Classic Cinemas Newest Large Screen Achieves DCI-Specified Light Levels

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Mon, 08/15/2016 - 14:17 -- Nick Dager

Classic Cinemas’ Classic Charlestown theatre in St Charles, Illinois recently enlarged its auditorium one screen by 126 percent and now delivers images over 53-feet across in a wall-to-wall scope presentation. CineActive Solutions was hired to ensure the screen met DCI-specified light levels.

“We are committed to improving the movie going experience by implementing the latest advances in film projection,” said Chris Johnson, CEO of Classic Cinemas.  “We delight in delivering a big screen experience that impresses our patrons.  We have paid particularly close attention to the latest technologies in sight and sound – DLP 4K, cinema screen shape and surface selection and immersive audio.”

Keith Watanabe of CineActive Solutions said, “The remodeled Charlestown auditorium has achieved some of the best light uniformity measures I have ever recorded. The site compares with other premiere cinema venues. Originally, most digital cinema installs were done in a hurry – only measuring the light level at the screen’s center. But, motion picture specifications describe several other important measures of image quality: light uniformity (shown here), color uniformity and contrast.”

Watanabe used the Qalif Ultimate light meter available to recalibrate the auditorium. “In this instance, the auditorium achieved DCI in all categories but missed on light uniformity,” he said. “At Classic, I used the Qalif Ultimate meter to measure a variety of Classic auditoriums with a different screen sizes, shapes and screen surfaces – focused on light uniformity.

Watanabe said the DCI Light uniformity specification is often the most difficult to achieve as cinemas have installed high gain silver screens using passive 3D systems like RealD for light polarization and to maximize center light (due to light loss for 3D systems).

“At Classic Charlestown auditorium one, we selected a lower gain surface, Harkness Perlux P140, which required larger lamps in exchange (from a 4K to a 6K) but exhibited better light uniformity,” Watanabe said. “They also constructed a screen frame with an 8.33 percent curve, which is a deeper curve than most cinemas build. Typical frames use a fixed 5 percent curve of screen width. It’s better to calculate based on auditorium shape and screen aspect.”

Classic Charlestown auditorium one features the Christie CP4230 4K DLP projection with GDC SX2000AR servers. The remodel added the immersive audio system, DTS:X audio, and a Harkness Perlux screen.

Classic Cinemas

CineActive Solutions