Nick’s Attempt at a “Theater” - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 08:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Well I’ve been lurking/participating on this board in one way or another for probably 5 or 6 years now. But we bought a split-level house with a walk out basement a year or so ago. It is a wonderful house with a kitchen opening into a great room, a front formal living room, and a third living room in the basement. Well it seems that two livings rooms are enough for the two of us. So enter the home theater subforum . . .

I’m an engineer and therefore am inclined to do my theater layout in Solidworks. My goal is to someday have a 3D model of my entire house. Just as well start now. biggrin.gif This first picture is my tentative plan view of the room. You can tell that it isn’t quite a dedicated room, but the shape wouldn’t really lend itself to that anyways.

PIC1_PLAN.jpg
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post #2 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 08:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Here is a section cut of the room at the couch. Doesn’t really tell a whole lot, but shows the soffit and the doors on the side.
PIC2_ELEV.jpg

These are actually pictures of the room from a few weeks ago. I didn’t bother cleaning it up because messy ‘before’ pictures make the clean, tidy ‘after’ pictures look all that much better . . .

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post #3 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 08:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Where the screen will go
SCREEN_WALL.jpg

Where we’ll sit
SEAT_AREA.jpg

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post #4 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 08:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Trying to show how dark the room will be. I plan on doing some sort of blackout blinds or something on the windows.
SEAT_NOFLASH.jpg
SEAT_DARK.jpg

The stairs to the main floor
STAIRS.jpg

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post #5 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 08:17 AM - Thread Starter
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As you can tell, I haven’t *done* anything yet. My only set plans thus far are to paint the walls some sort of dark blue. I’m not sure, but I think we can make the green carpet work. It looks better in person than the pictures. We’re HUGE Iowa State University fans, so any wall space open will have ISU stuff on it.

I’m leaning towards the 5010 for my PJ and I want a retractable screen, though I could probably be talked out of that. I’m not sure if I’m RBE sensitive, but I don’t particularly care for gaming (down here) either. My WAF is high for a HT in general, but not high for multiple rows or theater type seats (not sure I’d want this anyways). WAF is partially why I am leaning towards the retractable screen. We don’t care if we see speakers and such, but don’t know if I want a screen on the wall all the time. Plus, that leaves more room for decorations eek.gif

But I welcome any comments, critiques, praises, suggestions, etc. I don’t really know about speaker placement, and I haven’t researched quite what to go with.

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post #6 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 11:00 AM
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Looks like a nice room and the layout works well. You already have the room created which is half the battle. I always say this but if you can get your hands on a projector ( i borrowed our work one) take it home some time and just try it out. I did that and my wife was instantly sold on the idea. It gives you a great reference also to screen size, and room layout.

Any idea on equipment? Budget?


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post #7 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 11:05 AM - Thread Starter
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I don't really have a strict budget, just a hope of 'bang for my buck.' I'm okay with paying more if something is obviously better.

I am leaning towards the 5010 for the PJ. And I'll probably get one of the latest crops of Denon AVRs. Don't know anything about speakers though, so I really need to lurk some more over there. I'm really leaning more towards an AT screen, so that may opening some doors for me.

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post #8 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 11:21 AM
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I'm personally looking forward to seeing the final pics of the widest deepest couch known to man. :-)
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post #9 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 11:31 AM
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The only benefit to an AT screen is to be able to put the speakers behind it. If it were ME, I would

1) turn the room around
2) hang a retractable screen in front of the window
3) move the couch a couple of feet forward for better surround placement

You'll need to place an AT screen at least 18" out from the wall (maybe more, depending on speaker footprint ). The couch against the wall is not optimum surround placement. A retractable screen against the wall allows you a couple of feet to move the couch forward for better surround. And you can use the screen (non-AT) to block the window.

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post #10 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 01:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by warrenP View Post

I'm personally looking forward to seeing the final pics of the widest deepest couch known to man. :-)

Me too! wink.gif

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post #11 of 69 Old 09-11-2012, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tlogan6797 View Post

The only benefit to an AT screen is to be able to put the speakers behind it. If it were ME, I would
1) turn the room around
2) hang a retractable screen in front of the window
3) move the couch a couple of feet forward for better surround placement
You'll need to place an AT screen at least 18" out from the wall (maybe more, depending on speaker footprint ). The couch against the wall is not optimum surround placement. A retractable screen against the wall allows you a couple of feet to move the couch forward for better surround. And you can use the screen (non-AT) to block the window.

Thanks for the advice. I was actually contemplating this the other day. I really like the idea of an AT screen, simply to hide the speakers (the more I read about it). I need to do some more research for sure. eek.gif

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post #12 of 69 Old 09-13-2012, 07:54 AM
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wilson_small.jpg

Hi-dee-HO there, neighbor!

Congrats on starting your own build thread. Another Iowan HT build - amazing! Good on ya!

