Screen Ideas for an Average Joe - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 28 Old 11-16-2011, 05:31 AM - Thread Starter
Member
 
Barber_91's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 95
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I've been browsing through the screen forum for a few minutes and there is a ton of great information here. I'd like to ask something a little more specific to my situation though so I hope this new post is warranted.

I moved into a new house 6 months ago, and my basement is unfinished, so I don't have any of my gear set up right now. I have a Panasonic projector (can't recall the model - it's big and white and I bought it about 2 yrs ago for about $1400 Canadian).

At my last house I purchased a Da-Lite screen. Nothing fancy...it was like something you'd see in a classroom. I ended up cutting it out of the spring-mechanism at the top and staple-gunning the screen right to my drywall. I then put black moulding around it. I know, it sounds like a total hack job but it actually looked pretty good. Even my friend who sells screens at a local home theatre shop said it turned out well.

When I sold the house the guy who bought it also had a projector, and he wanted me to leave the screen as part of the deal (so it couldn't have been that bad, right?).

Even though my basement isn't yet finished, I plan on setting my projector up downstairs so I can run on the treadmill and have something to watch. So, I guess I'm on the market for a new screen. Here's the thing though. A $150 Da-Lite was just fine for me - I thought it looked pretty good. Even after visiting a friends place who paid $3000 for his screen I honestly didn't see a big difference.

So are there any decent looking, fixed screens that I could get for around $400-$700 bucks? I'm hoping to be somewhere in the 100" - 120" range. I'm not super picky or super high end. I just want something that will look good and be a good value.
Barber_91 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 28 Old 11-16-2011, 09:29 AM
AVS Club Gold
 
AV Science sales 1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I'd recommend you stick with Da Lite. The quality you get from them for the price is hard to beat. Definitely a good 'bang for buck' screen.

Benito

Benito Joaquin, AV Science Sales
Call Me: 1-585-454-1460 x110
Email Me: Benito@AVScience.com

Now taking pre-orders for JVC and Epson projectors!

Contact us for your screen needs!!
AV Science sales 1 is offline  
post #3 of 28 Old 11-18-2011, 07:51 AM
Member
 
saiko's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 24
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I've bought everything else for my ht. stuck on screen choice. I'm thinking of buying a 110" elite sable frame for about 400 or so. Vapex is my second choice but they don't offer 110". Third is carada mainly because they come in at 800 for a thick frame option which is a high priority for me. Comparable da-lites are going for a 1000 plus so that's out for me. I briefly considered favi but they don't have good fixed screen options. I'm going for a cinema white 1.1 gain screen for my new Epson 3010.
Hope this helps in your choice. If you go to projector central website and click on the screens link on the left, will show you a bunch of vendors.
saiko is offline  
post #4 of 28 Old 11-18-2011, 08:28 AM
AVS Special Member
 
pcrx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 2,162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
FWIW,

I just installed a VApex 106" tension electric screen and I am quite impressed. The case is like a tank, has a wireless trigger, detachable cord, sweet mounting bracket system... Plus the PQ is awesome.

For what you get it's a hot deal I think.
pcrx is offline  
post #5 of 28 Old 11-18-2011, 12:18 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Pete's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Posts: 2,608
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Beware of cheap screens from China. They're generally just plain white vinyl cut from the same rolls that supply makers of seat cushions and headliners. You're better off paying a little more and getting a screen that was chemically formulated from the ground up for the purpose of optimum light reflection with a specific projector and in a specific set of room conditions. Otherwise the screen will be the weakest link in your system...the bottleneck for everything upstream of it.
Pete is offline  
post #6 of 28 Old 11-18-2011, 12:50 PM
AVS Special Member
 
KBMAN's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Grass Valley, CA
Posts: 2,820
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Liked: 29
To the OP,
Check out Carada's website...I just bought a custom 115" 2.40 in Brilliant White (1.4 gain on paper) for $739 with free shipping. I'm not sure they still offer the free shipping, but what a nice screen! I got the precision series, and you can go even further with their 'Criterion' series which just means a thicker, bezeled frame. Try calling AVS, they say they are now selling these....

Terrence
"Hey Vasquez, have you ever been mistaken for a man?...."No, have you?" -ALIENS

KBMAN is offline  
post #7 of 28 Old 11-18-2011, 01:44 PM
AVS Club Gold
 
AV Science sales 1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by KBMAN View Post

To the OP,
Check out Carada's website...I just bought a custom 115" 2.40 in Brilliant White (1.4 gain on paper) for $739 with free shipping. I'm not sure they still offer the free shipping, but what a nice screen! I got the precision series, and you can go even further with their 'Criterion' series which just means a thicker, bezeled frame. Try calling AVS, they say they are now selling these....

