Tidy home unit setup... & THE BENEFITS OF MASKING!! - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 55 Old 04-02-2009, 07:04 AM
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Nice looking setup. Am I the only one that feels pity for that hd-dvd player getting crushed by that big Denon? lol
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post #32 of 55 Old 04-02-2009, 03:17 PM
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Funny the differences in preferences and visual perceptions - LOL - We have a Da-lite gray screen and it not only reflects almost no light back into the room the null image areas caused by scaling of different aspect ratio content a.k.a. "black bars" are almost invisible with the gray screen.

We love our screen and happy our visual experience isn't affected by scaling bars - no need for masking with our setup.
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post #33 of 55 Old 05-28-2009, 06:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imjay View Post

Funny the differences in preferences and visual perceptions - LOL - We have a Da-lite gray screen and it not only reflects almost no light back into the room the null image areas caused by scaling of different aspect ratio content a.k.a. "black bars" are almost invisible with the gray screen.

We love our screen and happy our visual experience isn't affected by scaling bars - no need for masking with our setup.

Almost invisible... but not completely invisible!
And you're not getting all the other benefits, as listed earlier...
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...4#post15757254
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post #34 of 55 Old 05-30-2009, 05:49 PM
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Cool stuff.

I'm so in to the benefits of masking I was masking my plasma (for 2:35:1) and using a black backdrop behind it for many years. It made a huge difference to the perceived image quality and viewing experience.

I'm getting close to finishing my HT reno, in which I'm turning a room in our house into a home theater/listening room. Black around the screen and masking is mandatory for my tastes. I'm doing a screen with a 61" tall by 124" wide screen area, with motorized 4 way masking (using a Carada Masquerade for top/bottom masking and a roller panel system for side masking from a curtain company). Using the projector zoom I can have the image masked at whatever size/shape I wish. (I found I didn't want to be limited to either constant-image-width or constant-image-height).

The ceiling is actually a dark brown fabric treatment. Fabric kills reflections better than paint and it's allowing some acoustic treatment to be put invisibly on the ceiling. Chocolate brown curtains hang on either side of the screen and can be pulled forward along the side walls, up to 8 feet or so, to cut wall reflections. Windows will have automated black out blinds. Projector will be in cabinet hidden behind sofa so it doesn't interfere with the window view during day. A lift mechanism will pop it up for viewing.

Here's a Googlesketchup of the idea:

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post #35 of 55 Old 05-31-2009, 09:45 AM
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Electric_Haggis,

Your set up looks very neat and nice, but I have questions. It appears you are using the curtains as the default "side" of your screen, to vary the screen width?

I can see the warping of the side lines because the curtain fabric doesn't hang perfectly straight. Doesn't the lack of straight edge on the sides of the picture bother you?

Also, typically in masking an image you want the masking as close to the screen surface as possible, to avoid shadowing of the masks on the screen. Do you not see
this problem in your set up?

Thanks.
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post #36 of 55 Old 05-31-2009, 02:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post

Cool stuff.

I'm so in to the benefits of masking I was masking my plasma (for 2:35:1) and using a black backdrop behind it for many years. It made a huge difference to the perceived image quality and viewing experience.

I'm getting close to finishing my HT reno, in which I'm turning a room in our house into a home theater/listening room. Black around the screen and masking is mandatory for my tastes. I'm doing a screen with a 61" tall by 124" wide screen area, with motorized 4 way masking (using a Carada Masquerade for top/bottom masking and a roller panel system for side masking from a curtain company). Using the projector zoom I can have the image masked at whatever size/shape I wish. (I found I didn't want to be limited to either constant-image-width or constant-image-height).

The ceiling is actually a dark brown fabric treatment. Fabric kills reflections better than paint and it's allowing some acoustic treatment to be put invisibly on the ceiling. Chocolate brown curtains hang on either side of the screen and can be pulled forward along the side walls, up to 8 feet or so, to cut wall reflections. Windows will have automated black out blinds. Projector will be in cabinet hidden behind sofa so it doesn't interfere with the window view during day. A lift mechanism will pop it up for viewing.

