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Discussion Starter #1
I'm trying to pick a projector for my basement media room. A few facts:


Room is 18' x 18'

Ceiling is 9'

Screen size will be 100"

Throw distance around 14'


Is there a specific projector that you'd recommend? I'm looking to spend no more than $1300 - 1500.


A few that I've looked at include:


Epson PowerLite Home Cinema 8350. I like that it has horizontal and vertical lens shift


BenQ W1070, Optoma HD25LV, and BenQ W1080ST also got good reviews, but they only had vertical lens shift.


Any advice would be appreciated.
 

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Are you hoping to do 3d? If so, brightness will be a very important factor to consider - calibrated brightness, not the number on the box, those can be very different.


A lot of this has to do with your preference of LCD vs DLP models, both have their pros and cons, right now epson is the budget darling for LCD home theater projectors. Have you looked at the powerlite 3020? You should be able to find one for under $1500 or thereabouts, it is in a whole new build quality class above the 8350.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the advice.


The problem with the 3020 is that it does't have lens shift. How important is that?


I figured that the 8350 would give me some flexibility with installation (in case I'm a little off centered) or if the mount doesn't move enough from a 9' ceiling to center it correctly on my screen.
 

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Are you going to ceiling mount? I'm finding that vertical lens shift is very important with a ceiling mount on my 9'8" ceiling. In order to get the image low enough on the wall (I'm shooting for around 28-30" off the floor), I had to lower the projector down about 36", which put it at head level. This was with an Epson 2030. The Epson 3020 would be a little better, I would only have to lower it 30". I wanted 3D, so I figured out my choices with lens shift in the 1000-1500 range were the BenQ W1070, and the recently price reduced Mitsubishi HC7900WD. I ordered the Mits, I just hope it is bright enough. I don't think the Optoma you mention has lens shift, and the 8350 doesn't do 3D.


Use the manufacturers' projection calculators to see where the image will project on the wall.


Matt
 

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Just keystone it in, don't worry about lens shift!


Ok, sarcasm aside, Lens shift is very nice and unfortunately, projectorcentral does not have offset date loaded. Epson does provide an offset guide in the use manual but from what I have heard, it does have a larger offset than indicated in the user manual, making that info suspect.


Lens shift really is a glorious thing when you are trying to figure out your placement, once that is done, it doesn't matter one bit. I will say this, I have noticed that brightness goes down quite noticeably when you move away from the native position, every time I have had the option of using lens shift, I have wound up finding a way to get it to in the native position for the extra brightness.
 

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BTW, with having a 100" screen and 9' ceiling, it is likely that you may not need the lens shift as much as others do, I am in an ultra short basement and I would love the extra height to play with and get my screen off the floor.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I was using the calculator to figure out throw distance, etc. for the various projectors.


The BenQ W1070 recommends a throw range of 8'4" to 10'10" based on a 100" screen


The Optoma HD25-LV is 10'11" to 13'1" based on a 100" screen.


What happens if I go further than the recommended throw range? Do I lose picture quality? Does it not focus as well?
 

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It will focus fine, the image just won't be 100" anymore, you will have gone outside the zoom range. So if you want a 100" screen with the W1070 and you put your projector 12' back, the smallest it will go is larger than 100", conversely, if you move it forward to 7' away, the max image size will be smaller than 100".
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That makes sense. I'd like to keep the screen at 100". It is looking like Epson is the way to go since the throw distance is around 13 - 14" and my outlet has been located in that area.
 

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What colors are you walls, floor and ceiling. The Mits HC7900Dw will work at 14' and a 100" screen and has the lens shift and of set designed for a high ceiling. At $799 this projector is comparable to the Epson 5020 at a 3rd the price. Unless you need LCD and a brighter projector the 8350 would be a down grade over the mits. The mits I would suggest a dark painted room and full light control with a 1.2 or 1.3 gain white screen.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by EddieVT  /t/1519954/projector-advice#post_24413509


walls and ceiling will be beige. Carpet will be light.

unfortunately those colors are the worst choice for any projector. If you can't at least darken the area surrounding the screen then image will be less then ideal. You may need to look at a brighter projector with a gray screen.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I understand. The room isn't just for home a theater, so we don't want a dark room.


It is a basement, with French doors in the room. They'll have blinds on them. Also, there is a deck above the doors, so not much light comes in.
 

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Paint the room darker, add lights. Don't make it 'another room' of your home, but a more purpose built space instead of the downstairs family, living, and bedroom which you already have everywhere else in your home. I mean, truly, there is no need to make a basement with 9' ceilings look just like every room you already have. Or, mix up the color scheme to help make one of the grandstanding features of your basement look as nice as possible.


Lens shift is nice, but not required and only a few projectors, including the 8350 have enough lens shift to be really worthwhile with higher ceilings. But, a projector like the aforementioned Mits. 7900 has a lot of offset, which means you can have it a fair distance above your screen and still have good results.


How did you arrive at a 100" screen? Did you just pick a size out of a hat, or did you calculate it based upon your seating distance and your typical seating position at your local theater? It seems a lot of people do the former, when they should be doing the later.


I would go with the Optoma or the Mits. and not look at a projector design from several years ago even though it is a solid model.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for the advice.



We looked at where we would be sitting in the room, and put tape up for a 100" screen. It looked pretty good for the wall. I don't want to feel like my eyes are bouncing around all over the place.


However, I'm going to get the projector first and see how certain sizes look on the wall and then get a screen.


I'll look at the paint color.


The thing with the Optoma is that the throw range seems to be off for the size screen that I want. I put the outlet about 14' feet back, which seems to line up perfectly for an Epson projector (100 - 110/120" screen).
 

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Honestly, if I was not going to have a dedicated theater, or at least decorate the room to be more suited for one, I wouldn't get a projector. I have seen SO many very nice homes that have these quasi theaters in them and the image quality from the projectors is atrocious. Even if you only watch films at night or when you have perfect light control, the amount of light reflected from the walls and ceiling will completely wash out your picture. In the end, you will wind up with an image that has 100:1 contrast ratio and lousy colors.


With how cheap large tv's are these days, I would go that route in a heartbeat over a projector in bright room, especially since you only want to go as large as 100" in the first place. You can get a nice 75" tv for just a bit over $2000 or a 70" tv for around $1500, even though the image is smaller, you will be able to see what is going on a lot better.
 

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You'll have 6 recessed lights switched OFF



I'm like you and have a general purpose room. We ended up going with a dark blue, as it still looks like a "room" when not a theater. Also like you, have two doors on the side, with blinds and curtains. Shady back yard with a deck above. Light control is important with a PJ too



Good luck with your journey!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I thought some projectors were good for a standard living room?


I can looking into painting the walls in the theater room darker. Maybe some kind of grey.


I haven't seen too many 70-75" TVs for $1500 - 2000
 
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