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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings,

A friend directed me to the AVSForum site and, I must say, I'm impressed and overwhelmed with your collective knowledge of digital projectors.


I've been doing what I thought was pretty solid research and making purchases only to be disappointed with the results. eBay is becoming the dumping ground of those mistakes... :)


Here's the situation and I'd greatly appreciate all thoughts/recommendations on how to improve it:


We have a new home with a 16x19 'bonus room' we're making a Theater. It has a vaulted ceiling. We've mounted a component rack on one wall and are throwing a projected image about 19 feet to the opposite wall. The projector sits on the top shelf of the rack (about 8 feet off the ground). We have a DirecTivo, DVD and VCR connected to the projector. "Which projector" you ask? Read on...


We started with an InFocus LP350. XGA 1024x768. Cool. Well, it doesn't keystone video - only data. With the projector that high up off the ground, we had to be able to keystone. We sold that projector on eBay.


We upgraded to an InFocus LP500. SVGA 800x600. We weren't projecting HD and keystoning was more important. Selecting this projector kept us in the
 

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Yikes...

Avoid keystoning. I would think that with the pj at 8' you could do a straight shot with a lens shift should do the trick. Turn the pj over in a "pseudo" ceiling mount...whatever it takes to avoid keystoning!
 

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Why are you keystoning? That's death to an image. You have an 8 foot rack with shelf at the top, so you should be able to "ceiling mount" the projector (inverting it) and produce a proper image.


Kevin


Edit - mrmucko types much faster than I :)
 

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We both assume that each of your pj's is capable of bing inverted for a ceiling mount. They appear to be business class mobile presentation pj's

and perhaps they can't. I dunno. Consider a native 16:9 home theatre pj if DVD viewing is a priority.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The structure of the shelves doesn't really lend itself to having a projector 'mounted' but it could be played with. And as I mentioned, it's a vaulted ceiling. We wanted to avoid installing a multi-foot post straight down from the ceiling.


Oh, this should be easier. Thanks for your thoughts.


Cate
 

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You really have no choice - to place a PJ 8 feet up, it must be inverted to properly display the image. There may be a unit which will allows optical keystoning to the extent you're after in your present setup, but that's a tough thing to limit yourself to with so many nice units on the market.


Any chance you can post a picture of the rack? I love giving DIY building advise over the internet. I don't have to clean anything up, and if it all goes horribly wrong I can just re-register under a new Nic and join in on the cursing of my former self :D.


Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Not sure if avsforum will take this link below well. If it doesn't work, to see the item, go to www.skymall.com, shop by All Stores, choose Lizell from the alpha list and look at Electronic Furniture or search for 'Tower'. It'll come up.


We got the item with the big metal shelf at top thinking we'd put both the DirecTivo machine and the Projector. We're thinking of extending that with a long wood shelf and mounting the projector to the underside of the shelf. I'll keep y'all posted!


Thanks,

Cate


Tower rack
 

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Cate,


The URL's aren't working for me but...

Lot's of people get little stick-on rubber feet for the "top" of the pj then invert it for the ceiling mount "on the shelf". You'll lose access to any controls on top but you have a remote right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yay, Mr Mucko!

We love your idea and we're going to give it a whirl... and, yes, we've got a remote. It's up high and I'm very short. :)


This site rocks.

Cate
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Update: So the 'feet' on the top of the InFocus LP500 turned upside down is a terrific solution to the ugly keystoning issue we had going on. Thanks so much Mr. Mucko.


However! We still have a gray 'box' around a widescreen DVD image. 4:3 broadcast signals look fine (with a very small gray frame -it's acceptable) but the widescreen images appear to be floating in gray gravy. Also, the right edge of the image is muddy while the left edge is sharp and clear. I've seen other posts in AVSForum regarding this but with the acronym-heavy soup ladled up as responses, I'm left slightly lost as to how to actually solve the problem. (no soup for me!)


We're using s-video in from a JVC DVD player to the LP500 Composite video is fed in through the VCR originating from the DirecTiVo satellite box. Video source is 'auto select' - I've not tried forcing PAL or NTSC, etc.


