A high-contrast gray screen paint.... Is it really possible? - Page 2 - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #11 of 16 Old 09-16-11, 01:07 PM
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Re: A high-contrast gray screen paint.... Is it really possible?

Electric_Haggis wrote: View Post
Yeah. All your points are dead right. The lack of hotspotting is beyond me too... and yet there are quite a few positive testimonials linked to that AVSforum thread.

I'll have a read through them later when I get a good chance.
The psychology behind SF is very interesting; very little proof of screen performance or attributes is offered yet people are constantly told that they will have an "optimal" and "exceptional" screen if they follow explicit directions, otherwise they will be settling for a lack luster just-ordinary screen.

Many, if not most, of the SF screen builders are making their first screen and don't know what a screen should look like or how it should perform. Add that to all the work it took to obtain, measure, mix and apply their SF and very few people will want to admit that their screen is anything but the near-magical marvel it has been expressed as being.

I see that in the sister of this thread at AVS MM has given a figure for an "accepted standard" for hot spotting. There is no screen industry standard for hot spotting.

BTW, I notice SF v2.5 has been introduced by pb. It makes one wonder what happened to versions 2.2, 2.3 and 2.4. Anyway, this version now has different amounts of paints that need to be measured for each listed amount of color component to make a given shade of SF. The only reason I can see for doing this is to make the mixes seem to have some form of scientific validation. I guess the more difficult a mix is to make the better it must be. I also see that the amount of poly in the mixes has been increased to around 1/3rd of the total mix (not counting water added). this would make these mixes even more prone to hot spotting.

Thanks again. You're a great help.
You are very welcome.

While we have developed our own range of DIY screen mixes, as PJ's get brighter there is a decreasing need to use such reflectively enhanced mixes in the average home theater. Here at HTS we are all about helping people get the best screen for their HT situation no matter if it be a commercial screen, a laminate, an OTS (off-the-shelf) paint or a DIY mix.
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post #12 of 16 Old 09-16-11, 07:11 PM Thread Starter
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Re: A high-contrast gray screen paint.... Is it really possible?

Thanks Harp & Mech.
Good points.

To give them the benefit of the doubt (at least my doubt), I'd throw in these points...

* They've started a responses thread, which is fairly positive so far...
* They do seem to be ok and non-pushy with users making up their own mix.
* Shots on the above link that aren't taken by them don't seem to show any hotspotting.
* Most of the major screen manufacturers upgrade and improve on their old designs.

All that said, here's...

What I (I think) I Know So Far 2.0

* Whether it works as claimed or not, a screen such as a Silver Fire would certainly require a lot more time, trouble and risk than a flat gray or white.

* Despite all claims, a silver screen must surely sheen or hotspot at least a little, and have at least some viewing angle drop-off.

* A gray screen is better than using an ND filter, as it will absorb ambient / bounce light and projected light equally.

* The image on a white screen will be affected (slightly) more than a gray screen by ambient light.

* My projector's iris can be adjusted to drop the brightness to a point where the black level is sufficiently deep and the overall brightness is still high enough.
This can be achieved with my current white screen.

* Any "critical" viewing I do is with all light's off. With the light's on, I deserve whatever I get and am not at all fussed.

* In my current room (and all others I've been in), if I move my hand around to block the projector's beam, then the shadow pretty much indicates the best black level obtainable in that room with bounce-light from walls & ceiling factored in.

* In my current room with lights off, surface light bouncing back onto the screen is EXTREMELY minimal.

* Illumination of the room's surfaces from light bouncing off the screen is a far greater distraction.
Unfortunately as this is a rented apartment, the best I can do to remedy this is darker curtains and a black rug between the screen and viewing area. This has helped a great deal, in the same way that my masking and black surround does.

* A big-bucks screen such as the DNP Supernova is the dog's bollocks in 2-way ambient light rejection.
But apart from this, its PQ benefit in a darkened room would be dubious, and there must surely be viewing angle limitations.

* I should change my Username to *POINT*FORM*101.

Last edited by Electric_Haggis; 09-16-11 at 07:17 PM.
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post #13 of 16 Old 09-16-11, 09:38 PM
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Re: A high-contrast gray screen paint.... Is it really possible?

