Convince me to go Projector Instead of Plasma. All the hassle aghhhh - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 02:12 PM - Thread Starter
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All I hear is that to go Projector + screen it's just a pain in the a**.

1) Need full darkness
2) Lost of money $1000 (projector), $400 (screen)
3) All the hassle with wiring and hanging up the projector .... aghhhh.


Legitimate fuss or is all of this simply done?

I don;'t have a dedicated room for movies. Room is my living room with 2 windows. Movies I do want in the evening mostly. I sit about 10 feet away from the wall on which now I have my Plasma (50 inch).

Is it worth it? Or am I right that it's not too beneficial for my space with all the extra installation and money spent?


thank you.

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post #2 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 02:31 PM
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I went from a 60 inch 3dLCD Tv to a 2d projector (Epson 8350) and a 120 inch screen. Have not regretted it for a minute. Everything I watch (Movies,sports,news) is vastly more enjoyable on a big screen. My wife and son love it too. The 50 plasma in my bedroom seems laughably small now.
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post #3 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 02:35 PM
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In my opinion I think it is absolutely worth it.

But since you asked for some convincing... consider the following:

Here's what the 50" TV you have looks like vs a 110" projected image:

http://www.displaywars.com/50-inch-16x9-vs-110-inch-16x9


Here it is vs a 130":

http://www.displaywars.com/50-inch-16x9-vs-130-inch-16x9

I didn't know how much wall you have to work with so I just picked a couple of sizes. I hope the above images are worth 1000's of words of convincing argument for you.

If it's your first projector and you aren't too obsessive about things then I think you can get something that YOU are happy with even if others say it's not worth doing for them. You need to know that you will be giving up some things in terms of picture quality if you have lots of ambient light, but for the first projection experience I suspect the WOW of a BIG screen will be enough to make it worth it for you. Watching at night will help A LOT in my experience, (my room is more of a living room too).

There are DIY options for a screen that can save you some money also.

I think it's at least worth looking into.. just do your homework, get familiar with the calculators, reviews and recommendations for various projectors and enjoy the fuss/hassle/process.

Go with a projector!

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post #4 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 02:52 PM - Thread Starter
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I might just go bigger Plasma .... 70-75inch ..... thinking of the whole installation, small space between the wall and seating position ... wiring in the walls, ehh ... some day when I have room for dedicated theater or much bigger room when distance from screen would be at least 12 feet

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post #5 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 02:59 PM
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Provide some more info about your room, seating arrangement, viewing habits, etc... pictures help a lot too.

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post #6 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 03:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walterappleby View Post

Provide some more info about your room, seating arrangement, viewing habits, etc... pictures help a lot too.

My 50in plasma is not even on the wall. It's on a rack by the wall (about 7 inches away).
TV from my eyes is about 8-9 feet.

this means I'd have to hand my TV on the wall and hand screen a bit indented on the ceiling.

hanging projector on ceiling pain in the a** :-)

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post #7 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 03:13 PM
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Hanging the projector really isn't bad at all. Get a good mount, Chief RPA, and it's pretty easy. I would venture to say easier than hanging the TV... you could do it by yourself, which isn't going to be true of a 70" or even a 50" plasma.

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post #8 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 03:36 PM
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From your post, I would say buy a TV and enjoy. One should not need to be convinced.. You won't be happy as you do not sound as if you are willing to make the commitment in time and money to do it correctly. There is a place for both, I have a projector and screen but I have a TV as well.. See photos in my sig file (before and after)
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post #9 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 09:03 PM
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70 inch TV verses a "cheap" Viewsonic PJD5134 SVGA on an off white (original) painted wall.  This is why I went from a 70 inch TV, to a 150 inch image with the Viewsonic to a true 1080p projector.  Took me about 15 minutes to set up the projector.

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post #10 of 38 Old 04-18-2014, 09:30 PM
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In my last post, I should have said the 15 minutes setup time included taking it down from a bookshelf and unhooking the computer/blu-ray/cable from it... then finding my 40 or 50 foot HDMI cable (and a Blu-ray to demo), and putting it on my kitchen island counter for displaying on the family room wall.  My good/better projector downstairs in the basement took about a hour to mount the first time, and would have been faster if I had read the directions rather than a trial and error setup.  Now my setup in the basement is not the "neatest" install, but it is a basement/exercise/play room.

