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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, gang..I'll admit to now being THOROUGHLY confused (even more so than when I started planning this little project).


Recent "convential" wisdom on screens - esp. w/LCD projectors like the Sony 10HT say: GO WITH THE GREYHAWK (or Da-Lite "HC" equivalent).


Yet, I read in the the "Perfect Vision" mag that one of the really, really smart dudes that knows TONS about all this stuff went the EXACT OPPOSITE way, and recommends the Da-Lite "Hi Power", that has an amazingly high gain of 2.8. (?!! massive confusion time).


I'm not one of these guys who cares about "inky blacks" on LCD, as I know that's one of the current "compromises" with the technology. In fact, I don't even CARE about blacks - except if my picture is too dark. Nope..what I care most about is GOOD COLOR. I also hate "dim", washed out pictures (tho I realize I'll have to live with SOME of that with the current LCD technology, I'd like to get the "best" overall brightness and color possible!)


There's a web page out there that shows pics with the Da-Lite High Power and the 10HT. I will admit that it looks AMAZING in the pictures.


I've read all of the posts (pro-Greyhawk and pro-HiPower - opposite ends of the spectrum, IMHO!) and am completely and totally confused.


I even found the page where someone did a "bake off" of all the different screen materials with the 10HT and picked DA-MAT (a 1.0 gain) after testing the Hipower and a bunch of other samples.


Further complicating things? I called Da-Lite yesterday, and they say to use the Cinemavision (1.3 gain). They totally "pished" the concept of using the Hi Power, and when I told them that the "experts" recommended this, even Da-Lite themselves seemed stumped. Cinemasource then recommended the 1.5 gain material..URGH!


Can anyone help? I'll admit to being completely and totally confused by all of the different conflicting opinions.


PS: I will have good/total light control, will use Prog. Scan (likely Tosh 6200) and watch mostly DVD material on a 106'' (or so) 16:9 screen, from approx 13 & 18'.


THANKS!!!

 

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Frankly I have seen the 10 HT on every screen imagineable. I like it best on the Grayhawk. The high power screen is good too but if you ceiling mount the projector you will not gain all the benefits of the screen.


If your budget is limited I'd use the Da-lite matte white.Just make sure to use a progressive player or the Crytal imager on the 10HT. THe CI will yiled the bgest results.


Regards,

John Andrews

Vienna Va
 

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IMHO, the high gain idea was the worst one for a digital projector with good light output.


Are you sure that the 2.8 gain recommendation wasn't for a Sony CRT projector? (They make both).


For a digital projector with sufficient lumens, look for low-gain white (1.0 to 1.5) or gray.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Milori - well, unbelievably enough, the high gain recc (for Da-Lite "High Power" 2.8 gain screen) was indeed for the Sony 10HT.


It was by Bill Cushman (I think) in "The Perfect Vision" mag, issue number 30.


What's even more bizarre is that there are a BUNCH of Web pages out there with people's HTs where they bought a 10HT and the High Power 2.8 gain - apparently on Bills' recc. I'll have to admit that the pics look AMAZING. For an example of this config, check out:
http://www.toad.net/~tpfarr/Hometheater.htm


I was quite surprised..


Actually, a few of the "experts" I've been talking with have quietly & privately "pished" the Greyhawk or Da-Lite grey screens, saying they "dim" the picture and "take away picture punch".


This is why I'm just so confused..I was all set to buy the Greyhawk or Da-Lite HC until I started digging deeper!
 

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The high power concept was matched with the 10ht before the grey screen craze became widely available. Both screens provide a fantastic picture with the 10ht. Both improve perceived contrast but do it in different ways.


Here is MY OPINION. If absolute black level is something thats really important to you grey screens are better. If you are ceiling mounting your projector grey screens are better. If you have decent to good light control in your theater preferably with darker walls grey screens are better.


One final thing, the screens to AVOID with this projector in my opinion are matte white or 1.3 gain screens. These provide none of the perceived contrast enhancing benefits of the high power OR the grey hawk.


