100" vs 120" - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 14 Old 03-19-2019, 02:58 PM - Thread Starter
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100" vs 120"

I know 120" is obviously bigger but is it worth the difference in screen size?



I will be sitting 10 to 12 feet back.



Thanks.
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-19-2019, 03:04 PM
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I reckon so!
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post #3 of 14 Old 03-19-2019, 06:43 PM
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Yup

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post #4 of 14 Old 03-19-2019, 06:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Yup

Thank you.
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post #5 of 14 Old 03-20-2019, 10:21 AM
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A general rule of thumb has been that a middle-of-the-road screen size/viewing distance has been 10" of diagonal per 1' of viewing distance (eyes to screen), so 100" for 10' or 120" for 12'. However, there is so much variability in preference that it's impossible to guess what will work best for any individual. Think in terms of a commercial movie theater where some prefer to sit in the front row, some in the back row and some in every row in between.

The best recommendation wherever possible is to experiment with different image sizes on a blank wall before settling on a screen size. Generally speaking you want the image to be big enough to be cinematic and immersive without being so big that it causes eyestrain. The best way to determine what size will work best for you at your viewing distance is to let your own eyes tell you. What works best for others may or may not be optimum for you.
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post #6 of 14 Old 03-24-2019, 01:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ng4ever View Post
I know 120" is obviously bigger but is it worth the difference in screen size?

I will be sitting 10 to 12 feet back.

Thanks.
IMO, go as big as you can fit/afford(and that includes having a projector capable of producing a good picture at your desired size).

I sit 10 ft away from my 135, and wish I could have squeezed a 150 in my room. (But I dont have the distance in my room to throw a 150" screen, plus my speakers wouldnt fit).
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post #7 of 14 Old 03-24-2019, 08:03 AM
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A 100” screen is about 30 sq ft and a 120” is about 43 sq ft.

That’s over 40% more area and that is huge both visually and in terms of brightness depending on the screen and projector you pick.

Now if you set 10’ from the 100” and 12’ from the 120” you will have exactly the same visual immersion. Or in other words the same amount of your vision will be taken up by image.

Now the next obvious question would be why don’t I just get a 50” TV and sit 5’ from the screen as that will give you the same visual immersion?

The answer is our brains and eyes and even our conditioning relate to actual size of images. We know the scale regardless of the amount of immersion it takes up. When TV sets were 19”-25” back in the day and 32”-36” came out they seemed huge. That was the conditioning. Then there is our eyes and we have 2 of them and they each see a slightly different image and they also focus on the distance to the screen and convey size. We know a billboard is huge even when it is far away. When we walk into an IMAX theater and see an 8 story screen we know it is different than a TV up close.

This effect of the physical size inspiring awe is hard to pinpoint and is different person to person at least in the conditioning part of it. Another factor that helps is if the room is blacked out so all we see is the image it helps trick us or allows our mind to forget the size somewhat.

I play around with zooming and size and immersion more than most people do and I sit a little closer than most do depending on content. For example my screen size is 110” max and that’s where I would watch an IMAX movie and I will sit 8’ back. That is as big as my room and projector will allow and in terms of immersion it is perfect and in terms of size it is just at the edge of what I would call theater like. If I had the room I would go to 120 and adjust my seating back just a little. For others a 100” screen seems perfectly theater like to them. Some also go all in for the effect size plays and say go as large as your room can stand. They are not wrong in saying that but IMO there is a point that most people will find good enough to call it a big screen experience before they get that large. For me right now in my life with my eyes and background I’m inspired at 110” much below 90” the image is beautiful and I like watching it, but it seems more TV like than theater like.

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post #8 of 14 Old 03-24-2019, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bud16415 View Post
A 100” screen is about 30 sq ft and a 120” is about 43 sq ft.

That’s over 40% more area and that is huge both visually and in terms of brightness depending on the screen and projector you pick.

Now if you set 10’ from the 100” and 12’ from the 120” you will have exactly the same visual immersion. Or in other words the same amount of your vision will be taken up by image.

