My take on Tabletop Projection


Technology


pictures

The first version of my tabletop projector table, demonstrated with the Pathfinder RPG Beginner Box.

The table has a size of 180cm X 140cm, the projection surface is 100cm X 60cm; with the current projector setup, a "screen" diagonal of about 100cm can be achieved.

The table has foldable legs and can be split apart in the middle to be transported in 2 parts.

The projection surface is currently just plain paper; this will soon be replaced with 2 layers of acrylic glass and paper sandwiched between them. It will then be sturdy enough to carry the weight of bigger miniatures.

The projector setup is quite simple, a DELL mini LED projector pointing downward at a slight angle (~ 5°) at a mirror, for a total projection distance of about 120cm. The mirror on the ground is currently much bigger than necessary and will be replaced by a smaller one (40cm X 30cm will suffice).

I will be using MapTool to display the maps.

Pending improvements:
- replace projection surface with acrylic glass
- use smaller mirror on the floor
- paint table surface (black?)
- put opaque curtains below the table around the projection surface to reduce stray light from below


Nifty!
GRU


Nice.

And yet, I think I'll wait for the price of touchscreen flat panel LCD monitors to drop just a tad more. Then I'll lie one of those on its back and avoid all this mucking around with mirrors and holes in tables.


Tinalles wrote:

Nice.

And yet, I think I'll wait for the price of touchscreen flat panel LCD monitors to drop just a tad more. Then I'll lie one of those on its back and avoid all this mucking around with mirrors and holes in tables.

I considered this possibility too, but decided against it in the end.

My main issues were
a) ventilation,
b) danger of spilled drinks and
c) that no one is willing to guarantee you that the flat panel lying on atable will be working as good and having a lifetime as long as one standing upright.


What is the model of projector you are using?

Also, do you find the amount of light put out by the projector is enough? Do you have to play with the lights off?


It's a DELL M110 projector.

The brightness is good, but we will have to play without a light source over the table, and not in bright daylight; some small lights and ambient light is OK.


Zen79 wrote:

put opaque curtains below the table around the projection surface to reduce stray light from below

Now I is feel stupid. Excellent tip!

How would your mounting hold up to the 1.1 kg Optama ML500 vs the little pico Dell you have?


The mounting is quite solid, it is made of 24mm fibreplate like the rest of the table. The problem with a bigger projector would be, that with my setup, you would have a smaller projection distance, hence a smaller diameter of the final projection. I have seen another table on the internet where they used a bigger projector and a much more complicated setup under the table involving two mirrors.


Actually it shouldn't be that bad. The Optoma isn't much deeper then the Dell. Just playing with projector centrals numbers for fun, I think I'd end up loosing 1 inch off the side and 3 inches off the other. So 1 row and 3 columns of squares on the game board removed.

I'll have to put some time aside this holiday season for an extra project... besides house repairs.

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