Projectors???

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OTIKA
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Projectors???

Postby OTIKA » Tue Oct 13, 2009 12:42 pm

hey,

I am looking at getting a projector for my basement to watch the games on. was looking for advice on brand, HD vs non HD, or if its even recomended or just a tv of some sort. thanks in advance

James

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Re: Projectors???

Postby Skippman » Tue Oct 13, 2009 1:05 pm

Depends on what you're wanting to accomplish, your budget, and how often you plan to view it.

For a good quality HD projector setup you're looking at at least $4K after you price a screen and the projector. The advantages of that are massive screen size and that "real theater" feeling. The downsides are bulb life (about 1/10th or less than a conventional DLP TV) and enviroment (light control is a must).

Given the cost of such a setup I, personally, have decided to replace my 62" Mitsubishi TV with a 65" Panasonic plamsa direct view TV. This has better black levels than LCD TV's, is the largest set one can reasonably afford, will work in all lighting conditions, and does not need replacement bulbs to run.

Now a DLP or LCD rear projection TV is much more "cost effective" in that they can be had at a fairly large size for as little at $1500-$2000 for something in the 55"+ range. The downside is you will at some point have to replace the bulb which can cost anywhere from $200-$400 a piece. I've been running a DLP rear projection TV for the last 4 years or so and have enjoyed it very much. If I wasn't a total home theater junkie I'd likely leave it alone for another couple years but I've decided I want something that has better black levels and a little sharper a picture, something plasma excels at.

If you can give me a budget point I can work up a couple ideas for you.

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Re: Projectors???

Postby KnightRid » Wed Oct 14, 2009 6:14 am

I agree with Skippman that the main thing is budget. After saying that, it also depends on what size screen you want and if you want 1080p or 720p. 1080p projectors have come down a hellin in price and you can get some of the low-mid range for under $2000. I personally would never pay $4000 for a projector unless it came with lifetime bulb replacements free of charge ;)

BLACK LEVELS ARE THE KEY!! I got a 50" plasma in my living room that blows away any LCD screen I have or have seen, but the energy requirements are not economical!! for the best black levels, you will be looking high-mid to high range and you can actually go up to, and above, $10,000

back to budget ;)

Mike

Skippman - let me give you my address to send that old nasty 62" to, so I may dispose of it for you - :rolleyes:
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Re: Projectors???

Postby Skippman » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:06 am

KnightRid wrote:Skippman - let me give you my address to send that old nasty 62" to, so I may dispose of it for you - :rolleyes:


LOL. I'm actually trying to sell it. It's been ISF calibrated using Sencor calibration equipment to be reference color levels but it IS a 720P set. That being said, realistically you'd have to sit pretty darn close to the set (less than 7ft) to notice a diffrence between 720P and 1080P. Really the advantage from 1080P comes from what's called scaling. If you have an image that's written in 1080P and try to display it on a 1080i or 720p display the video has to be reprocessed in order to display at the correct resolution. This has to be done realtime by whatever video processor you use. Generally I tend to set my equipment to output into my TV's native format of 720p. For the X-Box and PS3 this is no problem. With upconverting DVD players and BluRay players we get into comparing video processors. For example my Oppo BluRay player has a Anchor Bay video processor onboard which is considered to be one of the top performing video processors period. It's the same technology that companies like Denon and Merantz put in their $1500 players. This means that my player has better processing than the TV's internal processor so it is to my benifit to let my player handle all the scaling functions as opposed to outputing thier native resolution and having the TV's processor do the heavy lifting.

There are stand alone scalers that can be bought from companies like Lexicon and such which can scale anything before it hits the TV, kind of like a video pre-amp if you will. This is useful if you have older equipment you want to continue to use like a LaserDisc player, BetaMax, or a standard def satellite receiver. These processors upconvert the video by resampling it and outputting it at the correct native resolution of your TV and do a far better job than all but the most expensive players internal processors. The downside is they are PAINFULLY expensive costing upwards of $1000 or better.

Projectors are great for what they're intended to do. Nothing else is going to give you as large a display for the price but it's something you really don't want to go cheap on. JVC right now is king of the hill when it comes to projectors and thier Tri-Chip LCOS setups are amazing. I was seriously considering their RS2 projector as a replacement to my Mitsu but have decided that based on my needs a plasma TV will be the better choice. Projectors are great for film but were never really intended for things like video games.

