Done Deal's Contemporary Living Room Home Theater Build - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm in the planning stages of renovating my multipurpose living room/home theater. I'm trying to work a projector and screen into the design phase to replace a 55" Samsung LCD LED, as it's been severely outgunned by my recent purchase of a Klipsch RF-7II system a few months ago. I've got some projector noob questions, here's my story.

I've already spent a good deal of time researching other parts of the deal such as building materials, sound treatments, ways to block light, etc. I will be placing solid hardwood flooring on the main wall (~14' tall, 18' wide) as an accent, and about half way up will be building a soffit of sorts and will likely cover that in a thin brick product. In that soffit I would like to house a motorized ~120" screen and some can lights. I understand solid wood isn't the best for sound properties, but this is a living room of a house first and an entertainment room second (although all time spent in the room is watching TV/Movies). Basically I'm willing to make some sacrifices to achieve a certain look.

I'm not sure how you guys make the drawings of your rooms, so I'll do my best to describe it and supplement that with pictures. The room itself is roughly 18'x22', and is unfortunately open to the kitchen as with most all open-concept newer builds in Arizona, with just a "pony wall" and arc separating the 2 rooms. The ceilings are vaulted, with the display wall at 14' tall, and the opposing wall at 8' tall.

Here are some pictures of the space.







Immediate changes will be removing the bookcase on the back wall, mount the Klipsch RS62-II speakers to the back wall (they are not currently connected), and I will be building window plugs for sound and light control which won't be a loss as we never open those blinds as it looks directly at a brick exterior wall about 10 feet out... not much scenery. The couch and chairs would remain in the same layout but would be pushed back several feet if I were to go with a projector.

I plan to make a "curtain box" like you would see in hotels, the entire length of the windows and sliding doors and use blackout curtains to control light, even though watching in the daytime isn't a big deal as like all of you we have TV's all over the house (bedrooms, office, pool room/man cave) where we watch normal everyday TV, we typically just watch Blurays and more prominent TV (Dexter/Homeland, etc) and Sports (mostly MMA/UFC) along with some music in this living room and it's rarely used in the daytime - it'd just be nice to have the ability to day watch if I get that urge. I'll be getting a Mid Atlantic rack and insetting it to the main wall to the right side and taking a small space away from my master closet (you can bet your A that space is coming from "my" side wink.gif ), I can see the benefits to having the EQ on a wall other than the viewing wall, but I can't come up with any other options that would work and I've always seen the EQ lights and it doesn't bother me but I'd just prefer the equipment be up and out of the way.

Which brings me to my current questions:
What screens should I be looking at for 16:9 120" that are motorized? I'd really like to stay in the $1000 ballpark, but I don't know if that is realistic or not. I've looked around at some screen brands but am not really sure what I need. I want it to be reliable and offer a decent picture, but I'm not looking for that absolute best screen where you start spending $3-$10k+ for. I don't need an AT screen because I won't have room behind the giant Klipsch speakers anyway. Not looking for anything too fancy, something I can wire up a simple switch to raise and lower it, and it will obviously need to be top mountable where I'd like to make it flush it the soffit I'll build. The goal is that I can go from a clean and contemporary living room to a bonafide theater room in a minute or two.

Projector - I need to be realistic and say there will definitely be some ambient light during some viewing times. Even with a blackout curtain across the patio wall, I'll get some light from other sources in the day. At night I can make it virtually black so not much of a concern there for Bluray movies. I want the projector to be bright enough so that I could turn on a light in the kitchen and still have decent picture quality. When I have buddies over for UFC nights we don't tend to watch in 100% darkness so just turning on a single light somewhere would be preferred. I don't care about 3D, if it happens to have it that is okay but not a selling point for me. Main concern is 2D performance, picture quality, and of course it has to be 1080p. It looks like the projection distance would be somewhere around 20' (Back wall to front wall?). Budget for projector is around the $3k mark. I've looked at a few of the top rated units, JVC RS45 series, Epson 5010 series, Sony VPL-HW30. Which would be best for me? Are there options I'm overlooking?

