How to Install a Home Theater Projector and Screen

How to Install a Home Theater Projector and Screen?

Installing a Home Theater Projector is not difficult but is tricky. If you have already installed any projector, many points should be on your fingertips. But if it is your first time, you must answer several questions to yourself. 

  • Which part to mount first, is it screen or projector?
  • The distance between the screen and projector?
  • The position of the screen above ground level?

The distance between the screen and projector?

This installation guide comes with answers to all your questions. We had divided the whole guide into several parts:

  • Screen location
  • Projector location
  • Mount projector to the ceiling
  • Mount screen to the wall
  • Finely tune projector position

Screen Location

The first thing to do, while installing a projector screen, is to find the best location for your projector screen. Most people place their screen opposite the front door but that could be problematic. This is because if someone goes out of the room during the movie, or comes in, direct light will fall on the screen causing distractions.

The easiest way to avoid this is to use the sidewall from the door instead of the opposite one. There should be no light directly falling on the screen because it washes out the image.

The next thing to look at is the screen location means the height of the screen. If all the seating in the room is at the ground, then it is recommended to keep the bottom of the screen 2 to 3 feet above the ground. If you have multiple layers of seating, keep the screen 1 foot further above the ground. This will make it easy for the backseaters to view the whole image.

How To Set Screen Location In Home theater
According to THX, viewers should not have to lookup more than 15 degrees

Since the projector location is set, you might think that it is the perfect time to mount your screen. But we recommend to just mark the screen corners and don’t mount it now. First, mount the projector, check it at different angles, and then mount the screen permanently.

Projector Location

Some people suggest that fixing the best location is a bit trickier process. According to my study, this is not the case. These people just repeat the same things again and again while things can be much simpler from what they show. However, you need to be careful about the throw distance.

The throw distance rating of any projector tells you how much distance there should be between the screen and the projector. A projector, too near to the screen, means that the image will be too small, and it will not fit entirely on the screen. If you place the projector very far from the screen, the image will be too big and unclear.

How To Set Projector Location
Throw distance is the distance from the screen to the projector

There come modern-day projectors, which comes with zoom factor in them. So, you can mount your projector anywhere and just fix the zoom. This is where I think too many explanations just confuse the reader and nothing else.

Ideally, you must consider the throw distance of your projector. Multiply it by the width of your screen in inches. The resultant is the perfect distance between your screen and the projector. People focus too much on the vertical offset.

It is the measure of how down to keep your projector below the ceiling. Don’t get confused and just keep two things in mind. Buy projector either with 0% vertical offset or the one with a 50% vertical offset. A 0% offset projector needs to be at the exact center of the screen. It projects images equally up and down the screen. A 50% offset projector needs to be at exactly on the top corner of the screen. This will project the image downward and cover the whole screen.

Keep your projector horizontally straight and buy the one having a 0% horizontal lens shift. This will make you tension free about horizontal settings. Just keep your projector on the center of the screen horizontally and the image will be projected equally in both directions i.e. right and left. No need to indulge in complex calculations.

Mount Projector and Screen

These two are purely mechanical steps and you need to take help from the manual supplied by the manufacturer. To get more info, you can check for videos on YouTube to help you with it. Good quality hardware is easy to mount, and it will go for long without any problem. One thing to remember is that first mount the projector and then the screen.

Perfect guide on how to install your projector the right way by Warren Nash

Finely Tune Projector Position

When you mount both your projector and the screen, you are almost done with the settings. Now there comes a technical process. You need to finely tune the projector to get the best experience. It is time consuming, frustrating, and you must take the help of another person.

This way, you will adjust the settings and that person will tell you how it seems on the screen. You need to repeat the same steps repeatedly and much patience is required. It is often that when you set one option, setting another will disturb it.

So, you need to look at all of them repeatedly. You need to adjust the focus, zoom pitch, yaw, and roll.


You will adjust it by turning the ring around the lens of the projector. You should make the image a little larger than the screen. This will ensure that the screen is entirely filled with the image. If there is any part of the image that spills over, the screen frame will absorb it to give you a perfect picture.


After you are done with the zoom, your next step must be to set Focus. Adjusting focus in a projector is just like you do it in-camera. It is controlled with the help of a ring around the lens. You need to first move the image out of focus and then adjust the ring slowly. A point will come when the image will snap into focus. You must take help from another person in this step to check for focus or you may feel the problem.


This one is easy to adjust. If your screen is level, you are only required to set a small torpedo level on the projector. It will make your projector parallel to the screen. Adjust the mount, so the projector is level. You need to make sure that the yaw is correct. If you have incorrect yaw, your image will be unlevel even if you set the projector and screen level.


You can see for issues with the pitch by checking if the projector is pointing up or down. The easiest way to set the pitch of the projector is by setting a small torpedo level on the projector. Orient it to make it perpendicular to the screen. Then, adjust the mount and level the projector level.


The last thing to tune is yaw. You need to turn the projector from side to side. A point will come when the top and bottom of the image will be parallel. Since I advised to use a projector having a 0% horizontal lens shift, so this step will be an easy one for you. Your image will be centered with ease.


When you are done tuning Yaw, the tuning part is done. Check for the zoom, pitch, focus, and roll once again and finish the process. Now it is time to use your Home Projector screen. If you follow all the steps and do the measurements precisely, you will get the perfect image.

Once you start setting your projector and screen, you will note that it is not that much tricky. If you have any issues with the technical part, feel free to ask.

By James Klett

James Klett a senior editor at GeekyMag focused on computer hardware and gadgets, offers a wide range of information in this field. Have a question, need some help, or want to give your opinion? Drop us a comment below!

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