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Pre planning a permant outdoor theater

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
We are in the process of buying a new home, we currently rent and just do not have the yard for an outdoor theater. I took my projector to my brother - in - law's home this past summer and we had a blast.

Our new home has a largish back yard and I want to set up an outdoor theater. My indoor theater room faces the backyard and has a window so I hope that I can leave my gear in the house and just point the projector out of the window. I want to purchase a set of speakers ( probably not anything but stereo) and need to figure what I want to do for a screen. Part of me wants to just do the inflatable screen and be done with it but I think I want bigger.

At my b.i.l's house, we used a tan colored painters tarp and it worked well, but the screen was the same size was the same as the inflatable. Im thinking I want to do a 16x9 screen so I thought 4 sheets of plywood... and then some and maybe put hinges at the seams so I can fold it up and store in the garage, I'm not sure I want.. or even can leave it up all the time.

What ideas do you have?
post #2 of 9
Wow Lucky you !! sounds like for one you can sale your old projector to the brother in law and Hummmmm.
And have a upgrade party!!!!!!

You have a great chance to look outside of the box
Look at what others have done and make part of it yours or not.

Fabric for one like trapezia and rear projection may fit in to this back yard theater.
Need a concession stand or a place for audio visual eqiupment hummm.
You can say to the misses Dear looks like we are going to need a much larger shed or a hot tub room then thought.

And if you are realy brave you can say dear didn't you want a hobby room,get her on board.
Then if you and your misses are like me and mine you can have interesting time of it.

Try not to go to fast sit back drink a glass of tea...saver the moment.
Just think you have a chance of a life time.
I have a 12'x20' screen made frome trapezia fabric in my back yard and we think it has a outstanding picture.

Heck You may never know projector number Two may be in your future

Sounds like real fun...
Keep Us in the loop.

post #3 of 9
Mine is semi-permanent, I have 3 sort posts in concrete, when the screen is down all you see are these little guys, and we will be planting bushes this Spring to further hide them.

The screen is a full 16x9 feet, and it can be put up very easily and quickly by me and any one other person. The screen folds up and stores in the garage, takes up very little floor space.

I documented the whole thing step-by-step, click the link in my sig for the Outdoor Theater Build Story to read all of it. Here is the end result:

post #4 of 9
The only real cool opportunity I see here is for you to put the PJ on an auto-motor-mount swivel base. That way, you can push a button, and have the sucker spin 180 degrees (slowly of course) so that it now points out the window and onto the screen in the yard. I'd come over just to watch that alone! I'm easily amused.

Now seriously, the only problem I see is that you will have to shoot the PJ thru a window or else your house will have some serious flying critters in it when you come inside from the outdoor viewing. Not even a storm screen will help. Maybe you can leave all the gear inside except for the PJ and just run wires to speaks and PJ from inside.

As for me, I bring the whole sh'bang outside.
post #5 of 9
post #6 of 9
Originally Posted by commonweal View Post

post #7 of 9
post #8 of 9
post #9 of 9
I want to do what you're describing, but most projectors won't work without a lens that allows a long throw distance between the projector and the screen.

I have three 4 x 8 sheets of plywood mounted on four 4 x 4 posts which are set in concrete, so my screen is permanent. I have 6 outdoor speakers mounted around my back yard and they're connected to a couple of amplifiers which are semi-permanently installed.

The only thing that I have to do to show a movie is take my projector outside and set it up. The projector goes roughly 15 feet away from the screen. The rest is permanently installed.

As an added bonus, the speakers and DVD player work great when I want to listen to CDs during the day.
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