Wiring Projector – I only need a single video line but I know there tends to be issues with longer HDMI runs. Just quickly looking at it at a rough measurement, I’d say the HDMI cable would probably be somewhere around 35-40 feet by the time it got to the projector. I get the cheaper short HDMI cables all the time and they were work great but I know people run into issues as the HDMII runs get longer. Any particular HDMI cables people recommend that they have used successfully at longer runs? I see a lot of options for decent brands (mediabridge) at 50 feet, just don't know how much success people at have these lengths.


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post #2 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 01:13 PM
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With everything you have going on in that room (big open plan, lots of ambient light sources), I'd suggest you think about a large (70-80"+) flat panel on that wall instead. With all the money you'll spend trying to make that screen look good in that room, a very nice 80" panel will most likely give better results for similar $$$.

I'm all for the projector - but with the costs of the really big panels down at reasonable levels, getting one of those for rooms with lots of light issues means you get to put your money into the panel instead of light control. And you can use it freely 24 hours of the day without turning the whole house into a cave.

My opinion, I'm sure others will chime in...

Jeff


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post #3 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 01:32 PM - Thread Starter
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I hear you Jeff. It's something I thought long and hard about when the commercially available Sharp 70-80" panels hit stores 1+ year ago. The 55" is dwarfed by the room and is hard to see at the viewing distance even with the seating moved forward in the room as it is in these pictures. A 70" isn't nearly enough of an upgrade. I measured out an 80", which is $4,000-$4,500 easily, and I don't think I'd be happy with that size either.

The projector is something I've resisted up till now due to lighting, but I'm willing to completely black out all windows in that room to get the screen size. It's only the two of us in the house, so turning off the lights in the kitchen isn't a big deal for us to watch movies, it's not like we have a house full of kids that will be running around, flilcking lights on, etc. I don't think much light will be left to overcome. All normal daytime TV watching is already done in other rooms anyway.


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post #4 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:03 PM
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Been doing some of the same research myself, for my current living room. Take any of my research with a grain of salt, as I don't own a projector or screen yet.

With a little research I found Elite CineTension 2 screen. They seem to have a pretty good reputation, and the price is in your ballpark at $1020.

People seem to recommend a light cannon for any multi-purpose room. One of the best reviewed is the newer Epson Home Cinema 5020UB Projector which will run you about $2600, also within your budget. There's almost assuredly a thread here at avs just for that model. Here's a pro review: Epson 5020 Review

I'd seriously consider at least a few acoustic panels on that wood front wall. You can get some really nice looking panels that will help tame your sound. Google "acoustic art panels"; most will custom make panels with your photos/artwork if you can't find a pre-built panel you like.

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post #5 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:15 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm fairly certain we are the same person. confused.gif

I like doing my fair share of research as well, and from my research I came up with both the CineTension 2 screen and the Epson projector. smile.gif That being said, I have no experience with any AV projectors or screens. Just the junk that is suitable for office use. So I'm basically looking for somebody that has experience implementing products into these sorts of room for advice. I'd prefer not to order a projector that is rated really well for 2D like the JVC, get it home and not be able to see anything because it's not bright enough and have to send it back. The Epson was my front runner based on the recent avsforum article and reading the replies.

The entire room needs a good deal of sound work, and the tile floor isn't doing it any favors. Even still, I'm happy with how it sounds to my ears. I just need to contain it better for now. I got complaints to my HOA after watching a couple movies. I of course feel bad because at the time I didn't know how much sound was leaking out. During this reno (of sorts) I'm going to have a company come in and do the spray foam sound insulation on all 3 walls, and the back all all the way to the kitchen. I'll still have the windows, but heavy drapes like I have planned will help that will have to be good enough. The back windows as I said I am going to create window plugs with both blocking and treating properties - Still have a little research to do on that. A couple panels on the front wall as you suggested would probably do the trick.


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post #6 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:19 PM
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I measured out an 80", which is $4,000-$4,500 easily, and I don't think I'd be happy with that size either.

Yeah, that's going to be what it comes down to... How about the 90" one? biggrin.gifbiggrin.gif
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The projector is something I've resisted up till now due to lighting, but I'm willing to completely black out all windows in that room to get the screen size.

