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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been contemplating and researching getting a projector for my living room for a couple years. My living room has a moderate amount of ambient light throughout the day.


I will mainly use my projector at night for a couple hours to just watch a movie, or play alittle Xbox or some Doom 3 on the PC. However, I would like to be able to use it during the day occasionally to watch some sports.


I've went through several choices, and due to my placement needs in the living room, the moderate amount of ambient light, and screen size I am wanting. (106") I have pretty much made my mind up that the Panasonic PT-AX200u fits the bill perfectly for my needs and my budget. I am fairly knowledgable, or as about as knowledgable as one could be for researching projectors and home theater for quite some time. I have always used a big screen TV with my surround system, but, I have always wanted something a bit bigger for watching movies. I am fairly confident I can make a good choice on the projector itself. But, with the screens...I am lost.. I just do not know where to begin with the screens. When I read about screens, I get so much varying information and just get lost in trying to decide. I've read just about every screen guide out there and still cant decide on what is appropriate. There are screens that cost 200 and screens that cost 2,000. They seem to be similar, in gain, material, color. So what makes them that much different?


Could someone please help a guy out and post a few screens that would work well with my projector in a living room setup? I am looking for a pull down 106" screen, I would rather have a manual pull-down.


The details of my situation:


Projector: PT-AX200u

Approx Room size: 15 x 18

Throw Distance: 12.5' for 106" diag 16:9

Seating Distance: 11'

Seating Height: Eyes at 44-48"

Ambience during day: Moderate ( I do have blackout curtains + blinds, will eventually tint my windows as well)


What I need: A manual pull-down, that will pull down over an LCD tv that I am going to hang on the wall.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Anyone?




What about the Vapex screens. Visual Apex offers those projector bundles and it would be pretty cost effective to buy one from them, as I intended to buy my projector from them anyway.


The way the living room is laid out, I could actually do ok with a wall screen, instead of getting a pull-down. I would just have to put the TV into another area of the room. The room opens up unto a loft area and so its technically all together to make a very large room anyway. So, I've got lots of options as far as screen placement goes.


So, Vapex screens, would they work well in an ambient light situation and with a fairly bright projector like the AX-200u?
 

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I think your best affordable manual pull-down solution is going to be the Da-Lite Model B with High Power (HP) screen surface. BUT to effectively use the HP your projector must be placed at a height near seated viewer eye level, and your ambient light sources should NOT be behind your viewers. This is because the HP screen is retroreflective, which means that it reflects light back towards the source (the projector). It rejects light off to the sides of (as well as above and below) the projector-screen axis. It will NOT reject light coming from behind the viewers.


I have used a 100" HP screen in my living room for about three years, and I am very pleased with its performance. Having said that, I want to emphasize that no front projection screen that I know of will do very well in strong ambient light. If there is enough ambient light to see the screen, that will set your darkest possible black level in whatever image you are projecting. A bright PJ like the AX200 and a bright, directional screen like the HP will help, because a bright image will stop down the iris of your viewers' eyes, reducing the effect of the ambient light, but this help can only go so far. You really will need to control the ambient light if you want a great picture with front projection.
 
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