Now the next obvious question would be why don’t I just get a 50” TV and sit 5’ from the screen as that will give you the same visual immersion?

The answer is our brains and eyes and even our conditioning relate to actual size of images. We know the scale regardless of the amount of immersion it takes up. When TV sets were 19”-25” back in the day and 32”-36” came out they seemed huge. That was the conditioning. Then there is our eyes and we have 2 of them and they each see a slightly different image and they also focus on the distance to the screen and convey size. We know a billboard is huge even when it is far away. When we walk into an IMAX theater and see an 8 story screen we know it is different than a TV up close.

This effect of the physical size inspiring awe is hard to pinpoint and is different person to person at least in the conditioning part of it. Another factor that helps is if the room is blacked out so all we see is the image it helps trick us or allows our mind to forget the size somewhat.

I play around with zooming and size and immersion more than most people do and I sit a little closer than most do depending on content. For example my screen size is 110” max and that’s where I would watch an IMAX movie and I will sit 8’ back. That is as big as my room and projector will allow and in terms of immersion it is perfect and in terms of size it is just at the edge of what I would call theater like. If I had the room I would go to 120 and adjust my seating back just a little. For others a 100” screen seems perfectly theater like to them. Some also go all in for the effect size plays and say go as large as your room can stand. They are not wrong in saying that but IMO there is a point that most people will find good enough to call it a big screen experience before they get that large. For me right now in my life with my eyes and background I’m inspired at 110” much below 90” the image is beautiful and I like watching it, but it seems more TV like than theater like.
You articulated in this post so well something I've experienced yet not previously thought about as you described.

I find that I prefer larger screens, regardless of whether I sit further back or not to compensate. I saw a 3, 4 and 5 meter wide screen in quick succession, but I was sitting 3, 4 & 5 meters back respectively. All should have been equally immersive, but the 5 meter one was just something special. At the time I just thought it was through looking at the carpet and seeing how far it actually was to the screen, but you describe it far more succinctly. I guess the carpet (floor) is just one of the many ways our eyes/brain determine how big something actually is - adapting for our perspective.

Subjectively, I found the sense of space - being so far away from something, was so appealing. Hence I'm going to go for as large a screen as I can.

OP - I would therefore recommend the larger size.
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-24-2019, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnnyWilkinson View Post
You articulated in this post so well something I've experienced yet not previously thought about as you described.

I find that I prefer larger screens, regardless of whether I sit further back or not to compensate. I saw a 3, 4 and 5 meter wide screen in quick succession, but I was sitting 3, 4 & 5 meters back respectively. All should have been equally immersive, but the 5 meter one was just something special. At the time I just thought it was through looking at the carpet and seeing how far it actually was to the screen, but you describe it far more succinctly. I guess the carpet (floor) is just one of the many ways our eyes/brain determine how big something actually is - adapting for our perspective.

Subjectively, I found the sense of space - being so far away from something, was so appealing. Hence I'm going to go for as large a screen as I can.

OP - I would therefore recommend the larger size.
Thanks for reading and reading into my post.

When IMAX decided to go more mainstream and invented the new aspect ratio 1.89 as roughly the width of scope in terms of immersion only taller. They started opening new theaters and rebuilding others to the new specs. People had an idea of what IMAX was and IMAX had done a good job branding their 1.43 IMAX product for many years starting in the 1960’s.

People walked into the new IMAX1.89 theaters with a premium ticket price and somehow expected a 80’ tall screen and saw a 40’ tall screen that didn’t look much different than the screen down the street, and they started calling it LieMAX. They didn’t conceder the seating had been moved up closer and the projection and sound improved all they reacted to, was the screen wasn’t IMAX in size.

There is defiantly something to the perception factor surrounding the size and what feelings it brings out in us.

