Seymour Screen Excellence Trim Motorized Masking Screen at CEDIA 2018 - Page 2 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #31 of 50 Old 02-28-2019, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by bobof View Post
I think your priorities change depending on how you use your theatre.
I find correct masking absolutely essential to presentation, and my room is a dedicated cinema room but I'm not the only user - I want my family to enjoy it to it's fullest capability by themselves too. We watch a lot of different content sources in a lot of different aspects, which makes mask panels impractical (without even considering having to get up out of the chair every time you want to change them).

I have what I consider the "holy grail" now... I've got an electric mask screen (room is heavily width constrained, so it is a top / bottom masking 16:9 AT screen) with a Lumagen detecting the aspect ratio of the content by analysing the image, and moving the masks automatically. There is something pretty magical about playing Star Trek on Netflix and without any interaction whatsoever the masks coming in to a perfect 2.0 ratio.

When I built this theatre I did actually sacrifice other things so I could (just) get an electric mask screen into the system, and I'm glad I did every time I see those masks draw in.
Completely agree with you, I want the end result it sounds like you have.

The problem with manual masks is not the effort to do it, it's that you they only give you two ratio options. A motorized mask gives you any ratio you like.

Very interested in this screen!
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post #32 of 50 Old 02-28-2019, 03:04 PM
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Originally Posted by ScottAvery View Post
From our own forum, DIY CIH done right: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/174-d...l#post19590305
That's a great screen, but wow - not everyone has the time, tools, patience and expertise to build a screen like that. I built most things in my theater, but my time is better spent earning money elsewhere and writing a check for the screen. But kudos to those that can build something like that !

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post #33 of 50 Old 02-28-2019, 08:19 PM
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Originally Posted by ChldsPlay View Post
There's a lot of things in this hobby that are worth thousands of dollars, this is not anywhere close to being one of them.
For you. But clearly others (and that would include me). think differently. And considering the amount of engineering involved in designing and building one of these, the price is more than reasonable.

Certainly there are less expensive ways to put masks in place. But having owned an automated masking systems for the past 7 or 8 years, I consider it mandatory for our theater. And I'm far from a "billionaire". Some folks spend tons of money on very fancy woodwork, lighting systems, star ceilings, etc in their theaters. I chose to put 98% of my money is function over form.

Each to his own!!
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post #34 of 50 Old 02-28-2019, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnnyWilkinson View Post
The problem with manual masks is not the effort to do it, it's that you they only give you two ratio options. A motorized mask gives you any ratio you like.
Unless your manual masks are just the leading edge with skirting. :-P I spent a couple hours last weekend creating manual masks for my Silver Ticket 16:9 (150"d) screen which are infinitely adjustable. Each mask is a 12' foot board wrapped in black velvet with black velvet skirting attached. At the far left and right sides of each mask are magnetic handles. I've got vertical metal slats attached to the wall on the left and right sides of the projector screen that hold up the masks. The masks straddle the screen with just enough clearance providing a nice clean leading edge despite being one inch in front of the screen material. To move the masks I just slide each end of the given mask along the metal slats. When not in use I position the masks above and below the projector screen. Turned out really well and cost very little. End result shown below.



To learn more feel free to check out the thread I started here.

I'm saving my pennies at present for a Seymour AV Proscenium Masking Frame (PRH130 16:9 130"w, 149.2"d). The manual masking I just worked up will more than tide me over until then.
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post #35 of 50 Old 02-28-2019, 11:12 PM
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Completely agree with you, I want the end result it sounds like you have.

The problem with manual masks is not the effort to do it, it's that you they only give you two ratio options. A motorized mask gives you any ratio you like.

Very interested in this screen!
For me it is as much about the effort as anything else. The family will never bother installing them, so it will bug me they're watching a rubbish presentation. I might watch 2 or 3 different aspects in a session, and I don't want to be up and down out of my chair every time, pausing the content to see where the edge is that I need to mask, and then fiddling to position them. All that either in the dark, or having to turn up the lights to do it.

Alternative money arguments; the UK the price of a JVC NX9 is comparable to an N7 with an electric masking screen. In my opinion with that kind of choice you'd be nuts to go for the marginal improvement of the NX9.