And the breakfast nook sliding door, and the kitchen window, and the front door transom. You've got a lot of light sources coming in... Now, you may be able to get acceptable results without worrying about those other windows, can't say for sure without seeing it. But I know it would kill me if I spent all that money on a setup to find out it's not really usable until 9pm...

The other consideration is for non-movie usage. If you watch sports and have folks over like I do for UFC events and the Super Bowl - being able to have a party in the room with lots of ambient light is important. When I host these, the lights are all on in the game room and family room, with dim lighting in the theater - all showing the event. Folks that are "serious" about the game will go sit in the theater, other folks will watch from the bar, etc. where there's normal ambient light.

Jeff


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post #7 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, that's going to be what it comes down to... How about the 90" one? biggrin.gifbiggrin.gif
And the breakfast nook sliding door, and the kitchen window, and the front door transom. You've got a lot of light sources coming in... Now, you may be able to get acceptable results without worrying about those other windows, can't say for sure without seeing it. But I know it would kill me if I spent all that money on a setup to find out it's not really usable until 9pm...

The other consideration is for non-movie usage. If you watch sports and have folks over like I do for UFC events and the Super Bowl - being able to have a party in the room with lots of ambient light is important. When I host these, the lights are all on in the game room and family room, with dim lighting in the theater - all showing the event. Folks that are "serious" about the game will go sit in the theater, other folks will watch from the bar, etc. where there's normal ambient light.

Jeff

90" TV? That's when my wallet becomes too small. wink.gif

I'm already planning to cover the sliding glass door. The kitchen window has a wood plantation style shutters that blocks all light when closed. I will probably get a matching wood plantation shutter by the kitchen table. You're right about the window above the front door, I can't do anything about that, though it is a good 50' away from where the projector would be and is quite small. I guess ultimately I just need to find out if I could turn on a single light above my kitchen table, and still see the screen well. If I can, that's all I need for UFC fight nights and it will be perfect. If I can't, then this is probably a no go. I really don't watch TV there daily though, and don't watch a ton of sports. Maybe a game every so often but I'm not the type of person to wake up sunday AM and watch a game. It's really a night or two a week we watch a movie in there and that's about it, just looking to improve the experience and add a little more style at the same time.


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post #8 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:35 PM
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I got complaints to my HOA after watching a couple movies. I of course feel bad because at the time I didn't know how much sound was leaking out. During this reno (of sorts) I'm going to have a company come in and do the spray foam sound insulation on all 3 walls, and the back all all the way to the kitchen. I'll still have the windows, but heavy drapes like I have planned will help that will have to be good enough. The back windows as I said I am going to create window plugs with both blocking and treating properties - Still have a little research to do on that. A couple panels on the front wall as you suggested would probably do the trick.

If the person who complained shares the TV wall with you, I'd seriously consider de-coupling that whole wall. Especially if you're already tearing it out. Check out the dedicated theater threads. You'll find out a lot there.
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post #9 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:39 PM - Thread Starter
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If the person who complained shares the TV wall with you, I'd seriously consider de-coupling that whole wall. Especially if you're already tearing it out. Check out the dedicated theater threads. You'll find out a lot there.

What do you mean by sharing the wall with me? I'm in a house, on it's own land.


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post #10 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:45 PM
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What do you mean by sharing the wall with me? I'm in a house, on it's own land.

Gotcha. Thought you might be transmitting sound through the wall ala townhouse type setup.
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post #11 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 02:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Gotcha. Thought you might be transmitting sound through the wall ala townhouse type setup.

God no, yeah I own this house and it's on a pretty typical AZ plot between 1/4 and 1/3 acre. It does get fairly loud, I'll give them that. I didn't realize it at the time and something I'm a little more conscious of now until I can start on the sound treatments.

I don't know who complained, but I can say that it wasn't my neighbor right next to me which is the only one I talk to. They are the house behind the back wall in these pictures where the bookcase is... which puts the start of their house about 20 feet away from that back wall. That said, they said the bass from the subs was giving them some shakes and they just wanted to let me have my fun because they new the speakers were new. Of course I felt bad because I like these particular neighbors a lot. It's hard to imagine who else could think it's that loud as anybody else would be substantially further away. The neighbor to the side of me is at least 70-80 feet from us and there house is below our grade by quite a bit, and on the other side of the viewing wall is the rest of my house containing a closet, 2 bathrooms, and 4 bedrooms and a garage, some space, brick wall, and some more space before their house. Can't imagine it could make it over there and be that loud.

