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Projection Screens Technology Showcase

Mike Keadle looks at the latest screen offerings.

Projection Screens Technology Showcase

Aug 4, 2011 11:04 AM,
by Mike Keadle

Custom Display Solutions VistaPlex 70

Today, projection screens are often cast into the shadows of the latest plasma, LCD, or LED monitor. More often than not, that razor-thin, ultra-bright display has more of a wow factor than an “old-fashioned” projection screen.

Projection screens are not altogether out of the running though when it comes to new, hip, and trendy styles. The latest screens offer many distinct advantages in the AV systems that are installed today. They offer a variety of shapes, sizes, and surfaces. Not only are some capable of displaying the latest 3D video, or conforming to every curve and twist the designer imagines, they also provide a distinct advantage to many displays—size.

The projection screens in this year’s showcase offer sizes that far exceed the largest flatpanel display. They also offer a much lighter and portable pico option to go along with the trendy pico projectors used by many travelling business men and women.

Here are the latest offerings from some of the leading projection screen manufacturers.

The new VistaPlex (VPX) 70 rear-projection coating from Custom Display Solutions was specifically designed for simulation and image blended environments. It is composed of “rare earth” micro alloys, which are suspended in a proprietary mixture and applied to the surface of high optical quality acrylic or polycarbonate substrate. This coating design provides incredible brightness uniformity over the entire image, and very crisp image resolution. It eliminates hot-spotting even with the shortest throw projection lenses. It also provides a relatively wide viewing angle with a 52-degree half-angle rating. These factors make it particularly effective in edge-blended images using multiple projectors. VPX 70 is available in sizes up to 108”x240” and can be cut to fit any aspect ratio. It can be applied to substrates ranging in thickness from 1/8in. all the way to 3/4in. thick. The ability to be used with such a wide range of substrate thicknesses renders it one of the most versatile simulation grade rear-projection materials available.

Custom Display Solutions VistaPlex Ultra Substrate

The new VistaPlex Ultra (VPU) substrate material provides the rigid quality benefits of other rear-projection substrates, but it offers a tremendous amount more flexibility. One of the biggest benefits of VPU is its ability to be rolled up extremely tight into a drum container for shipping and moving on site. This allows a rigid material to be used in spaces that would otherwise be limited due to size restrictions trying to maneuver a large rigid screen throughout the building. VistaPlex Ultra is 3/16in. thick and can be coated with any of the CDS projection coatings. It is available in sizes up to 100”x396” and can be cut to any size or shape.

Da-Lite’s new Large Dual Masking Electrol is a ceiling-recessed electric screen available in sizes up to 18ft. wide, enabling even large venues to benefit from the ability to project two different aspect ratios. The screens use Da-Lite’s step-back masking system, which prohibits shadows around the projected image by placing the mask flat against the viewing surface. The Large Dual Masking Electrol series is available in either tensioned or non-tensioned models in many of Da-Lite’s front and rear projection screen surfaces. Masking choices are either HDTV format, which is masked to NTSC video format, or CinemaScope format, which is masked to HDTV format. Custom sizes and formats are also available.

The new HD Progressive 1.1 Perf material in Da-Lite’s lineup offers up the advantages of the HD Progressive material in an acoustically transparent fabric. It provides virtually no sound loss from speakers placed behind the screen and provides excellent image quality. It is available in either a tensioned electric or fixed-frame screen. The material provides a viewing half angle of 85 degrees and a gain of 1.1.

In high ambient light conditions, Da-Lite’s new High Contrast High Power fabric now provides a solution offering moderate viewing angles (20-degree viewing half angle) with high gain (2.4), and greatly enhanced contrast thanks to its grey base and reflective surface. High Power High Contrast fabric is available on most of Da-Lite’s electric, manual, or fixed-frame screens.

Silver Lite 2.5 is Da-Lite’s new multi-purpose front-projection material. It is ideal for passive linear and circular 3D projection due to its ability to maintain 99.3 percent of the polarized light, and the 2.5 gain which compensates for light lost in the polarization process. It is also an excellent choice for 2D images in high ambient light environments, and for low-output projectors due to its higher gain and high contrast. Silver Lite 2.5 features a 25-degree half viewing angle.