If you live in a white room with poor light control and you are floor mounting go with the high power.


Another thing to consider, high power is much less expensive then grey hawk (though simliar to da-lite hi-contrast (also grey))


The grey hawk will probably tend to produce a more "Accurate" "movie theater" like picture. The high power is great when you need maximum brightness. (Makes sense huh? hehe)



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All your bases are belonging to us since 1902...


[This message has been edited by akm3 (edited 06-05-2001).]
 

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Hi there,

I got my 10HT a couple of months back and I have the same dilema as you, I have control of my lighting condition but the maximum distance I can have is 9 ft. I have mine mounted on the ceiling for now.

I'd sure love to hear from the other experts and users who have actually installed and used these extreme opposites and can make a comparison for people like us. It would help tremendously as I am about to get a screen this month.



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Justin
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by hvn4179:
I bought the manual roll down, HDTV format, Hipwr and the picture is fantastic. If you like a more vibrant, sparkling picture then it's the right screen, IMO. I watched the Dark City last night and the black level is very acceptable. It becomes my favorite. BTW, the Hipwr is 1/5 cost of the Greyhawk.
Thanks for the input. I can certainly understand the cost comparison there, and for that I will be more inclined to go that route. I haven't done research on the new DA-LITE .95 gain screen yet, anybody out there have one and liked it? Is it comparable to the Grayhawk? I'd get second best if the difference is minimal and the cost is extreme.


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Justin
 

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I am on my 3rd screen in 13 months with my Sony VPL-10HT. This is getting expensive. My last screen was a Draper M1300 purchased from this forum with a 1.3 gain. I just traded it for a Stewart Grayhawk. Everything stated about the Greyhawk is true. It is the best I have seen yet with this projector...This is a match made in Heaven....IMO
 

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Before the Greyhawk arrived, most people either went w/ the Studiotek 1.3 gain or the Hipower 2.8 gain. Even w/ the projector is celing mounted, I bought the manual roll down, HDTV format, Hipwr and the picture is fantastic. If you like a more vibrant, sparkling picture then it's the right screen, IMO. I watched the Dark City last night and the black level is very acceptable. It becomes my favorite. BTW, the Hipwr is 1/5 cost of the Greyhawk.


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Hugh
 

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I find it interesting that people seem to like both the hipower and the greyhawk, which would seem to be opposite approaches.

I'm a very pleased dalite hipower user (with a VT540), after having previously used a low gain screen. I've got an extra, portable 60x80 hipower on a tripod mount, and would be very willing to cart it over to someone who's using a greyhawk for a direct comparison. NYC metro area.

I suspect both screens enhance contrast in different ways, the greyhawk by diminishing black level, and the hipower by enhancing white level. Room conditions being equal, they probably each have their strong points and excel in different scenes. Possibly the greyhawk looks better in low light scenes without a lot of contrast, and the hipower adds punch and snap to scenes with some bright content. The only way to check this out is with a direct comparison, but even then the results will depend on whether the projector is floor or ceiling mounted, and other room conditions.

Any takers?

BTW, my 45 x 105 higain pull down model c, with custom masking applied above and below (to mask letterbox bars) came in around $400, including tax and shipping, if my memory serves me right.
 

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I find it interesting that people seem to like both the hipower and the greyhawk, which would seem to be opposite approaches.

I'm a very pleased dalite hipower user (with a VT540), after having previously used a low gain screen. I've got an extra, portable 60x80 hipower on a tripod mount, and would be very willing to cart it over to someone who's using a greyhawk for a direct comparison. NYC metro area.

I suspect both screens enhance contrast in different ways, the greyhawk by diminishing black level, and the hipower by enhancing white level. Room conditions being equal, they probably each have their strong points and excel in different scenes. Possibly the greyhawk looks better in low light scenes without a lot of contrast, and the hipower adds punch and snap to scenes with some bright content. The only way to check this out is with a direct comparison, but even then the results will depend on whether the projector is floor or ceiling mounted, and other room conditions.