Here's a Googlesketchup of the idea:


Fantastic. Be sure to flick your pics through when that's finished.

Looking at your diagram, I'd ask what speakers you intend to use for the front trio (big ones, hopefully), and whether you'll be going for 7.1. The rear of your room is just destined for 2 pairs of bipoles and/or dipoles!
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post #37 of 55 Old 05-31-2009, 02:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post

Electric_Haggis,

Your set up looks very neat and nice, but I have questions. It appears you are using the curtains as the default "side" of your screen, to vary the screen width?

I can see the warping of the side lines because the curtain fabric doesn't hang perfectly straight. Doesn't the lack of straight edge on the sides of the picture bother you?

Also, typically in masking an image you want the masking as close to the screen surface as possible, to avoid shadowing of the masks on the screen. Do you not see
this problem in your set up?

Thanks.

No probs with shadowing. The curtains are less than an inch from the screen surface.

There's some warping in the pics because I didn't fully correct the curtain edge as I normally would. Ideally, you'd use thicker, heavier curtains with weights sewn into the edges.
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post #38 of 55 Old 05-31-2009, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electric_Haggis View Post

Fantastic. Be sure to flick your pics through when that's finished.

Looking at your diagram, I'd ask what speakers you intend to use for the front trio (big ones, hopefully), and whether you'll be going for 7.1. The rear of your room is just destined for 2 pairs of bipoles and/or dipoles!

I'm using Hales speakers - a defunct company who would be familiar to long-time audiophiles. I loved their product so much I tracked down probably the last existing 2 pairs of their stand-mounted "Transcendence" reference monitors and one of the few reference "Transcendence" center channels. The L/R monitors produce a super smooth, full sound and the center channel does the same but it's a monster-size and goes even lower than the L/Rs. No need for a sub (I don't want one, actually).

So I'm doing a 7.0 system, with two fx channels to the side and 2 more on the rear on the walls behind the sofa. I'm using the Monitor Audio Bronze
series for the surround channels as luckily they have a tonal signature very close to the Hales.

I'm also pre-wired for possible future channels like Dolby Height channels above the L/R of the screen.

By the way, I find another benefit to black surrounding the screen wall: making the speakers disappear visually. One thing I've noticed is that if I can see the speakers I tend to be aware of where the sound is coming from.
I've experimented with having a black background and putting black fabric on the speakers. When the lights go down the speakers utterly disappear against the back-ground. Just can't see 'em. Once this happens I find my mind just maps the sound I'm hearing on to the image much more easily.

I like the idea of an AT system for the clean aesthetics and for the sound-coming-from-the-image factor. However, I'm super picky about speakers and in-walls don't do it for me. (Nor do I have the room to do an AT screen with speakers the size of my Hales).
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post #39 of 55 Old 05-31-2009, 05:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Hats off to you, Mr Harkness.

That's going to be an absolutely model system.

Send us those pics when you're done!
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post #40 of 55 Old 11-22-2009, 05:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Just for the record, I've recently put in two small but significant additions.

* A pair of 600 x 600mm acoustic tiles.
Helps tame rear wall reflections and looks quite decent too!

* An 850mm-wide x 1000mm-high bass trap that doubles as a corner-stand.
This is filled with triangles of 48 kg/m³ polyester bats.










I've updated the pics at the start of this thread.
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post #41 of 55 Old 10-15-2010, 05:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Another recent addition is an upgraded acoustic panel for the back wall.

It's just a thin 1200 x 600 plywood board, onto which is glued a sheet of acoustifoam, followed by two 600 x 600 tiles of Cheops Pyramids.

The original intention was to use a polyester bat, rather than the foam, but this proved a little unwieldy this time around.

It's screwed to the back wall with an air-gap of about an inch. This slightly helps its bass-trapping qualities.



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post #42 of 55 Old 10-16-2010, 09:49 AM
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Hi Electric_Haggis,

You requested pictures when my room was finished so here you go. It was finished last spring. Here again is the Google Sketchup idea for the room:



And here is the finished room, with black out blinds 1/2 way down:


If you click the links below my name you can see lots more photos, including the masking in action and descriptions of how I built the system in my build thread.

