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post #1 of 11 Old 10-19-10, 12:30 PM Thread Starter
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HT Projector Advice - Questions

I am new to the forums so first I would like to say "Hi" to everyone.

I currently have an extra 73" Mits DLP that I was thinking about putting down into the HT room that we are building, but I am also thinking about selling it and going with a projector for the room. I will be honest, I have a hard time imagining that a projector will look better than the TV.

What is the bonus for a projector? Will I really see a difference? The only Con I have for the TV right now is the fact that it will take up 2' extra in the room since it is a DLP.

Now if I were to go to a projector, I could really use some advice on which to get.

I am going to go off of the sticky that is posted for this forum and give you the information for my room that will be built.

1. Room dimensions

My room will be 14' wide x 19' Long. I am traveling right now so I can not get the exact height, but I think it will be about 9' 10' high.


2. Seating distance, and if multiple rows of seating, where is the prime seating distance going to be.
Lighting conditions. This really is an important factor.

We are unsure about the seating but I think we will end up with a 2 or a 3 seater row up front and then a 2-3 seater in the back row. The prime seating position will be about 8' from the screen.

As for lighting, it will be able to be pitch black. It's in a basement so the only light will be from a bedroom window that will be able to be isolated. I am probably going to have some accent lighting around the walls of the room with maybe a light up on top (so we can sell it later as a family room). Most of the time the viewing will be done in pitch black or if I am just watching football or something, I will have accent lighting on the sides.



3. Viewing habits. Do you do most viewing with lights off? Do you only watch movies on the big screen? Will there be lighting on from time to time, and where is the lighting located in reference to the screen? Will there be any daytime viewing where sunlight is a concern? These are all very important when determining a screen and making a recommendation.

I answered most of this above. Main viewing will be Movies with also some sports thrown in, or if one of us just wants to watch some TV down there if the other TV upstairs is taken. Most of the time it will be done in the total dark or with a little accent lighting around the room.


4, What projector you have (if you already purchased one), and the exact brand and model.

I have not picked one out yet, that is why I am here I am also curious about screens. I have heard some people use screens and some people paint screens on their wall? Are the pros and cons to this?

I will be totally honest. I see that some people are going for projectors that are about $2000-$3500. I would prefer not to spend that much but will if I really need to. I am not sure what kind of selection I could get for around the $1200-$1500 range and I am also unsure how much a screen will end up costing me.

Any advice or help is defiantely welcome

Thank you in advance
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post #2 of 11 Old 10-19-10, 01:12 PM
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

The biggest advantage of a projector is the size of the image. These days you can very easily get an image that is 120" or more with the same picture quality as your Mits DLP The issue you need to look at is how far back will you sit from the display? if your only 10" back then the 73" Mits will be just fine.
Right now the Panasonic AE4000 (for around $2500) is your best bang for buck and is truly a great projector.

Home theater:
Onkyo 805, Yamaha YDP2006EQ, Samson Servo 600 amp
3 EV Sentry 500 monitors across the front, 4 Mission 762i's Surrounds, SVS PB13U sub, Panasonic BDT220, Harmony 1100, Nintendo WiiU
Panasonic PT-AE8000 on a 120" 2,35:1 fixed screen

Living room system:
Sherwood/Newcastle R972, Mission 765's, SVS SBS02's, A/D/S MS3u sub, Yamaha YDG2030EQ
Yamaha KX-393 Tape deck, CDC 805 CD changer, Panasonic BD60, Sony turntable PS-T20
Panasonic TC-P50ST60, HD-PVR & WDTV Live, Harmony 900

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post #3 of 11 Old 10-19-10, 01:52 PM
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

What model is the 73" I am currently sitting 8-10ft from my 73831 and its pretty close to the same experience of when I had my 114" screen and projector in my old house where I was sitting 10.5'-13'. My theater was 13'w by 18.3'd and it was honestly a little to big but was free Stewart StudioTek. I would go 96" in that room and you could even go with the new Mits HC4000 when it comes out and get a very nice projector that would be inside your wanted budget.
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post #4 of 11 Old 10-19-10, 03:36 PM
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

Welcome to Home Theater Shack. I joined a few months back when I was getting serious about building a new HT in my basement and needed some advice. I eventually picked up a lot of great information here about construction, setup, cables, projectors, screens, etc., etc. My final build (which is very near completion), reflects a lot of advice and information I picked up here.

Here's my two cents...

Projector vs. DLP:

At one point a few years ago - when we were in the planning stages for building our house - I was looking at all options including plasma, LCD flat panel, DLP rear projection, etc. After months of looking at different models in stores, I realized that for my budget (~$3000 for TV or PJ + screen), I was limited to ~60-70" unless I went with a projector. With projector prices falling steadily over the last few years, you can get much better PQ than with most DLP rear-projection TV's I've seen. I just got my Panasonic PT-AE4000 from www.VisualApex.com for $2000. I recommend you give this some serious consideration but you can still do very well with $1500.

Projector Pro's: 1) Sheer picture size - want 100" screen? 120"? No problem. 2) Can adjust picture size to suit room conditions, program material, and your personal tastes. 3) Much easier to elevate screen on wall for better viewing from rear seats (may have to build a stage or riser for the DLP). 4) That "movie theater" feel that you cannot get with any other type of monitor.

