover them in black velvet. The both side masks only need to be placed on a very short track (both sides at the top) which would allow them to move only as far down to a 4.3 image. Then you would have the five full formats that even most cinemas didn't even have, 4.3,1.66,1.75,1.85,2.35 all moving out in size from the smallest to the largest. Its that simple and fairly easy to do! Im sure your like me, as most films we see today really are on the 2.35 format, so why not try and keep that as large as possible the way it was intended to be. Really, the way most of us with home cinemas, are not displaying the image the way they were done in the cinemas. Mind you the manufactures still don't give us all the facility do do that easily! :thumbsup:
     
  9. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Homeagain,

    hi Rob, sounds good - I have an H78 at the moment and tomorrow I'll probably have a look at the viability of a 2.35:1 screen with it, and will let you know. Keep me updated on your progress though! Can you let me know how much the Da-Lite screen material was and where you got it from? I'm really after some 1.3 gain for the larger size and Vutec do a Bright White that will fit the bill, but will of course consider alternatives.

    Cyber,

    I've been reading up on the threads there which of course are very informative and helpful. Getting some feedback from UK based people with regards to UK products is always useful as well.

    Louis,

    Keep us updated on how well it all works out. My initial plan is to make a 2.35:1 screen and mask to 16:9 like at the cinema using the same material that covers my screen wall. That should help it blend in more. I'm easily swayed to better ideas though. :)

    Murrey,

    Thanks for the info - I didnt realise that modern multiplexes had become glorified home theater set-ups. Definitely a pity as you rightly say - Scope movies should have the biggest impact overall.

    keep it coming guys, the more the better. :)

    Gary.
     
  10. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Hi Rob,

    A quick look at the Optoma H77 throw calculator (same as H78 and H79) looks like it can just accomodate a 6ft wide (16:9) and 8ft wide (2.35:1) image if the pj is positioned at 13ft from the screen. I'll have a look this afternoon to see if that works out in reality and let you know.

    The HS50 can do it within a range of 8ft 12ins to 10ft 6ins, so has more range and is more flexible for placement. The only concern might be brightness for the 8ft image so a higher gain screen or an anamorphic lens might be needed. I think the HS50 is a lot dimmer than advertised so that might need to be looked into.

    Gary.
     
  11. severnsource

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    Is this really true? Both my local multiplexes, which are out in the sticks and fairly small, so I would think would be representative, have a variable width screen. Saw HHGTTG last week and the sides definitely moved out after the adverts and before the feature and I didn't notice a height change. There are a couple of things taht annoy me though; the quality of the prints doesn't seem very high and the sound is usually too loud and not very good quality. Home cinema can definitely be better in this respect. (Mind you normal cinemas have always had pretty poor sound quality.)

    I like your idea about the adjustable side masking - have to try it when I get a permanent set up. There might be a bit of a problem in that the zoom might not have enough range, I currently do the opposite, try and use the full screen width, but the projector doesn't quite have enough zoom to make a 4:3 image full width.
     
  12. foghorn

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    Gary,

    I take it that your thinking about a 1.3 gain to compensate for the larger viewing area (keeping brightness), will this not make the image brighter than you want for the 16:9 size.

    Ok candidate for stupid idea!

    If you went for a fixed 8 foot 2.35:1 you could run a curtain rail just in front of the screen so when not in use you would cover over the complete screen with black curtain material. Located just in front of the curtain you could hang a 16:9 drop down screen.

    Foghorn
     
  13. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Hi Foghorn,

    Yes - spot on - it's for the little extra brightness needed to keep the image above 12ft lamberts.

    For 16:9, I could add an 0.1 ND filter (less than an ND2 which is 0.3) to reduce brightness, or run 2.35 on high lamp and 16:9 on low. The best solution is to us an anamorphic lens which will use the lamp output from the black bars provided I stretch the 2.35:1 image up to fill the 16:9 panel (replacing black bars with image).

    I'm not sure I'll have enough room for the rail due to the sloping roofline, but it's certainly a good idea. :)

    Gary.
     
  14. PJTX100

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    Gary

    Good thread with some good ideas. Just a couple of thoughts...

    Presumably you'll be in effect widening the screen but your viewing distance will be the same as now. Is there a risk you will see more artefacts?

