Tidy home unit setup... & THE BENEFITS OF MASKING!! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 55 Old 02-05-2009, 05:06 PM - Thread Starter
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G'day all.

I moved "house" several months ago, from a unit with a 7.4m x 3.6m living room to one that's 4 metres deep and around 4.5 wide... So pretty different.

The old curtain-rails-with-black-curtains down the side of the old room had to go, I had to drop from 4 surround speakers to 2, and the screen size had to drop from 106" to 92".

So it's all a lot more "lifestyle-friendly"!



The main reason for posting these pics is to promote the idea of projection screen masking.

Having dark masking like this is quick, cheap and easy... but makes an absolutely ENORMOUS difference to the perceived picture.

There's also a layer of absorbent material behind the screen and surrounding area. Of course, this has completely changed the sound of the room, making it far less live and pingy.


Looking at the (badly taken) pics, you'll see that there's a matte-black roller blind, which comes down to eliminate letterbox bars. I had this made by a blind shop for around $80, and in my case, it's screwed to the screen's headbox (of course, you can mount it wherever you like so long as it works).

Above the headbox, there's a simple curtain rail, with two matte-black curtains on either side of the screen... That's it.

The projector has a vertical lens shift, and can zoom the picture from 75" to 92", with the bottom of the picture always in line with the bottom of the screen.

What we'll generally do is run 1.78 / 1.85 films & TV at a size of around 80 inches, and 2.35 scope films at 92 inches.


If you want to have a "common bottom-line" setup like this, one thing to be aware of is the latitude of your projector's lens shift. This just takes a bit of experimenting before you install.
I have a BenQ W5000 (which I love) but its lens shift limitations meant I had to mount it a little lower than originally intended, so that a 2.40 picture would line up with the bottom of the screen.

What about subtitles that appear outside 2.35 letterbox area if you don't have a DVD/Blu player that allows subtitle-shifting?
They can either appear below the screen onto the black area below (albeit dimmer), or the picture can be racked up with the bottom letterbox area hitting the screen.

To pull the sofa forward and adjust everything would take up to 30 seconds, but makes all the difference in the world !



EQUIPMENT LIST (since updated - pics are old):

Projector: Benq W6000
Surround pre-pro: Marantz AV7005
Power amps: Samson Servo-150 for side surrounds. All other speakers are active.
Projection screen: One sheet of 3mm MDF - 2400 x 1200 mm, painted to roughly 0.9 gain.
Speakers - Front: KRK Rokit 10-3 for front three speakers.
Speakers - Surround: Infinity BETA ES-250 for side surrounds (in dipole mode), KRK Rokit 5 for rear surrounds.
Subwoofer: Gone !
Blu-ray / Region 4 DVD: Sony PS3 Slim 120Gb
HDDVD / Other region DVD:
Toshiba HD-EP10
HDTV: Sony SVR-HD700
CD: Arcam Alpha 8 (with LClock X03 mod)
Stereo pre-pro: Creek OBH-22 passive
Rack monitor: 23.6" NeonIQ LED TV (doubles as PC monitor and TV)
HT PC running a 1920x1080 desktop



























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post #2 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 02:13 AM
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Hey electric, I have been looking at roller blinds that are remote controlled, that would drop down to the desired height, I am big into automation.

I found a few but they were pretty expensive. Do you know if that would work in my setup.

Im hoping the blind rod, would attach to my electric screen projector case.

And then I could make a macro in my mx-810, where the roller drops and the projector lens shifts down with the press of one button.

I just dont know if it would work, im still kind of lost, but I would like to go your route.
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post #3 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 06:07 AM
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Nice little setup. How far is your seating from the screen?

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post #4 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 06:17 AM
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Forgive my ignorance but assume the masking is done to minimize the effect of the top/bottom horizontal black image bars due to scaling by 16:9 PJ of much wider movie aspect ratio content.

We chose to use a gray Da-lite fixed wall screen and the gray does two significant things - in our opinion.

