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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've looked at all those home-theater screen-shots with an almost lustful envy...and from many of those images and what people have been saying it looked like the whole controversy over screen-door effects with LCD was moot if you sat far enough back (and the black-issue of LCD could also be dealt with to a fair degree if proper tweaking was employed). Unfortunately, there seems to be no one in the Washington DC area with a set-up for me to view first hand (any volunteers please speak up!). So yesterday I saw my first LCD presentation at a home-theater shop.


I understand that calibration is a big issue with any type of projector, and I know that dealers rarely have the understanding or the desire to tweak these projectors to their maximum performance levels.


HOWEVER, the screen-door effect is something that calibration would have no effect over, and I was shocked to find that no matter how far back I got in the room, that the screen-door matrix of the Sharp xv-z7000 HDTV LCD projector was clearly and distractingly visible on a 4x3 screen with an approximate 6 ft width.


Is this what all LCD projectors look like or is this worse than most? I'm dreaming of saving up for a Sony 10 or 11 or a Sanyo 60. Are they all like this or do they present an image that really is watchable from a distance of about 12-15 feet on a screen that's 6 feet wide? Are people just pretending when they say that the screen-door isn't noticable or do other projectors really do a better job? Please don't tell me I have to wait for D-ILA to come down in price or for DLP to fix rainbows and go 16x9!!!


Help! I'm disillusioned!!! Tell me that it's not really this bad!


-dave



[This message has been edited by DaViD Boulet (edited 07-09-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Wow I really mistyped that model number (now corrected). Yes, that was the model.


I was really impressed with the small size of the projector and the huge image it displayed...even with ambient light. But to my eyes the screen door was hard to ignore (not to say that it's not so much an issue for your eyes or the way you have your system set-up).


I'm glad to hear that apparently the Sony panels exhibit less SDE. Anybody out there evaluated both of these units to give a good comparison?


And I'm also throwing out my usual request to take a peak at anybody's calibrated HT set-up in the Wash DC or surrounding area who's using a sub-$10,000 LCD, DLP, or D-ILA projector and feels they're getting a good image.


thanks!


dave
 

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When you hear people talk about screen door not being a big problem with LCD's anymore, I think they're almost always talking about an XGA unit or the 10HT's even higher resolution panels. The pixels in an 800x600 image are quite a bit bigger, and I think screen door is generally quite a bit more noticeable on SVGA LCD's. -- Herb
 

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The VT540 is an XGA LCD projector that has received much praise here at the forum and elsewhere. My head is 11' from a 7.1' wide 16:9 image. The only time that I have noticed a screen door is on SD material where large amounts of the same color (usually bright) are present. An example would be the outfield of a baseball game when shot from high up. It really is a rare occurance. I have never seen it with HD material.



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I always see the screen door myself, and therefore avoid LCD projectors. The screen door just jumps out at me and forms my lasting impression of the unit. While the 10 HT has it less than other units, I can still see the effect. On the other hand, the rainbow effect on DLP's doesn't really bother me.


This brings out a fundamental issue about selecting equipment.


While this forum is excellent at pointing out the issues and directing you to the choices, no one can say how you personally are going to react to the tradeoffs and compromises inherent in these systems. You have to look at them yourself.


Good luck.

 

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Don't forget. You can always buy a Cygnus depixelating lens (or IMX Image Processor ) for your LCD projector. You'll see very little on a 800x600 and none on a XGA projector. I use one on my Sharp XV-DW100U XGA and have no screen door on a 8ft 16:9 screen.


Carey


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My forever in-progress Home Theatre


[This message has been edited by Carey P (edited 07-10-2001).]
 

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Don't worry this is not the case for all LCDs. If you want something cheap without the screendoor try finding an older Sony VPL-W400Q. If you don't need it for PC display then it may be what you are looking for. No screendoor thanks to the unusual staggered pixels format and very good picture quality and to top it all native 16:9 panels. I am sitting 11' from a 8' wide image and no problems at all. Any question about it just ask. Also, since it has only 400 lumens total light control is a must.

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FWIW, I thought the screen door on the XP21N I reviewed was horribly distracting from 16'-18' away on an 8' screen.


The PLV-60 in the Sanyo booth at infocomm was equally dreadful. Some reported no screen door at the pamphlet podiums, but to me it was there and annoying.


The PLV-60 in the shootout, however, didn't seem to exhibit an annoying screendoor. Knuck and I tried to go back and take a second look and also get information about how it was set up, but was out of luck.


For now I'm with RLSmith. I don't see rainbows. I do see screendoor. So it's a simple choice for me.


--Les
 

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Are you sure of the model number on that Sharp? I think that you may be talking about the XV-Z7000U LCD projector. While it will accept HDTV signals, it has to scale them down since the projector's native resolution is 800 x 600. I have one of these in my home right now, set up on a 45" x 80" 16:9 screen. While I occasionally notice the screen door effect (from 12 feet back) it's usually only on really bright scenes.


