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post #31 of 1236 Old 01-18-2011, 07:37 AM
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Just subscribed. Two of my favorite things, Homebrew and Home Theaters.

Are you planning on putting a couple taps in your bar area?

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Is it solipsistic in here, or is it just me?
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post #32 of 1236 Old 01-18-2011, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BllDo View Post

Just subscribed. Two of my favorite things, Homebrew and Home Theaters.

Are you planning on putting a couple taps in your bar area?

Thanks for checking out my thread. If everything goes as planned, I will put a beverage air (or equivalent) keg fridge under the bar to store my kegs. I currently have 7 cornelius kegs on tap in a modified freezer/cooler. Each keg holds 5 gallons of beer. I am hoping to have a minimum of 6 on tap at the new bar.

I took a break from the basement last night to finally get around to bottling my annual Super Bowl beer. The name is yet to be revealed following next weekend's games. It will be great when we can have our annual Super Bowl party in the basement. Then I will have multiple beers on tap.
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post #33 of 1236 Old 01-19-2011, 12:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Had a chance to work on the basement for a short while today. Once of the issues I have been working on is the HVAC outlets in the ceiling of the theater area. The issue is that the ceiling joists in this part of the basement are 12" OC. This causes a 10 inch vent to be wedged between the joists. My concern is that with such a tight fit, sound may be able to resonate up through the joists.



While at Home Depot this morning, I found a perimeter vent that has the outlet turned in the opposite direction so that it will fit between the joists with space on both sides.



These vents are also 2 inches longer (4x12 instead of 4x10), so I am hoping that the extra space will make the air exiting the vent slightly quieter.



Now I just need to figure out the best way to mount the actual vent to hold it in place. Should I just leave it unattached and mount it directly to the drywall, or is it OK to make a bracket that attaches it to the joists?

Also picked up a 5" can light so that I can build a prototype for the sealed lighting boxes. I couldn't remember which type others had used, so I picked up an old work can, and then realized that the threads I found used a new work light. Oh well, I'm sure there will be many more trips to HD. I'm going to need to modify the plans I found because of the closer joist spacing, but I have a couple of ideas.
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post #34 of 1236 Old 01-21-2011, 06:07 PM - Thread Starter
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The case of acoustic caulk came in to the local hardware store yesterday and I picked it up last night with no problems. The free "deliver to store" option was a huge money saver. Unfortunately, 4 of the 12 tubes had some damage at the top of the tube. I am guessing that there is no liner within the tube, so the caulk will dry out. I guess I will need to return the 4 tubes to the store and then order 4 new tubes from the site (the acoustic caulk is not carried in the store).

A bit of a pain to have to run back and forth a couple of extra times, but the price was much better than paying for shipping. The store is only 5 minutes away, so not a huge deal.





I also received my fabric samples from GOM. It is early in the process, but I wanted to find out what the fabrics looked like so I could decide if I wanted to head down that path.

My plan this weekend is to finish up some of the duct work. I also need to clean up the last few things in the basement before framing out the last of the walls. I probably won't get into any major pieces of the project until after my annual Super Bowl party, but I will continue to pick away at some of the smaller items.
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post #35 of 1236 Old 01-22-2011, 05:27 AM
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I bought 2 full rolls when I did my HT, and have quite a bit left on the second roll. Not sure how much -- maybe 2/3 of a roll? Just throwing it out as an option, if you don't have a local source, or don't need a full roll.
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post #36 of 1236 Old 01-22-2011, 06:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi Geordon,

Thanks for the offer. I am in Clarkston, about 1 1/2 hours from Mason. I sent you a PM.

Nick
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post #37 of 1236 Old 01-22-2011, 03:44 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, I posted another thread here to open up my soundproofing discussion to a broader audience. After some serious thought, I am starting to think I am heading down the wrong path. While I haven't ruled out my current design completely, I am thinking that there may be many advantages to a more traditional dedicated theater room. Here is a drawing I quickly put together showing what I am considering:



Here are some of my thoughts around this change:

