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Projection screen recommendation
#412350 05/28/15 07:24 PM
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Friends,

After ~12 years in our current home, I finally figured out how to configure an acceptable compromise in order to try using a projector. I'm excited.

This is a totally budget-oriented endeavor. I made a conscious decision to try a 110" projector-plus-screen rather than a cheap 70" LED. I wish I'd gotten a Panasonic Plasma, but, bygones. I'm upgrading from a 10-year-old JVC HDILA 61" RPTV. There is no substitute for "bigger". I've done the seating distance calculations and am pretty confident that 110" (at 12' viewing distance) is my sweet spot.

Pulled the trigger on a refurb 8350 directly from Epson. No tax, free shipping, $625. So, that decision is made, and you may not chastise me about alternative DLP rainbow generators light cannons. Throw will be about 13' (above and slightly behind primary viewing position).

The space is the living room. There will be ambient light. Even when we watch at night, somebody typically has a handheld device or something.

The room is broad rather than deep, so I want to preserve the off-axis viewing instead of using an ambient-light-rejecting screen that focuses the reflected light to a specific viewing area.

So, I'm thinking that a gray screen will be best.

In keeping with my budget mindset, the alternatives are:

Silver Ticket (also at Amazon. $289 with free Prime shipping). Has 1.0 gain and great reviews. I found several reports of exemplary customer service. OTOH, people seem to universally have trouble with assembling the support bar, the border isn't as wide, and it appears to be wholly Chinese-made.

For the same price including shipping, Jamestown offers 0.8 gain and a 4" border crafted in TN. But there is a production wait (which may not matter, because I have work to do). Given the throw distance, ambient light and relatively modest lumen output of the projector, I'm concerned about the difference in gain.

I guess my questions are:

1. Does anybody have opinions about or experience about these two screens?

2. Given my setup, does anybody want to try and talk me into a white screen? (which would open up Vapex, Monoprice and perhaps others as options)

3. I think that curved screens (which ARE available from both of the above) are silly and not worth the premium. Anybody disagree?

4. Relative to installation, I'll want a fairly shallow wall mount (it probably could be a shelf, but I think a wall mount will look better). Whaddyagot?

5. Monoprice for long HDMI cable?

Thanks - as always - for your guidance.

Tom


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Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412352 05/28/15 10:09 PM
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The 8350 was a great choice.

If I remember correctly the 8350 will just barely zoom to fill a screen that size at 13'. At 12' it wouldnt fill a 106" screen. Adding horizontal shift reduced zoom slightly as well. Probably a good idea to hold off on the screen size until you test it in your room if you have install limitations. The epson will have no issues lighting a screen your size with modest ambient light in normal mode. Might be stretching it in eco mode. In living room mode you're laughin. 110" at 12' will be a very immersive viewing experience. I would shoot it at the wall and test for a night or two to make up your mind if this is your first go with a PJ. Some people get motion sick if the screen fills too much of their periferal vision. In your position I'd pull the trigger on the cheap Amazon screen. You can calibrate to suit once you get set up. Pretty forgiving.

3 epson 8350 family. We went 2 years with a 90" DIY blackout cloth and it looked great. My brother has a 92" white Mustang screen and it looks great. My other bro has a 106" noname spandex screen from tiger direct and it looks awesome.

Reviews vary wildly with this sort of stuff because because some people just aren't good at assembly. (Never had lego as a kid I guess.)

Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412353 05/28/15 10:12 PM
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Oh yeah, whatever you decide, 2 people are really needed to assemble and mount without risking any damage (or tempers!)

Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412357 05/29/15 03:04 AM
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Thank you so much!

I'm surprised by your comments on zoom limitation. The calculator at Projector Central led me to think that the 8350 was super flexible relative to placement.

Excellent advice. Much appreciated.


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Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412383 05/30/15 02:31 PM
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Well it's about friggin time, Thomas! smile

As much as I hate to suggest this, I think you need to hop on over to AVS and search for user input on those two screens. A common issue you will find with screen gain, is that it rarely is what the manufacture claims (much like projector lumen output).

Considering the environment you will be using the screen, you would benefit from a grey or silver screen, verse a neutral white screen. My screen is a Stewart Firehawk G3 screen. It's gain is 1.3, but it's 'real' gain is closer to 1.1.... It's a great screen, but you did mention "budget", so this one is probably not on the shopping list, unless you could find a used one.... The viewing cone isn't as tight as some might have you believe either. It'd work just fine for you.

Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412392 05/30/15 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted By tomtuttle
Thank you so much!

I'm surprised by your comments on zoom limitation. The calculator at Projector Central led me to think that the 8350 was super flexible relative to placement.

Excellent advice. Much appreciated.

Good on ya Tom. You're gonna love the projector!

Trust Projector central's calculator on screen size.

If you can, get the projector first and watch a few movies at different screen sizes before ordering your screen. I'm at 106" from 1o' and there are people that like larger screens at that distance.

I can't help you on the screen type.


Fred

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Blujays1: Spending Fred's money one bottle at a time, no two... Oh crap!
Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412404 05/31/15 05:13 AM
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Thanks, Mike. Thanks, Fred.

I will do as you suggest - get the projector first and then decide, and also do a bit more research.

I appreciate the help!


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Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412419 06/02/15 01:06 AM
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Its always a pleasure to help you Tom. Keep us updated. smile


Fred

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Blujays1: Spending Fred's money one bottle at a time, no two... Oh crap!
Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412435 06/02/15 10:25 PM
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Epson canceled my order without notification. I'm dissatisfied, as they no longer have the 8350-R available. They do have the 8500ub, but it's rated output is meaningfully reduced (2000 v. 1600 lumens). Since I'll be in a room with ambient light, I think that's going to matter (16 v. 19 Fl for 110" at 13').

I can get an 8345 from Visual Apex for about the same cost. But - again - somewhat lower rated output.

Harumph.


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Re: Projection screen recommendation
tomtuttle #412437 06/02/15 10:32 PM
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The 8345 is the twin of the 8350. It was renamed for bestbuy/futureshop exclusively so they wouldnt have to pricematch other sellers I heard. All my references before were for 8345s. The exact same projector.

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