Yes we are. Carada is a great screen for the price!

Benito Joaquin, AV Science Sales
Call Me: 1-585-454-1460 x110
Email Me: Benito@AVScience.com

Now taking pre-orders for JVC and Epson projectors!

Contact us for your screen needs!!
AV Science sales 1 is offline  
post #8 of 28 Old 11-19-2011, 07:40 PM
Advanced Member
 
domingos38's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 842
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 34
which da lite model
looking for a fixed screen
domingos38 is offline  
post #9 of 28 Old 11-19-2011, 09:20 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Summa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 2,633
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 117
If you're up for a DIY project, I'd strongly recommend Screen Goo. Very easy to work with, inexpensive, and be a much better image than your typical Elite or entry level Da-Lite. If I were still able to use it (I'm in an apartment now), I would be. I swear by it!

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/3/newroom1.png/

www.goosystems.com
Summa is offline  
post #10 of 28 Old 11-20-2011, 05:06 PM
Advanced Member
 
domingos38's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 842
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by Summa View Post

If you're up for a DIY project, I'd strongly recommend Screen Goo. Very easy to work with, inexpensive, and be a much better image than your typical Elite or entry level Da-Lite. If I were still able to use it (I'm in an apartment now), I would be. I swear by it!

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/3/newroom1.png/

www.goosystems.com

wanna build me one?
domingos38 is offline  
post #11 of 28 Old 11-20-2011, 06:30 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Summa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 2,633
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by domingos38 View Post

wanna build me one?

lol, you anywhere near ATL? I love making these, actually....just give me a wall and some goo, and you're good to go!
Summa is offline  
post #12 of 28 Old 11-21-2011, 01:29 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Pete's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Posts: 2,608
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Screen Goo is a low cost solution that slots in between no screen at all and the most entry-level optically coated screens. Just step up to the plate and get a decent screen that will be a keeper over multiple projector purchases. Talk to Benito and he can steer you in the right direction.
Pete is offline  
post #13 of 28 Old 11-21-2011, 02:58 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Summa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 2,633
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 117
Here's an article I had bookmarked that might be helpful to the OP: "Five Screens for Under $500"

As far as screen goo goes, while you're thinking about whether you want to "step up to the plate", as pete advises, spend a few minutes on their home page and you'll see some of the companies and organizations who seem to have a SLIGHTLY more favorable view of the product than he does (e.g. Pixar, Disney, Stanford University, Florida State, etc, etc).

You may also want to check out the DIY forum, cause those folks have even less expensive solutions that might be exactly what you're looking for.
Summa is offline  
post #14 of 28 Old 11-21-2011, 04:47 PM
Member
 
nissand's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 86
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
I would also look into Jamestown screens if you want something that's at a lower relative cost but pre fabricated so you don't have to spend the DIY time. I was going to do a DIY screen but once I factored in the time and materials cost, it meant spending only ~$100 more to get a 129 wide scope screen from Jamestown ($340). All the reviews I've read are positive...I would check them out. My sister has one of their older screens and has been quite pleased.
nissand is offline  
post #15 of 28 Old 11-23-2011, 01:17 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Pete's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Posts: 2,608
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 18
The most important characteristic of a good screen is a flawless uniform surface...no grain, no minute bumps or lumps or specs or ripples or any area that is raised or indented or in any way different from any other area of the screen. The most advanced screen surfaces, such as Da-Lite's JKP Affinity and Stewart's Studiotek 100 are noted for their uniformity and absolute smoothness. You just can't emulate these surfaces with a painted wall. Were you to see a side-by-side comparison of a Goo-painted wall and a better-quality screen material, the difference would be instantly noticeable. With a painted wall, you can detect the reflecting surface through the image. On the other you see only the projected image. It is not subtle. We all learn to live with things that are less than perfect by tuning out the imperfections and concentrating on the larger overall experience. Watching a projected image on a wall instead of a screen is fine as long as you concentrate on what's being projected and don't allow yourself to be distracted by what the image is projected on.
Pete is offline  
post #16 of 28 Old 11-23-2011, 03:53 PM
AVS Special Member
 
pcrx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 2,162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Ill say again - the VApex screen we went with is awesome and I think are about the best deal out there. A reputable dealer too who will stand behind its product. Decided I was not willing to take a greater risk with some ebay screen, even if it were less money up front.

