Need help. OVERWHELMED - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 24 Old 05-05-2019, 07:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Need help. OVERWHELMED

I’ve been attempting to read about which projector is right for me. The more I read. The more I’m confused. My media room will be 12ft wide and 15 ft long. The projector will be 9.5-10 ft from the wall. Projector will be used for 60% streaming, 30% gaming, and 10% dvd movies. There is a very small amount of ambient light. Budget will be 1000-1500. Can you guys please give me insight on some projectors to read up on? I have read about the optoma uhd60, not sold on it yet, but not sure if it would be too much, or too less for my needs. And I’m certainly open to other recommendations. Thank you
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post #2 of 24 Old 05-05-2019, 07:35 AM
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Benq 3350, otherwise you'd have to look at refurbished or used to match that price range imo
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post #3 of 24 Old 05-05-2019, 08:02 AM
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It depends on exact throw distance and screen size. Each projector model has a slightly different throw range so that it can only produce a specific range of image sizes from any given throw distance. The exact measurement in feet and inches of the front of the projector lens to the screen is the throw distance. If you're sure your projector's lens will be 9.5' or 10' from the screen then you need to specify what size screen you plan to have at that distance from the projector to determine which projector models are capable of throwing that specific image size from that specific distance.

If you're not exactly sure of what specific screen size you want right now then another way to do it is to settle on a range of potential screen sizes you might want and pick a projector with a zoom lens that can cover that whole range of image sizes from your specific throw distance. Then buy the projector, set it up and view a variety of content projected on the wall at different zoom settings and image sizes. When you find the optimum image size for your personal preferences from your viewing distance (eyes to screen) measure the image diagonal and order a screen of that specific size.

Generally speaking, with video projection you want an image big enough to feel immersive and cinematic but small enough that it doesn't cause eyestrain. That varies from individual to individual so what someone else recommends works for them may or may not work for you.
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post #4 of 24 Old 05-05-2019, 10:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Dave, thanks for your reply. I’ve done some measuring. My throw will be 13 ft. Screen will be 10 ft in width. Hope this helps
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post #5 of 24 Old 05-05-2019, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by ahogue142 View Post
Dave, thanks for your reply. I’ve done some measuring. My throw will be 13 ft. Screen will be 10 ft in width. Hope this helps

I have the UHD60 mounted 13 feet back from the screen and am able to throw a 110" 16x9 image up on screen, so it will most likely work for you in terms of throw distance (if you feel like 110" is sufficient for your needs). The projector itself has a beautiful image and is also decent for gaming. If you buy refurbished you can get it for a really good price. Other projectors to look into would be the BenQ HT3550 for 1,500 or perhaps the TK800 for 1,100.
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post #6 of 24 Old 05-05-2019, 03:56 PM
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Dave, thanks for your reply. I’ve done some measuring. My throw will be 13 ft. Screen will be 10 ft in width. Hope this helps
10 ft. wide, you sure?

That means you are going for a 137" 16:9?
I'll assume a 135" 16:9.

So you will need the slightly shorter throw ability similar to the ht3550 offers which may limit your choices.
The Optoma will probably not work if you want these larger screen sizes.

Remember also, with most of these projectors you are going to need 1' to 2' of extra space behind the throw (if the wall is right there, could cause issues),
because the throw is the lens to the screen (and doesn't include the projector depth).

The one drawback for you on the ht3550 might be the 50-60ms lag, if you care.
That's low enough for most gaming, but if you are a twitch FPS player, then probably not.

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post #7 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 04:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Coder, the set up I have, I have flexibility in some of the numbers. I can put the projector (throw) anywhere from 12ft to 15 ft. The wall I’m projecting on has a maximum width of 12 ft, so I would like to keep screen width at 10 ft. I’ll post pics this afternoon.
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post #8 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 08:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Here’s a pic. Hope this helps. 9 ft ceilings
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post #9 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 09:15 AM
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Here’s a pic. Hope this helps. 9 ft ceilings


Those close side walls are going to be rough. You might want to consider paint or even hanging some black drapes or fabric on the side walls.

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post #10 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 10:29 AM
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That room is sold enough. It needs a coat of dark paint on the walls and ceiling to make it truly theater ready, but otherwise, not a bad start.

Not sure what you are doing for audio in the room and what your considerations are there.

