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Yes, it is possible to use a wall as a screen, if light in the room can be controlled. Special paint is not necessary - flat white latex, such as Behr ultra white works well. If the wall is textured, it will look better if you apply a thin coat of drywall compound and sand it smooth before painting. A black velveteen frame will help a lot, too. If you are using an lcd or dlp projector, you may get better results using a light gray paint.


In my experience, a carefully painted flat surface will give you 90%+ of the performance of most commercial screens!
 

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I did a rectangle using Behr Antique Pewter (matte latex base) to get good blacks with my SE-13HD. I found the border distracting, and ended up painting the entire wall. I sanded and patched the surface of my textured wall and used a fine sponge foam roller to get a smooth surface. I tried some other 1/4" nap rollers and ended up with streaks. Now it looks real good after painting very carefully with strokes in one direction only. I've compared it with some samples of Stewart screen material, and like my painted wall better.
 

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A third positive vote for painted walls.


3 tips from me:


1 - If your wall is smooth, use a flat white primer (I've found that Drywall sealing paint works well), then roll on Behr Premium Ultra White (Flat) - tinted to a grey. I suggest you try the standard "Grey Tropics" color.


2 - if you wall is not smooth, you can use drywall compound - but be careful. If you have no experiance in applying and sanding this, you can make a real mess. There can be a lot of dust involved, and any mistake you make will leap out at you as soon as you apply the primer. An alternative is to find 1/4" drywall from home depot (call around, not every store carries it), and screw it directly to the existing wall - then paint as in tip 1. I've done it that way, and I'm very happy with the results.


3. Buy some Baseboard or Door casing, and frame your screen with it (Paint it flat back before nailing it up).


Kevin
 

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I am most happy with my painted wall screen. I have put various swatches of screen material (gain 1.0) up against it for comparison and frankly could see no improvement.
 

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For anyone attempting this and wanting to use a gray rather than flat white paint, I suggest getting the test strips such as Behr provides to tape to the wall to see how the blacks look. That's how I ended up with Antique Pewter. Put up a 0 IRE test pattern and tape the test strips on a black surface, straddling the screen area and just outside of the screen area. That's going to show you how black it will be.


When watching a movie, you'll be comparing the blacks on the screen against the darkness surrounding the screen. With an LCD PJ, it's pretty critical, IMHO, to get compromise on brightness to get a decent black level.


FWIW, I found that the brightness of an LCD on a pure white screen gave me eyestrain, and that a darker screen solved both problems.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I've decided to go with a separate screen rather than a wall screen. My walls are old plaster and very wavy, not straight or smooth. Mounting a panel of drywall would probably be too permanent. So I am going with hanging a framed cloth screen from the ceiling.


I would still love all your input on this new design. There is a thread here discussing it. Thanks!
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...hreadid=196964
 

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I'm tempted to try this for my screen. I've got a nice flat wall where my screen would go, so if I can get a good image from a gray painted wall, why spend $1000-$1500 for a Stewart?


Does anyone think painting it with Gesso instead of just paint would be a good idea, like others have done for DIY screens?
 

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Here are pictures of sheetrock screens:

My Dad has a Dalite 52x92 pulldown and recently purchased a 58x104 Dalite permanent mount.

He told me I need to get a real screen.

I wanted to say, "You are crazy!".


Me - pcdoctor

http://myhometheater.tripod.com/screen.jpg

http://myhometheater.tripod.com/screen2.jpg


You will have to cut and paste these images in your browser.



Member Torre

http://www.armorform.com/page25.html

http://www.armorform.com/screen.jpg


Thanks to member Torre the guy that built my sheetrock screen used his instructions.

I would have kicked myself if I had found Torre's diy sheetrock screen link after I had purchased a Dalite 58x104 permanent mount screen.



Member Vern

http://webpages.charter.net/tvdias/photos.html
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Darrel Johansen
I did a rectangle using Behr Antique Pewter (matte latex base) to get good blacks with my SE-13HD. I found the border distracting, and ended up painting the entire wall. I sanded and patched the surface of my textured wall and used a fine sponge foam roller to get a smooth surface. I tried some other 1/4" nap rollers and ended up with streaks. Now it looks real good after painting very carefully with strokes in one direction only. I've compared it with some samples of Stewart screen material, and like my painted wall better.
I took a look at a sample of the Behr Antique Pewter and it seemed very dark. I will be using a DLP PJ and I wonder if it will be too dark. Any thoughts?
 

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Antique Pewter may well be a little too dark for a DLP, which has blacker blacks than an LCD. For my SE-13HD, it was perfect. Again, the best test is to get some color strips and actually tape them up on the wall to see how good your black levels will be. You'll get brighter white levels with lighter gray, obviously, so you don't want to go too far in either direction for a good compromise.
 

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Food for Thought!


When selecting your color try the Martha Stewart line of paints (I've seen at Grate Indoors or look on-line for dealers)their's much more colors to choose from. Mabe this will hope you get just that right shade of gray and still be a factory mix making for easier touch ups down the road.


ddog!
 

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I think the important thing is just getting the right amount of lampblack. You don't want any other colors in the paint unless you intentionally want to tweak the color balance. Using the Behr test strips, you can always ask them to mix an "in-between" color that uses a proportion of lampblack that is somewhere between two standard colors of gray.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I agree, the only colors in the mix should ideally be just white and black. Anyone know which Behr or Glidden gray paints have only white and black, not tweaked with other colors? What's the most neutral gray color?
 
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