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Author Topic: Ratio of screen height to first row
Karagir Khush
Film Handler

Posts: 7
From: Forest Grove, Or, USA
Registered: Jul 2003


 - posted 06-24-2005 08:59 PM      Profile for Karagir Khush   Email Karagir Khush   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
What is the ratio of screen height to distance of first row from the screen?
Is there a calculated approach?
Any links to a documented approach is most appriciated.

Thanks and regards.

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

Posts: 12491
From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 06-24-2005 11:34 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
In a perfect world, the first row should be no closer than the screen is wide. Unfortunately, it isn't a perfect world and besides, little kids love to sit as close as possible. I don't know of a "standard."

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Paul Mayer
Oh get out of it Melvin, before it pulls you under!

Posts: 3836
From: Albuquerque, NM
Registered: Feb 2000


 - posted 06-25-2005 01:02 AM      Profile for Paul Mayer   Author's Homepage   Email Paul Mayer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
IIRC the old SMPTE/ITEA recommendation was the top-of-screen height to the first row so that the first row people didn't have to look any higher than 45° to the top of the screen. And the last row was supposed to be no more than six screen heights back--which seems pretty short to me.

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Phil Hill
I love my cootie bug

Posts: 7595
From: Hollywood, CA USA
Registered: Mar 2000


 - posted 06-25-2005 02:17 AM      Profile for Phil Hill   Email Phil Hill       Edit/Delete Post 
WTF ***IS*** my friend John "Mr. Link City" Pytlak when ya need him?

I would post the info from the THX and SMPTE specs, BUTT(!!!!) John is "THEE" guy! [Wink] [Razz]

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Dick Vaughan
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1032
From: Bradford, West Yorkshire, UK
Registered: Jul 2000


 - posted 06-25-2005 05:15 AM      Profile for Dick Vaughan   Author's Homepage   Email Dick Vaughan   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
The UK Cinematograph Act says thst the maximum angle from the eyelevel datum to the top of the screen should not exceed 35 degrees

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John Walsh
Film God

Posts: 2490
From: Connecticut, USA, Earth, Milky Way
Registered: Oct 1999


 - posted 06-25-2005 08:13 AM      Profile for John Walsh   Email John Walsh   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Get a copy of the SMPTE paper; "Guidelines for the Design of Effective Cine Theaters" (SMPTE Journal Vol 95 Jan 1986)b It's a bit complex, but very through.

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Louis Bornwasser
Film God

Posts: 4433
From: prospect ky usa
Registered: Mar 2005


 - posted 06-25-2005 08:54 AM      Profile for Louis Bornwasser   Author's Homepage   Email Louis Bornwasser   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
The front row to screen measurement is not relevant. Using the old Fox standards: People want to sit 1.5 times the scope width from the screen. The size of the screen can be adjusted to place the 1.5 anywhere in the auditorium. I usually place the "best" seat at 2/3 of the way back.

In recent times, for a very large effect, I have placed it at 1/2 way back.

The "front row" question varies. Some owners want a high seat count and so "booking seats" are placed very close (4 ft) to the screen. Others want "best seats only" and so a more conservative approach is indicated.

Louis

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Adam Martin
I'm not even gonna point out the irony.

Posts: 3671
From: Dallas, TX
Registered: Nov 2000


 - posted 06-25-2005 01:04 PM      Profile for Adam Martin   Author's Homepage   Email Adam Martin       Edit/Delete Post 
The SMPTE paper is pretty much useless unless you're building a sloped-floor auditorium.

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Monte L Fullmer
Film God

Posts: 8353
From: Nampa, Idaho, USA
Registered: Nov 2004


 - posted 06-25-2005 01:27 PM      Profile for Monte L Fullmer   Email Monte L Fullmer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I've heard that if the screen was to swivel down from the up position and then lay down on the floor,the top of the screen should be is where the first row should be placed when laying out a seating configuration.

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Phil Hill
I love my cootie bug

Posts: 7595
From: Hollywood, CA USA
Registered: Mar 2000


 - posted 06-25-2005 04:15 PM      Profile for Phil Hill   Email Phil Hill       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Monte L Fullmer
I've heard that if the screen was to...
In general: Hearsay, conjecture, inexperienced wannabe designers, AND the "get the most $eats in there possible" mentality are the primary reasons why there are soooo many poorly designed auditoriums.

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Mike Blakesley
Film God

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From: Forsyth, Montana
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 06-25-2005 05:19 PM      Profile for Mike Blakesley   Author's Homepage   Email Mike Blakesley   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Economics come in to play. When we got our new seats last year, I was sorely tempted to leave out the first 3 or 4 rows in order to "force" people to sit a reasonable distance away -- but, the kids would've hated it, and our grosses would suffer too -- so the front rows are still too close.

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Dominic Espinosa
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1172
From: Boulder Creek, CA.
Registered: Jan 2004


 - posted 06-25-2005 06:17 PM      Profile for Dominic Espinosa   Email Dominic Espinosa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I'd put 2 rows on the floor, way too close just for the morons and sell out crowds and then a walk way, and the first row of the regular seating.
Most people in our theater sit in the back row or middle of the theater and couldn't care less.

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Mark Hajducki
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 500
From: Edinburgh, UK
Registered: May 2003


 - posted 06-25-2005 07:02 PM      Profile for Mark Hajducki   Email Mark Hajducki   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Dick Vaughan
The UK Cinematograph Act says thst the maximum angle from the eyelevel datum to the top of the screen should not exceed 35 degrees
Assuming the eye level of the front row is in line with base of the screen this make the minimum distance 0.7 screen heights.

Does this still apply to new build cinemas in the UK?

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Carl Martin
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1408
From: Oakland, CA, USA
Registered: Feb 2002


 - posted 06-26-2005 03:02 AM      Profile for Carl Martin   Author's Homepage   Email Carl Martin   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
mark, you took the tangent, but you wanted to take the cotangent.

~1.43 screen heights.

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Edwin Schwing
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 116
From: Las Vegas NV
Registered: May 2002


 - posted 06-26-2005 03:58 AM      Profile for Edwin Schwing   Email Edwin Schwing   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I love the front row (personally...) That is where I watch all my movies!

I know that watching a movie is different than watching a tennis game, but when I go to a movie, I like moving my head to see the whole movie...

I have a 27 inch tv, I hate staring...

My First assistant ran the CINERAMA in San Diego for many many years. (now torn down...) I wish I could have sat in THAT front row.... I don't care how wide her screen was!!

E

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