The sconces are a pretty thing, but completely unusable during front projection as their light falls squarely on the screen, so you will need to consider lighting as an important factor of your setup.

Screen size is a function of viewing distance and typical screen size is 10" to 12" of image diagonal for each foot of viewing distance. So, if you are seated at 10', then a 100" to 120" diagonal 16:9 image is common. Larger or smaller is personal preference.

Measurements must be exact on things like screen size and what you actually decide to use for a screen size.

How serious are you about gaming? The 4K DLP projectors seems to have a hang up with fast processing. They just can't reduce the lag to under 80ms, which may be problematic to serious gamers, but not so much for more causal users. If you consider yourself really serious, you may have to opt out of a 4K projector in favor of a 1080p model which operates better.

With a 133" image diagonal (common size) the BenQ HT3550 can hit it with the lens to screen distance between 10'11" to 14'3", which seems pretty much ideal for your setup.
https://www.projectorcentral.com/Ben...ulator-pro.htm

I really like the potential here. Not sure what you are doing for audio. Not sure where you are putting your electronics (not at the front of the room!!!) but the room looks like a good place to watch some movies.

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post #11 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 10:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Definitely going to throw some dark paint on there. It’s on the to do list. Sconces are on a dimmer. Mainly there to enjoy shop talk with buddies while a ball game is on and we are halfway paying attention. Also, I will play Xbox some. As far as audio goes I have a 3 year old Onkyo 5.1 system. I’ve hardwired my surround sound. Center speaker will be in the front at the bottom. Everything else (subwoofer, av receiver, Xbox, etc.) will be located on the wall, next to the door, to your left in that pic. The door is just out of screen shot.
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post #12 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 10:58 AM
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I would get your projector first before committing to a screen size so you can experiment with different sizes in the space. I like a very large image myself but a 120" wide 16:9 viewed from 10-11' away is going to be bigger than a lot of people would enjoy. Do you like sitting near the front row at the movie theater?
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post #13 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 11:02 AM
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Definitely going to throw some dark paint on there. It’s on the to do list.
Sounds great!


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Sconces are on a dimmer. Mainly there to enjoy shop talk with buddies while a ball game is on and we are halfway paying attention. Also, I will play Xbox some.
No.

Sconces cast light DIRECTLY on the screen. They tremendously degrade image quality, even at the dimmest setting, which should be so low to be unusable, but will devastate contrast ratios. Sconces are strictly 'art'. They are for entering and exiting the room, but never should be used while a projector is in use.
If you are looking for lighting to use while the guys are hanging out, you will want to add task lighting. This is lighting back towards the seating area that is VERY directional. That is, pointed at the seating area. It can actually be VERY bright! The main thing about task lighting is that it puts light where you want to see, without putting lighting where you don't want it. In this case, that's on the screen and it's a fairly easy thing to avoid.

People get lighting wrong, then they continue to get lighting wrong. You can pick up a lamp with spotlights on it, on a dimmer, for not a lot of cash, or you can look into adding ceiling track lighting or recessed lighting on a dimmer as well. But, sconces are never the proper light to use while the movie is playing.

See: http://www.avintegrated.com/lighting.html for an example using about a 500 (or so) lumen projector from years ago.

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As far as audio goes I have a 3 year old Onkyo 5.1 system. I’ve hardwired my surround sound. Center speaker will be in the front at the bottom. Everything else (subwoofer, av receiver, Xbox, etc.) will be located on the wall, next to the door, to your left in that pic. The door is just out of screen shot.
Sounds like a plan. Remember that this projector is a 4K UHD model, not sure if you ran conduit to the projector location and that you ensured that any cabling in place to the projector is 18Gb/s UHD certified. Remember, that cable didn't exist a few years ago, and it won't be useful in 10 years from today. So, it must be replaced at some point.

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post #14 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 11:10 AM
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You might want to consider in-wall speakers and an acoustically transparent screen since the screen will take up so much of the front wall. Silver Ticket makes some very reasonably priced AT screens and their build quality is very solid for the price.

