Masking screen (2 way)- best native aspect ratio - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 23 Old 08-08-2019, 10:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Masking screen (2 way)- best native aspect ratio

I have narrowed down my screen choice to Seymour Screen Excellence TRIM series. This is a more economical version of a motorized masking screen and is 2-way masking. Enlightor Neo acoustically transparent fabric is 0.9 gain but this will be a light controlled dedicated home theater. Projector will be JVC NX7 which has lens memory and shift.

My question is: Would it be better to go with their native 2.40:1 screen which uses side/vertical masking to convert to 16:9 (TRIM L). Or vice versa: native 16:9 screen with top-bottom masking to go to 2.40:1 (TRIM TB) ? See attached picture for the screen sizes they make.

I want to maximize screen size. Maximal width of screen that fits in the room is 153”. For a decent horizontal field of view I need at least 120” width screen. 72” height is maximum.

Mostly watching streamed movies (Apple TV, 70%) with the rest (30%) cable TV and gaming.

http://www.seymourscreenexcellence.com/Trim.asp




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post #2 of 23 Old 08-09-2019, 05:40 AM
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No one can answer that question for you. It depends on what method of presentation you subscribe to. If you are deeply ingrained in CIH presentation then you should select the 2.40 screen based on the tallest height you like to watch 1.85 movies as. If you like CIW (the worst presentation method IMO) then you should select a 16:9 screen based around the same mentioned 1.85 height and watch scope movies less immersive.

If you value the IMAX movies that have been released and the future of “IMAX Enhanced” or if you like CIA presentation (constant image area) then your screen should be sized for CIH+IMAX or CIA+IMAX in this case you would select your screen size based on IMAX immersion. Many feel IMAX should be the width of scope in a CIH setup only taller 16:9. That is what I would personally want. If you look at the specs for IMAX Enhanced they may even recommend greater immersion than that.

Get a selection of movies in different ARs and formats and figure out what works for you. Some great choices for IMAX framing would be Avatar, The Dark Knight Rises, Dunkirk and Aquaman. There are also many great 2.40 scope, 1.85 flat, 1.375 academy, movies not to mention all the good streaming stuff that comes in mostly 2.00 or 16:9 now some of it is very movie like and some of it IMO like Game of Thrones is even IMAX like.

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post #3 of 23 Old 08-09-2019, 05:50 AM
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One more thing to mention for you to ponder. Masking can be masking two different levels of light depending on what you are doing. Thinks about a scope screen and projecting a flat movie to it where you would have side masking. When the movie is zoomed down the whole projected frame is on the screen and what you are masking at the sides isn’t projected light being blocked with some leak-thru. On the other hand when you are using top and bottom masking with a scope movie you are masking the projected part of the image where the projector is trying to make black. In the second case the masking will have more to do as it will be blocking leak-thru light.

For this reason many CIH people with 2.4 screen feel they don’t need extra masking on the sides as they say it doesn’t bother them.

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post #4 of 23 Old 08-09-2019, 09:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post
I have narrowed down my screen choice to Seymour Screen Excellence TRIM series. This is a more economical version of a motorized masking screen and is 2-way masking. Enlightor Neo acoustically transparent fabric is 0.9 gain but this will be a light controlled dedicated home theater. Projector will be JVC NX7 which has lens memory and shift.

My question is: Would it be better to go with their native 2.40:1 screen which uses side/vertical masking to convert to 16:9 (TRIM L). Or vice versa: native 16:9 screen with top-bottom masking to go to 2.40:1 (TRIM TB) ? See attached picture for the screen sizes they make.

I want to maximize screen size. Maximal width of screen that fits in the room is 153”. For a decent horizontal field of view I need at least 120” width screen. 72” height is maximum.

Mostly watching streamed movies (Apple TV, 70%) with the rest (30%) cable TV and gaming.

http://www.seymourscreenexcellence.com/Trim.asp

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Take some notes over a typical 2 week period of watching what the aspect ratio is of the stuff you actually watch.
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post #5 of 23 Old 08-10-2019, 12:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bud16415 View Post
No one can answer that question for you. It depends on what method of presentation you subscribe to. If you are deeply ingrained in CIH presentation then you should select the 2.40 screen based on the tallest height you like to watch 1.85 movies as. If you like CIW (the worst presentation method IMO) then you should select a 16:9 screen based around the same mentioned 1.85 height and watch scope movies less immersive.