I don't want to start discussing specifics about a live thread on another forum. All I will say about the current SF testimonial thread at AVS is that of the 5 posts so far 3 are from pb and not the screen builders. And one of those didn't even use SF.

I think it quite illustrative that in the poll in the "Beginner's Delight" DIY Screen Paint thread at AVS, BW™ still has more screens built than SF... and BW™ hasn't been supported there for almost 2 1/2 years!

That said, this isn't a popularity contest. We don't recommend SF screens simply because that mix doesn't meet the characteristics that make for a good general-purpose screen (this also applies to RSMM and it's variations). It is also needlessly difficult to mix. If you want to give SF, or any other mix, a shot please feel totally free to do so and to talk about the results (good or bad) here.

You may wonder if there are problems with the SF and RSMM mixes then why is there little or no proof of such dissatisfaction in the threads at AVS DIY Screens? The answer is simple - they aren't allowed to remain and are deleted; sometimes just a post or two and sometimes the entire thread. Such unethical, IMO, behavior by the moderator (Prof55 when it happened to me) is what caused me to leave that forum. I wasn't the only one, most of the major posters of years gone by left as well, or at least don't post much anymore. No one plays against a stacked deck.
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post #14 of 16 Old 09-17-11, 12:00 PM
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Re: A high-contrast gray screen paint.... Is it really possible?

Let's play a game. It's called 'What is wrong with this picture?'

The above photo was posted by a very happy sf user I'm told. This one is easy to figure out. The hot spotting is obvious.

This is a shot from a job that Roland was paid to do. If it were me I'd want my money back. Why? Can you see it?

And this photo was plastered everywhere it could be, shown as the quintessential sf end shot. I think it may still even be on Roland's web page for his other business. Regardless, what is wrong with that shot?

All three shots show the same thing, a very sharp and narrow viewing cone. Take a look at the white bar under the sportscasters. The white bar that extends from one end of the screen to the other is darker on one end than the other.

And the 'be all, end all' shot. The image is a lot white on the left than the right.

To be honest, I hate showing off these types of things as all that happens is that you end up with the absolutely lousy shots Harp posted in post #8. It's relatively simple to make something look good to the camera. Especially if you keep the lens dusty and the objective of the picture off center and out of focus. I can almost guarantee you that shots that show anything white from the full width of the screen will not show up anymore. Unless they're over exposed.

The latest I hear from avs is that there is now a standard for hot spotting. I bet it only applies to sf, rsmax, and silver though. I wonder if SMPTE knows of this? Or THX? ISF you think? I'd think not.
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post #15 of 16 Old 09-17-11, 12:58 PM
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Re: A high-contrast gray screen paint.... Is it really possible?

Electric_Haggis wrote: View Post
* Most of the major screen manufacturers upgrade and improve on their old designs.
I forgot to respond to this in my last post. While most screen manufacturers do have R&D departments that are constantly seeking better screens, by far the most activity is in the newer gray screens that have some form of advanced optical characteristics. These screens are designed to produce high gain to perform better with the new 3D projectors (which are lacking in lumens when used in 3D mode). The problem with these screens is that to operate they must bend light to send more of it on-axis to the viewer. When light is bent by a lens it refracts which can (and almost always does) add negative artifacts to the image. One of the big negatives of this type of screen has been color-shifting of the image. the other is a limited viewing cone (which may not be a problem if only two or three people watch the screen and are seated close together).

Research into the standard white and gray screens for 2D viewing revolves more along the lines of producing such screens at less cost to maximize profit rather than increasing performance. Don't fix it if it isn't broken.
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post #16 of 16 Old 09-17-11, 06:53 PM Thread Starter
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Re: A high-contrast gray screen paint.... Is it really possible?

Well, thanks yet again, Harp.

Sometimes it takes your kind of expertise to point out the bleeding obvious!

It's been educational.

On reflection (pun intended), I guess the finalists are...

* Leave the Flat paint tint where it is now (which is neck-&-neck with my old BOC/matte white screen)

* Tint it a slightly grayer (something in the order of an N8)

* Consider the Black Widow mix (or Australian equivalent)

Last edited by Electric_Haggis; 09-18-11 at 12:03 AM.
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