BillyM's first house - first media-room build - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 06-07-2012, 08:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi folks. After a few years of reading quietly, I figured it time I actually contribute a little to this fantastic community.

Having had a few make-do setups involving flat-screen televisions in existing rooms over the years, I thought my next room would be a full build.
...little did I know how MUCH of a build it would end up being. Ducting, plumbing, electrical, structural; everything needed attention...

Dec2008
First lets talk about what I started with. It was a 33x15 semi-sub-grade walk-out basement, one long stud wall, block for the other three.
Stairwell, big windows, below-joist water lines, 2x20a screw-in fuses for the whole house., ducting in the way, and crap doors posed problems.
...oh, and it was a bare room, so in addition to fixing all the stuff that needed it, I actually had to design/build the entire room too...
(Standing at the front-right main speaker shooting back towards the seating area.)
08-10-17%2520NewHouse%2520015.jpg

Dec2008
I noticed some slight water damage patterns on the wall, but thought nothing really of it. ...basements get wet once in a while, right?
Shortly after closing (2009), while imagining my future theater room, I leaned against the stud wall. It moved. A lot. ...ahh crap...
(Standing in front of the screen, looking at the left wall where it meets the front.)
08-12-14%2520HouseDestruction%2520013.jpg

Dec2008
So I tear out the entire load-bearing center wall (all 33ft) and use a 20ton jack to level the house and make room for the new wall studs.
I call this the "hold my beer and watch this" phase or the "Plaster Disaster". Note: Plaster houses don't like parts being raised 1-2" suddenly.
Right around this time, my better half asks, "can we make a hole here so I don't have to go into the garage to do laundry?" I grumble, then comply.
08-12-23%2520HouseConstruction%2520013.jpg

Apr2011
Some time passes, we remodel the entire upstairs, rewire the entire house, destroy the yard with a 9,000lb excavator, all sorts of fun stuff.
I finally got started, decided the screen would be at the front wall, back 10ft of the room (at the stairs) gets divided off to a bedroom/office.
...then the studs went up (with spacing to allow for exact placement of in-wall surrounds) and electrical/water/ducting all got moved.
(Standing at the screen looking back towards the seating area.)
IMG_0141.JPG

Nov2011
Wiring went in for power, lights, projector (you can see the recess-box I built), screen, etc with all signal lines running back to the bedroom.
I volume-matched the in-wall cavities where surrounds would be and sealed them up tight as rock went on the walls, hoping for good results.
(Standing at the front right speaker location, shooting back towards the seating location.)
IMG_0808.JPG

Dec2011
To this point in my life, I had never paid more than $20 for a gallon of paint. Holy crap does pricier paint go on nice!
A co-worker of my lady's had ordered 7gal of a gray with "too much magenta" at $38/gallon, wants $75 for it all.
I could have gone slightly darker, but I want this to be a multi-use room, not a cave. (again at the right main speaker)
IMG_0853.JPG

Mar2012
Surrounds go in (cavities stuffed with fiberfill), install trim and get carpet done, wires get toned and labeled, and it is nearly operational!
Well, I had to install the projector, and the screen, and the receiver, and the PC, etc etc etc in the bedroom behind too...
(Again, at the front right speaker location.)
IMG_1009.JPG
(At the seating location looking forward, for a change!)
IMG_1014.JPG

May2012
So that left filling the room with furniture, speaker placement, projector calibration, and general "fiddling-with" to get it right.
I modified a speaker stand for the center and tiered the couch/love-seat setup with bed risers with plans for a real riser in the future.
(Again, at the front right coner looking back)
IMG_1026.JPG
(In the center of the back row of seating)
IMG_1025.JPG

I still have the ducting to wrap (black speaker cloth over an OC705/aluminum frame is a thought, but the room is flat working for me at this point.
I will move the bookshelf from behind the right speaker (in-case I want to take any more pictures from there) and build a hush-box over the projector.
Impressions? I'm stoked. All surrounds are equidistant and really "surround" you with ambient sounds. The room sounds very balanced with the AS-F2's.
The screen size (100") fits great, and being able to shut out all ambient light at any time is excellent! 1080p is amazing for a previously non-hd person.

