Dark Energy Abyss - 120" 16:9
Updated: Mar 8, 2019
Well, I received my DEA screen last weekend and finally found some time to take it out of the box and get it set up. It's everything I hoped it would be.
For those of you who haven't seen my other threads I had the following samples when trying to decide on a screen: - Dark Energy - Elite CineGrey 3D 1.2 - Elite CineGrey 5D 1.5
- Seymour Ambient Visionaire 1.2 - Seymour Ambient Visionaire 1.4 - Stewart Firehawk - Carl's ALR - Elite CineWhite - Carl's Flexiwhite
When I had all of the samples on the wall I found myself leaning toward all of the brightest samples as my favorites. My front runner for a while was actually the CineGrey 5D 1.5 gain material, so the .9 gain of the DEA didn't seem like it would work out.
Now, I'm not a videophile by any means, so I was just picking what I thought looked best relative to other samples. The problem, I've learned, is that I tend to gravitate toward the brighter colors because they seem to provide more of a pop and make the lower gain screens look very dull when right next to each other. My biggest beef was how dingy the whites looked.
However, after some time doing more reading and talking to @John Schuermann I realized I needed to focus more on the black levels of the screens than on the overall brightness. After all, your brain only has black as a reference (the velvet border) during most viewing, so even a 'not so pure' white will look white. I am very glad I took the time to evaluate samples again.
Last night when I finished building the screen I leaned it up against the wall and shot an image onto it from my Epson 3500. It looked amazing. I pulled my other samples back out and hung them on the screen. No contest the DEA looked better. The white was so washed out it was barely watchable in comparison.
I took a quick video and will share it for those interested. Now, video isn't a great way to get an idea of screen performance, but I'll share it anyway. Shot on my iPhone, 4 not recessed 60w bulbs on, PJ on a chair, screen leaning against the wall...yadda yadda.
I do have a few vertical bands on the screen that I let @stephen77 know about and it sounds like a simple fix (need to tension a bit more on the sides). Unfortunately I won't have my screen wall done for another couple months. I stayed up way too late last night watching everything I could. Looking forward to trying it out with my Epson 6040 that showed up yesterday.
I had a chance to do a little daytime viewing with the DEA screen. Obviously this isn't its final resting place, but I want to make sure I give it some good testing before I get too far along. Still looks pretty great in my opinion. I still think the Ambient Visionaire 1.1 is a solid contender. Blacks are better with the DEA. Overall image brightness is better with the Seymour. I don't think you could go wrong with either. Seriously though, the difference between these ALR screens and white screens is night and day.