IMAX Vs RPX: A Detailed Comparison

One of the biggest options when it comes to cinema viewing is the movie format. When you head into a cinema, you may notice that the same film could be offered in different formats – two of the biggest being IMAX and RPX. 

However, a lot of cinema goers may not realize just how different these two cinema viewing formats are.

Knowing and understanding the similarities and differences between the two could help you have a better cinema experience and perhaps save a bit of money in the process. 

So, check out this guide to IMAX and RPX cinema. We are going to be comparing the two formats in detail so you can understand how they differ and choose the best format for you. 

So, let’s get into it! 

IMAX Vs RPX A Detailed Comparison

IMAX Vs RPX: The Basics

First, let’s just go over what these terms mean. 

Let’s start with one of the most common terms – IMAX. IMAX is a type of cinema format that stands for ‘Image Maximum’. It is best known for its massive screen displays and often shows movies in 3D.

This means that IMAX cinema experiences are very immersive as they use all the latest technology on offer including large cameras, digital dual laser projectors, and surround sound systems. 

RPX instead stands for ‘Regal Premium Experience’. It is the largest screen launched by Regal Cinema that also uses surround sound systems and the latest updated digital projectors. 

So, both seem to be very similar on the surface. Both IMAX and RPX cinema formats use large screens, high quality sound systems and premium projectors for an immersive cinema experience.

However, there are differences between the two cinema formats that lie just below the surface. So, let’s start our in depth comparison between IMAX and RPX cinema!

The Differences Between IMAX And RPX

The Differences Between IMAX And RPX

Just from the above section, it’s easy to see why many people assume that there are little to no difference between IMAX and RPX when it comes to cinema format, but in reality, there are a lot of differences between the two – and some of these differences can be vital when it comes to your cinema experience. 

So, let’s take a look at some differences so you can decide which format is best for you and your ideal viewing experience. 


Comfort is one of the biggest factors that can make a successful or disastrous viewing experience.

No matter how good the movie is, no one wants to sit in an uncomfortable position for nearly two hours and this can really ruin the whole experience.

This is why comfort is such an important area to consider when it comes to choosing between IMAX and RPX because these two types of cinema format are very different. 

IMAX cinemas feature very comfortable chairs that have excessive padding in the arms and seat so its viewers can sit and enjoy their movie with a lower chance of experiencing numbness, aching or any other form of discomfort.

There is also ample legroom between each row of seats so many would agree that a movie experience in an IMAX cinema is fairly comfortable. Many agree that IMAX seats are far more comfortable than standard cinema and theater seats.

However, RPX cinemas take it up a step further. Their chairs are made using higher quality materials including leather, and are built with higher backs and headrests for improved support.

Not only that but their seats are also wider than IMAX seats and can recline. Overall, the entire RPX cinema room is built for a sophisticated and exquisite viewing experience – hence why it features the word ‘Regal’ in its name. 

So, the seats in an RPX cinema are arguably more comfortable and enjoyable than the seats in an IMAX cinema.

This means that when sitting down to watch your movies, you will probably feel a difference in the quality of the seats and how achy and stiff you feel after the movie is over. 

Of course, some stiffness is to be expected after sitting down for such a long period of time but you will probably feel less uncomfortable after sitting in an RPX chair for two hours compared to sitting in an IMAX chair. 

Projector Technology

The projector technology is another important difference that can have a huge impact on your viewing experience but in truth – both IMAX and RPX have very similar technology when it comes to their projectors. 

IMAX cinemas use both 4K and 2K laser projects to project movies onto silver coated screens that are usually slightly curved for a more immersive effect.

They also use very high quality cameras with high resolution so viewers can experience pristine clear images. 

RPX cinemas use very similar technology for their projectors and cameras, although perhaps they are a little more updated.

This is because RPX cinemas tend to use digital projectors but the overall image quality is very much the same between the two. 

It’s very easy to see why both cinema formats have such similar technology when it comes to projectors and cameras – if one very easily outstripped the other in terms of movie image quality, then they would easily win out the competition.

So, it’s important for both cinema formats to keep as high a quality of image as possible so they don’t fall behind their competitors. 

Screen Size

Another one of the most important factors of cinema experience is screen size. No one wants to be squinting to see all the important details of their movie so the larger the screen size, the better.

This also means that everyone can clearly see the movie they have paid to watch. 

So, screen size is important – so which cinema format has the larger screen, IMAX or RPX? 

Well, the truth is screen size will vary from location to location. Some cinemas will have deluxe rooms with huge screens for very special viewings – but on average, the IMAX screens are bigger. 

The average size of an RPX screen is 40 feet by 60 feet, whereas IMAX screens are usually 52 feet by 70 feet.

Those few extra feet can make a world of difference when it comes to screen size so you are way more likely to have no trouble seeing an IMAX screen even with someone sitting in front of you. 

Sound Systems

While cinema may be a very visual heavy medium, it’s important to remember that sound also plays an important role when it comes to a good cinema experience.

Just like how you want to see your movie clearly, you will also want to hear it clearly too – so sound systems are very important when it comes to cinema formats. 

IMAX cinemas offer up 12 channels of surround sound, which means you can clearly hear every whisper to every explosion of your movie no matter where you are sitting in the cinema room. 

RPX falls behind in this category as their surround sound systems only have 7.1 channels. Although some of these speakers are built into the chairs, it’s not the same quality as those 12 channels that IMAX cinemas feature. 

IMAX cinemas are renowned for their great quality sound systems while RPX sound systems have been known to cause vibrations that can be pretty distracting and make it difficult to concentrate on what is being said in the movie. 

Ticket Price

And finally, we have one of the biggest deciding factors on which cinema format people choose – ticket price. 

Cinema tickets can be expensive and when you are paying for more than one person, it can really eat a whole in your wallet.

So, it’s no surprise that many people would rather opt for the more affordable tickets no matter how large the screen is or how comfortable the chairs are. 

So – how much do the tickets cost for IMAX and RPX viewing? 

Well, both are considered premium cinema formats so both are going to be relatively expensive. However, on average, RPX tickets cost just a bit less. 

The average cost of an IMAX cinema ticket is $20. For RPX, the average jumps between $18 to $21. This difference usually varies because of how in demand a movie is or it varies on location. 

So, overall, we would say that both these cinema formats are equal when it comes to price although you may be lucky and find a more affordable ticket with RPX. 


So there you go – those are all the important detailed differences between IMAX and RPX cinema formats!

We hope that this article helped you decide whether IMAX or RPX is better for you so check over the information above once more to make sure you are buying the tickets to the best possible cinema experience for you and your family. 


Anita Jones