Projector Con's: 1) Need a convenient place to mount the unit - sometimes easier said than done. 2) Need to run power and AV cables to the projector - not a big deal if your space is unfinished but can be a pain otherwise. 3) Viewing in ambient light is not great.

On the last "Con"... we installed our PJ last weekend and have been testing it (on plain white primered wall) with different program material, screen sizes, and lighting conditions to help decide what type/size screen we want. For "critical" viewing, ambient light control is a must. The picture does wash out with ambient light. However, for casual TV viewing or video game play, some ambient light (we had 3x 100W bulbs dimmed to ~50% in a 15x16 room) is just fine (not perfection, but very viewable).

Screen Size:

I am not sure what other use you have planned for the room. Assuming it will be dedicated for the home theater, I suggest moving the front row seating back a couple of feet and making the picture larger if you decide to go with a PJ. This will make for more enjoyable viewing for those in the second (and possibly third) row.

Screen Material:

You can get a very decent (according to reviews) screen from Visual Apex for about $400 including shipping. However, there are several inexpensive and (according to posts here) excellent DIY options which range from just using white primer on the wall, to several simple paint mixes, to using white countertop laminate material (no kidding - I never would have believed it myself…). These guys have spent countless hours mixing, testing, and reviewing different solutions so we don’t have to. After seeing how good the picture looks on our (cheap white primered) wall, I can’t imagine spending $400+ (that could go to other worthy causes like upgraded Blu Ray player, popcorn machine, or lots of beer) on a screen until I give DIY a shot.

I must admit that 6 months ago I was 99% against a DIY screen. After finishing this build I did not want another seemingly endless project on my hands. Even 3 months ago I was probably 60/40 in favor of a manufactured screen. Now, once we settle on a screen size, I am going to try the “Black Widow” paint mix developed in this forum. Between cost of paint and a simple 1x4 frame wrapped in black velvet I expect to spend less than $100. You can’t beat that.

Good luck!
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post #5 of 11 Old 10-19-10, 05:27 PM
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

I agree with everyone so far. You will get a larger screen and if you get a good projector, and SCREEN. it will gave a better picture than you currently are used to. I have the Panasonic AE4000 and it can be had for $ 1,999.00 if you look around , but just as good is the Epson 8500U which can be found for $ 1800.00 if you look. Yes you will need one of these projectors and not a cheaper one due to your viewing distance being a bit close usually 11-to 13 feet is a min , but with one of the two projectors listed above you should be fine. if you were sitting back farther , you could get by with a lesser expensive unit.
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post #6 of 11 Old 10-19-10, 07:49 PM
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

With a 14' X 19' room, you can have seating at ~ 12' & 18' (I currently have seating at 13' & 19' in my 12.5' X 20' room).

You can easily go with a +120" screen from those distances (I currently have a 126" screen).

It will blow away the 73" Mits. I currently also have a 65" Mits in the living room (65C9) that we use a lot, but only for TV. When we want to watch a movie, we go to the theater and watch it on the 126" screen, because the Mits just doesn't compare.

I'll also echo what others have said regarding the Panny 4000 - great projector.

If you do decide to go that route, I'd go with a scope screen though (2.4:1), instead of a standard widescreen (1.78:1), because you have the width and height to make it work well in that room. Instead of a 120" 1.78:1 screen (which would be 105" wide), I'd go for a 153" scope screen (which would be 141" wide). Both screens would be the same height and when watching 16:9 content, the size of the image would be the same on either screen, but when watching movies with a wider aspect ratio, the image will be that much more impressive (and you can't do that with your Mits)
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post #7 of 11 Old 10-20-10, 11:05 AM Thread Starter
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

Quote:
spartanstew wrote: View Post
With a 14' X 19' room, you can have seating at ~ 12' & 18' (I currently have seating at 13' & 19' in my 12.5' X 20' room).

You can easily go with a +120" screen from those distances (I currently have a 126" screen).

Is that with standard HT seating with Recline? I thought I needed more room than that between rows. Maybe not
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post #8 of 11 Old 10-20-10, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

What do you guys think of the new Epson 8350 Projector? It seems to be getting pretty good reviews and it is priced right at about $1299
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post #9 of 11 Old 10-20-10, 11:16 AM
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

Epson makes a good projector so I would say that you getting a good deal with that one.

Home theater:
Onkyo 805, Yamaha YDP2006EQ, Samson Servo 600 amp
3 EV Sentry 500 monitors across the front, 4 Mission 762i's Surrounds, SVS PB13U sub, Panasonic BDT220, Harmony 1100, Nintendo WiiU
Panasonic PT-AE8000 on a 120" 2,35:1 fixed screen

Living room system:
Sherwood/Newcastle R972, Mission 765's, SVS SBS02's, A/D/S MS3u sub, Yamaha YDG2030EQ
Yamaha KX-393 Tape deck, CDC 805 CD changer, Panasonic BD60, Sony turntable PS-T20
Panasonic TC-P50ST60, HD-PVR & WDTV Live, Harmony 900

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post #10 of 11 Old 10-20-10, 11:34 PM
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Re: HT Projector Advice - Questions

Quote:
Cream wrote: View Post
Is that with standard HT seating with Recline? I thought I needed more room than that between rows. Maybe not
No, 6' between rows is sufficient.

You might not be able to walk behind the first row if the second row is fully reclined, but if someone in the rear needs to get up, it's not difficult for someone else in the rear to unrecline momentarily to let them pass.
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