Anyway, that's the benefit of being able to spec your own theatre - choosing what is important to you
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post #36 of 50 Old 03-01-2019, 10:05 AM
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My family won't watch a movie without the masks now. Yes, it does take a minute or two to get them in position. We don't look at that process as a chore though. It's fun actually and the payoff is well worth it. At the same time, we wouldn't complain if the masking was built in to the frame and automated. Looking forward to upgrading to a Seymour AV Proscenium Masking Frame (PRH130 16:9 130"w, 149.2"d). Should be ready to pull the trigger in 3-4 months. For the time being, the manual masking will certainly suffice. To each his own naturally.
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post #37 of 50 Old 03-01-2019, 10:43 AM
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My family won't watch a movie without the masks now. Yes, it does take a minute or two to get them in position. We don't look at that process as a chore though. It's fun actually and the payoff is well worth it. At the same time, we wouldn't complain if the masking was built in to the frame and automated. Looking forward to upgrading to a Seymour AV Proscenium Masking Frame (PRH130 16:9 130"w, 149.2"d). Should be ready to pull the trigger in 3-4 months. For the time being, the manual masking will certainly suffice. To each his own naturally.
I'm probably the only person tall enough in my family to manoeuvre a top mask into place, which also doesn't help in terms of suitability...
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post #38 of 50 Old 03-01-2019, 11:14 AM
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I'm probably the only person tall enough in my family to maneuver a top mask into place, which also doesn't help in terms of suitability...
That's why they invented the step stool. :-P I can maneuver the top mask easily enough on my own. If any of my family members want to help they have to grab the step stool from the kitchen. :-)
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post #39 of 50 Old 03-01-2019, 12:37 PM
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The Proscenium looks to be an incredible price/performance product. Major kudos to the SeymourAV team. My only complaint is that I selfishly want a 16x9 160"-wide version!
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post #40 of 50 Old 03-01-2019, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by ChldsPlay View Post
So...still nowhere near reasonably priced.
i'm with you. i managed to not only build my own AT screen, but also buy my home theater components, and renovate(from bare drywall) my entire basement for less than 10grand USD...


my assumption is that products like these have such a small market that the price ends up having a very significant portion just to cover the R&D costs. I'm pretty sure if you stole their design, and tool system, you could make your own for under a grand easy. but that development has to be paid for, and if they only sell a few thousand of these, that could literally means thousands per unit extra.

it's way out of my budget, and making a non-automated masking system is well within my skillset, so this is never going to appeal to me. But I can at least understand why the price is as high as it is.

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post #41 of 50 Old 03-01-2019, 03:36 PM
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i'm with you. i managed to not only build my own AT screen, but also buy my home theater components, and renovate(from bare drywall) my entire basement for less than 10grand USD...


my assumption is that products like these have such a small market that the price ends up having a very significant portion just to cover the R&D costs. I'm pretty sure if you stole their design, and tool system, you could make your own for under a grand easy. but that development has to be paid for, and if they only sell a few thousand of these, that could literally means thousands per unit extra.

it's way out of my budget, and making a non-automated masking system is well within my skillset, so this is never going to appeal to me. But I can at least understand why the price is as high as it is.
My mask screen arrived to the UK in 3 2.5m x 0.6m crates from Poland, on a custom pallet. I'm sure the packaging and delivery alone came to way more than $1000, and actually a lot of what you're paying for has to be for someone to design something that is pretty huge and put it together in such a way that it can be site assembled relatively quickly with minimal tools and experience.

Kudos to anyone making their own. Wish I had the time and inclination.
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post #42 of 50 Old 03-01-2019, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by bobof View Post
I think your priorities change depending on how you use your theatre.
I find correct masking absolutely essential to presentation, and my room is a dedicated cinema room but I'm not the only user - I want my family to enjoy it to it's fullest capability by themselves too. We watch a lot of different content sources in a lot of different aspects, which makes mask panels impractical (without even considering having to get up out of the chair every time you want to change them).
remember the days when you had to physically get up to change the disc every time you wanted to watch a different movie...

Quote:
I have what I consider the "holy grail" now... I've got an electric mask screen (room is heavily width constrained, so it is a top / bottom masking 16:9 AT screen) with a Lumagen detecting the aspect ratio of the content by analysing the image, and moving the masks automatically. There is something pretty magical about playing Star Trek on Netflix and without any interaction whatsoever the masks coming in to a perfect 2.0 ratio.
ok, that is pretty cool! i don't know if it's $5000 cool, but before reading that i wasn't convinced this kind of masking system would be the best option even if money were no object. so at least now i'm starting to see the potential i guess

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post #43 of 50 Old 03-03-2019, 07:13 AM
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It bothers me somewhat that people are posting DIY solutions on youtube called CIH and showing masking for CIW. There is more misinformation than information anymore it seems.