We are actually now under the impression the report was erroneous and was actually the neighbor to the side of me (out the sliding glass door side), because he's been up late partying with music on outside playing it pretty loud. I don't care though. The same thing happened shortly after I bought this place 3 something years ago, we got a report for a dog barking constantly and it was a house diagonal to ours. My dogs are quiet, and this dog was a tiny yapping type dog that would never stop.

I'm going to order a db meter and do before and after tests with the same content. There are no noise ordinances in my neighborhood so technically there is no merit, but I don't want to piss of the one neighbor I like. smile.gif


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post #12 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 03:14 PM
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90" TV? That's when my wallet becomes too small. wink.gif

Ask Congress to buy it for you... biggrin.gif
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I really don't watch TV there daily though, and don't watch a ton of sports. Maybe a game every so often but I'm not the type of person to wake up sunday AM and watch a game. It's really a night or two a week we watch a movie in there and that's about it, just looking to improve the experience and add a little more style at the same time.

You should expect your usage of the room to change... If you put a big screen (regardless if it's 80" or 120") in that room, you'll probably want to use it more often. Just from the pictures of the room, I would have expected that to be your primary viewing location anyway.
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God no, yeah I own this house and it's on a pretty typical AZ plot between 1/4 and 1/3 acre. It does get fairly loud, I'll give them that. I didn't realize it at the time and something I'm a little more conscious of now until I can start on the sound treatments.

Really think it was a mistake and not your movie watching... Very hard to believe that folks would be able to hear your movie playing, in their house, 1/4 acre away. Now, if you're playing a Michael Bay movie at 3am at ear-splitting volume, then you are the problem. (for any of those reasons smile.gif ) Now, if you're shaking the house with your subwoofer, that could also explain it...

Easy check is to put on some music, crank up the volume so that it's "too loud" to be comfortable in the room, and then go outside. Best to do late in the evening when ambient noise will be low (not too late!). Can you hear it from your property line?

The biggest sound gaps for a house are the windows - if you don't have modern double-glazed windows, that would be an upgrade worth looking into for that room if you plan to stay there a while and the noise is a problem...


Jeff


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post #13 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 03:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Ask Congress to buy it for you... biggrin.gif
You should expect your usage of the room to change... If you put a big screen (regardless if it's 80" or 120") in that room, you'll probably want to use it more often. Just from the pictures of the room, I would have expected that to be your primary viewing location anyway.
Really think it was a mistake and not your movie watching... Very hard to believe that folks would be able to hear your movie playing, in their house, 1/4 acre away. Now, if you're playing a Michael Bay movie at 3am at ear-splitting volume, then you are the problem. (for any of those reasons smile.gif ) Now, if you're shaking the house with your subwoofer, that could also explain it...

Easy check is to put on some music, crank up the volume so that it's "too loud" to be comfortable in the room, and then go outside. Best to do late in the evening when ambient noise will be low (not too late!). Can you hear it from your property line?

The biggest sound gaps for a house are the windows - if you don't have modern double-glazed windows, that would be an upgrade worth looking into for that room if you plan to stay there a while and the noise is a problem...


Jeff

I believe you are correct about the noise complaint. No Michael Bay at 3am for this guy. smile.gif

The house has modern double pain windows, built in 2006.

Oddly, even with the speakers, it's not my primary viewing place. Most of our TV watching is done in the bedroom. Either in bed or a couch with recliners on either side. After a long day at work, something is nice about going in there and just watching regular TV from the DVR. Days I work from home from my office I watch all the other stuff on my DVR and general TV watching. For whatever reason I save the living room for more important and critical viewing. Content that does it justice. Most TV sitcoms and reality crap are a waste of effort to watch with it, and I'd imagine that would only compound with a projector.

Here are some pictures taken at 4:15pm AZ time with no lights on and the afternoon "sun" coming in through the slider. Most all ambient light comes from the slider and that is common.