The wireless trigger the Vapex comes with is awesome.
pcrx is offline  
post #17 of 28 Old 11-24-2011, 07:57 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Pete's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Posts: 2,608
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 18
VApex, Elite, Snap AV...all good values for Asian imports. But consider this: since the screen is the interface between your projector and your biology (eyes), an analogy might be speakers where they are the interface between source, amplification and biology (ears). There are lots of cheap Asian speakers to be had...some better than others. Strangely, however, many who would never consider buying cheap speakers happily buy a cheap Asian screen. They are usually front projection neophytes and inveterate do-it-yourselfers who have bought into the-emperor-has-no-clothes notion that a screen is a screen is a screen and anything costing more than a couple hundred dollars is simply unnecessary or, when there's a tight budget, should be considered a low priority...the caboose of the process. I would counter that when assembling an FP theater system, start with the screen. Buy a really good screen, then divvy up the rest of your budget on everything else. Buy a less expensive projector if need be...a less costly av receiver. Projectors and receivers deliver ever more bang-for-the-buck year after year. Upgrade those components and keep your high-performance screen and better-quality speakers.
Pete is offline  
post #18 of 28 Old 11-24-2011, 09:14 AM
AVS Club Gold
 
AV Science sales 1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
You will get 1/2 the folks here agreeing with Pete and the other 1/2 saying the opposite.....to buy a better projector and less expensive screen.

My opinion is right along with Pete. I've seen what an inexpensive screen does to a nice projector. If it were my set up, i'd go with a good screen and consider it an investment since i would not even consider upgrading it for the next 6-8 years....maybe longer.

Most of the rescreens that I work on are for screens that are 10-15 years old. I've worked on many very old drop down screens that were returned to the manufacturer just to have a new skin put on it. Customer gets pretty much a brand new screen back!

Benito

Benito Joaquin, AV Science Sales
Call Me: 1-585-454-1460 x110
Email Me: Benito@AVScience.com

Now taking pre-orders for JVC and Epson projectors!

Contact us for your screen needs!!
AV Science sales 1 is offline  
post #19 of 28 Old 11-24-2011, 10:33 AM
AVS Special Member
 
pcrx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 2,162
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Well,

For an "average joe" I would just say this: The best screen is the best one you can afford. Period.

For those that can shell out 2000 bills for a screen (and allegedly see the difference) thats fine. For the remainder of average joes (the 99%) you have to do what you can.
pcrx is offline  
post #20 of 28 Old 11-24-2011, 01:07 PM
Member
 
Impetus's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 53
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcrx View Post

Well,

For an "average joe" I would just say this: The best screen is the best one you can afford. Period.

For those that can shell out 2000 bills for a screen (and allegedly see the difference) thats fine. For the remainder of average joes (the 99%) you have to do what you can.

There's that 99 percent phrase again. Time to Occupy AVS!
Please no pepper spraying while I sit in the comfort of my computer chair.
Impetus is offline  
post #21 of 28 Old 11-24-2011, 02:38 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Summa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 2,633
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 117
Pete and Benito: The point you guys are missing is that the OP actually gave his needs/desires in his post. People like Pete on here are a dime a dozen, and I don't mean this disrespectfully...but you don't listen. The OP has set parameters and qualifications if you actuallly read what he wrote. He clearly states that he has seen an expensive projector/screen set up, and for him it's not worth the money to go through all of that. So while you two may have no doubt that the absolute best way to go would be to just ignore his misguided ways and to dish out more money than he wants to (i.e. "step up to the plate) on nicer Stewart or some other undoubtedly more expensive screen, the OP does not seem to WANT that. But instead of you guys respecting what he wants, you start up with the "noobs just don't understand" stuff and you start becoming very condescending. He's not looking for "color uniformity", and he doesn't seem all that interested in the origin of the screen in terms of what country it came from. He states that he's not picky and wants something "decent". If you would read what he wrote and respect his preferences, you'd see that. If you want to provide education on why you feel as you do, then great...but some of you have absolutely no recognition of how disrespectful and condescending you can be when you respond to someone who isn't as into this hobby as some of you are.
Summa is offline  
post #22 of 28 Old 11-24-2011, 02:46 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Summa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 2,633
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by pcrx View Post

Ill say again - the VApex screen we went with is awesome and I think are about the best deal out there. A reputable dealer too who will stand behind its product. Decided I was not willing to take a greater risk with some ebay screen, even if it were less money up front.

The wireless trigger the Vapex comes with is awesome.

I just sold my Vapex fixed screen, and I agree with what you said. In fact, the first one I bought from Visual Apex had a corner piece that was not fabricated properly. I notified them of this and they had another one shipped to me immediately.

