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I am looking for a projector for around $1000 that will give me a great picture watching sports on hdtv and video games, but one that will also allow my kids to watch tv while playing with their toys in my basement. Any suggestions for one that will still give a great picture if some lights are on for my kids to see? I am not sure what to look for in a projector. Thanks for any advice.
 

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Originally Posted by aarmau /forum/post/16943527


I am looking for a projector for around $1000 that will give me a great picture watching sports on hdtv and video games, but one that will also allow my kids to watch tv while playing with their toys in my basement. Any suggestions for one that will still give a great picture if some lights are on for my kids to see? I am not sure what to look for in a projector. Thanks for any advice.

More importantly than just the projector would be the screen. For instance, the screen I created is much better in ambient light than a typical screen, especially coming from the sides. It's a uniquely very high gain angular reflective silver screen that is curved. Often times screens like this have ended up costing more than twice as much as great projectors themselves.


If you want a good ambient light picture you'll want a screen like the ones I build + a decently bright projector and with intelligent & VERY simple light control you can end up with great results; Often times plasma tv like.

This is my 8' wide screen (9'2" diagonal) displaying Underworld with an ECP4500+ CRT projector (about 150ansi lumens) with a 500-watt work light shined on to it from the side with a pieces of matte white material similar to most regular screens.



Now, you won't ever want to watch this with a light shined directly onto the screen, but you can see how much ambient light it rejects coming from the sides when you compare the differences in the projected image and the darkness of the black bars.


So, when it comes to having better ambient light results the screen along with some smart and easy light control are key. If you're interested in more info you can pm me anytime.


As far as projectors go. A Sharp DT-510 with the iris off or iris off plus in bright lamp mode is very bright + excellent in the dark with the iris on. The Panasonic AX200U is even a bit brighter, but inferior overall to the DT-510.
 

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aarmau -- You should be looking at something like the Panasonic PT-AX200 or the Epson Cinema 700 or 720. They are 720P projectors with lots of light output and are in your price range.


Remember, ambient light is competing with the light coming from the PJ. Therefore, you don't want the light to shine on, or toward, the screen. As MTyson said, the screen you get is all important. You want one which will tend to reject ambient light coming from the sides of the room. I use a Da-Lite High-Power screen which is "retro-reflective". It works quite well in rejecting ambient light from the sides of the room. It is one of the lower cost options (their retractable versions cost less that their fixed screen versions - the Model C is recommended). The AVS store ( http://www.avscience.com/contact.htm ) sells the Da-Lite screens at good prices to AVS Forum members.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by aarmau /forum/post/16943527


I am looking for a projector for around $1000 that will give me a great picture watching sports on hdtv and video games, but one that will also allow my kids to watch tv while playing with their toys in my basement. Any suggestions for one that will still give a great picture if some lights are on for my kids to see? I am not sure what to look for in a projector. Thanks for any advice.

You want a very bright projector, and a DIY gray screen. There's more to consider, such as screen size, ceiling height, and throw distance, but past that, you want a light cannon. If they are still available, an Infocus X9 might be suitable. The X10 might be worth a look, but is a few hundred past your budget. Optoma HD65 could work for you too. If you limit your screen size to about 80", you will pick up some needed brightness. If you want a 100" screen, or more, it will be a little harder to get great results. Planning your room lighting will help a lot. You can have a good bit of light in the room if you can keep it from reflecting onto the screen. For example, if your room is 20 feet long, and the screen is at one end, there can be a lot of light on at the end opposite the screen if you plan the lighting and wall colors carefully. With a simple DIY painted screen, it will be easy, and inexpensive to fix the screen if the kids decide to throw stuff at it.


Here's a screenshot. X10 at 88" diagonal on a simple painted gray screen. Using low lamp mode here. There are three 50w lights on 7 feet from the screen shinning away from the screen, toward my seats. Only a portion of the light makes it back to the screen to effect the image.

 

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kbgl -- Very good suggestions. DIY makes a whole lot of sense with small children (or larger) playing in the room. Plus it's a lot less money.


I recall an AVS member from England, that had his brand new Plasma HDTV set accidentally broken by his teenager & friends rough-housing in his HT room.

aarmau -- See http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/forumdisplay.php?f=110 for DIY screen info.
 
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