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Discussion Starter #1
First I should tell you that I know nothing about projectors and screens, so please be patient with the remedial questions.

I'm helping a friend with his basement home theater. There is no drywall yet, so cable runs are no problem at this point.

My neighbor will predominantly use his home theater to watch sports and he doesn't want to dim the lights in the room to do so. There are some small basement windows, but they are 50' away.

Initially he and I though an 80" monitor would be better than a pj and screen simply because, in the past, lights needed to be dimmed when pj's where used. Recently I've been told this isn't the case and projectors are bright enough that ambient light really isn't an issue.

Is ambient light an issue anymore? Are projectors good for watching sports? If so, what pj/ screen combination would you suggest for a $4k budget?

Room width is 14.5' x 18' long. Main seating will be 11-12' away, so I suppose a 110" screen would be appropriate. If it matters, we will be running 7.2 or 9.2.

Thanks!
 

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Well, yes and no. How much do you want to spend? ambient light will still make it difficult to give good contrast and black levels will only be as black as the light you allow to hit those areas of the screen.
Your budget will dictate what and if you can go with a projector or not. $4000 for just the screen and projector or is the speakers and receiver also included in that? Screens can be found in both White and Grey and in your situation a grey screen would be the best choice to help boost the black levels.
 

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There are a number of projectors in the $3000 range that would be good for use in your situation. The Panasonic AE8000, Epson PowerLite Pro Cinema 9350, and the JVC X35 also comes to mind.
 

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I have a Panasonic AE-7000, and it works really well for sports. I pretty much leave all my lights on except for the screen wash lights - those I dim all the way out. I think you would be fine going with the projector / screen combo.

And, Tony listed three good ones in that price range. Are you adverse to building your own screen? If not, you could save a bit of money from your budget there as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the suggestions, I'll look into those projectors. When you leave the lights on would you say the projected image is as bright as a LED monitor would be?
 

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No, however what you loose in some brightness you gain in size. You cant beat a 110" image for the "wow factor"
 

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I think these are all good suggestions.... I'd also read the reviews on projectorcentral and projectorreviews as they frequently highlight sports and interpolation modes that can help with fast motion.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the suggestions. I've discussed these different options with my neighbor and he's settled on a large monitor. Thanks again
 
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