RPTV vs. Projector? Aesthetics

Discussion in 'Home Theater Projects' started by Chuck Bogie, Feb 2, 2004.

  1. Chuck Bogie

    Chuck Bogie Second Unit

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    Here in a little while, I'm going to be moving into a new house. So, here's my quandary... I'm going to be making a dedicated room in the basement, and I'm trying to decide between a 65" Hitachi and something on the order of an Epson Home 10 (but not nailed down on brands/hardware at all).

    I'm considering price (would like to keep budget under $3,000 - and I am considering cost of replacement bulbs), but I'm also considering screen size (I'll probably do three rows, all sofas, with the rear two on risers), and general aesthetics. I'll be able to control the lighting, so a dimmer projector may still be doable. What do you guys think?

    I'm leaning toward a projector, since that'll let me put the screen on a wall, use a curtain, and things will be more "movie like," but at the same time, I lean toward the RPTV for more "durability," less hassle, etc...
     
  2. Tommy G

    Tommy G Screenwriter

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    Definitely go the front projector route. You are in a great situation where you are dedicating a basement room to HT and it is yet to be built. The Z2 http://www.projectorcentral.com/proj...m?part_id=2239 can be had now for under $2K. Aesthetically, this would also be more pleasing as it is small and can be put on a shelf on the back wall or mounted from the ceiling. I have a FP and did it after my basement was built and love it. The wife loves the fact that it is more hidden than a 65" bulky TV.
     
  3. Chuck Bogie

    Chuck Bogie Second Unit

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    The orientation of the room is still up in the air (haven't framed yet)... I'm guessing, however, that I'm likely to have it 14-16' wide, and about 20-24' long... Planning on an installation of cabinets along the lower part of the wall, bookshelves above the cabinets, and a bar in the rear, with the projector above the bar. If I've got a 21' throw to the front wall...

    RPTV is just seeming so much simpler...
     
  4. Dan

    Dan Stunt Coordinator

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    I did the same thing with a room in my basement (we just moved in a month ago). My room is a windowless 18' wide x 27' deep . My experience has dictated that since I'm about 12' from the screen (plus about 1.5' for the TV)I've got only about 12 more feet to play with in the back-- my concern was having the speakers too far back (which they'd have to be to incorporate another row). Your room may be even smaller with the cabinets, etc.

    You may have this all thought out, so I don't mean to second guess you-- it sounds like our roooms are very similar.
     
  5. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    If your intention is to watch movies then do front projection and keep a small TV for .... TV viewing. Your basement, I assume is light controlled, and will be perfectly suited for front projection and if your intention is to have 3 rows of seating then the larger screen will be more effective.

    Moved to HT Construction/Interiors.
     
  6. Chuck Bogie

    Chuck Bogie Second Unit

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    I may be getting too ambitious... Figuring 100" for the screen. Sofa 1's back will be 8' from the screen, Sofa 2's back 14'... That'd require Sofa 3 to be 20' (figuring 3' separation, 3' sofa). I'd also like to have a row of stools in front of the bar, so let's add at least another 4'... Hmmm... Of course, the sofas will likely end up closer together. I'm planning, however, on putting a low and narrow munchie/beverage table behind each of the two front sofas, but my design won't get in the way of feet.

    Also just realized that I haven't figured out how to add in the surround back speaker(s)... Can't do a single in the center because of the projector, so it'll be a pair flanking the projector - gotta isolate 'em for vibration...
     
  7. Chuck Bogie

    Chuck Bogie Second Unit

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    Oh yeah - figuring to have the room be 14-16' wide in floor size - after the cabinets and bookcases are built. Going to stash all the electronics by the bar, along with the entrance and a half bath (or halfway down on the side, if I have to hang the projector). Existing plumbing will dictate somewhat...
     
  8. Luitz

    Luitz Stunt Coordinator

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    If yer getting a built in Vacuum? Get the guy to run a pipe from the stereo euipment location upto where u want to hang it.
    Get electrition to wire a outlet near the Pipe the vacuume guy did on the ceiling.
    Prewire for a 7.1 system. Front main and center can be left out.
    While yer at it make a 8cubic foot box somewhere for some subs as a stand or in the ground.
    Prewire some cat5 from where ur pc will be to stereo.
    Cover all with blank wall plates till needed.
     
  9. MikeWh

    MikeWh Second Unit

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    Chuck,

    You'll need to do some serious research on projectors (and the other aspects of HT design, for that matter). I know you're just starting to think this through, but there are many interdependancies in the proper design of an HT. You'll need to look at each aspect-- video, audio, seating, lighting, etc. as a complete system. Each individual aspect can create a limitation on the others.

    To start-- I think you'll be very limited by your current design for a 100" (wide or diag?) screen with a throw of 21'. Certainly, the Epson Home 10 can't do that (the Hitachi Home-1 can at least come close-- about 20' @ 100" wide). My guess is that you'll ultimately have to place the pj around 12-15 feet. For example, assuming you're talking 100" diagonal, then the Home 10 would require placement between 8.4 and 13' from the screen. This obviously impacts seating design.... especially if you're planning for risers.

    Believe me, it's a long road to working out some of your design kinks, but eventually, you'll give and take until you are happy with the results.

