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CHOOSING THE RIGHT SCREEN TYPE FOR YOUR DOME THEATER

Domes are a great way to bring immersive entertainment to groups of people. From traditional planetariums to the latest high-tech rides, domes put the audience at the centre of the picture. But choosing the right type of screen depends on many factors.

The Ideal Screen

There is no single, ideal screen type, but by considering the type of content to be shown in the dome, the space available to fit the dome into, the budget, and the audience, it is possible to determine the ideal screen for the proposed project

Firstly let’s consider the different screen types.

Tilted Screen

Tilted screens are suitable for both planetariums and entertainment. For planetarium shows the whole screen is visible without needing to recline or bend the neck back too far.

For entertainment the main point of interest is directly in front of viewer. In permanent installations seats can be installed in tiers, for uninterrupted views from any seat, while in mobile domes this can be achieved by using a combination of cushions or beanbags at the front, chairs across the middle of the dome and standing area at the rear. This makes tilted domes ideal for cinematic experiences. However, as the front of the screen close to the floor, particularly in portable domes, visitors entering or exiting the dome during screening cast shadows onto the screen, which is annoying to other patrons.

This makes portable tilted domes unsuitable for galleries, art installations and in-dome events.

Learn more:
Pros & Cons
How to Use It

Horizontal Screen

Horizontal screens are situated around 2.2 meters (a little over 7 feet) from floor or ground level allowing the audience to move around inside the dome without interfering with the projection. Ideal for immersive art installations at galleries and festivals, horizontal domes can also host events, dining, corporate presentations or even parties and dance events.

Planetariums often use horizontal screens with omni-directional seating or directional, tiered seating, but this requires seats that recline to allow a full view of the screen. Portable horizontal screen domes start from 10 metres (33 feet) and are very popular at festivals where the audience can wander in and out as they please, recline on bean bags or lie back on floor mats to enjoy the immersive experience from the full dome screen above them.

Learn more:
Pros & Cons
How to Use It

Floor-To-Floor Screen

Horizontal screens are situated around 2.2 meters (a little over 7 feet) from floor All domes allow immersive entertainment for groups, but the floor-to-floor screen takes it to the next level – shared VR. Fulldome.pro pioneered the new product, with a screen that extends beyond the ceiling, onto the walls, and (almost) down to the floor. This screen is a unique piece of technology that helps to create truly immersive in-dome experiences.

Projection in this type of dome is a bit more complicated than other domes and projecting almost to the floor means that viewing capacity is reduced by around 30%. The projection area also includes the doorways, so people cannot enter and exit the dome during a show without interrupting the projection. The VR Dome, as it is sometimes called, is only practical in domes of 7 meters (23 feet) or larger.or ground level allowing the audience to move around inside the dome without interfering with the projection. Ideal for immersive art installations at galleries and festivals, horizontal domes can also host events, dining, corporate presentations or even parties and dance events.

Planetariums often use horizontal screens with omni-directional seating or directional, tiered seating, but this requires seats that recline to allow a full view of the screen. Portable horizontal screen domes start from 10 metres (33 feet) and are very popular at festivals where the audience can wander in and out as they please, recline on bean bags or lie back on floor mats to enjoy the immersive experience from the full dome screen above them.

Learn more:
Pros & Cons
How to Use It

Vertical Screen

The vertical dome is becoming popular as a ‘flying theater’ for amusement parks and attractions. After being secured their seats, usually arranged in groups on multiple levels, the audience is moved forward, into the dome, with feet hanging freely for a full-motion, full-immersion ride.

Mounting a dome vertically involves additional engineering to support and distribute the weight of the dome structure.

Learn more:
Pros & Cons
How to Use It

Spherical screen

If bringing the screen right down to floor is not immersive enough how about removing the floor and putting the viewer at the center of a giant sphere!

A sphere with a horizontal walkway running across the center and the whole inner surface, except the portals through which the audience enter and exit, as the projection screen.

Pros & Cons
How to Use It

The next step

With an understanding of these screen types and the differences between them it is possible to work out which one suits your project. Even still there are many more options to consider from projection, to sound, to facility design. Our team has many years of experience designing and manufacturing domes and projections systems, installation, project management, and support.

Contact Fulldome.pro to see how we can help bring your dome project to reality.

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