The screen size takes up most of the wall, with usable screen area of about 124" wide to 62" tall. I combined the Carada top/bottom masking system with a remote controlled Goelst curtain/panel system for side masking. The commands are made into macros on my RTI universal remote (which has been a Godsend). I can alter the size and aspect ratio of the screen to my hearts content. Right now I have around 16 pre-set image ARs and sizes (for various sizes of 16:9, 2:35:1 and 4:3 ARs) and don't feel the need for more.

If I want to change an image size from, say, a 105" diagonal 16:9 to a 118" wide CinemaScope image, I simply press the image size button I want (118" - WIDE) and the whole screen wall looks like it starts changing shape. At the same time the projector's lens pattern appears on the screen.
I just have to press zoom-out and by the time the masking has found the new shape, the image zooms out to meet the new size. One more press of the lens shift up or down and the image fits perfectly in the masking. Takes about 13 seconds from the comfort of my sofa and it's actually fun as heck to do (really impresses guests seeing the image change size like that).

I absolutely LOVE being able to vary the image size to my desire. Sometimes I want a huge image, other times depending on mood or source material/quality I like it smaller. I can watch a movie like Avatar at up to around 135" diagonal which feels downright IMAX-like from my 10.5 foot viewing distance.

As you have already extolled, there's nothing like having pitch black around the image to increase the vividness, dimensionality and professionalism of the image. The first time I put up my Carada masking, put up a 2:35:1 movie and then activated the masks to see the "black bars" disappear was incredibly satisfying. There was just something professional and "complete" about what it did for the image. Without the masking it feels a bit hackneyed.

And it still never ceases to amaze me how masking makes a difference. Occasionally if I don't get the image perfectly within the masking (say if the movie is a slightly narrower AR than 2:35:1) I can see thin projected black bars above/below the image. They are so dark I could almost imagine it wouldn't make a difference to cover them up "who would notice?" But then I jog the masks to cover those thin bars up and...wow...adding that perfect, crisp, pitch black edge around the image really DOES make a difference. It just looks better. Taking care of the little details in image presentation really does add up to a bigger difference than one might imagine.

(It's funny because guests to my place to watch movies have often viewed movies on other projection set ups at friends places. But they all say that somehow it all seems better at mine, and it's like they are focused on and taken away into the movie more, even though they can't put their finger on why).

Anyway, good stuff on your set up! That's really resourceful work on your end.
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post #43 of 55 Old 10-16-2010, 05:44 PM
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Just buy a gray screen. You can hardly see the null area "bars" as you PJ tries to scale and show wider content than its native specs.

Masking is a pain-in-the-butt, expensive and silly exercise - just IMO - totally unnecessary - bright white screens just can't do the job of a gray, high contrast screen.

That's our personal experience.
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post #44 of 55 Old 10-16-2010, 05:57 PM
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RH, that's a neat set up you have there, and I've snaffled a few ideas from your room to add to my 'consideration list' for my apartment.
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post #45 of 55 Old 10-16-2010, 06:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imjay View Post

Just buy a gray screen. You can hardly see the null area "bars" as you PJ tries to scale and show wider content than its native specs.

Masking is a pain-in-the-butt, expensive and silly exercise - just IMO - totally unnecessary - bright white screens just can't do the job of a gray, high contrast screen.

That's our personal experience.


Hhmmm..... Sure you've tried masking? Certainly doesn't sound like it.

Costwise, my matte white 1-gain screen costs a couple of hundred dollars.
The masking was another coupla hundred.

Labour-wise, you can knock up a setup like mine in around half a day if you play your cards right.

I've seen the hi-con gray screens in action. Personally, I'd actually rather have a lesser pj with masking than a superior pj without it.

A bit like a high-end sound system in a crap room vs a passable system in a great room, really...
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post #46 of 55 Old 10-16-2010, 06:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imjay View Post

Just buy a gray screen. You can hardly see the null area "bars" as you PJ tries to scale and show wider content than its native specs.

Masking is a pain-in-the-butt, expensive and silly exercise - just IMO - totally unnecessary - bright white screens just can't do the job of a gray, high contrast screen.

