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post #1 of 8 Old 09-20-2019, 01:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Unhappy Sigh... Short throw projector or work around?

Just moved (again). Before now my wife and I have either rented or purchased homes I felt that we could re-market in 3 years or so without taking a bath on brokerage fees or depreciation. Not ideal, but one does what one has to when confronted with unavoidable geographic uncertainty. This time it seems we are staying put for the foreseeable future, which allowed for a budget increase and, by extension, a more than comfortable increase in square footage by comparison to previous homes. Solid build quality. Outfitted with in-wall speakers in kitchen, 1st floor living, and 2nd floor master. The finished basement (where I intend for this projector to go), is actually the only level of the house that lacks in-wall speakers in one or more spaces, but that is not exactly a bad problem to have.

As you can see I still have a lot of packing/unpacking work ahead of me, so perhaps that is where my focus should be. However, for any project that requires or may require me to pull wire, I like to get it done ASAP after moving in before space starts to fill up, as it invariably will, and most likely make my job harder. Location pictured is in finished basement and is natural spot for the projector I want. It has great light shielding. Wet bar and bathroom is just behind where I was standing when I snapped this photo, and you can't see it, there is a space on right that will work great as a media cabinet. There is one glaring problem, however, and the photograph really does my job for me in that regard. Again, I was standing about 20 feet away from the wall, so plenty of space, or at least there is until that horizontal beam is taken into account. At first I assumed that was an HVAC duct, but after exploring the crawl space a little bit, in fact it is not. It is also not a solid support beam. Instead it looks to be a hollow boxed off region, but it is stuffed with insulation. A cell phone is no substitute for a flash light, so my viewing was not ideal and I need to crawl back in there again and investigate more, but pending a more thorough investigation of the matter, I will work with what little I have observed (and it may not matter anyway). The drop down from the ceiling starts about 8 foot back from the wall, and regardless of what purpose it serves, I have a very hard time envisioning how it would not get in the way of any attempt to place a projector behind it, mount or no mount. Assuming it is in fact hollowed, one might be able to actually cut a recess out and put a projector in there, which would be nice and tidy, but you would still only have about 8 feet of throw distance. As for the projector, I am a fan of the BenQ HT3550 because it appears, for my part, to be a very solid choice viewed from a cost/value perspective, but assuming a throw distance of 8 feet (or less), I wouldn't be making much of a dent in the real estate afforded by that back wall with a BenQ HT3550. Thoughts appreciated re how best to deal with the problem presented by the drop down from the ceiling, whether that be working around it, selecting different equipment, or both. Throw distance on the BenQ HT2150ST would probably work in front of drop down, and the lower input lag is nice, but giving up the higher resolution (which I would prefer, I think?).
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post #2 of 8 Old 09-20-2019, 08:33 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saneace View Post
Just moved (again). Before now my wife and I have either rented or purchased homes I felt that we could re-market in 3 years or so without taking a bath on brokerage fees or depreciation. Not ideal, but one does what one has to when confronted with unavoidable geographic uncertainty. This time it seems we are staying put for the foreseeable future, which allowed for a budget increase and, by extension, a more than comfortable increase in square footage by comparison to previous homes. Solid build quality. Outfitted with in-wall speakers in kitchen, 1st floor living, and 2nd floor master. The finished basement (where I intend for this projector to go), is actually the only level of the house that lacks in-wall speakers in one or more spaces, but that is not exactly a bad problem to have.

