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Does a Projector Screen Make a Difference? – Projector Screens



Does the projector screen make a difference

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Often when buying a projector, we are usually upsold with projector screens and we often wonder if getting a projector screen will make a difference or maybe you are just upright thinking of getting a projector screen.


Wonder no more, as we will answer your question as to “if projector screens make a difference” and why.

Also check out our article on How you can make your projector louder.


Let’s talk about picture quality difference…

This article will compare the difference (and how that difference came about) between a piece of cloth tied to the wall, a painted wall and a projector screen.

The question that people might be asking is that, is it really necessary to have a projector screen, or is it another useless item on our shopping cart or can a painted piece of wall be enough?

Let’s be honest, this piece of equipment can be a bit pricy.

So with that said, the question we must ask is….

Does the projector screen really make a difference?

Yes! They do!

The short answer to the question is yes! Projector screens does make a difference in the quality and brightness especially, do read on to find out as to what sets projector screens apart from.


What makes a projector screen better than a wall or piece of cloth?

To get straight to the point, an image thrown to a projector screen, is more brighter, is high definition and is not washed away  by on coming light, something that a cloth, wall and other types of screens cannot match but can get close to.

High reflectivity

Firstly, a wall does not reflect light as well as a projector screen, the best projector screens are the ones that reflect as much light as possible, just as a highly reflective sheet of iron is able to show us our reflections, so is a high reflective screen.

When compared a rugged wall that is not as smooth, it can distort or blur images.

Now this comparing is assuming that the wall is not smoothened or painted, a screen high provides quality and  high definition that a wall simply provide.

Projector screens reject ambient light.

Ambient light is natural light entering the room, which we find to be irritating as it washes out the images on our TV screens and projectors mostly during afternoons.

Since ambient light is a problem that’s prevalent in projector screens, TV screens and other visual AVR equipment, this is where a perfectly researched and carefully made projector screens come in.

What they have is called ALR.

ALR Ambient light rejecting screens, work by reflecting light directly into your field of vision and throws away ambient light.

This is a concept that also works well the projector is positioned well.

Screen gains comparison of screens vs cloth

Just to emphasize my point on high screen reflectivity, another thing to note here, is that projector screens  reflectivity is measured using screen gains.

As the projector light hits the projector screen, it reflects times x amount of light greater than the light that is projected onto it, this multiple is called gain.

So a projector screen might have a gain of let’s say 1.5, so 3000 lumens (light shone onto it), hitting a screen with a gain of 1.5 will reflect onto the viewers 3,500 lumens, which is another reason why they are indeed “worth it”.

As with a cloth, there is no measurement, although this concept can also be applied to the cloth, there is simply no measurement when using them and they outright have low screen gains.

Projector screens have more definitions

As a combination of all the above factors, images shone onto a projector screen is more brighter and has more definition, meaning more resolutions as opposed to a cloth.

Projector screens does make a difference.

Making do without a projector screen

Another most common question being asked by people, is why they are expensive, they can be pricy.

So for budget minded folks, is it worth it as well to do without it?

The answer is yes, as we have discussed above the principle of light reflectivity is at work here (does that even qualify as a “principle”?), Recreating a highly reflective surface using special kinds of paint is possible.

Having a screen still does make a difference, but a painted wall be come close to that.

With that said, a carefully painted square piece of wall using specially made paint, can reproduce the effect that is needed (high reflectivity).

So with that said, for quality images purposes, a projector screen is not really necessary. 

That brings us to convenience, which should be a whole new separate article of in it’s own, but quite briefly, you get a projector screen out of the box, it can be folded away, taken wherever and is already made, something a wall lacks.


So to conclude this short piece, yes! projector screens does make a difference as makers, put a lot of money into the research and making of these equipment for use with projectors.

Part of it’s research is coming up with materials that will reflect as much light as possible which brings me to screen gains.

Screen gains as mentioned above are a measurement of the reflectivity of it’s surface, a gain of 1.5 which reflect 1.5 more light than what is shone onto it. This in turn, let’s out more high definition and bright images.

More brighter and higher definition than a wall and a piece of sheet.

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