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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Like many people, I am trying to find a cheap screen surface that will give me improved black level without hitting colours or brightness. So I decided to try out a 'Firehawk Killer' as mentioned in Tryg's thread with my InFocus X1.


I painted half a screen with Dulux 474 light grey paint and the other with Penetrol Anti-Corrosion Aluminium paint, or Al for short.


You can view screen shots here:

http://www.doddsy.net/steve6_022.htm


Unfortunately my camera crapped out before I could take daylight shots to show what the screen looks like in the flesh. I'll try again after it has had time to sulk for a bit. Like mosty digi cameras, it makes the blacks and colours look deeper than they are, but you will get an idea of comparables.


First the positives. Al does indeed greatly increase brightness. Even more than a Da-Lite Highpower. And it doesn't appear to coompletely wipe out the black level. I would say that the blacks are at about the same level as a plain white screen. It makes it possible to watch sport during the day with blinds drawn. And colours do pop off the screen.


However, the amount of gain depends on where you are sitting, and the angle of your projector. Mine is mounted above my head on a shalef, and due to my odd room, hits the screen at a slight angle away from me. My wall isn't completely flat so this also created darker and lighter areas.


However, I'm not sure that these colours were completely natural. There is also too much gain in some areas as bright whites tended to blow out and allow you to see the screen texture and alloyness.


Overall, the plain grey screen had significantly deeper blacks, and what I thought was a more natural and filmic feel to it.


Of course, that was one alluminium paint, and the results were sufficiently intriguing that I have another one drying on top as I type. A smoother, proper surface would also help I think. I painted it straight onto the wall, so maybe a dark undercoat would help the blacks as well.


Anyway, it was an interesting experiment and oen I'll continue with.


Steve
 

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Thanks for sharing your results.

I am considering an X1, and I have already built a "temp" screen with nothing more than blackout cloth around a frame. I just want make sure I order from a place that will let me return or upgrade it if I see too many rainbows.


2 questions:


How large an image were you projecting in your screenshots?


If you ever see any rainbow affects, did you happen to notice if they were any less pronounced on the "grey" screen - and perhaps more noticeable on the brighter aluminum screen?


Thanks in advance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The screen is 84 inches wide.


If I try hard enough I can see rainbows, but much less than the projectors we all loved 2 years ago, (LT100,LT150 etc). Rainbows (IMHO) are one the the dumbest beatups in HT.


So does a grey screen help?


Perhaps, but there isn't much help needed.


Steve
 

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Nice work Steve.


I compared the High Heat silver to the Firehawk, and the Aluminum to the Silver Star.


If you want quick and easy the High Heat Silver is very quick drying and gives a nice finish from a standard rattle can. It's very similar to the firehawk. Its probably about 1.5 gain
 

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Could you not adjust the brightness and contrast to bring the Aluminum under control? The picture on the bottom looks to me to be much sharper than the top! Am I wrong?


Wes
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The image was calibrated for the whitish wall I was using. No doubt calibrating for either the grey or silver would improve the picture for both.


I just wanted to show a comparison.


However, the playing with the brightness and contrast that I did couldn't bring the black levels for Al down to the levels of the grey screen. You probably could get rid of some of the white flare with contrast adjustments. The Al screen actually had higher contrast because the whites were so bright.


This might make it seem sharper.


I suspect it depends on your priorities. If you want an image with maximum punch and OK blacks, the alloy painst might be great.


Even though I have now painted over the entuire screen with a grey paint, I'll keep experimenting on the side with silverred paints just in case there is a magic formula.


Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The image was calibrated for the whitish wall I was using. No doubt calibrating for either the grey or silver would improve the picture for both.


I just wanted to show a comparison.


However, the playing with the brightness and contrast that I did couldn't bring the black levels for Al down to the levels of the grey screen. You probably could get rid of some of the white flare with contrast adjustments. The Al screen actually had higher contrast because the whites were so bright.


This might make it seem sharper.


I suspect it depends on your priorities. If you want an image with maximum punch and OK blacks, the alloy painst might be great.


Even though I have now painted over the entuire screen with a grey paint, I'll keep experimenting on the side with silvered paints just in case there is a magic formula.


Steve
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The paint I used was rolled on. There are many types of aluminium/silver paint. The question is which, if any, is best for a screen.


Steve
 

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Just somemore info. A good year ago I played around with some Behr paint. I'd put different swatches against my Grayhawk.(I have a bit of a light canon, a 13-HD) The one that "disappeared " 98% of the time was "silver stag- #3A45-3". The whites were a little bit darker and the blacks were a bit lighter, but all the colors blended right in. You definately pay for that last 10-15% in video and audio!!
 
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