Any takers?

BTW, my 45 x 105 higain pull down model c, with custom masking applied above and below (to mask letterbox bars) came in around $400, including tax and shipping, if my memory serves me right.
 

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With a low gain screen the blacks would certainly look blacker but the whites will not be as white, the converse is true for a high gain screen. If the ambient light is controled then I don't see how the screen can affect the contrast at all. The screen reflects a certain percentage of the incoming intensity and a lower gain screen just reflects a smaller fraction. A high gain screen with ND filters in front of the projector can give you the same result as a low gain screen because the ND filter just lowers the incoming intensity. I am neglecting ambient light and assuming the room is dark. Its all about perception and how bright you want your whites to be. I'm not saying that a Grayhawk won't look better just that you can get the same result with a higher gain screen and lower light output from your projector.


If you can't control ambient light then, with a high light output projector, a low gain screen can give you more contrast. In this case its a signal to noise issue with the ambient light being the noise.


If I were starting out I would get the high gain screen and use ND filters to see what a lower gain screen looks like. If you like the low gain screen just keep the filters in front of the projector and save lots of money.


John Moschella
 

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Gents, well said! That's what my eyes tell me the diff. bet. low and hi gain screen. Each has plus and minus and that goes w/ the taste. I like scifi, action, adventure and animated movies which look spunkier at my ht than the local theater.


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Hugh
 

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John's comments are key to understanding the different "perceptions" and recommendations, I think-

I am neglecting ambient light and assuming the room is dark. Its all about perception and how bright you want your whites to be.


My experience suggests that the HighPower screen will be most helpful in a room which may not have complete ambient light control, and which is not a dedicated HT with dark walls and the like. In this case, it will do a better job of rejecting off-axis light scatter from the walls, ceiling, etc, and in general minimizing the contribution of the room to the perceived picture contrast ratio. In this situation a matt white screen is probably the worst choice, with a Greyhawk or similar "high contrast" screen being clearly preferred to the matt white.


In a dedicated room with complete light control and dark walls and floors, the Grayhawk will produce the deepest blacks. This is not necessarily the same thing as producing the highest contrast ratios- which afterall, is the ratio between the darkest screen area and the brightest.


The High Power surface, when used in conjunction with a projector that can produce 600-700 "real" lumens, suchs as the 10HT, is capable of producing enough light at the viewing position witha 96" diagnoal DA-LITE HP screen to be at the threshold of iris constriction (to reduce light at the retina). Any further increase in light output (in a situation with complete light control) would only force the iris to track the changes in lighting level, which could result in viewing fatigue. But this level of brightness does produce an image with a lot of subjective "punch" or contrast, as long as there are some reasonalby well lit areas of the screen.


Which approach a viewer prefers is a matter of personal preference; I think personally, I'd prefer a 9" CRT on the High Power- rather than the digital projectors! (including the ones I've owned). http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif

But in the range of what I can afford, both moneterily and space wise, and with anything short of a true 1200-2000 lumen projector, I'd recommend anyone view a High Power with a variety of material before making their purchasing decision. It's an excellent value.


Regards from another High Power fan,


Jon


[This message has been edited by JonMarsh (edited 06-07-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks to all for the replies!


What I'm netting out to so far is this..


- Greyhawks are good for producing deeper blacks (but may dim the rest of the picture due to their low gain). This is generally considered a good solution for ceiling-mount rooms, where there is a lot of control over ambient light.


- Da-Lite Hi-Power screens are apparently good for table-top mount installations in rooms where there is more ambient light (obviously not a dedicated HT room). The overall black levels appear greyer, but the whites and the rest of the picture pack more "punch" (as opposed to being dimmer in the Greyhawk world).


Bill Cushman was kind enough to comment on his HP/10HT article, and indicated that the HP is still a very good choice in his opinion even when it's ceiling mounted - tho you would lose gain and wind up with somewhere around 1.5 vs. the 2.8 or so of the native screen fabric.