If you value the IMAX movies that have been released and the future of “IMAX Enhanced” or if you like CIA presentation (constant image area) then your screen should be sized for CIH+IMAX or CIA+IMAX in this case you would select your screen size based on IMAX immersion. Many feel IMAX should be the width of scope in a CIH setup only taller 16:9. That is what I would personally want. If you look at the specs for IMAX Enhanced they may even recommend greater immersion than that.



Get a selection of movies in different ARs and formats and figure out what works for you. Some great choices for IMAX framing would be Avatar, The Dark Knight Rises, Dunkirk and Aquaman. There are also many great 2.40 scope, 1.85 flat, 1.375 academy, movies not to mention all the good streaming stuff that comes in mostly 2.00 or 16:9 now some of it is very movie like and some of it IMO like Game of Thrones is even IMAX like.


I know for horizontal field of view , the sweet spot for most people is 40-55 degrees. What about vertical ? Numbers I have seen is 15 degrees minimum, but is there a maximum for comfortable viewing ? I assume with imax the vertical will be quite High

Are there any calculators out there that can calculate horizontal AND vertical FoV based on viewing distance for various scope and 16:9 screen sizes ?


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post #6 of 23 Old 08-10-2019, 01:20 AM
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This is such a controversial subject and has been argued one way or another in so many posts it would be impossible to read them all. What it really comes down to is only your personal preference counts and all the industry standards and other peoples opinions are all BS including mine. Ultimately a 16:9 screen, the native AR of the projector, with 4 way masking is ideal assuming you are not either height or width limited in your room would be the perfect screen but of course expensive and not likely to fit your room. If you can get a 16:9 screen with top and bottom masking the width you want and still fit the height into the room that's the way I would go, but again my opinion is BS along with everyone else if it doesn't match your preference.

"Smart enough to know better, to old to care" ------ Dedicated Bat Cave Home Theater, JVC RS49U/Mitsubishi HC7900DW Projector, 110" 16:9 Jamestown screen with variable power masking for CIW 2.50:1 to 16:9, Marantz 7009 with 7.1.4 Atmos with Ohm mains,3 DIY Subs (2 15" (1 ported, 1 sealed and a 12" 4th order bandpass), 1 DIY butt kicker, Custom Built HTPC, 18TB DroboFS NAS

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post #7 of 23 Old 08-10-2019, 03:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post
I know for horizontal field of view , the sweet spot for most people is 40-55 degrees. What about vertical ? Numbers I have seen is 15 degrees minimum, but is there a maximum for comfortable viewing ? I assume with imax the vertical will be quite High

Are there any calculators out there that can calculate horizontal AND vertical FoV based on viewing distance for various scope and 16:9 screen sizes ?


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You're getting a 4K projector. You want to be very close sitting to a very large image to see the details of 4K resolution. I know those recommendations of sweet spots are great and all, but they were created before 4K resolution was even a thing. I sit 7 feet from a 135" 16x9 screen and it's great. My dad is one of those "sit in the back of the theater" guys and he loves sitting this close in here when I have content that can show off 4K resolution.

My recommendation to you is to get the largest screen you can so that you're not losing anything masking. In your case it looks like your room is both width and height constrained. If you go with 16x9 you are going to have 72" tall and 128" wide which is the biggest 16x9 you can get. But you lose out a bit on scope content. The other thing to consider is that maximizing your width for scope at 153" wide gives you a 165" scope screen. Your NX7 is going to have trouble lighting that up well for HDR, unless you're going with some screen gain and a lens etc.

If that was my room, I'd probably want to do a 153x72 screen and mask the sides on 16x9 content and the top / bottom on scope content.

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post #8 of 23 Old 08-10-2019, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post
I know for horizontal field of view , the sweet spot for most people is 40-55 degrees. What about vertical ? Numbers I have seen is 15 degrees minimum, but is there a maximum for comfortable viewing ? I assume with imax the vertical will be quite High

Are there any calculators out there that can calculate horizontal AND vertical FoV based on viewing distance for various scope and 16:9 screen sizes ?


