Big TV or a Projector?

Now that I seem to have cleared a significant space in the Garage, I am thinking of setting up a 'Home Cinema'. Its use will be 99% for Films and the odd youtube, all played off of a Laptop, and I did have in mind a reasonable quality HD projector throwing onto an >200" wall.

However since Xmas I have also seen 65" 4K LED TV's with superb pictures for less than €1,000.

As this technology is forever improving and getting cheaper, has any other member chosen between the two systems, and if so what did you decide on ?

Bulb life is much less of an issue nowadays. Optima quotes 6500hrs for the projector I linked to (on eco mode) which, If you watched a 2 hour movie every single day would last the better part of 10 years!!

At £125(ish) for a bulb on that projector you could be looking at £12.50 a year in bulb life. I don't see a problem here.

Yo John, I mentioned it was 4K cos that’s the standard it comes with, not that I was envisaging playing any 4K media on it. At the moment 720 & 1080 BluRay is as good as I have to play on one.

Take the point on projector bulbs, which is why I’ve been watching the LED bulb improvements. I think the room size I’m using is big enough, and I am wise to the fan noise (another reason why LED is attractive)

All that said the 65”TV is still attractive as it is relatively portable, and could be used elsewhere. Bearing in mind both equipments should have at least a 5year reliable user life, so the cost per year isn’t that much whichever way I go.

David, in a perfect world you are course absolutely right, and even more so as we do have a Cinema in our Village.

However, after a days work on the House/Garden/Trekking around Bricos etc I do like to sit and chill either gazing at the Mountains or watching a good film. My timescale for doing that obviously varies on an hourly basis as does what mood I’m in to what I want to see, hence my own mini cinema is a very attractive option for me, especially as I don't have to put up with others around me sneezing, coughing and farting.

If and when our life states are much more predicable, and assuming the Cinemas still going, we may follow your advice.

I don't bloody believe it...............

Carl are you a distant relative ? The Hd141X is exactly the model I have been using as a bench mark to compare others. I would have bought one last Xmas when Richer Sounds dropped the price to £399 but I hesitated, and it was back up at £499 by the time I decided yes.

I have held back since for four reasons, firstly that the ‘space’ wasn’t ready for it, secondly that I was keeping my eye on the LED projectors as they are getting better by the day and their ‘lifetime bulb’ performance is so attractive (although the modern bulb projectors equally do seem to have quite long life bulb expectations), and thirdly that I did want to ‘see’ what the image looked like in real life before committing, and lastly that big TV’s (60+) have been getting cheaper by the day

As I say, it’s for the Garage which is truly massive, 10M wide x 8 M deep and the half which has been cleared, already has a full size 3 piece suite sat there, so the end wall would take a big area of white paint. With the doors shut it is pitch black in there so a reasonable size projection should be possible.

However, if you are saying that I’m unlikely to get good resolution over say 100” (unless I spend 000’s) then the 65” could be better deal as its liable to be 70” by the time I actually buy one……….

4K goes way beyond HD, projectors require expensive lamp changes and lamps fail when you don't want them to. DLP projector is a must if it's a big picture but a big picture requires a longer, further back seating position, have you got the room otherwise it's quite nasty to sit too close to a really big picture. Blackout of the room is essential for a projector and the fans can be a bit noisy in quite moments.

Why not support your local cinema. We live in the boonies but because of the French regard for cinema as an art we enjoy lots of film from many sources; French , Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Iranian even Hollywood and English. Film in a garage seems to lack the feeling of sharing with more than yourself the experience of film. With the advent of digital copies film is even more accessible and I'm sure your local cinema would love to increase their audience whether it be for films with sous titre or in version originale.

200" is not going to make for a very bright image unless you are thinking of spending 10 grand Tony. 100-110" is more realistic but huge none the less.

If you cannot control the light in the room get a big 4K TV, you will love it BUT if you want the added 'special' that you get from a darkened room and a huge picture you just cant beat a projector.

If I were shopping today I would look at THIS

And don't forget the sound system. Without that it is all a waste of effort.

Tony - I have an Epson EH-TW480 and it is fanbloodytastic (but my "screen" is "only" 5.5 sq metres). I bought it five years ago and have only had to change bulbs twice. I always have a spare. The price of the bulbs has dropped significantly since 2011. When I bought the Epson it was a LOT cheaper than a big TV. Even now, at 500€, it seems a bargain. I mostly use it in the evening, so light is not really a problem, but watching the news during the day is possible without having to "blackout". The documentaries on TF3, TF5 and ARTE are stunning at that size, and movies, of course, are brilliant. Don't forget to get a home cinema surround sound system. My basic one was less that 200€ and does the job.

Hmmm, yes, just what I needed, a bit of pythagorus to shake the red wine out of the brain cells.

So you're projecting on to a ~140" screen, @ 720 or 1080 standard, and its good resolution ?, but if you had to do it all again, would you still go the projector route or get a big telly ?

Even on a big telly I would use a sound bar, I used to have a 5.1 surround system but kept being told off for not being able to hear anything past the sound cicrcle I was in, like "let the dog out" etc.......

I must admit for convenience a big telly is tempting, but having my own wide screen cinema is where I started from, and perhaps I need to do that if only to get it off my bucket list.

Don't do those "inch" things any more :-) -- it's just under 3m wide. Not sure about the resolution -- HD is all I know. (I just took a pic of the screen for your perusal.) YES - projector every time for me. The usual first reaction from visitors is "bloody hell!" In this "bachelor pad", there's no-one to complain about the noise! :-)

Have you got teenagers? Ours adored the projector and cinema evenings. They invited their friends, made popcorn, had a blast.

Thanks for the photo, I don't dispute it's big, but unfortunately it doesn't give much representation as I would like to see how good it is.

Obviously as I haven't seen what a HD picture looks like off of a projector, I am a little hesitant, especially after loitering around in Gent Casino on Friday and seeing a 60" screen which was (to me) of mind blowing resolution, to make a firm decision.

I guess I need to make the effort of finding an outlet which has a demonstrator, in France or the UK, and take a look.

A projector does not pop like a 60" TV but when you dim the lights a little it will knock your socks off Tony.

Tony - if you're passing, and you can't get a demo elsewhere, drop in, and have a look.

Thanks Carl & Roger for your thoughts.

Point noted,,but my help and aid to Teenagers is long past, its my last good years that I need to indulge.

Okay I'm holding out till I see a really big screen, but today in the letter box was the usual weekly ads papers and I see that Geant Casino are selling (Weds 13th only) a Techwood 55" LED HD Telly for €415 which is dirt cheap, say for your Bedroom wall if nowhere else.

Might even get one myself as a stop gap...................