My main reaction is to encourage you to not automatically assume you have to - or even ought to - put your Ht equipment in a shelf/media cabinet at the front of your room. With just a little bit of creativity you can run wiring to a nearby area where it won't (a) limit the size or placement of your screen; or (b) have the various equipment lights become a distraction during movie watching. Lots of us have found that using an out of the way equipment rack/closet simplifies matters as well as keeps the room much less cluttered (and improved WAF). Maybe placing it upfront turns out to be the route you have to take, but don't necessarily start with that as a given.

Also, I assume that sound containment is not a concern for you, right? Obviously you can't expect to keep the sound down in that area with the nearby open stairwell, or prevent sound from the rest of the house from being heard down there. Probably not a huge issue without kids, but just be aware of it, in case that changes later or you and your wife plan on regularly both generating noise in different areas at the same time.


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post #13 of 69 Old 09-13-2012, 08:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh great, hanesian showed up in my thread rolleyes.gif

biggrin.gifwink.gif

That's a good comment about the rack location. Somebody else mentioned this to me (not in the thread) and I am inclined to agree. I am really leaning towards a false wall with AT screen. I think I have room for an equipment room of sorts on the other side of the wall. The part that is behind where I show the screen is an unfinished shop/furnace room/brewing room/storage room/etc.

You are also correct that I kinda abandoned any sort of sound containment. Between the existing walls, ceilings, and the open stairway, I figured it was lost cause. I mean, it could be done but would be a lot of work and costly. We do nearly everything together (weird, right?) so me disturbing her with my movie isn't really a concern. And kids . . . yeah . . . eek.gif

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post #14 of 69 Old 09-13-2012, 02:41 PM
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Does the 'pub table' already exist? Is that something you would change? I had an idea when looking at your plan that might work better but it would require the removal of the pub table.

Try this on your plan - move the couch out ~6 feet so the front of the couch is even with the split doors on your north (?) wall (you'll probably want to shrink it down to typical couch size). Put a small pub table under the window on the West wall with a couple of pub chairs. Add end tables to either side of the couch (if you have room).

This will get your primary seating (couch) away from the back wall which will shorten your viewing distance and improve your surround sound. With a nice soffet w/light over the new 'pub area' I think that space behind the couch would work well and can be used for overflow seating when you have a crowd.

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post #15 of 69 Old 09-13-2012, 02:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NickTheGreat View Post

I’m leaning towards the 5010 for my PJ and I want a retractable screen, though I could probably be talked out of that.
-snip-
We don’t care if we see speakers and such, but don’t know if I want a screen on the wall all the time. Plus, that leaves more room for decorations

Another option - instead of a retractable screen you could have a fixed screen with curtains. Open the window blinds and close the screen curtains when you don't want to see the screen. Just throwing out the idea for you to consider.

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post #16 of 69 Old 09-13-2012, 07:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeerParty View Post

Does the 'pub table' already exist? Is that something you would change? I had an idea when looking at your plan that might work better but it would require the removal of the pub table.
Try this on your plan - move the couch out ~6 feet so the front of the couch is even with the split doors on your north (?) wall (you'll probably want to shrink it down to typical couch size). Put a small pub table under the window on the West wall with a couple of pub chairs. Add end tables to either side of the couch (if you have room).
This will get your primary seating (couch) away from the back wall which will shorten your viewing distance and improve your surround sound. With a nice soffet w/light over the new 'pub area' I think that space behind the couch would work well and can be used for overflow seating when you have a crowd.

Thanks for your input. No, the table isn't purchased and we haven't even really had our eyes on anything in particular. Just *thought* we'd like something like that. Your idea of putting something behind there has some merit.

I don't know why I'm so concerned about seating, I only have 1 or 2 friends. rolleyes.gifeek.gifsmile.gif

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post #17 of 69 Old 09-15-2012, 06:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NickTheGreat View Post

And kids . . . yeah . . . eek.gif

Never say never. Kids can be more fun than you might think! They give you a great excuse to be ridiculous in public without being immediately arrested! wink.gif

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post #18 of 69 Old 01-09-2014, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
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Bumping a dead thread is okay if it's your thread right? Right? eek.gif So I am finally getting on this thing. And posting here to keep myself more accountable. I've done other projects around the house, got married, etc, etc. Typical things that prevent progress on HT's. rolleyes.gif

I've kinda had a change in design plans and perhaps some sacrilegious ones. I am trying to lean less on this being a dedicated HT and more of a bonus room that can also be used for movies. I am intending to try to go the Murphy bed route on the screen wall, with a retractable screen. I've always been fascinated with those things. Build it into a cabinet, so when it's folded up, and screen is up, is pretty inconspicuous.

I am really shooting to make this thing usable by Superbowl. Yes, THIS COMING Superbowl. My unrealistic goal is to hang the PJ, screen, and have the room painted. And scab together something for the audio.

New plan view of the space:

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post #19 of 69 Old 01-09-2014, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
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I have little progress to show.

I am in the process of removing the classic 90's fluorescents and putting in some recessed LED fixtures. I have 3 of them up and tested out. I am very pleased with the amount and quality of the light.