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post #11 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 08:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve1106 View Post







70 inch TV verses a "cheap" Viewsonic PJD5134 SVGA on an off white (original) painted wall.  This is why I went from a 70 inch TV, to a 150 inch image with the Viewsonic to a true 1080p projector.  Took me about 15 minutes to set up the projector.


Haha ... very cool. Very convincing post.

my only concern is ...

1) I can't believe a $350 projector outputs a brighter picture than a 70 inch plasma. Is it true?
2) Your place has to be completely dark ... any light from other room or evening window would ruin the experience
3) Placing projector on a shelf is easier than hanging it I guess, BUT ,... would be much nicer right? I am scared of all the wiring that I'd have to do for power (if I hang the projector to ceiling).
4) Ceiling drilling to hang screen ... last time I had to drill into ceiling, the thing was crumbling with sand or stone ... whatever it was. Crazy mess.

finally ... I can just pay someone to do this all for me (how much would it cost?) ... question is ... will the picture really be bright and sharp using a under $800 projector and under $400 100 or 120inch screen?

also ... space between projector and screen would be about 9 feet. Is that enough?? My viewing would be even closer ... about only 8 feet from eyes to screen

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post #12 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 09:38 AM
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Well my TV is not a plasma, it is a Sharp 70 inch and the image on the TV (in the picture) is dark verses a very bright picture on the projector...but yeah, the View sonic is a light cannon at 2000 plus lumens, so it is brighter.  I have it set on the lowest (eco) mode to reduce light output.

 

In the beginning,  I was planning on jumping up to an 80 or 90 inch Sharp (when the price dropped enough), but then one of the cheapest projectors on the market (in terms of image 800x600) changed my mind.

 

Also,  I could never watch the projector during the morning in that room.  Twenty foot ceiling with six large windows plus six windows in the breakfast area.  All windows have blinds, but the sun in the morning is too much.  Now the afternoon is a different story and the image is watchable but not great unless it is cloudy, so I would never use the projector in that room during the day....

 

but at night even with the lights on, I have used the projector to play Halloween and Christmas DVDs/Blu-rays in the family room.  My "real" movie room is in the "somewhat" light controlled basement...so

 

I was just trying to point out the beauty of a projector vs a TV.  Maybe your solution is a combo  of a mounted TV and a portable 720p (vs the non-hd one I used in the picture) projector and a portable screen for the occasional (wow factor) night of movie or sports viewing.  As to sound, I use a Logitech 2.1 (200 watt THX) computer speaker set with my backup projector.  For example, I have the cheap projector for holidays and for everyday use as a spare projector (when the kids claim the main one) in a spare bedroom in the basement using the wall or a 92 (or 93) Camp Chef screen with the Logitech speakers.  Viewsonic $299 to $349, Camp Chef screen (approx. $180 with leg kit) and Logitech 2.1 THX system ($99) all total about $600.   Just put the wires (HDMI/audio) down for movie night and in the closet the rest of the time.  You could even hook up the projector to your TV's sound bar and unhook when done.

 

As to the seating issue, pixels become the problem at your seating distance.  The better the projector the more the pixels and the smaller they are so the closer you can comfortably sit to a image.  For example, I am typing this on a 32 inch screen/TV and I don't notice the pixels at a normal distance....lean in and I can see the pixels, but  move back or go to a smaller monitor and they disappear.  Blow up an image and the pixels "pop" on a projector so SVGA at 150 inch image is bad at 10 feet, but at 16 to 20 feet... not so much.  In my main room,  I use a 169 image at 1080p at a viewing distance which around 14 to 16 feet and it is great.  I have to get within four to five feet to notice the pixels.

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post #13 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 09:58 AM
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I should have added that the cheaper the projector the less flexibility you have on projector placement due to a lack of a lens shift and limited "focal" range.  Projector central .com is a great resource for the "throw" distance of a projector...but the big boys on this site can give you better advice on a good projector.  With the two I have, I am limited so the projector drives the image size based on my room size.  The Viewsonic will only produce about  a 92 inch image at about 10 feet, so I can't go bigger without having a larger room to move the projector farther back from the screen.

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post #14 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 02:19 PM
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Depends on your own situation, how into movies you are etc.

We watched Captain Philips last night on my projection set up (at about 112" wide although I can go larger when I want). Watching it that large makes it more like an "experience," like you are
in the boat with the action. My plasma couldn't approach this experience.

My sister and her friend watched Gravity on my big screen. Later she saw it on her friend's flat screen and said it was like not even watching the same movie. The experience was comically different
and it was just "watching TV" on the flat screen.

