Silver Ticket Products Fixed Frame Projector Screen Review (STR-169106)
As part of our upcoming series on building a home theater on a budget, I figured I’d start us off with a fixed frame projection screen review. The particular model I’m reviewing today is a screen sent to us by Silver Ticket Products. It’s a 106-inch 16:9 model STR-169106, which is part of their STR series.
A few months back, I decided to move my home theater setup and change the wall I was projecting onto. My original setup was projecting onto a matte-white painted wall I that I flat sanded over a year ago. I no longer wanted the image bleeding onto the low ceilings and front door, and wanted to keep guests from walking in front of the image. It came time to move everything to a new wall and upgrade the screen.
I was originally looking at buying an electric pull down screen with an infrared sensor so I could program a Logitech Harmony remote to lower the screen and turn the projector on at the same. This seemed like a really cool thing to have, however I found out the disadvantages of inexpensive sub-$200 screens of that style, and that is that they tend to curl up due to the screen not being tensioned. A fixed frame screen seemed to make the most sense within my budget. After doing some research on what type of screen best suited my home theater setup, I came across an article on The Wire Cutter on fixed frame projector screens. They recommended the Silver Ticket Products STR Series screens, as they were easy to put together and the color quality and brightness was exceptionally good.
Product Link: http://amzn.to/1TSysaC
Their fixed frame projection screens come in a variety of sizes and aspect ratios, including 16:9, 16:10, and 2.35:1. They even have a model that is curved. All you have to do is pick your aspect ratio and the size that best suits your home theater arrangement. For reference, there is a THX guideline for the optimal viewing angle, which I used to verify that the screen I was looking at would be good. For my situation, a 106-inch screen was perfect for where the seats are going to be.
All the STR fixed frame models feature 2-3/38” heavy duty beveled aluminum frame wrapped in black velvet for absorbing light, as well as a tensioned screen, which is done through their Silver Ticket Tension Rod System.
The 106-inch model reviewed today is nearly 97-inches wide, 57-inches tall, and weighs around 31 pounds. The screen itself is 92 by 52-inches.
Now one of the the most important things that helped me make a decision on this screen was how difficult it was to put the thing together. I watched a few assembly tutorials weeks before to see if other people ran into any issues. I really didn’t find much, so we’ll have a full assembly tutorial for this screen.
After reading the assembly instructions, I had a pretty solid feel for how to put everything together and where each piece was supposed to go. You assemble the aluminum frame face down and slide in all of the support clips and pieces. Once this is all completed, you roll out the screen material and slide in their tension rod. The rod keeps the screen flat as you start hooking the pockets down onto the clips. I did the entire installation by myself, but I would highly suggest having someone help you. You will have to put in some elbow grease to get the clips on the far side into place. The hardest part was actually putting in the support rod that runs vertically through the center of the screen, but I was able to improvise and get it into position. I’d highly suggest watching the video tutorial before installing your screen. I was able to put everything together and mount it in under an hour. I had to mount the screen a week after assembling it due to some issues mounting my projector on the low ceilings in here.
The overall assembly was easier than I expected.
With the projector finally mounted on the ceiling, I was able to mount the screen and get everything hooked up. Compared to the flat sanded painted wall I was using before, the black levels, the contrast, and the colors were noticeably improved. For reference, I’m using an Optoma HD25-LV, which is a 1080P 3D DLP Projector. Before I moved the projector, I was able to put the STR screen below my original setup and get a decent photo that represented the difference.
With it properly mounted up, the difference is far more drastic. There’s a huge reduction in light bleed on the ceiling and the image is brighter and more vibrant. I was already impressed with the image quality on the wall, but I knew the second I had these side by side that this was the screen I should have gotten a long time ago.
For the build quality, the ease of assembly and installation, the image quality, and the great value the screen brings, I’m giving this a 10 out of 10 in addition to a well deserved Gold Pressed Latinum Award. The screen has more than exceeded my expectations and I have no hesitation recommending it to anyone looking for a home theater projector screen.