That's our personal experience.

It may be a "silly exercise" and "totally unnecessary" in your eyes, but not to a number of other people. I've seen almost all the gray screens in action, including the Black Diamond screens which are much darker than yours. Black bars are always visible. If you can't see them that's a fact about you, but not about others.

When you say "bright white screens just can't do the job of a gray, high contrast screen" it depends what job you want them to do, for goodness sake.

Most gray screens have their own issues. If it's a flat gray screen with no gain then you are significantly lowering light reflection and for most good quality consumer projectors this means limiting your screen size to the smallish range. Whereas with the advent of HD sources people have been going the opposite direction, looking for bigger screen experiences.

If you have a gray screen with gain then you are going to have hotspotting, uneven reflection, and typically the screen gain coating is visible as a speckled texture over the image (never seen a gray screen with gain that did not have this issue). Might not bother some people, but these things are quite distracting to others, like me. I literally would not use one if given to me for free.

With a white screen that is neutral or modest gain you can get very even reflection, no visible hotspotting, and a much smoother screen material that can be more "invisible" for a more natural looking image. Not to mention you get a brighter image, and can also have a bigger image, which is quite significant.

So one can reverse what you say and point out that "gray screens just can't do the job of a white screen." That is they can't do the job of getting a brighter image (for a bigger image if desired) while simultaneously offering wide viewing angles and reduced screen artifacts.

But, of course, you just need to decide which job you need your screen to do and pick the material accordingly...rather than hold rash ideas on what is "better" over all.

As to masking, it's one of those finishing touches that add to the presentation. Most people who experience something like the Carada Masquerade in action, even non-AV types, go "wow" when they see those black bars disappear (that includes people using gray screens too, like the Stewart Firehawk). Of course lots of people don't want to go the the effort of masking, but those who want to edge the presentation even further to perfection will do so. In any industry, it's always people who sweat the little details who are responsible for improving performance in anything we might end up using ourselves. Sweating what seem like the "little" details in home theater often pays rewarding dividends.

Finally, as to "pain in the ass to mask" at least with my system nothing could be further from the truth. From my sofa I just have to choose between 1 and three button presses and I'm watching an entirely new image shape, perfectly masked surrounded by pitch black. One would have to be paralyzed simply by the thought of using a remote control to consider that a PIA.
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post #47 of 55 Old 11-14-2013, 07:04 PM
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Sorry to bring this thread back from the dead but I wanted to say that the setup is extremely nice and a great example of how a projector can be put into so many rooms people often assume couldn't accommodate one.

As for the grey screen idea, it would be a horrible idea with this projector or the w7000 as you can manually clamp the iris which would have the exact same effect. So a grey screen is not the way to go.
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post #48 of 55 Old 11-14-2013, 10:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FilmReverie View Post

Sorry to bring this thread back from the dead but I wanted to say that the setup is extremely nice and a great example of how a projector can be put into so many rooms people often assume couldn't accommodate one.

As for the grey screen idea, it would be a horrible idea with this projector or the w7000 as you can manually clamp the iris which would have the exact same effect. So a grey screen is not the way to go.


Don't apologise! Thanks for resuscitating the thread.

Re Gray screens, you're right and I've learnt this myself.

I haven't found a way to clamp the black level down with the W6000 and save it in the settings so that it sticks. If you know the secret, I'd love to know too!!

I've actually moved house twice since starting this thread!
You can see the latest place to the left, by clicking on my thumbnail.

A year or so ago, I made the whole masking thing modular and "portable", by making a 3m-wide pinewood frame that screws together and comes apart.
The screen (which is a sheet of specially painted $10 2.4m wide 9mm-tick MDF board), the curtain tracks, top roller-blind and black material at the bottom all just screw onto the frame.
So there's no need for fixtures in a rental property.
Works a treat and we're very happy with it:)
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post #49 of 55 Old 11-14-2013, 11:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electric_Haggis View Post

Don't apologise! Thanks for resuscitating the thread.

Re Gray screens, you're right and I've learnt this myself.

