The Best Projector Screens For Your Next Movie Night

Visual Apex Projector screen
Courtesy of Amazon

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Al fresco dining makes food taste better, and the same can be said of watching a movie. Gathering some friends and family in the backyard makes movie night feel like a special occasion. The first step is getting a good projector, and while you can use a white wall, a projector screen will greatly enhance the viewing experience.

And when the weather sours, you should also consider putting a projector screen indoors, for a more cinematic viewing experience. That’s why we’ve rounded up the best projector screens for indoor and outdoor use, as well as pop-up and inflatable options.

Related: Samsung Freestyle Review: Meet the Swiss Army Knife of Digital Smart Projectors

  

Projector Screens: What To Look For

There are a lot of factors that make a projection screen more than just a glorified bed sheet draped over a curtain rod. Some of those things include:

  • Screen style: Are you looking for a portable screen for your backyard that you can break down when not in use, or one for your home? If you’re buying an outdoor screen, look for convenient features like a carrying bag and included stakes.
  • Screen size: You actually don’t want the biggest screen you can possibly get. It’s better to get a screen that will fit the imaging size the projector can produce. Be sure to check the measurements of your projector before committing.
  • Screen Material: Not all screens are white — different colors serve different purposes — and the screen gain is important when it comes to reflecting light. The screen material can also affect the viewing angle range.

We just dropped a couple of terms, such as viewing angle and gain that might be new to you but are important to know before you purchase a screen. Here is a quick and dirty breakdown of some terminology to know:

Gain – This describes the amount of light the screen will reflect. A screen with 1.0 gain will reflect all the light back off the screen producing a brighter image. Less than 1.0 gain means a less bright image. The gain you want depends entirely on where you are placing the screen. For a really bright area, you’ll want a screen with less gain or your image will look washed out and vice versa.

Viewing Angle – If your screen has a narrow viewing angle, the further away you sit from the middle, the greater the chance the image quality will deteriorate. Generally, screens with high gain tend to have a less-wide optimal viewing angle.

Fabric Color – White screens produce the brightest picture. Grey screens are better for less light/darker tones and rely more on a brighter projector.

Acoustic Transparency – If you’re really going hard in the paint and putting speakers behind the screen, this is the amount of sound that can pass through the screen without interference. Those considering outdoor setups probably don’t need to worry about acoustic transparency.

RelatedThe 9 Best Portable Projectors for Your Next Outdoor Movie Night

  

Who We Chose The Best Projector Screens

We wanted to provide you with a wide variety of options because some tech, like portable projectors, you can turn just about anywhere you have a white wall or projector screen into your own personal movie theater.

Most of our top picks for screens are intended for outdoor use; they include pop-up screens and inflatable options, as well as traditional stand-mounted screens. For outdoor screens, we looked for screens that were easy to set up and disassemble. The screens also range anywhere from 60” all the way up to 135” providing you with a wide variety of screens that will work with your space and projector. Finally, if you are going to get one for outdoor use, we looked for options that had accessories like a carrying bag and included stakes.

These are some of the best projector screens to buy to take movie night to the next level.:

  

1. Elite Screens Yard Master 2

BEST OVERALL

Elite Screens has one of the widest offerings of projector screens, including this option, which is designed as an indoor/outdoor option. It comes in sizes between 58″ and 135″. Plus, you can choose between front and rear projections. It has a sturdy stainless steel base for an easy outdoor setup. Plus, ground stakes, a rigging cord and support rings are included. There’s also a carrying bag for easy storage.

projector screen Image Courtesy of Amazon
  

2. Silver Ticket Projector Screen

BEST FOR INDOORS

This projector screen comes in a variety of colors, including silver, white and gray. This allows you to customize the visuals to suit a variety of considerations, including the projector and the lighting and colors of the room you’re projecting in. It doesn’t come with a stand, so it’s best suited for mounting to a wall.

Silver Ticket projector screen Amazon
  

3. KODAK Dual Projector Screen

MOST VERSATILE

If you want to go big, then pick up this option from Kodak, which is available in 120″. The convenient screen works with both front and rear projection, and the kit includes a tripod stand for secure mounting.

kodak projector screen Courtesy of Target
  

4. VIVOHOME Projector Screen

BEST PULL DOWN

Pull-down projector screens can be a great space-saving option for indoor movie nights. That doesn’t mean you have to compromise on size, though, because VIVOHOME’s screen is 120″, making it one of the larger options on this list. The manual pull handle makes it easy to use, and it locks in place when fully extended.

vivohome projector screen Courtesy of Amazon
  

5. Da-Lite 36465 Model B Manual Projection Screen

BEST FOR OFFICES

Most picks on this list are for watching movies, but even with TVs, projection screens are still used in offices and classrooms for presentations. This basic option from Da-Lite is a roll-down, making it easy to get it set up and started. It could also be used for movies if you wanted to. The brackets allow it to be mounted to either the wall or the ceiling.

da lite projector screen Courtesy of BH Photo Video
  

6. P-JING Projection Movies Screen

BEST BUDGET

If you want just the screen without the stands or other features, this is a simple and affordable option to get. It works for indoor and outdoor settings, and the edge of the screen has grommets to easily attach it to a frame or even mount it on the wall.

projector screen Image Courtesy of Amazon
  

7. Elite Screens Pop-up Screen

MOST PORTABLE

Can you really make anywhere a movie theater? With this pop-up screen, the answer is yes. It pops open from a circular shape, similar to how a two-piece car sunshade works. Stakes and hooks are included to secure it.

projector screen Image Courtesy of BH Photo Video
  

8. Vankyo Staytrue 100″ Projector Screen – White

BEST BASIC

This screen is made by Vankyo, a company known for producing affordable projectors and other AV equipment. It’s designed to be easily set up and disassembled, making it great for on-the-go movie nights. Strings on the grommets make it easy to tighten the screen for a straighter picture.

projector screen Image Courtesy of Best Buy
  

9. VIVOHOME Blow up Mega Movie Projector Screen

ALSO GREAT

For a fun option that you can set up by the pool, consider this projector screen from VIVOHOME. It’s inflatable, making it easy to set up without the use of bulky and heavy metal frames. The screen is secured using adjustable straps.  It’s available in sizes between 14 and 24 feet.

projector screen Image Courtesy of Amazon
  

10. KODAK Inflatable Outdoor Projector Screen

BEST FOR POOL PARTIES

This screen comes from the iconic Kodak brand. It’s a simple inflatable outdoor screen that’s easy to set up and take down. It weighs 15 pounds, so you can easily take it on the go. An air blower and carrying case are included, as well as stakes, ropes and repair kits.

projector screen Image Courtesy of Target
  

11. Epson Duet Ultra Portable Tripod Projector Screen 80″

BEST FOR PRESENTATIONS

This option is portable, although it’s best suited for indoor use. It has a tripod stand, making it easy to set up. The expandable design means this screen can suit different aspect ratios. Besides movies, it’s also a good option for business presentations.

projector screen Image Courtesy of Staples