Maximum recommended screen size for my projector?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Stephen Heidt, Aug 1, 2003.

  1. Stephen Heidt

    Stephen Heidt Auditioning

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    Looking for some expert insight from people that may have already tackled this question.

    Here's the necessary background info that I can think of:
    Sanyo PLV-70
    Room size of 16'W x 22'L x 9'H
    Considering seating rows at approx. 20' and 15' distance from the screen
    Dedicated HT room (completely darkened, no ambient light)
    Usage - 80% DVD's / 20% Sports

    I am interested in determining how large of a screen I can go for with this projector. I am interested in getting as much of an immersion feeling as possible. However, I have not seen any specs on the maximum screen size for this projector before video degradation. I know that it is a somewhat personal opinion regarding what size the picture begins to visually degrade. However, I was just looking for your guys' rough estimate. I was thinking about somewhere near a 150" diagonal 16:9 screen, but since I have not found a HT store around here with that large of a screen running a similar machine, I'm not sure if that is too big for the PLV-70 to be able to maintain a high level of quality video.

    I know that the brightness of the projector will play a very large role, and the PLV-70 is a pretty strong and bright machine. Although I have not heard of anyone who has physically seen the new Optoma H76, how different do you think that machine would be in its maximum allowable screen size, since it is a DLP and not as bright as the PLV-70?

    Also, my friend is also currently having a house built with a dedicated HT room. It will be a similar size to mine (listed above). However, he was thinking about getting a nice used CRT FP. I thought I remembered reading something that mentioned that CRT's are usually not very good for much over a 100" diagonal screen, due to their lower light output. Does anyone know if this is true, or what do you think the maximum size would be on a unit like the Sony G70?

    Thanks for any insights, especially from people who are using these FP's in their set-ups.

    -Stephen
     
  2. David Giles

    David Giles Stunt Coordinator

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    Stephen,

    I haven't personally seen the PLV-70's image, but everything I've heard about it leads me to believe that you'd certainly be happy with the picture at a seating distance of around 1.8 times the screen width. At your minimum seating distance of 15', you could have about a 118" diagonal screen and meet the 1.8 x width criteria. Some people like to use a more immersive multiple of 1.5 x width. Using 1.5x, at your 15' seating, you could have about a 138" diagonal. Of course if the 20' seating area is more important to you, you could have a full 150" screen and meet the 1.8 criteria (but then the front seats would be at about 1.4).

    Personally, if it were me, I'd go for the 150"! You're almost guaranteed to love it from the 20' seating, and most likely from the 15' too. Less-than-picky types (like most of your guests will probably be) will LOVE it from the front row.

    Forgive me if you've already calculated all this for yourself. If not, you might also want to check out Chris Collin's Viewing Distance Calculator

    David Giles
     
  3. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

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    Neil Joseph
    I would go with a 120" 16x9 screen personally which would be a nice balance considering the type of projector (you would still get great brightness at that screen size).

    Are you going to make the screen yourself or buy one?
     
  4. Matthew Todd

    Matthew Todd Second Unit

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    The G70 is a good 8" CRT. I'm setting up an Ampro 3600P (which is roughly comparable to the G70) with an 84" wide screen (about 100" 16:9 diagonal). You could go as wide as 96" or even wider (although most wouldn't recommend it with the G70). I know of at least one person using an 8" CRT on a 144" wide (diagonal is even more) 2.35 screen who is happy with it.

    I'm going with 84" wide because I have heard that if you go much bigger, there is quite a difference in the realism of the picture when you compare the two, although it seems that without seeing them both, most could be happy with either.


    Matt

    EDIT TO ADD LINK: Here's an interesting page explaining some of the difference in brightness specs between CRT and digital projectors.

    http://www.barco.com/projection_syst...ces/advice.asp
     
  5. Stephen Heidt

    Stephen Heidt Auditioning

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    David, Thanks for the advice. I had not seen the 1.5/1.8 viewing multiple before.

    Neil, I originally planned on buying a screen. However, after checking out the multiple threads with countless reams of examples of people building their own, I admit I am intrigued by that idea. I saw your screen that you built with the formica and it turned out really nice. The screen shots look like the quality is still easily there on your 120".

    Matt, I appreciate your CRT experiences. My fried and I were originally thinking that if he went the CRT route, he probably wouldn't be completely happy with much bigger than a 100-110" diagonal screen. Just looking for a little validation. [​IMG]


    After seeeing all of the responses, I'm now thinking that I probably will want to set my HT up with a slightly smaller screen than I was first thinking, like maybe somewhere in the low-130" range. That way, even if I have a larger group over and bring a chair or two in to put right in front of that 15' viewing distance row, it won't be too overpowering to watch it from a range of about 10-11'. And I figure that even with a screen size around 133" diagonal, the 20' away seats would still have a viewing angle of just under the 30 degrees that many HT owners strive for as a minimum. Just so many options to consider! [​IMG]
     

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