My New Home Theater 2.0, Staggered Wall HT. - AVS Forum
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Old 07-11-2011, 09:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Update as it goes....

The article about this HT on Electronic House

Before:





After:

















Room size:
20' x 15' x 9' give or take a few inches.
Riser height is 12", depth is 7' from the back wall.

Color:
GOM FR701 Black on the screen wall
GOM Anchorage Birch on the stagger panels
GOM Anchorage Fossil on the surrounding panels

Acoustic Treatment:
Front wall -- Linacoustic on top & bottom of the screen.
Side walls -- floor to ceiling Linacoustic on both side approx. the area between the front speakers to the side of front row.
Back wall -- Auralex Q'Fusor diffusor panels on the top 2 rows of the panels. 2" OC703 in the bottom row of the panels with 2" air-gap.


Audio:
Currently running 9.2 setup
Definitive Technology:
2x BP7001SC mains,
CLR3000 center,
4x BPX surrounds,
2x Di6.5S height channels.
2x SVS PB12-Plus DSP
Denon 4520 (only powering the height channels)
Emotiva XPA-2 (for the mains)
Emotiva XPA-5 (for the center & surrounds)

Video:
JVC RS4810
Darbee Vision
Seymour Screen Excellent 2.35:1 138" diagonal screen

Equipment Lists:
OPPO 93 player
DirecTV box
Sonos Connect
Wii
Xbox360
Popcorn Hour A300 streamer
10TB WHS v1 (soon will be replaced with a DS1812+ NAS box)
Middle Atlantic Slim5 5-37U rack with custom RSH faceplates
Ikea bookcase (for disc storage)
Insteon (lighting control)
Harmony 900 remote

Seats:
8 Palliser HiFi in Phoenix fabric, Chocalate color.
Configuration as
lOlOOlOl 1st row (12.5' from the screen)
lOlOlOlO| 2nd row (15" from the back wall)

Outside the HT entry:
2 LED movie poster frame with motion sensor control via Insteon





~~ Originally post ~~


Ok, I've been away from the forum a bit the past couple of years.... Mainly because I'm enjoying my little HT! Yeah, it's hard to believe it's been almost 3 1/2 years since my build! And needless to say, we've been enjoying it every single movie, and it even earn me a spot in the Electronic House's DIY showcase too.



Now, fast forward to present, my back then GF is now my official boss aka wife! And our family is growing too (expecting our first baby this Dec.)! So, we are buying a bigger house to accommodate our growing family. And that means, YES, I get to build a new HT soon!!



It's a new build, current projected finish date is in next Feb/Mar time frame (sooooo, this thread won't be update as often in the near future). The builder give me 8 weeks time to fully finalize everything/options. I still have about 5 weeks left to tell them what I want to do for my HT.



From what I've learn from my first HT, here's the improvement that I want:

- seat at least 8 people

- an equipment rack

- acoustic treatment (for both audio & noise)



Now, here's the floor plan of the basement:









and here's what I have come up with for my new HT:







What do you think?



The room size will be 20'x15'x9'. I'm think to have a 7-8' deep riser for the 2nd row, so the 1st row will sit about 12'-13' away. I want more space in between the screen & the 1st row so the family have more room when playing games for like Wii/Kinect/etc. And I'm thinking to have a 110-120" screen in the near future too. And probably a 3D projector IF/WHEN they make a good one and more good Avatar-like 3D movie instead of some "in-your-face" so called 3D movies! And with the 3D & lumen output in mind, I'm thinking to put the projector probably 12-14' from the screen to have as much lumen as possible from the projector and enough distance for a 120" projected image.



I'll be re-using the majority of my current equipments, at least that's what I told my wife. But will sure upgrading them down the road when money isn't as tight as buying a house & having a baby soon....



And I'm waiting for the quote from the builder about putting up double layer of drywall and if it's ok for me to supply them GG to apply in between the layers. I don't have a sensitive family, and almost 100% of the time when I'm watching a movie in the HT, my wife will be with me too. So, I don't need/care a 100% sound proofed HT. But do want an improvement especially since I'm giving the chances to do it on a new build.



