What are the constraints for switching from a television to a video projector in the living room?

If you want to transform your living room into a home cinema room, it is essential to destroy light pollution. In other words, you can’t replace your TV screen with a video projector with the snap of a finger. Let’s see together how to proceed to obtain an optimum result, much better than that obtained with an XXL TV.

Video projector for living room, the essential points

With some exceptions, the living room is a much less spacious room than a cinema room, and the distance between the projector and the sofa or armchairs is generally quite small. Comfort can therefore only be obtained if you opt for an ultra short throw projector. Despite the little hindsight, he projects a very large image and the comfort for users is total. Note that these video projectors are designed to allow, in addition, to view a projection in broad daylight in excellent conditions. Normal, their surface is treated specifically to reduce light pollution from the immediate environment.

As to his, it must be up to the task. A sound bar works well, but your best bet is to invest in a system consisting of five speakers and a subwoofer (5.1 system) for home cinema.

Mandatory light control canvas

To take full advantage of a video projector, the ideal is to have a dark room. But few of us want to repaint our walls and ceilings black because nothing is nicer than having a bright living room, with light walls and ceiling. However, these environments bathed in light harm contrasts. And even if you close the shutters and turn off all the lights, that’s not enough. The best solution is to opt for a light-controlled canvas or Ambient Light Rejection Screen, the abbreviation of which is ALR Screen. It is the expression used to designate the ambient light rejection screens.

It’s about a gray technical canvas which unleashes the full potential of a video projector. It therefore makes it possible to obtain images worthy of the most beautiful movie theaters even if the walls and the ceiling of the living room are very clear! With this specific type of canvas, there is no risk of being bothered by a white veil, the image is very well contrasted and the blacks are not gray but on the contrary deep. These canvases do not illuminate the ceiling, the side walls, or the floor as can a white canvas. This is in the axis of the screen that is returned the light coming from the projector.

This technological feat is possible if we manage to minimize the effect of points of shine (or metallic flakes) which give the impression that we are looking at an image through dirty glass. We therefore recommend opting for a system that filters light bidirectionally, and which, in parallel, controls the gray of the technical canvas while increasing the brightness of the latter.

Note that the quality of viewing can be optimized by installing the screen in an alcove, which has the effect of minimizing light pollution.


To switch from a television to a video projector in the living room and obtain incomparable image quality, you must opt ​​for a device that guarantees good vertical directivity allowing the side walls, floor and ceiling to be as light as possible, filtering then being very important. The more the vertical filtering, the more the room in which the video projector is installed seems plunged into darkness …

As for viewing angles, they are directly related to the horizontal directivity. This is not very important when the viewing angles are wide.

Viewing conditions

We do not expect a video projector worthy of the name that the viewing conditions are ideal. To tend towards this result, the screen width must more or less occupy 35 to 40 ° of the horizontal field of vision. But depending on the quality of the media, this data can be modulated somewhat. Thus, it is possible to obtain an exceptional image and rendering with a latest generation Blu-ray for example.

Choose a video projector therefore implies that we first ask ourselves about the viewing distance. To do this, you must take into account:

  • The distance at which the video projector will be placed,
  • From the size of the preferred image.

There are online tools who calculate this very well. Just enter the image format (16/9 or 4/3), the image base and the projection distance (both being expressed in meters) to know which projector to choose in relation to the screen size.

Choosing the right projection screen

We must also ask ourselves about the Conditions of use of this material to choose a projection screen perfectly suited to your needs. Some use their video projector on a daily basis, others in an exceptional way. As for viewing, will it be done in broad daylight or only in the evening, in a living room equipped with shutters or simple fabric curtains? When purchasing this type of material, it is very useful to ask about from a specialist.

A video projector with parameters set once and for all is perfect if you always want to do your video projections in the same room, which is the case if you switch from a TV to a video projector. On the screen side, for example, we can opt for a canvas stretched in a frame that is well suited to the living room, or for a fixed screen which costs more or less 1000 €. But when you do not want the installation to be permanent, it is better to choose a roll-up projection screen. Some models are manual, others motorized with a tension system, the latter requiring a budget of around € 2,000.

What about the cabling?

We can invest in the must of the video projector and the projection screen, if the HDMI connection is not at the top, we can only regret its purchase. To power a video projector, you need to provide electrical wires, but also something connect the sources such as the video player, the TNT receiver or the satellite receiver. However, the more the length of wires increases, the less satisfactory the quality of viewing. Even though it costs 200 to 250 €, the fiber optic hdmi cable lets not have any problem at this level.

Transform your living room into a movie theater is more and more common because real estate is expensive, and it is not always possible to dedicate a room exclusively for this use. In any case, the sum to be devoted to it is of the order of 20,000 to 25,000 €, which is too important for many households. Today’s equipment is designed to overcome this constraint and make it possible to benefit from a rare image quality, even in a living room, a room which does not however have all the characteristics of a real cinema room. However, we can call on a professional if one wishes to carry out works specific to treating light pollution.