    You'll be using optical zoom by the looks of it to effect the transition. As well as matching the side borders, how will it work lining up with the top borders as you zoom? Will you need to vertically adjust the image too? If so, will you use optical lens shift?
    ...PJ :)
     
  15. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Hi PJ,

    Exactly right.

    Yes, with the scope screen the viewing distance will be about 1.6 screen width (I'm currently at about 1.7 but can move the seats back a little otherwise I'll be at 1.5), so I'm going to do a test run with blackout cloth and no lens filters to see what it will look like in that respect. With SD material it may be a tad soft, but hopefully because it'll be around 11.8ft lamberts it should give me an idea of what to expect.

    I'll be using lens shift and zoom initialy, but if it works well, I'll get an anamorphic lens for the scope setting to maximise lumens and resolution and do away with the lens shift (though there may be a little shift involved but not as much as without). Either version of anamorphic lens should work - the optical squish, or the optical widen, depending how I implement things, Some trial and error will be involved I think. :)

    I watched Revenge of the Sith yesterday, and sat closer than normal to try and replicate my viewing conditions. Initialy I felt I was too close (and a little too low), but after a while I forgot all about it and just enjoyed the film (yes I did! Which was nice). Apart from the crushed blacks that is, or should I say crushed dark greys. :)

    Gary.
     
  16. spamboy

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    Gary,

    Have you looked at the carada screens? http://www.carada.com

    They do a 2.35:1 fixed screen at a (relatively) sensible price - decent reviews on avsforum too.

    I'm planning to do the same thing too when I finally get my hc completed, I picked up an h200 off the forums a while ago and intend to build a DIY screen of some form (still haven't fully decided what yet) with variable side masking.

    If you want to borrow the h200 to try this out drop me a pm (it's going to be sitting in a box for the next couple of months at the least anyway.)

    SB

    btw. Have you looked at the 2.35 constant height forum on avsforum, all this is done to death (as always with avs) over there. Plenty of people who have done this too.
     
  17. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Hi Spamboy,

    Yes I did funnily enough. Great value product IMHO, and one of the first I looked at. The 1.4 gain material the do made it more appealing, and after asking about it on the avsforums 2.35:1 forum put it at the top of my list. :)

    I'll make one first though and see how it goes (I might even keep it as I've been using a DIY 16:9 for over 4 years now). Many thanks for the offer of a loan of the H200- that will be very appreciated so I'll probably take you up on it as it will make things easier to evaluate. Can you drop me a PM with delivery costs for you to send it to me? I'll PM you back my info and get a cheque out to you.

    Thanks again.

    Gary.
     
  18. spamboy

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    No problem, given that I'm planning to do the same thing, may as well let you try it out first and learn from your mistakes ;)

    PM sent
     
  19. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    LOL. sneaky. :)

    PM'd back.

    Gary.
     
  20. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Well, here's the wood cut to shape for an 8ft wide 2.35:1 screen ratio. I drilled two holes through the top and bottom in the center, and two for the left hand side. I drilled two more at the top and bottom of the right hand side bar. I'll glue and screw them together when I get them all into the loft.

    I'll get the blackout cloth to stretch over it so I should have it up and running by the weekend for testing.

    The wood was £10.95 from Wickes - it's 18mm x 69mm x 2.4m. It's slightly too small for 96ins, so that's why one part is against the side of the top and bottom bars, and the other two are between.

    Gary.
     

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  21. PJTX100

    PJTX100
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    Ah brings back memories! :D

    If I could conveniently move my PJ back 1m or so I'd be joining you!

    Will look forward to your progress reports!...PJ :)
     
  22. Mark_a

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    Wouldn't a couple of diagonals help with possible racking? And I'm sure my old wood-working teacher would have said something about mortise and tenon joints. :) Though personally I use pocket screws these days for such things.

    As a matter of interest, how do you intend to fix the screen material?

    Regards

    Mark
     
  23. stripe

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    Just a little thought regarding this, I was also thinking of building a system to mask off my screen to 2.35:1, but I was kinda put off the idea last night when I was watching a film with subtitles. The subtitles were shown under the picture in the black border.

    Not that I watch alot of foreign movies but it did put a spanner in my plans.
     
  24. spamboy

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    That was quick. Better get that lens off to you, off to the post office now...