One is that it almost eliminates the visibility of the black bars to a very satisfactory degree and the Second is it reflects almost no light back into the viewing room which also in our opinion enhances the "Theater" effect - we were simply astounded at how much light our first screen - a white one - reflected back into our eyes and the viewing room so gray did the trick for us.
Best of Luck
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post #5 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 08:07 AM
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dumb question - why is your projector angled like that?

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I have no idea what you are referring to
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post #6 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 12:26 PM
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Very nicely done setup! Definitely evidence that a nice FP can happen virtually anywhere. What are your mains and center?
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post #7 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 02:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antwon412 View Post

dumb question - why is your projector angled like that?

Because the front and back walls aren't perpendicular to each other. The front wall has an angle of around 20 degrees.
The sofa also has to be angled like that when watching.
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post #8 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 02:28 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blasst View Post

Nice little setup. How far is your seating from the screen?

Seating from the screen will vary from 2.2 metres, to 3.6 metres, which is all the way up against the back wall.
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post #9 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 02:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imjay View Post

Forgive my ignorance but assume the masking is done to minimize the effect of the top/bottom horizontal black image bars due to scaling by 16:9 PJ of much wider movie aspect ratio content.

We chose to use a gray Da-lite fixed wall screen and the gray does two significant things - in our opinion.

One is that it almost eliminates the visibility of the black bars to a very satisfactory degree and the Second is it reflects almost no light back into the viewing room which also in our opinion enhances the "Theater" effect - we were simply astounded at how much light our first screen - a white one - reflected back into our eyes and the viewing room so gray did the trick for us.
Best of Luck

I'm making this bigger, for all to see...


The masking achieves a number of things...

1. No letterbox bars.

2. No pillarbox bars.

3. Allows the picture to vary in size, depending on quality and aspect of the source, number of people in the room, level of tiredness, etc.

4. Having a large area of black around the screen makes a shockingly huge perceptual difference.

5. Helps reduce the amount of light bouncing around the room.

6. Provides sound absorbtion (to a very large degree, in my room).

7. Allows a layer of acoustic material to be be placed behind to further deaden the room.

8. Actually looks a lot more attractive than just a blank wall with a plain screen.
NB: Using a more theatrical deep red material might look even better and offer more wife-approval-factor!


I've always avoided grey screens for exactly that reason - they reduce brightness way too much for my liking. They're also overpriced, and movie theatres never use them anyway.
Black masking / surrounds provides a much more theatrical effect, imo.
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post #10 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 02:46 PM
 
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Very nice setup! Can you elaborate a little on your PJ mount/wiring? As you can see from my signature, I have a living room FP setup with the BenQ (W5K, but now W20K) and am setting it on wire shelving. I like how yours allows the back of the couch against the wall and keeps it out of the way.
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post #11 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 02:47 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murilo View Post

Hey electric, I have been looking at roller blinds that are remote controlled, that would drop down to the desired height, I am big into automation.

I found a few but they were pretty expensive. Do you know if that would work in my setup.

Im hoping the blind rod, would attach to my electric screen projector case.

And then I could make a macro in my mx-810, where the roller drops and the projector lens shifts down with the press of one button.

I just dont know if it would work, im still kind of lost, but I would like to go your route.

Replied back in the Benq W5000 thread.
Not sure about the automated bit, but with a chain driven manual roller-blind, it's very little trouble.
I'd say it takes around 30 seconds to pull out the couch and adjust everything.
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post #12 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 02:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobZ View Post

Very nicely done setup! Definitely evidence that a nice FP can happen virtually anywhere. What are your mains and center?

Cheers.

Front mains are VAF Research DC-X (Generation 4).
Center speaker is the same, but rather than the standard-issue DC-6, I asked for a custom-made, larger centre that's every bit the equal of the left & right.

They're very clean, efficient and accurate - and I highly recommend them.

With the DC-X, I doubt I'd bring back the subwoofer even if I lived in a house!
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post #13 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LilGator View Post

Very nice setup! Can you elaborate a little on your PJ mount/wiring? As you can see from my signature, I have a living room FP setup with the BenQ (W5K, but now W20K) and am setting it on wire shelving. I like how yours allows the back of the couch against the wall and keeps it out of the way.