You can't see the image quality in this pic because of all the light in the room, but the image was plenty good for my purposes and the screen itself looked great with those 3" velvet borders:
Vapex 100"
Summa is offline  
post #23 of 28 Old 11-25-2011, 12:03 AM
AVS Special Member
 
blee0120's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Merillville, IN 46410
Posts: 3,516
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 52
Go with a Visual Apex screen. They are good screens, I had one. Very average screen for someone who doesn't want to spend no more than $500 on a screen. Unless you can get a da lite, SI, Carada, or Stewart screen for the price you want. That will do just fine. An Elite screen might be cheaper if you can find one too
blee0120 is online now  
post #24 of 28 Old 11-25-2011, 08:19 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Pete's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Posts: 2,608
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 8 Post(s)
Liked: 18
Summa,
It's not a question of "respecting what he wants". Benito and I were merely trying to suggest an alternative course of action...a different way of thinking about the equation. When I venture into an area in which I'm not well-versed, I welcome points of view and suggestions from others that have more experience in that field. I don't interpret their advice as "condescending". All we are saying is consider spending a little more on a screen that will be a keeper. The OP said that his budget was $400 to $700. If he can stretch to say $900, he could get a 100" Da-Snap with a screen material that was designed and engineered by experienced film screen chemists for the sole purpose of reflecting the light of a video projector. We're not saying that he should be buying Chateau Lafite Rothchild, just that he should consider Robert Mondavi before buying a Mogen David.
Pete is offline  
post #25 of 28 Old 11-25-2011, 10:13 AM
AVS Special Member
 
Summa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 2,633
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete View Post

Summa,
It's not a question of "respecting what he wants". Benito and I were merely trying to suggest an alternative course of action...a different way of thinking about the equation. When I venture into an area in which I'm not well-versed, I welcome points of view and suggestions from others that have more experience in that field. I don't interpret their advice as "condescending". All we are saying is consider spending a little more on a screen that will be a keeper. The OP said that his budget was $400 to $700. If he can stretch to say $900, he could get a 100" Da-Snap with a screen material that was designed and engineered by experienced film screen chemists for the sole purpose of reflecting the light of a video projector. We're not saying that he should be buying Chateau Lafite Rothchild, just that he should consider Robert Mondavi before buying a Mogen David.



I totally agree with your suggestions, and in fact I'm in the process of getting a nicer screen for myself. But this guy was happy with taking screen material and tacking it up on his wall, so I think his needs are a bit different than ours. But since he hasn't chimed back in, who knows...
Summa is offline  
post #26 of 28 Old 12-01-2011, 03:25 PM
Member
 
palpitatn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 100
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Summa View Post


I totally agree with your suggestions, and in fact I'm in the process of getting a nicer screen for myself. But this guy was happy with taking screen material and tacking it up on his wall, so I think his needs are a bit different than ours. But since he hasn't chimed back in, who knows...

I just put up a 110" matte white Jamestown screen. For the price it's hard to beat. Can I get a better, smoother screen for much more money? Can i get a better quality built frame? Of course. I also agree I would be able to tell the difference. However, at this point in my home theater venture, I felt the more prudent approach was to go with a "good value" screen until all this 3D business gets more solidified. The last thing I wanted was to get a $3000 screen that would be useless for a PJ I want 3-4 years from now.

Just my 2 cents.
palpitatn is offline  
post #27 of 28 Old 12-01-2011, 08:25 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Summa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 2,633
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by palpitatn View Post

I just put up a 110" matte white Jamestown screen. For the price it's hard to beat. Can I get a better, smoother screen for much more money? Can i get a better quality built frame? Of course. I also agree I would be able to tell the difference. However, at this point in my home theater venture, I felt the more prudent approach was to go with a "good value" screen until all this 3D business gets more solidified. The last thing I wanted was to get a $3000 screen that would be useless for a PJ I want 3-4 years from now.

Just my 2 cents.

Exactly. And based on what the OP said, he is in the same boat.
Summa is offline  
post #28 of 28 Old 03-16-2013, 09:36 AM
Senior Member
 
pdoherty972's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 253
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 16
I'll just chime in here too. I just ordered a white 120" 16:9 Jamestown to go with my Sony 50ES. I'm hoping it works out and that I'm satisfied with the overall quality (likely will be, as this is my first dedicated theater room). If I'm not satisfied it seems to me I can sell the Jamestown for a small loss and move up to a better screen if need be. But from the reviews of the Jamestown and the seller's 100% positive feedback of almost 900 reviews on eBay I doubt this will occur.
pdoherty972 is offline  
Reply Screens

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off