  1. This will be a much smaller area to treat acoustically. I can still use several sound containment methods in other areas of the basement, but I wouldn't have to worry about acoustic treatments throughout the larger area. This will save money and provide better results.
  2. This change will mean that I don't need to remove a lolly column and add two more to open up the view. This simplifies the work along this wall.
  3. Having the games in the theater is probably bad from an acoustic point of view. That ads lots of glass and wood surfaces. Even if I were to treat the room based on my current games, that could change down the road.
  4. It will improve the seating situation. My old design only had three theater seats and 4 bar stools. This design may allow me to put up to eight theater seats. I will need to do some measuring to determine if this will work. In the end this will be much more comfortable.
  5. This option improves my lighting options since I won't need as much lighting. I won't be as concerned about cutting holes in the ceiling for a bunch of cans since the ceilings are probably too low for soffets. I may be able to use sconses and a couple of small cans with sealed boxes behind them.
  6. One of my thoughts with the open theater design I was originally looking at was that I occasionally have lots of people over to watch sports. This would allow everyone to enjoy the screen from anywhere in the basement. The more I thought about this, I decided I didn't want to sacrifice movie quality for occasional TV viewing. In addition, I will still have multiple TVs in the other areas, so I could always leave the theater door open for sports viewing since acoustics are not as important for casual TV viewing. This would allow people to move between rooms and enjoy the game throughout the basement.
  7. Being able to close off the theater when there are a lot of kids over playing games is a huge stress reliever .
Some of my concerns with this new design are:

  1. I don't know if there is the proper height in the room for a riser. I only have 7'5" of unfinished space, which means I will probably lose a couple of inches after it is finished.
  2. If I do put in a riser, how will that impact my projector mounting? Will there be enough headroom?
  3. I don't know what I am going to do about my equipment closet. I have no idea where I will move it to. I already have all of the wiring in this corner which will be an issue that I need to deal with.
  4. I will potentially lose room for one or two games due to layout changes.
  5. My wife is concerned that it will feel like a cave with the low ceiling in the theater area. The other areas of the basement will have just over 8' when finished.
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post #38 of 1236 Old 01-22-2011, 04:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NGiovas View Post


Now I just need to figure out the best way to mount the actual vent to hold it in place. Should I just leave it unattached and mount it directly to the drywall, or is it OK to make a bracket that attaches it to the joists?

What I did was to screw a wood block to either end of the end boot that sits back about 1".

After the drywall is up, cut the hole where you want it, then fish the boot down into the hole.

When you secure the register, the screws will go through the drywall into the wood blocks.

I would secure this way (rather than securing the boot to the joists) if you are using RSIC so you are not coupling the drywall-->boot-->framing
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post #39 of 1236 Old 01-22-2011, 04:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the suggestion. That sounds like a great idea.

Nick
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post #40 of 1236 Old 01-22-2011, 08:51 PM - Thread Starter
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I had a great conversation this afternoon with Shawn and later tonight with Shawn and Dennis. Shawn had contacted me after seeing my posts about sound proofing my theater. One of the big concerns that came out of our conversation is the ceiling height in the theater area. I need to take an exact measurement, but it looks like I will be around 7'3" finished height.

I need to check into local building codes on ceiling heights for finished areas, but assuming this height is OK, what are people's opinion on having a second row riser with a lower ceiling height? I know it is obviously not ideal, but it would be nice to have the second row of seats if it doesn't greatly compromise my theater design. Keep in mind that most of the time there will not be more than 4 of us in the theater, but occasionally there will be a few more.

My thought was to compromise the riser height by a couple of inches - keeping it around 9"-10". This would mean that a fairly tall person could stand on the riser without hitting their head. I would also have to do some math on the projector to see how far back I can mount it to see if it will be out of the way. That may be an issue also.

Just looking for opinions before I rule out the second row with riser.
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post #41 of 1236 Old 01-22-2011, 09:32 PM
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You could build your riser with the portion that people walk on (not sit on) some number of inches (2-4 roughly) lower than where they will sit. You would build a "mini-riser" on top of the main riser where your seating is, to bring that area up to where it needs to be to see over the front row.

Here's a pic of mine for a visual. The mini riser is about 2"/

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post #42 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 03:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks fotto,

How high is your riser at the various points (steps, lower part and overall)?
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post #43 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 04:03 AM
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Looks like 7'-0" is your minimum ceiling height:

Michigan Building Code

Check with your local building department, but I believe enforcement is mandatory in MI.
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post #44 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 04:20 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks Tim. I have dealt with my local township multiple times regarding code questions during other projects, so I know that they follow the national codes without any modifications. I am guessing that the Ohio code you referenced is following the national code at a minimum and if anything is stricter.

With that said, it may depend on the definition of "habitable" space. I believe that would be any living space (including a theater, family room, etc). If so, the minimum is 7'. Otherwise, 6'8". In either case, I would be a few inches above the minimum which is good news. I will be calling tomorrow to find out what the code is to make sure.

Assuming that my ceiling height will pass code, I still have to consider riser height, projector placement and screen size (including distance from floor and ceiling). Lots of open questions to answer, but still making some progress.

