IMAX has changed the way we view cinemas in more than one way and now, over 30 years later, it has over 1,200 screens all over the world. The difference between standard screen and film and the one you get at IMAX is so visible, you won’t believe you ever thought cinemas were of the top quality. But why does IMAX differ so much and why hasn’t it overtaken the whole industry if it’s so good?
The IMAX quality
There is not much to say about the standard cinema screen except the fact that its size is proportional to the size of the room and seemingly takes up the whole theatre wall. Well, if you think this is big you’ve never seen IMAX. Their uniqueness comes from the idea of completely immersing the viewers in the movie. The screen here is about 16 meters high by 22 meters wide or even bigger, reaching up to 30 meters high! If you wanted to compare it to anything, you’d say you’re watching a movie on an 8-storey building that’s wider than it is tall. For most people that’s beyond comprehension.
IMAX isn’t always that simple though. To create the illusion of the viewer being completely surrounded by the movie, they’ve introduced the IMAX dome, where you sit in front of a hemispherical screen which wraps the entire cinema and makes you feel like all there is around you is the movie itself. This gives you not only crazy good quality, but a better sense of motion that you would never experience in a standard cinema.
The uniqueness of IMAX
Why was IMAX created, you might ask? The idea was simple – give viewers an intense, realistic experience without losing quality of the image. The dome technology, which gives you the illusion of sitting in the middle of the movie is just one of the greater inventions associated with IMAX. Now, think about seeing all that in 3D, which here uses both polarized glasses and LCD shutter technology. That’s an out-of-this-world quality that most cinemas could only dream of.
On top of that, you get 48 frames per second on the film, which is double the standard frame rate and means even better, clearer, sharper image. You can’t say you’ve seen all without going to an IMAX theatre. The film that IMAX uses for their projections is about 10 times bigger than the average and because of that, the projector itself is massive. It has to be though, if the movie is supposed to be that good.