Projection Screen

Hi all!

I am looking to buy a projection screen to create my home theater. Does anyone know what to look for when buying a good quality projection screen with a black frame? There are so many projection screens out there but are they any good? What is a good brand or does it not matter?

Also, when you buy a projection screen, does it usually come with the black frame or where do I go to buy a nice looking black frame to go with the screen material? Does the frame usually come assembled or do you have to out it together yourself? I assume the frame will come with a user manual to show you how to put the frame together.

I installed one (see my system); had to assemble, wasn't all that difficult. Was relatively inexpensive; I'm not a videophile, so it did not matter all that much. But I get great picture quality from it!
Buying a screen is a bit more involved than You might think.

Lots of variables will narrow down the type... by whom and what size or construction (pull down, wall mount, fromt or rear PJ) and then the level is usually attached to your wallet.

Considerations such as light controled or some ambient lighting are in order too. Not too much info comes from here on the subject of projectors or screens... try the HT shack, or AV forum.

Premade, wall mounted screens come with any assortment of snap together, or bolt together frames. Some come with a velvet, or velvet-like wrap materials on them and some don't.

The Projector People usually can and will answer some questions you may have and point you to some options.

I did a good bit of research then went DIY on my screen.... 115 in. wall mounted. I'm using DLP PJ. it looks pretty good by all accounts.... before I closed off the room from ambient light and painted the room a darker color and changed the carpeting to a darker shade. Now I suspect it's gonna pop better. I bought the screen material at ebay for about $100. Some two by fours and braces at the adult toy store, HD, and for under $150 ... it'll do nicely...

in HT matching the screen to the room and PJ is important, but it'll surprise you how little it takes to provide a great show in the end.

go around and look at some of the ones out there first, read the threads on the HT sites, do some dcalling, and you'll be fine in no time.

Good luck, and have fun!
Best bang for the buck is probably at Some assembly required.

I painted my screen on the wall and it works beautifully for less than $40.

Go to for tons and tons of info on DIY and commercial screens. You'll probably hate me later because you'll end up knowing more about screens than you thought was possible.
Most of the differences in screen type and materials are obsolete if you have a dark room, a recent model projector, and only want to watch movies. I think there needs to be a good reason to buy anything more expensive than a Da-lite
white matte screen. All models have a thin black border. Side curtains are nice, but a navy blue blanket works as well.
Yes, AVS is the place to read yourself blind, but it really is not so complicated or expensive anymore, unless you want to go high end, like in audio.
my pull down screen (90') was under $100 and like Samujohn said its really questionable what some cost, new projector with reasonable lumens, controlled lights and you can use anything........even a white wall.
I got upgraditis and eventually settled on a high gain glass bead screen, there is a big difference between screens, paints and materials. If anyone is in NYC (11215) stop by to pick a 3 year old pull down Da-Lite Model C for free

How much light do you need to tolerate, what's the black level like on your projector, how much work are you willing to do, what size do you need, and how much are you willing to spend?

In a darkened room, Stewart's Studiotek 130 with a deluxe (3" border) velux (velour coated) frame is wonderful. The colors are accurate, it has a little more pop than a unity gain screen, less light goes through it and bounces off the wall behind than other vendor's 1.3 gain fabric, and it's well made. Obviously, the screen material comes separately. You pull the frame out of a long crate, install four bolts, unroll the fabric from its protective tube, and snap the fabric on the screen.

That runs about $1500 for an 87x49" (100" 16:9 diagonal).
Get a carada. I just bought a 125" wide 2.35 screen for 800. Look into 2.35 before you get a 16:9. i think you will like the difference.
The "Silver Screen" refers to the high gain screens used back in the beginnings of motion pictures because projectors had limited brightness. Inexpensive home projectors, until a couple of years ago had limited light output, so often needed the the additional contrast of a high gain screen. However, nothing is free. High gain screens cause various distortions, hot spots, color changes, etc. Like tone controls they are fun and have their uses, if understood, but most sales are just marketing to increase profits. At the point of sale the brightest picture, like the loudest speaker, will be the easiest to sell.
For a year or two, I threw my picture on wall about the same color of this yellow page, with very good results.

I purchased a Da Lite screen because I got tired of taking down the artwork on the wall every time I wanted to show a movie, and to re-hang the artwork when the movie was over. I'm able to get the room theater-dark and I have an excellent picture. My projector is very bright (3000 lumens). My screen and projector are not that expensive. I use it for movies only and some special event television like the Super Bowl or pay per view boxing events.

If you can get your room theater dark, an inexpensive Da Lite screen will get the job done nicely.

Do your homework as suggested by the members above.

Also check out the ProjectorCentral website....they have tons of info there. Also go to the Da Lite website, it is also very helpful.
I purchased a 16:9 92" 1.0 Gain Fixed Projection Screen by Accuscreen on ebay for $216.00 delivered. It has a 2" Velvet Frame around the screen. It took 20 minutes to assemble and looks and performs identical to the screens that Best Buy quoted me for $1200.00.
It is kinda nice to get audiophiles take on screens. Over at they really do complicate/digest the screens a bit far and into the esoteric...a bit like the take on "audio-freak-quality'

It is kinda nice to go over to each forum for a lump of reality on the other's obsession.