I've just got a standard microwave oven wall-bracket (around $30), along with some small rubber strips to protect the underside of the projector.

3.7 metres of Aussieduct (any wall conduit will do), runs above and takes all six cables to the side wall, where they run down the corner and travel underneath a slab of spare carpet to the AV rack.


The only cabling running to the projector (these days) is HDMI and power.
HDMI is a 10-metre Concord cable, which sells for AU$98 at Jaycar Electronics. As you'd expect - zero difference between that and expensive snake-oil cable.

Same goes for the surround speaker cables, which are two pairs of generic medium-thickness 12-guage OFC running to each speaker.


In your room, having a masking setup would make a huge difference... except perhaps with blood-red theatre curtains for higher wife-approval-factor!
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post #14 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electric_Haggis View Post

I've just got a standard microwave oven wall-bracket (around $30), along with some small rubber strips to protect the underside of the projector.

3.7 metres of Aussieduct (any wall conduit will do), runs above and takes all six cables to the side wall, where they run down the corner and travel underneath a slab of spare carpet to the AV rack.


The only cabling running to the projector (these days) is HDMI and power.
HDMI is a 10-metre Concord cable, which is sells for AU$98 at Jaycar Electronics. As you'd expect - zero difference between that and expensive snake-oil cable.

Same goes for the surround speaker cables, which are two pairs of generic medium-thickness 12-guage OFC running to each speaker.


In your room, having a masking setup would make a huge difference... except perhaps with blood-red theatre curtains for higher wife-approval-factor!

Aloha Haggis,

Damn you Aussies are smart! Such an easy and nice looking masking system. Just to be clear, you have the pull down shade screwed directly into your screen case? Is your screen electric?

Mahalo. And thanks for setting up this thread
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post #15 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdbaba View Post

Aloha Haggis,

Damn you Aussies are smart! Such an easy and nice looking masking system. Just to be clear, you have the pull down shade screwed directly into your screen case? Is your screen electric?

Mahalo. And thanks for setting up this thread

No worries.

Yep - the chain-driven manual roller blind is screwed directly to the screen's headbox.

No - the screen isn't electric. Unlike days of old, the screen never moves. Only the projector's lens shift, the blind and perhaps the side-curtains do.

Btw, I've revised my first post at the top of the page to include more details.
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post #16 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 04:29 PM
 
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NICE!!

How do you keep the blind close to the screen?

Thanks,
Scott
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post #17 of 55 Old 02-06-2009, 04:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by scottyb View Post

NICE!!

How do you keep the blind close to the screen?

Thanks,
Scott

It's mounted to the underside of the headbox, so the blind is less than a centimetre from the screen surface.
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post #18 of 55 Old 02-07-2009, 02:04 AM
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So far im having trouble finding a black roller blind that can be remote operated. I did find a vinetian blind, would this work haggis?

http://www.newblinds.co.uk/content/night_sky_matt/


Or would roller blind be better.
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post #19 of 55 Old 02-07-2009, 02:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electric_Haggis View Post

It's mounted to the underside of the headbox, so the blind is less than a centimetre from the screen surface.


Electric_Haggis,

Can you give us a closeup shot of the matte-black roller blind? Any degree of reflections coming off of it?

Looks like this might turn into a Benq 5k/20k hangout sub thread.

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post #20 of 55 Old 02-07-2009, 03:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blasst View Post

Electric_Haggis,

Can you give us a closeup shot of the matte-black roller blind? Any degree of reflections coming off of it?

Looks like this might turn into a Benq 5k/20k hangout sub thread.

Done... See updated first post.

And no - No reflections as long as it's reasonably thick, black, matte material.
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post #21 of 55 Old 02-07-2009, 03:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murilo View Post

So far im having trouble finding a black roller blind that can be remote operated. I did find a vinetian blind, would this work haggis?

http://www.newblinds.co.uk/content/night_sky_matt/


Or would roller blind be better.