Also, if your AVR is not 4K capable, you're either going to have to consider replacing it, using external HDMI switching with HDMI audio extraction, or just sticking with 1080p. If you go with the latter, I'd consider the Epson 3x00 series (3000, 3100, 3500, 3600, 3700) for their high brightness, solid black levels (better than most any DLP), and installation flexibility (lots of zoom and lens shift available). As for 1080p vs 4K, I often regret replacing my Epson 3000 with what I consider a lesser quality 4K projector (BenQ TK800), even though the Benq was a freebie review sample. I'd rather have the black levels of the 3000 back over the added resolution of 4K, and I wouldn't have had to upgrade my AVR to one that's 4K capable either... and the 3100/3700 have even better blacks than the 3000 did. 4K projectors in the ~$1k range are improving but I don't think they're there yet in terms of one aspect key to cinema-like enjoyment... black levels.

IMHO, a refurb Epson 3100 ($799), Silver Ticket 135" 16:9 AT screen ($519) and 2 pairs of Bic Formula FH8-W ($372) would stretch your total budget but would address everything I see with your room and current equipment and I don't think the lack of 4K would leave you pining for more either. You could probably come in under $1500 if you scour eBay for the Bic in-walls or go with something a little less expensive that will still likely be an improvement over your Onkyo HTIB speakers.

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I’m more of a middle of the theater guy. But I’m not very picky either. This is without a doubt completely new territory for me. The 10 ft screen width is the max I would want to go based on the space available. But I may get it set up and think that’s way too big. I just don’t have any experience with this. I’ve never even been in anything I would call a home theater. So I am about as dumb as dumb can be on this. Which unit do you suggest?? The ht3550 has come highly recommended thus far
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post #16 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
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AV, great points on the lighting. I will certainly check that out.
The cable has been run and is UHD certified.
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post #17 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 11:21 AM
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That blank painted wall is perfect for experimenting with image size before ordering a screen. The image won't be perfect if there are any irregularities in the wall surface but you don't need a perfect surface if just experimenting with image size. Pick a projector with a throw range that allows an image from 7' to 10' wide. That would cover you for a 16:9 aspect ratio screen ranging from 100" to 135" diagonal, which are commonly available screen sizes along with 110" and 120". Screen size/viewing distance is a personal preference. Don't let someone else talk you into impulse buying a screen size that might not work for your personal preference. Let your own eyes tell you what image size is right for you.

Experimenting on the wall with sconce lights on and off will also demonstrate to you what @AV_Integrated has been telling you about room lighting. Video projection is much more seriously impacted than a TV by any light that hits the screen. Your own eyes will quickly verify that for you.
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post #18 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 11:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Stephen, you gave me some homework to read up on and several ideas to go from. Thank you.
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post #19 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 02:34 PM
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It is way to late for what I’m about to suggest. But if that room footprint were mine I would be projecting 90 degrees to the longer wall and use a shorter throw or a short throw projector as I suggested in your other thread. One long row of seats I could see you seating 5 or 6 easily. I would have set it up to handle IMAX sizing and then room to pull back the immersion to suit. I personally wouldn’t like squeezing in beside the seating and having my back to the entry to the room. I know it is way to late in the process to even conceder that now.

As to the sconces if you are going to leave them and plan on using them for controlled ambient on dimmers. Take the globes off and black out the side facing the screen on the inside with paint or glue in black felt or something.

I was correct you are getting a lot more responses here.

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post #20 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 03:31 PM
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It is way to late for what I’m about to suggest. But if that room footprint were mine I would be projecting 90 degrees to the longer wall and use a shorter throw or a short throw projector as I suggested in your other thread. One long row of seats I could see you seating 5 or 6 easily. I would have set it up to handle IMAX sizing and then room to pull back the immersion to suit. I personally wouldn’t like squeezing in beside the seating and having my back to the entry to the room. I know it is way to late in the process to even conceder that now.

As to the sconces if you are going to leave them and plan on using them for controlled ambient on dimmers. Take the globes off and black out the side facing the screen on the inside with paint or glue in black felt or something.

I was correct you are getting a lot more responses here.

Indeed.
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post #21 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 04:00 PM
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As to the sconces if you are going to leave them and plan on using them for controlled ambient on dimmers. Take the globes off and black out the side facing the screen on the inside with paint or glue in black felt or something.
Even just frosting the side of the globe that's facing the screen will help a lot (I did similar to half of an overhead light dome in my theater). You could also rattle-can one side of an LED bulb white to get the same blocking without killing the aesthetic of the lights.

