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Should You Use a Screen or Television in Your Home Theater Design?

We Help You Weigh the Pros and Cons of Each Option

Should You Use a Screen or Television in Your Home Theater Design?

Selecting the type and size of your video display is one of the first steps of home theater design. While many people are adamant that a theater is not complete without a screen-and-projector combination, there are also benefits to going with a large flat-panel television instead. Below we’ll take a look at the pros and cons of each option to see which one works best for your Glencoe, Illinois home.

SEE MORE: What Are the Best Uses for Your Home Theater System?



Pros: A screen-and-projector setup gives a home theater design more authenticity. It helps viewers feel like they’re really in a theater environment. One reason has to do with is aspect ratio. The preferred ratio for studio productions is 2.35:1 which is not available on any TVs on the market. So if you want to perfectly recreate the images from a commercial theater at home, a screen is the way to go.

Another benefit is size. If you want larger-than-life images, you want to go with a screen. When it comes down to price per square inch, a screen and projector combination beats out its TV counterparts substantially. A projector is also better at creating dynamic images on a bigger scale.

Screens can also be efficient in small spaces. Manufacturers offer retractable ones that disappear into the ceiling when not in use, so they don't take up any space. Moreover, with screens you can place your speakers directly behind your video display to keep them hidden from view and to better recreate the audio format from a commercial theater.

Cons: The biggest drawback for a traditional screen-and-projector combination has to do with light. If you’re not in a light-controlled room, the images on your screen could suffer. You can resolve this by investing in special light-reflecting screens. Screen Innovations offers great solutions with its Slate and Black Diamond lines, so you can enjoy movies even in rooms were light is not completely blocked.

Screens can also be a bit harder to install. You need to find the right location and angle to install your projector to get optimal images on your screen. You may also need a custom installation in order to hide your projector when not in use to better fit your minimalist style.


Pros: For smaller displays, you will get better video quality using a 4K Ultra HD television. Most include advanced anti-glare technology, so you don't have to hide your theater in the corner of the basement to get quality images.

With the advent of smart televisions, you can also get additional stand-alone features you wouldn’t get through a projector-and-screen. Most TVs now come with built-in apps like Netflix or Amazon Video so you can begin watching as soon as they’re plugged into the wall (and connected to your Wi-Fi network).

Cons: The reason televisions can do better in brighter setting is that they produce their own lighting. When going for larger screens, this can become a bit of a problem. Since LED LCD TVs give off three times as much light as a screen, they can hurt your eyes after extended viewing. At the moment, the largest UHD option from Sony is 85”. OLED technology offers great black level, but it’s still in its infancy and does not produce completely well-rounded images.

Our Final Verdict

If you’re going to invest time and money in a private theater, there’s no reason you shouldn’t go with an authentic projector and screen. The experts at Avidia can help you overcome some of the drawbacks with a professional installation that makes it easy for you to access your favorite content at the press of a button. We can also find the right screen to match the amount of lighting in the room. But if you're set on using the latest Ultra 4K HD television, we can certainly make that work as well.

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