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Thread: Retractable screens for laser & HD projectors?

  1. #1
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    Default Retractable screens for laser & home theater projectors?

    I'm thinking about installing a retractable (motorized) wall or ceiling-mounted projection screen for my music & laser studio conversion ~
    Looking for something that would be suitable for both laser graphics and home theater (1080p) projection.
    The "studio" is bit on the small size (re-purposing the bonus room above my garage), with the video and laser source only around 20 feet from the screen surface.

    Any recommendations for a suitable screen/material/color/finish that might be available here in the USA?
    Open to any suggestions for what to consider purchasing, as well as any brands / models I'd probably want to avoid.

    Thanks!

    Randy
    Last edited by Stuka; 08-17-2018 at 11:43.
    RR

    Metrologic HeNe 3.3mw Modulated laser, 2 Radio Shack motors, and a broken mirror.
    1979.
    Sweet.....

  2. #2
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    Frosted shower curtains stretched taught and held with duct tape is an effective yet cheap way to do it. There are some YouTube videos out there showing this. The pro vinyl rear screen stuff used back in the 80's was essentially that but with dark charcoal colored vinyl. It would be fine for video and okay for low power RGB laser projection. This type of rear screen methodology tended to be directional with the brightest image on-axis to slightly one side (10 degrees) either side of on-axis.
    ________________________________
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  3. #3
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    Based on what you said, you aren't going to do rear projection, but front projection.

    So a transparent screen isn't a good option

    As far as screens go:
    Elite screens makes a great motorized tensioned screen that you can get with different materials for the fabric and different gains for reflection
    They are reliable, fairly easy to install and have a good record as a company

    You could spend $$$$$ on a screen.

    So, that being said, Elite is not a Stewart or Draper, level screen but maybe Dalite quality, but they also have a much better price point.

    If I remember correctly, they have a Cinegrey which might work, but I wouldn't guarantee it.
    You need to pay special attention to the gain of the fabric for home theater which determines how reflective it is.

    Whatever you use you will be compromising something.

    You go too dark and you lose contrast on the video, Too white and its dangerous. Same is said about the optical gain of the material.
    For video most of the screens also have a "viewing angle"
    If you are too far off center the video loses quality.

    You can compensate for darker screens in video with more lumens and more contrast. (more expensive)
    You can compensate for a brighter screen in lasers by turning the power way down.

    Regarding Gain: 1.0 is equal to a whiteboard for reflection.

    https://www.projectorscreen.com/What-is-Screen-Gain

    I would go with a tensioned screen. Otherwise they look crappy after not too long from the waves in the material. The weight of the pull bar does not solve the problem with all the wrinkles.

    if you can afford acoustically transparent, it is a nice feature and allows your front speakers to be anywhere.

    In my ideal setting, I would put the screen down for video and leave it up for laser use, projecting on to the back wall with a FLAT dark paint finish.
    IMHO, that would give me the best of both worlds.
    Last edited by icecruncher; 08-19-2018 at 19:49.

  4. #4
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    Great feedback guys - appreciate the info!
    RR

    Metrologic HeNe 3.3mw Modulated laser, 2 Radio Shack motors, and a broken mirror.
    1979.
    Sweet.....

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    Lightbulb

    I don't remember which model my wife bought, but she got me a motorized movie screen a few years ago from Amazon. It's 16:9 format (widescreen), and I think it's about 9 feet wide or so. Works great for lasers as well as video from my DLP projector. Wasn't all that expensive either - maybe $100 or so?

    This one here looks very similar to the one I have.

    Adam

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    THAT, I could afford!

    Thanks!
    RR

    Metrologic HeNe 3.3mw Modulated laser, 2 Radio Shack motors, and a broken mirror.
    1979.
    Sweet.....

  7. #7
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    Bradfo69 is offline Pending BST Forum Purchases: $47,127,283.53
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    It's decent. I fell asleep to a movie on buffo's couch in front of it! He's got a great way to mount it, having a cathedral ceiling with beams in it. I suspect I'll get one in my next house, next spring. Last part of the newly redone home theater is the screen. :-)

    (And I appreciate the info icecruncher added.)
    PM Sent...

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    HAHA! I remember that visit, Brad... We were watching "The Edge of Tomorrow" (Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt) and you were crazy tired from being up all day and then driving to my place. I think you crashed and burned around 11 PM. Wonder if you ever got a chance to watch that one again? (It's not a bad flick, to be honest.)

    But yeah, that screen was easy to hang, and its big enough for video or lasers in my great room. (28 ft x 14 ft)

    Adam

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by icecruncher View Post
    In my ideal setting, I would put the screen down for video and leave it up for laser use, projecting on to the back wall with a FLAT dark paint finish.
    IMHO, that would give me the best of both worlds.
    Iím with you on this. My walls are flat beige, but they are also covered in clear glow in the dark paint. I should replace my cheap screen with a tensioned one. I also plan on making my screen DMX controller this year for this purpose. Ed Keefe made me a nice little gadget a couple years back that translates DMX commands to IR commands. I use it to control too my motorized scrim and some other devices with IR controls.

    David
    "Help, help, I'm being repressed!"

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