Which projector screen is best?
Television screen sizes continue to grow bigger. But if you truly want to have the largest image possible for your movies, TV shows and video games, you need a projector. However, you can’t just project onto anything and have the best picture quality. You need a projector screen.
The best projector screen is the Elite Screens Yard Master 2. It’s easy to set up, comes in a variety of sizes and is great for use indoors and out.
What to know before you buy a projector screen
Projector screen types
There are a few types of projector screens:
- Hanging: This is the most common projector screen as it doesn’t require any fancy setup. They usually have rings along the edges that you can hang on nails or command strips. Most are designed to be stored when not needed, but they can be left up all the same.
- Pull-down: This is a special type of hanging projector screen. The screen is rolled up inside a tube that’s hung on the wall. When needed it’s then pulled manually down or lowered electronically. They can be costly but they’re excellent for those who dislike leaving a big blank sheet on their wall.
- Stand: This screen comes with a stand to be hung on. Stands come in a wide variety of forms with different levels of stability. Indoor screens typically have less stability than outdoor screens as they don’t have wind to contend with.
- Inflatable: This is a special type of stand screen that, well, inflates. These are usually huge and mostly meant for large events such as pop-up drive-thru theaters or movies in the park. There are also smaller options for backyards.
Choosing the right size projector screen requires taking several pieces of information into account:
- How many people you intend to be screening something for. The more people, the bigger the screen needs to be.
- How big your space is.
- Your projector’s specific screen requirements. Some require smaller or larger screens for the best image.
What to look for in a quality projector screen
Some projector screens are rear-projection compatible, meaning the image is viewable from either side of the screen. This means you can hide the projector for single-sided viewing or people can watch from both sides at once. However, the rear-projected image will be flipped.
If your projector is capable of beaming high resolutions or even 3D images, then you need a projector screen capable of supporting those. Otherwise, the quality of your projector will be wasted.
Field of view
The best projector screens have a wide field of view, meaning people on the sides of the screen looking inward can see the image without distortion. The best screens have a 180-degree field of view, but 160 degrees should be plenty for most situations.
How much you can expect to spend on a projector screen
They can cost as little as $20 or as much as $250 or more. The cost mostly depends on the screen’s size and any additional features with larger and more feature-rich screens costing more.
Projector screen FAQ
Can’t I just use a white bedsheet as a projector screen?
A. If you have a basic low-end projector, then a white bedsheet is both cheaper and more than enough. However, it can greatly decrease the quality of the image if you have a high-quality projector.
How do I clean a projector screen?
A. That depends on the screen, but most can be cleaned by gently rubbing them with a cloth lightly soaked in a mixture of warm water and soap. Always double-check your screen’s owner’s manual or manufacturer’s website for cleaning instructions before you begin, or you might damage it.
Can I use projector screens inside and outside?
A. Most projector screens are safe to use inside and outside, but certain aspects of a screen can make it best for one rather than both. For example, some screens’ hanging methods aren’t conducive to outdoor setup. Other screens may not have any kind of weather resistance so inclement weather can ruin them.
The best projector screen for going back and forth is a medium-sized stand screen with some weather protection.
What’s the best projector screen to buy?
Top projector screen
What you need to know: This is a high-quality screen for a surprisingly reasonable cost.
What you’ll love: It comes in either a 16:9 or 4:3 aspect ratio and seven sizes from as small as 58 inches to as large as 135 inches. It has a 180-degree viewing angle and supports up to 8K resolution and 3D projection.
What you should consider: It ships folded and some consumers reported that the creases take time to fade away. Others were unhappy with the stakes and suggested purchasing better ones.
Top projector screen for the money
What you need to know: This is the perfect option for those on a tight budget.
What you’ll love: The screen is 120-inches in size, has a 16:9 aspect ratio and supports up to 4K resolution. It comes with command hooks and rope for set up but you can use other means such as nails or double-sided tape.
What you should consider: It’s possible to use outdoors but setup can be difficult and it doesn’t have any weather-based protections.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: If you’re setting up a big screening event in a park or other location, this screen is what you need.
What you’ll love: It comes in six sizes starting at 16 feet and ending at 33 feet. It includes a blow-up pump, a storage bag and all the ropes and stakes needed to keep it firmly secured. Two screens are also included, one each for front or rear projection.
What you should consider: The rear-projection screen has a seam running horizontally through the middle which can be distracting to some. Some purchasers suggested replacing the ropes and stakes with better ones.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Jordan Woika writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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