I've had a 50" Panasonic 720p Plasma in my bedroom theater for quite some time now and I have to say it blows everything else I've seen out of the water. No DLP or LCD rear pro can match it's picture chrispness. No LCD TV can match the black levels it can produce. The only thing that comes close is a projector and then you're talking serious dollars. A good 92" screen alone will cost some $1000 or more. I know some people will tell you a sheet is just as good or to just use a painted wall. But for a projector you need a properlly installed, taught, reflective screen from someone like Draper in order to get the black levels and picture quality you expect out of your projector. A painted wall will not have a uniformly smooth surface and will reflect light in random ways. A sheet has very little reflective properties on it's own and can appear pourous.

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Re: Projectors???

Postby OTIKA » Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:13 am

I am thinking that at most i will be able to get away with 1-2000$( before she kills me). my plan is to pick something up on black friday so as to save the most money. i have a 61 rear project for the living room now. the light levels will be easy to control cuz there is only one window in the basement. my plan is to set up a bar, pool table, dart board and poker table to make my man cave. i was thinking it would be nice to have something down there to watch tv/ the games on also. basicly my own lil home bar. as for screen if i go with a projector i will just paint the wall white and leave it at that. figure a few coats and some sanding mabey semi gloss final coat and will be better than a screen anyway and wont have to worry about the room it would take up or rather hanging it .i guess i could always get like 2 smaller plasma or lcd and mount them high on the wall to keep them from getting fukd up but i dont know which would be better. my goal is to have the whole basement done under 5-6000$, including pool table and the bar and tv(s).

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Re: Projectors???

Postby Skippman » Wed Oct 14, 2009 11:33 am

You're going to run into a ton of problems with the projector in that enviroment. In order to get the benifits of using a projector you're going to have to keep that room DARK. Think of the last time you were at the theater. There's a reason that room is made as dark as it is. Given the description of what you're talking about I'd recommend going with a couple of large LCD TV's from Insigina or Visio as this is obviously NOT going to be a home theater.

If your dead set on using a projector keep your eye on CraigsList or eBay for a CRT projector. A CRT projector will be MUCH larger than a DLP or LCD projector and will not likely support HDTV but it will throw a TON of light making it useful in a brightly lit area like a bar. Also, you will not have to worry about bulb replacement.

As for painting the wall, I cannot stress how bad an idea this is. I suppose if you're using a CRT projector it won't be to bad but if you're going to spend the $1000+ on a projector you will need a screen. Walls, no matter how well done, are not smooth. A screen can be bolted to the wall about 1" off the surface and have a perfectly smooth, taught surface to project on.

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Re: Projectors???

Postby Sowser » Wed Oct 14, 2009 9:15 pm

Anybody try the "paint on screen" products like this?

http://www.paintonscreen.com/
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Re: Projectors???

Postby Skippman » Thu Oct 15, 2009 8:04 am

I have in the past on some custom construction stuff. It "works" in the most basic of sense.

Here's the problem. You wall isn't flush. It's just not. When you screw drywall on the studs and mud over them you are left with irregularities in the surface. The same is true of taped joints between sheets which, if you're going to make a fairly large screen, you are invariably going to cross. You can sand and sand all you want but you'll never get a truly smooth finish.

Now, I hear what you're thinking. "But Skip, my walls don't LOOK irregular!"

That's a trick of the paint. If you were to use a high gloss paint, which is what a paint on screen basically is, you'd notice these effects immediately. It's not a sheet of metal or plastic. It's a porous, chalk based engineered material. You'd likely be better off bolting MDF and painting that.

You can get a relatively inexpensive screen used. Many screens are designed to be snapped together and pulled taught then bolted to the wall about 1/2" off the surface. So it's not as if there's a ton of room involved in these things. The screen would be held about 1/2" off the wall, just enough to avoid the wall touching it and causing irregularities in the screen.

OTIKA, I'm not trying to rain on your parade here. But I want you to have the best information possible so you can make an informed decision. I shopped for projectors for 2 years before deciding they're not what I want. There's a HUGE difference between a cheap $500 Power Point projector and a quality home theater projector. You owe it to yourself to consult some local home theater stores and see the difference. I also highly recommend checking out AVS Forum. There is a wealth of DIY information there to pour through.

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Re: Projectors???

Postby OTIKA » Sat Oct 31, 2009 6:33 pm

yea decided not to go with the projector. thanks all for your input


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