Stewart GreyHawk Luxus ScreenWall Reviews

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Latest Reviews

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Stewart GreyHawk Luxus ScreenWall

“I bought a GreyHawk projector screen from Stewart's a...”

Written on: 21/10/2002 by Edward. (1 review written)

I bought a GreyHawk projector screen from Stewart's a year ago. It always seemed a little dark but Stewart's said this was THE screen to use with DLP projectors. That was barely true. I've since been told these things need at least 2000 lumens.

Of the 181 DLP projectors currently listed on projectorcentral.com, only 64 are rated at 1500 lumens or more - and some of these entries have come in this year. More than half of these are priced at $50,000+, so we can assume they don't make up the bulk… Read Full Review

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45914_Homer.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 24/10/2002

Stewart's attitude is poor - very greedy. I sold my Stewart after 6 months - haven't looked back.

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Accordguy's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 17/01/2004

Well, I looked at the options for screens and couldn't believe how expensive they were!
<br>
<br>I already had a 4:3 roll-up portable slide projector screen with white matt on one side and silver pearl on the other and tried that out with my new Sanyo PLV-70. As it's a 2100 lumen projector, both surfaces were way too bright and the black level was poor. I even experimented with wearing sunglasses and putting smoked glass in front of the projector! It was only projecting a 65 inch diagonal. I have a 100w ceiling lamp on a dimmer to provide bias light and so I can see to find my drinks in dark scenes!
<br>
<br>I came to the conclusion that the best thing would be a grey surface of some kind. Luckily, I live in a modern appartment and the walls are made of perfectly flat and smooth plaster board. I tried projecting on to the existing wall that was a light blue shade and apart from the blue cast to the image it looked pretty good so I went to the hardware store and ordered a (roughly) 70% grey matt paint and painted my wall grey! Dulux have an in-store paint mixer that uses a white base and then adds dyes by computer to make any shade you want.
<br>
<br>Total cost £25 (about $45). The tricky part was painting the wall evenly and removing traces of brush strokes - about 4 coats were required with careful randomised directional painting and soft pads (brushes leave hairs behind) and I had to be careful about bits in the paint or other 'blobs'. But the results are very good and I'm happy. If I did it again I'd maybe hire a spray gun to air-brush the wall for an even smoother finish.
<br>
<br>The Sanyo suffers from poor blacks (like most LCDs) but it's ace is it's brightness. With so much light reserve you can use a grey screen to darken the blacks and the whites are still dazzling (I now project in low bias light with a 7ft 16:9 image diagonal). I went to my local multiplex yesterday and was pleased to discover that the image there was darker than at home and the black level not that much better - from film! I'm now thinking that I could re-paint the wall an even darker shade of grey (maybe as low as 50%) and get better results with the bias lighting off.
<br>
<br>I blacked out my living room window with black card but I can have normal daylight come in and if I zoom the image down to it's minimum size it concentrates the projector light enough to make normal TV watching ok. The grey screen helps here as well because it does not reflect the ambient light so much.

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Pullin's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 13/12/2003

I just bought the Sanyo PLV-Z2 Projector. I don't know if I should buy the Greyhawk or Firehawk. I am putting blackout shades on the windows and french doors. painting walls a dark mat finish. Projector will be mounted 11' from screen. My eyes will be 14.5' from screen. I was thinking about a 92" screen. Can anyone help. Please
<br>Tom

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Evadr1's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 08/10/2003

I also am considering ordering an Optima 5700 and am now considering screen choices built around this. My throw distance is approximately 13 ft. as well, little ambient light. Saw a Stewart firehawk 100" screen demo at a dealer, using a 600 lumens domino projector from a distance of 9 ft in very low ambient light and the image looked terrific! As the 5700 puts out 1000 lumens, it will be used in little ambient light room, from a throw of 13ft. on a 100" inch screen, what makes sense? I like bright, but not washed out look-
<br>
<br>thanks-dave

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Nagyg's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 07/10/2003

Rollie,
<br>THANKS for your EXCELLENT help!!!!
<br>Gerhard

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Rollie's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 07/10/2003