I played with the drawings for quite a while last night trying to look for an alternative that would allow me to put a theater (even a small one) in the portion of the basement with the higher ceiling and then put my games in the lower portion. Every one of these options required a greater compromise for one reason or another. The greatest reason being that I would need to go through the theater to access the storage area or the workshop. This would mean that I would be dragging games, boxes, etc. through the theater regularly and I don't like this option. Also, if someone needed to access one of those areas while you were watching a movie, they would be required to interrupt. I think the lower ceiling height may be a better compromise - especially if I can fit a second row of seats.
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post #45 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 04:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NGiovas View Post

Thanks fotto,

How high is your riser at the various points (steps, lower part and overall)?

I built main riser (including underneath mini riser) with 2x10 and one sheet 3/4 ply which equals 9 1/2" + 3/4" or 10 1/2". Riser was made with 2x4 (on their sides) and one sheet 3/4 ply or 1 1/2 + 3/4 or 2 1/4. Overall then with mini riser equals 12 3/4". The steps are 2x4 on edge with either 1/2 or 3/4 ply (don't remember) on top.

On the walking part, I have around 6' 8" to the ceiling. You can always shorten the main riser height and lengthen the mini riser height if that works out better for you. I wouldn't go more than 3-4 inches for on the mini riser for people's comfort and ease of sitting in the chair unless you extend the mini-riser out in front of the chairs to create a step (such as what Cathan did).
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post #46 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 04:33 AM
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The theater would definitely be habitable space. You could use the reduced ceiling height in a storage room or electronics closet.. ie a space that is not used for living, eating, sleeping or cooking could be 6'-8".


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post #47 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 05:12 AM - Thread Starter
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A small update. I had emailed my friend who helped me do some of my framing to ask him his opinion on having a lower ceiling height in the theater. He replied reminding me that when I did the sketches I didn't know how much ceiling height I would lose with isolation clips, hat channel and 2 layers of drywall. In addition, there was a gas pipe that I assumed I wouldn't relocate (which I am going to move), so I had estimated a worst case finished ceiling height in the sketches (hand slaps forehead). I ran downstairs to remeasure the ACTUAL unfinished height - 92" (7'8") - OOPS. Knowing a little bit more now, I think I may be able to slightly recess the clips between the joists so that the hat channel hangs just below the joists without touching. This combined with DD & GG, I am wondering if I could get a finished height of 7'6" (lose 2"). Any thoughts?

I know this isn't a huge gain, but every little bit helps.
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post #48 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 05:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NGiovas View Post

A small update. I had emailed my friend who helped me do some of my framing to ask him his opinion on having a lower ceiling height in the theater. He replied reminding me that when I did the sketches I didn't know how much ceiling height I would lose with isolation clips, hat channel and 2 layers of drywall. In addition, there was a gas pipe that I assumed I wouldn't relocate (which I am going to move), so I had estimated a worst case finished ceiling height in the sketches (hand slaps forehead). I ran downstairs to remeasure the ACTUAL unfinished height - 92" (7'8") - OOPS. Knowing a little bit more now, I think I may be able to slightly recess the clips between the joists so that the hat channel hangs just below the joists without touching. This combined with DD & GG, I am wondering if I could get a finished height of 7'6" (lose 2"). Any thoughts?

I know this isn't a huge gain, but every little bit helps.

In my current setup (drywall hung Friday) my unfinished height was 91" and I only am using 1 layer of 5/8" rock so I am just under 90 1/2" I am sure this will be no problem since my other room I have drop ceilings somewhere around 84" and am ok.

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post #49 of 1236 Old 01-23-2011, 06:14 AM - Thread Starter
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While searching the forums, I found a picture that depicts what I was thinking about for the ceiling in the theater area. This is not my diagram (I believe it is one of Ted White's drawings). Based on this, it looks like losing 2" is a realistic number.


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post #50 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 05:16 AM - Thread Starter
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Took a break yesterday afternoon to watch some football, but my mind kept going back to the revised layout. I have some math to do so that I can determine potential screen size, projector location and riser size and location. I don't need to finalize these things right now, but I am just trying to determine if this layout is going to work before I do much more work.