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post #14 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 03:43 PM
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Oddly, even with the speakers, it's not my primary viewing place. Most of our TV watching is done in the bedroom. Either in bed or a couch with recliners on either side. After a long day at work, something is nice about going in there and just watching regular TV from the DVR. Days I work from home from my office I watch all the other stuff on my DVR and general TV watching.

Well, there's one easy way to avoid reality TV... smile.gif

Do you not have DVR access from the living room? That would certainly explain the usage compared to the bedroom.
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For whatever reason I save the living room for more important and critical viewing. Content that does it justice. Most TV sitcoms and reality crap are a waste of effort to watch with it, and I'd imagine that would only compound with a projector.

Understand that myself - I don't use the dedicated theater for casual TV watching, either. But that's a dedicated space, not my living room. Your utilization of that space should be something to think about. From the pictures that appears to be a significant percentage of your square footage. Turning a big chunk of your house into a "special occasion usage" feels like the wrong approach, IMO.

I found that my theater is too dark to read it, for example. If I could raise the ambient light in there higher, such that I could read comfortably in there, I might use it more for listening. Same for casual TV watching - where I'd just want to read the paper while sort-of-watching.

I'd suggest that you take a look at why you don't use the living room now, and think about how you could better utilize the space before going further.

All my opinion. YMMV. smile.gif

Jeff


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post #15 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 04:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, there's one easy way to avoid reality TV... smile.gif

Do you not have DVR access from the living room? That would certainly explain the usage compared to the bedroom.
Understand that myself - I don't use the dedicated theater for casual TV watching, either. But that's a dedicated space, not my living room. Your utilization of that space should be something to think about. From the pictures that appears to be a significant percentage of your square footage. Turning a big chunk of your house into a "special occasion usage" feels like the wrong approach, IMO.

I found that my theater is too dark to read it, for example. If I could raise the ambient light in there higher, such that I could read comfortably in there, I might use it more for listening. Same for casual TV watching - where I'd just want to read the paper while sort-of-watching.

I'd suggest that you take a look at why you don't use the living room now, and think about how you could better utilize the space before going further.

All my opinion. YMMV. smile.gif

Jeff

I've got access to the DVR in all rooms, it's a MOCA network on Cisco settops. My "reality TV" comprises of shows like Gold Rush. Not perfect TV by any means, but not the Kardashians either.

I have a mancave on the other side of the kitchen with a pool table, couch, TV, stuff like that. That's the casual place I can go hang out and is usually where I'm at when I have friends over. It's just too small to accommodate a full system with a receiver, speakers, and all that. We'd watch fights there, but we get too into it to be playing pool. I guess it's odd that we (my gf and I) don't spend more time in the living room, but its a 2800 sq ft house and it's just 2 of us. We have a large comfortable master suite and spend a lot of time there, it's basically a little apartment. It's a really comfortable place to go after work. If I do this projector, I'm actually going to swap the 55" Samsung over to the mancave.

I'd certainly be the first to say it's not ideal using a living room like this, but unfortunately there isn't any basements in AZ and 99% of the homes that have bonus rooms such as my mancave are open concept without walls, and they are still above ground. Most of those are even worse than what I have, they are in 2 story homes and overlook the living area and kitchen.

As far as it still being a living room, that's why I want to maintain a living room style. Being able to open the drapes, and put the projector screen up, it's be perfectly comfortable to throw some music on, read, all the things you'd do in a living room but watch TV with the drapes open. That's okay with me since we don't even do that now.


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post #16 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 04:16 PM
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Nice speaker setup. Very nice. I'll second the Epson suggestion as the other two are far from light cannons and more suitable to dedicate rooms.

I think you are well on your way to making this work as you are committed to making the room dark as possible. I think that if you go into this with realistic expectations (which by your post you seem to have a good handle on this) you will have a great multipurpose room.

I too usually save the theater for football, movies, and those "event" type of things, with my regular TV watching done elsewhere on actual TV sets.

As I stated I think you can create a very nice space, just as long as your expectations stay in check.

Will be watching with interest for sure.

Good luck.

