Need help planning basement theater (pics) - AVS Forum
General Home Theater & Media/Game Rooms > Need help planning basement theater (pics)
ozziegt's Avatar ozziegt 10:02 PM 01-29-2012
I have an unfinished room in our basement. It's concrete on two sides and there are no windows, so I really want to turn it into a media room or home theater. We use it for storage, and I still want to use part of the room for storage. The room is 19x19 unfinished. I have a sketch of the unfinished room below.

So ideally, I would like to avoid having the room be a dedicated theater room if possible. However, it's looking like it's just not big enough to have a flexible media room + a large storage space.

The first floor plan I came up with is a smaller closet, with an l-shaped room. I think the closet isn't big enough and part of the space will be kind of useless.

The 2nd and 3rd plan have basically the same floor plan which allows for a lot more storage space. One has the seats further from the screen, but can only seat about 8 people. I would like to be able to seat more. The last plan seems to flow a lot better. It can also seat 12 people, but the front row is 8 feet from the screen which seems like it might be too close.

For all dimensions see the pictures. Any thoughts on the layouts? Am I overlooking a different layout which might allow the room to be more versatile?

edit: Maybe this would be better in the dedicated theater forum? I'm not sure.

Scout's staff's Avatar Scout's staff 07:08 AM 01-31-2012
Why not just add the closet(s) to the full length of the back wall (opposite door wall)? Or create 2 storage areas along the back wall for greater access. Use the same 6' - 7' depth or better yet, 4' and then have a room that is 19' X 12' (or 15'). Since there are no windows you have pretty good flexibility.
ozziegt's Avatar ozziegt 07:17 AM 01-31-2012
Well the way I have the room set up in the 3rd or 4th diagram, it actually is 19 x 14. I wanted to try to put the closet on the left side because of the odd traingular cutout, which is useful for storage but useless for the theater space.
ozziegt's Avatar ozziegt 06:50 PM 04-25-2012
So I've been talking to friends and family about it, and I think I might go with the L shaped option for the following reasons

1) I added some storage in the garage and there is also some storage in the utility closet. The amount of shelving with the L shaped version is not much less than the rectangular one.
2) The L shaped room gives an option to have some counterspace in the corner for placing drinks / snacks.
3) Without having to make room behind the last row for the doorway, I can place the last row farther from the screen...maybe even fit in some room for some more casual seating in the front.

So I am thinking the screen would go in the smaller part of the L (on the left wall in the diagram). Will this work acoustically? I don't know if the big open space on the left side will cause issues with the left surround channel.

edit: Can a mod please move this to the dedicated theater section?
tlogan6797's Avatar tlogan6797 08:37 AM 04-26-2012

One has the seats further from the screen, but can only seat about 8 people. I would like to be able to seat more.

I'm thinking you need to rethink this. How often do you really think you will have more than 8 people? There have been threads about the lack of interest friends show in wanting to come over often to watch movies.

I would think that even at 19' feet, more than 8 is unrealistic. I'm currently at 17' with one row of four (screen 108" wide) and I wouldn't want to be any closer. Eyeballs are right about 12' from the AT screen. If you are planning reclining chairs (As opposed to the bolt down, seat-flips-up-found-in-theaters style) you need at least 5' feet between rows.

Do a search on THX seating distance for some guidance (sorry I don't have the link handy) and think about your screen size. Also you need to think about surround speaker placement. The back row right against the back wall is not optimal.
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