What kind of screen for an LCD projector?

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Monte Montemayo, Aug 14, 2004.

  1. Monte Montemayo

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I went with the Panasonic PT-L500U LCD projector. What kind of screen should I be considering? Recently I went to Circuit City and saw the absolute coolest screen. It was 16:9 with thick black boarders but also had an electric switch to pull down a 4:3 boarder. But I don’t know if it was the right kind of screen surface for my application. Here are the factors: This is in a living room (not dark HT room). I have ambient light from a sliding glass door and from some high sky windows. The room gets fairly dark at night but during the day, it’s a normal lighted living room. What kind of screen should I be thinking of? Thanks everyone!
     
  2. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    You can shop for a screen or do what many people have done. Build your own out of wood and blackout material. Costs less than $50.00 USD and looks awesome. Blackout material can be found at fabric stores.
     
  3. Monte Montemayo

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    ya, i saw a thread here of someone who did that. very tempting. i'm basically a computer geek and not too handy with the tools but i might try.. great suggestion.
     
  4. Monte Montemayo

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I cant find the link to build my own screen. Anyone have a few webpages I can view? I'd like to give this a try. Thanks.
     
  5. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 1998
    Messages:
    8,332
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Real Name:
    Neil Joseph
    Try a search on "DIY screen". If you want daytime viewing then you have to find a way to get the room dark either way though.
     
  6. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
  7. Monte Montemayo

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yesterday I went to the "Good Guys" store to steal some ideas on their screens. The screen in the HT room was something like $3,000 and had a 4:3 electronic pull down! But something the sales guy did really got me to thinking. The display was a white screen but he had a little square sample, which was silver. On the back, it said, "6.5 Gain". When he put the little square up to the screen, the image was much brighter. So here's my question, what kind of paint do I use to get the most gain given the fact that I have a room with significant ambient light?

    P.S. The projector in the display room was a Yamaha DLP something or rather. I couldn’t believe how prominent the Screen Door Effect was so I asked the sales guy about it. I told him I was under the impression that SDE was much more noticeable on LCD’s, not DLP’s. His explanation? The SDE that I was seeing was the grain in the actual screen, not the projector. When I took the sample screen and rotated it, of course the SDE was still visible.
     
  8. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 1999
    Messages:
    4,948
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
  9. mark alan

    mark alan Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2002
    Messages:
    620
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    With significant ambient light, it is not going to matter what screen you have. you cannot use a front projector in a brightly lit room.

    Unless you are going to block the sliding door and skylights with blackout material, I would forget trying to select a screen for use in daytime. Just plan on using your projector at night and go with a normal screen.
     
  10. Monte Montemayo

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2004
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    hummm, you may have a point about the light in the room. I think I can darken the skylights (with just black paper I assume?) but the other light is going to be a little more tricky.
     
  11. Tony Loewen

    Tony Loewen Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2003
    Messages:
    134
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hey Monte, how goes? Jack is sending you to the right place with those links, avsforum.com has a huge section on diy screens, and they are a little bit better (IMHO) with projector questions, and have a huge HTPC forum. Check them out, I think alot of people here are members of both forums, or at least check back and forth quite often.
     
  12. John Besse

    John Besse Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2000
    Messages:
    569
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Trinity, FL
    Real Name:
    John
    Ok, I have a Sanyo Z1 projector and was going through this situation a month ago myself. I did a DYI project and this is what I did. I went to home depot and bought

    1 - 1/4" Hardboard (it is near the ply wood and comes in 4'x8' sheets) for roughly $6

    1 - Gallon of Behr Silverscreen paint flat
    1 - quart of Behr White Opal Pearlescent paint
    1 - quart of Kilz 2 primer
    1 - can of flat black spray paint

    I took the silverscreen paint and mixed it in a 2 gallon jug with the pearlescent paint. I applied 2 coats of primer to the board and then 2 coats of the mixed paint. I then took painters tape and taped off a 1" boarder going around the entire screen and taped newspaper over the painted surface leaving just a 1" boarder going around the screen. I applied 2 coats of black spray paint and took off the newspaper. I applied some touchups to the areas that got smudges from the newspaper and hung it to the wall using 6 wall anchors and screws

    I did the whole project for about $50. I was thinking it wouldn't come out too good, but was very pleased in the end with my results. I will definitely not be spending any money on a pre assembled screen any time in the near future. When I get around to it, I will upload some pics of my final project in this thread. I made a 72" and a 92" screen and ended up going with the 92", and am excited to have that hanging in my living room.


    As Tony mentioned, I got all the info from the avsforum and designed my screen based off of multiple different suggestions from their boards.
     
  13. Thomas Nichols

    Thomas Nichols Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 1999
    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I recently built a screen with blackout cloth, for use with a Z2, and I think it turned out very nice. My friend and I have watched DVD and HD. I can imagine the picture looking better, but not worth the extra $$$ as we built this screen for about 50$.
     
  14. John Besse

    John Besse Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2000
    Messages:
    569
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Trinity, FL
    Real Name:
    John
    Here are 2 pics of my screen I made. If I get around to it I will take some pics when the projector is on.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Those pics are of the 92" screen. I originally did a 72", and based upon where my Z1 is... I needed the bigger size.


    Thomas made mention of the black out cloth and there is a few things I want to mention about it. I have heard lots of good and bad things about the material. I have not used it myself to determine wether or not I like it... But, I have read that it doesn't look as good black level wise in picture quality as a greyish painted screen. However, brightness is supposedly improved a lot on a screen with white material vs. grey, which may work better for you since you said there is a lot of light in the room. The reason I added the white pearlescence paint into the Silverscreen paint was to improve on the brightness a bit, but still have enough grey in it to keep better blacklevels.

    If you do decide to do a screen made out of the black out material, make sure you use the non rubber side facing towards you and the projector. I have read some people having good luck painting the blackout cloth and making some great projects that way. However it is supposedly very difficult to paint the material, so I decided to go with the hardboard and paint it based on other reccomendations. If you are interested in the black out cloth, here is a link to Wal Mart which has a good deal on different sizes. The wrinkles may be a b*tch to work with, but I also hear Joanne fabrics is another great place to look for the material.

    The great thing about a DYI project, is the doing it yourself part. You can play around with different materials until you are happy. I would recommend tossing around the idea of a DYI over purchasing a premade screen. You'll save some money and you can mess around with the sizes you want and make a screen that fits your needs and wants.
     

Share This Page