Common questions answered: I am in the process of building a soffit to house a motorized screen, how can I ensure I have the proper space?

To install a screen in a soffit, or any other type of enclosure, you need to make sure there’s enough space.

There are 3 elements that influence how much space you need:

1. Your choice of control options for your electric screen

2. The way the projection screen is fixed to the wall or ceiling and which brackets are used

3. The dimensions of the screen itself.

Let’s look at all of them to see what you need to keep in mind:

1. Your choice of control options for your screen

Wiring-wise, you need to have a 3 cord wire come up to the point where the control box will be located.

The control box can be the switch, a 12V trigger or the receiver module of a remote control unit.

Depending on which one you go for, this unit will have to be in sight:
1. The switch, since you need to operate it manually
2. The IR receiver module, since an IR signal needs a free line of sight to receive the IR signal. The receiver box sometimes comes with an IR extention cord. This allows you to hide the (larger) box and have only the eye in sight. A better option when it comes to the aesthetics of a room.

12 trigger modules and RF solutions do not have to be in sight and can thus be placed close to the screen.

The impact of those when creating a soffit is limited, as the units are fairly small and can be placed anywhere you want. This means you can increase the length, depth or height of the soffit to accommodate the units.

The fixations of the projection screen

One thing to keep in mind is to make sure you have enough space top manoeuver and install the screen. Some installations become very difficult because the available space is limited. Make sure you can easily fix the brackets in the right position.

Plus, ensure you can then easily fix the screen into the brackets, which sometimes requires some manoeuvering.

The dimensions of the screen itself

The bigger the screen, the more space you need. That’s easy enough.

But make sure you don’t forget something. So if there are videos or technical documents available, make sure you watch and read them, so you can assess if there’s any implications for your particular situation.


Make sure you look beyond the mere basics of the screen’s housing to determine the space you need to build your soffit. Allow enough margin to make the screen easy to install and check the manufacturer’s documents to make sure you don’t forget anything.

If you have any questions about your own installation, let me know.

Good luck!


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