    Michael, you can reposition the subtitles with either an htpc or some dvd players (the samsung hd 945 does this for example)
     
  25. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Mark,

    The format of the screen is exactly the same as the 16:9 one I'm currently using, and that has remained as square as it was when I made it over 4 years ago, so that's why I did the same here (it only takes five minutes to cut the wood). I have plenty of wood over so making some diagonal braces would be simple to do if it needs them. I glue and screw the bits together, and maybe that's why it doesn't seem to change shape over time.

    Initialy my 16:9 blackout cloth screen was meant as a temporary measure until I knew what to expect from the projector so I could then buy the size I wanted. It worked well so when I got the HT1000 I just bought some screen material with 1.2 gain to keep the brightness the same as I was used to with the Davis pj I had beforehand. I just wrapped it over the existing cloth so I didn't even have to remove it and it's been like that for over 2 years now.

    To attach the cloth, I just stretch and staple the material to the back of the wood a bit like you would a painters canvas, so it's wrapped around the front and once stretched is quite taught and you can't see the staples. If you want a black border, you can make a frame that fits either around the screen or fixes to the front (which will reduce the visible area).

    Stripe,

    Good point about the sub titles! Fortunately there aren't many movies with them, and as I use HTPC I should be able to get round it. Otherwise I might have to write them down and pass copies along with torches to those watching. :)

    Spamboy,

    Thanks. I'll be getting the blackout cloth today, so hopefully it'll be completed bythis evening. I can then go about fixing it to the wall and repositioning the projector, so by the time the lens arrives, I should be ready for it.

    Gary.
     
  26. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Here's a pic of the screen frame in place against the existing 16:9 screen. I'll strtch/staple the blackout cloth over it tomorrow when the glue has fully dried.

    Gary.
     

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  27. spamboy

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    So you're keeping the screen area roughly the same. I've been wondering about this, whether to build at an optimal 16:9 height or to reduce the 16:9 viewing size to get the optimal 2.35 one.

    I guess you're restricted by the roof though?

    Are you worried about light output? You know that there is an amount of loss caused by the lens - I'd guess 20%
     
  28. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Hi Spammy,

    The area works out roughly the same, but scope movies will obviously be a bit bigger which is how it should be, though not always possible with fixed panel projectors (hence this experiment).

    With 16:9 and 2.35:1 movies, one will be bigger than the other, so I'm going from 16:9 being the biggest, to 2.35:1 being biggest. The roofline is my main restriction, which is why I was limited to a 7ft wide 16:9 screen. I did think of making a cross shape screen that had both ratios in it (a bit like you see in the pic, but one screen with masking), but I think it would be tricky to stretch the material over it without the risk of tearing at the internal corners.

    Light output will drop by just over 20% - if we take 425 lumens from low lamp mode and the area of a 7ft wide 16:9 screen, we end up with 15.4ft lamberts. Multiply that by the gain (1.2) and we get 18.5ft lamberts. I'm using an fl-day lens filter for optical colour correction and that dims the image as well, but for this example I'll stick to basics.

    For an 8ft wide image, the screen area (still calculate for 16:9 because although the black bars are there, it's unused lumens) will equal 36sqr ft into 425 = 11.8ft lamberts. Multiply by 1.2 gain = 14.2 ft lamberts. I'll actualy be using a 1.3 gain material now, so that will give me more brightness and 15.3ft lamberts. If I use high lamp mode that will increase lumens further, or better still, use an anamorphic lens to use all the light in low lamp mode. This will be the best option I think as it removes the black bars light spill, gives a little more brightness and in theory more resolution (albeit extrapolated, not real).

    16:9 mode will now be even brighter still, as being smaller and with a higher gain, it will be 27ft lamberts. An ND2 filter will bring that down to under 14ft lamberts though.

    Lots of experimentation and viewing to do over the next few days. :)

    Gary.
     
  29. chicco

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    thank Gary
    I want it to know for reference.
    I don't know how to access this menu and i will be moviong shortly abroad andit might be useful in the future.
    yhank another time for the prompt response
     
  30. Gary Lightfoot

    Gary Lightfoot
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    Well, just watched Star Wars on the temporary blackout cloth screen, and saw no problems at all, despite being 1.5 times screen width away. It even seemed bright enough despite being only about unity gain, so the proper screen material with gain should be fine.

    Just need to get the anamorphic lens and I'll know for sure then.

    Gary.
     

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