20140109_060451_zpspddbqg4n.jpg

I also have a test area painted.
20140107_211605_zpsdl9xgshb.jpg

It's a good compromise between the light designer stuff that they do on HGTV and the jet black they do on AVS. wink.gif

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post #20 of 69 Old 01-09-2014, 01:15 PM - Thread Starter
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So the main reason I come here is for speaker help. I know as much about speakers as I do the rules for soccer (very little).

I have been reading a lot on here, and I think for my space and budget, I could be happy with a nice set of bookshelf speakers. See the view of the initial design for the screen wall.

2014Iso_zps8c78ee8d.jpg

I guess the main reason I'm updating this thread is to ask for input on speakers. My budget isn't real set in stone. If I could get all 5.1 speakers for under $2000 I'd be happy. $1500 more happy. My design requirements are a little funky with this setup. I probably need something that is under 13" in width. I'm not terribly limited in height or depth as I'm building this thing to suit.

I've just started listening to some speakers in person. I listened to some JBL's and Polks and wasn't real impressed with them. I've never heard Klipsch in person. I've entertained maybe Martin Logan since I could probably hear them at BestBuy Magnolia.

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post #21 of 69 Old 01-13-2014, 08:23 AM - Thread Starter
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So I went out Friday and ended up purchasing the Martin Logan 15's for my fronts, the 8 for my Center, and some 2's for the rears. The 15's aren't in until Thursday, but I was pleased with how they sounded in the store. Now onto the Receiver! eek.gif

I'm considering changing the screen wall so that the screen drops down in front of that cabinet deal. The guy at Bestbuy had a AT Retractable Screen which interested me. Could go much bigger screen with this approach.

Still debating on the PJ itself. Was thinking the Epson 5020 but now am thinking of looking at the 3030 or 5030. Could get more like a 102" screen if I go in the front of the wall.

Got my recessed lights in over the weekend. Even got the 3-way switch working, which is easier said than done.

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post #22 of 69 Old 01-13-2014, 12:18 PM
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The bigger the screen the better. I was actually going to ask what you plan on doing with the screen wall when the screen is up? With the cabinet built around it, it doesnt leave a bunch of options unless you plan on putting a TV back there. (that would by my plan)

If you don't have an issue with a white PJ, the Epson is a good choice. Otherwise you can get a JVC X35 for around the same price, and most would say get the JVC regardless.

"Damn, you can't get black levels like that on your projector!"
- My brother, just before he realized his LED display had died.

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post #23 of 69 Old 01-13-2014, 12:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Actually we are going to try to do a Murphy bed back there. Not sure exactly how that'll work, but I think it'll be interesting!

I'm actually running into issue with the throw distance of 13'-0". Even on the Epson that doesn't get me a huge screen, and that JVC is even worse in that regard frown.gif

**I actually think I'm reading the Projector Calculator wrong. I wasn't messing with the zoom. I'll read up on that JVC too smile.gif

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post #24 of 69 Old 01-13-2014, 01:41 PM
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13' should get you very usable numbers. That calculator is tricky, takes work just to learn how to use it right. smile.gif

You plan on doing a murphy bed that folds out of your screen wall? That will be a sight indeed. You'll definitely want to mount the screen infront of the cabinets, but that shortens the throw a bit.

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post #25 of 69 Old 01-14-2014, 01:33 PM
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I think you need to automate the lowering of the bed...... then you can put on a hard-core horror movie, and at a suitable point, slowly lower the bed and have a ghoulish figure sit up and scare the cr#p out of everyone!
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post #26 of 69 Old 01-14-2014, 01:46 PM - Thread Starter
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I think you need to automate the lowering of the bed...... then you can put on a hard-core horror movie, and at a suitable point, slowly lower the bed and have a ghoulish figure sit up and scare the cr#p out of everyone!

I'd consider that, except I'd probably fat-finger the remote and scare myself! eek.gifbiggrin.gif
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post #27 of 69 Old 01-21-2014, 08:44 AM - Thread Starter
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So I ordered the Epson 5030 from BestBuy on Friday. Should be here on Thursday. They threw in the mount for free because I'm a good guy like that wink.gif

Got the room all painted over the weekend. Not a good way to spend a day off (Monday) but needed to be done. smile.gif

Made a call, trying to get a screen here in a little over a week! eek.gif

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post #28 of 69 Old 01-21-2014, 12:27 PM
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What screen are you ordering?

In a pinch you can make a frame, stretch black out cloth over it, and have a screen within a few hours. I had a BOC screen for just over a year, worked well for under $150

Congrats on the projector.

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post #29 of 69 Old 01-21-2014, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
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I have thought about a contingency plan like that. Hopefully it won't come to that . . . eek.gif

I'm going with a 110" Da-Lite Screen. Retractable, AT smile.gif

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post #30 of 69 Old 01-27-2014, 08:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Projector is up. HDMI Ran in ceiling, Outlet installed.



You can also see the rears are wired and installed. Need to wire front end yet, but that is easy. No wire snaking involved!

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NickTheGreat is offline  
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