Hi Gerhard,
<br>More gain is not always better. Especially when the throw distance of your projector is not that big. A high gain and a short throw distance will give hotspotting. That is: the screen is not evenly lit and shows a white spot of the projectorlamp. And that surely is not what you want. Stewart also advises to project at least from a distance of 1.6 times the screen width when using a Firehawk!!!
<br>
<br>First I would recommend that you read the review of your projector on www.projectorcentral.com
<br>Because they give some advise about how to use the projector! (remember however that they always use a 100 inch screen, and place their comment in this perspective!)
<br>
<br>Your room description resembles my room!!! I assume that your seating is at approximately 9 or 10 feet from the screen?! Because sitting 1.5 times your screen width away from the screen is said to be the ideal viewing distance. I would not sit closer to the screen because then you can't see the whole screen without moving your head. And watching a movie as if you are watching tennis is not very nice!!! (You can use some colored tape to put the different screen sizes on the wall and see what's looks best for you!). If you are confident that the 82 inch screen is perfect for your roomsize and viewingdistance, you can decide what screenfabric you need!!!
<br>
<br>Because the infocus 5700 really gives 1000 lumen after calibration, it is brighter than some of its competitors! So you have to take the brightness in account when selecting a screen.
<br>
<br>I went to a couple of projector dealers and measured their screen sizes. And compared their projector setups with my situation at home. After calculations I noticed that I liked a picture in a darkened room that is approximately between 30 FtL and 40 FtL. If the brightness came in the range of 50 FtL and above I thought it was to bright to be comfortable to look at (especially the whites become very white in a darkened room!).
<br>
<br>If i were you, I would only use the projector in the darkend room without the little ambient light. This is because it all ambient light lowers the contrast of the image. (blacks become less black en details get less).
<br>
<br>Calculation:
<br>82 inch screen - approximately 6 foot wide and 3.4 foot high. A 20.4 Square feet!!!
<br>1000 lumens.
<br>A grayhawk: 0.95 gain
<br>1000 x 0.95 / 20.4 = 46 FtL
<br>A firehawk: 1.3 gain (AND advise from stewart to have at least a projectiondistance of 1.6 times the screen width!!!!!)
<br>1000 x 1.3 / 20.4 = 63.7 FtL
<br>
<br>When you have off-white walls, you can be sure that some of the light will bounce from the screen to the wall and back to the screen.
<br>Which gives the same situation as using some ambient light!!! It lowers the effective lightoutput from the screen.
<br>
<br>In other words... because of "ambient" light your projector has to put out more light to get the same image. (or the inverse... you effectively don't see the 46 FtL but see for example 40 FtL because 6 FtL is lost because of reflections!)
<br>
<br>I hope I have explained the last point in a clear way!?
<br>Conclusion: I think, that if you take a grayhawk... Stewart is right! You will have more than enough brightness coming from your 82 inch screen.

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Nagyg's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 06/10/2003

Rollie,
<br>I just ordered the InFocus 5700 (1000 lumens) and I am totally confused about what screen to get: The InFocus dealer told me to get the FireHawk ("the more gain the better"). Then I called Stewart and was told to get the GreyHawk. My screensize will be 82 inches, 12 ft throw-distance and little to no ambient light. The rather small room (13x13) is painted in a flat off-white. I personally prefer very bright on a normal TV. Do you have a recommendation?
<br>Thanks,
<br>Gerhard

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Fineproperty's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 23/09/2003

First post, buying a new screen...
<br>
<br>The comment was made a few posts up (almost a year ago) about the Da-Lite Cinema Vision and CV High Contrast as an option to Firehawk and Grayhawk. Anyone have a recommendation for my InFocus 7200? Location is with ambient light, even at night, because it's a living room/great room setup. The 7200 is 1000 lumen projector, but there are two power level options, so it can be turned up for daytime use to the 1000 lumen level, I think it's 600 video optimized in regular mode.
<br>I'm open to recommendations (besides waiting for the 7205 to come out :-).

