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Screen Size Advice Needed - Please!

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  • Screen Size Advice Needed - Please!

    Hi there - I would appreciate any and all advice regarding this subject and here is the background....

    I started back collecting in this most wonderful hobby of ours about 5 years ago, but having to live in just one rented room in a shared-house for the past 10 years (whilst I was the main carer for my late mother) I have, up to now, not had the adequate space and time to show any of the films that I have now built-up in my collection - second time around.

    But now that my mother has passed away (and through her generosity) I have finally, recently, been able to get out of London and relocate to the Isle of Bute off of the west coast of Scotland and am now the proud owner of a spacious two-bedroom old style tenament appartment 😊

    I'm currently sorting everything out in the appartment but have immediately earmarked the largest room to be my living-room and for it to double as my new home-cinema! 😊 This room has an alcove at one end (which is perfect for a two-projector set-up and at the other end is a fairly wide bay-window which is a natural location for a screen and will allow for a 17'-19' throw.

    Now I have already identified the free-standing, floor pull-up screen by Luxburg that I want to use (as I don't want a ceiling pull-down screen) but I need to decide which size to get, there are two sizes to choose from:

    80" diagonal display area with a 4:3 aspect

    100" diagonal display area with a 4:3 aspect

    The projectors that I will be mainly using will be:

    Elmo GS 1200; Eumig S938; Bauer T610 for 8mm and

    Elf Eiki; Bell & Howell; Elmo 16CL for 16mm

    So, finally, my questions are:

    1. Given the projectors that I will be using and the throw that I have available - which size screen should I buy?

    2. Is this the best aspect, as they also offer 16:9?

    3. Am I going about this process the right way or am I missing something/making any fundamental errors?

    As I say, all advice and help will be greatly appreciated! 😊


  • #2
    Hello Ali. What about testing with the projectors ? You could project (without film of course, to get the full light) in direction of the window (curtains closed) and get a an idea of which size would be the best for you.


    • #3
      Ali, I have about the same size throw distance as you. I use an 8' wide screen (112" diagonal). I use the Elmo GS1200 (f1.0 lens) and Elmo 16CL (f1.4 lens). Between the two options you list I would go with the 100"...
      Last edited by Joe Taffis; February 17, 2020, 09:57 AM.


      • #4
        There are many helpful web sites that cover this topic that can answer your questions, and more importantly, raise questions that you never considered. For example, see:

        Your current wish list does not mention wide screen presentations. Do you plan to show wide screen films/videos?. If you will be adding a digital video projector you will want a 16:9 screen minimum. I am on my third screen setup which I built myself. It is wall-to-wall, constant height at 2.35:1 (Cinemascope). This allows me to show everything from 4:3 to 2.4:1 with minimum compromises.

        In my opinion, there is no such thing as a screen that is too big, or too wide!

        Click image for larger version

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        • #5
          I prefer a 4:3 screen since the majority of my prints are that ratio. My 16:9 projections (from my digital projector and a couple of prints) look fine with black bars at top and bottom. I have a 6 ft. diagonal 4:3 screen with my projectors placed 15ft from the screen. I use a 25mm lens in both my Sankyo Stereo 800 and my Elmo 16CL. The projected image fits perfectly on my screen. You have a longer distance so the image can be much bigger.

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          • #6
            Hi Dominique, Joe, Ed and many thanks for all your advice 😊

            I won't be using a video projector and have very little wide-screen films in my collection.

            I have actually projected the Eumig S938 and at a 19ft throw the image is 62"H x 84"W.

            Also, and given what Joe has said, with the 100" diameter screen having maximum dimensions of 60"H x 80"W - then this would seem to be the size of screen to go with 🤞

            Once again, many thanks for all your help and support 😊



            • #7
              And now - thanks to you too Janice! 😊



              • #8
                If you are not going to be using a video projector, I would go with the smaller 80ins diagonal screen, which is 64 ins wide. My experience is that super 8mm looks much better on a modest size screen with much better brilliance, sharpness, and contrast. But for 16mm the 100 diagonal screen would obviously be no problem at all. So your best solution may be to install the 100 ins diagonal screen and consider using some masking for a smaller 64 ins wide (80 ins diagonal) when projecting super 8.


                • #9
                  Hi Paul and thanks for your advice.

                  As I already have a similar style screen, but with a smaller image area and the fact that I now have some 35 16mm feature films, I think the best option would be for me to buy the bigger screen.