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I wouldn’t call it controversial although it is many times here on the forums but it shouldn’t be. It is personal for sure. You have been given a couple recommendations that I somewhat agree with. There was a time in the days of SVGA and XGA and even 720p where pixel size and density played a part in what most people decided was big enough. Many people were using the SMPTE and such specs and they seemed appropriate. Image sizes were limited in more than one way. Resolution along with cinematography along with peoples desires all factored in. Back in the 60’s and 70’s we could go to an IMAX theater and see what the future held because of their very special process that was way ahead of its time. They made images so clear they could push immersion so far beyond anything of the day. They even came up with new cinematography to suit the super immersion, slow pans and keeping items of interest in the central part of the image. It is one of the reason they made their own nature and science movies and limited the length to 45 minutes.

IMO 1080p solved 90% of the issues for immersion for most people and 4k solved the rest of them. Just because you can doesn’t mean you have to with 4k material and 4k IMAX1.89 at least for now will be the top of the immersion food chain. Trouble is everything isn’t 4k and there is a history of great motion pictures that were made before film resolution was anyway close to what they can do today. Directors understood what they had at the time and adjusted their cinematic process to work with the tech of the day.

You can walk into any theater in the country and be confronted with rows and rows of seats to suit the immersion you feel you want. There is no correct seat for everyone but there is a correct seat for everyone.

This is the reason I personally adopted the variable immersion system I use. I have just one row but with my DIY stealth screen wall without any size or AR I’m able to sit in any virtual row in any movie theater from the 1920’s to the latest and greatest IMAX theater of today.

My immersion is personal based on what I’m watching and I have the ability to alter my likes to better suit my guests no different than how I raise or lower the audio level.

The one constant most all of us have our projectors are 16:9 and the most immersive movies we can get at home are IMAX in the 16:9 AR.

I agree there is a bias based around the height or width constraints of the room we are dealt, but I also know with being able to change seating distance most or some of that can be mitigated.

My suggestion is play around with a stealth wall screen for a good long while and if you are like me you will like it. If not you will learn what you like best. Seating style also adds another layer of complexity to the vertical FOV as when you recline it opens your upper limit a lot. With my stealth screen I often shift the image up and down to suit.

Forget about the angles and let your presentations tell you what you like. Then listen to the others you view with and get their input.

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post #9 of 23 Old 08-10-2019, 10:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post
I know for horizontal field of view , the sweet spot for most people is 40-55 degrees. What about vertical ? Numbers I have seen is 15 degrees minimum, but is there a maximum for comfortable viewing ? I assume with imax the vertical will be quite High

Are there any calculators out there that can calculate horizontal AND vertical FoV based on viewing distance for various scope and 16:9 screen sizes ?


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Where are you located? You could see if you can find some fellow home theater owners and check out what they have in person.


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post #10 of 23 Old 08-12-2019, 09:27 AM
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i made same decision year ago and went 2.40 (old was 16:9) because i watch mostly 2.40 movies and mostly of that material is better quality compared to old 16:9 movies (or series). lower quality movies can go with narrower format
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post #11 of 23 Old 08-12-2019, 09:57 AM
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i made same decision year ago and went 2.40 (old was 16:9) because i watch mostly 2.40 movies and mostly of that material is better quality compared to old 16:9 movies (or series). lower quality movies can go with narrower format
It is not even the “flat” 1.85 movies are lower quality because many are excellent quality it is more a matter of that is the intended method of presentation. The director of the 1.85 movie knew and intended it to be shown that way in the commercial theaters. What many are doing at home is replicating a theater setting at least in terms of immersion. What we also know is the director wasn’t thinking about the two movies being played on a 16:9 TV where the scope movie was of lesser impact.

CIH and a scope screen method is without a doubt better than CIW presentation method.

Then there is IMAX. Important to some and just a flash in the pan to others. Some people use masking software to crop the top and bottom of IMAX content and some fit it into the scope screen and just watch it as non-IMAX. A very small group have screens sized for IMAX.

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post #12 of 23 Old 08-13-2019, 12:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Masking screen (2 way)- best native aspect ratio

Thanks for all the great advice.

Ideally I would like to have CIA 4 way masking, but at screen this size it is cost prohibitive (most >35k). I need a fixed screen.

The largest screen I could fit is 150” wide and my ceiling is 9 feet, but the screen must be 30” off floor. So 78” max vertical.

I think a CIW approach is best with 2 way side masking. I will watch more movies / scope content so a 150” wide scope screen (163” diagonal, 63” high) with side mask would probably be ideal.

The alternative is a 16:9 screen- widest is 130” wide x 73” high. Love the height but will loose too much when masking going to scope.

