Basement (Underpinned) Rec/Media Room Build - Page 4 - AVS Forum
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post #91 of 115 Old 07-27-2010, 08:53 PM - Thread Starter
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The painter came and did a first coat. It was finally resembling something closer to a finished basement. The electricians also came to install the track lighting. I was skeptical about the use of track lights at first, but my wife was insistent. The track lights look great - bright, white light and they give us the flexibility to add more or less lighting. And it's much cheaper than pot lights!

Track Lights


My wife also didn't want a standard, boring handrail with pickets. So she designed a slat screen and had them build it - it turned out beautifully:

Slat Screen



She also had the idea of using barn door hardware for a sliding door separating the main room from the laundry/storage room. Again, I wasn't too fussed either way and would've been happy with a conventional door. But it's hard to argue with the results:

Sliding Barn Door

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post #92 of 115 Old 08-17-2010, 07:53 PM
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wow - very nice. can we see the final results?
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post #93 of 115 Old 09-09-2010, 07:36 PM
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I have to say I'm totally impressed with the results. Tomorrow I'm going to be contacting a structural engineer in town so he can price out the underpinning of my basement. This thread will be my bible! Awesome job.
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post #94 of 115 Old 09-22-2010, 08:03 PM
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Very impressed with the overall project. Just ticked that your project is done. The slat-wall on the stairway is VERY slick!! I like it!! Nicely done overall!!
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post #95 of 115 Old 09-23-2010, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, guys. I still have a wrap-up post and some more photos to do, but l just haven't found the proper time. Everything is working out very well, however, and I've really been enjoying my time in the new basement. Perhaps not that surprisingly, I've been spending more time watching movies and HD sports broadcasts on the 110" screen compared to listening to my CD's I do not find 110" that big at all and I'm sitting ~9' away. Maybe I'll sell my 2-channel gear and just stick with a receiver if I find that I listen to less and less of my set-up.

The one surprise has been how warm and humid it gets in the basement. All the walls and the ceiling are insulated now and the old windows were replaced too, so perhaps that shouldn't be too surprising. It's just I've always associated basements with being cold, even in the peak of summer. I have no cold air return because the house uses hydronic heating and therefore there is no ducting. I've tried running a portable dehumidifier, but all the hot air it exhausts have nowhere to go so while the moisture is removed, the unit is also heating up the basement! I'm currently looking into a ductless a/c unit, which has both a cooling and a drying mode. After all this expense of renovating the space, I'm not looking forward to spending another few $$ for another piece of equipment though

Anyways, I'll post the final wrap-up over the coming weeks/months....sorry.
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post #96 of 115 Old 10-08-2010, 01:42 PM - Thread Starter
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I've got an update, but it's not a happy one. I've posted the issue on the Audio Theory forum and hoping some of you still reading can help me resolve this issue. It's driving me bonkers! The link is here. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide!
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post #97 of 115 Old 03-30-2011, 06:03 AM
 
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Its funny because I am looking at houses to buy one in the future and I am looking for something in the $300-$350 range with a basement "that is full but not finished" and that also has "wide spacing" to allow for it to be converted to a home theater. I don't care if the house I get has low ceilings because I will definitely be underpinning the foundation about 3 feet the way you did it. But the one thing I will have to do is remove the poles and replace them with a steel beam which I got an estimate of $3k-5k from a Engineering company that does that type of thing. I also may make a shelf like you do. Right now I am living with mom and pop to save money for a home, but it will be about 5 years until I probably buy one (or I might do the home theater thing in my parents basement). Either way, I the way I see it, I have 5 years to read this forum, create my own book of each area of the home theater construction, and study study study as well as plan the home theater over the next 5 years...YOUR POST IS THE ULTIMATE INSPIRITATION THREAD ON THIS BOARD!!!!!!!!!!!

PS: Is it possible that we could talk over the phone in case I have any questions?

BTW, I plan on doing all of the labor for the underpinning myself...
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post #98 of 115 Old 03-30-2011, 07:40 AM
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Fantastic build....thanks for sharing. LOVE what you did to the stairs.
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post #99 of 115 Old 06-20-2011, 03:24 PM
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Great build...still thinking about this here...hope I can find an engineer that will help us do it. Thanks again for all the pictures and the step by step...it's a awesome resource!
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post #100 of 115 Old 06-20-2011, 08:01 PM
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subbed for this awesome build.
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post #101 of 115 Old 08-04-2011, 05:39 PM
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where is the rest of this thread????
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post #102 of 115 Old 10-16-2011, 10:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Hey guys, sorry for not uploading the finished pics, but better late than never! So here goes:

It has been a little over a year since the basement was done, and it sure has gotten a lot of use during this time. My son loves pushing his toy trucks around and I've been enjoying lots of movies and watching sports on the big screen. As life continues to be busy, the space still feels unfinished as there are still lots of art I'd like hung and I've had no luck finding an a/v rack that meets the wife approval and satisfies my audiophile sensibilities. I also would like to look into room acoustic treatments, especially as the space is wide open, and the left front speaker opens up to lots of space but the right front speaker is at a corner.

View from Laundry Room (everyone loves the concrete floor!)


View from Projector


View from A/V Rack


Toy Storage and Open Counters Under Stairs


Equipment List:
Blue Circle BC32 5-channel amp
Blue Circle BC3000 MkII pre-amp
Audio Aero Prima CDP
Anthem MRX500 receiver
Totem Forest, Model One Signature Center, Dreamcatcher Side Surrounds, Energy RC-Mini Rear Surrounds, Hsu STF-3 sub
My own build of mini-ITX HTPC
Blue Circle MR1200 power conditioner & various cabling



Storage/Laundry Room


Bar Area


Bathroom


Da-Lite 110" HP screen


Money Shot: Running XBMC and System Turned ON!