First off there are two types of gray bars the ones where the projector is trying to stop the light and make black such as a scope movie top and bottom and the second type is when you zoom in on a true CIH setup and the sides of the screen are not projected to and are only illuminated by what ever ambient is in the room. Many true CIH theaters that are light tight and dark treated with very good projectors, need no masking to the sides to reports of their viewers.

The screen shown in the OP is more of a CIH+IMAX setup maybe CIA, or some variable system where you change height and then use side panels or not depending on how well your room and projector are. With IMAX sizing a screen you need to be prepared for a larger size screen and I assume one of their more expensive units.

Masking is so much a personal choice along with being adaptive. I have found AV enthusiasts are much more annoyed by gray bars than average people and to the point with conditioning from watching 16:9 panel TVs average people have a totally different adversity to gray bars than the visual artifact of the bar. They hate them because as they put it the image is not filling their screen. In affect what they don’t like is the CIW and the image being too small, as they have set their seating distance to be comfortable based on the height of the TV.

I have adapted my own method that is fully and instantly adjustable to every and any AR change, even movies like Dunkirk that change AR many times. My DIY method of 4way masking isn’t for everyone and I recommend it to no one unless you want to ponder the idea behind it. I have a near perfect room, black ceilings and very dark gray walls and no admittance of any outside light. I have a projector with the dark chip 3 DLP technology and also a dynamic dimming feature similar to a dynamic iris if I chose to use it. There are even much better theater projectors of other technologies out there for black level control.

My screen is a stealth fully painted DIY screen wall. It is a simple neutral gray of .5 gain. My projector has ample lumens for the attenuation so I hit the screen with double the lumens you would for a 1.0 white screen.

Without any indication to my guests of an expected size image when they come in they only know the image size is what it is. I have the ability to go into IMAX levels of immersion but I don’t always present that way unless the content is IMAX. I do show mainly at a good level of immersion for all content and when watching at proper immersion levels for the AR and type content The edges of the image are well outside the range of acute vision and be they are noticeable or not viewers are not concerned with them.

This process of self-masking is part the construction of the screen wall, part the sizing of the images, part projector technology and part physiological not having anything to dipict a screen shape or size before the movie starts.

The benefit is cost and simplicity.


On edit: The reason I adapted to this method over the DIY 4way manual masking I had used for about 4 years before that was the changing nature of the media we watch. The expanding movies into IMAX, The AR changing movies like Life of Pi and The Grand Budapest Hotel, not to mention all the streaming 2.00 and other AR we often watch one or two per night. TV now is also playing with AR non stop. Then I also wanted to adopt a variable sizing presentation because new media being produced is so much cleaner it can be shown larger, but then again I’m not about to stop watching my classics that can’t handle IMAX immersion levels like the new IMAX1.89 movies.

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Last edited by bud16415; 03-03-2019 at 07:23 AM.
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post #44 of 50 Old 03-05-2019, 05:18 AM
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Originally Posted by ChldsPlay View Post

There's a lot of things in this hobby that are worth thousands of dollars, this is not anywhere close to being one of them.
We all have our own priorities.

To me, masking is essential.

And if I’m doing masking, ease of use and a nice method of presentation is essential.


I made the decision when designing my home theatre 10 years ago to put money in to a Carada automated masking system and augment it with a remote controlled curtain for side masking. The result is a totally controllable 4 way masking system.

With a push of a button I can have any aspect ratio masked, not just one or two. And from the comfort of my couch instead of having to get up and place panels on and take them off. This has been the single best decision I made back then in terms of how it has repaid me over the years in an easy to use, professional looking presentation. To me saying remote controllable masking in a dedicated home theatre set up isn’t worth it because you can get up and place panels on yourself is like spending thousands on a high end TV but saving a bit of money by not getting the remote “because you can always get up and change the channels yourself.”
Well, yeah, but it’s a heck of a nicer experience not having to do that, especially as I tended to watch something in my home theatre almost every night.

To each his own of course. I’d never tell anyone else their set of priorities makes their decision “not worth it.”

Cheers!
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post #45 of 50 Old 03-05-2019, 05:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChldsPlay View Post

There's a lot of things in this hobby that are worth thousands of dollars, this is not anywhere close to being one of them.
We all have our own priorities.

To me, masking is essential.

And if I’m doing masking, ease of use and a nice method of presentation is essential.


I made the decision when designing my home theatre 10 years ago to put money in to a Carada automated masking system and augment it with a remote controlled curtain for side masking. The result is a totally controllable 4 way masking system.