Hard to tell from their website, but I've updated the pics in the first post to include close-up of the blind.
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post #22 of 55 Old 02-07-2009, 05:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electric_Haggis View Post

Done... See updated first post.

And no - No reflections as long as it's reasonably thick, black, matte material.

Thanks for the closeups. Thats what I was looking for. And hell, being non-motorized is fine. It gets our butts up to get some circulation.
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post #23 of 55 Old 02-07-2009, 08:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murilo View Post

So far im having trouble finding a black roller blind that can be remote operated. I did find a vinetian blind, would this work haggis?

http://www.newblinds.co.uk/content/night_sky_matt/


Or would roller blind be better.

Murilo,
Here is a link to Power Curtain's web site & they offer IR rmt ctl motorized roller set-up, w.o fabric:

http://www.powercurtain.com/product2.html

There a couple of reseller on eBay they sell similar products.

John
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post #24 of 55 Old 02-09-2009, 05:49 PM
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Very clever. I'm surprised this hasn't been done before - such an elegant and simple solution. I may copy this idea.
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post #25 of 55 Old 02-14-2009, 04:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Screen Shot View Post

Very clever. I'm surprised this hasn't been done before - such an elegant and simple solution. I may copy this idea.

Thanks..... but it's copyrighted.
I'll forward my bank account details, so you can deposit the royalties...
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I forgot to ask before, but what do you think of your surrounds? I'm curious as to how this would sound and may attempt something similar in the future. Bookshelves are far too localizable to me as side surrounds and because of layout are too close to the ears Rear surrounds were never an option with seating against the back wall.

I guess I'm wondering if you lose any side presence and feel it's top/rear heavy.

Did you choose the Infinity Beta's because of this ability, or do most bipole surrounds allow you to run dual-monopole? It's not something I'm familiar with, but makes perfect sense as a compromise!
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post #27 of 55 Old 02-23-2009, 05:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LilGator View Post

I forgot to ask before, but what do you think of your surrounds? I'm curious as to how this would sound and may attempt something similar in the future. Bookshelves are far too localizable to me as side surrounds and because of layout are too close to the ears Rear surrounds were never an option with seating against the back wall.

I guess I'm wondering if you lose any side presence and feel it's top/rear heavy.

Did you choose the Infinity Beta's because of this ability, or do most bipole surrounds allow you to run dual-monopole? It's not something I'm familiar with, but makes perfect sense as a compromise!

To answer your questions backwards...
* Yes, I chose the Infinity ES250 because of this. You can also use them as either dipoles or bipoles in a 5.1 setup, but of course that's a waste.
The Infinity is the only one speaker on the market that works as a dual-monopole, although JBL makes an identical "knockoff" (same parent company)...
http://www.jbl.com/home/products/pro...at=SSS&ser=PER

* In my situation, it works as well as it possibly can. The sound is diffuse, well-spread, and hard to localise, the 360-degree panning is excellent, and they blend brilliantly with the fronts.
Bear in mind that the wide lens on my camera phone tends to make them look smaller and higher up than they really are. Bear in mind also that the couch comes forward into the room when watching, and that the front speakers are huge (1.3 metres tall) with an enormous soundstage. This will always help blend the surrounds into the soundfield.

Ideally, I'd have them on the side walls, slightly closer to the floor, with the rear-facing drivers (acting as back surrounds) bouncing sound off the back wall, but it just can't be done here.
That's what I did in the last place, before eventually getting another set of bipoles for the rear wall, and just running the Infinities as bipoles. That kind of setup is absolutely ideal if you can do it.

Hard to tell from your pics, but if there's any way of having them on the side-walls (they'd be butted right up to the rear wall), running in 7.1, that'd work well.


But in a perfect world, go 7.1 with either bipoles to either side and on the back wall, or if the side walls are very close to you - dipoles to either side with bipoles on the back wall.


