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Topic: Just got a UST. Make a screen?
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Joined: Sep 7, 2022
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Hi there. I think I want a 110" screen that I can hang from hooks when watching.
Clearly I need a fixed frame. I don't really want to build a frame even you can buy for $100 and possibly paint it?
Is that a good idea? Is there a screen I should consider? is there a decent ALR paint that's not just hype?
I talked to the guy making the crystal edge tech paint and with 15 yrs doing it he says his is best.
Please point me in a decent direction.
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If I needed a screen, I would first consider those from Silver Ticket on Amazon. The price is really solid on a well reviewed, well tested, and solid screen.

If you need ALR, forget about paints. They really don't (and can't) work. You can have dark screens with reflective materials in them, but those are basically positive gain grey screens, they aren't actually ALR. ALR screens reject light from certain angles and require a longer throw lens to work properly unless they are built for ultra-short throw (UST) projectors. ALR screens have several layers applied, including a special optical layer which works to eliminate light from the sides. Some reject light from the top/bottom as well.

These screens cost a lot of money because they are tough to manufacturer.

They also look like crap.
Amazing, but crap.

That is, you don't get something for nothing. In this case, the standard ALR screen always adds hotspotting, image uniformity issues, and sparkling to the image. These are severe and easily visible issues with an image compared to a standard white screen. What they give you in return is a more viewable image in a brighter room and much better contrast in a bright room.

In a dark room, ALR screens add nothing to image quality and just detract from it.

I consider ALR screens the ultimate Sports Bar screen. They can work really well in some boardrooms as well. They just aren't ideal for home use, but they work if you accept the drawbacks.

Since you need some specialized optical coatings, all you get with a so called ALR paint is added gain in a darker paint material. The darker paint sucks up some ambient light to help with black levels, but it has no real way to reject incoming light. It lacks that optical property. Still, in a lit room, it may be better than a white screen which will be quite washed out.

Oh, and UST/ALR screens use a sawblade optical coating that can't be replicated by ANY paint on the market. The grooves are a physical part of the surface and while UST/ALR screens are better than long throw ALR screens, they still have issues. There are ZERO paints that will come close to replicating a UST/ALR screen. Period.

Once again, in a dark room, UST/ALR screens are not necessary.
[Edited by AV_Integrated on Oct 5, 2022 at 10:40 AM]
AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology consultation during the build and installation process in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.
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Thanks for responding

So if I get a silver ticket screen just get a regular one and keep my lights dim and the UST will look good?
So buying a paint like crystal edge which has so many video reviews praising it, adds nothing to the plain screen?
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Quote (Gruvytune on Oct 7, 2022 3:22 PM):
Thanks for responding

So if I get a silver ticket screen just get a regular one and keep my lights dim and the UST will look good?
So buying a paint like crystal edge which has so many video reviews praising it, adds nothing to the plain screen?

I'm not sure how many videos are out there which aren't from the company itself and are by professional reviewers. It's absolutely vital that you only look at reviews from people who know what they are talking about.

For some (fairly weak), consideration, please look at this video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IbYUMfOSe94

I don't think this video shows what's going on, but indicates that Crystal Edge may be a lot more hype than actual product development.

It is also worth noting that websites like AVS offer many DiY paint formulas that include some 'darker' shades of paint to help compete with ambient light.

Please take a look at this page. It is just a one shot using about a 500 lumen projector on a 106" diagonal gray screen with overhead lights that are zoned up. It shows how ambient light impacts on screen image and contrast.

http://www.avintegrated.com/lighting.html
AV Integrated - Theater, whole house audio, and technology consultation during the build and installation process in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.