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Hello all home theater enthusiasts. I have a brief question and would welcome input from those with more experience.


I have a BARCO 1208 projector which is great and I'm using it to front project now. I'm planning on extending my home and moving the home theater to a better room designed for the application. I can front or rear project and I'm curious to know which gives the brightest, richest movie experience front or rear projection. If I rear project, I plan to mount the projector on the wall of the first floor and project down via a surface mirror to the back of the screen.


Has anyone tried this with good results ?
 

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I think you'll find front projection is going to the best route to go (or maintain, I should say). Rear projection via a mirror can create optical issues (especially with a short throw lense), and rear projection screens are VERY expensive if done properly. I'm not an expert, but I looked at doing a non-mirror (straight shot) rear projection setup for my Sony G90 and back off due to the costs.
 

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rodoz6 -


There are significant pros & cons for either configuration. We've had several front and rear home theater setups and are currently in the middle of installing a 90" StewartFilm Opta90 rear screen into our den wall with a very modded BarcoGraphics 801s Retro behind it


Briefly, though front screen projection is more theater-like, and overall more preferable, all ambient sources of light have to be significantly controlled (extinguished or very dimmed). Even with your big bright monster of a CRT unit, this will be true. Generally, this does not bother me, but we discovered that my wife tends to fall asleep in a darkened room (even during the movie, "Twister" at >1000 watts!).


However, while a good rear projection setup does not require anything near the lighting control of FP, and is much quieter, it isn't quite as 'theater-ish'. Besides requiring a bit of space behind the screen, the biggest drawback for many is the expense of a good rear screen. The diffusion type is not as expensive, but the lenticular-fresnel are much brighter and sharper. The contrast level and image depth tend to be heightened as well. People will complain about off-axis viewing of rear screen setups, but that's typically with either a diffusion or low-end l/f screen.


A screen such as the Opta90 has a very wide viewing cone and produces a bright image. BUT, new it goes for nearly $7000! Of course, we did not buy it new but it was still expensive, and is only 6 feet wide :( and 8-foot widths are double that price when new. Corporations are the more likely customers of these.


PM me if you want more info on RP screens and the links I've accumulated on the subject.


-Chris
 

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Yep, the cost forced me to reconsider my original approach--I was looking at $11K+ for a great (read, not crappy) rear projection screen. Plus, I would have lost the ability to put my center channel behind the screen as desired. Of course, due to high ceilings, I have a HUGE projector mount setup to place my 250 lbs. Sony at the correct height--definitely something I'd rather not have in the room. D'oh!
 
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