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post #1 of 18 Old 11-06-2019, 01:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Is this screen too tall?

I was originally going to max out my screen width with a 140” wide x 58” high 2.40 scope screen, with motorized side masking to take it down to 16:9 (ie CIH).

However my room can (barely) fit a native 16:9 screen at 140” wide (same width) x 78” high screen, with top down masking to bring it down to scope (CIW). This would have the advantage of a wider and taller screen for 16:9 content.

See attached drawing.

First row is 9 feet eyeball to screen (main position) and second row is 14 feet. The screen is 28” from the floor.

Is the vertical field of view as shown too tall (viewer fatigue etc)? I know IMAX and other content is often using tall aspect ratios.. but this is 32 degrees upwards vertical field of view. Too much ?

taller_screen.pdf

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post #2 of 18 Old 11-06-2019, 01:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post
I was originally going to max out my screen width with a 140” wide x 58” high 2.40 scope screen, with motorized side masking to take it down to 16:9 (ie CIH).

However my room can (barely) fit a native 16:9 screen at 140” wide (same width) x 78” high screen, with top down masking to bring it down to scope (CIW). This would have the advantage of a wider and taller screen for 16:9 content.

See attached drawing.

First row is 9 feet eyeball to screen (main position) and second row is 14 feet. The screen is 28” from the floor.

Is the vertical field of view as shown too tall (viewer fatigue etc)? I know IMAX and other content is often using tall aspect ratios.. but this is 32 degrees upwards vertical field of view. Too much ?

Attachment 2637266
Generally speaking most people setup their screen for a ratio 2-3x screen height to seating ratio (IMAX would be around 1.5x). So you're seating will definitely be a factor here. Our vision is wider than it is tall, so you're correct in wanting to avoid fatigue by overwhelming your vertical immersion. Unless that something you like, some people do prefer the front rows (but not many). Even your scope screen at 58"would be closer to an IMAX level of immersion (about 1.8x the seating to screen height ratio). I would consider dropping to a ~138" scope screen with a 54" height, which would put you at 2x seating to screen height in your front row. Your 16:9 screen would be uncomfortably close for most at 1.4x seating to screen height. That's front row territory. Also,the angle in your PDF looks like it would have the midpoint high enough that you would be looking up uncomfortably.

The bigger factor for me is how do you want to view content? The 2 rectangles in the attached picture have the same height. That height should represent your desired maximum vertical field of view. Notice how the 2 differ. The 1.78:1 screen never changes your horizontal immersion (thus constant width), however wider and wider material fills less and less of your vertical field of view. So counter to what the filmmakers are intending wider material is LESS immersive, not more. The 2.35:1 screen (which is basically within inches of 2.40:1) is the opposite. At all times you are filling your desired vertical immersion, wider material simply fills more and more or your field of view based on its aspect ratio. A scope film is 75% larger on the scope screen. A 16:9 program has the same size on both.

Unless you really treasure that 1% of shifting aspect ratio cropped IMAX out there, a scope screen is simply a much better option for viewing film.
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post #3 of 18 Old 11-07-2019, 07:26 AM
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For me it depends on what row of seating will be your primary seating. In the picture you posted I would feel more comfortable in your second row.

It is imposable at home with two widely spaced reclining seats and a screen much smaller than a commercial theater would have to get close to proper immersion for both rows. In a real theater row 20 & 21 will have almost the same immersion say in the middle of the theater. At home some compromises have to be made. Do you make the first row proper and then the second row is under immersive (most times under immersive is not a problem for overflow) do you make the second row perfect and the front row is over immersive (problem with eye strain), or do you do CIH+IMAX as you are suggesting. CIH+IMAX in a 2 row theater has new compromises to ponder as to get the sight lines correct and not see heads blocking the image the riser height needs to be higher along with the starting point for the screen. the front row then needs to be fully reclined to get the upward angle needed and the back row really doesn’t want to recline. For that reason when doing CIH+IMAX I would suggest the second row be more conventional theater seats and in not reclining they can be pushed up closer to the screen maintaining closer and better immersion between the rows and the second row then becomes the overflow seating or seating for those not accustomed to full on immersion. The overall IMAX screen can then be a little lower also.