How would imax 1.85 be handled with a motorized 2 way masking scope screen ? Why is this format considered so immersive ? It’s almost the same as 16:9 / 1.78 which is your regular HDTV.

Now just to find a projector to light this without breaking the bank. Seems nearly impossible without a $40k laser PJ
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post #13 of 23 Old 08-13-2019, 04:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blake View Post
Thanks for all the great advice.

Ideally I would like to have CIA 4 way masking, but at screen this size it is cost prohibitive (most >35k). I need a fixed screen.

The largest screen I could fit is 150” wide and my ceiling is 9 feet, but the screen must be 30” off floor. So 78” max vertical.

I think a CIW approach is best with 2 way side masking. I will watch more movies / scope content so a 150” wide scope screen (163” diagonal, 63” high) with side mask would probably be ideal.

The alternative is a 16:9 screen- widest is 130” wide x 73” high. Love the height but will loose too much when masking going to scope.

How would imax 1.85 be handled with a motorized 2 way masking scope screen ? Why is this format considered so immersive ? It’s almost the same as 16:9 / 1.78 which is your regular HDTV.

Now just to find a projector to light this without breaking the bank. Seems nearly impossible without a $40k laser PJ
If black levels on low APL scenes aren't important to you, a BenQ Laser LK970 / LK990 might be what you need.

Video: JVC RS4500 135" screen in pure black room no light, htpc nvidia 1080ti.
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post #14 of 23 Old 08-13-2019, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by blake View Post
Thanks for all the great advice.

Ideally I would like to have CIA 4 way masking, but at screen this size it is cost prohibitive (most >35k). I need a fixed screen.

The largest screen I could fit is 150” wide and my ceiling is 9 feet, but the screen must be 30” off floor. So 78” max vertical.

I think a CIW approach is best with 2 way side masking. I will watch more movies / scope content so a 150” wide scope screen (163” diagonal, 63” high) with side mask would probably be ideal.

The alternative is a 16:9 screen- widest is 130” wide x 73” high. Love the height but will loose too much when masking going to scope.

How would imax 1.85 be handled with a motorized 2 way masking scope screen ? Why is this format considered so immersive ? It’s almost the same as 16:9 / 1.78 which is your regular HDTV.

Now just to find a projector to light this without breaking the bank. Seems nearly impossible without a $40k laser PJ
IMAX in the new IMAX theaters is 1.89:1 AR some of it when coming out on BD is 16:9 1.78:1 and some could be the 1.89:1 with small black bars. The IMAX enhanced program is just getting underway so I don’t know if anyone knows for sure what it will be.

AR has nothing to do with immersion although a flat 1.85 movie is nearly the same AR as a 1.89 IMAX the directors intent of the IMAX movie is it will be shown much larger. Nothing is cropped and the entire 2.40 scope movie is within the frame with additional above and below the scope image. Generally the scope image is central but some directors extract the scope image not central from the height. Because most movies are central cut some people play them as if they were scope and let the upper and lower masking absorb the IMAX area. Others buy projectors that allow blanking out that part of the movie. Then there are some people that want to see the whole image and will sacrifice the IMAX immersion and show them CIH as if they were a flat 1.85 movie.

Like you I’m pretty much a fan of CIA+IMAX as a presentation method and I in no way have the money for a automatic 4way masking system. I devised a pretty simple and quick method of doing manual 4way masking that just took a few minutes, but even that got old. I noticed it was imposable to mask AR changing movies like Dunkirk and no one cared in my circle of viewers if I masked or not telling they watch the movie not whats outside the movie. I found with my dark gray screen and letting the projector do its thing self masking and a stealth screen wall worked for me. It was a compromise between freedom of immersion and desire for masking perfection. If I was wealthy I would like both, but as I’m not I picked the one that made me happiest and that was variable immersion and the ability to vertically shift. In your case I can see why you need 30” from the floor but if you wanted to do a true IMAX immersion you could cut into that 30” especially when you didn’t have anyone seated in the back row. I would even rather have heads slightly blocking a little of the image to get full immersion. But that is me.

The attached pics should help explain. Keep in mind the full framed IMAX are not available on home media. I wish they were.
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post #15 of 23 Old 08-14-2019, 01:48 PM - Thread Starter
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Do experts actually think IMAX 1.89 is going to take off for cinematic AR ? It is very close to 1.78 and this has certainly NOT taken off for cinema or home format over the last few years (if anything, 2.35 scope content seems to be increasing). So I am not sure why tweaking that to 1.89 would result in rapid “uptake” by content producers.