There it is - hope you guys enjoyed the thread! I also had a heck of a time dealing with a ground loop hum. This was particularly frustrating because I had 3 dedicated circuits put in for the whole setup! I even called in an electrician to double check everything, but no luck solving it. The only "solution" I found was to have everything plug into a power conditioner and then run a power cable with the ground pin pulled from the power conditioner to the outlet.

I'm not sure if I'd go through all of this again if I had the chance As someone else posted earlier in this thread....maybe I should've just moved and found another house with the basement I wanted.
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post #103 of 115 Old 10-17-2011, 08:11 PM
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Wow, what a fantastic space. I for one enjoyed following along and had wondered what had become of your build. Enjoy the fruits of your labor, you definitely earned that and thanks for sharing your build/experience with all of us.

Regards,

RTROSE

My (slower than molasses) HT build here.
Now a Certified Carpet Counselor and Plumbing Counselor (Self given titles - pay no attention).
Enjoying my "almost done" theater.
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post #104 of 115 Old 10-18-2011, 03:23 AM
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Awesome transformation! Thanks for vicariously taking us along for the ride!

The Un-Theater Un-Build
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post #105 of 115 Old 10-18-2011, 03:02 PM
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Very nice. Love the bathroom.
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post #106 of 115 Old 10-20-2011, 09:31 AM
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I too fought a ground loop issue, hum coming through my base speaker. I had to disconnect the gound at the base.
Nice room.
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post #107 of 115 Old 10-27-2011, 06:09 PM
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Amazing thread. Your build makes what I went through with my basement seem like child's play.
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post #108 of 115 Old 10-28-2011, 09:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, guys. It still amazes me how good the Dalite and projector is for watching both TV and movies. And I'm glad I didn't use any rule of thumb type of measurements to pick the size of the screen - I'm sitting maybe 8' or so from my 110" screen and while it looked too big in the beginning, now it's quite comfortable! It's hard for me to go to other people's houses now and have to squint at their 60" LED TV's So for those of you building out your room, I definitely recommend that you buy the projector first, project the picture onto your wall and zoom in and out until you find the size you like from your seating position.....then go and buy the right size screen!

The room is a bit echo-y so I have to start researching room treatments and such....lots more work left to do
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post #109 of 115 Old 11-05-2011, 05:18 PM
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holy cow!! that is just awesome...congrats and good luck!!
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post #110 of 115 Old 01-18-2012, 07:53 AM
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Really cool. I love the storage and laundry area
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post #111 of 115 Old 10-05-2012, 08:20 AM
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That looks awesome! We are thinking of doing the same with our house. What was the final cost was it in the 50k range or more. I am talking mainly doing the basement, not the extra audio video, but just to get the basement livable. We are thinking laundry and bathroom and family room just like you have. We were really intrigued by the great pictures and explanations. Thanks:)
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post #112 of 115 Old 10-05-2012, 08:24 AM
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WOW !!
The finished product is most impressive:

Love that partition wall for your stairwell, and the bathroom is VERY nice!

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Check out a video of my theater here
CuznEddy Cinema
Officially Hanesamatized on 8/1/09

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post #113 of 115 Old 06-09-2013, 06:32 AM
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What a great project! I am curious to know how the waterproofing is still holding up? Is everything still dry? We are looking at doing something similar to our basement and are trying to decide between interior waterproofing with an interior French drain and the dimpled membrane that you used or digging out the exterior of the foundation and waterproofing it exteriorly. The exterior waterproofing would add a significant amount to the cost, so if the interior system works at keeping your basement dry, I would love to know! Thanks!
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post #114 of 115 Old 03-16-2014, 04:55 PM
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Hello I am new to this site and I must say I love your project. Great job! I want to do the same in my basement right now. I currently have a dirt floor 6' tall michigan basement. I wanted to ask you how the angle beams are connected on top. From the pictures it looks like they are in the concrete but cant tell on top. Are they bolted to the floor joists? thanks again

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post #115 of 115 Old 03-17-2014, 05:07 PM
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Great thread — I can't believe I missed it before, especially as I'm trying to do something similar (but at a much smaller scale):

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1466416/the-seattle-craftsman-basement-home-theater-thread/0_100

I'd love to learn a bit more about the design of your water-proofing solution — I'm trying to thread a needle here and get some of the benefit of underpinning but without doing so.

I've opened a few test areas in my floor and found that water does seem to arrive during the rains. My current plan is to excavate a smaller 2' deep viewing pit, and remove around 4-6" of soil and existing concrete elsewhere, keeping approximately 5.5' away from the basement wall so as to not have to get into underpinning. (Width is to allow 2" of foam board insulation and then 3.5" of framing using 2x4s in front). My hope is to basically get enough depth to install foam board, vapor barrier, and then radiant heat piping everywhere, and end up with a new polished concrete floor perhaps a few inches lower than when I started.

I believe I'll need to install a french drain, leading to a sump pit outside of the theater area, and invest in a sump pump and backup. What I'm curious about is what the difference is between the vapor barrier plastic I saw in your design (under the radiant heating pipes) versus the heavier rubber material. I'm not sure whether I need to go that far or not, and what the cost implications might be and would appreciate any learnings you might have there.

The easier question is what exactly you did to arrive at the color of your concrete floor — it's just what I'm looking for, and I'd like to duplicate if possible!

For more context, here's a draft layout from my theater designer. Probably should go ahead and post that back in my earlier thread anyway!

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