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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking for a new digital projector. I have never owned one so I need to know what to look for. My room is 22' long but 17' wide. So what kind of projector do I need for a room this size. Also what size screen?


Also do all projectors have fans? Are some quieter than others?
 

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You need to determine three things before you start: Budget, projector & screen placement, and room lighting conditions.


Ideal screen size is a function of where you intend to sit. If you are one of these people who sit in the middle of the movie theater, You will want to size the screen such that you are sitting about 1.5 or 1.6x screen widths back from the screen. If you are a back of the theater type, try 2.0 to 2.5x. If you like to sit in the front row, 1.2 or 1.3 screen widths back is good. There are many trade-offs, and the screen selection can help to overcome some of the limitations. Most installations are in the 90" to 110" diagonal range and most projectors are optimized for this size, but you can go bigger with the right projector/screen combination.


All projectors have cooling fans. Just like PCs, some are fairly quiet, others are louder. Generally speaking, noise output has improved considerably over the last couple generations and you generally won't notice them once you are immersed in a good movie, but they are audible during the quietest passages.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Assayer /forum/post/0


You need to determine three things before you start: Budget, projector & screen placement, and room lighting conditions.


Ideal screen size is a function of where you intend to sit. If you are one of these people who sit in the middle of the movie theater, You will want to size the screen such that you are sitting about 1.5 or 1.6x screen widths back from the screen. If you are a back of the theater type, try 2.0 to 2.5x. If you like to sit in the front row, 1.2 or 1.3 screen widths back is good. There are many trade-offs, and the screen selection can help to overcome some of the limitations. Most installations are in the 90" to 110" diagonal range and most projectors are optimized for this size, but you can go bigger with the right projector/screen combination.


All projectors have cooling fans. Just like PCs, some are fairly quiet, others are louder. Generally speaking, noise output has improved considerably over the last couple generations and you generally won't notice them once you are immersed in a good movie, but they are audible during the quietest passages.

Excellent response.

One other matter if I may, source and source material. The signal you feed your PJ makes all the difference. Great PJ and bad signal equal bad image. Good PJ and great signal equal excellent image. 'nuff said.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Assayer /forum/post/0


You need to determine three things before you start: Budget, projector & screen placement, and room lighting conditions.


Ideal screen size is a function of where you intend to sit. If you are one of these people who sit in the middle of the movie theater, You will want to size the screen such that you are sitting about 1.5 or 1.6x screen widths back from the screen. If you are a back of the theater type, try 2.0 to 2.5x. If you like to sit in the front row, 1.2 or 1.3 screen widths back is good. There are many trade-offs, and the screen selection can help to overcome some of the limitations. Most installations are in the 90" to 110" diagonal range and most projectors are optimized for this size, but you can go bigger with the right projector/screen combination.


All projectors have cooling fans. Just like PCs, some are fairly quiet, others are louder. Generally speaking, noise output has improved considerably over the last couple generations and you generally won't notice them once you are immersed in a good movie, but they are audible during the quietest passages.

I agree with CMRA excellent post. I would add to it just a couple things.


Digital projectors come in basically two types LCD and DLP there are other methods but these are the two major and totally different systems of getting an image on the screen. They both have distinct advantages and disadvantages. I wont go into a lot of detail on that because my second bit of advice is going to be this.


Read and search using the search tool available at this site. The amount of information here is incredible and it can also be overwhelming. So take your time and digest what you learn slowly. There is a under 3000 forum you have found and a screen forum also under the screen forum there is a DIY screen sub forum. That may be something that will interest you in doing or it may not. even if you are set on buying a screen reading thru that forum will teach you a lot about how screens work etc.


The third point I would make for someone going to a FP for the first time is your room will play as large a part in the PQ you will end up seeing as the projector or the screen. But actually all three work together and any one of the three not matching the other two will throw the whole thing off.


You have to determine what you want your viewing experience to be and then make selections and adjustments to all three of the above mentioned things to make it happen. No one can tell you what those are for you but many here will give you great assistance in getting where you want to be.


For example in my case I had a very specific set of desired results that may not match yours at all. I wanted a super huge 4:3 screen because I enjoy lots of 4:3 material still. Classic movies etc. I needed the ability to also show lots of wide screen materials as we enjoy new movies also. The biggest issue I had to over come is when viewing movies I wanted a very dark room and a movie theater film like experience. But I also desired a room that for viewing conventional TV and sports with a group of people would produce a bright PQ with a good deal of ambient light added back into the room. Party type viewing / sports bar etc. All these wants reflect in the projector screen and room design I selected.


Good luck with your project and once you get setup you will never regret going to a projector.


PS. Remember big screens need big sound to complete the experience.
 

