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DIY Cheap Projector Screen options

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
From doing some research on the forums I've found a bazillion different options for cheap DIY screens. I'm going to be finished with my basement in roughly a months time, and so I'm looking at what sort of supplies I'll need to pick up to get a HT up and running! The wall for the screen is just under 9' wide, so I'm assuming I'll be going for a 100" screen. I'm willing to go a little smaller if I HAVE to...Also, I have not picked out a projector yet, but if that makes a difference I'll get to work on that as well!

My budget for the screen is ideally below $50, which from the forums seems to still leave me with quite a few options. I'm in Wisconsin, just for purchasing information's sake. From what I've seen, here are some of the options I liked:

1. Paint - gray/neutral. Behr SilverScreen seemed to be debatable in performance and there were numerous others mentioned that would work and be well within my budget. However, that thread is a bit dated, so I'd like to hear some pros and cons of paints people have used recently and what types work well.

2. Laminate, wilsonart, or other rolled screen material - I'm not sure if my local HD carries wilsonart, but I'm sure there are other options they DO sell for this type of setup. I've seen people mentioning stretching some materials to make a screen, but I don't know that I want to mess with that when there are made to size options available. If you do laminate, what color is best? Should it be painted?

3. Hardboard, Boise Cascade, Do-Able - I'm pretty sure my local HD does not carry the latter two, but I'd bet they have the first one! I really liked the pics I saw for the other two, but as they are likely not an option I'll explore my options. For hardboard, it looks like it needs to be painted which is fine. Is it a noticeable improvement over simply painting a flat un-textured wall? Does anyone know of any materials similar to do-able or Boise Cascade that can be found in the Wisconsin area?

If anyone has additional cheap options I'm all ears. These were just the ones that I saw, but I'm certain there hundreds of other options I didn't see...

Thanks for your insight and expertise!

Edit: Another Idea I hadn't mentioned was blackout fabric stapled to a wood frame. Is white the color to go for with the fabric, and how does the picture compare to the other options.

For clarity sake, a list from best to worst picture of these cheap options would be awesome. i.e. 1. Boise, 2. Paint, 3. Blackout, etc...?
Edited by davpolitics - 4/25/13 at 8:00pm
post #2 of 4
You will get much more help if you post this in the DIY sub forum under the Screen forum.
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Well, if I had known that was there...Thank you for pointing that out to me airscapes!
post #4 of 4
You know, if you watch your local craigs list you could possibly find a used 100" screen for under $100. If you wanted to do some DIY and found a large 4:3 or 1:1 screen that are not really popular you make a low ball offer, then cut the fabric out and make a 16:9 frame. I got very lucky and found a 110" Manual pull down Dalite HP 2.8 for $300. This is a superior screen to the current 2.4 gain HP that sells for over $1000.
Just another options to consider..
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