Some advantages of an IMAX screen are that no one says the scope image height has to be in the center of the IMAX screen. When watching in just the front row or back row even, you can use image shift to raise or lower your CIH material. Another advantage for me and a few others is in viewing old well mastered Academy AR movies they can be shown some taller to get a wider image closer to perhaps an original theater presentation of the 30’s something like CIA constant image area. TV and Streaming TV is another area of controversy if you will be watching shows like Game of Thrones some feel they benefit from more immersion some disagree. It is the same for sports. I have no problem watching NBA or NFL more immersive than CIH allows others disagree. Then there are fully immersive games people play. Something like a flight simulator or roller coaster sim. can look amazing as IMAX. These are all personal choices to be worked out.

Many times it is suggested to just start with a wall painted flat white and experiment for a few months to see what you like. I liked this approach so well I ended up doing a neutral gray stealth DIY painted screen wall foregoing masking. For me the versatility of variable immersion outweighed the need for masking. What pointed this out to me is the AR changing IMAX movies like Dunkirk. That movie switches between IMAX and scope dozens of times and is imposable to mask both at once. The director obviously understood the viewers would be seeing black bars and was ok with that and in my showing the movie many times to many people when asked after the movie no one even was aware the AR was changing let alone thought about black bars. If the movie is good and engaging we watch the movie not what is outside the movie and being fully immersive makes what is outside the image even less noticeable.

For me my perfect seating distance is 2X screen height for CIH and then that equates to 1.5 SH for IMAX. Everyone is a little different, but most people with time in a HT like more immersion not less than their starting point.

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post #4 of 18 Old 11-07-2019, 11:30 AM
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In addition to the issues of viewing fatigue, something not addressed in the original post is what projector you have and whether it's even bright enough to support a screen size that large. The bigger you make the picture, the more brightness you sacrifice and the worse your contrast.

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post #5 of 18 Old 11-07-2019, 01:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post
In addition to the issues of viewing fatigue, something not addressed in the original post is what projector you have and whether it's even bright enough to support a screen size that large. The bigger you make the picture, the more brightness you sacrifice and the worse your contrast.
This is so often overlooked. And with 4K and HDR it is even more important.

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post #6 of 18 Old 11-07-2019, 02:17 PM
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There are many unknowns the OP hasn’t told us at this point. Projector lumens is one but equally important is room lighting conditions and colors etc.

Judging by his professionally produced room cross sections he is getting some help in the design process.

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post #7 of 18 Old 11-10-2019, 04:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bud16415 View Post
There are many unknowns the OP hasn’t told us at this point. Projector lumens is one but equally important is room lighting conditions and colors etc.



Judging by his professionally produced room cross sections he is getting some help in the design process.


Thanks everyone for the great input. I’m planning to use a JVC rs4500 projector which is 3000 lumens , or 2500 lumens calibrated (in high laser). It’s a totally light controlled room in the basement.

It is tough with 2 rows - as drawn the seats are as close together as possible.

Unfortunately the front section of the theater is sunken down in concrete , so 9 feet is as far back as row 1 gets (which will probably be main viewing position).

I think a scope screen will be immersive enough at 140” wide by 58” high (1.86 X SH). 16:9 content (TV, Xbox) will take a little hit with the side masking, but it still should be immersive enough.
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post #8 of 18 Old 11-11-2019, 07:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post

I think a scope screen will be immersive enough at 140” wide by 58” high (1.86 X SH). 16:9 content (TV, Xbox) will take a little hit with the side masking, but it still should be immersive enough.
1.86 X SH should be very immersive for scope and flat as well. As I mentioned I like 2.0 X SH and I find some of my guests like me to back down on that some. Being right up there on the front row will help with the second row also.

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post #9 of 18 Old 11-11-2019, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post
I was originally going to max out my screen width with a 140” wide x 58” high 2.40 scope screen, with motorized side masking to take it down to 16:9 (ie CIH).