I'll also meeting their wiring contractor to discuss about the speaker wires in the HT (7.1), living room(5.1), and probably in our bedroom. Cat6 to every single room/kitchen/garage for networking (mainly streaming movies/videos to HTPCs) & future home automation (still hoping a Harmony could do what I want to do, if not, then I probably will dip into Control4).



I've already told them to add a dedicated 20amp circuit to both the HT and the garage.



I think I'll only have 3' of depth in the equipment room. I think the MA Slim5 is about 20" depth right? So, do you think 36" depth will be ok?



Anything else that I should tell the builder, or I should look out? 'Cos this is our first new build house, I really have no idea what/where should we pay attention to. And the above plan is as future proof as I could think of.....

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Old 07-11-2011, 09:32 PM
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First, congratulations on your purchase, and on your expanding family!

Second, and generally, I'd recommend you draw out (and post) as may variations as you can devise, so that all the uses for your space can be considered.

Third, and mostly because it's one of things that comes up and I don't know much about it technically, is HVAC. Ten people can really pump out the heat and warm up a room. Granted, you save some heat by removing most of the electronics, but it's definitely one of those things that you and the builder need to be on the same page about. (and incidentally, I wouldn't expect that he has any idea how to properly manage either the HVAC design or the soundproofing.)

There's lots of great opportunity here. Here's to making the most of it!

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Old 07-12-2011, 08:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh, yes. I forgot to mention about HVAC. Yes, I'll have the builder to put probably at least 4 ceiling outlets to help cool the room. I already know how hot a HT could get, even with my current small HT!
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Old 07-12-2011, 09:02 AM
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Hi Landshark -

First, congratulations on the wife, the baby on the way and the new house...all great things.

Second, a few thoughts...

1 - Have you thought about a false wall to hide your speakers? I know you want distance between the screen and first row for Kinect etc., but that floorspace would be occupied by the speakers anyway, so maybe moving the screen wall in front of the speakers is something you'd want to consider. I personally think that the false wall makes a huge upgrade in the visual presentation of the room.

2 - The equipment rack. If you decide to go with a false wall, that position won't work because everything will be behind it. Even if you don't go with the false wall, you may still have trouble with that position because you'll likely need to navigate around the front left speaker in order to get to your rack. You'll also have equipment lights up near the screen and that may be distracting to some viewers. Soooo...maybe you want to consider a pull-out rack that is completely outside the theater. You could keep it in the same spot it's in now, but rotate it 90 degrees to the right, lose the door and have it face out into the remainder of the basement.

3 - Front row seats. Those seem a little wide to me. If you want to center them in the room, you'll have less than 2 feet on each side for an aisle and you'll have a chair within 2 feet of the door. Maybe consider just having 4 seats in the front row? Or maybe move the door closer to the screen wall to make a little more space to enter the room? Maybe both?

4 - Disclaimer. I have no experience whatsoever in designing theaters etc. These are just the thoughts that pop into my head as I look at your layout above - feel free to completely disregard all of them or tell me that they're stupid.

5 - Most importantly, good luck and have fun with all of the new endeavors you have going!

The Esquire Theater Construction Thread:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1289590
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Old 07-12-2011, 11:32 AM - Thread Starter
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I originally thought about a false wall. However, as you've stated regarding to rack location, I gave up on the idea. To me, it just doesn't make sense to have to go outside the room to pop in the disc or tweak. Plus if I rotate the rack 90 degrees, then I'll have no access to the back of the rack unless I invest on a more expensive pull & rotate rack, and I will probably have cooling issue too.

The seats still haven't finalized. I might reduce the number of the chairs too. I intend to put the french door on the side of the first row so I could avoid the door being at/near the first reflection point so I could put an acoustic panel there. But I might reduce the first row to just 2 loveseats instead though....
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Old 07-12-2011, 11:52 AM
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Version 2.0, sweet!! Loved your first theater landshark1 (I might have "borrowed" some ideas for my own theater from yours), so I'm expecting this one to be even better.