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Rollie's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 16/09/2003

Come on people!!!!
<br>A lot of people here are judging and giving comments by what they have read! As i told before... NEVER judge a projector (OR product by the way) by its specs!!! Just go and see a grayhawk (or firehawk of other) screen with e.g. the SIM2 HT 200 at a retailer. AND watch it in the same conditions a you have at home!
<br>I have seen the combination of a 92" grayhawk screen with the 800 lumen SIM HT 200 in a darkend room with a little bit of ambient light. And the picture looked great! Deep blacks, real colors and more than enough light to get a livelike picture. By the way... I haven't seen the comment on stewarts website that says they where wrong with there new screen!!! The only thing you've got to keep in mind is that YOUR SPECIFIC situation (amount of ambient light, screen size, projector lumen output, angle of viewing the movie, picture quality of your DVD-player or other sources, etc.) is the real decidive factor in choosing the right screen. And if you read the reviews that are also posted on the Stewart website you can also see that YOUR choice of screen depends on more than having a DLP projector!!!!!! Having a DLP projector doesn't mean that you HAVE to take a grayhawk or Firehawk screen. I have seen a lot of screen and projector combinations the last year... and I am ABSOLUTELY buying a Stewart Grayhawk screen, because in MY SITUATION it will ABSOLUTELY give the best video experience I can imagine.

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Davidpritcharduk's Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 15/09/2003

Stewart's web site recommends the firehawk for DLP
<br>basicly admitting they messed up
<br>
<br>I got to feel sorry for you, and wont be buying a Stewart

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116509_Rollie.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 17/07/2003

Indeed!
<br>All projectors have less lumen output when optimized for video. However, some projectormanufacturers have very realistic lumen output rates. For example Epson has rated the TW100 at 700 Lumen and that is also about the amount of light that really reaches your screen after calibration. However Sony for example has rated the HS10 at 1200 lumen, while after calibration for video you get something around 400 lumens!!!! (See also projectorcentral.com for reviews and comment about this subject!!!)
<br>
<br>It is therefore often said to NEVER buy a projector because its specifications look good on paper!!!!

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Looking For Value.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 16/07/2003

I would like to add that when using the calculation for Foot Lamberts might check to see if the lumen output of your projector is the same or reduced when optimized for video. From what I've read that in most cases the lumen output can drop, sometimes by 50 percent.

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95416_Andy.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 06/05/2003

i have a mitsubishi XD300U DLP, 2100 lumens , this will be on a 60x80 inch screen i have been looking at the firehawk but now not so sure after reading your comments on the greyhawk ??
<br>i assume my calculations are correct ? -:
<br>6.6ftx5ft=33 2100x(1.35(firehawk))=2835 / 33 = 85.90 ???
<br>

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76711_Craig.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 02/03/2003

Guys,
As a Stewart and Sim2 Dealer, I will tell you I have all three Screens here and we are testing them with much detail.. We have been doing this for a few days and will continue till friday..
<br>
<br>The HT300 Plus is totally awesome. It's the best looking projector out currently without spending 6 figures.. We carry Sharp and other but the Sim2 is very very good.. So far the Grayhawk looks best to us, We are going to spend a bit more time with the Studiotek 130 this week.. I am questioning the Firehawk as I see a smoother more filmlike image on the GRayhawk..
<br>
<br>More to come..
<br>
<br>Ps.. If you need Sim2 or Stewart products, I have the best prices and services in the country.
Thanks
CRaig
732-616-1010

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75436_Rollie.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 25/02/2003

I couldn't find the lumen output of the sim2 ht300+, but it should be comparable with the 250. Therefore I think it will be in the vicinity of 1000 Lumen. That is plenty of light for a darkened room.

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75066_Frank.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 23/02/2003

I think you'll probably be OK with a firehawk although I've heard increasingly about grey screens having an adverse effect on colours.
Just keep in mind that the premium you pay of a Stewart gets you a well-made screen but they are well known for their greedy after-sales policy.
Another company you might like to consider is Draper. I've not used them personally but I've not heard anything bad about them either.