However my room can (barely) fit a native 16:9 screen at 140” wide (same width) x 78” high screen, with top down masking to bring it down to scope (CIW). This would have the advantage of a wider and taller screen for 16:9 content.

Is the vertical field of view as shown too tall (viewer fatigue etc)? I know IMAX and other content is often using tall aspect ratios.. but this is 32 degrees upwards vertical field of view. Too much ?
IMHO you are on the right track with the scope screen. CIH is much more to my liking than CIW. Lived with both for years.

Re the 20 vs. 30 deg elevation, I answered that for myself with a simple experiment.
1) Put a mark on the front wall at eye level -- dead ahead.
2) Sit in the MLP. Look at the mark. Relax so that head is comfortable.
3) Without moving head, move eyes up to the point where clear line of sight stops. For me, my glasses frame comes into blurry view first, followed by eyebrows. Mark that spot.

The top of the screen needs to stay in the clear area. For me that was 20 deg elevation. Without glasses it might be 30 deg, but I do not really like having to roll my eyes that far up on a regular basis. Do you or front row friends have glasses?

Re the side masking. You might discover you do not need it. I don't. The PJ has very little scatter, and the room is dark. The side areas just seem to disappear with 16:9 content. Anyway, worth a try before investing in motorized masking.

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post #10 of 18 Old 11-12-2019, 04:09 PM
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Front row ears are at the midpoint of the room. The reclining function of the second row overlaps the front row. The screen mounting height appears to be
too high when not reclined. Would 9' of viewing distance to a 140" wide screen, allow the front row to take in the entire screen and not have your eyes jumping
all over the screen?

But I see some really interesting ideas there, but have to wonder if the talent is coming from an interior designer, and not a home theater designer. I expect that
room won't be all that ergonomically comfortable, but it sure will look amazing.

(I expect the front row will be reclined when in use, and it is deigned to be used in that manner.)

I overall really like the space, but I would tweak it a small amount. I would scrub the gear up front, drop the screen a wee bit, with the "stage" lower, then host the
second row on a low island style platform, on the riser. I would go scope, but rein in the screen size. I also would push the front row back a few inches, as well as the
second row and maybe not use recliners for the second row. I also would extend the riser steps and make them longer.

I do wonder if that foundation could be cut back a wee bit, to push the front row back a wee bit more?
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post #11 of 18 Old 11-13-2019, 10:30 AM
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Tedd is hitting all the key points. Center of the room is a null, acoustically, so your prime seats will suffer. You might be better off consuming part of the rear of the room to make an equipment closet with a solid wall to change the dimensions. Use seats designed to be placed close to a wall so you can push the front row all the way up against that ledge.

Where is the entry point to the room?

Go to a commercial theater in your area in the off hours and adjust your seating position to approximate your various prospective viewing angles. It looks even closer at home (because it is).
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post #12 of 18 Old 11-13-2019, 07:44 PM
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I played with that design a wee bit. Just because I like it so much...

(The second one would involve some concrete work, to recess the front row. A bit extreme...)

It might benefit with a deeper BigmouthinDC'sBigA$$ step, and a low island style riser for the second row.
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post #13 of 18 Old 11-13-2019, 10:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedd View Post
Front row ears are at the midpoint of the room. The reclining function of the second row overlaps the front row. The screen mounting height appears to be

too high when not reclined. Would 9' of viewing distance to a 140" wide screen, allow the front row to take in the entire screen and not have your eyes jumping

all over the screen?



But I see some really interesting ideas there, but have to wonder if the talent is coming from an interior designer, and not a home theater designer. I expect that

room won't be all that ergonomically comfortable, but it sure will look amazing.



(I expect the front row will be reclined when in use, and it is deigned to be used in that manner.)



I overall really like the space, but I would tweak it a small amount. I would scrub the gear up front, drop the screen a wee bit, with the "stage" lower, then host the

second row on a low island style platform, on the riser. I would go scope, but rein in the screen size. I also would push the front row back a few inches, as well as the

second row and maybe not use recliners for the second row. I also would extend the riser steps and make them longer.



