I am a neophyte in the process of a basement remodel with a multipurpose room to include my new HT. My video will consist of an XBR700 40 inch TV for routine viewing (kids, news, etc) as well as a front projection screen to drop in front of the TV for movies (DVD mainly but potentially TV, HBO, some sporting events, etc). I have digital cable only at present. My projector is a Sanyo PLV-60. The maximum screen width I will be able to use is 80 inches (box size of around 92-95 inches is the rate limiting factor). The room is somewhat odd shaped with the video image in the northwest corner with seating on the east and south walls at a viewing distance of 14 to 16 feet.
My question is which screen format to choose. If I could go with a 92 x 52 screen I would. Since I must go smaller, should I get an 80 x 45 inch screen or an 80 x 60. I cannot fit a drop down masking system (such as the DaLite Horizon Electrol) secondary to space restraints. Would I be better off to dedicate the screen to 16:9 and accept side bars and a smaller image if I project 4:3 material. Or should I enjoy the size of the 80 x 60 inch when viewing NTSC and then figure out some way to mask the screen when viewing 1.78, 1.85, 2.35 material. The screen will drop from a height of about 80 inches. I could just raise the screen to fit the image, but I do not want the TV behind to be exposed nor do I want to look up too far to view the image