So now it's time to consider a screen, and I've narrowed it down to either a fixed, wall mount or manual pull down (a motorized screen is out because I can't really wire it up easily, I think). I have really high ceilings, so a ceiling mount is out. From my investigation of the usual screen manufacturers, none seem to off a manual pulldown that is also tab-tensioned! So my questions are:
1. Would tab tensioning make a significant difference with a manual pulldown or is it just something that is better with motorized screens?
2. Did I miss something or is there a manual pulldown with tab tensioning?
3. Do I even need tab tensioning? I don't want a screen that curls up at the sides which is why I'm even considering tab tensioning.
I think Stewart has a tab-tensioned manual screen. But I think the cost was about the same as a motorized Da-Lite tab-tensioned model.
I'm going with the Da-Lite.
So would I if the costs were the same.
Thanks, Pasqual! Anyone else with pulldown experience? I know you're out there! http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif
Draper makes several tab tensioned manual screens. They appear to use a long detachable crank to lower the screen.
The Premier/Series C in a 52" x 92" retails for $1666 for either the M1300 or the M2500. Cineflex screen material is $1743. Discounts are always available. They do charge extra ($225 for 12") for extra black masking drop.
Their Silhouett/Series C costs $1755 for the same size screen.
For comparison, their Premier Mororized tab tensioned screen retails for $1985 and the Silhouette Series V retails for $2378 for the 52" x 92".
I chose to go with a wall mounted Cineperm from Draper (52" x 92") for well under $500, including shipping. Once I had figured in the extra drop I needed, and with the generous discount offered by my dealer, the motorized screen I initially chose would have cost about $2000 more. A little redecorating and furniture moving made the room for the fixed screen.
Thanks a lot for coming to the rescue, shelly. I definitely don't want to lay out $1600+ for tab tensioning. If go with a pulldown, it's going to be basic non-tensioned. Because I don't have a dedicated room, I'm hesitant to get a fixed screen because then I'd have to cover it up with something. Ahh, decisions, decisions.
Anson, We covered the wall mounted screen with a drape that measures approx. 98" wide, just enough to cover the screen width plus the extra 2" of black marking on each side. It also is about 58" top to bottom, and comes to the top of our wain scote on the wall. the screen itself butts against the top of the wain scote.
My wife made this for us so we were able to choose a great fabric to go with our room. But there should be ample pre made drapes at a reasonable cost.
Thie decorative traverse rod I purchased on the internet was the same that we saw at Penny's and about $75 cheaper. It cost about $135, I think. Penny's wanted something like $250-60 for the rod and installation. Drapery was extra. We did it ourselves, had some problems converting the traverse rod from the default center draw to a one way draaw, and had to hire an independent installer for $25 to finish the installation.
Remember that you will need 2-3 feet of extra rod beyond the width of the screen, as you need to pull the curtain to the side away from the screen, so it has to go onto this extra rod space.
Now the pleated short drape covers the screen and opens with a few pulls in several seconds. When the drape is closed, it also helps the acoustics of our room for listening to music.
I encourage you to save all the $$$ with a fixed screen and use some to purchase curtain and rod. You'll never have problems that could develop wioth roll up screens--stair casing, streaking or wrinkling.
[This message has been edited by shelly (edited April 20, 2000).]
Thanks, again, shelly. Your statement about the benefits to sound quality with the drapes behind the speakers is primarily the reason I was considering a fixed screen, in addition to the cost savings.
Please excuse my ignorance but what is a traverse rod? And in what way is it decorative? Did you use a valance above or directly over the screen's housing to hide both the rod and the housing? If I go this route I think I would stay with a center draw. Sorry for the barrage of questions. I've never installed drapes before!
Anson, We're here to help each other and to share experiences, so no question is too much.
A traverse rod usually has a cord on one side that opens and closes the unit. There are tabs attached to a runner in the rod. The curtain is attached to these using a package or two of curtain hanging hooks. Most department stores have these--even at Orchard Supply Hardware--and they are adjustable in length. Cost for the basic white is usually under $50. They come with brackets (with extenders) that are mounted on wall or ceiling.
The decorative ones (manufacturer Kirsch--do a web search) are usually less institutional looking with wood grain among the many surface designs available. Kirsch (and others) also sell rods with loops, to which you attach the curtain hooks (kind of like a shower curtain.). Because of the length of the rod needed, it will be necessary to use a support bracket in the center as well as the ends. Obviously, this center support prevents any of the loops from passing over. Thus, the cheaper rods with loops can only work if the curtain is in two parts, each opening to the outside.
If you want the curtain to open all to one side or the other (I did not have the wall space for any other way), you must use the traverse rod, whose center brackets attach to the rod waithout interferring with the pull in either direction.
The curtain top should be just below the rod bottom so that the rod is exposed. I think that the curtain covers the plain, regular rod.
A store like Penny's or Sears should be able to help a lot if you or yours can't make/install them including all the proper measurements. Usually you have to go their custom shop near their regular curtain section.
Remember that you're talking about a much smaller drape/curtain than the ordinary. There may be sizes premade that would work well.
The best part is that (assuming you are married), you get to involve your wife in the home theater, thus assuring a high wife acceptance factor.
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