When I purchased this house about 5 yeas ago one of the things I wanted was a home theatre. A basement seems like the perfect place for a HT but I'm in Arizona where basements are extremely rare. Then there are the builders putting up track homes who aren't too keen on customizations. Finally I fairly quickly discovered that doing this "right" like so many of you obviously have would cost far more than I could afford. So in the end I got what I'll just call a movie room instead of a home theatre. It's basicly a large bedroom with no closet and unfortunately a very big window.
I put one of those blackout shades on the window, moved in my old 65" 300lb rear projectection set (that was fun getting it up the stairs by the way)
, couch, chairs receiver and DVD player. I had the room wired for surround sound (5.1) so I hooked everything up and while I still wanted something better the room worked well for me up until about a year ago.
I should note here that this room is/was strictly for watching movies. Watching TV, Xbox, etc is always done in the family room.
So what happened to make me stop using the room? Really simple - I purchased a new 67" 1080p DLP for the family room. While I never wanted to watch movies in the family room (I didn't even have a DVD player there) I found that I no longer wanted to watch movies on the smaller lower resolution screen in the movie room and eventually started using the set in the family room exclusively. With the new 1080p set I also upgraded to blu-ray and now I've ripped all my DVD's and Blu-ray discs onto a 28TB server and use a popcorn hour A200 with YAMJ and a modified AEon skin to watch them.
I'd like to get back into the movie room but in order for that to happen there will need to be a few upgrades. I have some ideas on what I want to do but I'd also love to hear some suggestions too. The one thing I should get out of the way is that the room is already finished and mostly due to budget it's highly unlikely any demo will be done. For the most part the walls cieling and floors will need to stay the way they are. I should also point out that I can barely hammer a nail so nearly anything that would need to be done would need to be hired out.
Anyways... some pics of the room now
Note that the top of that cabinet is cut around the door jam making any changes to the room entry that much more troublesome.
Normally this one door is cloased as there is a chair right on the other side of it.
The cieling is 9' and the bottom of the light on that fan is 16" from the cieling. The room was never planned with extra HVAC in mind so with 3 people and 6 dogs (yes 6 dogs)
the fan is really a necessity. I'm actually a bit worried that a projector mounted on the ceiling will block the air flow generated by the fan to my primary seating area .
Here is the view from the main seating area.
The one door behind that chair is always closed. It was only opened for these photos.
When watching a movie this other door may or may not be closed. It usually depends on how hot the room gets and how much light it lets in. At night, when most my movie watching is done, the amount of light it lets in is minimal so I just leave it open.
Finally, here is that wonderful window.
And now some visio drawings (Sorry, I have no idea how to use google Sketchup)
First the overall room.
And then the screen wall.
I've been looking through all the HT photos people have posted I found many that I really like; however only a few that are also somewhat realistic for me.http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=982083http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1255339http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...php?p=14012849
I tend to really like that 2:35 screen and since the room will only be used for movies this aspect ratio seems to make the most sense to me. Right now I'm leaning towards the 136" BW Carada Criterion 2.35:1. The CIH masking system they have would be nice but there is no way that's in the budget. I am waivering a bit on the size though and am wondering if 136" may be too big.
For the projector I like the Panasonic PT-AE4000U especially with the extra lamp and warranty. Using the calculator at projector people it would appear that with a 14'6" throw I would need to use a 1.97x zoom which is nearly this projectors maximum. I'm left wondering if this presents any problems? When viewing movies with smaller ratios I would simply have black bars on the sides of the screen, right?
In the family room I have an Onkyo TX-SR606 that I've been happy with so I figure the newer model Onkyo TX-SR608 should be fine for the movie room. The only other piece of equipment I plan to put in there is the Popcorn Hour A200 which is currently in the family room. I still have not decided where to put this equipment but the rack show in that second link above is my current favorite. As for the speakers I currently have no plans to chage them. Perhaps a few months down the line I will look into replacing them.
Seating will likely stay the same however every once in a while I do check out what HT seating they have over at The Dump and perhaps one day I will find a good deal there and have to jump on it. Ideally I'd like to get a 3 seat Berkline, or similar, setup for the back wall but that might get a bit tight depending on the model.
I'm thinking a paint job similar to that in the first link above would be good. Black screen wall, cieling ad trim with slightly darker tan/brown walls than I have now.
The last area is one I know nothing about - acoustical treatments. I'm fairly sure I'll want to put a covering over that entire window but after that I really have no idea what else might be needed.