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74182_Dana.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 19/02/2003

Question after reading your comments, i'm starting to see the light. I have a sim2 HT300+ DLP worried on a 95 inch firehawk screen if im going to see the picture, or if I should look into another screen. Not an Audio file, i don't even know how many lums my projector is. Help

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71992_Edward.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 10/02/2003

Many thanks for you useful views, Rollie. The ambient light I’m talking about comes from the lights over an aquarium in an adjoining room. It provides enough light so you can see furniture but not enough to let us see a DVD case or a remote that isn’t directly in the doorway. So, it's not a major contributor to the problem. I take your point about the need for Greyhawk when someone is faced with 2000+ lumens. However, as a percentage of the projectors available even now, this sector of the market is very much smaller than that for projectors of less than 2000 lumens. So, what was Stewart talking about when they recommended the Greyhawk as THE screen for DLP? This is why I say they were misleading in their claims – and if they know the market as well as they should, they were deliberately misleading. I know what you mean about blacks. The contrast ration of the DWIN is about 500:1 where the new chip DLPs do 1000:1 or better. The Sim2 was great in this respect – but bright was not as bright as I would have expected and not as bright as those with more HT300+ would have expected. If it's not the projector or ambient light, what can it be? I would have been very pleasantly surprised to have Stewart replace the screen fabric for nothing. I would have expected a modest charge – $500 plus shipping as a maximum. Instead, they want me to ship this unit back to their factor in the US and wait for them to replace the fabric and ship it back to me. Owl’s retail price on a 100” screen is approximately the same as Stewart charges for replacing the fabric. Replacing the motor as well is not really a relevant issue – these motors are designed to last for many years. I told them I was quite happy to accept a refurbished unit rather than wait for my unit to be replaced. It didn’t help at all. My setup performs so badly that large sections of many movies are not visible – try something like Interview with the Vampire for example. The rays aren’t reaching the retina so either I spend around $50K for a 2000+ lumen projector or I get a screen better suited to typical DLP projector outputs. In the same situation, would you still feel that you hadn’t been screwed by Stewart?

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69564_Rollie.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 01/02/2003

Dear Edward, your problem is still on my mind! Therefore I have a couple of questions. The first question is: Is the room that you're in dark or do you project in a daylight situation? I ask this because you mentioned ambient light. The earlier results from the calculations are only satisfying in darkened rooms. If you work with ambient light, the situation is completely different!
<br>I do know that if you want to project in a daylight situation, a lot of light from your projector is "lost". Therefore in daylight conditions, you indeed need at least (the by you earlier mentioned) 2000 lumen!!! It's like this... normal daylight conditions are about 20 - 40 ftL, therefore if you want to have a satisfying image (which is 30 ftL in a dark room for me! like i mentioned before!) you have to have a projector that delivers both the ambient light AND the light you want your image to be. In this case 30 + 30 = 60 ftL (the first 30 ftL is the mean of 20 – 40 ftL ambient light! And the second 30 ftL is the brightness of the image). A projector with 2000 lumen output can deliver an image this bright on a 100" screen. But a PROBLEM arises if you use this same combination at night! The amount of light from your screen is so high that you have to watch movies with the lights on at night. Because in the dark the image is far too bright to be comfortable to watch. My second question is about that you told us that in ambient light conditions the grayhawk turned dead compared to the Owl. Why is it so important to compare the grayhawk and Owl with ambient light? As you probably know, a projector can't project blacks. If you want the color black, you project nothing! Therefore the color of your screen is the color of the blacks! This means that the darker the room the deeper the blacks. And darkening the room has also a positive effect on the contrast ratio, which becomes higher! I couldn’t find the gainfactor of the Owl screens, but it seems to me that the Owl screen has a higher gain! This is the only logical explanation for the perceived higher brightness. If you want to project a satisfying image in a daylight situation you are right about needing a 2000 lumen projector (DLP or LCD!). The 28 ftL that your combination of projector and screen delivers is indeed not enough for a daylight situation and will give a nearly invisible image since the amount of light coming from the screen is about the same as the light from the environment.
<br>However if this is the case, it isn’t fair to blame Stewart for misleading customers and not wanting to replace the screen for free! Because Stewart says that the Grayhawk can withstand 6 foot candles (= 6 ftL) of ambient light and is showing pictures of that. They don’t say that you can use the Grayhawk in daylight condition and still get a satisfying image! I called the authorized dealer for information about the projector (it has 1000 lumen) and screen (it was 110 “ diagonal, 16:9) that I watched before. This combination was in a complete dark room and gives 25 ftL of light. For me the picture brightness was absolutely more than satisfying!!!
<br>