Couple of important points:

- Even though you mentioned HVAC pumping cool air into the room, you never mentioned anything about pulling warm air out. You'll want at least 2 large return ducts in the back of the theater. You might also think about an exhaust vent by your projector location to pull heat from the projector into an adjacent room. A dedicated zone on your AC for the theater would also be a great idea since you're starting from scratch here.

- As far as soundproofing goes, the french doors are going to be an area of concern. I'd hate to see you do DD+GG and not get the best performance from it because of your wide entry.

- I wouldn't completely count out a false wall and AT screen. With a little experimentation, you can have an AT screen, and still keep your gear in the same room for ease of access, you'd just need to plan a different location for the rack (not in front). If you flipped your theater 180 degrees, you could have a false wall and AT screen at the top, and your rack in the back corner (preferable).

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Old 07-12-2011, 12:27 PM
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Gary, finally all that work that kept you from coming to the NoVA Home Theater Builders Group meetings is paying off with a nice new house! If you want to flip the room as suggested you may want to take another look At BritinVA's build as a strategy for building a theater looking front without sacrificing viewing distance. I also echo the concern about trying to fit 5 across seating in that space.

One thing to worry about is how the HVAC/Plumbers might screw up your great looking space. Low hanging drain pipes, Vertical drain pipes, Sump pumps and Ductwork can wreck havoc with a good space.
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Old 07-12-2011, 02:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HDvids4all View Post

Version 2.0, sweet!! Loved your first theater landshark1 (I might have "borrowed" some ideas for my own theater from yours), so I'm expecting this one to be even better.

Couple of important points:

- Even though you mentioned HVAC pumping cool air into the room, you never mentioned anything about pulling warm air out. You'll want at least 2 large return ducts in the back of the theater. You might also think about an exhaust vent by your projector location to pull heat from the projector into an adjacent room. A dedicated zone on your AC for the theater would also be a great idea since you're starting from scratch here.

- As far as soundproofing goes, the french doors are going to be an area of concern. I'd hate to see you do DD+GG and not get the best performance from it because of your wide entry.

- I wouldn't completely count out a false wall and AT screen. With a little experimentation, you can have an AT screen, and still keep your gear in the same room for ease of access, you'd just need to plan a different location for the rack (not in front). If you flipped your theater 180 degrees, you could have a false wall and AT screen at the top, and your rack in the back corner (preferable).

Subscribed!

Thank for the advice! Yeah, I think I should ask the builder to see if they could fit a return air duct somewhere in the room too!

The french door is wife's idea. She love french door and do want it there! I know, it's not the best, probably the worst, from the sound & acoustical point of view! But the boss has already made up the mind, I'll just have to follow.....

As of flipping the room, yeah, that's a possibility/idea. But at the current screen location, there's a soffit up on top. So, even with the 9' ceiling, with a 1' high riser, it will only leave 7' of the head room above the ceiling. I'm afraid it's might be too low.... But I'll certainly think twice about flipping it....

Quote:
Originally Posted by BIGmouthinDC View Post

Gary, finally all that work that kept you from coming to the NoVA Home Theater Builders Group meetings is paying off with a nice new house! If you want to flip the room as suggested you may want to take another look At BritinVA's build as a strategy for building a theater looking front without sacrificing viewing distance. I also echo the concern about trying to fit 5 across seating in that space.

One thing to worry about is how the HVAC/Plumbers might screw up your great looking space. Low hanging drain pipes, Vertical drain pipes, Sump pumps and Ductwork can wreck havoc with a good space.

Hi Jeff, yeah, someone has to work hard to be able to afford all these thing.... Plus I think I've lost my log in ever since you guys moved to the new site....

Yes, seating isn't set yet. But I'll take your expert advice and just use 2 loveseats in the front row. If I don't flip the current plan, I think I'm still ok for 5 seats at the back. But if I'm going to flip it, then definite max of 4 seats to leave room to access the rack...

So, I guess the REAL question now is keep the current orientation or flip it 180degrees??

