The Best Projector Screen Buyers Guide For 2018

Projectors are great for home entertainment as well as professional use. In a pinch, they can be used on most walls/plain vertical surfaces with reasonable video quality. But to get the most out of your projector, be it at home or in the office, you should consider investing in the best projector screen. A screen is essential if you want the best quality picture output from your projector.

 

Best Projector Screen Buyer’s Guide

What are projector screens?

They are installations used to display images, videos, or presentations from a projector in front of an audience. The screens are made from fabric/vinyl coated with special reflective substances. They almost always have a white or grey colored surface for optimum color reproduction. They are also called projection screens.

 

Are projector screens essential to use a projector?

The simple answer is no. You can project an image on pretty much any flat, vertical wall surface. You will often get a decent image reproduction. But if you want the best quality viewing experience with a projector, then the best projector screen is mandatory.

When it comes to picture output quality, the bulk of the work is down to the projector itself. But the screening surface also plays a crucial part. Not all walls are made alike. The surface quality, color or paint used, and room ambient light conditions can all negatively affect the quality.

With the best projector screen, you don’t have to worry about the suitability of your wall. And if you plan to use your projector in different rooms, you can easily buy a portable variant for easy mobility.

 

What are the different types of projector screens?

Screens are available in a wide range of configurations. They can be broadly classified based on the following factors:

Permanent Vs. Portable Screens

Permanent screen installations are best suited for home theater rooms, classrooms and conference areas. They are also the most expensive. The fabric is placed inside a fixed frame which can be installed on the wall or ceiling. Semi-permanent pull-down versions are also available.

Portable screens are highly inexpensive and lightweight. They can be used in different rooms, and even outdoors in favorable light conditions. But you still have to worry about the packing, unpacking, and setup everytime you want to use this type of projector screen.

Size

This is entirely dependant on your space constraints and the imaging capabilities of your projector. Most modern machines are capable of throwing an image as large as 100 inches if necessary. So base your choice on the measurements of your viewing wall/area. The best projector screen for you will largely depend on this.

Aspect ratio

This is the era of widescreen and 4K video viewing. Most projectors these days employ the 16:9 (1.78:1) aspect ratio, which is also the preferred HDTV format. It will work with 4K, 1080p HD, and 720p resolution videos. These are versatile screens for modern day use.

Movie screens have a 2.35:1 format, which is why you have those black bars when you view some videos on a screen with a higher vertical aspect ratio. So if you want the best viewing experience in your home theater, look for a 2.35:1 format screen.

And if you plan to use the projector exclusively for PC based presentations, another option would be the widescreen PC 16:10 format. This type of screen is best matched with a projector that has a low native resolution, like 1280×800, 1680×1050, or 1920×1200 max.

The classic 4:3 Video format is a pretty old standard that has been around since the early days of TV. If you plan to switch a lot between old-school fullscreen and widescreen viewing, this type of screen would be a safe bet.

Square (1:1) projector screens are strictly for office use in data presentations and such. They also work well with overhead projectors.

Gain

This is a term used to describe the ability of a projector screen to reflect the light thrown at it. At 1.0 gain, the screen is capable of creating an image that is as bright as the light coming from the projector.

Higher the gain, brighter the image generally is. This is useful in situations where you cannot reduce ambient light, as the increased brightness will help create a sharper projected image.

But in low light situations, a higher gain can result in “hot spots,” which are extra bright areas in the center of the screen. So more gain is not always better in all situations.

 

Ten Best Projector Screen Reviews

Silver Ticket Products STR-235125

If you want a top of the line projector screen for your home theater with all the bells and whistles attached, this Silver Ticket screen is well worth a look. At 125 inches, it is the second largest screen from the manufacturer (the largest is a whopping 138”).

The native aspect ratio is 2.35:1 which makes it the best option for a true theater-like experience. If you don’t want the Cinema aspect ratio, Silver Ticket also has screens in the more flexible 16:9 and 16:10 formats.

With this screen, you can get crisp 4K Ultra HD video experience. 3D gaming is another area where this permanent projector screen really excels. The display uses a high-quality vinyl material to deliver high fidelity image reproduction.

The frame is made from hardened aluminum and has excellent mounting systems. Installing this screen is as easy as hanging a picture frame on the wall. The system uses a tension rod to ensure that the screen remains perfectly smooth and wrinkle-free.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

Elite Screens Spectrum Electric128X

The Spectrum Electric128X is an advanced 4K/8K enabled projector from Elite Screens. This permanent projector screen has a unique casing design that can be mounted on walls as well as ceilings with equal ease.

The 16:9 screen can be used with all modern UHD and HD projectors. But if you have anything in the short throw category, this screen is not compatible with those. The screen material is made from an all-black material. If you cannot control the ambient light inside your room, this type of screen is a better choice than white or grey screens.

The viewing angles are more than adequate at 180 degrees, and you also get an IR remote along with the package. The entire system comes ready to install, with an easy to use plug-n-play design.

The Spectrum range also includes other variants with different aspect ratios, sizes, and white/grey screens. The screens are easy to clean and maintain and has a mildew resistant finish as well.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

VonHaus Projector Screen

These VonHaus screens are optimized for home use and are perfect for watching movies, live sports, and gaming. But given their capabilities, they can also work just as well in an office setting for presentations and slide shows.