As you can see I still have a lot of packing/unpacking work ahead of me, so perhaps that is where my focus should be. However, for any project that requires or may require me to pull wire, I like to get it done ASAP after moving in before space starts to fill up, as it invariably will, and most likely make my job harder. Location pictured is in finished basement and is natural spot for the projector I want. It has great light shielding. Wet bar and bathroom is just behind where I was standing when I snapped this photo, and you can't see it, there is a space on right that will work great as a media cabinet. There is one glaring problem, however, and the photograph really does my job for me in that regard. Again, I was standing about 20 feet away from the wall, so plenty of space, or at least there is until that horizontal beam is taken into account. At first I assumed that was an HVAC duct, but after exploring the crawl space a little bit, in fact it is not. It is also not a solid support beam. Instead it looks to be a hollow boxed off region, but it is stuffed with insulation. A cell phone is no substitute for a flash light, so my viewing was not ideal and I need to crawl back in there again and investigate more, but pending a more thorough investigation of the matter, I will work with what little I have observed (and it may not matter anyway). The drop down from the ceiling starts about 8 foot back from the wall, and regardless of what purpose it serves, I have a very hard time envisioning how it would not get in the way of any attempt to place a projector behind it, mount or no mount. Assuming it is in fact hollowed, one might be able to actually cut a recess out and put a projector in there, which would be nice and tidy, but you would still only have about 8 feet of throw distance. As for the projector, I am a fan of the BenQ HT3550 because it appears, for my part, to be a very solid choice viewed from a cost/value perspective, but assuming a throw distance of 8 feet (or less), I wouldn't be making much of a dent in the real estate afforded by that back wall with a BenQ HT3550. Thoughts appreciated re how best to deal with the problem presented by the drop down from the ceiling, whether that be working around it, selecting different equipment, or both. Throw distance on the BenQ HT2150ST would probably work in front of drop down, and the lower input lag is nice, but giving up the higher resolution (which I would prefer, I think?).
Lets try this again in a format that does not amount to a novel and a better photo. Just moved into the new place. Will have a projector-based home theater one way or another and will do it in the location pictured, but if it has to be placed in front of the boxed off drop down from ceiling, throw distance would be limited to 8 feet (or less depending on if its feasible to do a cut-out for it). Meanwhile, the drop down from ceiling is "14 inches, so placing a projector behind that ceiling obstacle seems like folly, but then again, I have not had the space for a projector setup prior to now, so I have to own some ignorance there as to what is feasible. Regardless of what route I might chose to go, I do not see a way to solve this equation in a way that allows me to have 4K at a reasonable price point. Rather, only viable option I see (if in front of ceiling drop) is a short throw 1080P, but I would very much like to be corrected if I am missing a workaround. Thanks in advance!

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post #3 of 8 Old 09-20-2019, 08:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saneace View Post
Lets try this again in a format that does not amount to a novel and a better photo. Just moved into the new place. Will have a projector-based home theater one way or another and will do it in the location pictured, but if it has to be placed in front of the boxed off drop down from ceiling, throw distance would be limited to 8 feet (or less depending on if its feasible to do a cut-out for it). Meanwhile, the drop down from ceiling is "14 inches, so placing a projector behind that ceiling obstacle seems like folly, but then again, I have not had the space for a projector setup prior to now, so I have to own some ignorance there as to what is feasible. Regardless of what route I might chose to go, I do not see a way to solve this equation in a way that allows me to have 4K at a reasonable price point. Rather, only viable option I see (if in front of ceiling drop) is a short throw 1080P, but I would very much like to be corrected if I am missing a workaround. Thanks in advance!

Forgot to include the photo. This should afford better context.
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post #4 of 8 Old 09-21-2019, 11:51 AM
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Thought I'd pop in here with a idea to consider.


But first...let's both examine the known facts as well as prioritize.
  1. You DO want 4K resolution.....don't compromise on that!
  2. Planning as well as incentive are crucial. You have the incentive to go Big 4K, so you must plan to make that possible.
  3. Knowing "exactly" what is and isn't possible is required to make informed choices. and not rule out possible solutions that do exist.
  4. It would be absolutely worth the needed Drywall removal / repair to excise a 24" wide x Plenum Depth (front edge to back edge) open to reconnoiter.
  5. If you can reclaim at least 2' more Throw. you can manage a 120" diagonal 16:9 image on the proposed Screen Wall
  6. The Plenum is there for a reason...you can't see it but something is there.........that structure wasn't built for looks...that much is obvious.*
  7. If the bottom of the structure is just a 2x4 Framed "Ladder" inter-spaced with vertical supports and stuffed with Insulation....well Wow!**
  8. Plenum is built as just described, but Plumbing and / or HVAC exists up higher, and you can use at least 9" x 20" x 28" Depth...again Wow!
  9. The routing of Electrical and Video Cabling into the Plenum's Center will be far easier if the area just above the Plenum Bottom framing is free & clear.
  10. If either case exists, a 20" wide "U" Channel or Tunnel could be framed in with the PJ mounted at the rear yet flush with the bottom of the Plenum.
  11. The HT3550 has 3" Image offset at 10' so even if the inverted PJ's center of the lens is 1" above the bottom of the Plenum....it works.

I'm almost certain the Plenum is not a structural element....just a enclosure than might have had to be constructed larger overall than was needed to hide something in a particular area. But as stated above....you must reconnoiter so as to see if you can make something special happen. And you do than to make something special happen... 1080p ain't it.
Soooooo.................,


What about something like this?




