Space comes at a high cost and using it for multiple purposes is a good choice for your business, church, hotel or theater.  A motorized projection screen that rolls up and down is a great choice to free up space for other needed uses.

These are the top six considerations in selecting a motorized screen:

1. Size


The ideal size depends on the space and the aspect ratios (shape) of the content that will be displayed.

  • Image Height: specify as much image height as can fit.  Limitations include the ceiling height, furniture and presenters who may need to stand in front of the screen.
  • Image Width: rarely will only one aspect ratio of content be displayed.  There will be videos, presentations, movies of all shapes.  Consider how differing aspect ratios will appear on a given screen and select the best compromise.
2. Material Choice
  • Low Gain screens: selected for light controlled environments.
  • High Gain screens: used to enhance brightness when projectors have insufficient light output and limited viewing angles are not an issue.
  • White screens: chosen for their light dispersion qualities, wide viewing angles, and lower cost.
  • Grey screens: selected to preserve contrast levels and provide deeper color saturation.  Grey screens are also used in rooms with high ambient light.
  • Ambient light rejecting (ALR) screens: designed to redirect off-axis light (light other than that emitting from the projector) away from the viewer’s field of vision and to absorb indirect light.  ALR screens are used in rooms with high ambient light.
  • Black screens: perform best in environments with high ambient light and should be used in conjunction with powerful projectors that provide high lumen output.
  • Other screen materials are available for specific purposes.  Some materials are offered with black backing to absorb intrusive background light, such as light coming from windows.
3. Tensioning
  • Side tensioning allows the screen material to be completely flat from side to side.  The result will always be a better screen.
4. Position
  • Case Height: may be set by the level of the finished ceiling, the height of a beam or a position on the wall that is ideal for placing the screen’s case/housing.  The cases can be hidden or visible. Hiding screen cases involves recessing the case into a ceiling or soffit or masking the case with a cosmetic treatment.  Cases typically come in white or black finishes.
  • Image Above Finished Floor: the bottom of the image needs to be positioned so that all viewers can see it and should also be positioned so viewing is comfortable.
5. Borders
  • Bottom border: in some situations, an extra-long bottom border can be required to hide furniture or speakers that will be behind the screen or to simply bring the screen down to floor level for cosmetic reasons.  In these circumstances, determine the extra bottom border length and include that in your design.
  • Top Drop: when the distance from the bottom of the image to the bottom of the case is greater than the image height, the difference is filled with top black drop border.  Ideally, the image is positioned so that the average viewer is not forced to look up too much to see the whole screen.  In these circumstances, determine the extra top drop length and include that in your design.
  • Side Borders: the width of the side borders is cosmetically decided.  A motorized tab-tensioned screen’s overall width must be at least 1.33x the overall height.  When there is a lot of top drop, side borders may need to be expanded.
6. Speaker Location
  • If the speakers are placed behind the screen to increase the realism and immersive experience, then an acoustically transparent material will be needed.