Outdoor TV with no shade cover?

tabitha_599

Well-known member
Jun 18, 2019
53
Tennessee
Hey TFP people. You guys have been my go to all through our build. We are almost a wrap on that finally :) . Deck is poured and fence goes up today so we can finally start getting our outdoor space in order just in time for some fall football. My husband would love to put a TV outside but we don't have a covered area to keep it under. I did see that you could buy a waterproof box to put the tv in but I'm curious to see if anyone else has experience with those? I'd love to see some of your outdoor setups that don't have a covered porch. And most of the back side of our house is windows. I only have one area of wall we could hang a tv on but it's away from our seating area so that won't work.

My other thought was a projector. They make some really nice ones now. Thinking I could just roll the projector screen up when not in use. But I think that's going to limit us to night viewing.

Thoughts? Pics?

Thank everyone :)
 

Geebot

Well-known member
Aug 19, 2013
931
A local bar with an outdoor seating area has their TV in a homemade clamshell. Essentially a 2X4 frame with a galvanized corrugated metal panel screwed to it. The metal panel covers the entire front of the TV and lifts up like a garage door to provide a canopy for TV viewing (can't recall if they had hydraulic lifter arms or locked it open some other way). Couldn't have cost $100 or taken more than an hour or 2 to build.
 
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santacruzpool

Gold Supporter
Feb 24, 2015
740
Santa Cruz, CA
I use a waterproof outdoor canvas TV Cover - like this one:
Amazon Basics TV Cover

I find that you can get a little smaller size than you need often times as the covers fit pretty loosely, and modern LCD/LED TV's are so thin. I am using the 46-48" on our 50" TV and use a 36-38" version for our older 40" TV.
 

dw886

Gold Supporter
Sep 19, 2016
248
ND
There's ways to mount the TV without having it attached to the house. If there's nothing "above" it to hang it down from, you can also bolt them to the concrete. Here's an example of a mount made for this:
Wind Rated Pedestal Tilt Mount for 32. If you're handy, you could build your own for a fraction of the cost.

There are TVs that are meant to be left outside - Peerless makes one, Sunbrite makes one as well, etc. Those are meant for being in direct sunlight, and still being viewable (far brighter than a standard TV - I think the claim is ~40% brighter), and have cooling built into them to be able to cool the internals in direct sunlight. They're also waterproof, so you can leave them outside without being covered. The prices are probably 5x the price of a cheap TV in the same size. Personally, I'd do what SantaCruzPool did, and buy a cheap tv + the amazon basics cover, and in the event that it fails every year or two, you're still ahead of buying a true "outdoor" tv. The picture won't be quite as bright (meaning hard to see if it's full sun outside), and you have to hassle with remembering the cover every time you leave the pool, but it hurts the pocket book less. If money isn't your main driving factor, and you don't want to worry about someone forgetting to cover the tv (or the cover blowing off in a storm), then get a true outdoor tv and you'll be happy. This option is better than the other option, but it's probably 5x the cost.

Don't mess around with a projector outside. You won't be happy. Projectors are lighting the image from the front vs a traditional LCD panel that is backlit. To get a bright enough image, the screens are meant to reflect light that hits the front of the screen (the higher the screen gain, the more reflective they are). This means that *any* light is relected, including sunlight, outdoor light, etc. The effects are a washed out (and barely visible) picture depending on the amount of ambient light that you have while you're watching.
 

freebsdrules

Well-known member
Sep 3, 2019
66
delaware
Cross-posted in another thread but applicable here too.

We went back and forth between going the relatively cheap "regular" tv and a tv made for outdoors routes. At the end of the day, we chose to buy a specialized tv for outdoors (sunbrite) based on the following:

1. The space we have it in mounted in is only half under an overhang and is very much exposed to the elements - the tv we purchased can handle rain, moisture, and extreme temperatures;
2. Part of the above consideration is that there can be a lot of glare/sun exposure so the added brightness of these tvs is nice (this model claims 3x);
3. The space cannot accommodate a very large TV anyway and while way more expensive than a regular tv, it was not crazy expensive (they can get very expensive if you go much bigger or go the Pro series route) ;
4. We wanted to be able to mount an appleTV and not worry about it either and the weather-proof "box" built into this tv can accommodate it;
5. We wanted to mount this nicely and hopefully not touch it for 10 years.

There would be ways of getting around most of these things and we could buy multiple cheaper tvs for the price of this but did not want to deal with that. All in all, we're very pleased. Note that Amazon sells a re-branded sunbrite (equivalent to the signature series) at a heavy discount.
 

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