Recommendation for living room setup with skylight - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 5 Old 05-26-2016, 11:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Recommendation for living room setup with skylight

I'm looking to replace my current living room projector with something that can provide and overall better picture while handling the abundant ambient light my room has. I'm currently using a Viewsonic PRO8200 and find that the image is pretty much completely washed out during the day.

My screen situation is 128" painted with a Silverfire 5.0 mix. Its aspect ratio is 16:10 (built when I was using a different projector than the Viewsonic) so there's a little bit of unused vertical space. Here's a shot of my screen and room when being lit by the afternoon sun: image

I've been doing a little research and am really intrigued by the Epson 1985wu (similar to the Home Cinema 1440). Its nearly 5000 lumens make it seem like it should be able to overcome the daylight significantly better than my Viewsonic, but I'm concerned about night time viewing and the lack of black / shadow details that something so bright will provide. Given that this is in my living room, which is directly connected to the kitchen, there will never be a time where there is 100% (or even 75%) darkness so blacks are never going to be truly black anyway.

I'm obviously torn with the direction to go with this purchase as evidenced by me arguing with myself above. Is the Epson capable of providing a rich and deep image in lowish ambient light against a high gain screen, or will the blacks and darker colors always appear to be a bit washed out? Is there another alternative that can handle my high daytime light and provide an excellent movie quality picture in the evening?

Any help and/or guidance is very much appreciated!
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post #2 of 5 Old 05-26-2016, 12:23 PM
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Hi...I'll wade in on this one, as we have almost the exact problem you have. The only place we could put our projector is a room with a skylight directly over the screen (photo attached). We have an Epson Powerlight HC3020 home cinema projector with 2300 lumens of light output. The projector you mentioned is actually NOT a home theatre projector, but a data projector, and as such, may be brighter, but the contrast shown in the specs is not good enough for video- you'll really notice it in a dark room. You might want to take a look at an Epson 5030UB instead. It's listed as a 2400 lumen projector, but also has a 600,000 :1 contrast ratio. It will have a much faster refresh rate than most data projectors as well. I don't think you'll be happy with a data projector for use with video. Data projectors just don't need that kind of refresh rate.

We had to handle our daytime viewing issues by picking up a skylight blind. These are available at most big box home centres like Home Depot or Lowes. Hunter Douglas makes them as well.

We can watch ours all day long when the blind is closed. Just my two cents....
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post #3 of 5 Old 05-26-2016, 01:35 PM
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Art Feierman at tested a 1440 in his living room in the middle of the day with light coming through the windows and was favorably impressed with the image it was able to produce. At its lowest brightness settings the 1440 also produced a reasonable image at night, though not up to the standards of similarly priced dedicated home theater projectors.

In case you hadn't seen it, one person on AVS Forum actually compared a 1440 and 1985WU and was totally surprised that the business model (1985WU) outperformed the crossover home/business model (1440) for home use. Here's a link to that post.
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post #4 of 5 Old 05-28-2016, 12:16 PM
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Not being sarcastic here, but have you noticed how inexpensive 75" and 80" 4K LED flatscreens are these days.
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post #5 of 5 Old 05-29-2016, 02:12 PM
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Have you looked into ambient light rejecting screens?

Have you looked into ambient light rejecting screens? I have not experienced one myself but the images and videos available on the net and even this very website are very promising. Have a look in these subforums to see what some members are able to accomplish:

Since you already have a painted screen you may be interested in repainting your screen to maximize it's ALR capabilities with either a premixed or diy mix paint. If I were you I would try out one of these solutions to see how much an improvement if any you could get with the screen first and then swapping out the projector.

My theater room is a batcave and I only started looking at ALR solutions for a friend of mine in a similar situation as you and I have been really impressed with some of the results that some people are getting. It makes me want to try it out in my family room with large sliding glass doors and multiple skylights but I think I will likely have very daunting WAF issues if I go that route.
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