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69113_Rollie.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 30/01/2003

You are right! One should learn not only from the mistakes you make yourself, but also from mistakes others make. I went to an authorized Stewart dealer to see for myself why a lot of people are enthusiastic. I have seen both the grayhawk and a matte white screen in complete dark rooms. And i must say that the grayhawk does give a less bright image than a matte white screen, therefore at first i wasn't that enthusiastic. But when you watch dark scenes like the beginning of Harry Potter (the first movie) or Gladiator you see that it does also open shadows!
For me the less bright image with the Grayhawk didn't look dim, but only a little darker than the one from a matte white screen.
But the dealer said that they didn't mind letting me use my own projector with their Grayhawk screen. So offcourse I will take their offer!!! So before i buy a grayhawk or firehawk screen, i will first take my projector to the authorized dealer and watch the combination. Because i don't want to be in the same situation as you are. I wish you good luck with finding a solution.

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69049_Edward.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 29/01/2003

Many thanks for your detailed response. It's great news when someone gives such useful information. These are calculations I'd did before I bought the equipment. I’ve just done it again now using some of your values and I get a value of 28 (1000x0.95/30.3). I agree, in theory, this should be plenty – but in practice it isn’t.
Two points remain unaltered by the figures… I saw the same model of projector (the bulb in mine is now only 160 hours old) used with an Owl screen of the same size as mine in a room with considerably more ambient light and the Owl left my Stewart screen for dead. I borrowed a Seleco HT300+ from a local store. The man set it up and said the image wasn’t as bright as he would have expected. He suggested replacing my screen. Until that point, I’d said nothing – I wanted an untarnished view from the guy. But when he made that suggestion, I just had to pour out my tale of misery at the hands of Stewart.
I was advised that the Owl uses the same motor and actuator as the Stewart but the case is not made of the same thickness steel. The screen doesn’t have the same tensioners along the side but the whole unit retails in the UK for around the same money that Stewart want to change just for replacing my Greyhawk fabric with Firehawk. To make matters worse, they want the old one back first rather than send out a unit on exchange –which would minimise the impact on the not-so-valued customer.
The points still stand – if you pay a premium for a Stewart screen, you should not expect a premier after-sales service. And when there is a problem that is almost certainly attributable to their product, don’t expect a sympathetic response from them. I could go to the effort of getting a big Owl screen installed in my lounge and trying out with my own projector using the same DVD, but I really don’t think it would help solve the problem with my exitsing screen. Stewart has my money – I doubt they give a damn.
If you buy a Stewart, I hope your experience of them is a lot better than mine. If it isn’t, you should kick yourself for not learning from someone else’s mistake.

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68666_Rollie.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 28/01/2003