That's what motivates quite a number of us to go with a projector. Once you see images that size in your own home, you are hooked.
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post #15 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 03:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post

Depends on your own situation, how into movies you are etc.

We watched Captain Philips last night on my projection set up (at about 112" wide although I can go larger when I want). Watching it that large makes it more like an "experience," like you are
in the boat with the action. My plasma couldn't approach this experience.

My sister and her friend watched Gravity on my big screen. Later she saw it on her friend's flat screen and said it was like not even watching the same movie. The experience was comically different
and it was just "watching TV" on the flat screen.

That's what motivates quite a number of us to go with a projector. Once you see images that size in your own home, you are hooked.

I can only imagine.
SOund I got ... now it's down to the picture. 50in plasma from 8 feet distance is not bad but you're right, with projector it would be much cooler.

Now, question is, what projector would I try? If I don't hang the thing to the ceiling, I can put it on a coffee table just to the right of my 4 people couch that's centered to the wall ... so I am assuming, angle wouldn't be so bad ...

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post #16 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 04:12 PM
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If you want lots of placement flexibility, you need a projector with lots of zoom and lens shift. That means you'll need an LCD projector from Panasonic or Epson.
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post #17 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 08:17 PM
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A fairly inexpensive option is the Benq W1080ST for $949 (Amazon) with 3D and it is 1080p.  The Benq distance calculator says at 7feet 6inches back you get an image 150 inches.
 

Or, the Benq 770ST for $549 (Amazon) with 3D and it is 720p.  The distance calculator gives you an image of 150 inches at 7 feet 10 inches back. 

 

(I set up a Viewsonic 5533W for a buddy and the 720p looks great, so the cheaper BenQ might be a great starting point.   The Viewsonic 5533 runs $405, but may have dust in the lens issues.  My buddy wanted something cheap for the kids to use and for the occasional family movie and was not concerned about dust....but the image would be too small for your application.)

 

I'm not sure if either BenQ has a lens shift, so you might want to look them up.  Also, a demo of a lens shift can be found with a Bing search.  The lens shift would allow you to put the projector beside your seating area and move the image so it is directly (more or less) in front of the seats.

 

I have the Epson HC2000 (1080p but no lens shift and not a short throw projector) and based on my research the Benq 1070/1080 has a slightly sharper image, but I use mine like a TV (it saw 8 hours of use today alone), so I need one with a $99 dollar replacement lamp plus mine would not work for your application unless you want a smaller image.

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post #18 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 08:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve1106 View Post

A fairly inexpensive option is the Benq W1080ST for $949 (Amazon) with 3D and it is 1080p.  The Benq distance calculator says at 7feet 6inches back you get an image 150 inches.

 
Or, the Benq 770ST for $549 (Amazon) with 3D and it is 720p.  The distance calculator gives you an image of 150 inches at 7 feet 10 inches back. 

(I set up a Viewsonic 5533W for a buddy and the 720p looks great, so the cheaper BenQ might be a great starting point.   The Viewsonic 5533 runs $405, but may have dust in the lens issues.  My buddy wanted something cheap for the kids to use and for the occasional family movie and was not concerned about dust....but the image would be too small for your application.)

I'm not sure if either BenQ has a lens shift, so you might want to look them up.  Also, a demo of a lens shift can be found with a Bing search.  The lens shift would allow you to put the projector beside your seating area and move the image so it is directly (more or less) in front of the seats.

I have the Epson HC2000 (1080p but no lens shift and not a short throw projector) and based on my research the Benq 1070/1080 has a slightly sharper image, but I use mine like a TV (it saw 8 hours of use today alone), so I need one with a $99 dollar replacement lamp plus mine would not work for your application unless you want a smaller image.

Great info ... never heard of that brand of projectors .. looks like a decent product. I do see that every projector works best where there is some room between it and screen. I am thinking, in my new apartment (soon) I may do this but for current one ... just not enough room.

thank you though ... great advice.

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post #19 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 08:50 PM
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I own a Panasonic 65" VT60 plasma which used to seem relatively large sitting back from at about 8 feet.

Recently, I went the front projection route with a JVC RS4810 in a dedicated room with a 108" wide (2:35:1) screen sitting back around 10 feet.

There is just no comparison at all. It's literally like being in a movie theater and being a huge film buff, I just find the VT60 - as great of a display it is - now hard to watch film on in comparison. The experiences are day and night at minimum.