Regards,

RTROSE


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post #17 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 05:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks RTROSE. I just read through some of your build thread and am very impressed with the results! Sorry to hear about your your golden retriever, that's the absolute worst. frown.gif As you can tell I am a dog lover, have 3 myself.

I'm a little unclear looking at the Epson line, what exactly the differences are between the models. Is the Epson 5020UB the model we are talking about here? How does it differ from the 5010? Their site is a little unclear on that. I guess if I go with the 5020UB and that CineTension 2 screen I'd be a little under budget for the AV portion, which is always a plus. The solid hardwood is going to be somewhere around $1500-$2500 depending on how exotic I want to go. I'm looking for something wide planked of medium-dark brown color with a lot of darker deviations that give it a lot of character that has grooves between the planks and there are quite a few options I've found meat the criteria. The thin brick product isn't all that expensive, some paint, and some wood to frame the soffit, AV rack structure/support and build the curtain box. Luckily the room is already 'built', so it's not like I'm building a room from scratch. I'm contemplating taking the line that the soffit covered in thin brick makes, and covering the curtain box with that same thin brick material so that it continues the line all the way across the room.... just not sure if that particular portion of the project would be worth it.

I've got pretty much every tool I will need. Nice Dewalt miter saw, air compressor, nail gun, circular saw, reciprocating saw, stuff like that.

I'd say the biggest other expenses will be the AV rack, which I think I priced somewhere around $1400 with the faceplates a few months ago, and the drapes. I'll probably also take this opportunity to stop using the PS3 as a bluray player (I don't play games ) and get the new Oppo 103.

The biggest unknown is how much the sound blocking spray foam job will be, I haven't gotten that quote yet and the project is dependent upon doing that as it needs to be done at the right time in the project timeline. Which reminds me, I've got to call my guy that does that. wink.gif

I think I can do everything I want for less than $10k. I know, I know. Famous last words. rolleyes.gif


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post #18 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 05:57 PM
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Hey thanks for the compliment regarding my theater, it really was a labor of blood, sweat, tears, and ah oh yeah love. Yup the passing of Sampson was really tough as he was my "construction buddy". I did notice your "fan club" in your photos, nothing like a dog to show you unconditional love after a long hard day at work.

Well the difference between the 5010 and 5020 is the 5020 is the current year model and has slightly higher contrast than the 5010. Other than that they are pretty much identical.

You might want to check craigslist for the midaltantic racks, they are expensive but sometimes you can get lucky and find one a whole lot cheaper. I know several people around here have found theirs in other ways/outlets.

I have the Oppo 93. The Oppo's really are great players. You will be pleased with that selection for sure. I would be careful depending on the spray foam to block noise. Spray foam is fantastic for thermal insulation, not so great for acoustic insulation I would look a little more into the sound insulation before you spend a lot on spray foam and be disappointed. I used spray foam, for my basement and love it (for its thermal properties), not trying to knock its use, just know its limitations.

Regards,

RTROSE


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post #19 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
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I ran into a company that does the insulation, helping my girlfriend's son buy a house. A house he was looking at had insulation issues and we brought a company out to quote the repairs. In talking with him, they have 2 different products. One is a thermal insulation and another for sound insulation. I can't talk to the technical differences, but the acoustic foam blocks up to 50db but doesn't have as good of thermal properties. They drill small holes in the drywall and can install it that way. If the quote is reasonable I will probably give it a try.


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post #20 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 06:25 PM - Thread Starter
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www.retrofoamaz.com is the company.


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post #21 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 07:09 PM
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Interesting stuff. If it actually does what it says it does that might be a viable option for you. I bet you will get sticker shock though with your price estimate. I did initially as it was about three times more expensive than regular insulation on average. It did make an immediate difference in the way my basement felt.

Regards,

RTROSE


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post #22 of 152 Old 01-10-2013, 07:58 PM - Thread Starter
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That's what I'm afraid of! When I was speaking to the rep he didn't seem to think it would be too expensive but I'm sure he'll quote a number higher than I want to spend. Such is life...


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post #23 of 152 Old 01-11-2013, 08:33 AM - Thread Starter
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The more research I do, the better the Epson 5020UB looks on paper. it looks like there were a few improvements to it over the previous year's 5010 model and would be a good fit for my goals.

