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Discussion Starter #21
Harp, a quick question. We have discussed this on the development thread already but I was wondering if you have gotten around to formulating the C&S Ultra with paint one could get at Home Depot.
I'm quite certain C&S™ Ultra can be made with Behr #1850 paint (ultra white flat latex enamel) instead of the Valspar Ultra Premium white flat latex enamel, but the silver paint MUST be Liquitex BASICS Silver (at least at this time). Home Depot seems to be stopping selling metallic paints; first Behr stopped making their metallics and then HD stopped selling the Ralph Lauren metallics. I know it's an inconvenience ordering the Liquitex paint, but the only other choice is paying big bucks to get them from a local store that sells artist paints (A. C. Moore, Michael's etc.). If you can assemble the needed paints over time, you can get 40% to 50% off retail price by using weekly coupons at the above mentioned stores (they will accept each others sale coupons).

My situation is almost identical to Centurian's and so your comment about the valspar paint maybe hotspotting got me thinking. Or is that only in regards to the darker mix( Electra)?
It's only when making a darker mix by adding the N6 paint. The way things stand C&S™ Ultra is made using the regular BASICS Silver paint since the BASICS MATT paints are not sold in the large craft/artist supply stores any more (I don't know why). All the BASICS paints are of a satin finish (some, like the Titanium White are even glossier) so C&S™ Ultra is already 50% satin and 50% flat white enamel so any additional satin paint may push the mix into hot spotting. Another contributing factor is that C&S™ Ultra only makes 32 oz. of paint before water is added while the older C&S™ mixes made 48 oz. The volume discrepancy is really less than that because the BASICS paint is VERY thick, but I hope you get my drift. That is why I'm only suggesting the Behr N6 paint (it's flat) be used to make Elektra™ with C&S™ Ultra as the base paint.

We will be introducing two new mixes later this year, the first is Cream&Sugar™ International and the other will be called Aurora™ International. These mixes will be made from 100% Liquitex BASICS or BASICS MATT paints. This is being done so that these mixes can be made in any country in the world. Aurora™ will basically be the same thing as Elektra™ only it will use a N5 paint as a shade-adjuster since that is the only neutral gray Liquitex sells.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
Thanks. I have the liquitex basics already so it's the base I need to acquire with no lowes nearby. Your work and testing are MUCH appreciated.
Thank you.

In all of our testing Valspar Ultra Premium enamel and Behr #1850 have performed in a very similar manner and one could be exchanged for the other. If you have to you could probably use the newer Behr #1750 (their ULTRA paint), but do that only if absolutely necessary. I have read that some have had problems with roller marks with #1850, but all that means is that they haven't thinned it enough with water before rolling (it doesn't take much).
 

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Harp,
I really appreciate your insight and knowledge on this. I think i will go the route of using C&S with maybe a pinch (1 - 1.5oz) of N6 ? Interesting recommendation on the PJ as I was/am strongly considering the Epson 8700UB or 9700UB as well. Thanks again.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Harp,
I really appreciate your insight and knowledge on this. I think i will go the route of using C&S with maybe a pinch (1 - 1.5oz) of N6 ? Interesting recommendation on the PJ as I was/am strongly considering the Epson 8700UB or 9700UB as well. Thanks again.
Adding that small an amount of N6 paint to C&S™ Ultra would only darken the mix by the slightest amount, but it wouldn't hurt anything either.

I am far from an expert on projectors, for that info check out our PJ forum here at HTS. All of the PJ's you are contemplating are way above my pay-grade - all I know about them is what I read; but if you are serious about good image contrast and black levels get a PJ that has them "out of the box" and don't try to compensate for their lack with a screen.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Excellent recommendation. So now I have to ask what projector are you running?
I'm half embarrassed to tell you. :blush: Like a lot of people I made the mistake of getting a cheap PJ that was on sale (I think I paid something like $300, but it may have been $400) without really knowing anything about projectors. I got a Viewsonic PJ503D (which I don't recommend to anyone for any purpose). It's an 800x600 PJ, but that doesn't really bother me since I'm still using standard DVD's; but it's a DLP PJ that only has something like 2 or 3 segments on the color-wheel which causes me a HUGE problem with Rainbow Effect. It is especially bad when watching a Black&White movie since the colors you see out of the corner of your eyes are easily seen against the B&W image on the screen. The RBE is so bad with this PJ I even was able to take a photo of it! The area of the image where I am moving my finger up and down in is white (meaning it's getting equal amounts of red, green and blue light) the area of the image hitting my hand is blue.

 

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Harp,

I am most impressed with your knowledge and experience with high performing DIY screens for a reasonable price.

