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Old 03-03-2016, 09:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Grey manual pulldown screens?

Why are there no grey manual pulldown projection screens? The only ones I see are from Draper, Instahibit and Loch. Most are not in stock and have limited sizes. What am I missing here?
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Old 03-03-2016, 10:33 AM
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It’s a good question. Most people buying a pull down are also dealing with a less than perfect room and a less than perfect projector and could use the help of a gray screen I would think. It doesn’t seem like it would cost anymore to make a lower gain high dispersive gray as it would a white. Not sure why they are not around especially as projectors keep getting brighter. I would think a .7 gain 110” pull down would sell like hot cakes.


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Old 03-03-2016, 11:20 AM
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Are you looking for something that the vendors you mentioned do not provide? (higher end or lower cost)

Ive installed a few Draper screens. While they were on the less expensive side, the picture seemed decent and the build quality was pretty good.
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Old 03-03-2016, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roccol View Post
Why are there no grey manual pulldown projection screens? The only ones I see are from Draper, Instahibit and Loch. Most are not in stock and have limited sizes. What am I missing here?
Better screen materials ( other than basic matte white ) require ( in general ) tab tensioning, which in turn is only available in electric screens. Manual pull down all seem to be limited to basic screen materials. The exception was the now extinct Da Lite High Power screen. It too was a thicker, less prone to waves etc. material.

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Old 03-04-2016, 09:03 AM
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I previously owned Draper pulldown screens in both 1.0 gain white and 0.8 gain grey. After the projector settings were adjusted to produce more lumens, the image on the grey screen was every bit as bright as on the white screen. Since ambient light remained the same, the ratio of projector image lumens to ambient light lumens improved and provided slightly better black retention.
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Old 03-06-2016, 07:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icrashcars View Post
Are you looking for something that the vendors you mentioned do not provide? (higher end or lower cost)

Ive installed a few Draper screens. While they were on the less expensive side, the picture seemed decent and the build quality was pretty good.
These three are the only companies I have found that make them. The Draper seems like an old product with pricing all over the place.. The others I have no clue. Loch 106" not in stock anywhere. This is for my local VFW hall. I am using a 720p Epson which has plenty of light. While a white screen is serviceable with overhead lights on, gray would be better. A sample of Carl's ALR made a noticible positive difference in this environment. I was planning on building a screen with Carl's ALR, but we really need a screen we can roll up during some events. The screen doesn't have to be perfect.
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Old 03-06-2016, 08:34 AM
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Quote:
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... The Draper seems like an old product with pricing all over the place. ...
Most plain grey as well as most plain white screens from established manufacturers are "old products." There's not a lot of new technology you can throw at these basic designs that will add anything but unnecessary cost. As for "pricing all over the place," this is pretty common for most screens. Some are sold at MSRP and some are heavily discounted. That allows smart shoppers to search for lower-cost vendors and save some money. From my experience, Draper's Contrast Grey XH800E (formerly known as High Contrast Grey) works just fine for an economical simple grey pulldown screen.
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Old 03-06-2016, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Most plain grey as well as most plain white screens from established manufacturers are "old products." There's not a lot of new technology you can throw at these basic designs that will add anything but unnecessary cost. As for "pricing all over the place," this is pretty common for most screens. Some are sold at MSRP and some are heavily discounted. That allows smart shoppers to search for lower-cost vendors and save some money. From my experience, Draper's Contrast Grey XH800E (formerly known as High Contrast Grey) works just fine for an economical simple grey pulldown screen.
Thanks. I think I found one for $155 for 106 inch.
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Old 03-07-2016, 09:05 AM
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Thanks. I think I found one for $155 for 106 inch.
Sounds like a good price. Please let us know how it works for you after you've had a chance to try it out.
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Old 03-16-2016, 02:18 PM
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I currently have a 92" diagonal MaxWhite 1.0 Gain Elite Screen with a Benq W1070. I want to upgrade to a grey screen to improve the black levels. Would the Draper 207104 be a good upgrade? It has a contrast grey surface with .8 Gain.


Other electronic options that I'm considering:

Elite Screens Silver Max 2, Silver Grey 1.0 Gain, 92" Inch Diagonal, 16:9 Aspect Ratio
http://amzn.com/B000HQJR24

Loch High Contrast 92'' diagonal Electric Projector Screen
http://amzn.com/B00DV1IS6I

other suggestions welcome!

Thanks!

Last edited by flipside927; 03-16-2016 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 03-21-2016, 07:36 AM - Thread Starter
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While I'm still evaluating the Draper screen some observations.

viewing angle: very wide. You can watch the screen from across the room from the side with no problem at all.
brightness: Definitely takes a little hit, even with the epson bulb cranked up.
black level: Certainly improved, but this is a weak projector for black levels anyway.
clarity: There definitely seems to be a noticeable film or pattern on this screen. Still evaluating this.
construction: Seems well made although the screen is a little wavy at the bottom. Fairly common for this size and type. It should get a little better over time.
initial verdict: It does what it says i does in a nice package. Vey smooth operation and good construction quality and uniformity. It has its drawbacks, but the benefits are worth it in this environment. Carl's ALR is definitely a better product in this respect, but I needed a pulldown screen.
I'm thinking of painting the case flat black as the light reflection off the mate white case on top can be annoying. I am also going to spray the immediate ceiling tiles above it flat black. This should improve the picture.

If anyone has any tips for making some adjustments for a grey screen let me know. I did'nt change anything outside of going from eco to full power. There are not enough hours on it to do a calibration yet.

Last edited by roccol; 03-21-2016 at 08:34 AM.
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Old 03-21-2016, 08:07 AM
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Nice report. The noticeable film or pattern you describe is probably screen structure. Lower end pull-down screen materials tend to show at least slightly more screen structure than premium pull-down materials. Most materials for fixed screen don't have this problem because they don't require stiffening material as they are designed to stretch a little to produce a flat surface without the wrinkles that pull-down screens tend to develop.

When switching from a white to a grey screen of the same size I didn't make any adjustments on my projector other than increasing brightness. Since I don't have calibration equipment my adjustments were all by eyeball, and I saw no need to change any other settings beyond brightness. Some with calibration equipment have found that some grey screens may slightly skew colors, such as a little more blue push for example. I just didn't see enough difference with my eyes to merit any changes.
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