Projector screens or projector paint is an essential part of the home theater experience. In recent days the new trend is black projector screens and black projector paint. But, what if you don’t want to buy either? How do you make black projector screen paint?
Making black projector screen paint is not that difficult. To make it you’ll need water-based polyurethane, black satin paint, body gel, and tablespoons of cosmetic grade silver or white mica. And now you have an excellent DIY black projector screen paint.
So, let’s go in-depth and describe precisely how to mix these products and answer a few basic questions you might have.
Can I Use Black Paint for the Projector Screen?
Yes and no. Black house paint is not optimized for projectors. However, black projector screen paint is optimized for projectors, therefore using black projector paint is a good option.
To further elaborate, regular black paint (or any black paint for that matter) will create great contrast. In other words, dark pictures and darker scenes look good because the black paint creates that deep darkness it needs.
The issue resides in its reflective properties. If you change the projected image to show shades of color and whites, the black house paint cannot compete.
Black house paint does not have the proper reflective properties to bounce white and other colors properly. This gives you a dirty look or smoky screen where everything has a greyish tint to it.
Therefore using regular paint is not suitable for a projector screen.
On the contrary, black projector paint has the appropriate reflective properties and chemicals that make your image look good. The whites will remain white, the blacks are intensely dark, and all other colors appear appropriate.
If you need a visual representation of black house paint versus black projector paint, check out this YouTube video that shows you the difference side-by-side.
If you’re creating your own mix of black paint for your projector, we will help you find a great mix for you to dabble with. Keep reading below to find out how to create black projector paint for your new home theater.
What Kind of Paint do You Use for a Projector Screen?
There are many kinds of projector paint you can use. There are different colors, everything from black to white and grey. There are even different brands that make choosing an appropriate projector paint easy. So, let’s break it down some more to show you what kind of paint you need for a projector screen.
White Projector Paint
White projector screen paint is the most common type of screen paint. Many people use it because it’s the most discrete and comfortable. In other words, people understand that white projector paint bounces all other colors naturally and effectively.
White projector paint is not plain house paint. White projector paint has reflective properties and appropriate glossiness to bounce enough color and light to you as you watch your movie.
With white projector paint, you need to understand a few things.
First, you’ll need to determine how many lumens your projector contains. Next, determine the type of media you want to view. Finally, determine how much ambient light you’ll allow in your room.
These specifications are necessary because they will determine if you purchase a flat projector screen paint or one with higher reflectiveness.
For example, projectors with lower lumens and rooms with more ambient light require a projector screen paint with higher reflectivity.
The opposite is true for projectors with high lumens and rooms with lower ambient light. Using paint with lower reflectiveness is best for these situations.
Although considering the type of media you’ll watch also plays a key.
For example, bright shows and movies require less reflective projector screen paint. But darker movies require more reflective paint.
The same is true for HD movies and video games. They require more reflectiveness to create the proper contrast for those rich colors.
Grey Projector Paint
Grey projector paint has one benefit you’ll want to consider. It contains the same reflective properties as white projector paint, but grey is great for absorbing ambient light very well.
In other words, if your media room is outside or in a room with lots of ambient light, the grey background will allow a clearer picture.
Black Projector Paint
Black projector paint is great for contrast. If you’re watching movies with dark scenes, it will keep those darker colors dark. However, black projector paint works best with projectors that have higher lumens.
Also, using the appropriate black paint will work in your favor. In other words, black house paint doesn’t cut it.
Paint on Screen Projector Paint
If you’re looking for types of projector paint, Paint on Screen is a great brand.
Paint on Screen uses a number system that ranges from bright whites to deep blacks. Therefore choosing a paint that is suitable for you is easy.
To compare it to physical projector screens, Paint on Screen brand is a very close second.
For instance, their paint is HD 1080p, 4K ready, and 3D ready.
Many screens have a visibility angle of 160 degrees, but Paint on Screen has a 140-degree viewing angle. In other words, it’s very similar to a regular screen but with the added benefit of saving you space, time, and money.
Paint on Screen works in many situations. It’s great for movies, classrooms, and slideshow presentations. And now that you understand the added benefits of grey and black paint, you can choose the one that’s perfect for your situation.
This brand also uses a low chemical mixture that makes it safe for households, children, and pets.
Ultra HD Projector Screen Paint
Another good brand for projector screen paint is Ultra HD . You’ll notice its mixture of chemical compounds makes it bright enough for your movie while absorbing ambient light.
Ultra HD is great for HD and 4K projectors. This brand uses water-based acrylic latex paint, which means it’s safe and easy to apply.
All you need is two coats of paint, and you’re done.
However, we should mention that this projector paint is not good in cold weather. If the temperature dips below 15 degrees, the chances of clumping or cracking increase. So if you live in a colder climate, consider Paint on Screen instead.
How to Make Black Projector Screen Paint?
Now, for the question you’ve been waiting for, how to make black projector screen paint?
Making black projector screen paint requires several ingredients.
These ingredients include two cups of water-based polyurethane, two cups of black satin paint, half a cup of body gel, four tablespoons of silver or white mica cosmetic grade. This is for one quart of black projector screen paint.
Let’s start with adding the cups of polyurethane into your mixing bowl.
Next, you need to add half a cup of the body gel.
Stir both ingredients until the body gel is completely integrated into the polyurethane.
The body gel is thick and requires lots of mixing. If it looks like a pudding-like consistency, you’re doing it right.
Now stir in the mica. Measuring four tablespoons for your bowl, you need to place the mica into the mixture carefully
Mica is very fine, so you’ll need to be as still as possible.
Once you’ve carefully placed the tablespoons into the mixture, carefully fold the mixture on top of the mica.
Once the mica is properly wet and weighed down, you can now stir it without fear of getting it everywhere.
Allow the mica to set for about 15 minutes. Stir it occasionally.
Next, add the same amount of black paint to our mixture. That’s two cups of black paint. If you’re making more or less, you’ll want to remember that the polyurethane and black paint must be equal in measurements.
Mix it until you get a very creamy consistency.
Now you have a well-balanced mixture of chemicals that give you a black projector screen paint with proper reflectiveness and shine for your home theater.
Suppose you’re interested in the video version of this mixture, head over to this YouTube video. It further explains what each chemical does to improve your image.
However, it also walks you through the painting process and preferred painting tools.
A Few Last Comments
There you have it. Now you know how to make black projector screen paint. So let’s grab our black satin paint, body gel, silver or white mica cosmetic grade, and start mixing.
However, you’ve also learned the benefits of black projector paint in conjunction with white and grey.
With this knowledge, you’ll understand what you need for your projector screen and your home theater.
But most importantly, we hoped you learned something helpful today. Enjoy this DIY project.
James Quintanilla is a technical copywriter. Although his experience allows him to write on many topics, he loves to focus on tech and travel. As a freelancer, James has worked on projects with Pointer Clicker, Lonely Planet, and the Travel Channel. When he’s not writing or planning his next adventure, he’s watching a scary movie.