My first question is: What do you mean by "the screen seemed a little dark"?
If you mean that the image is not bright enough I can explain how you can higher the brightness.
If the image is not bright enough, you don't have enough light coming from the screen. Yeah... duhhh... I hear you say! But what can you do?
If you have too little light coming from the screen, it can have 3 interconnected causes:
1) The projector has not enough light output
2) There is (a lot of) light in the room
3) You have a screen with the wrong gain.
They all come to the point that the light from the projector doesn’t come to the viewer! If you change one of them, the image will get better.
But before you buy a screen you have to calculate what the light output is from your combination of screen and projector. Because the combination of your projector and screen is a delicate one!
The light output from your screen is measured in Foot Lambert.
Calculation:
(screen gain) x (projector output in ANSI LUMENS) / Sqft of screen = Peak White level measured in Foot Lamberts or ftL.
As a rule of thumb you can have in mind the following peak white levels:
Televisionset - 32-35 ftL
Cinema - 11-12 ftL
Room with controlled light (=dark room) - at least 8ftL
Room with ambient light - 12+ ftL
These last numbers for the room are very personal. I myself prefer a lot of light, comparable with a televisionset, in a dark room. The numbers that are mentioned for the home theater rooms are far to dim for me...
For me, the image isn't sparkling and alive if you have only 12 ftL of light.
So if you calculate the perceived brightness, you can see if you need a brighter projector OR another screen (size or gain).
For the calculation you need:
- Your projectors lumen output
- The screen height x width = square feet of screen
- the screen gain.
e.g. situation Epson TW100 LCD projector and 16:9 Grayhawk 82" screen
lumen output: 700 !!!
square feet: 6 x 3.4 = 20.4
screen gain: 1.3
700 x 0.95 / 20.4 = 32,6 ftL (=the equation i mentioned earlier)
If you do the same with a 16:9 Firehawk 82” screen, the result is:
700 x 1.3 / 20.4 = 44,6 ftL
If you pick a 100” screen the screensize is: 4.1 x 7.4 = 30.3 Sqft
If you make the same calculations for the Grayhawk and the Firehawk, the results are:
Grayhawk: 700 x 0.95 / 30.3 = 21.9 ftL
Firehawk: 700 x 1.3 / 30.3 = 30.0 ftL
These numbers are more than satisfying. And NOT only on paper, but also in REAL life.
If you have calculated your own situation, you can easily see WHAT you have to do to make the amount of light from your screen higher! Darken the room, you need less light output. Or change your choice of screen or projector.
Have fun!

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67591_Edward.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 23/01/2003

Thanks for the advice.
That much might be too much for me. The DWIN is not so dull that it needs it.
My objection is to Stewart's "take the money and run" attitude when there is a problem with their product. If my screen was a car it would have been the subject of a product recall - or legal action over the misrepresentation of its fitness for purpose.

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Say.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 22/01/2003

There is 20 gain screen, world brightest screen.
For more details, Review www.20xscreen.com.

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49913_Edward.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 10/11/2002

I was given useful info about Greyhawks by a professional HC installer after a demo using the same DWIN Transvision projector I'm using and, like me, on a 100" 16:9 screen with some ambiant light.
He said the Greyhawk was intended to tame the high output DLP projectors. He suggested that I talk to Stewart about getting a Firehawk screen - all I'd be doing was changing the screen fabric, so it should be my cheapest solution and give me 40% more light in the eye. With any other company, this would probably be true but not with Stewart - the premium you pay to buy the product in the first place doesn't buy you into a better after-sales service arrangement at all. On the contrary, I got the feeling that they wanted to see if they could screw me again.
Stewart screens are well made but in important areas like putting rays into retinas, they're not so good. I was also warned about the highly directional reflectivity of some of their other screen fabrics too - if you aren't right in front of it, the image is quite dull.
I can't comment on the Da Lite screen from experience but for the price, you could probably buy two Stewart screens anyway. In short, you are putting much less money at stake. Good luck.

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Batdorf9.'s Response to Edward.'s Review

Written on: 10/11/2002

Could you give us a bit more information. what projector are you using? How large of a screen? Is your room dark or is there some ambient light?

I'm currently trying to figure out what sort of screen to get for my nec lt260. It's rated at 2100 lumens. I'm still trying to figure out what sort of screen gain to get. Currently leaning toward a da-lite screen with the 1.1 gain high-contrast cinema vision screen material.

Here's what da-lite has to say about it:
High Contrast Cinema Vision
A smooth, gray, vinyl finish surface for moderate output LCD and DLP projectors. This surface improves the perceived contrast by lowering black levels and offers a moderate amount of gain. It is a flexible unsupported vinyl fabric and may be folded or rolled. Available on all models offered with the Cinema Vision surface.
Gain: 1.1 Viewing Angle: 45°

more useful info at:
www.da-lite.com
www.projectorcentral.com
-Robert

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