With a push of a button I can have any aspect ratio masked, not just one or two. And from the comfort of my couch instead of having to get up and place panels on and take them off. This has been the single best decision I made back then in terms of how it has repaid me over the years in an easy to use, professional looking presentation. To me saying remote controllable masking in a dedicated home theatre set up isn’t worth it because you can get up and place panels on yourself is like spending thousands on a high end TV but saving a bit of money by not getting the remote “because you can always get up and change the channels yourself.”
Well, yeah, but it’s a heck of a nicer experience not having to do that, especially as I tended to watch something in my home theatre almost every night.

To each his own of course. I’d never tell anyone else their set of priorities makes their decision “not worth it.”

Cheers!
But does the remote cost twice as much as the TV?

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post #46 of 50 Old 03-05-2019, 06:19 AM
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But does the remote cost twice as much as the TV?
The masking cost less than my JVC projector.

But I consider the masking cost in the context of what I was spending to do a home theatre reno.
It’s an expense to consider in the context of the experience I was trying to create, and it was a tiny fraction
of the cost of the overall home theater.

Now if someone has, say, a $1,500 - $2,500 projector or something then, and maybe wasn’t spending for a home theater reno as well, given that priority or budget I can
see why they wouldn’t be spending $5,000 on remote controlled masking. But this is why you can’t just say commercial automated masking systems “aren’t worth the money.” Given other budgets or other personal sense of priority, they certainly are.

For me, I like automated masking enough that I’d try to budget it in, even if that meant starting with a cheaper projector.
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post #47 of 50 Old 03-05-2019, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by ChldsPlay View Post
But does the remote cost twice as much as the TV?
I know your post was tongue in cheek but it is also very true. As a kid in the days before remotes I was the remote. We only had 3 stations in our town but when dad said change the channel I jumped up and did it. It involved a bit more than turning the knob though I also had to mess with the rabbit ears and sometimes stand there touching the antenna to keep the signal coming in.

To me the point isn’t if someone is using manual masking or automatic masking, the point is if they are embracing variable image sizing in some fashion.

If I had the money there is a whole heck of a lot of things I could spend it on in my home theater. I would likely end up with something like Rob Hahn’s theater. Unfortunately I have other priorities at this time so we do what we do and make compromises.

I am a strong advocate of being able to adjust screen size as a method of presentation and have my own methods of doing such. But over the last few months I have become aware that no one else or almost no one else seems to care. There are a very tiny few that embrace CIH and even a smaller number are thinking beyond that.

IMAX Enhanced is right around the corner and I can’t find anyone even interested in talking about it beyond the audio aspects. The movie First Man just came out with expanding IMAX sequences that were beautifully done and the CIH folks are good with cropping that out and the CIW folks are ok with watching the scope sequences under immersive. Then there are the very few variable folks that are bothered that they can’t mask for both at once. Media is changing I watched a Jeep commercial last night that changed AR 3 times in 30 seconds.
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post #48 of 50 Old 03-06-2019, 09:22 AM
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To me the point isn’t if someone is using manual masking or automatic masking, the point is if they are embracing variable image sizing in some fashion.
Totally agree, which is why we make masking systems that vary in price from $349 to $142,147. And if that range isn't wide enough, we support DIY selling materials by the foot. You can do masking for maybe $50, so there's not an economic reason against it.

The "for the masses" value arguments are always a rabbit hole. When Mercedes released their C-class to get down to the $40k price class, "for the masses," both sides of the argument are still true: that lower priced market segment was much larger - massier - than where their E-class was, but could still be derided by others as not being affordable for the masses that they considered within their value class.

Our TAM screens are both considered a bargain within their product class and justifiably derided here on AVS for being silly priced. At half that price, the TRIM screen has that exact same statement. At half again of that price, the Seymour AV's Proscenium screen also has that exact same statement. And finally the magnetic masking panels at $349 are also considered a bargain for what they do, and derided by those that would prefer to wrap foam board with some velvet and technically accomplish the same thing (acoustics not withstanding). The key is to illustrate to people the benefits of masking, and then speak within their budgets of how that can be facilitated. As a Midwest-moderate dork I understand the simple joy of sticking panels into a screen, but can understand why Oprah doesn't even want to have to push buttons.