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post #22 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 06:37 PM
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I’ve been attempting to read about which projector is right for me. The more I read. The more I’m confused. My media room will be 12ft wide and 15 ft long. The projector will be 9.5-10 ft from the wall. Projector will be used for 60% streaming, 30% gaming, and 10% dvd movies. There is a very small amount of ambient light. Budget will be 1000-1500. Can you guys please give me insight on some projectors to read up on? I have read about the optoma uhd60, not sold on it yet, but not sure if it would be too much, or too less for my needs. And I’m certainly open to other recommendations. Thank you
Here is what I would do...

At your budget, you need to be conservative on the cost of the screen.
For the better and punchier image, I would personally spend the money on treating the front 1/4 to 1/2 of the room with Triple Black Velvet - $180 from Amazon.com.
Even if you paint the side walls, a room with those dimensions is going to reflect some light back onto the screen hurting the picture, especially with lights on.
The black velvet treatment to the first 1/4th of the room will help the picture maintain contrast when you are using lighting that is pointing away from the screen.

I would say there are 2 quick and easy ways to do this for the screen in your budget:

1) For a smaller screen up to 106", the Cheapest way = Blackout Cloth ($25 Roclon from Ebay). Tack it directly to the wall. Cover it with black velvet panels (use foamcore or cardboard or just staple/tack directly to wall). You can also buy Carl's Blackout Cloth in larger sizes, but if spending that kind of money the Carl's Ultrawhite is a better buy at $100+ or so and offers larger sizes as well. You could also look at other non-stretch materials that come as gray screens or whatever, but they are usually expensive enough to where it might not be worth it, at that point just buy a Silver Ticket screen.

The problem is, if you spend $250+ on a screen with no black velvet treatment, well the cheaper screen with the black velvet treatment is going to blow it away looks-wise because of the better contrast in the room.

2) Get the Silver Ticket AT screen and put speakers in the wall or behind the screen. I personally would not do this unless AUDIO is your main concern, because it's always a lot more trouble to setup and harder for a person to envision the final result that has never done it before. Besides your blowing half or more of your budget on AUDIO here.

This is just my opinion, and it depends how big of speakers you want to use, but sounds like you are on a budget, so speakers probably bookshelf I am guessing.
I'd probably just mount Sony Core bookshelf speakers (or any bookshelf) on the walls using $20 mounting brackets from Amazon. Use cheaper speakers for the surrounds and rear (like really cheap IMO - Monoprice or Daytons). Buy bigger or better speakers later, or just use your existing speakers even if you want to, but I'd at least replace the 2 fronts with some better bookshelf speakers.

After tacking blackout cloth ($25) or Carl's Ultrawhite ($120) to the wall directly, the screen borders are created by using the Triple Black Velvet.
It's not hard to do to make it look professional, as good as any screen you buy and mount. It's actually fairly easy really, just have to be careful when tacking and use 2 people.
Also, if you tack a screen, you have to let it settle and re-position a few tacks for the first 1-2 weeks (and before applying the velvet borders works best).
I know this way works fine because I have done it several times.

Then spend the remaining on the projector.

That's just how I would do it, not saying it's the absolute only way, you might not like the aesthetics or extra work that black velvet requires.
However, it definitely improves the picture a lot more than painting will, and it is easier than painting IMO.

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post #23 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 10:27 PM
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If you don't put black velvet on the ceiling between the screen and the projector, then lighting won't be a problem because there will be so much light reflected off for the screen on to the ceiling to illuminate the room. Don't ask me how I know. You can also buy a 2in wide roll of sticky back black velvet tape to use for the border on your screen. Good luck with your project.

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post #24 of 24 Old 05-06-2019, 10:31 PM
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If you don't put black velvet on the ceiling between the screen and the projector, then lighting won't be a problem because there will be so much light reflected off for the screen on to the ceiling to illuminate the room. Don't ask me how I know. You can also buy a 2in wide roll of sticky back black velvet tape to use for the border on your screen. Good luck with your project.
Yah, my idea was for him to buy one bolt of the Triple Black Velvet, and cover as much of the first few feet as he can (ceiling, side walls, and the front wall), he should be able to do a bit less than half the room I'd think with one bolt.

The best way to make the screen border when doing Black Velvet treatments is using the foamboard and cardboard and simply attaching the velvet to that, and then that to the wall.
Could also use wood or any other material really. The black velvet tape is ok if using alone, but it will stick out a bit from the other velvet. I prefer the borderless look.

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