Oh, I just found out I actually only have 2 weeks left to make the decision as the HT room is consider the structural deadline which is 7/24!! Oh man.....
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Old 07-12-2011, 03:08 PM
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Don't worry I think the login is stuck shut with cobwebs since there haven't been any real new theaters competed to go visit. You haven't missed anything.

On flipping the room, having the blinking lights at the back will be less of a distraction. Just a little tighter to access. You would need to make sure that things you want access to frequently are above seat back height.
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Old 07-14-2011, 11:46 AM
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Just a thought, but have you considered moving the right wall 3' to the right so it is against the wet bar and moving the equipment room to the opposite wall and to the right of the theater outside the main theater space as you have in this design so it doesn't take up seating space? This would give you a 20'x18' (Not sure if that is a bad dimension acoustically) theater so you could fit your 5 seats and would keep the equipment to the back of the theater.
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Old 07-15-2011, 01:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisInGA View Post

Just a thought, but have you considered moving the right wall 3' to the right so it is against the wet bar and moving the equipment room to the opposite wall and to the right of the theater outside the main theater space as you have in this design so it doesn't take up seating space? This would give you a 20'x18' (Not sure if that is a bad dimension acoustically) theater so you could fit your 5 seats and would keep the equipment to the back of the theater.

That was my original plan. That's until we figured out the rec room will be too small, and the opposite side of the equipment room is actually the mechanical room with concrete wall in between. So it's a no go.....

At the moment, I'm still leaning towards the current plan (wife somehow doesn't like it "flipped"), and with no AT screen. I don't want to make the room any smaller, and don't care if the front speakers are showing. Plus my wife don't want a "cinema feel" theater, she wants to keep the theater cozy & home like. Just like we did on our 1st theater.
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Old 07-19-2011, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok, still I'm still debating whether to flip or not to flip....

FLIPPED:
I know if flipped, equipment rack will be out of the sight, but there's a overhead "box" directly above the 2nd row, it's about 14" down from the ceiling, and 18" stick out from the (now) back wall. I'm afraid it doesn't have enough headroom for the 2nd row....

STILL W/ THE ORIGINAL:
My main concern will be that same overhead "box/stick out" which I'm afraid will limiting the screen size (ceiling height 9', box bump down about 14", the screen at least 3' above ground). Equipment in sight not really bothers me, but in this plan, the equipment location will be right next to the front speaker which might also risking bump into the front left speaker....

Any suggestion/advice base on my concern/problem.??

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Old 07-19-2011, 07:19 PM
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Congrats on all the new exciting things you have going! Be sure to talk with your builder so nothing gets in the way of a clean ceiling: plumbing, support beams, HVAC.

With the flipped design, you might not need to worry about the overhead "box". If the seats are close to the back wall, nobody's head will be within 18" of the wall at that height.

Are you going to have those windows removed from the HT before they're designed in?
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Old 07-19-2011, 07:46 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm leaning towards the "flip" floor plan at the moment. Need to decide it by this weekend.....

As for HVAC, I've asked the builder to put 4 air vents + 1 air return duct within the room.

There's a small window at the top left corner where the screen wall will be in the flip design. I was going to remove it; however, the wife disagree due to the future resale (no window in the room). So I'll have to find some way to cover that up....
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Old 07-22-2011, 12:10 PM - Thread Starter
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A quick question!

Is there any coding regarding how "wide" a step needs to be? I know the "depth" of a step needs to be a certain depth, so at least people could put their foot on it. But width??

I'm at the last final stage of designing the riser with my builder, and they want the steps to be 36" wide!! Which is way too wide IMHO!

Thanks in advance!!
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Old 08-12-2011, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok, I'm pretty much finished with the HT's basic design & wiring.



Now, my wiring guy just asked me a good question that I didn't think about it before.

In the rec. room, I'm going to put a TV on the wall & pre-wired for 5.1 sound as shown on the above drawing. Now, he asked me that where do I want to put the source for the rec. room TV so he could wire the HDMI accordingly? He suggested I also put the source for the rec. room TV on the same rack as for the HT too. But I'm afraid I might not have enough rack space for the rec. room tho? I think I'll need at least another DirecTV box, and a AVR, for the rec. room TV at the minimum, right?

