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Join Date: Dec 2006
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Sounds like you should target a 1.5 gain screen with the Benq w6000 to prevent a too narrow of a viewing cone, this should give you enough lumens.
+1 on the Benq w6000, it usually produces more accurate color at the higher lumens than most of the other projector's mentioned (except for business projectors that are rated 3000+ Lumens).
You will get the equivalent of 2000 lumens (technically should be restated as FL, but too lazy to look) from the Benq paired with the 1.5 gain screen even in a mode that is only slight off BEST mode. You can get a similar brightness with the Epson 8350 or Epson 8700 in a decent mode as well, but the BENQ tends to look a bit better I hear at the higher brightness (depending on who you ask). I personally think DLP definitely looks better in brighter scenes than LCD anyways in your situation due to the added sharpness, stick with DLP in this situation. Sharpness can actually make an image in a non-light controlled situation a bit easier to take for some reason (not sure why, but that is my impression).
Even if someone is sensitive to RBE, I've heard ambient light reduces the effect of RBE because of the worsened contrast and black levels, so I doubt RBE would be an issue in this setup even if an occassional viewer does have sensitivity (which is rare anyways).
There are some crossover business / HT projectors that are even far brighter.
Are you completely not allowed to install movable curtains that can be drawn back when not in use?
I would NOT recommend the high power screen because in your situation it sounds like people will be spread out and viewing from multiple angles, high power screen works better with only 3-4 people tightly per row. The viewing cone may be too narrow for the HP.
Since lumens will help then black levels aren't the ultimate goal here, the goal should be getting the projector very bright to compensate for the less than optimal room which will translate to better perceived contrast.
Keep in mind that a 16:9 106" diagonal screen is only 92" wide, or about 98" wide including the pull down frame. Get every inch you can.