Presently, I am in the final stages of finishing a new summer home with a theater room that will have high ambient light during the daytime, so we plan to use the PJ only at night and a smaller flat screen display positioned below during the daylight hours. There are some parameters of the room layout and decor that I will not be able to change, so I am seeking advice to help make sure I achieve the best outcome in terms of the screen performance. The Projector is a Panasonic PT-AE4000U that will need to be ceiling mounted at about 11' (as close as possible) from the 107" diagonal screen painted on smooth drywall, the back of the fire place. Ceiling is light beige and walls are medium beige in eggshell latex. I can control lighting to a very low level of light. There can be a small amount of indirect moonlight coming from the great room behind the fireplace wall reflecting off walls in the theater room. This indirect light is coming from behind and to the sides of the screen which remains very dark. I believe the light from the screen image reflecting off the theater room walls and ceiling will be a bigger factor.

Do you think the C&S Ultra will be a good selection for this PJ and the environment described above?

I tried my old Sharp XV- Z90U in this room on the primed wall and it was plenty bright, a little reflection off the ceiling that I may need to work on. I made a 92" dia. portable screen for this projector with a Behr formula a few years ago that we still enjoy and I am looking forward to high performance with the new screen and PJ.

Thanks,

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Hi Dave, welcome to HTS! :wave:

Thanks for the kind words, but it really is a group effort here; especially with Wbasset and Mech. Others aren't shy to add their words of knowledge either. :T

The Panny AE4000U is a very nice PJ, but it has such a wide choice of settings it can be hard to determine the actual brightness people are getting out of their units. The ProjectorCentral calculator (which we use a lot here) shows this PJ hitting the screen with 21 fL of illumination, but the ProjectorReviews measured lumen levels tell another story and in your HT (and using econo mode to extend lamp life) you would be shooting about 10.5 fL.

If you can control ambient light to only reflected moonlight from another room I would think that C&S™ Ultra would work a treat for you.

While we haven't gotten around to testing the exact amounts of N6 neutral gray paint to add to C&S™ Ultra to make darker mixes, the amounts listed in the Elektra™ thread will be very close. If you determine your C&S™ Ultra screen is too light in color you could simply add some N6 paint to any remaining mix to darken it slightly and just paint over the C&S™ Ultra without repriming the screen.

If you were shooting a 107" screen with your Z90U you would have been hitting the screen with about 8 fL.
 

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Harp,

Thanks for the very quick response! Are you aware of any disadvantage of mounting the PJ at the shortest throw distance for a given screen width? I need to stay in front of a ceiling fan.

Regards,

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #33
Harp,

Thanks for the very quick response! Are you aware of any disadvantage of mounting the PJ at the shortest throw distance for a given screen width? I need to stay in front of a ceiling fan.

Regards,

Dave
The only "disadvantage" of using a PJ (or even a camera) with it's zoom lens set close to the end of it's range (either tele or wide) would be some minimal image distortion around the edges of the image. I want to quickly add that such distortion may not even be detectable with the human eye without a special test image to show it (fine cross hatch patterns and small circles). When watching normal movie/TV images I don't think you will have any problems using the widest zoom setting to get the maximum screen size. It might be a good idea to ask this question in the Projector forum here.

All our screen mixes are designed to have large angles of view so you shouldn't be losing image quality or brightness with a short throw PJ mounting. This isn't the case with high gain screens where you might actually lose some image brightness, and even get some color-shifting, with a short throw due to the relatively high angles of incidence at which the PJ beam strikes. Here I'm thinking about commercial retroreflective screens or so-called high gain DIY screen mixes available elsewhere that use gloss to increase gain. With a retroreflective screen the farther the viewer is away from being on-axis (both vertically and horizontally) with the PJ the less bright the screen will be and the greater the chance of the image being off-color because of light refraction. The glossier DIY mixes will lose brightness also by reflecting a larger portion of light onto the floor and not the viewers eyes (unless you like to lay of the floor during viewing ;)). This is all simple optics and physics of light refraction and reflection.
 

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Dave,

As a user of the original C&S and the Panasonic PT-AE2000U, I can tell you a few things:

1) You're putting together a dynamite combination for image quality.

Try the projector's "Color 1" setting - it's reputed to be the one that matches Hollywood standards. I found, when I calibrated with DVE, that I only needed to give it a tiny red push - and I understand that the newer Pannys may not even need that. With the projector at the back of the room, about 13 feet from the screen, zoomed to cover an area about 9 1/2' by a little over 5' high, I run it in Economy and at High Altitude to extend bulb life without noticing any dimming or fan noise - and I'm only sitting a few feet in front of the projector.

2) You should avoid using an upside-down mount for the projector.

If you read through the PT-AE2000U thread over at AV Science forums, there's a design problem in the PT-AE line of projectors. The three color filters are held in rectangular frames that are metal on their sides and bottom but their tops are just strips of adhesive tape!