I'm seeing a mixed bag of reviews on the CineTension 2 screen. Amazon only has 3 reviews, 1 guy had wrinkling issues on the bottom of the screen that were fixable but apparently not that easily, and another guy blew a fuse on the motor that raises and lowers the screen which apparently is not easy to access once mounted. This makes me think I should put some sort of trap door at the top of the soffit so that if anything happens I can get to it... because covering the soffit in brick and then having something maintenance related happen and have to tear it all out to get to it does not sound appealing at all.


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post #24 of 152 Old 01-12-2013, 08:56 AM - Thread Starter
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I've read a ton more reviews on the CineTension 2 screen on this forum and I've been scared away. WAY too many uncorrectable wrinkling issues. I don't think there is a motorized screen in my budget that will have the reliability I'm after, so I'm leaning towards a fixed screen now. This isn't what I wanted design-wise but I really don't have a choice.

The Elite EZframe is getting great reviews so maybe I will go that route, and it's well within my budget.


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post #25 of 152 Old 01-14-2013, 11:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Any other thoughts from the experts?

Thinking I will order the rack soon as I need that to frame out the opening. There was one on craigslist but the post was old and chances are it sold and the guy never closed the posting.


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post #26 of 152 Old 01-14-2013, 12:09 PM
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Thinking I will order the rack soon as I need that to frame out the opening. There was one on craigslist but the post was old and chances are it sold and the guy never closed the posting.

If you're going to use a Middle Atlantic rack (don't think you mentioned it by name, but you said "big expense" smile.gif ), you can get all the dimensions and specs from the website, you won't need it on-hand to do the framing.

Jeff


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post #27 of 152 Old 01-14-2013, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah I'm getting a Middle Atlantic rack, probably a 29u Slim 5. I have the dimensions on the site but I'd rather have it in my possession to make sure I have everything 100% accounted for. Either way I need to buy it so might as well buy it now as it's not like these things go "on sale" or anything. wink.gif

The rack itself is cheap, the custom shelves, options, blanks, vents and shipping add up quick, to no one's surprise.


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post #28 of 152 Old 01-14-2013, 02:11 PM
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Yeah I'm getting a Middle Atlantic rack, probably a 29u Slim 5. I have the dimensions on the site but I'd rather have it in my possession to make sure I have everything 100% accounted for. Either way I need to buy it so might as well buy it now as it's not like these things go "on sale" or anything. wink.gif

Actually, occasionally, they do! biggrin.gif
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The rack itself is cheap, the custom shelves, options, blanks, vents and shipping add up quick, to no one's surprise.

That's true, if you're just buying the bare rack now, not a huge quantity of cash to spend now... And will give you piece of mind.


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post #29 of 152 Old 01-14-2013, 03:50 PM - Thread Starter
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No kidding? I've been watching them but haven't seen any movement in pricing in the last 5 months or so.

I will probably just order it all in the next week or so, no point in holding off because I'm looking to start "construction" around mid-March. Going to go ahead and get the order in for the Oppo as well.

I've been very indecisive about the screen size and gain, probably because I'm used to knowing more about things and I still know relatively little about projectors.


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post #30 of 152 Old 01-14-2013, 04:09 PM
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No kidding?

Yep. No kidding... I may have gotten lucky and hit the guy's one-time-we-need-to-raise-some-cashflow moment. biggrin.gif
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I've been very indecisive about the screen size and gain, probably because I'm used to knowing more about things and I still know relatively little about projectors.

Hold off on the screen if you're not sure. As long as you've done your projector math so that it will be able to accommodate the two or three potential sizes from its mounting location (which shouldn't be an issue as long as you're not at the PJ's extremes for zoom, etc.), wait until you have the projector. Set it up, even temporarily, and project onto the blank wall (if you haven't painted yet), or onto white photographer's backdrop paper (big roll is $20). Then you can test two or three sizes and see which one works. The image off of the backdrop paper is quite good, so watching a few movies on it won't be a burden, even...

I did that to make sure I had chosen correctly - I was concerned the size I really wanted was going to be too big for the front row. Testing it alleviated those concerns...

Jeff


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