I would like to keep that TV wall as clean as possible, so I don't want to put a media center underneath it (unless I couldn't think of any other solution). Where should I put the source for that TV at?? another rack under the wet bar? But then I might have cooling problem, right?
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Old 08-12-2011, 01:42 PM
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I will be following this thread closely since the dimensions for our proposed theater are almost exactly the same..... except we will have about 22 feet to play with and I only have 8ft ceilings....if your first theater is any indication of your work , I'm sure this version will be that much better

I'm be intersted on how you plan to deal with the noise from the furnace being that close. My steps end just about where yours do and I plan on moving the hot water heater to achieve a more rectangular room ....(why do builders always put the HVAC/water heater right in the middle of the basement instead of under the stairs..it takes up valuable space?)...

...anyway good luck with your build and I will probably be "borrowing" some ideas if you don't mind.

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Old 08-12-2011, 01:57 PM
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Could you just have a media cabinet on one of the side walls. Otherwise it seems the equipment room makes the most sense. What in-ceiling speakers are you looking at?
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Old 08-12-2011, 02:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Could you just have a media cabinet on one of the side walls. Otherwise it seems the equipment room makes the most sense. What in-ceiling speakers are you looking at?

Currently, I'm planning to have the rec room avr/driectv box/etc. in the mechanical room...... Thought about under the stair, but then I might have heat issue even tho it won't be housing a lot of equipment....

I'm thinking to use some DefTech in-ceiling speakers as I'm a DefTech fan (DefTech all the way in the HT too). But my installer carry Klipsch and he highly recommend them. They will only use for TV, so I'm not too picky about them....
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Old 08-12-2011, 03:00 PM
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Quote:


One thing to worry about is how the HVAC/Plumbers might screw up your great looking space. Low hanging drain pipes, Vertical drain pipes, Sump pumps and Ductwork can wreck havoc with a good space.

+1. This is likely to be quite a challenge. Getting the builder to understand what you need won't be enough. You should plan on speaking directly to the plumbing and HVAC subcontractors. If those conversations make you at all uneasy, arrange a 3-way meeting with the GC, the sub and you. Even then, you should plan on visiting the site as often as possible while this part of the work is being done. It's not at all uncommon for the "boss" to agree to a deviation from how things are normally done, only to have the agreement ignored by tradesmen who just want to do every job the same way as the last one.

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Old 08-12-2011, 03:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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+1. This is likely to be quite a challenge. Getting the builder to understand what you need won't be enough. You should plan on speaking directly to the plumbing and HVAC subcontractors. If those conversations make you at all uneasy, arrange a 3-way meeting with the GC, the sub and you. Even then, you should plan on visiting the site as often as possible while this part of the work is being done. It's not at all uncommon for the "boss" to agree to a deviation from how things are normally done, only to have the agreement ignored by tradesmen who just want to do every job the same way as the last one.

Thanks for the tips! Yeah, I've heard story how thing turn out differently in between the builder & the sub contractors..... I'll make note to myself to make sure keep my eye on it as much as possible.

Visiting the site isn't a problem as I currently live 5mins away from the new house. However, I thought (and warned from the sale ladies) that I'm not allow to be at (in/inside) the site area w/out any notice as it's a hard hat area & insurance issue.....

So, got any tips/advise as to how to have a better relationship between me & the people that actually "work" on my house? I've heard some people said an occasionally box of donuts help. But do I just drop them off? How do I know how's the person in charge there?
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Old 09-23-2011, 11:43 PM
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Hi landshark1,

Congrats on the soon the be new home purchase.

Any new updates as of now?

HT: PJ: ?? , Screen: ??,B&W 684s, 685s, HTM62 / DIY SI 18" / port tuned- 17hz
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Old 10-05-2011, 11:24 AM
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Originally Posted by dwightp View Post

+1. This is likely to be quite a challenge. Getting the builder to understand what you need won't be enough. You should plan on speaking directly to the plumbing and HVAC subcontractors. If those conversations make you at all uneasy, arrange a 3-way meeting with the GC, the sub and you. Even then, you should plan on visiting the site as often as possible while this part of the work is being done. It's not at all uncommon for the "boss" to agree to a deviation from how things are normally done, only to have the agreement ignored by tradesmen who just want to do every job the same way as the last one.

