Projector Reviews

Elite Screens CineGrey 3D ALR Screen Review – Performance

Elite Screens CineGrey 3D ALR Screen Review – Performance: Dealing with Ambient Light, Screen Material, 4K Content at Night

Dealing with Ambient Light

The Elite Screens CineGrey 3D screen material performed quite well when faced with ambient light. I shot the photos in the slider above during the day with my blinds closed. This was before I installed my blackout curtains, which I did in response to the horrendous amount of ambient light that leaks through the sides of the blinds at the edge of the windows. Not to mention the ghastly holes that the strings of the blinds feed through…

In the face of that ambient light, the CineGrey 3D material held its own. The Sony VPL-VW665ES is an 1,800 lumen projector designed for a home theater, and the assumption is that the room will be at least close to fully darkened. That, combined with the light color of my walls and light leak from the blinds, gave the screen a lot deal with. Paired with a true bright room projector, say, one that is 3,000+ lumens, and you’ll be able to get a lot more out of the screen.

The CineGrey 3D screen material can reject up to 65% of off-angle ambient light, so it doesn’t reject all of the light leaking in from the windows, but it does a great job. I could still see definition in dark areas, such as in this scene from Passengers below.

CineGrey 3D Screen 4K Passengers Ambient Light
The CineGrey 3D material does well handling ambient light.

The two photos below show the screen handling ambient light during the day, and what the same image looks like projected at night.

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Rocky Mountain Express projected by the Sony VPL-VW665ES during the day.

CineGrey-3D-Screen-4K-Rocky-Mountain-Express-No-Ambient-Light-Compare
Rocky Mountain Express projected by the Sony VPL-VW665ES at night.

As you can see from the photos, the CineGrey 3D material does a really great job of keeping the projected image from being super washed out, and looks phenomenal at night. The difference between night and day is noticeable, as expected, but overall you can still really see the detail in the corner where ambient light strikes the hardest. I’ve had brighter projectors here than the VPL-VW665ES projecting on the Matte White screen I currently have, and they were more washed out than what you see here – in some cases, dark scenes (like the one from Passengers from this section) were unwatchable under the same lighting conditions.

Screen Material

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The reflective surface of the CineGrey 3D material has a soft sparkle to it when viewed close up and without a projected image.

The reflective surface of the CineGrey 3D material has a soft sparkle to it when viewed close up and without a projected image – this is called speckling. It is so slight that I had to be right up against the screen surface to see it, and move my head from side to side. You will not be able to see any speckling while watching movies.

Elite Screens CineGrey 3D Screen Material 4K UHD
The slight shimmer of the screen surface can only be seen when standing within two feet of the screen, and not at normal viewing distances.

Since you will never be sitting within two feet of the screen – more likely, at least six feet back – you will not see the screen material through the projected image. In fact, the image looks as good as your local movie theater, especially in 4K…

4K Content at Night

4K looks awesome on the CineGrey 3D screen material, especially when projected at night in ideal conditions. The first three photos in the slider above are of 4K UHD Passengers, The Secret Life of Pets, and Rocky Mountain Express projected by the Sony VPL-VW665ES.

The image was simply breath-taking in 4K. The shimmer of the screen didn’t have an effect on the quality of what I was viewing. As mentioned previously, if standing within two feet of the screen, you can see the screen material through the projection, but not at all when sitting at a regular distance back (six feet in the case of my couch).

What struck me most was the vibrancy of the image. Now, to be fair, the projector paired with the screen is a $15K 4K projector by Sony, who basically dominate the 4K market, so it’s really no surprise that it looked so good. I expect that if you’ve got a nice, affordable, 4K capable projector like the Epson Home Cinema 5040UB, the image displayed on the screen look phenomenal in its own right. Perhaps not $15,000 good, but really excellent. That projector has excellent black levels, and I have a strong feeling it would pair nicely with this screen.

Enjoy the photos?

Great. Up next is our Summary page, where I will go over the gist of this review.

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