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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So here is the deal....I want to make a quick and easy backyard theater on a budget. This projector will be used during the evening hours when it is darker out. The main uses will be night sport games, and kids movies. I have speakers on the side of my garage, and plan on using a white sheet for the screen that will be easily taken down when not in use.


I am thinking a pocket projector would be a great way to get a big screen outside without a lot of wires. Long bulb life would be a huge plus too.


My question to you guys is, what do you think? Good idea? Bad Idea? Stay away from these things? Get one now? Which one to get?


Thanks!
 

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I have one of the older pocket projectors (Mits PK20) and there are two issues: it's not very bright - and the optics really only max out at around a 72" image (supposed to be 60", but you can stretch it out bigger to 72 before it gets too out of focus). I would think you want a cheap light canon, not a cheap flashlight



You'd be paying for the hyper-portability that you don't really need for this application. I think half the fun of the outdoor theater is that you can go ridiculously big - so unless current generation LED PJs are radically different than mine, not really what you want.... although mine has a battery and could be used on the side of a minivan while camping.. that's something :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I should really stress....the long battery life is what appeals to me. It will mostly be used for kids movies at night when the adults are by the fire pit. With that said, any change in opinion?
 

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Nope, the campfire glare might overwhelm the image to the point of unwatchable. Now that's for the 10-20lumen variety, the 100-150lumen versions, well....
 

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My battery experience has been kinda poor. Again, my model is now a couple years old, but the battery has only been used 7-9 cycles, and I would basically say it no longer holds a charge. I can't say this precisely because I only ever think to charge it for like 2h before I need it, but then it starts whining about low battery after like 10min of use so I'm assuming it's gonzo. You're going to need AC power for sound and the video source anyway, right?
 

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Those little LED projectors sure are intriguing, eh?


One practical question: how do you plan to connect it? I don't have any real experience with any of the, but the reviews I've seen show pretty limited connections on most of them. Just make sure this isn't a problem.
 

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If you're on a budget, you can try the AAXA P1 pico projector. It's $239...

http://www.aaxatech.com/products/kp1..._projector.htm


It's only 12 lumens so I don't know if you can realistically expect anything more than say 30-40". In terms of campfire, I find that the campfire lighting doesn't interfere with the projector as much as sunlight, I usually shoot for a ~30-40" size image outdoors. Battery life is so so, I get 60 minutes, I just ended up rigging up an RC car battery (5V) and running that I get 5 hours now which is way more than enough... For sound I picked up the tweaquer portable speakers which is more than adequate. For input I usually just use my Zune.


The image quality is pretty good, but I mainly bought it because the unit is tiny. If you can afford to go a bit larger there's brighter units on the market like the Benq that has a lot larger case.

 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ok....connections will be composite from a dvd player, I understand this is the one of the only connections that these pocket projectors have. Also, as far as power goes, I planned on running a extension cord to it for power.....I really have to stick to a cheapo budget too, 200-300 bucks.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FHT123 /forum/post/16997378


Ok....connections will be composite from a dvd player, I understand this is the one of the only connections that these pocket projectors have. Also, as far as power goes, I planned on running a extension cord to it for power.....I really have to stick to a cheapo budget too, 200-300 bucks.

This is a good unit for a DVD / composite connections for $200-$300. If size doesn't matter you can probably get a cheapo LCD one for around there, but a few bulbs later you'll probably wish you had an LED one. Flip side is the cheapo LCD one will probably be MUCH brighter.


I use this for in the dark in the bedroom hooked up to the cable converter box sometimes, it works well for regular TV - just gotta keep it in the dark and a decent size image 40-50" is cool....
 

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I do something similar on my driveway (with rear projection from INSIDE my garage--protected from the elements), and I use the same projector as in my home theater (Optoma HD 65). My point here is there's no substitute for lumens: it's not as dark outside (in the moonlight) as you think, and brighter is better.
 

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Check the DIY screen section for your best bet on watchable mediums:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forum...ysprune=&f=110


I just hosted a back-yard-movie-night but the system was definitely not budget (I borrowed projector from work - BenQ DLP; powered DJ speakers/equip from a friend; Oppo player).


The screen was not expensive at all though - I bought 3 yards of curtain backing (blackout cloth) purchased from a local fabric joint at $14/yd. I hung it on the fence that lines my back yard using a pair of 1/2" metal rods (hems sewn top and bottom in the cloth to run the rods through). Provides space for a 110" 16:9 screen (54" is max width for that variety of cloth, unfortunately). Still, Empire looked and sounded amazing!


Good luck!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by gkanders /forum/post/17197123


Stanton, what do you use for a screen? Are you happy with it?

I use (opaque) clear plastic that painters use as a dropcloth. It's cheap and can be found at any Home Depot, etc. If you don't crease (or tear) it too bad, it should last many viewings. Remember, I project the movie from BEHIND the screen (also known as REAR projection).


Here's a link to a story I wrote about it; I've since upgraded my projector to the HD65.
http://www.audioholics.com/news/edit...-movie-theater
 

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I found an LP250 off e-bay for under $100. and watched a few preseason games in my drive. I did the same thing using the rear projection mode. I had to wait till just before halftime before it was dark enough here for it to be at a decent brightness.


I just used 2 twin size sheets, one white one black and i had my sister sew them both together length wise. The black i put near the bottom and sit the projector on the floor. The black softens the hot spot, if i had doubled the black sheet when it was stiched together it might of blacked out the hot spot completly. $4. for each sheet, a few tacks and it was up in no time.


I put the speakers on the inside wich kept it tight.


What sucks is the chiefs dont have any night games this year they did so bad last year so ill have to wait to use it again. The first 4 preseason games were kinda fun though.


I forgot what the demensions of my garage were but the twin sheets filled almost the full length perfectly and then i moved it up on the door a little so there was plenty of black near the bottom.


 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stanton /forum/post/17202865


I use (opaque) clear plastic that painters use as a dropcloth. It's cheap and can be found at any Home Depot, etc. If you don't crease (or tear) it too bad, it should last many viewings. Remember, I project the movie from BEHIND the screen (also known as REAR projection).

I wouldn't use opaque- it hotspots too much. Use White shower curtains instead


Opaque (aka frosted)

With flash



Without flash



White Front



White Rear




Victor
 
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