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Projection Screens Technology Showcase

Aug 4, 2011 11:04 AM,
by Mike Keadle

DNP Screens Zenith

Da-Lite’s new Studio Electrol is designed for large venues such as stages, arenas, and auditoriums. It features an aluminum extruded case in a grey finish, and is available in sizes up to 32ft. wide. The series includes a three-position wall switch and an RF remote control. Surface options include Matte White and Perforated Matte White.

On the opposite end of the size spectrum, Da-Lite’s new 30in. Pico screen offers a very portable and lightweight screen for use with the popular Pico projectors. Operation and setup of the screen is simplified with no latches or stands to fumble with. It is as easy as pulling the two case halves apart and placing the screen on a table. The native format of the screen is HDTV. Due to the simple design of the screen, NTSC format may easily be accommodated by varying how far the halves of the screen are spread apart. The Pico comes standard with Video Spectra 1.5 fabric, and weighs only 5lbs. and measures only 19in. long in its closed position.

DNP Screen’s new Zenith rear-projection screens were designed specifically for today’s high-performance projectors. The Zenith series features a gain of 2.2, more tint in the material than is typically used, and an anti-glare surface coating. These features minimize the reflected light while maximizing the contrast and uniformity of the screen. With this design, hot spots are eliminated. The Zenith series screens are designed for markets requiring larger (100in. and larger) screens such as simulation and control rooms, TV studios, and large conference rooms.

DNP Screen Supernova Flex Classic

DNP’s Supernova Flex Classic screen line was designed to target mid- to high-end meeting spaces. It has a sleek white housing, which can be mounted from either the ceiling or on a wall and features a noiseless motor to ensure smooth and silent operation. The Supernova Flex Classic uses a dark gray drop above the screen material, and is mated with DNP’s ISF-certified 08-85 Supernova Projection film. The 08-85 Supernova film contains high-contrast filters, which absorb ambient light; this delivers bright, clear images without the need to darken the room. Screens are available in 16:9 format in 84in., 100in., and 118in. diagonal sizes, and in 16:10 format in 100in. diagonal.

Draper Curved Onyx

With many applications now requiring a curved screen surface, Draper has stepped up to the plate and delivered with its new Curved Onyx and Curved Clarion series series. Standard sizes for the Curved Onyx range up to 19ft. wide. The Curved Clarion ranges in size up to 13ft. wide. Both the Curved Onyx and Clarion screens come standard with mounting brackets to attach the center of the screen to a wall and extension brackets to attach the sides to the wall. Custom sizes and custom curves are available.

Draper StageScreen

Draper’s new StageScreen was created in response to rental and production dealer requests. The screen is designed to be flown, but it also allows the use of legs on a stage. The framework of the screen provides a color-coded method of assembly, and it also allows the creation of NTSC, HDTV, or 16:10 format screens by using different sections of the frame. This allows a minimal investment in only the screen fabric in a different size rather than additional frame material to accommodate multiple aspect ratios. The framework is also over 60 percent stronger than that of a folding truss screen, and due to the design, it can be assembled in about half the time. StageScreen is available in M1300 , Cineflex, Low-Gain Cineflex, Uniflex White, M2500, and HiDef Grey surfaces.

Draper Access XL/Series E

Draper Access XL/Series V

The Access XL/Series E screen takes the familiar design of the standard Access/Series E screens and enlarges it for use in larger venues. It features the same white extruded aluminum case with built-in trim flange for easy finishing of the ceiling. Like its smaller sibling, the XL series allows the installation of the case and screen at the same time, or allows the pre-installation of the case during construction to avoid any damage to the screen surface. It is available in sizes up to 20’x20’, or to 295in. diagonal NTSC. The Access XL/Series V adds tab tensioning and is available in sizes to 18’x18’, or 270in. diagonal NTSC.

The new Insta-RP series series screen material from Elite Screens turns any glass or window into a rear projection screen. The Insta-RP is a self-adhesive film with a 2.2 gain, which can be easily applied to any glass surface. It offers 180-degree wide diffusion uniformity. The material is easy to cut and easy to maintain with periodic cleanings. It is ideal for window displays, or for creating other custom projection surfaces. Custom sizes may be created up to 3,000 meters long.

