Screens, Heat, Speakers

Goo for God
Have you ever reviewed any paint-on projection screens? If so, how do they generally compare to an actual screen? Also, is there a brand you recommend? I'm thinking about going this route for my church, not a home-theater setup.

Bryan Wolff

I have not reviewed any such screen, but I suspect they need a very smooth wall to even come close to an actual screen—otherwise, the texture of the wall would be visible through the material unless it's very thick. In your application, this probably isn't as much of a concern as it would be in a dedicated home theater, so it might be a great option for you.

The only paint-on screen company I know of is Goo Systems, which makes Screen Goo in white and several shades of gray. The company sells a base coat and top coat, which might address the wall-texture problem. If the projected image will be viewed in a room with ambient light—say, during Sunday services—one of the gray colors is probably best. The picture above shows two Goo Systems Digital Grey Lite screens at the First United Presbyterian Church in De Pere, Wisconsin.

Heated Debate
I have a Pioneer Elite receiver, but the built-in cabinet for it is not deep enough. Can I position the receiver vertically without causing damage to the unit? The fan to disperse heat is located on the top of the receiver and would still be fully exposed. Also, the receiver would not be in danger of falling over. I just want to make sure that I would not be damaging the unit by placing it on its side and that it would still operate correctly.

Lisa Kendrick

Even though the receiver has a fan, I suspect it also relies on convection (that is, heat rising) to dissipate some heat. Thus, I wouldn't put it on its side. I guess it would still operate correctly, but I think it would not manage heat properly and therefore increase the potential for premature failure.

Mix 'n' Match
We are about to leap into the home-theater world and plan to purchase Paradigm Monitor 7 front tower speakers along with the matching center, surrounds, and subwoofer. Since I have a pair of B&W DM330 speakers already, is it okay to use them instead of the Paradigm front speakers and simply purchase the others? Some sales people suggest you should not mix brands while others advise otherwise. Of course, I don't want to jeopardize quality of sound.

Phil Henrich

I'm in the "don't mix brands" camp. It's important for all the speakers in a surround setup to have similar tonal characteristics, which is much easier to achieve when all the speakers are from the same manufacturer. If you want to keep the B&Ws, I would suggest getting matching B&W center and surrounds. Getting a sub from the same company isn't as important, but it is preferred. Otherwise, get the Paradigms and use the B&Ws in a separate 2-channel system.

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James M's picture

Not sure I agree with the "not mixing brands" argument. Speakers are designed to reproduce sound. If they are doing their job then it doesn't matter who makes them. Yes, a test tone will sound different in each speaker, but that is a monotone designed to calibrate sound levels etc. Also remember that the human ear hears differently from front to back and side to side, so even identical speakers all around can sound different with a test tone.Just my two cents worth.

Cujo's picture

Every speaker has a coloration. Every speaker manufacturer has their opinions on what sounds "correct". No speaker is in fact perfect but the botttom line is if you match the wrong speakers you will hear a difference when the sound pans from one side to the other. Even a non audiophile would hear it. You may get away with it and not notice but there's a reason quality theaters use the same brand for all the speakers. Trust the experts. Like you said everyone hears tones uniquely.

Guy in Saskatoon's picture

My present system does have B&W all around, but years ago when I first started into home theatre I didn't have a huge budget. I had an old pair of descent but aged Infinitys. I added a Definitive Tech centre that the aged tweeters in the Infinities greatly benefited from.In this situation, I would think that the centre needs to be the same brand as the fronts so that the panning across the soundstage is even. But the amount of sound that comes out of the rears, I think you could probably get away with a different brand without noticing much (if any) difference. All of this is of course dependant upon what system is "upstream" of the speakers anyway. James M stated that all speakers are reproducing sound and he is correct, but the speakers can only reproduce what is given to them. Some important questions here would be: "How much GOOD amp power do you have?" or "How large is the room? or "What are the acoustics of the room like?" All of these could vary whether or not

STEVE's picture

I am wondering what might cause this problem: our professional installers were connecting a Samsung blue-ray model BD-P3600 to a Harmon Karmon receiver model AVR254. Both times, the blue-ray player all of a sudden quit loading. If anything on the screen appeared, it was a jumbled mess of colors liked you flicked a paint brush a thousand times. This happened twice with the same models. (I assumed the first blue-ray was bad). I tested the second replacement unit, and it worked fine, until connected to the receiver. Can the Harmon Kardon receiver be doing something to the Samsung blue-ray players ? The receiver needs 1080p upconversion, and an internal switching ability. The blue-ray player has to have Netflix and Pandora capabilities, which many brands do not, that I have seen from the brands we sell. Any ideas ? Thanks !!

Rishi (Avsensual)'s picture

About the Samsung bluray and the Harman Kardon receiver. It appears that you have pixelated picture.The most likely causes are:-a lousy or bad HDMI cable between TV and AVR or Bluray and AVR-a dirty Bluray/DVD disc with finger prints on it-an incorrect setting on the Bluray player or AVR-a defective AVReceiverTry a different Bluray disc.