A couple of other decisions that need to be made if I go with this layout:
  1. Should I put the door at the front (by the screen) or the rear of the theater? I like the idea of putting it in the rear, but depending on the size of the riser, it may or may not work. I don't want people to have to step up as they enter the room. Putting it in the rear also allows for a better game layout in the game area.
  2. Where should I locate the equipment closet? I am trying to determine how much effort it will be to relocate the wiring that has already been run to the corner of the theater space. If it improves my design, I don't mind doing the work. I am just not sure where I would put it.
    1. If I remotely locate the equipment, where would I locate a video game console? Most require the console to be in the vacinity of the screen so that the controllers can work.
    2. I am concerned that it will be a hassle to load movies, etc. if the equipment is not in the theater.
  3. Should I relocate the electric sub panel that is already in the corner of the theater? I had intended to use it to isolate everything in the theater. If I move the equipment, I won't have the same power requirements directly in the room.
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post #51 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 07:22 AM
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I hate to be a party pooper, but felt the need to point out that sound entering those ceiling vents will simply pass through the flex and into the joists and subfloor. The duct has no mass to stop this.

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post #52 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 07:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Ted, I appreciate the feedback. The ducts are wrapped in R8 usulation and I planned to fill the joist cavity around the ducts with fluffy insulation. I assumed this would be similar to builidng a muffler.
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post #53 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 07:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NGiovas View Post

An interesting sidebar:

My younger son (11 years old) and I were together working in the basement today. Since he was asking a lot of questions about what the theater will look like and how big will the screen be, I decided to take him on a little field trip. We stopped by the local Theater Xtreme store to take a look around. This would allow him to get an idea of what the theaters are like and it would allow me to talk with a local vendor to see what products they sell. I prefer to support local sellers when possible.

We spent about an hour their discussing theaters, equipment and layouts. My son was blown away by the size of the screens. The largest TV we have had was a rear projection 65" which has since been replaced by a 52" LCD (knowing that we wanted to build a theater with a larger screen). Needless to say, he really enjoyed watching clips of movies on the various screens and he is more anxious than ever to help me out with the build.

Unfortunately, I wasn't as excited about my visit when I left. The owner of the store was the person who helped us out during our visit. I am not an expert on home theaters by any means, but I just wasn't comfortable with some of the info he was throwing at me. I thought I would post some things here to get some feedback. Maybe I am wrong and this guy really is guiding me down the right path and isn't just pushing me to buy what he sells.

  1. He stated that 80% of all projectors sold are Epson and that number is growing annually. He said that they are so far ahead of the competition that I shouldn't even consider another brand. I noticed that he only sells Epson, so I suspect this number may have been inflated a bit. I know there are a lot of happy Epson owners here, but that number seems high.
  2. He stated at the last CEDIA show all of the major manufacturers were preparing to launch their new projectors. Epson was the first to present. When they were done, the other vendors were so blown away by the new Epsons, they all canceled their launch with the exception of JVC.
  3. I asked about 2.35:1 screens since he didn't have any on display. He said that this format is dead and that the only person who still uses it is James Cameron, so don't even waste my money.
  4. I also noticed that their screens and chairs appeared to be their own brand (I could be wrong). He also claimed that their screens are made by the same manufacturer that makes all IMAX screens. I wasn't sure about this either.
Obviously I didn't have a great experience. The intent of my post isn't to completely bash the owner of this store, but I find it disheartening when you really want to support a local store, but come out feeling like they aren't helping you make decisions that are in your best interest. Again, maybe I am just not very knowledgeable and he was correct in everything he stated. I just felt like he was really wanting to sell a big ticket theater and didn't care about my goals.

Epson makes solid projectors, but by no means should you limit yourself to just that company. JVC, Mitshubishi, Sony, Panasonic, etc all have very solid projectors that can compete. I recommend going to sites like projectorreviews.com or projectorcentral.com. Lots of choices.

You also need to decide if you want LCOS, LCD, or DLP. There are differences and pluses and minuses for all these projector types. LCD will usually offer the most flexible placement options and bulb life typically lasts longer. Many people feel that DLP gives off a better picture than LCD, but DLP will be less flexible for placement and some people suffer from rainbow effect with DLP. LCOS projectors are great and you should definitely have them on the list budget allowing.

As for 16:9 vs 2.35:1 this is going to be a preference thing. The Panasonic projectors will do zooming allowing you to do this on the cheap for 2.35:1 but you will need to make a decision on this, and how much you want to invest.

As for screens, there are tons of options. But we would need to know your budget before you buy a screen. It does not make sense to spend $2K or less on a projector and then drop $1K+ on a screen. There are some great budget screens out there for under $500 that will get the job done. You also need to figure out if you want an acoustically transparent screen or not. That will affect your budget.
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post #54 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 07:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NGiovas View Post

Ted, I appreciate the feedback. The ducts are wrapped in R8 usulation and I planned to fill the joist cavity around the ducts with fluffy insulation. I assumed this would be similar to builidng a muffler.