    BTW, back to your original question--- Go with front projection. I'm happy I got rid of my 50" RPTV of 12 years. I'll never go back. [​IMG]
     
  10. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Dedicated room? Don't even consider an RPTV. Absolutely no reason.
     
  11. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    I am sort of wishing I would've went FPTV in my rec room. I have a Toshiba 50HDX82 and the picture is great, however, I have this monolith taking up about 8 square ft of floor space when I could just have a projector taking up a few inches of head room.
     
  12. Curt Luther

    Curt Luther Stunt Coordinator

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    I would not even consider RPTV. The front projectors have come down is cost so much and the picture is better than ever! I just ordered my first FP(Sanyo Z2) and cannot wait for it. I still have to order a screen ( check out Carada).
    My room is not ready yet for the screen drywall is just painted. You won't regret going with FP.
     
  13. Torgny Nilsson

    Torgny Nilsson Second Unit

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    I also strongly recommend a front projector. I got a BenQ 8220, a ceiling mount, a 100" Da-Lite screen, and a 25' component cable for just under the $3,000 price range you mentioned.

    To get a 100" image, the projector would have to be mounted 12 feet from the screen, as mine is. But it is very, very quiet and it is no problem sitting under it or behind it.

    But I would very strongly recommend that you dump the idea of putting a first row 8' from your screen. If you want a 100" screen, you don't want anyone sitting any closer than 150" or 200" from the screen (1.5 to 2 times the screen size) or they won't get the best image. And that applies to any projector.

    And check out the thread on what people would have done differently with their home theaters if they did it over again. It can save you a lot of pain later.
     
  14. MikeWh

    MikeWh Second Unit

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    I respectfully disagree with this. I'm beginning to hate this "1.5 to 2 times rule." The "best" image is highly subjective, and different projectors perform better than others at various distance/screen width ratios. I certainly agree that the "rule" is an excellent starting point, but there are several factors that invariably determine the "optimum distance" for the individual viewer.

    Here's a recent discussion on this:
    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...postid=2010406
     
  15. Wes

    Wes Screenwriter

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    Three rows and a bar in a 24' space will be quite crampped, My theater is 12'x24' with two rows (and two bean bags upfront). (See my site)

    definitely do not go RPTV, make it a real theater you will be much happier! Hang the PJ from the ceiling and get it out of the way so you do not have to compromise on speaker positioning.

    Good luck!

    Wes
     
  16. Chuck Bogie

    Chuck Bogie Second Unit

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    Oh... FWIW, the "bar" will be a separate "room" and will open into the theater room only across the counter.
     
  17. Roger Young

    Roger Young Extra

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    Chuck,

    First, I also highly recommend a Front Projection system, IMHO the reason that RPTVs so dominate the market is that most customers don't even know there is another option, and stores like Best Buy and Circuit City generally don't have any projectors set up to demo, sometimes the only projectors are in the computer dept.

    A couple of points;

    1. First a quick thanks to Christian C for his wonderful Viewing distance calculator

    2. Using Chris's viewing distance calculator (http://www.myhometheater.homestead.c...alculator.html) for a viewing distance of 13 feet, with a 65 inch rptv you would have a viewing angle of 20.6 degrees.

    SMPTE recommends 30 degrees, THX recommends 36 degrees and says the minimum viewing angle is 26 degrees. You are way short of that. You would need to sit between 7.3 and 10.2 feet to achieve these goals.

    2. Front projection gives you more room and lots of options. The space it takes to have a rptv is huge, and when it is off, it is still large. A front projection is much smaller and when it is off can even be pulled up into the ceiling or wall.

    3. If you get a widescreen rptv and watch 4x3 material on it, you have two choices, risk burning in marks on the sides or the tv will make everybody will look like they gained 30 pounds. Now that may not be a bad thing with regards to some of the current hollywood stars our there today. Neither is an issue with fptv.

    Good luck with your project.
     
  18. Robert G

    Robert G Stunt Coordinator

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    I would also go with FP. I have a dedicated room and wish I had a FP. I bought my 65" RPTV about year before I bought a house with a dedicated HT therefore I could not justify replacing it so soon. I have had the RPTV calibrated and the picture is great but I still wish I had a FP. When upgrade time comes you can bet that I will be going with a FP.
     
  19. MikeWh

    MikeWh Second Unit

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    This comes up quite often here. I hate to rehash it, but there are many people new to the forum, who may have never seen this before, so here I go--

    The THX spec (for movie theaters) actually says:
    "The recommended audience viewing angle for the Cinemascope image (2.39:1) from the farthest seat in the auditorium is 36 degrees. The minimum acceptable angle is 26 degrees."
    http://www.thx.com/mod/techlib/cinemacertification.html
    http://www.cinemaequipmentsales.com/athx2.html

    This is for the farthest seat and for a wwiiiddde Cinemascope movie. If a movie theater used this spec, sitting anywhere closer to the screen would provide an angle greater than 36° (and this would still be acceptable, per the spec).
     
  20. Chad Anson

    Chad Anson Second Unit

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    I have a 120" diagonal 16:9 screen (approximately 100" wide). My first row is right at 1.5x the width and I don't think I'd want to be much closer -- not because of any technological issues, but simply because the picture would be too big. For the same reason, I don't like to sit in the front few rows of an actual movie theater.

    Having gone from a RPTV to a FPTV, there is no comparison in the level of immersion and enjoyment. FPTV wins hands down.
     

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