Is it white balancing? Do I need to load additional software onto the projector? Is it my cables?


Bob W. from InFocus... are you listening?


Thanks so much, everyone. I'm really looking forward to finalizing a kick-butt home theater!


Cate


(ps... JBL's home theater speaker system rocks!)
 

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It sounds like the PJ is not scaling the image - just displaying it in native format in the middle of the panel. My old projector did the same thing.

You may need a PC to get the most out of this unit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
A PC to load new software or a PC to manage the PJ on a regular basis? If the latter is the case, I'll be looking to sell an InFocus LP500.


Besides, we're a Macintosh household... :)
 

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What GKS is talking about would be a HTPC, home theater PC. Since these are all presentation projectors primarily they will look best if driven directly from a computer video card output at their specified resolution, 800x600 or 1024x768. A computer is a terrific "scaler", ie it scales the DVD signals electronically to that resolution.


You should really look at a projector that is expressly designed for HT applications, in my opinion. For instance, I bought an Epson TW100 that is 1280x720 pixels and has a built-in scaler etc so when I feed it s-video, it creates a stunning (in my opinion) image using the entire LCD panel. Coincidentally, it is installed on a shelf, inverted... :)


Anyway, it sounds to me that what you want is a good image with a minimum hassle level. A HTPC is not minimum hassle, it's a pain in the posterior especially to set up. Image quality is nearly unbeatable, but there is such a thing as "good enough", at least in my opinion.


There are entry-level projectors that use WVGA panels instead but otherwise work similarly, and there is a new Sony widescreen projector coming out soon (HS10, you cannot avoid the posts about it here if you try, so look around) that isn't too expensive and looks promising.


Of course there are drawbacks to a 16:9 projector too - 2.35:1 widescreen will still show narrow black bars on top and 4:3 (TV) ratio material will have black bars on the side. Still, I prefer that in order to get the best possible resolution for widescreen movies. Oh, and you need a 16:9 screen as well of course (I use a 4:3 roll up screen but only retract it until it is in a 16:9 shape)
 

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Hang on, if the LP500 has a faroudja chipset in it, it can't be so limited as to not be able to scale the image to the edges of the panel. I wasn't paying attention and had to read up on the machine and remember now that it is indeed a home theater projector, so no HTPC should be required.


Keystoning will introduce a little greyness at the sides because you lose a little panel surface in order to project a non-square image in the square panel, but I'm assuming you now have keystone set to 0?

Anything but 0 will leave you with a grey edge around the image and you won't be using the full 800x600 resolution to display an image. Better to live with an image that isn't 100% square than to use keystoning, IMHO.


My Epson has a both a "through" mode and a mode where it scales. Through mode displays the signal at the resolution it is sent at, which is almost invariably lower than the panel resolution for me. Are you sure you can't get rid of those grey edges by selecting the right display mode?


Anyway, on a 4:3 projector, you will always have rather large-ish gray bars on top and below with widescreen material.


Check out this url:

http://www.dvdweb.co.uk/information/anamorphic.swf


Its a nice flash animation that explains the different aspect ratios. It's not 100% factually correct but it does a pretty good job of it and is very "visual".
 

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Don't sell it just yet!


I poked around in the user guide for the 500. (it's online over at the Infocus web site).

How do you have the Image Menu set up? What you're seeing sounds consistent with the "Resize = Native" setting. Try playing around with the options and see if you can select "widescreen" or "4:3" and invoke some scaling. (your setting here should match the setting in your DVD player - setting them both for 16:9 widescreen should yield the best results for DVD anamorphic material).


Kevin
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I have played with the Resize setting on the projector however I have not done anything to the DVD player, as yet. I've found that the Resize = Native setting does the least 'damage' to the image.


Viewing a flick with Resize = Widescreen shrinks the image even further within the gray box. Resize = Enhanced widescreen stretches it too much.


I'll take a look at the DVD player and see what I can do to it to force the image to scale appropriately. It's a JVC 3-disk DVD player. Let's see what it can do!


Thanks guys - and I'll keep you posted.


Cate
 
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