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post #20 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pianist718 View Post

I might just go bigger Plasma .... 70-75inch ..... thinking of the whole installation, small space between the wall and seating position ... wiring in the walls, ehh ... some day when I have room for dedicated theater or much bigger room when distance from screen would be at least 12 feet

Where are you going to find a 70-75" plasma?! The only ones that large were the commercial versions Panasonic used to make (which were extraordinarily expensive) and they no longer make plasma.

You don't have to have wiring in walls either. I have a dedicated room for my FP with a 7.1 audio set-up with no wire in walls yet largely hidden. smile.gif

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post #21 of 38 Old 04-19-2014, 09:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidHir View Post

I own a Panasonic 65" VT60 plasma which used to seem relatively large sitting back from at about 8 feet.

Recently, I went the front projection route with a JVC RS4810 in a dedicated room with a 108" wide (2:35:1) screen sitting back around 10 feet.

There is just no comparison at all. It's literally like being in a movie theater and being a huge film buff, I just find the VT60 - as great of a display it is - now hard to watch film on in comparison. The experiences are day and night at minimum.


DavidHir, I agree and I like your amazing setup.  I loved my 70 inch Sharp TV until I went the projector route and now I find it almost unwatchable.  My wife watches a lot of low definition shows to save on DVR recording space and keeps the "soap opera" effect turned up on the TV to smooth out the image, so high definition shows/movies look "fake".   Plus, the TV just looks small to me now and I will take a projector any day of the week over a TV image.  The Ten Commandments tonight on ABC was amazing on a 169 inch screen/wall verses watching it last year on a "tiny" 70 inch TV.

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post #22 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 06:16 AM
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I was in a similar boat as you a while back. I was convinced that I would be just fine with a 50" LED in my basement. We have a 46" LED upstairs and TV's were just more familiar. Many don't think about a projector until they see what kind of image it is capable of putting out. I tested out a few projectors from Best Buy knowing I had the opportunity to return them if need be. I tested out the Optoma HD131xe, Benq 1070 and Benq 1080ST.

Needless to say, after watching a movie with the projector in the basement and then coming upstairs to watch the news on the 46", the TV now looked microscopic. Even my wife was shocked of how small the picture looked. I have the Benq 1080ST and within the past week finished mounting it with the Chief RPAU mount and hung my DIY 120" screen. I could never go back.

If price is a big factor for you grab a refurb Benq projector as they have the same warranty as new. And if you're up for the task a DIY screen will save you money as well.
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post #23 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 07:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by butie120 View Post

I was in a similar boat as you a while back. I was convinced that I would be just fine with a 50" LED in my basement. We have a 46" LED upstairs and TV's were just more familiar. Many don't think about a projector until they see what kind of image it is capable of putting out. I tested out a few projectors from Best Buy knowing I had the opportunity to return them if need be. I tested out the Optoma HD131xe, Benq 1070 and Benq 1080ST.

Needless to say, after watching a movie with the projector in the basement and then coming upstairs to watch the news on the 46", the TV now looked microscopic. Even my wife was shocked of how small the picture looked. I have the Benq 1080ST and within the past week finished mounting it with the Chief RPAU mount and hung my DIY 120" screen. I could never go back.

If price is a big factor for you grab a refurb Benq projector as they have the same warranty as new. And if you're up for the task a DIY screen will save you money as well.

I know that the projector you got (short throw) it doesn't allow for lens cornering .. meaning, it has to project straight forward and can't really be placed on a side, right?

regarding budget ... I can go much higher than that, BUT ... I don't want to pay double to get extra 10% improvement. you know what I mean?

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post #24 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 07:59 AM - Thread Starter
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Maybe I've been living under rock ... just saw that there are "Wireless" projectors ... meaning, wireless HDMI connectivity ... very cool. That means the source (bluray player) has to be on the network as well or just the receiver as everything goes into a receiver and one cable goes out to my TV right now.???

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post #25 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 08:44 AM
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I too had a large tv 58-inch Plasma (considered large in 2008) and then I went to a home theater store and saw some projectors in action which changed my perception on projectors and affordability. I chose to go with a Home Theater Projector about 5 years ago, and I haven't looked back since. I've had many upgrades over the years projector wise and room wise (first with the Panasonic AE4000u, then Panasonic AE7000u, then Panasonic AE8000u, then Sony HW50, and now the Epson 5030ub), and its damn near perfect now in my opinion and gives an amazing immersive feeling when watching. Using a 125-inch 2.35:1 CIH motorized Elite Cinetension2 screen.

