Before moving onto what ended up being a FULL YEAR of sanding drywall in my spare time
Some little 'side projects' that happened along the way.
First the screen. Now at the time I started the build, the 'best minds at AVS' were dead set that doing white over black was a bad idea and the image would be too dark, so it was suggested that you do two layers of white, white over grey, or grey over white. I went to the store, and found both a grey and a black on heavy discount, so i ended up buying white, grey, and black and brought them home.
step one obviously is to build the frame. the good news is, even two years later it's holding up just fine. the bad news is, on day one the boards weren't perfectly straight, so if the plan is to make a 'zero edge' style screen, don't do what i did. I still have four pieces of lumber sitting on my basement floor waiting for me to make the black frame, i swear i'll get to it eventually...
once i was happy with it, i painted it flat black
based on recommendations at the time, i wrapped a layer of grey, followed by a top layer of white.
the results were good, but i did notice a 'softness' to the image. I also noticed, that with the unpainted drywall behind the screen, it acted similar to a terrible FALD led. the 'haloing' around bright areas was noticeable, and in fact at times it made it look like screen had three dimming zones(the screen frame divided them up). i decided to leave it until i got the screen wall prepped to see if it was still an issue or not.
anyway, some screen shots
and since this was done early on, here's a few more once the drywall was up. obviously the daytime screen shots are not ideal
the future for the screen will be to pull off the spandex, and re-wrap it with white over black. i'm still finding light passing through the screen and reflecting off the second layer, or the wall to be quite detrimental to the ansi contrast. with a solid screen, i was measuring around 500:1 ansi contrast, with the spandex screen it's closer to 125:1, so quite a significant difference. I also need to make the frame, and i'm hoping when i do that to make a masking system. the plan is to make a panel i can insert in the bottom of the screen, and perhaps two smaller ones for the top corners. the the idea is to be able to have 3 different uses. a 'CIH' 2.35:1 screen with the bottom panel inserted(this will likely be the regular use, and i'll use the projector's zoom to switch between 16:9 and scope), a 16:9 'small' screen(if i find it distracting watching 16:9 on the 2.35CIH screen, then i want to be able to insert the masking to change it back to a 16:9 screen), and the final one would be an 'IMAX' style where i don't have any masking installed.
The AV rack was another project that took shape over the course of the build. One of the perks of the layout i chose was being able to use the crawlspace as my rack. As you can see, i have pretty easy access to it through the media closet, and it's fairly unobtrusive in the room. it's build from a 'fast track system' like this: https://www.homedepot.ca/en/home/p.r...000679919.html
with the shelves cut from MDF
test run, everything fits, and works
after the shelves are painted and the trim attached
Being that this is a new house, I had other projects in mind as well. One of those was fixing up the garage, and i knew that was going to be easier the sooner i did it.
anyway, the relevance of this is that i purchased a double car garage kit, with the intention of using in on the floor in the furnace room as well. I was so impressed with it, i decided to also paint the crawlspace/media closet. i ended up paint the floor in the bathroom too, which will get covered up, but it was either that, or throw it out so i figured i might as well.
The last of the misc projects for now is the star ceiling. i have seen many images posted from fellow members and always like the way they looked. in my previous home, when i painted the ceiling black i found it really opened up the feel. it was like there was no ceiling at all. I figured the only way to one-up that was to add the stars.
way back in 2015 i purchased my paint
I only got around to actually doing this about a week ago, and my opinions on the results are mixed. in the dark, like when everything is off, it looks great! when i'm watching a movie, and it fades to black, it's sometimes enough to notice the stars and that's pretty cool too. but what i don't like is that the paint is white, not clear or dark. so, while most stars would be less visible with more light, these guys go from visible, to less visible, to obvious splatters of white paint. and when there's enough light to start seeing it as paint splatter rather than star light, it not only ruins the effect, but it looks downright tacky. I will say, for $60bux, and about two hours of my time, it'd be tough to beat. But i certainly understand why people with the means are willing to spend thousands for fiber optic ceilings instead. i probably should write-off a professionally painted star sky mural either, but i would absolutely need to see one in person before i ever did it after this experience. if there isn't a paint that dries clear, or a way to make the stars invisible then i just don't think it's worth it.
LED lighting (i have still yet to attach this, so that why the glow is uneven and may change between pics). it actually does a good job of charging the paint, but only around the perimeter. the stars in the middle need another light to charge them. i've ordered a string of black lights to test out, hoping i don't have to stick a black light on the ground just to charge them up
might as well start with the good, this is an overexposed image(you can see how bright the red standby light on my projector is) but it's actually just a bit brighter than what i experience in a completely dark room after my eyes have adjusted.
now for the bad. part of this is my fault, part of it is bad luck, some i think unavoidable though. i had done some testing when i first got the paint, and liked the effect i got with 'sprinkling' the paint onto the wall. after watching some tutorials, i was unfortunately led down the wrong path, and was under the impression that the large stars should be just under the size of a dime(much bigger than i had planned). even still, i decided i would paint my tiny background stars first, and i used the 'dab' method described in most tutorials. my results were very underwhelming, virtually no glow at all. Spoiler alert, in order to glow brightly, the paint needs to be applied thick. anyway, because of that tutorial, i then thought i had to make the stars larger(rather than thicker) and started testing that out. The trouble is, i was doing all of this, in the dark with a UV light. when i turned on the real lights, i saw this:
while the stars were nearly impossible to see by their glow, they were disgustingly obvious with the lights on.
it was after this that i went back over and applied a thicker dab of paint on all my stars. the big 'smears' are still there, and probably make the lights on look worse, but i don't feel they are the only problem.
so i don't know if there's been some camera trickery with some of the shots i've seen, but for my ceiling the only way it looks good, and really looks like starlight is when everything is off. i've seen many pics of gorgeous looking star ceilings with the led trim lighting still on. mine is not one of those...