Stewart GrayHawk Screens - Opinions?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jay Mitchosky, Aug 27, 2001.

  1. Jay Mitchosky

    Jay Mitchosky Producer

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 1998
    Messages:
    3,729
    Likes Received:
    0
    This new screen technology from Stewart Filmscreen is pretty cool. Called GrayHawk it is designed exclusively for fixed panel projectors. The basis is a gray undercoating and lower screen gain to facilitate better black levels (which continues to be the Achilles' Heel of LCD, DLP, and D-ILA projection technologies). Has anybody had the opportunity to see this screen material in person? It seems like a great idea.
    ------------------
    --Jay
    "No one can hear when you're screaming in digital."
    My Home Theatre Pictures...
    "You're no messiah. You're, you're a movie of the week. You're a ... t-shirt, at best."
     
  2. Kevin Coleman

    Kevin Coleman Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 1999
    Messages:
    495
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have heard it works well. I have read up alot on it over at AVS. Don Stewart himself posts over there. Here is the way he explained. This is from memory and is not an exact quote.
    He said the way it works is by going with a grey screen it darkens the dark areas but also darkens the white areas. The reason this still produces a superior picture as opposed to a white screen is when the lights are off in your theater there is alot of black in your room, but no white. So when you have a white screen with LCD mainly you really notice the blacks not being dark enough becuase you have so much darkness to compare it to in the room. Including the black border around your FP screen especially . But since there is no white in your room that you can see once the lights have been dimmed you can cheat alot easier on white and still get a pleasing picture. So you are sacrificing good whites for good blacks but because of the stuff I mentioned the picture will look better.
    The only caveat I have heard about this screen type is you pretty much need a projector that ouputs at least 1000 lumens or it may produce too dark a picture. but I think all of the newer projectors put out at leadt 1000 lumens nowadays.
    Are you thinking about moving to FP Jay? It is a whole new experience. If you think you have people knocking on your door now to watch movies just wait until you get a FPTV.
    Kevin C. [​IMG]
     
  3. Michael Lee

    Michael Lee Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 1998
    Messages:
    652
    Likes Received:
    0
    I saw GrayHawks in action at the CES and at the HiFi show in Manhattan recently. They were very impressive on all the fixed panel displays, be it Yamaha or Seleco. I have become a Stewart dealer because of this particular product. I will have a 10' diagonal screen in my showroom and I have a 108" GrayHawk sitting in my basement waiting to be installed(12Volt trigger stuff).
    ------------------
    Sound InSight Audio Video
    My Home Theater Pics
    My Equipment List
    My DVD Collection
    My LD Collection
     
  4. Jay Mitchosky

    Jay Mitchosky Producer

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 1998
    Messages:
    3,729
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for the info guys. I went over to AVS and found a bunch of discussions on this screen. Apparently it was first introduced with a gain of .85. It is now at .95, presumably because the former reduced light output too much. All of the reports are very positive. Widescreen Review even uses one in their new reference theater for fixed panel evaluations. My plan would be to use a microperf version as I want to locate the center channel behind the screen (better integration with on-screen action, allows use of same speaker as L/R without interfering with image). That would further limit light transmission, but with the latest projectors that should not be a problem.
    I'm not going FPTV just yet - need to move first. That will almost certainly happen later next year, at which time I will begin to plan for a (hopefully) dedicated theater. It's great to see that LCD and, in particularly, DLP are improving with every generation. D-ILA will start to gain a little ground as well I believe. Given that GrayHawk truly works as well as people say that would certainly help close some of the performance gap vs. CRT, with the added benefit of being able to display in ambient light. My room will have control over this, but some activities (like Super Bowl, PPV boxing, Oscar parties) really don't lend themselves well to a blackened room. [​IMG]
    The nagging question I still have is FPTV or RPTV. Properly calibrated I think that a quality CRT-based 16:9 RPTV will deliver a higher fidelity image compared to the current community of fixed panel projectors within financial reach (the three chip DLPs would be nice, but not at US$50-60K [​IMG] ). However, one cannot argue that a big screen is the path towards a true cinematic experience. What I need is unlimited funds and the decision would be simple: stacked Runco DTV-1200s with a Faroudja DVP-5000 scaler. [​IMG]
    ------------------
    --Jay
    "No one can hear when you're screaming in digital."
    My Home Theatre Pictures...
    "You're no messiah. You're, you're a movie of the week. You're a ... t-shirt, at best."
    [Edited last by Jay Mitchosky on August 27, 2001 at 10:28 PM]
     
  5. TonyG

    TonyG Auditioning

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2001
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    0
    Jay,
    We tested a GreyHawk sample at work and the results were very impressive. While we were all sceptical going in, all four of us agreed that the GrayHawk was vastly superior to our current screen for use with our old LCD projector. Our primary video test was the scene in Ben Hur where Miriam discovers that Judah's sister and mother are leppers. The amount of shadow detail in this scene is a nightmare for older LCD technology. The GreyHawk actually allowed the elements of the picture which were formerly an unidentifiable grey mess to be easily seen and enjoyed.
    Another positive that I wasn't prepared for is that the GreyHawks advantage seems to be even more pronounced with ambient light in the room. Don't get me wrong: the picture is better with little to no ambient light. However, when light was introduced, our matte DaLite screen washed out much more quickly than the GreyHawk.
    For computer presentations we were split. The DaLite produced more light output, but the colors seemed less natural. Our presentations make extensive use of blacks and the GrayHawk clearly crushed the DaLite on dark slides with a seeming increase in contrast.
     
  6. Jon_Mx

    Jon_Mx Agent

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2000
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Greyhawks are excellent screen for many projectors, but are a bit pricey. Stewart's screens are very well built and you get what you pay for. Da-lite offers a grey screen which is cheaper, but only has a 0.8 gain. I believe Da-lite is working on a higher gain grey screen to compete in the near future.
     
  7. John-D

    John-D Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2001
    Messages:
    198
    Likes Received:
    0
    As always, DIYers have the option of painting their screens grey and have been reported success with their projects. Guys over at AVS now have a good source for arguably the best paint for the job.
    ------------------
    The things we own end up owning us
     

Share This Page