The Challenge of Installing a Projection Screen in a Non-Dedicated Room

When it comes to designing a non-dedicated room that can be used as a real cinema, it is not just technical performance that is a challenge, nor is it just the aesthetic design. The real challenge is in striking the right balance between performance and design - often considered respectively, to be the male and female aspects of the system. And that is a big challenge because people can so easily be led by technological innovations, or to focus on design only, that they lose sight of how the system will actually be used.


The beauty of in-ceiling projection screens

With projection screens for non-dedicated rooms, no matter how nicely the housing is designed, people will opt for a hidden solution if their budget and room allow for it, and increasingly, in-ceiling projection screens - the ones that are built for recessed installation - are becoming a major part of the solution. The main reasons are the ease of installation and the clean look that can be achieved.


It would be a mistake, however, to think that this is just about the screen being hidden. A hidden screen adds a surprise element - a 'wow' factor - to any room. Having the screen appear from nowhere and turn a room into a full-blown cinema, would bring a smile to anyone's face - especially when you are the one showing it off to an unsuspecting audience!


Tensioned screens

When it comes to the technical side of the project, there is no need to compromise design with performance. The most important part of a projection screen - the screen surface - should be perfectly flat, but the drawback of in-ceiling screens is that not all are available with a perfectly flat screen surface. The solution is to use a tensioned version.


With a tensioned in-ceiling screen, the lateral tension system pulls out all of the wrinkles and stretches it to a perfectly flat canvas. In combination with a slightly flexible screen fabric and the weighted lower bar, a four-way stretch is possible, resulting in a flat canvas that is perfectly matched for high-definition projection.


Choosing the right tensioned in-ceiling screen

The five things that a well-tensioned in-ceiling projection screen should be are:


1. Easy to install - so you can turn around projects quickly and efficiently and therefore do not have to charge your customers more than necessary for installation.


2. Customizable - so you can give your client exactly what they need and get the best screen for their room in terms of different projection fabrics, top borders, and bespoke sizes.


3. Clean looking - once installed in the ceiling, you want the screen 'face' to be flush and have a clean cover plate so it is as invisible as possible.


4. Backed up by the proper guarantees - if something goes wrong, you don't want to lose money by having to ship back the old screen and reinstall a new one. Neither do you want to have to wait for a repair?


5. Easy maintenance - with a purpose-built unit, there's no need to rip open anything to get access to the screen - which could be the case for a custom-built 'hiding place' for the screen.


Preparing for the project

Having decided on a tensioned in-ceiling screen, and on a good supplier, let's look at how to deal with potential projects.


Ideally, you should get involved early in the project so that the builder can prepare for the screen to be installed. This means providing the physical space for the screen and ensuring that there is mains power for it. In addition, depending on how you want to control the screen, you will need to run a control cable to it.



Projector screens must not only perform well technically, but they must also complement the design of a room, especially if the room is used for other purposes. The ideal the solution in these instances is an in-ceiling screen with its advantages of being discreet, easy to install and easy to maintain.


If such a screen is to perform to high-definition standards, however, it must be tensioned. This may not be the cheapest option, but it will ensure superb performance for years to come. Indeed many installers recognize this fact and are already making bespoke, tensioned in-ceiling screens part of their arsenal in creating beautiful installations for their customers.


As an award-winning projection screen designer and founder of Betamax projection screens, Otto Tromm knows what matters when you want to get the most from your projection screen.


Otto focuses on an often overlooked aspect: projection screen industrial design. This focus results in projection screens that not only make the most of your projector but complement your decor.


To find PVC Screens that match your taste, room, budget, and projector, visit our site.