I haven't found a way to clamp the black level down with the W6000 and save it in the settings so that it sticks. If you know the secret, I'd love to know too!!

I've actually moved house twice since starting this thread!
You can see the latest place to the left, by clicking on my thumbnail.

A year or so ago, I made the whole masking thing modular and "portable", by making a 3m-wide pinewood frame that screws together and comes apart.
The screen (which is a sheet of specially painted $10 2.4m wide 9mm-tick MDF board), the curtain tracks, top roller-blind and black material at the bottom all just screw onto the frame.
So there's no need for fixtures in a rental property.
Works a treat and we're very happy with it:)

I know the secret for the w7000 which I assume is the same. I shall post it later tonight once I have my projector on so I can give the exact names and how one does it.

I recently just ordered a 110" Da-lite 2.4 HP screen as my main goal is to have brilliant 3d and really for 3d you can't go to bright (as I can just clamp the iris if it indeed is to bright for 2d or 3d). I am very interested to see what the w7500 will bring, if the blacks are a notable improvement I think I shall get one. I also noticed you are also from Australia, the greatest land of all. biggrin.gif
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post #50 of 55 Old 11-15-2013, 12:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FilmReverie View Post

I know the secret for the w7000 which I assume is the same. I shall post it later tonight once I have my projector on so I can give the exact names and how one does it.

I recently just ordered a 110" Da-lite 2.4 HP screen as my main goal is to have brilliant 3d and really for 3d you can't go to bright (as I can just clamp the iris if it indeed is to bright for 2d or 3d). I am very interested to see what the w7500 will bring, if the blacks are a notable improvement I think I shall get one. I also noticed you are also from Australia, the greatest land of all. biggrin.gif

Thanks mate!
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post #51 of 55 Old 11-15-2013, 04:02 AM
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To change the iris setting do the following:
- firstly note when doing this you cannot use the dynamic iris as per usual as that is what you are you using to control the brightness. To me this is a moot point as I find near on every DI obvious and especially in the case of this projector, not very well done.
- ensure that dynamic black is set to off in 'Picture -- Advanced'
- click menu then go across to 'Information' (far right option)
- press, up followed by down three times then press enter (this can take more then one attempt as if your projector doesn't detect one of the presses it shan't work)
- you should now have the service menu open
- scroll across right to option 8, or click left twice
- ensure 'dynamic black' is set to off then press right on 'dynamic black reset'
- next move the 'aperture position' down to the desired level along with the 'aperture minimum' (they should be the same number), leave the 'Aperture Max' and 'Aperture Strength' at there default values
- leave the menu open for a few seconds and then press menu
- you are done smile.gif

- In the future if you want to change the aperture setting you just have to go to the service menu and change the 'aperture position' and 'aperture minimum' to the desired level.


Let me know if this does or doesn't work for you, it works with the w7000 though it sadly doesn't save the aperture settings for 2d and 3d separately. smile.gif
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post #52 of 55 Old 11-15-2013, 02:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you very very much !

I'm looking forward to trying this out tonight....

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post #53 of 55 Old 11-16-2013, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Adjusted the aperture last night. The menus are a little different with the W6000 but I figured it out.
A setting of 10 (default is 12) is still plenty bright, but with slightly deeper black level.
Thanks again!
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post #54 of 55 Old 02-03-2014, 04:57 AM
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I love this thread. I get really distracted by the gray bars. I have a 16:9 screen, and yet find myself watching 2.35:1 like 80% of the time. So I've been looking for a poor mans way of having a 2.35:1 screen and I think this is the way I'm going to go for now. Just mask out my screen like the examples you've show up top and manually adjust the mask as needed. Great solution!

That's wasn't flying... That was falling with style!
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post #55 of 55 Old 02-05-2014, 03:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Great to hear!
That's what this thread's all about.

Good luck....You will be stunned at such a big improvement for so little dollar$
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Benq W6000 1080p Dlp Projector , Marantz Av7005 Pre Processor , Samson , Infinity Es 250 Bipole Dipole Dual Monopole Surround Speaker
Gear in this thread - Av7005 by PriceGrabber.com

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