There are two size options available: 80” and 100” versions. With an aspect ratio of 16:9 these are HDTV projection screens. They can be mounted on walls as well as ceilings, thanks to a flexible mounting system.

The screen has a matte white finish, which is best suited for rooms where you have at least some light-dimming options. Combined with a 1.1 gain, this screen works well is most home entertainment settings.

You can use these screens with most LED and LCD projectors. DLP projectors are also compatible. The white screen has an unintrusive black bordering to provide the best viewing experience.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

JaeilPLM Portable Projector Screen

This is a very flexible portable projector screen with a two-in-one mounting system. As a basic wall hanging screen, you can mount it anywhere using just a single nail. In areas where this is not feasible, you can easily convert the screen into a standing projector screen.

And unlike the usual tripod mounts, the aluminum poles in this screen form a triangular base that is far more stable. This makes the JaeilPLM screen an ideal choice for both indoor as well as outdoor use.

The 100-inch PVC matte white screen has an aspect ratio of 16:9 and can adequately handle 4K video content. With 1.15 gain and 160-degree viewing angles, the display offers excellent performance.

Installation is pretty simple and can be handled in under 15 minutes. For comfortable carry and travel, the projector screen is bundled with a handy carry bag.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

VIVO Home Theater Projection Screen PS-M-100

This is a permanent projector screen from Vivo designed for home theater use. The metal casing has a dual mounting system for installation on walls and ceilings. The manual pull-down design allows this screen to be discreetly rolled away after use.

The Vivo screens are available in 80 and 100” sizes. Both are HD capable with a native aspect ratio of 16:9. The matte white surface has a gain of 1.1 for optimum light reflection. The viewing angles are not the best at 120 degrees, but they do offer adequate viewing comfort.

The Vivo screen is compatible with a wide range of projectors, including LED, LCD, and DLP versions. The screen size can be adjusted, with an option to quickly increase or reduce the height. This Vivo series also has screens with 1:1 and 4:3 aspect ratios.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

Vamvo Outdoor Projector Screen

The Vamvo is the ideal choice for folks who need a highly mobile projector screen that can be installed and used outdoors on camping grounds, parks, and other similar locations. This is a 74.4-inch screen with a foldable stand.

Assembly takes only a few minutes, and the tripod metal stand is rock solid. The entire screen is made up of durable yet lightweight materials and is easy to carry around. You get a carry bag that fits snugly inside cars.

The white screen is made from foldable fabric. Lines and wrinkles can be removed with a hot iron in seconds. Vamvo provides a native aspect ratio of 16:9 which makes this screen ideal for movie screenings as well as live sports and even presentations.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

EasyGoProducts Inflatable Mega Movie Screen

The Mega Movie Screen is the perfect addition to backyard parties, picnics, and RV trips. The inflatable frame is made from waterproof and weatherproof polyester fabric, with a white screen that measures 96” x 58”, or 14 feet.

You get a complete set that includes an air blower, tie downs and stakes, all bundled inside a compact carry bag. The entire system can be set up in under two minutes with ease. Thanks to the robust design, this screen is very stable even in windy conditions.

If you want something bigger, there is even a 17 feet variant available. The white fabric has excellent viewing angles and brightness, thanks to the black coating behind it.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

Cloud Mountain Manual Projector Screen

This permanent projector screen can be used both at home and in an office setting. Like most other projectors of its class, the Cloud Mountain has flexible mounting options. The pull-down screen can be mounted on the wall or even the ceiling.

This particular model has a screen size of 100 inches coupled with an aspect ratio of 16:9 which makes it the perfect option for a home theater. 1:1 and 4:3 aspect ratio models are also available, in sizes ranging from 50” all the way up to 120”.

The matte white screen has 1.3 grain for superior viewing quality in bright light settings. The 160-degree viewing angle and black borders further enhance the viewing comfort here. The screen height and aspect ratio can be adjusted using a pull-down lock system.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

JoyHero Outdoor Projection Screen

JoyHero is the perfect choice for those looking for an affordable outdoor projector screen with HD video capabilities. The PVC screen on this model is capable of displaying HDTV content at an aspect ratio of 16:9.

The screen can handle movies and live sports telecast with equal aplomb. If required, it can also be used for business presentations. JoyHero offers screens with sizes ranging from 60” to 120”. The viewing angles are excellent at 160 degrees, and the black borders on the white screen further enhance the video presentation.

This is an ultra-portable screen that can be rolled up and transported in a matter of minutes. As it has a hanging system, outdoor usage might be restricted somewhat.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

 

Elite Screens VMAX2

To round off the list, we have another high-end projector screen from Elite Screens. The VMAX2 is an electric drop down screen. It uses motorized joints for the roll up and drop-down movement. With a 1:1 aspect ratio, this is a more business-oriented screen from the manufacturer.

The fiberglass backed screen has a standard 1.1 gain, and an all-black treatment up front. The screen is 4K capable and can even handle 3D content. Thanks to adjustable mounts, the display can be installed on walls as well as ceilings. The motors are noiseless and can be remotely operated.

Viewing angles are among the best at 180 degrees, making this a fantastic option for larger rooms and conference halls. The product has GreenGuard and GreenGold Certification and comes in an easy to maintain package.

 

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

 

If you need a projector to go with your screen, don’t forget to check out our best outdoor projector and short throw projector guides!