Front Projector questions.

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Craig John, Jul 9, 2003.

  1. Craig John

    Craig John Auditioning

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    I'm seriously considering a FP, possibly the NEC HT1000 or the Sony VLP HS10. While I don't have any experience with FP's, I have been into HT for a LONG time! My current TV is a 1987 Pioneer SP 501, one of the "original" 50" RP TV's, (that still looks spectacular, I might add).

    If I want to watch a Sunday afternoon football game on the FP, how much light do I need to block out of the room? I have "room darkening" blinds on the door and windows, but they don't make the room completely black. Also, I have friends over to watch the game regularly and it would be a little wierd to sit in a totally dark room with a bunch of guys watching a football game. You would hardly be able to find your beer. Anyway, what is the maximum amount of light a FP will tolerate?

    If the projector is located behind your seating position, do you need to aim the remote control backwards to change inputs? (That would be awkward).

    Since a FP mounts relatively distant from the source components, it will require some cabling. I have several cabling questions:

    DVI Inputs. What is the longest length a DVI cable can be? Also, how does one switch DVI sources, such as an HD DirectTV receiver and a DVI enabled DVD player.

    Component Video Inputs. What is the longest length a component video cable can be? Are there any interference problems with lights or electrical cables?

    RGB Inputs. What is the longest length an RGB cable can be? For you guys with computers hooked to your Fp's, can the computer signal be "boxed" in a PIP window? Can you mix different signal types in the PIP window, i.e., DTV and computer, etc.

    Are there any other installation concerns I should know about?

    MY room is an LEDE room that will need some significant modifications to incorporate the FP and screen. I'm thinking about a 106" Draper Clarion Screen using HiDef Grey material. My seating distance will be about 14' from the screen and the projector will be ceiling mounted about 12' from the screen. My Klipsch HT speakers will be on stands on either side of the screen with the center channel mounted below it. Is there any problem having the speakers positioned somewhat "in front" of the screen? My speakers have a rear passive radiator and can't be placed on the wall. Would I be better off mounting the screen out from the wall far enough to let the speakers be in the same "plane" as the screen?

    Sorry for all the questions, but I really appreciate the help. If I'm going to do this, I want to do it write, (oops, right).

    Thanks!
    Craig
     
  2. RAF

    RAF Lead Actor

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    Lots of (good) questions, Craig. I'll start the ball rolling (although this ball is probably going to be traveling for quite some time.)

    While the darker the room the better, this is not quite as important with the new breed of projectors as before. Now that the lumens have increased the need for total darkness has diminished. You can now keep from spilling your beer!

    I would suggest auditioning whatever projectors you are considering to see what the "light tolerances" are.

    A lot of your other concerns depend on the projector you end up with (although some things are universal). On the cabling, I've got 50 foot runs for my RGB, composite, component and S-Video (not using DVI yet) and the only one I've amplified (in-line amp) is S-Video. I probably could have gotten away without the amp ($140 or so) but it also provided additional S-Video outputs to feed a few other things.

    As to speaker placement, I've found it's always a good idea to place the front speakers about 2 feet in front of the front wall, no matter what the design. If you look at my website (link in my signature) you'll see that I not only have a screen, but still have my Pioneer Elite Pro-75 RPM (13 years, still going strong!) behind the screen.

    Now to the projector-specific questions. I'm currently using a Runco CL-710 DLP projector and used to have a Sony VW10HT LCD projector.

    By the numbers:
    • With both projectors it was not necessary to point the remote behind me. The signals bounced off the screen just fine. Of course, it might be different with another projector.
    • MY Runco has separate DVI and RGB (HDTV) inputs as well as component (interlaced) input for DVD) and S-Video and composite (LD). It is a breeze to switch sources with no problem at all. My Sony did not have DVI input so this was not possible. But other sources could be switched easily.
    • The Runco has PIP and PBP (picture by picture) where you can watch one digital source (RGB progressive or DVI) and one analog source (everything else) simultaneously. Works like a charm. I can watch HDTV while "watching" a concert DVD, for example. You can also "watch" a computer while watching a DVD. I'm using PIP more than I thought I would. The Sony did not have this option. Once again, projector specific.
    Your other installation concerns are covered, to a large extent at my HT web site (although your installation will have issues of their own since no two installations are identical.) I suggest you look through my site. It is quite extensive and covers CONSTRUCTION, EQUIPMENT and a lot of OTHER HT issues.

    And if you need more assistance, just ask away. You've come to the right place. Let me also point out that we have CONSTRUCTION SECTION on the HTF HERE where some of the building issues might be more appropriately addressed. However, since the bulk of your concerns are with your FP, I see no problem starting here
     
  3. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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  4. Craig John

    Craig John Auditioning

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    Thanks for the very informative replies! I think the most appropriate suggestion is that I go audition the FP's I'm considering to get a better handle on their ambient light tolerances. I'll need to reseach the High-end Video shops in Philly and NY to see if I can audition these units somewhere close by.

    It sounds like the cabling issues are probably non-issues, other than installing the new cables. Cable lengths and spurious interfernce don't seem to be a problem. The only remaining issue in this area is DVI switching. DVI cables can be any length you're willing to pay for. However, multiple DVI sources still appear to be a problem. I haven't seen any projectors with multiple DVI inputs and I can't find any DVI switching systems out there. Is anyone aware of any devices that allow switching of multiple, (even just 2) DVI sources?

    That multi-format PIP sounds really cool. Having internet access and TV on the same screen, (watching a football game while accessing ESPN.com or NFL.com) sounds like it would be awesome.

    I'm sure I'll have a TON of questions as I proceed. Ain't it great to have such a wonderful resource as the internet and forums like this to help find the info you need!

    Thanks!

    Craig
     

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