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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good afternoon,


I respect the knowledge and expertise based on the reading I've done here lately. I am hoping for a bit of feedback on my situation.


I have just completed my basement, have a large room to put a projector in 45x22. So I have a lot of flexibility on throw distance and screen size.


I have white textured ceiling tiles, as this seems to be one thing I didn't consider during construction to best support a HT environment. The walls are a flat tan paint. The ceiling is about 7'10".


The room is light controlled, but I tend to watch 60% sports/40% movies. I have been debating a few things:


1) My projector budget is around $2000. I've been debating between the Pan AE4000 and the Epson 8500. I thought I read the Panny would be better for sports, but the Espon is brighter. I watch a lot of sports, but I also have people over for the events and like some lights on. If I went with the Panny, I thought I might need a screen that will maximize brightness.


2) Screen: I've read about the 2.35:1 option. Is this the way to go now - is most material available in this format? Seems like many mask or have curtains so they can cleanly display both the 2:35:1 and 16x9 material.


2a) Has anyone put in a Wilsonart Laminate screen? I was debating between that and painting a screen on the wall... to get me started. If anyone is passionate about purchasing a screen, pls let me know.


3) I'll need to run my HDMI cable about 25 ft. Is this ok or will I lose any quality?


4) Any recommendations on receiver/speakers that I can get for $500-$800.


Thank you!
 

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Cubfan:


1. Both the Panny and the Epson are excellent projectors. I would suggest that you also consider the Viewsonic Pro8100. It is available for a very good price from Tigerdirect right now. There is an excellent discussion on the above $3000 forum. This projector originally retailed for $5000 but can be had for just over $1000 right now.


2. Your ceiling height will dictate your screen size. For starters, I would simply project onto the wall to confirm a screen size that works best for you. The Wilsonart Designer White is very good and will work very well with the Viewsonic projector.


3. With the money that you save on the projector and screen, I would invest more into the audio system, particularly the speakers, as your room is very large. For a receiver, I would suggest a Denon AVR 789 available from Dakmart. This is the previous years model although it will process the latest HD audio formats and will do all of the video switching. Thus, you will only need to run a single HDMI cable from the receiver to the projector.


4. Speakers are very subjective and there are a lot of options available. I would suggest that you read up in the speaker forums. Some of the internet distributors are very good and have good pricing and excellent return options so that you can test the speakers in your own home. Options are Axiom Audio and Elemental Designs.


The possibilities are endless and you could spend months reading and trying to decide what is best. Some people think the research is half the fun. In any event, you will be absolutely blown away by having a large screen with big sound in your own home. You will never look back!!


Cheers!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the thoughts. I do agree researching is half the fun, but one can also overwhelm themselves if not careful.


My ceilings are nearly 8 ft. Any recommendation on the 2.35:1 with the constant height screen vs 16x9 or both?


Thanks.
 

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Cubfan:


For sports, a 2.35:1 screen will not make any difference as all HD sports are in 16:9 format.


For movies, however, the 2.35:1 does make sense, especially since you have a large room which can acommodate the wide screen. Most movies are presented in the widerscreen format. Thus, with a 16:9 screen, these widescreen movies have a smaller image area.


The panasonic projector has a button to automatically adjust for CIH. The Viewsonic does not. However, as it has power zoom and lens shift, the image size can easily be adjust for CIH when needed right from your seat.


Cheers!!
 

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I'm in the same boat as you and was set on the panny 4000, but found the viewsonic for $1200 and believe i'm purchasing that as it's $800 cheaper and comes with a 3 year warranty. I've decided not to purchase until springbreak time so i'll have the time to actually set it up and everything (working fulltime and fulltime student). I would also love to hear about the wilsonart laminate screen vs paint. I think it would look awesome if it was just projected on the wall then while it's off it wouldn't be noticeable.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Has anyone seen the Panny and VS8100 side by side? I watch a lot of sports. I'm wondering, if cost isn't a consideration, is the Panny the better picture, etc?


Thanks.
 

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Cubfan:


I have not seen the Panasonic. I own the Viewsonic.


Based on what I have read, the Viewsonic is significantly brighter than the Panasonic, which is important for sports viewing. Also, the brightness is an important for larger screens as well.


Even though the Viewsonic is only rated at 1,000 or 1,200 lumens, it performs much better than its rating.


Here is Art's review of the Viewsonic. http://www.projectorreviews.com/viewsonic/pro8100/


Note that Art's review was completed when the projector sold for $5,000. His main complaint, the dynamic iris action, has been resolved by a firmware update which you can easily apply at home.


I am not saying that the Viewsonic's picture is better than that of the Panasonic. However, for the cost difference, the Viewsonic certainly represents a very good value and should meet all of your needs.


Cheers!!
 

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I am currently using a 122" diagonal 16:9 Wilsonart Designer White screen. The combination work really well together. If I had to do it again, I would strongly consider going to a 2.35:1 screen (i.e. maintain the same screen height as with the current one but increase the width) as we mostly watch movies (although we do also watch a fair bit of sports as well). My room is currently a work in progress so once everything is completed, I am sure we will use it much more.
 
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