BenQ w1070 screen dilemma - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 02-15-2014, 09:30 PM - Thread Starter
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I am building a home theater in my basement, and have decided on the BenQ w1070 projector. I have done a lot of research, but I am torn. I am designing the room to have dark everything, including furniture, with indirect corner lighting for a "romantic", dimly lit setting, at the wife's request. I was wondering if I should go with a white or grey screen. I am currently debating the Elite Screens - R84H1 and the Elite Screens - R84WH1. The room has no windows and complete light control is not a problem, but I chose a smaller screen at approximately 1.55x viewing distance because we will be watching a lot more than just movies, and it will be our primary entertainment area and I didn't want to fight eye strain. With all that said, we will not want the light completely off all the time. I am new to the pj scene, and was wondering if I would be better off with the grey screen if we primarily watch with the lights dimmed as opposed to complete darkness. Also because the w1070 is rated at 2000 lumens, and we will have a relatively small screen size of only 84" (diag) I was hoping that bright of a projector would help with the whites on a grey screen. I know we will get better darks with the grey, but don't want whites to be too gray. I know it's a trade off, so just looking for some opinions. I am also open to suggestions on the projector / screen combination for the price range but please keep in mind that I will also use it for gaming, both console and PC. I have been looking for a pj that does Dual Link DVI as an input for true 120 Hz gaming since I got used to it on my new gaming monitor (amazing by the way!), but I know that's out of the question... Thanks in advance from a pj newb!

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post #2 of 6 Old 02-16-2014, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by SensualCarrots View Post
 

I am building a home theater in my basement, and have decided on the BenQ w1070 projector. I have done a lot of research, but I am torn. I am designing the room to have dark everything, including furniture, with indirect corner lighting for a "romantic", dimly lit setting, at the wife's request. I was wondering if I should go with a white or grey screen. I am currently debating the Elite Screens - R84H1 and the Elite Screens - R84WH1. The room has no windows and complete light control is not a problem, but I chose a smaller screen at approximately 1.55x viewing distance because we will be watching a lot more than just movies, and it will be our primary entertainment area and I didn't want to fight eye strain. With all that said, we will not want the light completely off all the time. I am new to the pj scene, and was wondering if I would be better off with the grey screen if we primarily watch with the lights dimmed as opposed to complete darkness. Also because the w1070 is rated at 2000 lumens, and we will have a relatively small screen size of only 84" (diag) I was hoping that bright of a projector would help with the whites on a grey screen. I know we will get better darks with the grey, but don't want whites to be too gray. I know it's a trade off, so just looking for some opinions. I am also open to suggestions on the projector / screen combination for the price range but please keep in mind that I will also use it for gaming, both console and PC. I have been looking for a pj that does Dual Link DVI as an input for true 120 Hz gaming since I got used to it on my new gaming monitor (amazing by the way!), but I know that's out of the question... Thanks in advance from a pj newb!

Yes a grey screen would be a good fit for your situation.  W1070 doesn't have the darkest blacks so for 2d content in a light controlled room and a small screen, the grey will help out without making it too dark.

 

If you want to watch a lot of 3d you might want white though.  Personally I don't care for 3d so I'd rather have a better looking 2d image.

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post #3 of 6 Old 02-16-2014, 03:53 PM
 
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I don't have the 1070 - yet, but here are my thoughts.

I have read about people going as large as 165" screen with this projector. 120" would seem to be fine with a room with even some light. At least that is the impression I am getting from reading the posts. the lumens estimator on projector central also supports this.

An 84" screen seems so small for this projector - would this produce way too bright an image - even with a grey screen? Perhaps an ND filter against a white screen? Even at 9' away that is almost 40 lumens!! Most movie theaters are about 12. Just be careful.

On a related point- while a 1070 and a screen is still cheaper than a 70 or 80" flat screen TV - its not by much. You could get a nice Vizio 70" for about $1300 - not much more than a 1070 and a cheap screen.

To me, anything under 100" makes it hard to justify a projector/screen combo over a TV.

Just some things to consider.
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post #4 of 6 Old 02-17-2014, 11:34 AM
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I more or less agree with the above poster. The screen size is tiny. By any standards, you can get a 80" LCD which has zero ambient light issues, no lamps to replace ever, no moving parts, etc. for just a few grand. At 84" the size is small and that projector isn't designed for home theater use, but living room use. On larger screens in a theater space, it performs very well, but grey screens are meant to be used with critical content in uncontrolled lighting situations, not in rooms with small screens. A grey screen may help a bit, but you likely will need a ND filter, and perhaps different ones which can give you best performance in 2D and 3D modes.

Better, would be a higher classification of projector and a slightly larger screen. The JVC RS46 with a 92" 1.0 gain screen would be where I would tend to recommend based upon your setup.

You should NOT be using indirect lighting in any theater, ever. You can use soft directional lighting, but not indirect, uncontrolled lighting. Why? Well, indirect lighting works by being bounced off a light surface, which then casts uncontrolled lighting in the room which will degrade image quality. A single uncontrolled candled can drop a 1,000:1 contrast ratio to under 50:1 contrast. Don't try to get around it, but consider directional solutions which provide soft light towards the back of the theater exclusively. Directional lights through diffusion filters, for example.

But, at 84" I'd just get a TV, it just makes more sense and has far less compromise.
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post #5 of 6 Old 02-17-2014, 12:47 PM
 
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This is the first time I have heard that the BENQ "is not designed for home theater use." Did I misunderstand you? Why not?

I have a huge basement - about 28' long. Planning on having the BENQ ceiling mounted about 11' away from a motorized 120" 1.1 gain screen.

There are can lights in the ceiling, but these are dimmable - so they will be on, but just enough for us not to be in total darkness.

I am sure a black diamond screen would be perfect for our room -but the cost of that is not in our budget.. when the screen costs 5-6x more $ than the projector - well, you think about screens differently.

Back to my question: why isn't the BENQ a good choice for theater usage?
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post #6 of 6 Old 02-17-2014, 03:10 PM
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Black Diamond screens suck. They are terrible. They sparkle, have horrible viewing angles, and produce extremely non-uniform images. They should never be used in dedicated spaces and should be avoided for all but the worst case scenarios.

The W1070 is designed as a living room projector. It is very bright, has fair, but not great, black levels, and produces a very good, but not great, image. It is designed for home use, and certainly is not a business class projector, but runs in that range between home theater projectors and business class projectors, at a very affordable level which is great for the casual home user.

A serious home user with a dedicated space and proper light treatment should spend more money on a projector which can deliver the black levels, shadow detail, and image contrast which the theater itself can support. You will end up with a punchier, more vibrant image because the contrast, which is the number one impacter of image quality, will be far higher than the living room projectors like the W1070, or Optoma HD131x, or Epson 2030.

The models which are more home theaters specific include the Epson 5030, Panasonic AE8000, JVC RS46, and Sony VPL50ES. All are in the $2,000 to $3,500 range. The JVC at about $2,500 is a great value in my experience because it gives you noticeably better quality than what the other models (AE8000 or 5030) can deliver, and a fair bit more than the living room models offer.


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