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The wife and I went out all day Saturday looking for basement stuff....Bar cabinets, theater chairs, receiver, screen. After going to 3 home theater stores and getting priced screens from 900-3000, I thought I would stop by Hobby Lobby on the way home and see what they had. I found this material that was white and had a thin rubber back side. I got 3 yards for 5.99 a yard with a 30% off special they were running. So I ended up paying 12 dollars for the stuff. I took it home and just hung it up in the theater room to see what it looked like. It really impressed me, so it looks like that I am going to run with it. I still have to finish the HT and then build a frame for the fabric.

The material in the pictures is 54"x112"...so it is something like 130ish corner to corner. Projector is Epson 8100 not calibrated and is a standard DVD straight HDMI into the projector. The projector is about 15' from the screen. Also, the pics are taken with my iPhone, so not great quality, but enough to give you an idea. Also all are live shots, sorry I didn't pause it.

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Cant beat that deal................Hobby Lobby cleans out my wallet everytime we go there, Liz loves the place for craft stuff and for metal art and knick knacks I love it too.............I bet we dropped $300 in there in last month and they have been having a huge sale so we got everything discounted from more like $600. Changes to the look of your home gets pricey but HL is a good place to start.
I think you have the making of a great screen there!
 

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Hi Abs777,

The fabric you purchased certainly sounds like Black Out Cloth to me as well. If it is similar to the BOC I bought at JoAnn Fabrics it is a nice neutral N9 gray. N9 is such a light gray that most people would say it is a true white unless they have a truly white item to compare it to side-be-side.

BOC has a lot going for it as a DIY screen and unless you are planning on using the screen with a fair amount of ambient light present it will do just fine with your Epson 8100. Your PJ is bright enough so that you could use a darker gray screen if you wish, but that is up to you and it would require the BOC to be painted.

Another popular DIY screen forum likes to downplay the effectiveness of BOC screens saying that the gain of such screens is too low. Simply stated, they don't know what they are talking about. Most of the screen mixes recommended by that forum are very high in mica-based paints and also contain quite a bit of satin polyurethane. These ingredients will raise the gain of the screen mix, but keep in mind that doing this will narrow the viewing cone of the screen (BOC has a nice wide viewing cone) and hot spotting can easily occur (every mix of theirs that I have tested did hot spot).

If you want to get better black levels than the BOC can give you, or you want to have better ambient light performance, we can recommend a few DIY mixes to you; but my recommendation would be to use your BOC screen as is for awhile and if it ain't broke, don't fix it. ;)
 

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These ingredients will raise the gain of the screen mix, but keep in mind that doing this will narrow the viewing cone of the screen (BOC has a nice wide viewing cone) and hot spotting can easily occur (every mix of theirs that I have tested did hot spot).
I personally don't like to refer to these methods as 'gain', rather they definitely add sheen and specularity. When specularity increases, hot spotting is going to happen. Sometimes it is minor and I have seen some people call this 'warm spotting' and pass it off as 'pop', 'zing'... 'wow'... anything that sounds catchy. There is no such thing as warm spotting though, hot spotting is hot spotting. I don't know if mech has done any gain tests on BOC, if not we'll get some.

It is a fine line to walk that is for sure, and at the other place Don mentioned gain is often an abused term and definitely mis-stated or not understood.

To categorically make a statement that encompasses everything like some places do without any actual testing is not very responsible. There are different brands of BOC, some are a brighter/whiter white so some will be a bit brighter than others. The problem with guessing gain by eye or even holding up a piece of something else and judging by eye is it simply isn't accurate.

Most of the time in the world of DIY unless something is way out in left field it can be used as a screen. It may not be optimal or the 'best', but many things certainly can and do 'work'... even some of the 'special advanced mixes' (that are so complex nobody including the developer seems to be able to make two mixes the same!) can be used- but it doesn't mean they are the 'best'. In this case, without any standards or proof, it's just an opinion and that's it.

The reason I am so tough on standards is because some people out there are so tough, dare I say wild even, on claims. It's easy to say something when you don't have to back it up. We back up everything we say and recommend.

Sorry for the sidetrack, it is important though for people to know and understand who or what they are dealing with. If a claim or statement sounds wild, or even questionable... just ask for some proof. :)

I agree with Don, if it's not broke, don't fix it.