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Projection Screens Technology Showcase

Aug 4, 2011 11:04 AM,
by Mike Keadle

Stewart Filmscreens Silver 5D

Elite’s new Powermax series is the company’s latest electric screen offering. It employs a very sleek new case design, RF and IR remote control, and Ethernet control. Installation is made simple by sliding brackets, allowing positioning at stud or backing locations. The Powermax series comes in Maxwhite FG fiberglass-backed non-tensioned, or Cinewhite tensioned matte white material.

The WhiteBoardScreen Universal combines a traditional whiteboard and a projection screen. The VersaWhite finish provides a projection surface free from the glare and hot-spotting typically associated with projecting onto whiteboards. It is finished with a transparent layer of dry erase compatible material. The Elite WhiteBoardScreen Universal series is available in 4:3 format in a 58in. and 77in. diagonal, and in a 16:9 format in 87in. and 94in. diagonal. They include dry erase markers and erasers, and wall-mount brackets, which allow the screen to slide horizontally for positioning.

Elite’s PicoScreen V Series is designed for portable tabletop presentations using the latest Pico projectors. The PicoScreen is extremely light and compact, and is free-standing for easy setup.

Epson’s Duet Ultra-Portable screen offers quick and easy setup in both 4:3 and 16:9 formats. It is easily adjusted between a 65in. wide 4:3 format and an 80in. wide 16:9 format by simply adjusting how far apart the case is spread. Once adjusted, the screen may be mounted on the included floor stand, or mounted to a wall using the supplied wall bracket. When closed, the screen forms its own compact case measuring in at just 43in. long.

The ES1000 Tabletop screen follows the same design principle as the Duet—it adjusts by simply sliding the case sides apart to the desired format, 4:3 or 16:9. It accommodates up to a 50in. diagonal image, so it is perfectly sized for most tabletop presentations.

Pro Display’s Sunscreen material offers up a new and unique rear projection film. It is designed to use an offset projection angle and has a special optical filter to deflect external light. This combination provides a cost-effective screen solution capable of viewing in direct sunlight. Standard sizes range from 30in. to 74in. diagonal. Custom sizes are available.

The company’s new Switchable Smart Glass screens provide a never-before-seen combination of a clear glass projection surface and a frosted high-definition projection screen. The special glass uses an electrical transformer to apply power to the glass upon activation of the on/off switch. When power is applied, the clear glass (transparent) switches to a frosted (translucent) state, allowing for projection onto the surface. Standard sizes are available from 50in. to 200in. diagonal. Custom sizes are also available.

The new Silver 5D screen from Stewart Filmscreen provides excellent performance in both passive polarized 3D applications and in traditional 2D applications. The Silver 5D material provides exceptional performance in ratio of extinction. This provides stereoscopic images that are truly ghost free. Silver 5D is available in front projection for both fixed-frame and electric roll down screens. It is also available with Microperf for environments which require speakers to be placed behind the screen surface.

Similar to the Silver 5D in projection qualities, Stewart’s Traverse 5D material again offers excellent passive polarized 3D and standard 2D images. Traverse 5D is a neutral gray tinted rear-projection fabric. It is available on fixed frame, electric roll down, or is available to be laminated onto acrylic or glass surfaces for a custom screen design.

Stewart’s new Reflection Active 170 3D material excels in providing uniformity of the image while compensating for lost light from filters and active glasses with a higher gain. Reflection Active 170 3D is available in fixed frame, electric roll down, and glass or acrylic laminated applications.

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Projection Screens Technology Showcase

Aug 4, 2011 11:04 AM,
by Mike Keadle

Vutec SilverStar 3D-A

Vutec’s new SilverStar 3D-A projection screens provide a solution for active 3D applications. The material also works very well in more traditional 2D and HD applications. The SilverStar 3D-A material provides a higher gain design to help improve image brightness due to lost light from viewing through 3D glasses. The material also provides increased contrast range. SilverStar 3D-A is available in custom sizes and formats and is suitable for nearly any environment—NOCs, retail, theater, and even some educational venues. The panels can also be multiplexed together to create extremely large projection surfaces.

Vutec SilverStar 3D-P

The new SilverStar 3D-P material provides the same viewing benefits as the SilverStar 3D-A for passive 3D venues. It also excels in 2D and HD applications as well due to its increased contrast and higher gain. SilverStar 3D-P screens are also available in custom sizes and formats to meet almost any application need.

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