The muffler consists of two components:

The absorption you have already planned for

The large damped mass that is double drywall to contain the sound within the muffler, forcing it to pass through all that insulation. You would have to line the joist cavity with drywall to get the mass.

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post #55 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 07:57 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted White View Post

The muffler consists of two components:

The absorption you have already planned for

The large damped mass that is double drywall to contain the sound within the muffler, forcing it to pass through all that insulation. You would have to line the joist cavity with drywall to get the mass.

Ted,

So if I line the cavity with drywall, essentiall forming a sealed box around the insualtion and ductwork, will that do the trick? Do I need double drywall? If it is one layer of drywall against the joists, should I put a layer of green glue between the drywall and joist?

Thanks again for the help.
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post #56 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 09:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post
Epson makes solid projectors, but by no means should you limit yourself to just that company. JVC, Mitshubishi, Sony, Panasonic, etc all have very solid projectors that can compete. I recommend going to sites like projectorreviews.com or projectorcentral.com. Lots of choices.

You also need to decide if you want LCOS, LCD, or DLP. There are differences and pluses and minuses for all these projector types. LCD will usually offer the most flexible placement options and bulb life typically lasts longer. Many people feel that DLP gives off a better picture than LCD, but DLP will be less flexible for placement and some people suffer from rainbow effect with DLP. LCOS projectors are great and you should definitely have them on the list budget allowing.

As for 16:9 vs 2.35:1 this is going to be a preference thing. The Panasonic projectors will do zooming allowing you to do this on the cheap for 2.35:1 but you will need to make a decision on this, and how much you want to invest.

As for screens, there are tons of options. But we would need to know your budget before you buy a screen. It does not make sense to spend $2K or less on a projector and then drop $1K+ on a screen. There are some great budget screens out there for under $500 that will get the job done. You also need to figure out if you want an acoustically transparent screen or not. That will affect your budget.
ack_bk,

Thanks for all of the information. There is so much information to digest when building a new theater that it is overwhelming. For now I am going to focus my efforts on building out the room. Once I get further along inthe process, I will start to consider some of these other decisions. Who knows, by then there may be completely different equipment available anyway.
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post #57 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 10:00 AM
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Ted,

So if I line the cavity with drywall, essentiall forming a sealed box around the insualtion and ductwork, will that do the trick? Do I need double drywall? If it is one layer of drywall against the joists, should I put a layer of green glue between the drywall and joist?

Thanks again for the help.
Nick I would try and add double layers of 5/8" drywall to the underside of the subfloor, the sides of the two joists, as well as the bottom of the joist bay (you need a bottom to your box). Damping will be necessary, as all of this resonant, conductive mass is in direct contact with the house framing

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post #58 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by NGiovas View Post
ack_bk,

Thanks for all of the information. There is so much information to digest when building a new theater that it is overwhelming. For now I am going to focus my efforts on building out the room. Once I get further along inthe process, I will start to consider some of these other decisions. Who knows, by then there may be completely different equipment available anyway.
No problem, and I agree. Equipment should be the last thing you buy unless you stumble across a sale that is too good to be true (in which case it probably is). It is amazing how much we have seen projectors improve and drop in price. I would buy that last.
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post #59 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 10:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Nick I would try and add double layers of 5/8" drywall to the underside of the subfloor, the sides of the two joists, as well as the bottom of the joist bay (you need a bottom to your box). Damping will be necessary, as all of this resonant, conductive mass is in direct contact with the house framing
Thanks Ted. I will give that a try. I will build each layer of the box and caulk the seams before adding the next layer. I will enclose the ducts on all four sides with DD & GG. Hopefully that will do the trick.
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post #60 of 1236 Old 01-24-2011, 10:50 AM
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You could build your riser with the portion that people walk on (not sit on) some number of inches (2-4 roughly) lower than where they will sit. You would build a "mini-riser" on top of the main riser where your seating is, to bring that area up to where it needs to be to see over the front row.

Here's a pic of mine for a visual. The mini riser is about 2"/

I did a 4" mini riser and no issues accessing the chairs. Nice way to keep your standing clearance as high as possible and get your 2nd row up.

Very nice space you have to work with so take your time and look at it from all angles.

BTW, I am in the Northwest and Micro brews and Home brewing is big here. A buddy of mine does a Marzenfest every spring with a bunch of home brews - including the Marzen beer. Yummy!

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