On the other hand, with IMAX putting there name behind it , perhaps it will. In that case I should rethink my decision and consider 16:9 native CIW screen !
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post #16 of 23 Old 08-14-2019, 02:59 PM
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Do experts actually think IMAX 1.89 is going to take off for cinematic AR ? It is very close to 1.78 and this has certainly NOT taken off for cinema or home format over the last few years (if anything, 2.35 scope content seems to be increasing). So I am not sure why tweaking that to 1.89 would result in rapid “uptake” by content producers.

On the other hand, with IMAX putting there name behind it , perhaps it will. In that case I should rethink my decision and consider 16:9 native CIW screen !
That’s the $64k question.

Do a search here or on google for IMAX Enhanced. It is not just an AR or even about screen size. It is about new AVR equipment and certifications if you want to take it to that extent. IMAX has a program where they laboriously go thru a film frame by frame and apply what they call IMAX DMR digital media remastering. They have been doing it to their own movies first but have deals with major studios to DMR all kinds of movies. For a few years a movie like Sully was shot by Clint Eastwood with IMAX digital cameras and it was shot in two formats at once. 1.89 and 2.35. The 2.35 was a cropped out version so they had a movie to show at older scope theaters the premium version was shown at the new IMAX 1.89 theaters. When it came time to put the movie on BD or UHD BD Eastwood or the studios put out the scope version for home. There are tons of such movies out there and more being made everyday. To date the movies where we got to see the IMAX framing were mostly the expanding AR switching movies like Dunkirk or Aquaman. One of the rare exceptions was Avatar where the director said I want the full version on the home media.

Again don’t confuse AR with intended immersion when viewing. No one is suggesting taking a 1.85 movie and playing it IMAX size just because the AR is close.

So the question is will people like the format and want the format. Keep in mind most, like 99.99% of home media gets played on 16:9 TVs. Lots of fans of modern movies go and see them at IMAX venues and then when they get to buy them they find they only fill up 75% of their screen. No one really loves black bars after you just blew a fortune on a 75-85” TV and you know there is a version that will fill it.

Then there is us few projector people that can actually view it almost IMAX like if we want. We wont be the ones making a significant vote with our cash though. It will be the 4k/8k TV folks wanting to push that technology to the limits with resolution and HDR and maybe no black bars.

There once was a switch from Academy AR to wide screen formats before TV was hardly a thing. TV also switched from 4:3 to 16:9.

So will a new more immersive IMAX framing take hold? There is a push to do so. Will it be like 3D? I don’t know.

What I based my IMAX sizing around is it can do scope just fine and will be the size screen I liked for that anyway. Then there is non movie content like sports and shows like Planet Earth or Game of Thrones that are IMO more like IMAX than not.

No one knows, and I know what I like but that shouldn’t influence anyone else.

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post #17 of 23 Old 08-14-2019, 03:31 PM
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One more thought. A few months back I made a post to the dedicated home theater build thread about this very topic, and I asked what others plans were for the possible onslaught of IMAX Enhanced media. There are at least a few dozen current builds and planning to build threads going on at that time. I waited a few days maybe a week and when I didn’t get a reply I posted again saying thanks for answering my question letting me know that no one cared one way or the other. That post made a ripple and a few people said well we have scope theaters and risers and we have no plans if I remember correctly.

So my belief is most people don’t care too much about presentation let alone proper presentation. There are people that love the look of a scope screen have rooms that are not super tall can’t build high risers want full recline in every row. Then there are people that just want to max the size of everything as big as the room will support and are fine with CIW. Most people that know about the hand full of Christopher Nolan expanding movies and a few other directors view them as an oddity to be dealt with on a scope screen if they have it.

I also started a thread on variable immersion and was about run out on a rail in the CIH forum.

So I really think no one is thinking proactive about IMAX Enhanced that have projectors, and if they are they are not posting.

The threads that are on the topic here at AVS are mostly about the audio side of IMAX Enhanced and many of them are fine with the AR as they have TVs but worry about if their AVR equipment is ready for it.

Bud
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post #18 of 23 Old 08-15-2019, 12:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Bud16415 - great post. Thanks for your insight

For some reason I feel hesitant to build a new theater in scope format with these changes potentially on the horizon .. the masses may soon revolt against black bars on their HDR 75” flat screens!