PLUS 1!! Can't agree more. I'm in the construction industry and I can't tell you how many times the sub just does it his way because that's "the way" he's been doing for 20 years, no matter how many times you show him what you want and he agrees. I suggest you show up on the day of installation and be sure you get what you want. Be nice, but be FIRM AND CLEAR about what you want and what the extra costs are if any. If they screw something up, make sure you blow it WAAAAY out of proportion, make it seem like it's the end of the world.

Hate to say it, but nothing like a couple F bombs to get your point across during a construction meeting
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Old 10-05-2011, 03:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ragged View Post

PLUS 1!! Can't agree more. I'm in the construction industry and I can't tell you how many times the sub just does it his way because that's "the way" he's been doing for 20 years, no matter how many times you show him what you want and he agrees. I suggest you show up on the day of installation and be sure you get what you want. Be nice, but be FIRM AND CLEAR about what you want and what the extra costs are if any. If they screw something up, make sure you blow it WAAAAY out of proportion, make it seem like it's the end of the world.

Hate to say it, but nothing like a couple F bombs to get your point across during a construction meeting

Thanks for the tips! I'll definitely keep that in mind!

Pre-construction meeting is set next Thursday, ground breaking the following Monday! Can't wait, can't wait.....
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Old 10-06-2011, 07:58 AM
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NP, once you make it clear that you're the the boss and you know what you want, it should go easier. Take some pics during construction too.
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:09 PM - Thread Starter
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The house building is in good progress. The builder just called me and asked to meet me tomorrow to confirm all my requirement and each location in the HT (HVAC, electrical, etc.).



Btw, I'm also researching some in-ceiling speakers for the master bedroom. If any of you have any suggestion, please let me know! Thanks! http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1374458
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Old 11-22-2011, 08:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Ok, I just came back from the new house. Had a meet with the electrician, and the HVAC guy to confirm the location of the outlets, switches, lights, and air vents.

I finally have some progress photos to show you!

Here's my equipment room where the rack gonna be. It will have a slot vent door on the outside, and the back is open to the adjacent mechanical room. So I don't think I'll have any heating issue. And it also has it's own 20AMP dedicated circuit.



Here's the riser. 7' deep, 12" high. Steps is 2' wide, 6" high on both side. It will have a electric outlet at the center facing the screen for the front row power recliner. The 2nd row will just plug to the back wall wall outlet.





Next week, gonna meet with the cable/speaker wiring guy to confirm the whole house cable & mark the speakers location. I just can't wait.....
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Old 11-22-2011, 09:09 AM
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Hey Gary, this must be pretty exciting seeing your theater grow from the ground up without having to do all of it yourself. Plus you have the benefit of knowledge from your previous theater, which was great too! Best of luck getting everything you want in it.

Dale
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Old 11-24-2011, 10:10 PM
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Congratulations for your wife, the house and most importantly the baby.

I cannot tell you how much I am inspired by your cozy home theater. It was great..... I am looking forward for the new build... I am sure I am gonna copy a lot of your ideas from it

Zammy
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Old 11-26-2011, 09:34 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dvmiller View Post

Hey Gary, this must be pretty exciting seeing your theater grow from the ground up without having to do all of it yourself. Plus you have the benefit of knowledge from your previous theater, which was great too! Best of luck getting everything you want in it.

Dale

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Originally Posted by zammykhan View Post

Congratulations for your wife, the house and most importantly the baby.

I cannot tell you how much I am inspired by your cozy home theater. It was great..... I am looking forward for the new build... I am sure I am gonna copy a lot of your ideas from it

Zammy

Thank you guys. Yeah, it's gonna be very busy for the next few months! Baby will be due is a bit over 2 weeks. Meeting the wiring guy next Friday to mark all the cable location and final the cable decision for the whole house. Then another week or two later is the pre-drywall meeting too. Busy busy busy....
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