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I have been into DYI screen paint but have not come to solid conclusion about what to try. I am a member in AVS and SilverFire is the only one being shoved down our throats. I did a search for any opinion outside AVS and found this forum. Wow, to think I almost painted over my new 150'' white Elite with SF. This DIY thread is informative, scientific and highly needed.

Now I will pose this question, what screen paint would be best for my setup?
I use a 150'' White Elite pulldown with so called 1.1 gain.
I have an Epson 8100,18 ft throw distance, only use in light controlled room.Always on highest lumen output setting.
Room is large,medium grey walls,14ft high ceiling painted white

I would like to achieve higher gain and deeper blacks from a grey paint.I want to paint over the white on my screen. Does this sound possible or just silly and live with screen as is?
 

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Hi tree109, welcome to the forum! :wave:

Yeah, the screen mix recommendations at AVS DIY Screens are slim these days; about the only mixes being offered there are neutral gray paints with added polyurethane and RS-MaxxMudd/Silver Fire. We are doing some testing of the former and can't recommend the latter. To get the low-down on SF read it's review thread here.

Between our mixes (Cream&Sugar™, Elektra™, Scorpion™ and Black Widow™) we have screen mixes covering gray shades from N9 (almost white) to N7.5 (a darker gray), and many HT's can have very capable screens with simple OTS (off-the-shelf) neutral gray paints without added polyurethane.

There is a problem with your request for a gray screen with a peak gain higher than 1.1, in order to obtain that goal the resulting screen would have a reduced viewing angle (viewing cone) and would probably hot spot. I hate to say it, but the developers, and many of the promoters, of SF simply don't understand what screen gain is or how it works. There is a topic in our Sticky index titled "Gain and other confusing topics" that you would probably benefit reading. ;)

We need to know what "mode" you run your 8100 in, and there are many that you could be using since this is a very versatile PJ. There are significant brightness differences between some of the modes.

To quote from ProjectorCentral's review: "The Dynamic mode at default settings on our test unit pumps out 1749 lumens, and boosting brightness and contrast push it over the stated 1800 lumen spec.

There are several precalibrated modes appropriate for dark room home theater. Natural mode measured 598 lumens, Theater was 525, Theater Black 1 was 442, and Theater Black 2 (a warmer 5500K setting for b/w film viewing) was 402 lumens.

There is also a brighter Living Room mode that generates 825 lumens at factory defaults. The default color temperature in this mode is 7500K according to the menu. When in Living Room mode, if you move color temperature to 6500K, you end up with both better color balance and a brighter image. Lumen output was increased to 932 lumens with that change alone. So this is a very bright operating mode for good color, and a good compromise between the theater modes and Dynamic. There is again some sacrifice of black level and contrast, but in low ambient light, Living Room is a viable alternative."
 

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With a 150" screen, I am not sure that increased gain would be a good thing, unless viewing it from a long distance. What is the room like?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
With a 150" screen, I am not sure that increased gain would be a good thing, unless viewing it from a long distance. What is the room like?
I have 20x22 ft room with vaulted ceilings with a peak at 16 feet. only use at night. I use living room mode and dynamic mode with bulb set at normal.
 

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At that kind of viewing distance with that size screen, a higher gain seems like a poor idea to me.
 

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For a 150" screen, I don't see a better option than your Elite. What I would concentrate on for the moment is getting your black and white levels adjusted properly, if they aren't already. You really are at the limit for your projector with a 150" screen. I haven't read the review that Don talked of at PJCentral, but with some of those settings comes trade offs - ie shorter bulb life. Get a calibration disc and check your brightness and contrast settings.

Silver Fire hot spots. I'd stay away from that or the hyphenated mix.
 

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Do you think I would get a better picture using black widow mix?
No. You'd get a dimmer picture from BW than what you currently have. At whatever mode they use for the calculator, you're already at 11fL with a 1.1 gain screen. Dropping to a .9 gain screen would drop the fL to 9.

I mean no offense tree, but I would look into a smaller screen. Something like a 135" or less. Then you can run the projector in one of the lower modes and not have to worry about the trade offs.
 

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With a 150" screen using living room mode you are getting 13.8 fL., that goes up to 26 fL. in dynamic mode. Due to your zoom setting, knock about 10% off those values to get about 12.5 fL and 23.5 fL. respectively. Allow another 50% lose over the life of the lamp for dimming due to usage and you get minimum values of 6.2 fL. and 11.7 fL. Most people are happy with a screen brilliance of 12 fL., but some prefer around 16 fL. (which is where movie theater screens are supposed to be at). All these figures are for a 1.0 gain screen.

If you wanted to try a darker screen you could paint your Elite screen with Cream&Sugar™ which is a N9 gray that has a gain of .98. That would not affect your image brightness much, but give you a small boost in image contrast, color depth and black level.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks, It looks like I will get better blacks after all. Cream and sugar it is! I have calibrated very well. I am satisfied with that. Just would like slightly blacker blacks.
 

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tree another hearty welcome to the Shack!

I was down in PA picking up my wife who was down helping our daughter with our new grandson!

Anyway I see the guys have already answered up and are getting you going in the right direction. Believe it or not we've tried to present all this over there too but it never goes over well so we all decided to just stay away from there.

Again though... welcome and I hope you find what you're looking for! We're not afraid to talk about DIY or commercial. Each have their benefits that's for sure. :)
 
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