Ever wanted to hide your HDTV from view sometimes? I'm willing to bet your significant other has. Maybe you've thought, If only I could display something on my projection screen when I wasn't using it without burning out my projector. Well, Vutec, makers of some of the finest front projection screens in the business, have a solution; it's called the Artscreen and as its name suggests its art for your HDTV screen.
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The basic premise behind Vutec's Artscreen is simple, to make your HDTV or projection screen appear like a framed work of art when not in use by covering it with a work of art. Sizes start at 32-inches and go up to 103-inches though custom sizes and/or specs can be accommodated at an extra cost. There are dozens of frame and matte options to match any décor. As for the artwork options there are, once again, dozens of options from artists such as Monte Nagler, Howard Behrens, Jim Holehouse, Mike Shaffer and Shelly Lawler as well as famous contemporary prints, popular art and even sports imagery. The Artscreen's numerous artwork, frame and matte options allow for almost unlimited customization but Vutec can also accommodate personal images be they photographs, paintings or digital imagery as well.
The whole process of choosing what combination of frame, matte and imagery you wish to have is streamlined using Vutec's Artscreen Designer program online. Your local Vutec dealer can also assist you or your interior designer in the design and purchase of your custom Artscreen. Prices vary depending on the size, shape, construction, materials and configuration of your Artscreen for no two are bound to be the same. The type of Artscreen mount you choose, on-wall or recessed, can even affect the final price. You can even order an Artscreen with a motorized mount to allow for your HDTV to tilt and pan when in use and sit flush when not. There are even Artscreens that can conceal not only your display but a soundbar and/or center channel speaker as well.
In use, the Artscreen is a pretty cool piece of kit and performs as advertised. I saw the Artscreen demoed at one of Vutec's Southern California dealers where it was used to conceal a 42-inch Sony HDTV. The materials looked to be of a high quality, the lines straight and the seams largely - ahem - seamless. In truth it looked like any custom frame job I've ever seen, only the image rolled up to reveal a nice HDTV. The motor mechanism is largely silent though there was a fair amount of ambient noise present during my demo and the motion was smooth and surprisingly quick. Those of you with nicely appointed digs with an HDTV over your fireplace would probably be well served with an Artscreen by Vutec.
Read about the high points and low points of the Vutec Artscreen on Page 2.