I am leaning toward ruling out the Greyhawk as I do not care as much about "deeper" blacks, but want a screen with more "punch" and good color. My problem is that I can't figure out a way in a dedicated HT room to put the 10HT at table-top height and have it line up well with the bottom of the screen (which as many here know is apparently the "recommended" alignment for 10HT display in relation to your screen). The only thing I can imagine would probably be a small, custom-built "tower" that the 10HT would set on, and this would likely be a viewing obstacle for the audience..given the short throw distance of the 10HT, it would be impossible to put it at the back of the room, behind the audience..argh!


All this aside, I'd like to find a Da-Lite High Power screen somewhere (ANYWHERE!) in the Detroit Metro area..anyone have any ideas where I could take a look at this? All of the dealers seem to have generic, 1-1.3 gain screens or Greyhawks (urgh!).


Also - I'd love to still hear from 10HT owners using the Da-Lite High Power screen. Love it? Hate it? (When I told Da-Lite corp yesterday that I was considering HP for an LCD app, they scoffed [and that's a polite way of saying it!]). Instead, they recommended their "CinemaVision" product, which has a gain of only 1.3. This probably stacks up well against the Stewart Studiotek 130 - and pictures of that system I've seen have not impressed me..


Thanks again..


Jim
 

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Here is a non technical non videophile review.


I have a 10Ht and the Da-Lite high power. The projector is ceiling mounted in a dedicated room with total ambient light control. Ambient light of any kind definitely washes out the picture.


After having this system for over 6 months now, I can say without a doubt that the single biggest difference maker is the source of the video.


When viewing HDTV I am blown away. DVD's on a SONY 9000ES I notice a little loss overall but still get lost in the movie. But when viewing regular TV forget it. I don't even bother with regular TV on it.


As far as the screen specifically I feel the Grayhawk would be the best. From my understanding it was designed specifically for LCD projection technology. It was not out when I bought my screen and now to replace mine for me is to expensive.


As mentioned before even a lamp on in the room degrades the picture dramatically. But when the room is dark the picture is very bright, blacks are black and in HD it looks like you are looking out a window.



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Mark II


[This message has been edited by Mark II (edited 06-08-2001).]
 

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>Also - I'd love to still hear from 10HT owners using the >Da-Lite High Power screen. Love it? Hate it? (When I told >Da-Lite corp yesterday that I was considering HP for an >LCD app, they scoffed [and that's a polite way of saying >it!]). Instead, they recommended their "CinemaVision" \\


Unlike the nice people at Stewart, the Da-lite people are too dumb to know how good their high power is and some of it's great strengths -- I had to argue with them because they thought I didn't know what I was talking about. To be fair, they believed they were helping me prevent a mistake, but I knew what I wanted.




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I agree that the people at Dalite (at least the one I spoke with) don't seem to fully understand what they have. They do, however, have a good, reasonably priced product.

The nice thing about this forum is that it's actually ahead of many of the manufacturers. I imagine there's been a lot more comparison of screen types for home video right here than at any of the screen manufacturers. One nice thing about Stewart is that they (he) seems to be paying attention.


The problem with most of the comments above is that many of us (myself included) are speaking theoretically, having never directly compared the two screens above. These things really must be seen.


I'll repeat my offer to cart my hipower screen over to a greyhawk users ht. (NYC metro area). I'll even bring my VT540-ISCO.
 

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My two cents...

That's my web page and pics people have been talking about. I got the high power screen on Bill Cushman's recommendation and I think you have to read some of Bill's and the right people at Da-lite's explanation of why the high power screen is so different from other screens with gain. It has to do with the very small size of the reflective elements and I think in part to the surface covering. The resulting picture (from a table mounted projector) is really amazing. The 10HT needs to be tweeked using this screen to lower the bias levels and maximize the blacks. The stock settings are more in tune with a lower gain screen. I really enjoy the brightness and the clarity of this screen.


Tom Pfarr http://www.toad.net/~tpfarr/Hometheater.htm


Tried to think but nothing happened!

 
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