Mount the machine upside down and run it for a while and the heat softens the glue of the tape, and then gravity pulls a filter down and out of position.

The do-it-yourselfers over there have posted instructions for taking the projector apart and fixing it when this happens, but the best solution is prevention. Mount the projector right-side up!

I use a six foot tall wire frame shelf similar to Metro shelving that I got from a local hardware store. You can find a link to find something like it at Amazon on the site I just launched on how to set up a home theater - http://PRO-Home-Theaters.com - on the page called "To House and Connect" (I link to this forum there for folks who want to paint their own screens.)

Oh, and the projector pulls a lot of air in through it's back panel and blows warm air out the front, so don't put the shelves too closely spaced, since the PJ killed one AVR of mine that was mounted just an inch below the PJ by stealing the cool air it needed for its own ventilation.

Guess where the best place would be to put a tall shelf unit (which can also hold the rest of the electronics)? The back of the room. The only long cables you'll need this way will be the speaker wires. Since the screen is reflective, you can bounce your remotes off the screen to control the equipment at the back of the room.

Phil
 

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I went to buy the valspar flat enamel in base 1 to use with the 115 .67 tint c
ode and the resulting paint looked blue grey. When I came back on here to check this out I saw your post with the screen pics listed the base as ultrawhite. Could you tell me if the correct base for the valspar flat enamel is base1 or ultrawhite? Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
I went to buy the valspar flat enamel in base 1 to use with the 115 .67 tint c
ode and the resulting paint looked blue grey. When I came back on here to check this out I saw your post with the screen pics listed the base as ultrawhite. Could you tell me if the correct base for the valspar flat enamel is base1 or ultrawhite? Thanks.
If your paint is blue-gray the store mixed it wrong. That's kind of hard to do, but it is far from impossible. The tinted paint should appear a very light pink since tint 115 is Magenta, but so little tint is used it barely colors the white paint.

All of the Valspar numbered bases (1, 2 and 4) are called ultra white, but they vary in how much paint is in the can (the more tint that is to be added to make a color the less actual white paint is in the can) and how much titanium dioxide (the white pigment) is in the base to start with.
 

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Thanks for the info. The store only had base 4 and a quart can labeled flat enamel ultrawhite with no base number on it. In the gallon size they had a can labeled flat enamel base 1, so they used the same tint number and just quadrupled the amount. When they opened the base 1 can to tint it the color was a grey, not white. It looked slightly blue, and the magenta tint barely changed the color. I was asking about the ultrawhite vs the base 1 because they only had the base 4 and the can labeled ultrawhitw with no base number in the quart size. Do you have any pics of what the valspar paint should look like after its tinted?
 

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Discussion Starter #38
Thanks for the info. The store only had base 4 and a quart can labeled flat enamel ultrawhite with no base number on it. In the gallon size they had a can labeled flat enamel base 1, so they used the same tint number and just quadrupled the amount. When they opened the base 1 can to tint it the color was a grey, not white. It looked slightly blue, and the magenta tint barely changed the color. I was asking about the ultrawhite vs the base 1 because they only had the base 4 and the can labeled ultrawhitw with no base number in the quart size. Do you have any pics of what the valspar paint should look like after its tinted?
Quadrupling the tint formula to make a gallon should work just fine, I think they just made a mistake and used the wrong color tint; however, if the gallon of base 1 looked gray before tinting I suspect something was wrong with that can of paint from the beginning.

The can of paint without a base number was a full can of Valspar Ultra White with the max. amount of titanium dioxide in it. In a pinch you could probably use that base (no number) and tint it the same (115 - 0.67) instead of using base 1, but I highly recommend using base 1. Base 4 has quite a bit less paint in the can since it it designed to make dark colors all the way down to black so lots of room is provided for adding tint, and it has less TiO2, so it won't work. In theory the store computer can manipulate the tint data to compensate between bases, but the base color for C&S™ Ultra is so light that won't work.

Here is the color of the C&S™ Ultra base. Keep in mind that the color you actually see is determined by how well your computer monitor is calibrated. It is also hard to directly compare an emissive color swatch (the one below) to a paint sample which is a reflected color, but it should give you an idea of what to look for.

 

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Thanks for the help harpmaker. I went back to Lowes and had them open another can of base 1 and it was white this time. They agreed to exchange it for the one I bought with the wrong colored base. Also, just wanted to say thanks for all the work you guys do on these DIY paints. I'm a happy two time black widow user and I'm looking forward to experimenting with C&S Ultra.
 

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Discussion Starter #40
Glad to be of assistance grizzct, and thanks also for the kind words. We don't make a penny off any of these mixes in any way, shape or form and I admit it is nice to hear that our efforts are appreciated by those that try them. Good luck with your experimenting with C&S™ Ultra. :T
 
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