Although my house is fairly decent size (2800 Sq/ft) I didn't have any space for a dedicated theater room so I made my living room into a theater room, not ideal but I'm happy with the results. Put up some blackout shades and curtains over windows, paint the walls a dark color and install a power receptacle on the ceiling and you are good to go.

This is an old video of my setup a couple of years ago but it may help you, a lot has changed since then including: adding theater reclining seats (6), painted walls darker, added acoustic panels and bass traps, changed speakers/subs, changed projectors, etc. I'm completely happy and will never go back to watching a normal tv in my living room as my primary tv, I never even turn on the 58" on my wall. But i've been hit with the upgrade bug.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlw8ZOeQNuk

I can try to upload a recent photo of my setup later tonight, room is completely different now...
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post #26 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 08:51 AM
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Maybe I've been living under rock ... just saw that there are "Wireless" projectors ... meaning, wireless HDMI connectivity ... very cool. That means the source (bluray player) has to be on the network as well or just the receiver as everything goes into a receiver and one cable goes out to my TV right now.???

There's a wireless receiver near the projector that talks to a wireless transmitter near your AV Receiver. And there is a HDMI cable connected (output port that normally goes to tv) from the AV Receiver to the wireless transmitter. All sources that you want to go to the projector need to be connected into the AV Receiver.
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post #27 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 10:48 AM - Thread Starter
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There's a wireless receiver near the projector that talks to a wireless transmitter near your AV Receiver. And there is a HDMI cable connected (output port that normally goes to tv) from the AV Receiver to the wireless transmitter. All sources that you want to go to the projector need to be connected into the AV Receiver.

So in a way one needs a splitter??? From AV receiver one OUT goes into TV and one OUT to Projector .... assuming that AV has only 1 out.

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post #28 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 10:58 AM
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So in a way one needs a splitter??? From AV receiver one OUT goes into TV and one OUT to Projector .... assuming that AV has only 1 out.

Yes. Like this.........http://www.monoprice.com/Product?c_id=101&cp_id=10113&cs_id=1011306&p_id=8204&seq=1&format=2

Ed
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post #29 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 02:10 PM - Thread Starter
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I too had a large tv 58-inch Plasma (considered large in 2008) and then I went to a home theater store and saw some projectors in action which changed my perception on projectors and affordability. I chose to go with a Home Theater Projector about 5 years ago, and I haven't looked back since. I've had many upgrades over the years projector wise and room wise (first with the Panasonic AE4000u, then Panasonic AE7000u, then Panasonic AE8000u, then Sony HW50, and now the Epson 5030ub), and its damn near perfect now in my opinion and gives an amazing immersive feeling when watching. Using a 125-inch 2.35:1 CIH motorized Elite Cinetension2 screen.

Although my house is fairly decent size (2800 Sq/ft) I didn't have any space for a dedicated theater room so I made my living room into a theater room, not ideal but I'm happy with the results. Put up some blackout shades and curtains over windows, paint the walls a dark color and install a power receptacle on the ceiling and you are good to go.

This is an old video of my setup a couple of years ago but it may help you, a lot has changed since then including: adding theater reclining seats (6), painted walls darker, added acoustic panels and bass traps, changed speakers/subs, changed projectors, etc. I'm completely happy and will never go back to watching a normal tv in my living room as my primary tv, I never even turn on the 58" on my wall. But i've been hit with the upgrade bug.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlw8ZOeQNuk

I can try to upload a recent photo of my setup later tonight, room is completely different now...

Cool video. Thank you for the info.

Denon AVR 4311ci Ascend Sierra-1 NrT Ascend HTM-200 Rythmik F12 Panasonic TH50PX60U Samsung BD ES6000 Sony 222ES SACD Monster HTS 5100 MKI Logitech Harmony One Sennheiser HD600 Schiit Modi/Vali
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post #30 of 38 Old 04-21-2014, 02:37 PM
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Cool video. Thank you for the info.

No problem, Its an old video and the room really has taken a different transformation since then, but it does show the quality you can get out of a living room home theater set up. Now the last items on my list is to black out the first 5 feet in front of my screen to improve contrast even more, and i want to install some motorized curtains that will black out the entire wall behind the screen when I bring down the screen.

I say go for it, and you will be happy once installed.
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