...just for fun, here is the before/after. It seems like it took forever, but some people will argue that 3yrs IS forever.
All I know is that I had a good time doing it, and never would have made it without you folks here at AVSforum, so thanks.
Before
08-10-17%2520NewHouse%2520015.jpg
After
IMG_1009.JPG

--billyM
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post #2 of 7 Old 06-07-2012, 08:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Work/Materials &Equipment lists updated...

I had a good friend who works in construction come lend a hand with most of this, so I am splitting the costs into work/materials so folks who can do all the work themselves can only be concerned with the right-hand column.

Work/Materials:
Rebuild support wall - $0/$150
Plumbing tuck in joists - $200/$200
New framing/structure - $200/$300
Duct fabricate rehang - $250/$150
Insulation walls/floors - $100/$250
Sheet-rock installation - $100/$350
Electric wiring and light - $200/$250
A/V and network wiring - $0/$175
Tape/finish the drywall - $800/$100
Solid-core doors (four) - $100/$300
Paint/trim/touchup/etc - $0/$250
Carpet on floors/stairs - $200/725

Total labor/help costs: $2150
Total material costs: $3200


Equpiment:
Athena AS-F2 mains - $350
Athena AS-C1 center - $75
Monoprice 8" surrounds - $150
Klipsch RW-12D subwoofer - $300
Pioneer VSX-1021 receiver - $300
Viewsonic Pro8200 projector - $675
Elite 100" motorized screen - $0 w/projector
Computer/upgrades/monitor - $1000
Lutron IR-controlled dimmer - $60
Assorted cables/accessories - $40
Furniture in both new room - $1000

Total eqipment/furniture costs: $3950

Absolute total costs of everything: (minus my time, I flat refuse to add that in...)
$9300

I hope this helps others, because I had not added everything up until now...
...and now I somewhat wish that I didn't. "Honey, we're watching two movies tonight!"

That said, $9300 and a few nights each week working to add an extra bedroom and theater to the house...

-billyM
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-08-2012, 08:54 AM
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Well done. I like the in wall surrounds. Nice touch. I also like that you can raise the screen and reveal that sweet window.

Very nice room all round.
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post #4 of 7 Old 06-11-2012, 03:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks. Tonally I was surprised at how close the Monoprice in-walls match the Athenas. Between that and the sealed chambers they sit in, I am able to push them as hard as I would like and they continue to smoothly compliment the mains. ...all while taking up less room than the smallest micro-on-wall.

Someone on another forum sparked my interests on my exact costs, so I tallied them all up and have input them in the second post...

I hope this helps folks more closely estimate their own project costs going forward.

--billyM
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post #5 of 7 Old 06-19-2012, 10:33 AM
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Very nice! I just bought my first house and am looking at redoing the basement for a home theater room. What is the throw distance?
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post #6 of 7 Old 06-20-2012, 08:01 AM
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cool.gif I also like the window/screen idea

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post #7 of 7 Old 06-21-2012, 06:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matt25rs View Post

Very nice! I just bought my first house and am looking at redoing the basement for a home theater room. What is the throw distance?

Throw distance is right at 11ft, which just throws the 100" screen for Viewsonic and Mitsubishi DLP's.
I hope the information helps you, and please let me know if you have any other questions.
Quote:
Originally Posted by NickTheGreat View Post

cool.gif I also like the window/screen idea

Thanks. I should take pictures of the room under natural light. We effectively never use the lights in the room due to the huge 4'x4' windows in each, but when it's movie time, the bedroom door gets pulled and the screen goes down, BLACKING out the room. If i were to ever do it again, that is one thing I would NOT change. I'm very happy with it.

--billyM
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