*/ **(...that would be crazy odd, but Hey, some Builders / Framers are exactly that....)
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post #5 of 8 Old 09-21-2019, 05:58 PM
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Do you have a floorplan with measurements and all obstacles located on it? And how much height is under the soffits?
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post #6 of 8 Old 09-22-2019, 12:12 AM
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Quote:
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Do you have a floorplan with measurements and all obstacles located on it? And how much height is under the soffits?
The Photos and general Room description do a fine job of providing those answers.

The Ceiling is obviously a minimum of 8"(96") and the Fur Down 14" so there is 82" from the underneath of the Fur Down to the Floor. Or more if Ceiling Height is higher.. (...doubtful....)

Visually there are no obstacles (Floor or Ceiling) between any given Throw location and the Screen Wall, save the Fur Down.

The most distressing thing I see are the silly Cable / 110 outlets up on the Wall, that make doing a Painted ALR Screen more of a chore. But not an impossibility. A bright UST 4K Laser PJ can shoot an incredible 120" diagonal image on just a Matte White Wall surface.

If a lengthy 24"L x 9"H x 20"W recess at the Center of the Fur Down can be accommodated, I see that as the only logical solution that would allow a reasonably close Throw (10') for the affordable HD3550 that would allow for a 120 diagonal 16:9 (...that's about as big a one there can be on that wall anyway...)



And lastly the right side Corner Build-down on the Screen Wall that must be covering up something....that too forces any screen to reside below it's lower extremity.

Beyond that, a Laser 4K USD comes in at $3200.00+ for the Optoma P1....which might still be an acceptable cost if it can exclude the necessary restructuring of the Plenum / Fir Down. The lack of such a need, as well as the omission of the need for a Screen might well offset the additional expense of a better Projector more suitable for the Space involved.

It (...the P1...) does require a very low Table Mount though.....

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post #7 of 8 Old 09-22-2019, 01:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by MississippiMan View Post
The Photos and general Room description do a fine job of providing those answers.

The Ceiling is obviously a minimum of 8"(96") and the Fur Down 14" so there is 82" from the underneath of the Fur Down to the Floor. Or more if Ceiling Height is higher.. (...doubtful....)

Visually there are no obstacles (Floor or Ceiling) between any given Throw location and the Screen Wall, save the Fur Down.

The most distressing thing I see are the silly Cable / 110 outlets up on the Wall, that make doing a Painted ALR Screen more of a chore. But not an impossibility. A bright UST 4K Laser PJ can shoot an incredible 120" diagonal image on just a Matte White Wall surface.

If a lengthy 24"L x 9"H x 20"W recess at the Center of the Fur Down can be accommodated, I see that as the only logical solution that would allow a reasonably close Throw (10') for the affordable HD3550 that would allow for a 120 diagonal 16:9 (...that's about as big a one there can be on that wall anyway...)



And lastly the right side Corner Build-down on the Screen Wall that must be covering up something....that too forces any screen to reside below it's lower extremity.

Beyond that, a Laser 4K USD comes in at $3200.00+ for the Optoma P1....which might still be an acceptable cost if it can exclude the necessary restructuring of the Plenum / Fir Down. The lack of such a need, as well as the omission of the need for a Screen might well offset the additional expense of a better Projector more suitable for the Space involved.

It (...the P1...) does require a very low Table Mount though.....
Great stuff guys. Wheels already turning and hearing what your saying. MissMan, your bulldogs just drubbed my Wildcats, but so it goes, GG WP lol. I could share much more detail but would rather do that in a PM setting, which I know sounds petulant, but because of the line of work I am in, and more importantly that my wife is in, so I don't have the luxury of not being somewhat guarded about what goes on the open web. Not tin foil hat over here, just can't have it free floating for google crawlers. Can PM more thorough explanation and measurements, but initial impression is I like what you are thinking here, and I hadn't considered that possibility. To be sure, there are assumptions that need to be reduced to certainty before anything done, but if feasible, I failed entirely to see what you proposed as a possibility. PM to let me know that best way to send you the plans (protocol entirely up to you) and I can provide much more precise measurement/detail. If it were only me to consider, then I would come straight out with it, but there is the wife to think, and so it goes. Trust me as to foregoing: You will understand where I am coming from when I can explain it in a different setting.
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post #8 of 8 Old 09-22-2019, 03:03 AM
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What's given is simplistic enough to say a projector is an option.

But if one wants a little more from their space in terms of overall looks and audio performance, then certainly it is indeed worthwhile to take some measurements and explore
what's possible to deal with the off center nature of the space, and host the electrical panel hand access hatch in a way that hides them.

For the record, I rather like your potential embedded projector. But I would be tempted to notch the full depth (if there's nothing to rule this out), line the notch with black velvet and add a perforated metal
cover, painted black on the inside and color matched to the soffit.
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