The best dipoles are made by Paradigm in their Monitor range. What's unique is that their tweeters run out of phase, but the bass drivers don't. This makes them harder to localise (which you want), but still allows for unmarred bass response.

For flexibility, Monitor Audio make their excellent BFX or SFX surrounds, which have tweeters that can be wired in or out of phase, leaving the bass intact.

Axiom Audio's QS8 "quadpoles" are also widely loved, and well worth considering.
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post #28 of 55 Old 02-24-2009, 11:02 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electric_Haggis View Post

To answer your questions backwards...
* Yes, I chose the Infinity ES250 because of this. You can also use them as either dipoles or bipoles in a 5.1 setup, but of course that's a waste.
The Infinity is the only one speaker on the market that works as a dual-monopole, although JBL makes an identical "knockoff" (same parent company)...
http://www.jbl.com/home/products/pro...at=SSS&ser=PER

* In my situation, it works as well as it possibly can. The sound is diffuse, well-spread, and hard to localise, the 360-degree panning is excellent, and they blend brilliantly with the fronts.
Bear in mind that the wide lens on my camera phone tends to make them look smaller and higher up than they really are. Bear in mind also that the couch comes forward into the room when watching, and that the front speakers are huge (1.3 metres tall) with an enormous soundstage. This will always help blend the surrounds into the soundfield.

Ideally, I'd have them on the side walls, slightly closer to the floor, with the rear-facing drivers (acting as back surrounds) bouncing sound off the back wall, but it just can't be done here.
That's what I did in the last place, before eventually getting another set of bipoles for the rear wall, and just running the Infinities as bipoles. That kind of setup is absolutely ideal if you can do it.

Hard to tell from your pics, but if there's any way of having them on the side-walls (they'd be butted right up to the rear wall), running in 7.1, that'd work well.


But in a perfect world, go 7.1 with either bipoles to either side and on the back wall, or if the side walls are very close to you - dipoles to either side with bipoles on the back wall.


The best dipoles are made by Paradigm in their Monitor range. What's unique is that their tweeters run out of phase, but the bass drivers don't. This makes them harder to localise (which you want), but still allows for unmarred bass response.

For flexibility, Monitor Audio make their excellent BFX or SFX surrounds, which have tweeters that can be wired in or out of phase, leaving the bass intact.

Axiom Audio's QS8 "quadpoles" are also widely loved, and well worth considering.

Perfect summary, thanks. So if I understand correctly, ideally you want:

1) Bipole side surrounds, slightly rear of parallel to the sweet spot. Bipole rear surrounds directly behind and spread out properly.

If not, then:

2) Dipole side surrounds, directly parallel to the sweet spot. Bipole rear surrounds.

When seating is too close to rear wall:

3) Dual-monopole surrounds on side wall, (rear of parallel to the sweet spot?). Side surround projects toward the display and rear surround projects toward the rear wall.

And when you have no side walls available (or too close):

4) Dual-monopole surrounds on rear wall. Side surround projects outward, rear surround projects inward.

I'll take my other question here, so I don't clutter your thread.
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post #29 of 55 Old 03-01-2009, 03:07 PM
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Hey, Electric_Haggis, I was so pleased when I found this thread. I'd been using foam sheets sprayed black, held in place with fridge magnets until now, but it was less than satisfactory. Having a W5000 also, means that your roller blind solution has worked well for me. I had a choice of blackout material (very stiff, and I suspected it would suffer from memory problems) or charcoal sun filter which isn't as black as I'd like, but that's what I ended up with. In my pitch dark room, it seems black enough. I wonder if it would be better if I gave the material a light spray with black paint? Maybe it'd turn into a royal mess? Hmmm.
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post #30 of 55 Old 04-01-2009, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spong View Post

I wonder if it would be better if I gave the material a light spray with black paint? Maybe it'd turn into a royal mess? Hmmm.


Only one way to find out!
Use material paint. That should be right.
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Benq W6000 1080p Dlp Projector , Marantz Av7005 Pre Processor , Samson , Infinity Es 250 Bipole Dipole Dual Monopole Surround Speaker
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