At my old house back in the days when most people thought a 36” CRT TV was huge I built a basement home theater in my old farm house. The ceiling height was 6’4” and I built a 120” 4:3 screen 6’ tall 8’ wide and added a bright XGA business cross over projector. We would play the IMAX DVDs that were encoded as 4:3. I had almost every IMAX nature and science movie they made. The reaction in a bat cave to movies that reached floor to ceiling along with a huge 4.2 sound system was amazing. All things perceived kicked in the low height the black surround, big sound and no tells as to scale once things started and then add in no one had seen anything like it at home. I had more people down there that I didn’t even know as friends were inviting their friends.

Here is a read you might find interesting.
https://www.avsforum.com/forum/68-di...creen-20a.html
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post #10 of 14 Old 03-25-2019, 07:57 AM
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If we were all the same we could recommend to others what works best for us and they would all find it best for them as well. But we're not all the same. We're all wired a little differently. We perceive and appreciate different things. It's most obvious in a commercial movie theater where some prefer to sit in the front row, some in the back row and some in every row in between. If you prefer sitting in the front row, telling those who prefer sitting in the back row that they would like it better if they sat in the front row will likely not go over very well. We all have our own personal sweet spot that works best for us but not for everyone else.
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post #11 of 14 Old 03-25-2019, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave in Green View Post
If we were all the same we could recommend to others what works best for us and they would all find it best for them as well. But we're not all the same. We're all wired a little differently. We perceive and appreciate different things. It's most obvious in a commercial movie theater where some prefer to sit in the front row, some in the back row and some in every row in between. If you prefer sitting in the front row, telling those who prefer sitting in the back row that they would like it better if they sat in the front row will likely not go over very well. We all have our own personal sweet spot that works best for us but not for everyone else.
When we do a big screen at home in some form of a home theater we are in a way assuming everyone likes the same screen size or rather the same immersion.

Your advice for the OP is right on he has to find out for him or her self what they like. That then doesn’t mean that’s what others that will be watching it will like though. We don’t know their room and they may have seating here and there and people will sit where they like best like how it was done when I was a kid. Mom and Dad sat back on the couch older brothers and sisters sat off to the side and us kids tried to lay on the floor as close as mom would let us. She wasn’t a scientist but she knew if we sat to close we would get some unknown radiation on us. She wasn’t a doctor but she knew if we watched with the lights out we would damage our eyes. People have always had preference for how much image size they like in theaters and at home and we are not all alike for sure. Then there are some of us that just don’t know. I like really good quality IMAX movies like Dunkirk huge and immersive but regular TV not so much.

We all seem to have our likes and dislikes but I’m almost the only person I know that uses the zoom to change the size of the image to suite what I like or what my guests like with the only protocol being what we like best. Many projectors make it very easy to change size. Everyone likes to get a screen a certain size and then always fill it as large as they can.

Bud
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post #12 of 14 Old 03-25-2019, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by ng4ever View Post
I know 120" is obviously bigger but is it worth the difference in screen size?

I will be sitting 10 to 12 feet back. ...
It depends. I sit ~15' back from a 100" screen and I'm comfortable with the size. I could probably go 106" (like my buddy has) and still be perfectly happy. Not sure I'd go 120". But that's just me. YMMV, of course.
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post #13 of 14 Old 03-25-2019, 01:01 PM
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I sit back 10' 6" from a 110" diagonal screen and it seems just right, if not slightly bordering on being too big (watching movies in 16x9/1.85:1 aspect ratio). However, I watch most films in cinescope (2.39:1 aspect ratio) and from that distance, the view is very good but I feel I could go bigger.
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post #14 of 14 Old 03-28-2019, 06:58 AM
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I have a 12x12 room with the sofa against the back wall. Was living at 100" screen and finay got the itch to go bigger. 120" screen gives me about a foot gap from both walls which is just enough room for the speakers.

Definitely more immersive, somewhere between THX recommended and Imax feeling. Scope type movies will look much better as will Imax movies.

Also, with less visible wall space I can easily and cleanly frame the surrounding area to cut down on reflecting light, though I might just stick with darker paint. Maybe a deep blue to contrast the dark tan side walls which will also get some deep maroon velvet curtains soon.

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