Originally Posted by mcnallbe
It sounds like you’ve a dedicated home cinema setup where you’ve gone to some effort to really get a nice setup.
I don’t see it explicitly mentioned, but I imagine you’ve also controlled unwanted lighting, so the only lights are those you deliberately choose to leave on and from the projector itself?
If that’s the case, why did you choose a grey screen rather than a white one? Haven’t you then had to crank up the PJ output to compensate, and you’re back to where you would have been with a white screen and lower PJ output?
I think there’s something about grey screens in a light controlled room I just don’t get.
Here was my thoughts on the subject and why I made the choice I did going with an ND gray screen and one as dark of gray as I chose .5 gain.
First off my room is 99.9% light tight. During the day hours with the BOC curtains drawn on the entry archway there is so little light coming in it’s almost impossible to detect. There are no windows or any other way for light to enter. The walls are very dark and the ceiling black, floors and furniture are also dark. In terms of perfect say everything black velvet covered being a 10 I’m a 9-9.5 I guess.
This would be a perfect room for a Lambertine 1.0 white screen as you suggest.
I watch lots of movies in the perfect lights out condition on my Lambertine .5 gray screen with doubling the lumens I would need for the 1.0 white screen. Because I have a fairly bright projector and a modest screen size 110” max area on my stealth painted wall I get the exact same image returning as I would with white. Even though the room is very good a little light rebounds to the screen the same amount as with the white screen and half the lumens but in the case of the .5 gray it attenuates 50% of that rebound light thus half the impact on CR loss albeit small. That’s reason one for gray.
Reason two is the room is multi purpose and with young kids or friends over to watch sports or even evening TV while eating pizza and drinks I don’t want the room so black when the projector goes dark I can’t see my hand in front of my face. So I add back in what I call good ambient light and there is a huge difference in it being bounced off a white ceiling or leaking in from outside. When it is controlled it can be directed right where it is needed and what bounces off gets absorbed by the dark elements in the room before much gets back to the screen. A little will always make it back and again the dark screen takes care of half of that. Friends come over for a bright sports showing and the brighter the image the more task lighting the room can take. I have often heard I didn’t think projectors worked in bright rooms. I do one additional trick for that type of showing and that is I go to a brighter setting. Where I might like 10-15FL off the screen brightness in the dark for movies I will bump that up higher for bright sports content even if the brighter mode has a little less color accuracy CR is more important to me and the brightness / dark screen seems to help that.
Reason three is with a stealth screen I don’t deal with masking I have a dark chip 3 DLP 1080p .65” DMD projector and it does ok with self masking and does better IMO self masking on a dark screen. I’m not sure of the science and I do get faint black bars but I also use zooming to change image size sometimes staying within the full 16:9 frame. We watch some old time TV and poor quality older movies and they just look better compressed smaller. The method I use for zoom is different than anyone else and I have my ceiling mounted projector on an inclined slide and can actually move the projector to zoom. In doing this when I move smaller for TV I get a smaller image and the FL go up, so a win/win. Full size my seating distance is adjusted to be scope or IMAX and both of those would be lights out anyway and some of the best mastered more modern movies fully immersive.
I tried to craft my room to be many things as in a full media room. I have a laptop input into the system and we even show family slide shows and home movies from many years ago 8mm or VHS converted, and newer stuff from the age of iPhones. Youtube even has a lot of interesting poor vintage video that contains great audio still. My first theater was just that and it got used here and there for movies. This time around I figured the room has the best sound and the best seating why not make it the everything room.
Hope that explains a little why I like gray. Sadly gray is almost gone because with 4k HDR and people wanting some huge size screens they don’t have lumens to spare as the HDR highlights they want very bright. The white screens 1.3 etc are just getting them there. I’m old school I guess and like the film-like quality of a very dark space and then classic FL specs.