I do wonder if that foundation could be cut back a wee bit, to push the front row back a wee bit more?


OP here. Thanks for these interesting suggestions. Unfortunately, the dropped front part of the room cannot be changed. We had to dig down that part of the basement after the foundation and teleposts were poured (poor planning!), and for structural reasons, the front “pit” had to stay back a certain distance from these supports. It was pushed back as far as possible.

I wasn’t aware of the acoustic hit (?null) at the middle of the room (50% of length). That said, the front speaker to back wall distance is 20 feet, and the MLP (front row) is 9 feet. Since it is not exactly 10 feet, and given the fact the whole room will be acoustically treated , do you think this is still an issue ?

The horizontal angle of view from row 1 is 62 degrees (which is maximum SMTE recommended angle) , and row 2 is 45 degrees. I figured this is okay, a good compromise for both rows.

The chairs don’t overlap - I just want them as close as possible to optimize audio, and video field of view angles in both rows.
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post #14 of 18 Old 11-14-2019, 04:05 AM
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Sometimes you have to just live and work with what you have, and the seating at 9' is maybe as good as it can get.

The issue with the seating at the mid mark is the audio is never smooth. Just too many nulls and peaks there, so it was worth a thought to see if there
was any flex with the lower section of the room. I've actually been in one local home theater where the front was dropped. It was rather impressive.

I figured the foundation was benched, with the front of the room being designed as it was.

I gather you won't be using an acoustically transparent screen? How wide is the room?

It's kind of all that more impressive with the benching efforts. I kind of figured it was a bit on the tight side, which makes a good design all that tougher to pull off.
I did see a lot of spatial tricks being put to work, and felt the overall room was rather impressive.
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I do think the screen is a little bit too large. That viewing angle is wider then I would like, as it would be hard to take in the entire screen and not have one's eyes jumping around the screen.
That might be conducive to eye strain. And the screen seems to be mounted a little on the high side, so the front row elevated head angle might exceed seven degrees with the seat in the upright
position. That might lead to a stiff neck. (I expect the idea is for the front row to watch while reclined, but now one's ears are on the room's center point.)

I just wonder if relaxing the screen size a bit, with that low island riser for the backrow, won't give proper sightlines, and increases front row ergonomic comfort?
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post #16 of 18 Old 11-14-2019, 09:35 AM
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FWIW I sit just over 9' from a 130" 2.35:1 screen have had many compliments on the sizing and immersion. That would be 120x51". A 138" 2.35:1 screen would be about as big as I'd go (127x54").
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tedd View Post
I do think the screen is a little bit too large. That viewing angle is wider then I would like, as it would be hard to take in the entire screen and not have one's eyes jumping around the screen.
That might be conducive to eye strain. And the screen seems to be mounted a little on the high side, so the front row elevated head angle might exceed seven degrees with the seat in the upright
position. That might lead to a stiff neck. (I expect the idea is for the front row to watch while reclined, but now one's ears are on the room's center point.)

I just wonder if relaxing the screen size a bit, with that low island riser for the backrow, won't give proper sightlines, and increases front row ergonomic comfort?
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeahrens View Post
FWIW I sit just over 9' from a 130" 2.35:1 screen have had many compliments on the sizing and immersion. That would be 120x51". A 138" 2.35:1 screen would be about as big as I'd go (127x54").
As we have discussed elsewhere in this forum, it is very different for 16x9 and 2.35:1 screens. Typical scope cinematography accounts for your eyes moving and may change focus to force your eyes to move. 16x9 (TV) is mostly meant to be seen all at once. 1.85 (films) are framed closer to TV than scope.

I have a 52 inch high scope screen and I can sit at 9 feet comfortably, but I usually sit a little further back (12-13 feet). I would NOT be able to sit at 9 feet with a similar width 16x9 screen. Given a projector made to support CIH, I'd lean to the CIH implementation and take advantage of the capability.


Blake, I take it you have to make the screen decision before you get the projector to test?
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post #18 of 18 Old 11-15-2019, 12:16 PM
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If you have any interest in watching 3D, brightness needs to be considered. It's much dimmer than 2D.
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