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Here are my choices for digital projectors

http://thetechhunter.blogspot.com/20...rojectors.html


and a brief post on what to look for in buying a projector
http://thetechhunter.blogspot.com/20...projector.html


If I had $3500 to spend on a projector and screen (ie audio was already paid for), I would probably get one of the two 1080p projectors on my list ( www.projectorreviews.com has a good comparison test of all 1080p projectors) and get an inexpensive dalite or carada screen.


Otherwise I'd get a Mitsubishi HD1000 and wait for 1080p prices to drop.
 

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Remember that PJs do not include sound systems (a few exceptions). So your budget (as gwlaw99 alluded to) needs to be included if you don't already have a good 5.1 channel (minimum) sound system - sound is 50% of the HT experience.


HTIB systems don't really cut it, even the expensive ones (although they look fancy and have lot's of advertising hype).
 

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The advice you received above is excellent. However, I am going to add

a word of caution. You can read about digital pj's of all types until the

cows come home. This might help you to clear up what you want but

it is just as likely to totally confuse you. The good news is that

if you are looking for an enjoyable experience sitting back and watching

a movie in your own home then almost any pj/screen you might buy will do that for

you right now.


That being said, here are a few additional questions you should

answer so people here can narrow down your search.


Does your room have much ambient light or can you make it quite dark?

What color are the walls? I ask this because one option for you

would be to buy the pj first and use the wall as a screen. You can play

around with placement and picture size until you find out what you prefer.



What will you be watching, dvd's (HD or SD), TV (HD or SD) and in what proportion?

Do you want to watch sports with some lights on.


Are there aspects of picture quality that are important to such as

black level, contrast, brightness, color accuracy, shadow detail or

are you new to all of this. ? Also, are you a tweaker or do you want something that

you can pretty much setup and go?


Are you an upgrader or do you expect you will stick with your purchase for some time?


To get you started I would follow gwlaw99's advice and go to

http://www.projectorreviews.com/


These reviews are less technical than some and are intended for the typical pj owner.


You might want to read

http://www.projectorreviews.com/best...tors/index.asp


to get a feel for some of the main players.


I would also look at

http://www.projectorreviews.com/advi...tors/index.asp


though it was written before the Epson 1080 came out at $2999.
 

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If I had 3500 and a decent sound setup I would go 1080p all the way and look at the Pearl or the Epson 1080 home. Or you could get a decent 720p pj and then buy a decent sound system and be just as happy I am sure.
 

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OK, so far there is excellent advice, but it tends toward the right questions to ask yourself. I'll offer some answers that are suitable for most newbies.


Your room size is ideal. Get a pull-down screen about 110" in diameter. The High Power screen will not show the "waves" that inevitably develop in pull-down screens, so give that strong consideration. Don't bother with an electric screen unless you really like watching them go up and down, and don't pay for a "tab tensioned" screen right now. Sticklers for perfectly accurate color want a pure white screen, but I recommend you consider a finer screen later, if ever.


Sound is important, and don't skimp on your subwoofer - 140 watts minimum.


Projectors delivering 720p are commodities. If you get one of the 6 major, new, & most popular models you simply cannot go wrong. They are all very good, and all will bring a decent resale if you want to upgrade in 2 years. 1080p projectors are not quite bright enough right now, so wait for later to get one of those, unless you have total light control - a very dark room.


Beginners should not start out trying to get their ideal system. Work up to it, the way most of us did with our sound systems. So long as you buy mainstream equipment, you can sell it later (or move it to a bedroom) and upgrade.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks guys. I guess my post sounded pretty newbie-ish but I'm not so newbie to HT just projectors. I have a pretty kick ass sound system already. Not a HTiB either
. My room was built for the sole purpose of being a HT. There are no windows in this room, its perfectly rectangular 22x17 with a 10' ceiling. Its painted dark grey and black.


That being said, up til now I've been using a 42" rptv and I'm ready to upgrade to a projector and screen. I plan to put 2 rows of 4 each theater style seats so I'd like to get the largest screen and pj I can afford and still have good picture quality. Black control is important to me, but so is color and brightness so I guess I'm just looking for personal recomendations so I can look at various models and choose one for me.


If you had 3500-4000 what would you buy? Id also like a pj that is relatively quiet as non movie noise drives me insane! THanks for the help so far.
 

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I am going to assume you want a fixed screen rather than

a pulldown. If this is the case, then with your budget and room

I would go with something like the

new Epson Home Cinema 1080 and a 120-130" screen

form either Da-Lite or Carada. (A Stewart screen may put you over

budget). A Carada and a Pearl would likely max out your budget.

With the Pearl you could consider Carada's Brilliant White to help with brightness.
 
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