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IMAX Enhanced is right around the corner and I can’t find anyone even interested in talking about it beyond the audio aspects. The movie First Man just came out with expanding IMAX sequences that were beautifully done and the CIH folks are good with cropping that out and the CIW folks are ok with watching the scope sequences under immersive. Then there are the very few variable folks that are bothered that they can’t mask for both at once. Media is changing I watched a Jeep commercial last night that changed AR 3 times in 30 seconds.
In an interview in Widescreen Review, they discussed aspect ratios for IMAX Enhanced releases. They seem clear that they'll push toward 1.78 or their digital IMAX's 1.9 ratio, but unfortunately expressly said they weren't going to pillarbox people's displays with 1.43 content. That disappoints me, as I'd love to have Dunkirk, etc, in it's floor-drops-out, ceiling-pops-out glory. Or even Ghost Protocol in 1.78. I get why those variable AR sequences infuriate people without masking systems (I can help with that ), but I'd rather see the content chopped at the user level if they so choose, so that those that want to view the entire frame can do so as they are able. The nostalgic in me would enjoy making nearly 4:3 ratio screens, too.

Here's an interesting article I read on the current state of IMAX and ratios: https://medium.com/the-projector/fir...ng-f5082b2687c Unfortunately, many of the theaters that figured into their release count included the dreadful dome screens. While they were in fact projecting 70mm film in the native 1.43 ratio, the geometric distortion should be considered a war crime. I saw The Dark Knight in one here in Iowa and it was both astoundingly terrific (when the center slice had action, such as when the semi truck does an end-over, over your head), and poisonous. I was on ibuprofen for three days after trying to make out what the kidney-bean shaped actors and buildings were doing or where the action was taking place with 24fps chopping across ~160 degree viewing.

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post #49 of 50 Old 03-06-2019, 02:42 PM
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So...still nowhere near reasonably priced.
It is very, very time-consuming and difficult to produce a precision motorized masking system that works reliably. For what they are selling, $10K is an absolute bargain.

That said, I am not a fan of their screen materials. I want V6.
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post #50 of 50 Old 03-06-2019, 02:52 PM
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Chris I started out 15 years ago with a 4:3 projector screen setup and in those days a 120” 6 foot high screen was almost unheard of in a basement HT when most people were watching 32” 4:3 CRT TVs. It was the days of DVD a 4:3 packaged media and we had seating about 1.5 screen height for IMAX shows. Of course pixel density was a little problem we overlooked though going after immersion.

I did say that right IMAX tried this once before and I had 90% of their nature and history and science 45 minute movies on DVD. We had big sound 5.2 that would hurt your chest when it hit and we would strap in and enjoy these movies over and over with friends and family that came to the mini IMAX.

Now here we are about 10 generations later in equipment and lamenting we wish IMAX would give us the 1.43 version of these new great movies like Dunkirk to watch but the best they can do is 1.77. Don’t get me wrong the 1.77 is even a tad better than 1.90 and much better than 2.35 IMO.

This is the great part of a fully variable presentation method and if for some crazy reason IMAX decided to release Nolan’s 1.43 version with pillar boxes on UHD BD I would be first in line and I would be figuring a way to back up my projector and show it as wide as I show scope and super tall. Wouldn’t that be a treat. I’m happy it came 1.77 tall though. It seems so odd because a movie varies we would get the IMAX version but a movie like Sully or many others that had a IMAX1.9 version the whole movie we had to get the scope version. The only exception was Avatar. James Cameron was clear headed enough to say it makes me feel like I’m flying and falling more when my vision is expanded both ways lets put that on the disc instead of the cropped scope version.

A few of the Nolan expanders got me thinking and I was masking them to IMAX and when over half the movie was scope I had some letter box bars. I got to asking people if the bars bothered them. I got only puzzled looks and what gray bars? I also got what expanding aspect ratio? People were not bothered and didn’t notice any of it in my theater and in the IMAX theaters. That got me wondering if they didn’t notice a bar when it was within the illuminated frame of the projector would they notice them outside the frame. I just dropped masking totally and only one person noticed and cared and that was me. Then after a while I only noticed or cared when I hated the movie and I ended up as I often do analyzing the PQ rather than following the movie. It became apparent to me and just me I’m not asking anyone else to agree, that masking didn’t make that much of a difference to me anymore, and immersion did. The more immersive I show something that warrants immersion the more the gray bars out of my vision and the less I care about them. For me I used to think in a perfect world with Oprah money I would love touch less automatic masking. Now I don’t think I would care even if I could have it.

Most here will disagree some will strongly disagree, and that is why we all do it our own way. I always think back to being a kid watching movies in our local Warner movie palace. I didn’t know what to look for or how poor some of those old movies really were. I was so sucked into the movie I didn’t have time to analyze the image. I’m slowly getting back to the simple pleasure of immersing in the immersion.
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