Thinking about compromises instead of an expensive 4 way CIA masking screen. I wonder how much Picture quality I would lose by installing two ceiling retractable screens - one scope and one 1.78/1.89 instead of a fixed 2 way masking CIH system ? One behind the other ?





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post #19 of 23 Old 08-15-2019, 06:58 AM
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Bud16415 - great post. Thanks for your insight

For some reason I feel hesitant to build a new theater in scope format with these changes potentially on the horizon .. the masses may soon revolt against black bars on their HDR 75” flat screens!

Thinking about compromises instead of an expensive 4 way CIA masking screen. I wonder how much Picture quality I would lose by installing two ceiling retractable screens - one scope and one 1.78/1.89 instead of a fixed 2 way masking CIH system ? One behind the other ?





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We have had some members here do just that or have a tab tensioned screen roll down in front of a fixed screen. There is also a manufacture that builds a dual screen. Another advantage is if you will be using your room for sports viewing and such but also a lights out movie room one screen could be white and one gray or ALR or such.

I have a .5 gain dark gray stealth screen but have often thought about getting a cheap 1.0 white to come down in front of it for 3D. I haven’t done it yet but it’s tempting.

I love IMAX and the idea of even greater immersion when I watch those movies and I hope more are coming. I also just like having the larger area for other things that come along. I watch some auto racing and general sports and even do still photo slide shows and the taller screen area is great as some are shot in portrait some landscape. If you go to YouTube there are amazing 4k independent projects of amazing footage that is shot from drones in outdoor settings ranging from jungles to frozen tundra. They just are fun to watch immersive. There is one member here that likes roller coaster movies shot live. IMAXing them is for sure what you want. I don’t play games but many do and certain games I would think might be more real fully immersive.

Some peoples idea of a home theater is to replicate the movie experience and use it a few times a week like going to the theater. That was what I did in my old house. In this house I wanted it to be all things and I have dozens of different ways to watch all kinds of content. If there is a AV signal it goes on my screen. some of it I want immersive some I don’t. So I size accordingly.

It is not for everyone I understand that.

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My plan is to fit the biggest screen i'm comfortable with in terms of vertical height and make it scope if width allows, or 16:9 if not.
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I have 9.5ft ceilings in a 13.5ft wide room, so I went with almost wall-to-wall 16x9 screen. When a scope movie plays, I just use Kodi (via my HTPC) to move the image down to the bottom of the screen, leaving a doubled-up black bar on the top of the image. Masking is unnecessary in this case.
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Originally Posted by blake View Post
Bud16415 - great post. Thanks for your insight

For some reason I feel hesitant to build a new theater in scope format with these changes potentially on the horizon .. the masses may soon revolt against black bars on their HDR 75” flat screens!

Thinking about compromises instead of an expensive 4 way CIA masking screen. I wonder how much Picture quality I would lose by installing two ceiling retractable screens - one scope and one 1.78/1.89 instead of a fixed 2 way masking CIH system ? One behind the other ?

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You mean like this ? I think two screens is the way to go. I've been using 2 screens for over a decade.
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post #23 of 23 Old 08-15-2019, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by gooch02000 View Post
I have 9.5ft ceilings in a 13.5ft wide room, so I went with almost wall-to-wall 16x9 screen. When a scope movie plays, I just use Kodi (via my HTPC) to move the image down to the bottom of the screen, leaving a doubled-up black bar on the top of the image. Masking is unnecessary in this case.
For a few months I set up an HTPC in fact I still have it set up as another path to play media. I set the projector to my IMAX screen size and left it there. I used a shareware media player that had the ability to download different skins and I found one that had virtually no frame around the image and all the controls disappeared when not needed. So it was virtually a rectangular image that could be sized anywhere on the worktop. I placed the projector as monitor 2 and had nothing on there and I changed the background to 0,0,0 black. Anything I played in the window could be sized or placed anyplace inside the IMAX window.

It was great if I recline I move the movie to the top of the screen if I’m sitting upright I place the center right at eye level. If the content is overly immersive I just size the window.

I even played around with other background colors as a form of bias lighting or mood changing viewing. No one likes gray black bars but I got some reactions from yellow bars. Dark blue wasn’t so bad.

My PC wasn’t up to the task with all the inputs I wanted, but it was proof of concept for me that it will be a nice way to run once I move to a 4k projector and a new PC.

This method of image manipulation doesn’t get talked about enough.

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