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Projectors vs. Flatscreen TV for Sanctuary
Hi, I'm new to this forum. The username is pyrodan because I work full-time for a Firework display/Special Effects company.
I'm not that techno-savy, so I need some advice please!
Our church recently purchased a church bldg that was larger that what we needed with the anticipation of growing, which we are now. We currently meet in the fellowship room, but will need to move into the Sanctuary.
The Sanctuary seats 400-450 people. The design of the Sanctuary will force us to use 2 screens/TVs.
I am looking into what is better all around (cost efficient, better quality, longer lasting, etc.) between using Projectors with Screens or cabling straight to TVs.
Also, if TVs are the better way to go, which type of TV.
I prefer to start with looking at what you are trying to do and then looking at which technology best supports it.
For example, how large is the space and what is the distance to the furthest viewer? That is likely going to determine the image size required for people to be able to view the image. Related to that, what do you intend to display, is it Graphics, text, video clips, live i-mag video or what? That could also affect the proper image size and the display technology that may best support those types of images.
What is the space like? Do you have good lighting control where the images would be or might they be subject to higher ambient light levels? Are there viewers extremely off axis of the screens horizontally or vertically?
What are the existing conditions? Where can you locate any screens, TVs or projectors? Is there any related power or conduit already installed? If the existing space is already set up for projectors than having to reqork the related power and cable paths to support flat screen displays might be an added cost to be considered.
The Sanctuary is approx. 100' x 80' (wide). The Ceiling at the point where the tv/screen is approx. 25' high.
At this point, we just use Power Point for Song lyrics, but would want the capability to watch video clips, movies, Graphic backgrounds, etc.
Lighting isn't real bright nor should the outside light (sunshine) be an issue. (I will probably have to double-check that though.)
There are no existing anything. The previous church was old-school and didn't use modern technology. The crawl space above the Sanctuary is extremely workable.
The Sanctuary is divided up into 3 sections of pews, I believe theater style seating (sloping floor up away from the pulpit).
Screens/TVs would be 2 - each being 1/4 - 1/3 to the side. (Having 1 centered one wouldn't work because of the cool, Cross on the wall behind the pulpit AND the people on the sides wouldn't be able to see it well.
NOTE: We will building a Audio & Media control area in the back of the Sanctuary. The current Sound System is on the back (and side) of the stage.
So we will be running audio cables (snake) up and thru the crawlspace.
Hopefully this answered everything.
100'x80' seems to mean viewers up to 125' or so away. Depending on the content that would typically relate to a 15.625' (8:1) to 20.83' (6:1) tall image, although for some applications you may be able to go smaller, say 12.5' high (10:1).
For the 16:9 format of most flat panels those equate to a 306" to 510" diagonal images, much larger than even the largest single displays and probably representing an 'video wall' array of multiple displays. Four to nine of the 152" diagonal Panasonic plamsas might do that, at a list price of something like $2 million to $4.5 million, but more likely it would require a larger array of smaller, more cost effective displays.
With projection you are probably very high brightness (10,000+ lumen) projectors, although if you display primarily text and graphics but limited video you may be able to use 16:10 or 4:3 format projectors to maintain a larger image height for reading characters with a smaller overall image size.
The usual options to very large single images would be either to limit the viewing area, to break the viewing area up to be served by multiple images or to try to get by with smaller images with a limited amount of larger text and graphics displayed. The latter option is very subjective, some people seem to get along fine with much smaller than 'standard' images but you may not know if it works until you try it.
I tell people for a quick idea of the situation go to a large electronics store and look at the largest flat panels they have on display. Those flat panels may look huge at living room viewing distances but then pace off the viewing distances involved for your church, say 100' to 125' here, and look at the same display. You may be surprised at how small it looks even at shorter distances.
Also, in order to get a large enough screen, making a video wall, it makes text VERY difficult to read. Beyond rooms that hold 50-75 people, LCD panels are generally a bad idea.
Projection is the best/cheapest option.
Esoteric Visions Lighting and Video
A/V/L designers, installers, and integrators for churches. 15+ years of industry experience.
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