If you like your screen then use it. All projector manufacturers test and Quality Control their projectors to a unity gain white screen. What that means is in order to see exactly what your projector can produce under factory conditions you need to see it on a unity gain white screen, and BOC has always been deemed an 'acceptable' white screen with a unity gain or very very close to a unity gain. I am a very strong advocate of everyone doing a baseline calibration on a unity gain white screen before just jumping to any gray screen, whether it is a commercial gray, DIY OTS neutral gray, or a more advanced gray. Without a baseline, a person can't tell whether they actually improved the image or maybe they made it worse... but without seeing the factory tested conditions first... you'll never know. I think some people don't want people to see a baseline, or worse- to see what a real D65 neutral screen looks like that doesn't employ lots of micas and poly that refract and cause specularity and color shifting.

Use your screen and enjoy it. If you are curious, at least you have something you are happy with right now so spend some time reading through things carefully. And make sure to dig a bit deeper too and look at the history of things. We back up everything we say and recommend and can show both the data as well as 'empirical' proof. Not everyone can say that.
 

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The key to a proper screen is D65. Your HL BOC is probably pretty close to neutral. The second consideration is to keep the screen from creating artifacts or other unwanted issues with the projected image. BOC adds nothing to the picture. :T Keep what you have unless you need your blacks a bit blacker or you have ambient light.

I am one of the few (Harp is another and there may be another) who has actually tested numerous mixes from here and from avs forum. I don't think anyone on the planet has done as much as we have here. It takes a lot of time and money. And maybe a lack of sanity.... :dumbcrazy:
 

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The key to a proper screen is D65. Your HL BOC is probably pretty close to neutral. The second consideration is to keep the screen from creating artifacts or other unwanted issues with the projected image. BOC adds nothing to the picture. :T Keep what you have unless you need your blacks a bit blacker or you have ambient light.

I am one of the few (Harp is another and there may be another) who has actually tested numerous mixes from here and from avs forum. I don't think anyone on the planet has done as much as we have here. It takes a lot of time and money. And maybe a lack of sanity.... :dumbcrazy:
What is D65? Also, would there be a considerable difference between a painted screen and this one?

Thanks!
 

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What is D65? Also, would there be a considerable difference between a painted screen and this one?

Thanks!
Bill has an excellent write-up on a bunch of the terminology used by the industry here. D65 is right near the beginning. The short version is that it represents 6503 degrees kelvin, which represents mid day light in north central Europe, which is the standard that all video is processed to. It's the neutral standard.

As for the difference between a painted screen and what you have, it depends. There are folks who will bend over backwards and tell you that there is, but I'd avoid them like the plague. What's important is what you want and need. Not what they think you want and need. :T

If you want darker blacks in a room with considerable ambient light, then yes, we can do much better than the BOC. :bigsmile: And we can do so while holding true to the industry standards.
 

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Thanks so much. The room is completely light controlled and will be a dedicated theater. I have seen some people who swear by the painting method, but I have never seen a painted screen in person and didn't know if it would be worth the extra work (buying a sprayer, worrying about mixing properly, worry about spraying properly). I might try the BOC and see how it looks when the room is finished.
 

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Thanks so much. The room is completely light controlled and will be a dedicated theater. I have seen some people who swear by the painting method, but I have never seen a painted screen in person and didn't know if it would be worth the extra work (buying a sprayer, worrying about mixing properly, worry about spraying properly). I might try the BOC and see how it looks when the room is finished.
Since you are building a dedicated HT I assume the walls, floor and ceiling will be finished quite dark, if that is the case your BOC screen will work superbly with the room lights off. :T In fact, if you design the lighting properly there can even be some lights on without significantly degrading the projected image; the key is to have as little light as possible show up on the screen surface. Directional and shaded lighting can help a lot with that.

Where people benefit most from DIY screen mixes is when they have to use a family room or play room as a sometimes-theater. Such rooms are rarely "projector friendly" and usually have light colored walls and ceiling, and many times windows to deal with. Darker screens are usually part of the answer to such arrangements and the best such screens, imo, are painted.

BTW, the screen mixes we advocate here can be rolled as well as sprayed, and they are far simpler to mix than the ones from that other place. ;) Also, we take designing our mixes to be color neutral very seriously, they don't. Screens that are not color-neutral will "push" the image reflected off of them away from the image colors being output by the projector. Sometimes the PJ can be adjusted to compensate for this color-push and sometimes it can't. ALL our mixes have been designed to be color-neutral and not have such a push. The same color image the PJ is shooting is reflected back to your eyes, not some off-color version of it.
 
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