Unfortunately this has always been an LCD issue. However, it's not nearly as bad as it was even a year or two ago. DLP's exhibit much less of the SDE than LCD's and they are coming down in price. The higher resolution LCD's (Sony 10HT and Sharp 100) also exhibit a less noticable SDE but at a higher price.


For me the Sharp 7000 works out just fine. Every year there will be something better and cheaper than there was the year before. I wanted a big picture and that's what I got. The compromises are minor and the price was right for me right now. Next year something nicer will be out for the same price but I'll have been enjoying my theater for a whole year.


Anyway, I find that the best thing to get rid of the SDE is to put in a really good movie. If you really get wrapped up in the film the flaws of your system are much less apparent!
 

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Those of you who have problems with screendoor effect, do you know what your best corrected vision is?


I think the biggest difference between people is that some have much sharper eyes than others. Normal corrected vision can vary quite a bit between individuals, from 20-15 to 20-30. People with poorer vision won't be able to resolve as much detail. In effect, they have their own 'de-pixelization lens'.


About the only time I can think of where relatively poor corrected vision is a benefit.
 

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Screendoor effect was the precipitating reason I switched to DILA. When I get close to a transmissive LCD picture the area separating the pixels seems dark and wide and only disappears when I am so far away from the picture that I might as well be using a Crt and sitting a couple of feet away.


I use the effect at friends houses to gage the quality of the programming. If I am still annoyed by the screendoor pattern after a few minutes I know that I am not interested in the show.
 

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I have found that many times when people complain about screendoor with lcd's the source might be to blame. I consider myself a pretty critical viewer and I know that if I had visible screendoor it would drive me nuts. I am using an NEC vt540 (XGA lcd). It sort of breaks down like this dependent on source: composite and s-video input will yield screendoor, line doubler will yield screendoor, htpc=no screendoor! One of the real magics of using a htpc is matching pixel to pixel perfection with the projector and allow the computer to do the scaling. If you ask the projector to do the scaling I think the results can be less than perfect.


I watched Small Time Crooks last night on dvd and saw no screendoor and the image was stunning. Now if I can just find that perfect color of grey... http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by JP:
htpc=no screendoor!
I did not have the same experience with the XP21N.


I found the screendoor distracting through HTPC. I also found text (times roman I believe) was difficult to read, standing 16' - 18' back from an 8' screen, because it was muddied by the screendoor.


--Les

 

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I'll second what CareyP had to say. The Cygnus lens eliminates the screendoor effect. I've used this lens on several different projectors now and it is truely magic. Yes, it takes a while to get it adjusted (I mean, literally an hour of extensive tweaking). But once it's adjusted properly, it's nothing short of incredible. Do a search in this forum for some pictures posted by Don Stewart a while back. Yes, the lens is expensive, but so is the price difference between a good LCD projector and a CRT or DILA.


Also, to agree with what has been said, don't bother evaluating 800x600 resolution projectors. The Cygnus lens still does a good job with these projectors, but if you see one in a show room without a Cygnus lens, you will hate it because of the screen door. The newer 1366x768 resolution LCDs (Sony 10HT, Sanyo PLV-60) are *much* better in a show room, and truely amazing with the lens.


Given the high brightness, easy setup, low cost, tweaking for deeper blacks, and the Cygnus lens for the screendoor, I'll take an LCD projector anyday.
 

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htpc=no screendoor!



The screen door is independent of the source. A single solid color (e.g. the solid blue displayed by the projector when there's no source at all) will still show the screen door.


I think many people confuse screen door with pixelation, which is something entirely different. Pixelation is affected by the processing prior to the projector.


I couldn't deal with the screen door on the LCD either, but the HTPC did wonders in reducing the pixelation.


- Chi


 

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I saw screen door on just about everything at Infocomm except for the LCOS/DILAs. I was much less sensitive to it before I started the addictive HT thing.


I'm beginning to see screen door while driving at night. Maybe its burning into the back of my brain.


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Ken Elliott
 

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I have a PLV-60, and I believe I have gotten rid of the screen door effect from my viewing position. It really is true, alot of screen door has to do with the relation of image height to viewing distance.


I will say it's a quirky projector, but I am happy with it.

It's my first projector of course, but it looks close to the poorly setup runco's at my local overpriced A/V store.


-Dan
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by kelliot:

I'm beginning to see screen door while driving at night. Maybe its burning into the back of my brain.
Ooooooh, you got it baaaad http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif



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Last year, when I was shopping for a XGA (1024x768) LCD projector, I found that screen door can vary WIDELY depending on the brand.


Some units showed screen door in extremis (generally I thought the Sony models had more apparent screen door); others showed none at all at a reasonable viewing distance.


So -- per the usual -- shop around and compare.


Ken: Interesting about your night vision condition. As a fellow SoCal freeway driver, myself, I'm thinking that a screen between me and the other drivers might not be such a bad idea... :)
 
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